Latest in Classical Music

  This edition of Radio Collage features excerpts from the 2014 Interlochen Arts Camp "Collage" show, along with performances recorded at a few of the other concerts that take place during the Camp.  There's music by Mendelssohn, Duke Ellington and Brahms, a bit of Shakespeare, and original works by students from the Singer/Songwriter and Creative Writing programs.

  For this Radio Collage, we revisit performances from the recently completed Interlochen Arts Academy year.  There's lots of diversity, with music by Maurice Ravel, Sir Arthur Sullivan, and Dave Brubeck.  We'll also hear works by students from the Comparative Arts, Creative Writing and Singer-Songwriter programs.

  

Enso circles back!

Aug 16, 2014
Maureen Nelson, Richard Belcher, Melissa Reardon and John Marcus
Tim Burke

  The Enso String Quartet has returned to the Interlochen Adult Chamber Music Camp as guest artists-in-residence.  The ensemble’s name is derived from the Japanese Zen painting of the circle, which represents many things: perfection and imperfection, the moment of chaos that is creation, the emptiness of the void, the endless circle of life, and the fullness of the spirit. In addition to teaching during the  camp, Enso gives three recitals over the course of six days.  Still, they found time to drop by IPR's Studio A to perform excerpts from Five Pieces for String Quartet by Erwin Schulhoff.


Four guitars, one great sound!

Aug 14, 2014

  This summer, the Interlochen Arts Camp was once again filled with young artists, actors, writers, dancers, and, oh yes, musicians! Among them, a guitar quartet who paid a visit to IPR's Studio A.  Leonela Alejandro, Ria Modak, Grace Elmer and Luke Sunderland performed Kalimba by Jurg Kindle. For this performance, some of them put cloth under the strings near the guitar bridge to imitate the sound of the kalimba, also known as the "thumb piano".

Christopher Gruits, Executive Director of Interlochen Presents, stopped by Studio B this morning to chat about the upcoming 2014-2015 season. Highlights include: singer/songwriter Loudon Wainwright III, Aquila Theatre's Wuthering Heights,  Ailey II from the Alvin Ailey Dance Foundation, and the holiday classic, A Christmas Carol, from the Nebraska Theatre Caravan.

To hear the interview, featuring a track by singer/songwriter Wainwright (appearing at ICA in October), click "Listen," below.

Tickets go on sale soon - keep your eye on tickets.interlochen.org.  

After the jump - more highlights of the upcoming season, including video from Ailey II and A Christmas Carol.

Jenie Altruda has found a happy balance between a professional life and an artsy upbringing here at Interlochen. After growing up surrounded by various artistes and theatre types, ICA gives her the opportunity to combine business expertise with a love of the arts.

We spent a terrific hour together listening to some of her favorite music.  This is a cool, eclectic mix, with everything from favorites you might know and love (Bach Cello Suite, anyone?) to pieces new to IPR that may become new favorites (Goat Rodeo! Giacchino! Duckworth!).

Jenie had so much great music that we couldn't fit it all into our hour together on-air.  Never fear! You can still hear it all - click, "Read more," to see a list and enjoy more than two hours of Jenie's choices. Listen to our full conversation and hear the music in context in the streaming link, below.


Les Miserables is one of those "dream" shows for actors in musical theatre.  If you've never done it, you pray you'll be in it, and if you've been in it, you'll never forget it. This summer, Interlochen Arts Camp students had a chance to do the dream show with a dream team - Rick and Lynne Church.  Rick was the show's Musical Director and Conductor, and Lynne served as Vocal Coach for the young singers.  The delightful Churches have had fascinating careers (so far - more to come!) and brought all their expertise to the actors.  To us, they brought terrific music from Les Mis and music that Victor Hugo might have been listening to when he was writing his epic about the French Revolution. BONUS for those listening to the stream - Lynne shared a recording of her own performance in Pagliacci! (We've substituted Maria Callas on our Spotify playlist; click, "Read more." )

There's more to a Symphony Orchestra than musicians - somebody's got to keep everything ticking behind the scenes! Executive Director Krista Cooper helps keep the Traverse Symphony Orchestra running like clockwork.  Krista prefers to be behind the scenes (even though she's secretly an accomplished opera singer! Shhh...), but we managed to get her in front of a microphone, sharing some of her favorite music with us.  

Hear Krista and her music in the interview below, or click, "Read more," to listen all the music in one playlist.

  

The Cavani String Quartet came to the Interlochen Arts Camp this summer to work with the advanced string quartet program.  While they were on campus, they stopped by IPR's Studio A for a live performance. Here's an excerpt from Midnight Child by Charles G. Washington.  It's based on the spiritual Sometimes I Feel Like a Motherless Child , and mixes some of the music that Washington heard as he grew up: Gospel, Blues and Swing.


Deb Lake managed to eke out an hour before the Traverse City Film Festival and share some of her favorite film music with us.  It was probably the most time she'd spent sitting down in weeks. Deb's been the Executive Director of the TCFF since 2006 and has been a volunteer with the Festival since its very first year.  Film Festival is her Crunch Time, so we had a lovely breather, listening to some great music together. Don't worry if you missed it - we have it right here. 

Hear the music and conversation below, or click, "Read more," to listen to the playlist. 


The cast of Broadway's Next Hit Musical was on Interlochen's campus for a show, and brought us a real treat - our first ever entirely improvised Live from Studio A session! Cast members Rebecca Vigil, Rob Schiffman, Rob Grant and Eric March gave us a performance to remember.

Eric, Rebecca, Rob and Rob were great sports, and performed for us at what had to be an ungodly  hour of the morning for them. Since I was the only live person in the audience (a perk of hosting in Studio A!), I got to choose the song title (yay!).   At the end of the interview, please enjoy, "It's Early, and I'm In Love."

After the jump, learn more about BNHM and  hear a BONUS TRACK! - the cast dedicates an ode to IPR Studio A engineer, Brock Morman.
 


Violin Virtuosity: Stanislav Pronin

Jul 8, 2014

Violinist Stanislav Pronin paid a return visit to IPR's Studio A and gave a live performance of Nathan Milstein's challenging, "Paganiniana."  We asked Pronin what attracted him to Nathan Milstein's arrangement of works by Paganini. His answer? "It's just fun to play."

It's also a lot of fun to hear!

Brooklyn Rider takes the idea of the string quartet to a new level.  Already champions of new music and fresh approaches, the Brooklyn, NY-based group stretch the boundaries of the classic quartet, adding unusual instruments and other forms of art to the mix.  In their Studio A session, they treated us to terrific, high-energy performances of, "Doina Oltului," a Roma-inspired piece, and, "Ascending Bird," originally arranged for quartet and Persian Fiddle (kamancheh).
 


Chris Gruits, Executive Director of Interlochen Presents, is dropping by Classical IPR twice a week to give updates on upcoming events at the Interlochen Festival.

In today's chat, he fills us in about the upcoming WYSO concert featuring Guest Conductor Carlos Kalmar and Pianist Alessio Bax, and a visit from The Capitol Steps.

For information about all Interlochen Festival Events, visit: tickets. interlochen.org.
 


Well, this was a new one for Studio A:  a room full of musicians who can assemble and disassemble a saxophone and an M-16 rifle.  The US Airmen of Note, the premier jazz ensemble of the United States Air Force Band came by to play us some cool arrangements and chat about life as full-time military musicians.


Class of 2014: Walk of "Fame"

Jun 25, 2014

  This month, the focus is on Interlochen Arts Academy's class of 2014.  Among the works we'll hear: Debussy's "Prelude to the Afternoon of a Faun" performed by the Academy Orchestra, an excerpt from Ned Rorem's opera "Our Town" sung by soprano Sage DeAgro-Ruopp, and poet Sojourner Ahebee reads one of her own works.  We'll aslo hear some Durufle courtesy of organist Bryan Dunnewald, and cellist Daniel Blumhard performs a work written for him by classmate Tevan Goldberg.


Carol Jantsch is known for elevating tuba playing to performance art (she's performed Flight of the Bumblebee in full bee suit and advertised her first tuba CD with a rap video). She is also the first woman to hold a Principal Tuba Chair among major orchestras in the United States (in this case, the Philadelphia Orchestra). Jantsch is at Interlochen this week, teaching the Tuba and Trombone Institute.

Jantsch says she thinks of herself as a musician first, and a tuba player second, and she's interested in playing pieces not originally intended for the tuba.  She visited Studio A with accompanist Ellen Sommer-Bottorf and performed a wonderful rendition of Debussy's, Prelude to the Afternoon of a Faun.  If you think the tuba is nothing more than a background instrument that goes oom-pa-pa - you're in for an elegant surprise.


William VerMeulen has had a life full of connections to Interlochen.  His mother came here to attend Music Camp and play the cello in the 1940's, and later, was a participant in our Adult Chamber Music Camp.  He attended Interlochen as a Camper, and then later, as an Academy Student.  He even worked in food service in the cafeteria, and eventually spent three years as an Academy Horn Instructor.  "I've done," he says, " everything you could do at Interlochen, and now to be back is a thrill."


NMC Choir Director Jeffrey Cobb brought the Canticum Novum ensemble by Studio A for a sneak preview of the group's upcoming concert series.  The twenty-four singers, with pianist Peggy Johnson, performed a warm, spicy and modern tango, "Noche de Lluvia," by Sid Robinovitch.  They then followed up with a jazzified slice of Americana in an arrangement of, "Country Dances," by Ward Swingle.


Students from all over the world flock to Interlochen Arts Academy to study the arts in the northern Michigan woods.  Some of them are old hands at music or their chosen field, but new to the English language.

That's where Marvine Stamatakis comes in.  Marvine is the instructor of English as a Second Language at Interlochen, and uses all sorts of creative resources to help students feel comfortable speaking naturally in English.

Franco-American: Music From Ravel To Nestico

May 21, 2014

  Radio Collage has a significant French influence this time around.  We'll hear two works by Ravel, a suite by Milhaud, and an ancient tale written down in the 17th century by  Frenchman Charles Perrault - we know it today  as "Little Red Riding Hood".  To balance things a bit, there are two works written by Interlochen Arts Academy students Kendra Prat and Christopher Bell, along with a performance of  Sammy Nestico's "Freckle Face"  by the Arts Academy Jazz Ensemble.


Jeremy Laureta, Interlochen Senior and Viola major, dropped by Studio A to perform a selection from his recent Senior Recital.  Jeremy performed the balcony scene from Prokofiev's, "Romeo and Juliet." Susan Snyder provided piano accompaniment as Viola professor Renee Skerik listened proudly in the wings. We wish Jeremy all the best as he moves on to his next phase at the Manhattan School of Music!  

 

Chopin's Music Fills Studio A

May 5, 2014
Interlochen Arts Academy senior Grace (Jiyuan) Zhang
Tim Burke

Interlochen Arts Academy senior Grace (Jiyuan) Zhang recently visited IPR's Studio A to perform the third and fourth movements of Frederick Chopin's Piano Sonata in B-flat minor, Opus 35.   The third movement (known as the Funeral March) was written as Chopin's native Poland was being invaded.  Grace says "it was written for generations - for a country." Grace will continue her studies at the University of Michigan beginning this fall.

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

Good morning. I'm Steve Inskeep.

LIVE Wednesday 8pm, rebroadcast Saturday 8pm.

The most successful polemical art succeeds first as art. Benjamin Britten proved that with his War Requiem.

Pages