About the program
Performance Today is America's most popular classical music radio program, with more than 1.3 million weekly listeners on more than 260 stations around the country.
Performance Today features timely recordings that can't be heard anywhere else, recent performances by the great artists of our time and by the next generation of classical artists, from concert halls around the globe. Plus interviews and performances from the APM studios, and from concert stages around the country, along with classical music news and features. Every week composer Bruce Adolphe joins host Fred Child for a classical music game, the PT Piano Puzzler. Performance Today is based at the APM studios in Saint Paul, Minnesota, but is frequently on the road, with special programs broadcast from festivals and public radio stations around the country. And in 2006, Performance Today was live from Mozart's hometown of Salzburg, Austria for Mozart's 250th birthday celebrations.
The list of concert performers and studio guests on Performance Today is a Who's Who of the classical music world: the Vienna Philharmonic, the Berlin Philharmonic, the New York Philharmonic, the San Francisco Symphony, the Los Angeles Philharmonic, the Cleveland Orchestra, the Philadelphia Orchestra, the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, Yo-Yo Ma, Martha Argerich, Gil Shaham, Midori, Itzhak Perlman, Joshua Bell, Pierre Boulez, John Adams, Simone Dinnerstein, Stephen Hough, Renee Fleming, Placido Domingo, Cecelia Bartoli, the Emerson Quartet, Sir Simon Rattle, Daniel Barenboim, Michael Tilson Thomas, Ravi Shankar, Emanuel Ax, Mitsuko Uchida and Richard Goode, to name just a few. Performance Today also highlights young American soloists with the potential for great careers as "Young Artists in Residence." PT is proud to count pianists Orli Shaham, Jeremy Denk, and Jonathan Biss, guitarist Jason Vieaux, and violinist Colin Jacobsen among our many former Young Artists.
About the host
Fred Child is the host of APM's Performance Today, the most-listened-to classical music radio show in America. Fred is also the commentator and announcer for Live from Lincoln Center, the only live performing arts series on television.
Fred also appears at classical music festivals and events around the country, from annual appearances at the Aspen Music Festival and School, to special events at the Virginia Arts Festival, Marlboro Music, the Spoleto Festival USA, Summerfest La Jolla, the Round Top Festival-Institute, and many more.
In addition to being a premiere classical host, Fred hosted NPR's innovative "Creators @ Carnegie," a program of wide-ranging performers in concert at Carnegie Hall, including Brian Wilson, David Byrne, Randy Newman, Dawn Upshaw, Youssou N'Dour, Caetano Veloso, Emmylou Harris, and others. Before going to NPR, Fred was Music Director and Director of Cultural Programming at WNYC in New York, host of a live daily performance and interview program on WNYC, and for 10 years, a host at Oregon Public Broadcasting.
For several years, Fred's pre-concert talks were a popular feature for the Washington Performing Arts Society, in Washington DC. He has also given concert talks for Lincoln Center, the Aspen Festival, Summerfest La Jolla, and many other venues across the country.
In recent years, Fred has hosted a series of unique live national concert broadcasts, including the Los Angeles Philharmonic's opening concerts from Walt Disney Hall, Gustavo Dudamel's debut with the LA Philharmonic, season-opening concerts at Carnegie Hall, the Berlin Philharmonic live at Carnegie Hall, the New York Philharmonic's world premiere of John Adams's "On the Transmigration of Souls," the Last Night of the Proms from the Royal Albert Hall in London, New Year's concerts by the New York Philharmonic, Seiji Ozawa's final concert with the Boston Symphony at Tanglewood, James Levine's debut as Music Director of the Boston Symphony, and the ground-breaking "Spring for Music" concerts from Carnegie Hall.
Fred's CD reviews have appeared on NPR's All Things Considered, his music reports have appeared on NPR's Morning Edition and Weekend Edition. He's been a contributor to Billboard magazine, and a commentator for BBC Radio 3.
While growing up in Portland, Oregon, Fred studied classical piano. He also dabbles in guitar, percussion, and bagpipes. His percussion band opened for the Grateful Dead at the Oakland Coliseum. He has narrated works at the Aspen Festival, with the Virginia Symphony, with the U.S. Marine Band, and at the Round Top Festival-Institute. His rare musical performances in public include percussion with guitarist Sharon Isbin, and piano four-hands duets with Andre-Michel Schub. He appears as an actor in a video commissioned for the Partita for Solo Violin by Philip Glass.
Fred loves baseball (throws right, bats left) and is an avid hiker, climber, skier, cyclist, runner, and a licensed private pilot.