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Abraham Lincoln

February 21, 2011

President's Day

Today on PT, special music in honor of a few of our 44 Commanders-in-Chief. The inimitable James Earl Jones reads words by Abraham Lincoln, in Aaron Copland's "Lincoln Portrait." We'll tip our caps to Harry S. Truman, perhaps our most musical president. And hear how Ronald Reagan facilitated pianist Vladimir Feltsman's defection from the former Soviet Union. Plus works inspired by U.S. presidents, from George Washington to Bill Clinton.

Today's Playlist

Performance Today audio is available for thirty days following broadcast.

hour 1

  • Morton Gould
    American Salute
    The Boston Pops, John Williams, conductor
  • Erich Korngold
    Kings Row
    The National Philharmonic Orchestra, Charles Gerhardt, conductor
  • Ludwig van Beethoven
    Piano Sonata No. 8 in C Minor, Op. 13 (Pathetique)
    Vladimir Feltsman, piano
    Kravis Center for the Performing Arts, West Palm Beach, Florida
  • John Adams
    The Chairman Dances
    The Los Angeles Philharmonic, Xian Zhang, conductor
    Walt Disney Concert Hall, Los Angeles
  • Larry Rosen
    Opinion
    Essential Voices USA, Judith Clurman, music director
    American Academy of Arts and Letters, New York City
  • Michael Gilbertson
    Washington Round
    Essential Voices USA, Judith Clurman, music director
    American Academy of Arts and Letters, New York City
  • John Philip Sousa
    The George Washington Bicentennial March
    The United States Marine Band, Colonel Timothy W. Foley, conductor
    Clarice Smith Performing Arts Center, College Park, Maryland

hour 2

  • John Philip Sousa
    Presidential Polonaise
    The United States Marine Band, Colonel Timothy W. Foley, conductor
  • Johann Strauss, Jr.
    The Blue Danube Waltz
    Earl Wild, piano
    Carnegie Hall, New York City
  • Aaron Copland
    Lincoln Portrait
    James Earl Jones, narrator, the Seattle Symphony, Gerard Schwarz, conductor
  • Leonard Bernstein
    Fanfare for the Inauguration of J.F.K.
    The London Philharmonic Orchestra, Jorge Mester, conductor
  • Felix Mendelssohn
    Two movements from Piano Trio No. 1 in D Minor, Op. 49
    Mieczyslaw Horszowski, piano, Alexander Schneider, violin, Pablo Casals, cello
    The White House, Washington, D.C.
Program Archive



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