Contemporary Classical Music
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      Recent Programs

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      Ambient Environments

      Composers like Beethoven, Mendelssohn and Bartók and have sought to musically depict their environs for centuries. How are landscapes, both urban and pastoral, being represented musically today? We’ll hear composer’s portrayals of locations like David Sampson’s Grant Park in Chicago, the surrounding islands of Australia from Peter Sculthorpe, Michael Daughterty’s George Washington from Mount Rushmore […]

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      Extra Tones: Computing to Composing

      Extra Tones is a new podcast series featuring exclusive content that is not featured in our show, Relevant Tones. The podcast is produced by Relevant Tones reporter, Bea Aldrich. In this first episode, we explore how exactly composing software, such as Sibelius and Finale music notation software has changed the way in which composers compose […]

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      Bob and Kathleen Lombardo in 2013

      Bob and Kathleen Lombardo in 2013

      Rebroadcast: Robert Lombardo

      Robert Lombardo’s sixty years of compositions has made an extraordinary mark on the Chicago contemporary classical music scene. Relevant Tones on WFMT is remembering the late Kathleen Lombardo, whose poems inspired and are frequently the texts of many of Robert’s compositions.

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      "The fallboard of a Knabe grand piano made in around 1884" by Emeraldnabi is licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0

      "The fallboard of a Knabe grand piano made in around 1884" by Emeraldnabi is licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0

      Tickling the Ivories

      All music written for and adapted for piano. Seth features sneak previews upcoming releases from Bridge Records, including the latest Etudes from David Rakowski to new recordings from the acclaimed piano duo Quattro Mani. Hear the exotic sounds of an etude for talking piano to a piece featuring the unusual piano-like instrument, the celesta. David Rakowski […]

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      String Quartet Plus…

      Ever since its creation by Haydn in the 18th century, the string quartet has been one of the preeminent vehicles for more musical innovation. This show features new directions for the string quartet, pairing the quartet with unusual other instruments like frame drum, alto flute and more. William Kraft: Music for String Quartet and Percussion, […]

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      The depiction of Medusa from painter Michelangelo Merisi da Caravaggio.

      The depiction of Medusa from painter Michelangelo Merisi da Caravaggio.

      Musical Mythology

      Seth talks with composer Stacy Garrop about the new recording of her Mythology Symphony inspired by Greek myths. Starting with the exhilarating piece Becoming Medusa, which tells the story of Medusa, a beautiful woman turned into a hideous monster, to the quiet sounds of Penelope Waits, the touching tale of a wife waiting for her […]

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      Composer Einojuhani Rautavaara died July 27, 2016 at the age of 87.

      Composer Einojuhani Rautavaara died July 27, 2016 at the age of 87.

      Remembering Einojuhani Rautavaara

      The great Finnish composer Einojuhani Rautavaara died on July 27, 2016.  He was easily the best-known and widely considered the greatest Finnish composer of his generation and he was the last living link to Jean Sibelius. We were lucky enough to interview him in his home in 2014 for the program In the Field: Finland. In […]

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      Soundward: The Best Through the Ages

      Back by popular demand! Seth welcomes Phil Kline, host on Q2 Music and composer who makes music in many genres and contexts, into a rousing debate and conversation about newly released music like Abrahamsen’s Let Me Tell You while rediscovering old favorites like Satie’s Portrait De Socrate. Another exciting installment of Soundward! Check out Phil Kline weekdays at […]

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      Image Credit: Alex Delfanne

      Image Credit: Alex Delfanne

      What is Wandelweiser?

      Originally a German musical creation, Wandelweiser is a kind of extreme minimalism that is fast becoming popular with composers around the world. We talk with two of its creators, Jürg Frey and Eva-Maria Houben, about the phenomenal growth of this movement. Jürg Frey: More or Less Normal a.pe.ri.od.ic 5:37 Frey: 60 Pieces of Sound (excerpt) […]

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      Shuffling the deck, music chosen by luck and chance.

      A riffle shuffle being performed during a game of poker at a bar near Madison, Wisconsin. Photo by: Johnny Blood

      Dealer’s Choice!

      Great music is a game of expertise, luck, and chance. Seth curates a list of great music and discusses why it’s a winner.   Peter Stopschinski Now Would Be a Good Time “Agitated Conversation” [EXCERPT] 2:14 Vykintas Baltakas “Eine Kleine Nachtmusik” 6:48 Karel Husa Karel Husa: String Quartets Nos. 2 And 3 “String Quartet No. […]

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      2016's Classical NEXT Conference took place from May 25-28

      Classical NEXT is in it's 11th year and takes place in Rotterdam, NL.

      Classical: NEXT

      Though relatively new, the Classical Next conference attracts composers, performers and presenters from nearly fifty countries every year to share performances and new ideas for strengthening classical music.  Seth travels to Rotterdam to take in the sounds and share them with you. Solomia Soroka: Violin Sonata No. 2 Ralph Van Raat Mvt. 2 “Brutal, Fast” […]

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      MATA Festival was founded by Philip Glass, Lisa Bielawa and Eleonor Sandresky.

      MATA Festival was founded by Philip Glass, Lisa Bielawa and Eleonor Sandresky.

      The Young Generation

      Seth explores the country and overseas identifying the hottest young talents and try to guess at emerging trends that are inspiring the next generation of composers. Alex Weiser Performed by Musicians Kettle Corn New Music “Three Epitaphs” for singer and chamber orchestra 12:00 Conrad Tao Composed and Performed by Conrad Tao “A Walk (For Emilio)” for […]

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      Photo courtesy of Andrew Norman

      Photo courtesy of Andrew Norman

      Composer Spotlight: Andrew Norman

      With recent commissions and performances from the L.A. Philharmonic, Boston Modern Orchestra Project and the New York Philharmonic, in addition to his work with celebrated collective Sleeping Giant, Andrew Norman has emerged as a major figure in today’s classical music world.   Andrew Norman Boston Modern Orchestra Project Play: Level 1 [EXCERPT] Andrew Norman Switch 28:34 Andrew Norman […]

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      q2music_1

      Soundward with Q2 Music’s Phil Kline

      Phil Kline is a composer who makes music in many genres and contexts, from experimental electronics and sound installations to songs, choral, theater, chamber and orchestral music; he hosts a two-hour show weekdays at 11am – with repeat presentations at 7 pm – on Q2 Music. Join Phil Kline as he sits down with Seth Boustead […]

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      8 A Modern Symphony

      Modern Symphony, Part I

      Much like the novel, people are always pronouncing the symphony to be a dead form.  And yet, composers continue to write symphonies at an incredible pace.  We’ll feature music by composers around the world who are adding to the symphonic canon. Erkki Sven-Tüür: Symphony 3 Vienna Radio Symphony Orchestra/ Dennis Russell Davies ECM 465134 14:20, […]

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