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September 2014
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WFMT

CSO Will Roll Out with a Bang

Riccardo Muti on stage at Millennium Park, c. Todd Rosenberg

The Chicago Symphony Orchestra makes a joyful noise this weekend, performing to capacity crowds. Riccardo Muti opens the concert season with four sold-out performances of Beethoven’s 9th Symphony, and a free Tchaikovsky concert at Millennium Park.

With orchestra and chorus declaring Friedrich Schiller’s Ode to Joy

Filmmaker Ken Burns to Visit WFMT

Ken Burns's latest film is "The Roosevelts: An Intimate History"

Documentary filmmaker Ken Burns comes to WFMT on Tuesday, September 9 for a live conversation with Kerry Frumkin. Mr. Burns will be on-hand to talk about his latest release, The Roosevelts: An Intimate History, which premiers on WTTW on Sunday.

Stars of Lyric Opera Shine Over Millennium Park

Millennium Park in downtown Chicago

On Saturday, Lyric Opera of Chicago gives its annual free concert beneath the lattice of the Pritzker Pavilion. Stars of Lyric Opera will showcase several of the season’s productions.

With the Don Giovanni principals already in rehearsal – opening night is September 27 – the stars will make the short commute to Millennium Park to perform the opera’s finale.

In the Studio with Jason Vieaux

Jason Vieaux

His name appears alongside Usher, Rosanne Cash, and Beyoncé on NPR’s list of “50 Favorite Songs of 2014 (so far).” Jason Vieaux is definitely a man of the 21st century. He tweets, he’s on iTunes, and though he makes appearances all over the world, manages a full teaching schedule online.

Vieaux’s answer to a culture obsessed with playlists

Carlos Kleiber, A Reclusive Genius

CarlosKleiber

“Carlos has a genius for conducting, but he doesn’t enjoy doing it. He tells me, ‘I conduct only when I’m hungry’. And it’s true. He has a deep-freeze. He fills it up and cooks for himself and when it gets down to a certain level, then he thinks ‘Now I might do a concert’.” That

Champion Plays Ravinia

DenisMatsuevCollage

He calls Chicago Blackhawks goaltender Nikolai Khabibulin “a big friend of mine.” His heroes are Vladimir Horowitz and star hockey center Sergei Fedorov. Russian pianist Denis Matsuev, who has “epic technique” according to the Boston Globe, is not shy about talking sports. In a 2009 Impromptu, he told WFMT that as a youth in Siberia, he could hardly be kept indoors. He played either soccer or ice hockey “about seven hours a day. Music was second.” Speaking with a gentle Russian growl, he laughs

Passings: Licia Albanese, Carlo Bergonzi

Licia Albanese as Cio-Cio-San in "Madama Butterfly"

He gave more than 300 performances at the Metropolitan Opera. She exceeded 400. Two Italian-born, 20th century opera stars passed away in recent weeks: tenor Carlo Bergonzi and soprano Licia Albanese. Bergonzi in particular had a long performance history in Chicago, making his American debut at Lyric Opera in 1955; while Albanese worked primarily in New York

Why You Should Hear this Composer

Christopher Theofanidis

The glass ceiling between living composers and those of a hundred years ago seems to be splintering. One of the principal agents is Dallas-native Christopher Theofanidis. He is one of the most sought-after composers today, with performances by over seventy orchestras worldwide. While he’s had plenty of attention

“Relevant Tones” Thinks Global, Acts Local

"Relevant Tones" host Seth Boustead

Chicago composer Seth Boustead thought he was well-networked and well-positioned to create a local new music show for WFMT with producer Jesse McQuarters – that was then. He’s had to adjust his thinking a bit.

In the last year, Relevant Tones went national

CSO Principal talks Elgar and Muti

CSO Principal Cello John Sharp, Madrid, c. Todd Rosenberg

Anyone who has seen Riccardo Muti catch air on the podium, might be hard-pressed to think of him as an old dog. Last spring, the youthful, now 73-year-old conductor demonstrated his willingness to learn new tricks: he led the CSO in his first-ever performance of the Elgar Cello Concerto.