Music + Culture

 

Listen to the recreation of a vintage radio broadcast followed by a thought-provoking panel discussion on Evergreen Radio Live , recorded on April 25.

Joel Peterson

Picking out a Mother’s Day card has never been easy for me. The cards with feminine designs and gold font catch my eye but the words never convey the difficult relationship between my mother and me. Sure I could go with the clichés of ‘You’re the best mom ever!” or try to fill a blank card with my own feelings. But sometimes those feelings are too intense for a card. Sometimes it's easier to send jewelry and pretend all is well. But so much is left unsaid. That came home hard for me when I...

Wikimedia Commons

Every day is a day to be thankful for the moms of the world, but the second Sunday of every May is set aside as a nice reminder to show that appreciation and gratitude. This year, celebrate Mother's Day with the Classical Music world. Antonín Dvořák , Johannes Brahms and Richard Wagner all felt the need to share their inspiration through music and Northwest Public Radio is sharing that music with you. Gypsy Songs: “Songs My Mother Taught Me”, Antonín Dvořák Songs my mother taught me, In the...

Andrew Jacobs

The Rimsky-Korsakoffee House in Portland, OR recently became the topic of conversation here at Northwest Public Radio. It seemed only natural to send word to my Portland-residing father, who decided to head over to the musically themed café that evening, buy himself some dessert and check things out. He and I bonded over a love of Scheherazade when I was very young - one of those unconditional, slightly irrational feelings of love that has lasted a couple decades and is safe to assume will...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QSd11-CZinA Trumpeter Rolf Smedvig, praised for his beautiful tone and virtuosic style, died Monday afternoon at his home in West Stockbridge, Mass. The cause of death, according to his long-time manager Mark Z. Alpert, was a heart attack. Smedvig was 62. Perhaps best known as one of the founding members of the widely acclaimed Empire Brass Quintet, Smedvig enjoyed a busy career as a soloist with major orchestras, including those in Boston, Chicago and...

Bruce Bradberry Retires (Again)

Apr 27, 2015

A warm and cheery voice familiar to millions is going away. Bruce Bradberry is retiring. Bradberry , who has been a fixture on NWPR's Weekend Edition for 20 of the last 26 years (he retired a few times before), will turn off the mic for probably the last time on April 26 to take up the next chapter of the Book of Bradberry , whatever it may be. The early chapters are all about radio. Bradberry worked the mic for the first time in the mid-1960s in south-central Los Angeles at Pepperdine...

It was 1964 when the young Philip Glass found himself in Paris. He was on a Fulbright scholarship to study with the revered pedagogue Nadia Boulanger . It was a career move carefully planned. Glass wanted to be a composer and he knew Boulanger's rigorous lessons in traditional Western harmony and counterpoint would sharpen his skills. But a completely unplanned event in Paris led Glass to discover a very different kind of music — music that would influence his life and his compositions. "The...

Mobeen Ansari / http://www.npr.org/

Imagine your life if attending a concert were against the law. Now imagine trying to bring the music back to life, in a country where the skills to play it have been almost lost. A new documentary takes you to Pakistan, where it's more than just an imaginary scenario. For the full story of the race to revive classical music in Pakistan, go here .

Peter Serling / http://www.npr.org/

Northwest Public Radio's classical music programming staff has lately been making sure to include women composers on our playlists. Here's one you might not have heard of -- but now you will. Julia Wolfe has received the Pulitzer Prize for her oratorio about coal miners and their families. Listen to the award-winning piece and learn more about Wolfe here.

NWPR

Happy Birthday to the Bard of Avon, William Shakespeare! As you heard all throughout April 23 on Northwest Public Radio, his theatrical genius has inspired countless composers over the centuries. Since music is "the food of love," play on! Check the "Schedules and Playlist" tab for all the Shakespeare related music on the April 23 playlist.

Coffee 101: What You Need To Know

Apr 16, 2015
Matthew Hamm / http://www.flickr.com/

So you love your coffee , but do you know your beans? To help you get started on your way to becoming a coffee aficionado, here are some coffee basics. Where The Beans Come From Coffee is grown all over the world – from the Americas, to Asia, Africa and the Middle East. There are two main types of coffee farms, clear-cut and shade grown, and their descriptions are pretty self-explanatory . Clear-cut coffee farms are packed close together and in full sunlight. Shade grown coffee farms are...

Marty Sohl Metropolitan Opera

This month, the Northwest native Angela Meade will grace the stage of the Metropolitan Opera in New York in Verdi’s Ernani. The Centralia native is no newcomer to opera, and has maintained a buzz of international excitement from critics and opera fans alike, since the beginning of her career in 2008. Meade was on the Opera News’ cover in their 13 th Diva Issue in November. Chronicling her rise to stardom, Fred Cohn wrote: "In more than thirty years of attending performances of Norma , I had...

Super Thursday brought you three musical montages of piano, choral and opera hits. If you missed them, you can listen below and find information on playlists! Piano Concerto Montage - Created by Jessie Jacobs Sergei Rachmaninoff Concerto No. 2: I. Van Cliburn , piano/ RCA Symphony Orchestra, Kiril Kondrashin RCA 5912 Peter Tchaikovsky Piano Concerto No. 1: I. Van Cliburn, piano/ Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Fritz Reiner RCA 5912 Maurice Ravel Piano Concerto in G: I. Martha Argerich, piano/...

When you become a first-time member of Northwest Public Radio we promise it will be the smoothest, easiest relationship you've ever had! And when you pledge today your new membership is worth and extra $11,000! If 400 first-time listeners join Northwest Public Radio, members of our Leadership Circle will donate $11,000 to help pay for the programs you use! Join now!

Sueann Ramella

When you become a first-time member of Northwest Public Radio during the 2015 spring pledge drive you will be raising even more money! How? If 400 listeners become new members, our Leadership Circle will donate $11,000 to the station. That means your pledge, in any amount, will be worth more! Become a new member today!

We're in radio, but that doesn't mean we don't love our movies. We took some of our favorite movie scenes and made in them into a message specially for our supporters and listeners. Can you tell what movies and characters these are from? https://youtu.be/uZ3kADx-CXo That's not it, though. To make sure you truly understand how much your support means to us...well, heeeeeere's Brett! https://youtu.be/v5tlsLSaL0c There's also something extra special about this Super Thursday. A group of long...

Ramsey Fendall / Risk Love LLC

When actor-director Ethan Hawke (star of Boyhood ) found himself seated next to a classical pianist named Seymour Bernstein at a dinner party, stage fright was what they found they had in common. Bernstein had handled his decades ago, by walking away from the glitter and fame of a concert career in favor of a teaching career and a solitary life. Hawke, in his directorial debut, profiles his new friend in a labor of love, the tender documentary film Seymour: An Introduction . Northwest Public...

One of our favorite NPR shows plus Beethoven's famous little piano piece adds up to a must-listen moment!

From Fresh Air with Terry Gross (weekdays at 2 on our News Service; Sundays at 5 on our Classical Music Service): the show's music critic delights in a 1932 performance of Fur Elise, revived by a company called...

NPR / npr.org

T he host of your Sunday noontime show " From the Top ," pianist Christopher O'Riley, and cellist Matt Haimovitz visit the cozy NPR home of Tiny Desk Concerts . Tucked into a casual office corner, backed by shelves of books and trinkets, reading the music off their tablets, they offer up some Beethoven and Philip Glass and Leos Janacek , with a nod to "The Unbearable Lightness of Being." And as a fun side note, this piece was co-produced by Tom Huizinga , whose reports you often read here on...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xa6zIsWfRtw Jazz bassist and composer Christian McBride recently finished a week-long West Coast tour in Seattle . It reminded him of how great a town it was for jazz, both historically and presently. "There's always been a very powerful jazz community in Seattle," McBride says, citing the early careers of Ray Charles and Quincy Jones. "Quietly, it's been one of the most important jazz cities." All Things Considered 's jazz correspondent (and the host of the...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xH39UAAkWBY Does the name Jan Antonín Koželuh mean anything to you? It doesn't register even to most classical music geeks. But Albrecht Mayer would like to change that. Mayer, the Berlin Philharmonic 's principal oboist, chose a concerto by Koželuh and works by three other forgotten 18th-century composers for the new album Lost and Found . Mayer solos in the concertos and conducts the Kammerakademie Potsdam. How did he discover these neglected composers? Online...

How The Northwest Started Loving Coffee

Mar 10, 2015
Benjamin Morris / NPR

Seattle is known for its love of coffee but as Pacific Northwesterners know, it's a passion not unique to the West Side. So how did coffee become such a Northwest staple? Starbucks may be the first entity people think of as an answer to this question. And although Starbucks did play a significant role in the eventual coffee craze, the Northwest’s history with the beverage goes deeper than that. A number of factors contributed to the rise of coffee in America. The National Coffee Association...

Tiny Desk Concerts / NPR

We know you love guitar music. From Classical Guitar Alive (Sunday mornings at 9), to Inland Folk (Saturdays, 11am-2pm), to the guitar solos and concertos our classical music hosts bring you throughout the days and evenings, Northwest Public Radio listeners warm to this ageless, genre-spanning instrument. Here’s a guitar quartet from Ireland, bringing their cool, transparent sound to music by the American composer Philip Glass, in one of NPR’s “Tiny Desk Concerts .”

A Film From Mali: The Day Before The Music Died

Mar 4, 2015

Just its title has an ominous sense of finality: Th e Last Song Before the War . The documentary by Kiley Kraskouskas presents the 2011 Festival in the Desert, a showcase for Mali's incredible musicians that had been held underneath the stars outside of Timbuktu for 12 years. Ten months after the joyous celebration depicted in the film, Islamic extremists took over that part of the country. Among the horrors inflicted by the occupiers was a total ban on music. As Last Song shows, the festival...

marionandemiliefrancesbauer.com

Susan Pickett’s Marion and Emilie Frances Bauer: From the Wild West to American Musical Modernism delivers exactly what the title suggests: adventures of two women in an exciting era of classical music. It follows them from their beginnings in Walla Walla, through European adventures, lives as musicians, critics, composers - and, for Marion – a career as a music teacher in New York City. The book is packed with letters, articles, music samples and reviews from and about the sisters, offering...

The (Not So) Secret World Of Northwest Curling

Mar 3, 2015
Peter Miller / Flickr

Curling: it's that sport with the stones and the brooms. You might have seen it played at the Olympics. Canadians play it. For many Americans, that's the extent of our curling knowledge. So this video might help bring everyone up to speed: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WXHh_wadqPw So that's curling. It's a little bit hockey, a little bit bowling, a little bit shuffleboard. Four players on each team. Each player throws the stone and tries to land it closest to the target, or "house." Players...

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Updated at 1:16 p.m. Actor Leonard Nimoy, best known for his role as Mr. Spock, the logical half-Vulcan, half-human in the original Star Trek series and several movies, has died at his home in Los Angeles, his granddaughter, Madeleine, told NPR. Nimoy was 83. The cause was end-stage chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, she said. NPR's Neda Ulaby, who is reporting on the story, tells our Newscast unit: "Leonard Nimoy started acting as a teenager at a settlement house theater in Boston where...

The Power Of Storytelling

Feb 27, 2015
Mark Mullaney.

What stories do you tell? What stories could you be telling? On the occasion of National Public Radio's 45th birthday--celebrated this week--let's honor the power of storytelling. What stories could you tell about how music has affected your life? Here's a powerful one about a choir in Dallas. NPR sent it. What makes it so compelling? The Dallas Street Choir is made up of a dozen homeless singers. Follow the link for their full story. Thank you for reading it and sharing it. Who knows what...

P.A.D Studio/Courtesy of the artist

"Are you hearing me?" A conductor in China asks that question, and it will echo back across the ocean in 5 years of concerts . 40 new compositions. High profile performers. Yes, including that globe-spanning cello virtuoso Yo-Yo Ma, but not just. Conductor Long Yu launches Compose 20:20 at the NY Philharmonic, featuring Ma and the Chinese sheng virtuoso Wu Tong. From where we sit, at the edge of the Pacific Ocean, it looks like an important cross-planet shout-out.

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