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Dec 31
Does wine taste better when you're listening to classical music? A study by a Scottish scientist argued that it does. We decided to put this theory to the test in a special broadcast, a Performance Today music listening and wine tasting party. Jason Kallsen, founder and owner of Twin Cities Wine Education, provided some wine recommendations to accompany our playlist.
Dec 30
Today, we'll take a look at some of the big events in classical music in 2008. We'll also feature some of the performers who had a particularly good year in 2008, including conductor Gustavo Dudamel, pianist Lang Lang, violinists Gil Shaham and Leila Josefowicz, and the Beaux Arts Trio.
Dec 29
Concertgebouw
Amsterdam's Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra was recently ranked as the top orchestra in the world. And their home, the Concertgebouw, is widely regarded as the best concert hall in the world. Add to that mix conductor Mariss Jansons, whom some have called the best conductor in the world, and you've got an unbeatable combination. Today we'll hear the Royal Concertgebouw with Mariss Jansons at the Concertgebouw, playing Schubert's Symphony No. 3.
Dec 27
snow winter
Dec 26
There are lots of great encoded mysteries in the world. Some of them, like Egyptian hieroglyphics, have been solved. Unfortunately, there's no Rosetta Stone to help decipher Edward Elgar's "Enigma Variations," but there are some interesting theories about them. Tune in today for a performance of the "Enigma Variations" by the Iceland Symphony Orchestra.
Dec 25
Like a box of fine chocolates, today's show features a rich assortment of the sweet and the tart, the smooth and the chewy. Sink your teeth into today's show, and you'll hear holiday music from all over the world. We'll feature music from different cultures - some serious, some fun, all delightful. Merry Christmas from all of us at Performance Today!
Dec 24
snow winter
Christmas Eve of 1914 wasn't supposed to be a silent night. World War I was going on, and men were supposed to be killing one another. But, just for that night, both sides gave up fighting and made peace. Join us today as the men of Cantus tell the story of that night, in word and song.
Dec 23
Robert Kapilow
Today's show features two great choral masterpieces for Christmas. We'll feature Cantata I of Bach's "Christmas Oratorio" from Stockholm, Sweden, and selections from Handel's "Messiah," featuring Apollo's Fire from Cleveland. In addition, we'll talk with Rob Kapilow, author of a series of commentaries called "What Makes it Great?" He'll explain what makes Handel's "Hallelujah Chorus" so great.
Dec 22
snow winter
Today we'll celebrate the start of winter after yesterday's solstice. It's also the first full day of Hannukah, and Christmas is just a few days away. We'll have lots of great programming in honor of this most festive season of the year, featuring great performances from all over the world.
Dec 20
Sergei Rachmaninoff
Dec 19
When Francis Poulenc was composing one particular piece, he said he was imagining angels sticking out their tongues and solemn monks playing soccer. The result is the gloriously irreverent "Gloria," for choir and orchestra. Today we'll hear Mariss Jansons and the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra perform it in Amsterdam. Plus, the Rose Ensemble returns for some early American Christmas music.
Dec 18
The Rose Ensemble, one of the country's great early music groups, stopped by our studios recently to share some of their holiday music with us. Today, we'll feature them in a set of Baroque Christmas pieces from Mexico. It's a unique sound that's a blend of both the old and new worlds.
Dec 17
He's young, handsome, and plays a Guarneri violin. That's the equivalent of driving an expensive sports car. Today, the young Ukrainian violinist Andrej Bielow will take us on some fast curves and hairpin turns, as he performs Glazunov's violin concerto with the Slovak Radio Symphony in Bratislava, Slovakia. Mario Kosik conducts.
Dec 16
Ludwig van Beethoven
Not many of us can hope to be remembered when we've been gone almost two centuries. Beethoven is one of those rare humans who left an enormous legacy for future generations. Today, we'll wish him a happy 238th by playing two of his works. We'll hear the first symphony in Wyoming, and the first piano concerto in Los Angeles, featuring soloist Ingrid Fliter.
Dec 15
Dvorak
An hour of folk-flavored fare reaches a climax with a fiery performance of the Dvorak Cello Concerto. At a concert at Budapest's Palace of Arts, Pieter Wispelwey performs one of the great works for his instrument, in the company of conductor Ivan Fischer and the Budapest Festival Orchestra.
Dec 13
HILARY HAHN
Violinist Hilary Hahn was just nominated for two Grammy Awards for her 2008 recording of the Schoenberg and Sibelius violin concertos. Today we'll hear her in a performance of the Dvorak violin concerto with the Cleveland Orchestra, part of our week-long celebration of the Cleveland Orchestra's 90th anniversary season.
Dec 12
alfed brendel 01
After 60 years of great performances, legendary pianist Alfred Brendel will retire next week. Today we'll hear him in concert with the Cleveland Orchestra, playing Beethoven's third piano concerto in Cleveland. Franz Welser-Most conducts. We'll also air some listener comments and memories, wrapping up our week-long celebration of the Cleveland Orchestra.
Dec 11
Today we'll take you to the Festival del Sole in California's Napa Valley. Violinist Joshua Bell and pianist Jean-Yves Thibaudet team up for a sonata by Edvard Grieg. Plus, we'll continue our week-long celebration of the Cleveland Orchestra with their performance of Aaron Copland's suite from the ballet, "Appalachian Spring," in Cleveland.
Dec 10
Robert Spano
Today we continue our week-long look at the Cleveland Orchestra, one of the world's finest. They've had lots of colorful characters at the podium, including one who always conducted with a pistol in his back pocket. Today, we'll hear guest conductor Robert Spano lead the orchestra in music by Wagner and Ravel, from a concert in Cleveland.
Dec 9
HILARY HAHN
Violinist Hilary Hahn was just nominated for two Grammy Awards for her 2008 recording of the Schoenberg and Sibelius violin concertos. Today we'll hear her in a performance of the Dvorak violin concerto with the Cleveland Orchestra, part of our week-long celebration of the Cleveland Orchestra's 90th anniversary season.
Dec 8
The Cleveland Orchestra is 90 years old this year, but they're sounding as fresh and exciting as ever. We'll help celebrate the anniversary by featuring performances by this great American orchestra every day this week. Today, the Cleveland Orchestra plays Brahms' fourth symphony at home in Severance Hall. Music director Franz Welser-Most conducts.
Dec 6
Gil Shaham
Nearly twenty years ago, violinist Gil Shaham got a call from philanthropist Avery Fisher, telling Shaham he had won a career grant. Two weeks ago, Shaham won the coveted Avery Fisher Prize, the highest honor given to an American classical instrumentalist. Today we'll feature a performance of the Beethoven Violin Concerto with Gil Shaham and the Aspen Chamber Symphony, from the Aspen Festival.
Dec 5
Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra
We'll feature the acclaimed Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra twice today. First we'll hear them at home in St. Paul, Minnesota, with pianist Christian Zacharias playing a Chopin concerto. Then we'll follow them on their Scandinavian tour, and hear a recent concert in Copenhagen. Violinist Nikolaj Znaider joins them for a Mozart concerto. Tune in for one of the country's finest chamber orchestras, both at home and on the road.
Dec 4
The Emerson String Quartet
The Emerson String Quartet has spent nearly thirty years making great chamber music together. They don't have any problems keeping up with the demanding repertoire or concert schedule. But one of their big concerns is keeping the music fresh, whether it's the first performance of a piece or the 101st. Tune in today to hear them perform a Haydn string quartet.
Dec 3
Gil Shaham
Nearly twenty years ago, violinist Gil Shaham got a call from philanthropist Avery Fisher, telling Shaham he had won a career grant. Two weeks ago, Shaham won the coveted Avery Fisher Prize, the highest honor given to an American classical instrumentalist. Today we'll feature a performance of the Beethoven Violin Concerto with Gil Shaham and the Aspen Chamber Symphony, from the Aspen Festival.
Dec 2
Pianist Radu Lupu isn't exactly a media darling. He has a gruff exterior. He scowls at the audience when he performs, grants no interviews, and generally keeps to himself. But his playing is wonderfully warm and expressive. Today we'll hear him perform Beethoven's fourth piano concerto with the Swedish Radio Symphony.
Dec 1
Stravinsky once said that "writing about music is like dancing about architecture." Today we'll turn that around and have music about writing. Today's second hour features some musical works that are based on poetry, and others that are musical poems themselves. Plus, one of the orchestras on the show was just named the best in the world. Tune in to find out who the winner was.