Feminine Fusion

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“Feminine Fusion” is a weekly radio program that highlights the influence of women in classical music. These are the women throughout history and into the present day who create, perform, and inspire. Composer/announcer Diane Jones of WCNY-FM in Syracuse, NY is your host, and every week showcases some of these remarkable women.

Women are the central, unifying focus of this series. It is important to note, however, that their influence is broad-ranging, crossing the boundaries of culture, race, and gender. Who can know what might have happened to the likes of Aaron Copland, Donald Byrd, or Quincy Jones had they not studied with Nadia Boulanger?

“Had you asked me 10 years ago if I would have introduced a program focused on women in music, I would have said ‘no.’ Growing up in a houseful of brothers, I was always treated as their equal,” says Jones. “But there is still gender bias in the music world. I am anxious for the time when we no longer separate composers from women composers, or conductors from women conductors.

Some of the individuals highlighted in this program entered the world of the arts knowing they faced opposition, and gathered their strength to face it head on. Others simply took to their chosen path, often unaware of the impact their actions would have. In every case, however, they have touched hearts and souls with their art.

Contact Diane Jones

Feminine Fusion

Diane Jones

Diane Jones is the host of Feminine Fusion, aired every week on WCNY-FM. An active composer, she has received commissions from nationally and internationally-recognized musicians and ensembles, as well as completing 5 residencies in Syracuse area schools, introducing young musicians to composition. Diane performs regularly with Samba Laranja and the Central New York Flute Choir, and her music has been featured on two SAMMY-award winning CDs. Follow Diane on Twitter (@ComposerJones) and Facebook (here or here) for more about her programming and her music.

Air Date Program Title Description
Dec 30 - Jan 5 Off We Go We are poised at the start of a new year. Here is some of the newest music by women.
Jan 6 - 12 Twos and Threes, Part 3 Performances from all-female duos and trios
Jan 13 - 19 Days of Old Works by women from the Baroque and before
Jan 20 - 26 Patchwork Quilt, Part XL No special theme, just wonderful works and performances by women
Jan 27 - Feb 2 Snow on Snow Works inspired by the snow, from gentle snowfall to swirling storms
Feb 3 - 9 Women of Color: Performers, Part 7 Performances by women of color throughout the years
Feb 10 - 16 Women of Color: Composers, Part 7 More works written by women of color
Feb 17 - 23 Women of Color: Hispanic & Latinx Musicians, Part 4 Performers with Hispanic and Latinx heritage
Feb 24 - March 1 One Life: Rhiannon Giddens The life and music of mold-breaking artist Rhiannon Giddens
  • S08 Ep34: Elemental Music, Part 4

    April 20, 2024

    “I hope the OCEAN CALLING series will help renew our connection with this vital life source and its vast, mysterious realms, and that we will hear the calls from the sea that we are one.”  – Meira Warshauer   Earth, air, fire, and water.  Our understanding of the four elements has changed over the centuries.  And still, they touch the artists’ heart, inspiring awe and creativity.   “Elemental Music, Part 4”   Judith Lang Zaimont:  falling drops (Rainshower) Janacek Philharmonic Orchestra; Neils Muus, conductor “Pure Cool (Water)” Sorel Classics 003 Meredith Monk:  Return to Earth, from ATLAS Musica Sacra; Richard Westenburg, director “Music Redefined” Catalyst 61878 Shulamit Ran:  East Wind Patricia Spencer, flute “Music by Shulamit Ran” Bridge 9052 Ruby Fulton:  Wind Telephone Heidi Radtke, saxophone “Convergence: Music for Saxophone & Fixed Media” Navona 6608 Elisabetta Brusa:  Firelights National Symphony Orchestra of the Ukraine; Fabio Mastrangelo, conductor “Elisabetta Brusa: Orchestral Works, Vol. […] Read More

  • S08 Ep33: On the Podium, Part 4

    April 13, 2024

    “The best conductors are the best listeners”  – Tom Service   Tom Service, the broadcaster, journalist and author of the fascinating study Music As Alchemy: Journeys with Great Conductors and their Orchestras, says this about conductors:  “They become a lightning rod of listening; a focus so that the players and the conductor can become something bigger than all of them – than all of us – at the same time as feeling fully realised as individuals.”  This week, women at the podium, leading the ensemble toward something bigger.   “On the Podium, Part 4” Greg Edmonson:  Uncharted II (main theme) Eímear Noone, conductor Danish National Symphony Orchestra “Gaming in Symphony” EuroArts 880242677013 Evan Ziporyn:  Impulse Control Tonya Mitchell-Spradlin, conductor Penn State University Wind Ensemble; Lee Hinkle, percussion “Modern American Percussion Concerti” Ravello Records 8101 Paul Huber:  Concerto for Dulcimer and Strings Lena-Lisa Wüstendörfer, conductor Swiss Orchestra “Swiss Dreams” Prospero Classical […] Read More

  • S08 Ep32: Sticks and Stones, Part 3

    April 6, 2024

    “Percussion is physical, as most instruments are.  The body must function well in order to play the instruments well.”  – Evelyn Glennie   There are certain characteristics that identify an instrument as a piano – a keyboard, pedals, etc.  Or a flute.  But what is “percussion?”  This episode shares works and performances from women playing a variety of instruments that all fall under that single, simple description.   “Sticks and Stones, Part 3” Nancy van de Vate:  Two for Two Jane Boxall, marimba “Chamber Music, Vol. IX” Vienna Modern Masters 2055 Juri Seo:  Sonata for Marimba and Vibraphone (excerpt) Arx Duo “Ambient Resonances” Origin Classical 33029 Meri Davitashvili, arr. Liana Pailodze Harron:  Khorumi Vesna Duo “Khorumi” Independent Nancy Galbraith:  Everything Flows Abby Langhorst, percussion Boston Modern Orchestra Project; Gil Rose, conductor “Everything Flows” BMOP 1096 Kevin Puts:  Marimba Concerto Ji Su Jung, marimba Baltimore Symphony Orchestra; Marin Alsop, conductor “Kevin […] Read More

  • S08 Ep31: Looking Home, Part 4

    March 30, 2024

    “I love the way some music suddenly takes you to the other side of Alice’s looking glass, in a kind of absurd, subtle, technicolor transition.”  – Caroline Shaw   We bring our global trek to a close with music from home.  Enjoy these works from women from the U.S. “Looking Home, Part 4”   Jennifer Higdon:  Sky Rising Palisade Trumpet Collective “Sojurn” Mark Records 57041 Jessie Montgomery:  Soul Force New York Youth Symphony; Mark Repper, conductor “Works by Florence Price, Valerie Coleman, and Jessie Montgomery” Avie 2503 Valerie Coleman:  Umoja: Anthem of Unity New York Youth Symphony; Mark Repper, conductor “Works by Florence Price, Valerie Coleman, and Jessie Montgomery” Avie 2503 Julia Wolfe:  Oxygen Jennifer Grim, flutes “Through Broken Time” New Focus Recordings 346 Caroline Shaw: Entr’acte Orchestre de Chambre de Lausanne: Joshua Weilerstein, conductor “American and English Orchestral Music” Claves 3091     Run time:  58:30 Feminine Fusion highlights […] Read More

  • S08 Ep30: Looking West, Part 4

    March 23, 2024

    “Challenges are what you feed off as a composer.”  – Charlotte Bray   This week we continue our trip around the world with a look to the West.  These are works firmly rooted in the western classical tradition, but the women creating them are making them their own.   “Looking West, Part 4” Lera Auerbach:  Amen, from 72 Angels Netherland Chamber Choir; Peter Dijkstra, conductor Raschèr String Quartet “Lera Auerbach: 72 Angels” Alpha 593 Charlotte Bray:  Zustände Mariani Klavierquartett “Charlotte Bray: Chamber & Solo Works” Alliance 6371 Dani Howard:  Symmetry Mainly Two “Live at Listenpony: Mainly Two” Listenpony 001 Christine Ott:  Pluie Christine Ott, ondes Martenot Mathieu Gabry, percussion “Time to Die” Bandcamp Dobrinka Tabakova:  Modètudes Marina Staneva, piano “Slavic Roots” Chandos 20251 Galina Ustvolskaya:  Clarinet Trio (1949) David Howard, clarinet; Johnny Lee, violin; Vicki Ray, piano “David Howard Plays Clarinet Works” Yarlung 78874   Run time:  58:30 Feminine Fusion […] Read More

  • S08 Ep29: Looking East, Part 4

    March 16, 2024

    “I have been influenced in my thinking by both west and east.” – Nelson Mandela We’re heading east now, to Asia, with music and performers from China, Japan, South Korea, and India.   “Looking East, Part 4” Bill Whelan:  Emerald Tiger Vanessa-Mae, violin “Choreography” Sony 90895 Chen Yi:  Shuo Ying Quartet “Dim Sum” Telarc 80690 Karen Tanaka:  Prismes Malmö Symphony Orchestra; Juni’chi Hirokami, conductor “Japanese Orchestral Music” BIS 490 Vilmos Montag:  Sonata for Double Bass and Piano Mikyung Sung, double bass Jaemin Shin, piano “Mikyung Sung: The Colburn Sessions” Modus Vivendi Media 2301 Sunji Hong:  Missa Lumen de lumine Trio Mediaeval “Trio Mediaeval – Stella Maria” ECM 4762031 Kala Ramnath: Aalap and Tarana Hilary Hahn, violin Cory Smythe, piano “In 27 Pieces: The Hilary Hahn Encores” Deutsche Grammophon 4791725   58:29   Feminine Fusion highlights the roles of women in classical music.  Host Diane Jones brings you stories and music of […] Read More

  • S08 Ep28: Looking South, Part 4

    March 9, 2024

    “The Antarctic voices revealed by these microphones were rich and surprising.”  – Cheryl E. Leonard We’re heading to the southern hemisphere this week, to hear music from Australia, New Zealand, Ethiopia, Venezuela – and from the Antarctic.  It’s a vast landscape of music.   “Looking South, Part 4” Vincenzo Bellini:  “Vaneggia! Il passo sgombrisi” from La straniera Pretty Yende, soprano Piero Pretti, tenor; Giuseppi Verdi Symphony Orchestra of Milan; Giacomo Sagripanti, conductor “Dreams” Sony Classical 88985430152 Emahoy Tsegué-Maryam Guèbrou:  Mother’s Love Maria Thompson Corley, piano “Soulscapes 2” MSR Classics 1744 Sally Greenaway:  Poems for Flute and Harp Sally Walker, flute; Emily Granger, harp “Something Like This” Avie 2626 Tabea Squire:  I Danced, Unseen New Zealand String Quartet “Notes from a Journey II” Atoll 289 Adina Izarra: Concerto for Flute and Strings “Pitangus Sulphuratus” (excerpt) Manuela Wiesler, flute Musica Vitae; Péter Csaba, conductor “Oiseaux Tendres” BIS 689 Cheryl E. Leonard:  White […] Read More

  • S08 Ep27: Looking North, Part 4

    March 2, 2024

    “I see music as a force of nature that can flood over a person and even change entire destinies.”  – Outi Tarkiainen   Let’s step out and take a trip around the world, to hear what’s going on with women in classical music.  Their inspiration comes from their homes, their hearts, and their travels.  So this week we travel North – even into the Arctic circle!   “Looking North, Part 4” Edvard Grieg, arr. Ben Palmer: Last Spring, Op. 33, No. 2 Eldbjørg Hemsing, violin Arctic Philharmonic; Christian Kluxen, conductor “Arctic” Sony Classical 19439936082 Ylva Q Arkvic:  No Comment Johannes Thorell, alto saxophone; Magnus Sköld, piano “Luxuria” Nosag 239 Cecilia Damström: Cura Pekka Kuusisto, violin; Joonas Ahonen, piano “Symmetria Pario: Creation” Yarlung Records 84165 Outi Tarkiainen: The Earth, Spring’s Daughter (excerpts) Virpi Räisänen,mezzo-soprano Lapland Chamber Orchestra; John Storgårds, conductor “The Earth, Spring’s Daughter/Saivo” Ondine Records 1353 Victoria Borisova-Ollas: Before the Mountains Were Born […] Read More

  • S08 Ep26: One Life – Margaret Bonds

    February 24, 2024

    “Music has to be human, and people have to like it; it has to move them spiritually and intellectually.”  – Margaret Bonds   Composer Margaret Bonds was an influential African American woman in the music world – and you probably don’t know her name.  On this episode, we look at the life and music of this talented Chicago native.   “One Life – Margaret Bonds”   Minstrel Man and Dream Variation, from Three Dream Portraits Text by Langston Hughes Icy Rene Simpson, soprano Artina McCain, piano “I, too” Longhorn Music Troubled Water Althea Waite, piano “Black Diamonds” Cambria 1097 Songs of the Seasons Texts by Langston Hughes Louise Toppin, soprano John B. O’Brien, piano “Ah! Love But a Day” Albany 385 The Ballad of the Brown King Texts by Langston Hughes Dessoff Choirs Dessoff Orchestra Malcolm J. Merriweather, conductor “The Ballad of the Brown King & Selected Songs” Avie 2413 The […] Read More

  • S08 Ep25: Women of Color: Hispanic & Latinx Musicians, Part 4

    February 17, 2024

    “Until the voice breathes life into the music, you are never quite sure what it will be.” – Samuel Barber to Martina Arroyo   Performances from Hispanic and Latinx musicians fill the hour! “Women of Color: Hispanic & Latinx Musicians, Part 4” Carlos Simon:  Between Worlds Amaryn Olmeda, violin “Songs for Our Times” Deutsche Grammophon Michael Brown:  Echoes of Byzantium Elena Urioste, violin Michael Brown, piano “Echoes – Works for violin and piano” BIS 2284 Camille Saint-Saëns:  Havanaise María Dueñas, violin Vienna Symphony Orchestra; Manfred Honeck, conductor “Beethoven and Beyond” Deutsche Grammophon Samuel Barber:  Andromache’s Farewell Martina Arroyo, soprano New York Philharmonic; Thomas Schippers, conductor “Samuel Barber, Thomas Schippers, New York Philharmonic” CBS/Sony 62837 Alberto Ginastera:  Danzas Argentinas (excerpts) Blanca Uribe, piano “Beethoven Sonatas No. 29 & 31; Ginastera – Danzas Argentinas” MSR Classics 1034 Juan Piñera:  Habanera No. 1 Niurka González, flute “Fantasías y Habaneras” Independent Georg Philip Telemann:  Fantasia No. 3 […] Read More

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