Classical 91.5

Classical Blog

This is a place where our classical hosts, interns and artists can share their stories, viewpoints and point of view on topics related to classical music and the arts in general.  Come back to this page often to read the latest and share your comments.

Ways to Connect

Sarah and the Moose

Jun 12, 2017

What's your voice type? Alto? Soprano? Bass? Tenor?  Not sure?  Here's a primer to help you find your spot in the choir. (Click the post title if you don't see it, and enjoy.)

The daily 6:40 a.m. Mystery Piece (June 12 - 16) will test how well you can identify singers' voices.

Thanks to the Classical 91.5 listener to who sent in this comic relief! ~ Brenda

In 2017, the race to the Tony is much less clear-cut than last year. In 2016, it was easy to predict which show would run away with just about every statue as Hamilton received 13 nominations and took home an impressive 11 awards, including Best Musical. This year, the awards may not be as one-sided, as there are several different shows in the running for the various big categories. Here is a quick look at what I think are the most heated races and which shows just may take home the coveted statue.

When Classical 91.5 listener Bruce Leslie attended a university graduation ceremony in London, he expected to hear Edward Elgar’s first “Pomp and Circumstance” march.   But he didn’t.  When he asked people about its omission, they looked at him incredulously and said that music had no connection with graduation in the U.K.

“Mompou is evoking in music the silence…and the silence is music.”  

When guitarist Rafaella Smits visited Rochester, she played and spoke about music by Catalan - French - Spanish composer Federico Mompou (1893-1987).

I think it’s fair to say Mompou is one of the composers with a “cult” following – he’s not mainstream famous, even among those who routinely listen to classical music, yet his music is beloved and revered by those who are in the know.  

Stephanie Marsh

It's been a great season of Live from Hochstein - with everything from Brahms to brass, world premieres, wind quintet favorites, and Radiohead played by the Eastman Cello Ensemble (along with music by David Liptak, Caleb Burhans, and Arvo Pärt. You can hear this season finale show here: 


Garden Delights

May 9, 2017
Brenda Tremblay

After the snow melts and the mud subsides, Rochester’s public gardens will take your breath away!  Here are some of my favorite gardens and music for your strolling pleasure.

Steinway

“I know a professor who painted a piano…”

“WHAT? That damages the sound! How could he? Was it an old junker?”

“Actually, it was a Steinway…”

 - Conversation backstage before an orchestra concert last week

You can cause some damage if you just start slapping paint on a piano in any old way. The frame of the piano affects the sound and resonance of the entire instrument.

It’s another thing if you are a trained artist, commissioned by Steinway to create one of their limited edition or special pianos.  There are some absolute beauties that have been created over the years, and one recent one - called "Pictures at an Exhibition" is particularly stunning. 

5 Classical Pieces to Ring in the (Earth Day) Season

Apr 17, 2017

This is a guest post from Claire Caverly, a member of the Empire Film Music Ensemble (EFME). EFME will be performing an Earth Day centered concert, TERRA, on Earth Day, April 22, at 6PM at the Lutheran Church of the Reformation. TERRA is a multimedia experience exploring humanity’s changing relationship with the Earth through music, film, lighting, and photography. More information can be found at empirefilmmusicensemble.com.

While it doesn’t come with ribbons or bows, Earth Day is one of the most important holidays of the year  - but also one of the most forgotten. The earth is our home, but modern, on-the-go lifestyles don’t leave much time for environmental awareness. In order to raise eco-consciousness, we at Empire Film Music Ensemble have been hard at work preparing our upcoming Earth Day concert, TERRA. To help you get in the spirit of going green, here are five classical pieces to listen to in honor of Earth Day.

 

Most musical groups have a mission – like the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra (To inspire, educate and engage our community through the art of music). 

There are a few ensembles who aim to do even more – something beyond the already laudable musical missions of most groups. Here are a few orchestras with extra-musical missions that I have come across over the past few months that I thought you might enjoy knowing.

Former Eastman School of Music Arts Leadership Program intern Bridget Kinneary is currently a Fulbright English Teaching Assistant in German.  She is using her passion for teaching and classical music to make connections and encourage positive social change around the world.  As part of her semester abroad, she recently had the opportunity to travel to Belize to work with the National Youth Orchestra.

Read Bridget's travel blog here.

Pages