Voice of the Arts
Johnny Mathis returns to Pittsburgh to perform with the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra on Saturday July 22nd at Heinz Hall. WQED-FM's Jim Cunningham talks to Johnny about his illustrious career.
Swedish pianist Oscar Micaelsson stopped by the WQED-FM studio to perform piano improvisations in promotion of his July 12th concert at City Theater. Oscar sat down with Luke Campayno to discuss his career, background, first impressions of Pittsburgh, and more. His first improvisation turned out to be a gargantuan piano exploration of the opening to Gustav Mahler’s 5th symphony. He closed the session with a beautiful improvisation on a Swedish folk song that has been used as a hymn.
WQED-FM's Jim Cunningham interviews the Music Director of the Minnesota Orchestra, Osmo Vanska, about the release of his musical album "Kullervo," based on the symphonic poem by John Sibellius, drawn from the Finnish epic poem the "Kalevala." Throughout the interview, the two speak about cultural authenticity, the importance of storytelling, and how to properly survive harsh winters--among many other topics.
WQED-FM's Ethan Simmons interviews Principal and Assistant Conductors Clem Rolin and Tom Snyder of the West Hills Symphonic Band, in preparation for the band's upcoming appearance at the Citiparks' "Bach, Beethoven, and Brunch" event, Sunday, July 16th at Mellon Park in Shadyside. The three discuss the importance of training young musicians alongside professionals and longstanding music-educators, as well as the beauty of classical music.
WQED-FM's Anna Singer discusses her role as Mrs. Lovett, the pie maker and collaborator of Sweenie Todd, in Stephen Sondheim’s 1979 classic musical - on through the third week of July for Pittsburgh Festival Opera with Doug Levine providing musical direction at the Falk Auditorium at Winchester Thurston.
Tenor George Milosh sings the complete "Die Schoene Mullerin" by Franz Schubert Wednesday July 12th at Shadyside Presbyterian Church with pianist Francesca Tortorella. Favorite recordings, all about poet Wilhelm Muller, unrequited love, jumping in the river to end the pain, the long blond hair of the miller’s daughter, love from beyond the grave with withered flowers, lots of green, loving above your station in life, madness - it's all covered in the interview. George sings in the Mendelssohn Choir, Pittsburgh Opera Chorus, Resonance Works, Undercroft Opera, and Pittsburgh Camerata. He's a Boston Conservatory grad and singing mercenary.
Donald Fellows, organist and Director of Music at St Paul Cathedral, each summer invites colleagues from the organ world to prepare 50 minutes of their best for the Beckerath organ (favorite instrument of William F. Buckley Jr.) at the seat of the Pittsburgh Catholic diocese. Donald Fellows plays 50 funerals and 75 weddings this year. Don has a saxophone soloist for his recital and there’s a trumpet in the plan too. Here is the complete rundown of the Sunday 4pm series in air conditioned cool. The concerts are free with free parking, at the corner of Fifth and N. Craig in Oakland through August with three concerts in the fall planned too. There is an extraordinary wide range of music sure to bring a tingle while admiring the altar in the sanctuary. Don has all the inside play by play on the memorial service for Steelers legendary owner Dan Rooney which he played with Pittsburgh Symphony Principal piccolo Rhian Kenney playing Danny Boy.
This Sunday at Bach, Beethoven and Brunch, the Pine Creek Community Band will perform at Mellon Park. The concert begins at 10:30 and is free. The President of the Pine Creek Community Band, Mary Ellen Dougall, stopped by WQED-FM to talk about the band and what they'll perform at Bach, Beethoven and Brunch.
Kevin Noe stopped by WQED-FM to talk about this year's Pittsburgh New Music Ensemble season.
Internationally renowned pianist Byron Janis was born in McKeesport Pa, went to elementary school in Squirrel Hill and his parents lived on Fifth Avenue in Pittsburgh to the end of their lives. Byron Janis talks about his just released cd Byron Janis On Tour with live performances recorded around the world in Toulon and Paris, New York, Havana, Connecticut, and other spots around the globe. Haydn, Chopin (including the pieces he discovered, one in a trunk marked “Old Clothes” near Paris), his Cy and By Paganini Variations taped at a home concert with Cy Coleman the jazz pianist and composer plus Byron’s own compositions for the stage. He also reminds listeners of his lifelong passion for Pirate baseball.