Amanda Sewell

Classical Music Host

Amanda Sewell is a musicologist who holds a Ph.D. in musicology from the Indiana University Jacobs School of Music. As a musicologist, Amanda researches the history, context, and style of music of many different periods and regions. Her research about music has appeared in textbooks, journals, and music encyclopedias, and she is a frequent presenter at academic music conferences all over the country. Amanda frequently contributes program notes for performances of classical music, including performances at Interlochen Center for the Arts.

When not in the studio at Interlochen Public Radio, Amanda works as an academic editor and consultant. Amanda lives in Traverse City with her spouse and two dogs.

Ruth Bader Ginsburg celebrated 25 years on the United States Supreme Court this year. A new album on the Cedille label is a tribute to Ginsburg's personal and professional life. 

The album "Notorious RBG in Song" includes art songs by five contemprary American composers. The music is performed by soprano Patrice Michaels and pianist Kuo-Hao Huang. Michaels also composed a song cycle on the album, "The Long View," which is based on Ginsburg's own writings.

 Violinist Lauren Pokorzynski is a graduate student at Texas Tech University. Lauren will be the soloist with the Benzie Area Symphony Orchestra this weekend on their “Love of Country” concert.

 

Metropolitan Museum of Art

Thanks to listeners in Northport, Wolverine, Lake City, Pierport and many other places for your requests this week.

1. Leroy Anderson, Clarinet Candy; Ensemble Vivant

2. Gustav Holst, A Moorside Suite; Eugene Corporon/North Texas Wind Symphony

3. Giacomo Puccini, O mio babbino caro; Renata Tebaldi

4. Dmitri Shostakovich, Symphony no. 9 (first movement); Eduardo Mata/Dallas Symphony Orchestra

5. Various composers, Yodeling Overtures; Mary Schneider

6. Philip Glass, Koyaanisqatsi (selections); Philip Glass Ensemble

Flutist Ana de la Vega has rediscovered a flute concerto by Josef Myslivecek that was previously thought to have been lost. She performs that concerto as well as two by Mozart on a new album on the Pentatone label.

On May 19, 2018 Prince Harry and Meghan Markle were wed in St. George's Chapel, Windsor Castle.  They are now known as the Duke and Duchess of Sussex. For the first time in history, all of the music, readings, blessings and vows were recorded and made available on streaming services. The physical album is now also available. 

Google Art Project

Thanks to listeners in Wolverine, Williamsburg, Cadillac, Watervale and many other places for your requests this week.

1. Aaron Copland, Lincoln Portrait; Gerard Schwarz/Seattle Symphony Orchestra/James Earl Jones

2. Marta Keen, Homeward Bound; Mack Wilberg/Orchestra at Temple Square/Mormon Tabernacle Choir/Bryn Terfel

3. Frank Erickson, Toccata for Band; Dennis Zeisler/Virginia Wind Symphony

4. Johann Georg Albrechtsberger, Concerto in E major for Jew’s harp and mandora (first movement); Hans Stadlmair/Munich Chamber Orchestra/Fritz Mayr

Audra McDonald has won Grammys, Emmys and six Tonys, which makes her American theater's most decorated performer. But she still has more to do - her newest album "Sing Happy" is her first solo recording with orchestra, and it features many songs that she has never recorded before.

Metropolitan Museum of Art

Thanks to listeners in Cheboygan, Ludington, Torch Lake, Traverse City and many other places for your requests this week.

1. Ludwig van Beethoven, Symphony no. 5 (finale); Roger Norrington/London Classical Players

2. Julie Giroux, Italian Rhapsody; Col. Larry Lang/United States Air Force Academy Band

3. Antonin Dvorak, Symphony no. 8 (first movement); Christoph von Dohnanyi/Cleveland Orchestra

4. John Lennon, Imagine; Royal Philharmonic Orchestra

5. Gustav Mahler, Symphony no. 3 (second movement); Zubin Mehta/Bavarian State Orchestra

 Pianist Christopher Harding is associate professor and chair of piano at the University of Michigan. He’ll be the soloist this weekend with the Great Lakes Chamber Orchestra.

 Neil Mueller is Associate Professor of Trumpet at Central Michigan University and a member of the Grand Rapids Symphony Orchestra. He will be performing this weekend as part of the Brandenburg Festival, which takes place Saturday night in Manistee and Sunday afternoon in Traverse City.

Eighth Blackbird

Interlochen Center for the Arts recently celebrated the American composer Steve Reich in a multi-day festival with performances of Reich's music by students and guest artists. Those guest artists included the Grammy Award-winning ensembles Third Coast Percussion and Eighth Blackbird.

USAF

  The United States Air Force Midwest Winds are currently taking an extensive tour of northern Michigan. In the next week, the quintet will perform in Manistee, Ludington, Cheboygan, Mackinac Island and Sault Ste. Marie. They are joined on this tour by their colleagues in the Liberty Quartet. 

Los Angeles County Museum of Art

Thanks to listeners in Beulah, Boyne City, Harbor Springs, Irons and many other places for your requests this week.

1. Ferde Grofé, On the Trail; John Williams/Boston Pops Orchestra

2. George Frederic Handel, Harpsichord Suite no. 5 in E major; Murray Perahia

3. John Novacek, Intoxication Rag (performed in IPR’s Studio A)

4. Ludwig van Beethoven, Symphony no. 6 (second movement); Kent Nagano/Montreal Symphony Orchestra

5. Gustav Mahler, Symphony no. 4 (third movement); Seiji Ozawa/Boston Symphony Orchestra

2018 is the bicentennial of the birth of the French composer Charles Gounod. Best known for his operas such as "Faust" and "Roméo et Juliette," Gounod also composed masses, symphonies and piano pieces. A new album by Roberto Prosseda celebrates Gounod's works for piano, including some that have never been recorded before. 

John Novacek is a multifaceted musician: he’s a pianist who performs regularly as a soloist, in chamber ensembles, and with orchestras, and he also composes. Novacek will be the soloist with the Traverse Symphony Orchestra this weekend in their season finale concert.

Interlochen Center for the Arts

This year, 43 students entered the concerto competition at Interlochen Arts Academy. A team of Interlochen Arts Academy faculty members narrowed the 43 initial entries to ten finalists, and the four winners were then selected by a judging panel made up of professional musicians. 

Lauren Whitaker

Flutist Lauren Whitaker is a senior at Interlochen Arts Academy, and she is a student of Nancy Stagnitta. Lauren is also the winner of the Encore Winds Youth Artist Competition, and she will perform with Encore Winds on their spring concert this Sunday. 

Fine Art America

Thanks to listeners in Irons, Kaleva, Branch, Northport and many other places for your requests this week.

1. Felix Mendelssohn, Wedding March from A Midsummer Night’s Dream; Eugene Ormandy/Philadelphia Orchestra

2. Sir William Walton, excerpts from Henry V; Andrew Litton/Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra

3. Martin Luther, A Mighty Fortress is Our God; James Litton/American Boy Choir

4. Benech & Dumont, Du gris; Baguette Quartette

5. Leonard Cohen, Hallelujah; Renee Fleming

Premiered in 1869, Edvard Grieg's Piano Concerto in A minor is one of the most popular piano concertos ever written. Grieg was just 24 years old when he wrote it. The month after the concerto's premiere, his toddler daughter died of viral meningitis, and his wife miscarried what would have been their second child. The Griegs would not have any more children.

Grieg's publisher asked him for another piano concerto for years, but the composer simply couldn't write one. All that he wrote was a fragment about 150 measures in length.

Photo by Karin Willman

Gary Gatzke is the principal double bassist of the Traverse Symphony Orchestra and the Great Lakes Chamber Orchestra. He is also the interim Executive Director of the Traverse Symphony Orchestra. Gatzke will be one of several soloists featured this weekend in the Great Lakes Chamber Orchestra’s Bach Family Festival.

Gary Gatzke recently visited Studio A at Interlochen Public Radio to play music by Dittersdorf, Handel and Saint-Saens. Hear the entire performance and interview below. 

Metropolitan Museum of Art

Thanks to listeners in Wolverine, Cedar, Manistee, Ludington and many other places for your requests this week. 

1. Paul Dukas, The Sorcerer’s Apprentice; Eugene Ormandy/Philadelphia Orchestra

2. Dietrich Buxtehude, Prelude and Fugue in F major; Hans Helmut Tillmanns

3. Peter Schickele, music from the original motion picture soundtrack of “Silent Running”

4. Victor Herbert, “Ah, sweet mystery of life”; Beverly Sills

5. Philip Sparke, Music of the Spheres; Kazufumi Yamashita/Osaka Municipal Symphonic Band

The premiere recording of Michael Torke's "Unconquered" celebrates the United States, the ideals of the Revolutionary War and the city of Saratoga, FL. The Saratoga Performing Arts Center commissioned the piece to celebrate its 50th anniversary. In response, Torke composed a piece inspired by the Battle of Saratoga.

Manitou Winds

The members of the chamber group Manitou Winds each play multiple instruments, which means that their concerts offer an infinite number of different combinations of sounds. Members Anne Bara, Sam Clark, Christina Duperron, Laura Hood and Jason McKinney recently visited Studio A at Interlochen Public Radio to perform some music and talk about their upcoming concert this weekend. Hear the entire performance and conversation below.

Violinist Er-Gene Kahng is a professor at the University of Arkansas and concertmaster of both the Fort Smith Symphony and the Arkansas Philharmonic Orchestra. She has also taught and performed at the Bay View Music Festival in northern Michigan.

Thanks to listeners in Harbor Springs, Traverse City, Kaleva, Cadillac and many other places for your requests this week.

1. Leonard Bernstein, Symphonic Dances from West Side Story (selections); Edo de Waart/Minnesota Orchestra

2. Giovanni Sgambati, Serenata Napoletana; Ennio Bolognini/Donald Kemp

3. Johann Sebastian Bach, Brandenburg Concerto no. 1; Jeannette Sorrell/Apollo’s Fire

4. Giuseppe Verdi, Va’ pensiero from Nabucco; Sir Georg Solti/Chicago Symphony Orchestra & Chorus

5. Greg McCallum, Hymn Quilt; performed by the composer

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