Classical Music

Interlochen Public Radio has the latest in classical music. You'll find recent local concerts, live performances from our very own Studio A, classical music for kids and so much more. 

Amanda Sewell

Every summer, Interlochen holds Institutes. These are week-long intensive studies that take place the week before camp begins. High school students come from around the world to study music, dance, theater and visual arts.

Two students from Interlochen's Piano Institute visited IPR's Studio A to perform. At Institute, they are studying with Michael Coonrod, Spencer Myer, Jerome Lowenthal and TJ Lymenstull.

Updated on Jun. 17 at 11:41 a.m.

Baltimore Symphony Orchestra (BSO) musicians, carrying signs reading "Fair Play for World Class Musicians," have begun picketing in front of their artistic home, Joseph Meyerhoff Symphony Hall, as the orchestra's management has locked out its players.

Every week, Great Lakes Concerts presents recent great performances from the Great Lakes region. Listen every Monday at 6 p.m. on Classical IPR.

This week's program

Giacomo Puccini: Aria, "O mio babbino caro" ("O dearest daddy") from "Gianni Schicchi"
Emily Douglass, soprano
Jackson Symphony Orchestra
Matthew Aubin, conductor
(Recorded at Potter Center, November 11, 2017)                                                                                                   

Music by Request playlist for June 15, 2019

Jun 15, 2019


1.      George Gershwin, An American in Paris, New York Philharmonic, Leonard Bernstein,

2.     Amilcare Ponchielli, Dance of the Hours, Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Claudio Abbado,

3.     W.A. Mozart, Sonata in F Major, Mitsuko Uchida

4.     Traditional Spiritual/Arrangement by Joseph Jennings, Didn’t It Rain, Chanticleer

5.     Jules Massenet, Va! Laisse couler mes larmes from Werther, Frederica von Stade

6.     L.V. Beethoven,  Second Movement from Symphony No. Six in F Major, London Classical Players, Roger Norrington

Interlochen Center for the Arts

This week on the Interlochen Collection, it’s a “titan” of an episode. We devote the entire hour to a performance of Gustav Mahler’s Symphony no. 1, the Titan, from 1987. Listen to the episode below.


Lawrence Brownlee performed works of Schumann and Sorey in the Dendrinos Chapel and Recital Hall in April of 2019.

Tenor Lawrence Brownlee recently presented a recital in Interlochen's Dendrinos Chapel and Recital Hall. Brownlee, along with collaborative pianist Myra Huang, performed "Dichterliebe" by Robert Schumann (text by Heinrich Heine) and "Cycles of My Being" by Tyshawn Sorey (text by Terrance Hayes).

Listen Friday at 8 p.m. on Classical IPR or any time below.

For the full texts and translations, see below. Click each image for a larger view.

Listen to the broadcast on Classical IPR on Saturday, June 15 at 1 p.m. ET.

Music By Request playlist for June 8, 2019

Jun 8, 2019

Thank you to listeners from Beaver Island, Kingsley, Harbor Springs, Old Mission Peninsula, Empire and Richmond, Virginia. 

Interlochen Center for the Arts

On this edition of The Interlochen Collection, it’s a trip to the ballet. We’ll hear Russian, French and American ballet excerpts and suites. Listen to the entire episode below.



In the opening scene of Pavarotti, the new documentary by director Ron Howard, the popular tenor travels deep into the Amazon jungle in search of an old opera house where the great Enrico Caruso may have once sung.

The building is shuttered, but because he's Luciano Pavarotti the door is unlocked for him to belt out a few honeyed notes from the stage. His fabulous voice soars into the vast emptiness of the auditorium.

Yolanda Kondonassis is one of the leading harpists in the world today. Ward Stare is the music director of the Rochester (NY) Philharmonic Orchestra.

Kondonassis and Stare recently collaborated on the world premiere performance and recording of a new harp concerto by Pulitzer Prize- and Grammy Award-winning composer Jennifer Higdon

Note: NPR's First Listen audio comes down after the album is released. However, you can still listen with the Spotify and Apple playlists at the bottom of the page.

Listen to the broadcast on Classical IPR on Saturday, June 8 at 1 p.m. ET.

Classical IPR in Concert features the Traverse Symphony Orchestra this week.

The program from March 2019 includes Moussorgsky's Night on Bald Mountain, Tchaikovsky's Symphony No. 5 and Prokofiev's Piano Concerto No. 2 with guest soloist Ralph Votopek. Kevin Rhodes conducts.

Tune in Friday at 8:00 p.m. or listen below at any time.

On Wednesday, June 5, the nationally syndicated classical music program Performance Today will feature music performed and recorded at Interlochen.

Music by Request playlist for June 1, 2019

Jun 1, 2019

Thanks to listeners in Ann Arbor, Petoskey, Baltimore, Lexington and many more for your requests this week!

1. Carl Nielsen – Helios Overture, Sakari Oramo, Finnish Radio Symphony Orchestra

2. Aaron Copland – Fanfare for the Common Man, Antal Dorati, Detroit Symphony Orchestra

3. J. S. Bach – Toccata and Fugue in D minor – Canadian Brass

On this edition of The Interlochen Collection, we take a look at the career of hornist, composer and orchestrator Brad Warnaar. His playing and orchestrations have appeared in hundreds of films.

We'll hear his performance from 1967 when he won the Interlochen Arts Academy student concerto competition. We'll also hear his daughter Clara's performance from when she won the Interlochen Arts Academy student concerto competition in 2008.

Listen to the entire episode below.

In a surprising announcement Thursday, the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra abruptly cancelled its summer 2019 lineup of concerts.

Kids Commute - Request Week! Friday

May 31, 2019

Happy Friday!  It’s the final day of Request Week on Kids Commute from Interlochen Public Radio.  All week long, we’ve been celebrating a fantastic school year by letting our listeners choose the music for the week.  We’ve heard some film music, a piano piece that’s a favorite of classical music fans everywhere, and music written for orchestra.  Today, Noah has chosen a piece that’s very appropriate for the end of the school year. “Pomp and Circumstance,” is a military march composed by Sir Edward Elgar.

This month in Tulsa, Okla., opera singer Lucia Lucas made her U.S. debut. She also made history.

At the Tulsa Opera, Lucas sang the title role in Mozart's Don Giovanni. Mozart's character is a ruthless, macho womanizer. Lucas is a transgender woman with a rich baritone voice and is the first known trans woman to sing a principal role on an American opera stage. In a conversation with NPR's Ari Shapiro, Lucas said she doesn't want her performances to be entirely defined by this historical marker.

Classical IPR and Horizon Books are co-hosting another classical music open mic event! Join us Sunday, June 23 at 2 p.m. on the River Level (downstairs) of the Traverse City Horizon Books location.

Classical IPR’s Amanda Sewell will emcee the event, and other IPR staff will be on hand, too. It’s a great opportunity to hear some classical music performed by your friends and neighbors in a relaxed atmosphere.

Kids Commute - Request Week! Thursday

May 30, 2019

It’s Request Week on Kids Commute from Interlochen Public Radio!  The Kids Commute team thought it would be great to celebrate the end of the school year by putting the Kids Commuters in charge of selecting the music for this week.  So far, we’ve heard two pieces of film music chosen by Brendan and Ruth. For yesterday’s episode, Uma chose, “Also Sprach Zarathustra,” by German composer Richard Strauss.  Kids Commuter, Kelsey, has requested a piece of piano music for today’s show. In fact, it’s one of the most popular pieces of piano music in all of classical music.

Art by Glenn Wolff

David Holland and Crispin Campbell wanted to bring all six of Johann Sebastian Bach's Brandenburg Concertos to northern Michigan for a long time. They recently accomplished this goal with the region's first-ever Brandenburg Festival.

Kids Commute - Request Week! Wednesday

May 29, 2019

Welcome back to Request Week on Kids Commute from Interlochen Public Radio.  All week long, we’re playing music chosen by our listeners. So far we’ve heard music from the films, “Godzilla,” and “The Lord of the Rings:  The Fellowship of the Ring.” Today’s request comes from Kids Commuter, Uma, who has chosen, "Einleitung", from “Also Sprach Zarathustra,” by German composer Richard Strauss.  Kate Botello will translate the title, give us some information about the composer, and the piece itself. We’ll also hear ways in which the musical theme has been used in popular culture.

Kishi Bashi's "Summer of '42" is a love song inspired by and set in one of the darker chapters of American history: the internment of Japanese-Americans after the bombing of Pearl Harbor. "What are the things you wanted / The same as anyone," the songwriter and multi-instrumentalist sings. "Just a hand to hold a little / After all is said and done."