Keep in touch with upcoming musical events as local, regional, national, and international musicians and artists visit the Classic FM studios. Interviews and live performances inform and entertain you! Follow WCNY on Facebook and Twitter to learn of upcoming Live at WCNY Radio Events, with host Diane Jones.
Live at WCNY – On the Radio!
Diane Jones Diane Jones is your mid-day host weekdays from 10 am to 2 pm. 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, the Central New York Flute Choir, and the 315 Ensemble. Her music has been featured on two SAMMY-award winning CDs. Follow Diane on Twitter (@ComposerJones) and Facebook (PetDragonMusic) for more about her programming and her music.
The Geneva Music Festival is in its final week, and we had a chance to chat with some of the artists about the last few concerts, how they came to be part of the festival, and heard a little about what they have coming up next. Listen to GMF Founder and Artistic Director Geoffrey Herd (violin), Clara Lyon (violin); Tanner Menees (viola), Hannah Collins (cello), and Anna Petrova (piano).
The Geneva Music Festival website is available here.
The Cayuga Chamber Orchestra rounds out it’s chamber series next weekend with a program of “Iberian Enchantment.” We spoke to CCO Principal Oboe John Lathwell about the concert, the story of Farrenc’s Nonet, blind auditions, and more.
Information about the Cayuga Chamber Orchestra is available here.
The month-long Geneva Music Festival opens this weekend, and Artistic Director Geoffrey Herd joined us to talk about the season, the artists, and the inspiration for this year’s theme, “Gods, Myths, and the Divine.”
You can view the Geneva Music Festival website here.
Octavio Más-Arocos, Music Director – Clinton Symphony
The Clinton Symphony Orchestra closes out their season with a concert of “Heroes and Fairy Tales.” Maestro Octavio Más-Arocas spoke to us about this concert, and the myriad of ways we experience music. We also learned more about how he decided to become a conductor, and the lessons he learned from Maestro Kurt Masur.
Learn about the Clinton Symphony Orchestra of the Mohawk Valley here.
Symphoria is wrapping up their 10th season. To mark that anniversary, and to give us a look into the coming season, violinist and Board of Trustees member Sonya Stith Williams stopped into the studio. Not only did she tell us about the exciting concerts and guests, she shared her joy in playing with this orchestra.
More about Symphoria can be found at their website.
Jeffrey Siegel is returning to Utica to wrap up this season of his Keyboard Conversations with “Mozart and Friends.” We spoke to Jeffrey about the concert, some of the people who have influenced him, and he gave us a peek into next season’s offerings.
The Keyboard Conversations website is available here.
Cornelia Sommer is Principal Bassoon for the Cayuga Chamber Orchestra, and this weekend she takes center stage for with “Ciranda das sete notas,” the bassoon concerto by Hector Villa-Lobos. Cornelia and Interim Music Director Grant Cooper shared their insights into the piece and the rest of the concert, and talked about the world travels they’ve enjoyed in their careers.
Information about the Cayuga Chamber Orchestra is available here.
Ying Quartet, l-r: Janet Ying (violin), Phillip Ying (viola) new first violinist Robin Scott, and David Ying (cello), in Wolk Atrium outside Hatch Hall at Eastman Theatre, Eastman School of Music March 23, 2015 // photo by J. Adam Fenster / University of Rochester
The Cooperstown Summer Music Festival opens its 25th Anniversary Season with the Ying Quartet: American Made. Festival founder and artistic director Linda Chesis and David Ying, cello, joined us to talk about the concert, the joys and rewards of both familiar and unfamiliar music, and the energy of a live concert.
More from the Cooperstown Summer Music Festival is available here.
This weekend, Symphoria brings some of their own musicians to the front of the orchestra. Principal trombone Ben Dettleback and percussionist Ernest Muzquiz came to the studios to talk about the works they’re playing (and that Ernest wrote!), as well as telling us what a typical week is for an orchestra musician.
More about Symphoria is available on their website.
The studio was filled with laughter when Maestro Christian Capocaccia (Artistic Director – Syracuse Opera) and Robert Mellon (“Figaro”) came in to talk about this week’s performance of Mozart’s “The Marriage of Figaro.” They gave some insight into putting this fast-paced masterpiece together, with laughter and tenderness from every performer. They also shared their favorite lines uttered by Figaro himself!
Michelle Merrill is the guest conductor this weekend with two Spark concerts by Symphoria. Michelle stopped into the studios during a break in rehearsals to talk about the concert, and about her career as a conductor.
The Auburn Chamber Orchestra wraps up their 2022-23 season with “The Magic of Movies and Musicals.” Music Director Victor Vallo came to the studios to tell us about the concerts, the orchestra, and give us some insight into the orchestra and the musicians. He also talked about his first season with the orchestra, and what is in store for next year.
Information about the Auburn Chamber Orchestra is available here.
The Cayuga Chamber Orchestra continues it’s season with the next chamber music series, Eastern Bloc, coming up this weekend. Clarinetist and CCO Managing Director Sarah Chandler spoke to Diane Jones about the concert, the joys of playing in chamber groups with her fellow orchestra musicians, and even gave us a hint of what’s to come next season.
More about the Cayuga Chamber Orchestra is available on their website.
Jennifer Frautschi, violin; Jon Manasse, clarinet; & Jon Nakamatsu, piano
Three amazing musicians are coming to the Syracuse Friends of Chamber Music series this weekend. The Frautschi-Manasse-Nakamatsu Trio have a marvelous program in store, and clarinetist Jon Manasse and pianist Jon Nakamatsu spoke to us about the concert, the joys of playing together, and also gave us some insight into the benefits and challenges of competitions.
Find out more at the Syracuse Friends of Chamber Music website here.
Bones East in the WCNY Classic FM Performance Studio
It was not quite 76 trombones, but we did have eight members of Bones East in the studios to share some music and tell us about several concerts coming up in honor of their 40th anniversary season. We also talked to composer-in-residence Tom Camp about writing for the ensemble, and conductor Bill Harris about the marvelous sound the group makes together.
Composer Anthony R. Green has been giving lectures and workshops this week as part of the Syracuse Symposium focus on “Repair.” His visit culminates this weekend with a concert of works, presented by Syracuse Symposium and the Society for New Music. He stopped into the studio to talk about his music, the importance of social justice, and give some insight into how to listen.
Pianist Anna Polonsky and cellist Peter Wiley are performing at the next Chamber Music Society of Utica concert this weekend. They joined us to chat about the concert, their collaboration, and the joys of music in their lives.
The Chamber Music Society of Utica website is available here.
The Syracuse Friends of Chamber Music concerts continue this weekend with Hub New Music. Founder and flutist Michael Avitabile shared his insight into the works they’re playing (including a world premiere), the excitement of commissioning new works, and how the ensemble has evolved over the past 10 years.
Information about the Syracuse Friends of Chamber Music is available here.
And learn more about Hub New Music at their website.
Sean O’Loughlin Principal Pops Conductor – Symphoria
Conductor Sean O’Loughlin leads Symphoria in the next concert of the Pops series – “Fantasia of Dance.” Sean shared the joy of bringing this production, in collaboration with the Syracuse City Ballet, Dance Center North, and the Ballet and Dance Center. He also talked about his work with schools, and a special concert at the Hollywood Bowl.
It’s a special treat to hear a concerto for violin and viola, and that’s what the Cayuga Chamber Orchestra is bringing to the stage this weekend. Soloists Paul Neubauer, viola, and Christina Bouey, violin, spoke to mid-day host Diane Jones about the concert and the joy of playing this work. They also shared a few memorable moments from performances past.
Information about the Cayuga Chamber Orchestra is available here.
The Evolution of the Arm, an innovative quartet based in Buffalo, is coming to Syracuse next week during their Telepathic Tour. They have partnered with the 315 Ensemble as part of the 315 Presents series. All the ensemble members, as well as 315 founder and artistic director Chris Cresswell, joined in a conversation about the ensemble, the innovative recording process for their CDs, and the excitement and exhilaration of music created in the moment.
More about The Evolution of the Arm is available here.
As part of their residency at Ithaca College, the Ulysses Quartet is giving a recital on Saturday evening. It’s a marvelous mix of familiar favorites and new works, and the members of the quartet spoke to mid-day host Diane Jones about the program, their commitment to sharing the music of underserved composers, and gave us insight into the benefits for students and ensembles during a residency.
Information about the Ulysses Quartet is available here.
Symphoria’s Casual series continues this weekend, with a very special guest artist – lutenist Michael Leopold. It’s an opportunity to hear Vivaldi’s Lute Concerto in D Major in the instrumentation for which it was composed. Michael and Maestro Lawrence Loh had a chance to tell us about this opportunity – a first for Maestro Loh with Symphoria – as well as the rest of the music on the program. And they spoke of that moment when the music moves you in a new way.
The Cayuga Chamber Orchestra continues it’s chamber series this weekend with a talented quartet of musicians from the orchestra. Violist Anthony Bracewell joined mid-day host Diane Jones to talk about the concert, the joys of playing in the ensemble, and the marvelous instrument he’ll be playing for the concert.
More information on this and other Cayuga Chamber Orchestra concerts available here.
Caroline Sheridan Artistic Director – Syracuse City Ballet
Syracuse City Ballet brings “Cinderella” to the stage this weekend – at long last! SCB Artistic Director Caroline Sheridan came to the studios to talk about the ballet, the story of it’s return, and to look toward the future. She also gave us some insight into the life of a dancer, and the work they put in every day.
Information about Syracuse City Ballet is on their website!
Something a bit different! We had an early start to Fresh From the Wrapper this week, when Ken Meyer came to the studios to give us a first listen to his brand new CD. He gave some insight into how the pieces fell into place, and the joys of collaborating with the composers and vocalists to create the music. And we got to hear several tracks (with examples included here).
Schola Cantorum of Syracuse is marking the “Twilight of the Medieval Motet” in concert this Sunday. Music Director Barry Torres spoke to us about the concert, the changes in the way music was composed, and gave us some insight into how the ensemble needs to learn a new way of creating harmonies.
More about this concert and the complete season at the Schola Cantorum of Syracuse website.
The Ulysses Quartet is coming to the Chamber Music Society of Utica this weekend. This remarkable ensemble has been earning accolades and awards since it was formed in 2015. Violinist and founding member Christina Bouey spoke to mid-day host Diane Jones about the concert, the genesis of finding their name, and shared the mission of the Ulysses Quartet Foundation.
Information about the Ulysses Quartet is at their website.
More about the Chamber Music Society of Utica is available here.
Pianists Alessio Bax and Lucille Chung are the guest soloists for this weekend’s “Romantic Encounters” concert with Symphoria. This husband and wife duo are presenting not one, but two concertos with the orchestra, from another husband and wife – Robert and Clara Schumann. They spoke to mid-day host Diane Jones about the concert, the duo, and even shared their thoughts on special memories from past – and future – performances.
Chelsea Opera is bringing a world premiere to Syracuse! “Puccini” is a new play by Garrett August Heater composer Giacomo Puccini, with his music helping to tell the story of his life and loves. Chelsea Opera co-founder and President Leonarda Priore and actor Ed Mastin (Puccini) came to the WCNY studios to talk about this new production, and shared some rehearsal performances to whet your appetite.
Pianist Michelle Cann joins Symphoria this weekend for their “Journey of Rediscovery.” Michelle will be playing a rediscovered piano concerto from Florence Price. She stopped into the studios to chat about the concerto, the importance of Price as a composer and historical figure, and share some stories and a few laughs.
Symphoria welcomes guest conductor Moon Doh for the next Casual Series concert this weekend. Moon paused in his travels to chat with mid-day host Diane Jones about the concert, his background, and what makes this performance of Beethoven’s Symphony No. 6 so special.
The Chamber Music Society of Utica season continues with a performance from the Zephyros Winds. We spoke to Marianne Gythfeldt, clarinet, and Saxton Rose, bassoon, about the concert, the repertoire, and the joys of working together.
More from the Chamber Music Society of Utica here.
Julie Pretzat, Artistic Director Syracuse Vocal Ensemble
The Syracuse Vocal Ensemble is giving not one, but two performances this weekend, all in honor of Twelfth Night. Artistic Director Julie Pretzat stopped into the studios to talk about the program, and the excitement of finding just the right works to include. And – this is the 50th anniversary season of SVE. Julie spoke of the special feeling that brings, and told us of one of the members who has been singing with the ensemble from the start!
Information about the Syracuse Vocal Ensemble is available here.
Grant Cooper Interim Music Director Cayuga Chamber Orchestra
Grant Cooper is conducting the Holiday Celebration this weekend with the Cayuga Chamber Orchestra, including a side-by-side performance with the CCO Youth Orchestra and CCO Youth Concerto Competition winner, cellist Jason Jang. Grant spoke to us about the concert, the importance of these side-by-side concerts, and even gave us some insight how conducting gives him insight to help in his compositions.
More about the Cayuga Chamber Orchestra concert is available here.
**Please note – the organ mini-concert mentioned in this interview will be taking place after the Messiah Sing!, not before.**
After a 2-year hiatus, the Zion Episcopal Church in Rome is hosting their 34th Messiah Sing! Zion organist Erick Kroll came to the studios to talk about the return of this popular event, and how the public can not only listen, but sing as well!
Information about this event is available by e-mail to ZionChurch@twcny.rr.com
TAKE3 is not your typical piano trio. They are coming to the MWPAI Institute this weekend, and founder/violinist Lindsay Deutsch took some time before hitting the road to chat with mid-day host Diane Jones about the group – how it evolved, their approach to performance, and the incredible touring schedule they maintain.
Victor Vallo, music director of the Auburn Chamber Orchestra, came to the studios to talk about the holiday concert this weekend. He shared his ideas for choosing the works for each concert, and spoke of the incredible support the orchestra gets from it’s board members. He also talked about the importance of music in bringing a community together.
More from the Auburn Chamber Orchestra is available here.
The first concert of the 315 Ensemble’s 2022-23 season is coming up this weekend! On the program is a world premiere of a newly commissioned work from composer Ed Ruchalski. Ed and 315 founder and artistic director Chris Cresswell came to the WCNY studios to talk about that piece, as well as the rest of the music on the concert. They also talked about what goes into the sound worlds they create with their music.
The 315 Ensemble presents trumpeter Andy Kozar in concert this weekend, performing new works for trumpet and electronics. Andy and 315 Ensemble founder/artistic director Chris Cresswell came to the studios to talk about the concert, and share a taste of the music from the concert program. They also shared their ideas on listening to new music, as well as collaborations between composer and performer.
In time for the holiday season, and a great way to experience opera for all ages, Syracuse Opera will be presenting Giancarlo Menotti’s “Amahl and The Night Visitors” on Friday evening, December 16th. Originally composed as a children’s opera for television broadcast, this production includes a new face to the company – guest conductor Lindsay Kate Brown. Lindsay, along with Christian Capocaccia and John Rozzoni from Syracuse Opera and Tri-Cities Opera, stopped into the studio for a fun and joy-filled conversation about the opera, as well as the expanding opportunities for artists to come to the region to learn and grow in new directions.
Information about Amahl and The Night Visitors can be found at the Syracuse Opera website, here.
Richard Elliott, Principal Organist – Tabernacle Choir at Temple Square
The Syracuse Chapter of the American Guild of Organists is presenting a concert by Dr. Richard Elliott, Principal Organist for the Tabernacle Choir at Temple Square. Richard and Ben Merchant from Kerner & Merchant came to the Classic FM studios to talk about the concert, as well as the wonderful organs Richard has been able to play. And we heard about his connection to PBS and the Sesame Street Muppets!
More about this and future organ concerts is available at the Syracuse AGO website, here.
Allan Kolsky, Principal Clarinet with Symphoria, is the soloist this weekend for the opening concert of the Casual series. Allan stopped into the Classic FM studios to chat about the Copland Clarinet Concerto, as well as the other great performances coming up with Symphoria this season. And we even learned a bit about his “Faux Faulkner” prize.
Find out more about this concert and the rest of the season at the Symphoria website, here.
The Syracuse Diocese Festival Chorus is preparing a concert of the St. Cecilia Mass by Charles Gounod for this weekend. Conductor Peter Ciarelli and participant Frank Schultz came to the Classic FM studios to talk about this work, and the wonderful ensemble that has been assembled especially for this performance.
The concert will be Sunday, November 20 at 2:00pm at The Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception, 259 E. Onondaga Street, Syracuse.
The Cayuga Chamber Orchestra is premiering a brand new work they commissioned from composer Sally Lamb McCune. Diane Jones spoke to Sally and music director Grant Cooper from CCO Ithaca about the piece, and the importance of bringing new and unfamiliar works to the concert stage.
Find out more about The Cayuga Chamber Orchestra here.
Syracuse Opera rehearsal for No Cowards In Our Band
Syracuse Opera is heading to the Syracuse City High Schools, to bring performances of “No Cowards In Our Band” to the students. Gregory Shepard, Christian Capocaccia, and John Rozzoni came to the Classic FM studio to talk about the impact and the importance of performances for youngsters. And we heard excerpts from the 2021 production of “No Cowards In Our Band” from Syracuse Opera and WCNY.
Oswego Opera Theater is preparing a historic performance this weekend – the first fully staged production of “The Golden Cage,” which tells the stories of Holocaust refugees who came to Fort Ontario in Oswego during World War 2. Juan LaManna and Benjamin Spierman, co-artistic directors of Oswego Opera, spoke about the origins of the work, and it’s recent rediscovery. The history, and the hope that remained with the refugees, is a powerful message.
More information available at the Oswego Opera Theater website, here.
The Society of Composers Region II Conference is coming to Syracuse University this weekend, including lectures and concerts. Loren Loiacono, composer (Syracuse University), and Heather Buchman, conductor (Hamilton College) came to the studios to talk about the music, the events, and the incredible collaboration of arts organizations in the area. We also heard excerpts from several of the works being performed on the opening concert Friday night.
Jeffrey Siegel returns to Utica with “Immortal Impromptus,” the second concert of this season of Keyboard Conversations. He spoke to mid-day host Diane Jones about the program, and how the events of the composers lives affected the music they created. he also told us why he loves coming to Central New York to perform.
Internationally renowned organist Marek Kudlicki is coming to Syracuse for a performance and lecture at the Basilica of the Sacred Heart this weekend. Marek and Frank Schultz, music director at the Basilica, stopped into the Classic FM studios to chat about the music, the instrument, the history, and even favorite – and most challenging – organs they have played.
More from the Basilica of the Sacred Heart is available here.
Syracuse Opera and Tri-Cities Opera continue their collaborations with a special event, “Madness and The Medium.” Giancarlo Menotti’s “The Medium” is the cornerstone for an immersive performance that takes place far beyond just the stage. Director Jennifer Williams, Christian Capocaccia (Artistic Director – Syracuse Opera), and John Rozzoni (General Director – Tri-Cities Opera) came to the Classic FM studios to talk about this exciting performance (perfect for the Hallowe’en season!), as well as the continued collaboration between these two companies.
Julie Pretzat, Artistic Director Syracuse Vocal Ensemble
The Syracuse Vocal Ensemble will be presenting two performances of “Healing & Hope” this weekend. Artistic Director Julie Pretzat stopped into the studios to chat about this concert, which honors “our journey through a pandemic, racial and political violence, and world unrest.” She shared some of the texts the ensemble will be singing, which she hopes touches your hearts.
Victor Vallo, conductor Syracuse Chamber Orchestra Auburn Chamber Orchestra
Victor Vallo is music director of both the Syracuse Chamber Orchestra (now in it’s second season) and the Auburn Chamber Orchestra (in it’s 36th season). Victor stopped by the studios to talk about two concerts coming up from these two orchestras. He gave us insight into the music and musicians as well.
More about the Syracuse Chamber Orchestra is available here.
Marietta von Bernuth with the Chamber Music Society of Utica stopped into the Classic FM studios today to tell us all about the upcoming concert season. She talked about the outstanding artists coming to the stage, as well as the outreach efforts of CMSU for students and refugees. You’ll want to learn more about them!
Find out about the Chamber Music Society of Utica here.
Flutist Linda Chesis Founder/Artistic Director – Cooperstown Summer Music Festival
The Cooperstown Summer Music Festival season finale is coming up this weekend! Festival founder and artistic director Linda Chesis spoke to mid-day host Diane Jones about the festival and bringing these artists to the area. Not to mention – the festival celebrates its 25th season next year! Linda has invited listeners to let her know what they’d like to hear in the coming anniversary season – perhaps a returning artist, or a program theme that you’d love to hear.
Find out about the Cooperstown Summer Music Festival here.
And send your ideas for next year’s festival to info@CooperstownMusicFest.org.
The Juilliard String Quartet is opening the new season for the Syracuse Friends of Chamber Music – their 25th appearance with that organization! Program director Travis Newton stopped into the studios to chat with us about the upcoming season and the return to in-person concerts. He also gave us some insight into what it takes to plan a season of chamber music!
More about the Syracuse Friends of Chamber Music is available here.
Caroline Sheridan Artistic Director – Syracuse City Ballet
The new season with Syracuse City Ballet kicks off this weekend with their production of Stravinsky’s “The Firebird.” Artistic Director Caroline Sheridan stopped into the studios to talk about the production, and other exciting things in store for the ballet. She also shared her journey as she pursued her lifelong goal of choreographing and artistic direction.
Information about the Syracuse City Ballet can be found here.
The Skaneateles Library Guitar Series opens the new season this weekend with a performance from guitarist Ken Meyer. Ken stopped into the Classic FM studio to talk about this weekend’s concert, his background in rock, and give us some insights into composing for guitar. And he treated us to a bit of music along the way.
More about the Skaneateles Library concert series is available here.
Charles Gounod By Bayard Bertall – Bibliothèque nationale de France, département Musique, PD-US
Coming in November – a concert presentation of Charles Gounod’s “St. Cecilia’s Mass” with soloists Dominick Corbaccio, Julia Ebner, and David Rudari. Megan Fallon and Dominick Corbaccio stopped into the Classic FM studios to talk about the concert, and how to become part of the performance. They are hoping to have 100 choir members – so listen now to learn more! (And keep in mind – rehearsals start on Sunday, 9/25!)
You can e-mail Megan Fallon for more information on rehearsals and this performance here: mfallon@StanleyLawOffices.com.
The new season of Keyboard Conversations is coming to Utica this weekend! Jeffrey Siegel, creator of Keyboard Conversations, spoke to mid-day host Diane Jones about this weekend’s concert of “American Pianistic Treasures.” He gave us a glimpse into the music and stories he’ll be sharing. He also was kind enough to present our Number 1 on the Listener Favorite countdown, and introduce his own recording of the work!
Kumara Music (L-R: Sean Harkness, Shem Gibboury, Samite) photo by M.Barletta
Kumara Music presents “heart-centered music” in a concert coming up this weekend. This trio of talented musicians stopped into the Classic FM studios to talk about the concert, and the philosophy behind their trio and how they are working to help with healing through music. We also enjoyed a sample of some of the music they’ll be performing and including on their debut album.
Coming up this Sunday, pianists Ida Tili-Trebicka and Tina Toglia will be performing a concert of “Trailblazing Women,” music for piano four-hands by women composers of the past 4 centuries. Ida and Tina stopped into the Classic FM studios to talk about the concert, and to share just a taste of the works they have in store.
You can learn more about the concert here, or by calling the parish office at (315) 655-9063.
The Imani Winds open the 2022 Cooperstown Summer Music Festival
After a 2-year hiatus, the Cooperstown Summer Music Festival is back! Founder and Artistic Director Linda Chesis spoke to us about the return of the festival, and the excitement of live performance. And all of the artists originally scheduled for last year’s festival are back this year, so no need to miss a minute!
You can learn more about the Cooperstown Summer Music Festival here.
Pianist Aaron Wunsch (L) and cellist Julia Bruskin, Co-Artistic Directors of the Skaneateles Festival
The Skaneateles Festival is poised for a great season, and the concerts and special programs are exciting! Festival co-artistic directors Aaron Wunsch & Julia Bruskin once again came to the studios to give us a preview of the season, and share some past performances from artists who have come back to the lake once again!
All the details about the Skaneateles Festival, including the musicians, special programs and gatherings, can be found here.
Schola Cantorum of Syracuse hosts an early music workshop every summer, which concludes with a concert from the participants open to the public. After a 2-year hiatus, the workshop has resumed, and we had workshop director Dr. Kristina Boerger and Schola Cantorum founder and artistic director Barry Torres chat with us about this year’s concert.
The Syracuse Chamber Orchestra is wrapping up it’s inaugural season with a “Mostly Mozart” concert. Founder and music director Victor Vallo came into the studios to talk about this concert, and the talented musicians that play in the ensemble.
Information about the Syracuse Chamber Orchestra can be found here.
It was an absolute blast to talk to Fred Grandy and Richard Barth today. They are the stars of “Dirty Rotten Scoundrels” coming up over the next two weekends at The Redhouse. We talked about the show, and their journeys into the arts. They even gave some advice for aspiring young artists.
What an amazing afternoon! We had six outstanding young musicians in the studio to give us a preview of this weekend’s CMM concert. This is the annual showcase of Central New York talent presented by Civic Morning Musicals, and it is a marvelous event.
Information about Civic Morning Musicals is available here.
The Cayuga Chamber Orchestra is preparing for it’s final concert of the season – opening with a newly commissioned work! We spoke to composer Seth Grosshandler, as well as guest artist clarinetist Michael Wayne, about the concert and the incredible music and talent of the orchestra.
More about the Cayuga Chamber Orchestra is available here.
The Geneva Music Festival is happening right now! Festival founder and director Geoffrey Herd, along with festival regulars Jinjoo Cho, violin, Eric Wong, viola, and Max Geissler, cello, joined in the conversation about the festival, the joy of coming together to create live music, and the friendships that carry through all that they do.
All the details about the Geneva Music Festival (going on through June 12th) can be found here.
The 315 Ensemble continues it’s season with “Strains in the Signals,” a concert of new electro-acoustic works from composers based in Central New York as well as abroad. Founder and Artistic Director Chris Cresswell stopped into the studios to talk about the concert, the history of the ensemble, and share some insight into listening – hint: you don’t need to be an expert!
The Clinton Symphony Orchestra presents “Lyrical Masterpieces” this weekend, and we were excited to chat with Maestro Octavio Mas-Arocas and guest violinist Yvonne Lam about the concert. Not only did we chat about the music, we spoke about the importance of performances for young audiences, and the connections the musicians and audiences feel.
Information about the Clinton Symphony Orchestra of the Mohawk Valley is available here.
The Syracuse chapter of the American Guild of Organists is hosting a recital for the dedication of the newly restored E.M. Skinner Organ, Op. 579 at Westminster Presbyterian Church. Organist Colin MacKnight and restoration expert Ben Merchant of Kerner & Merchant Pipeorgan Builders stopped into the studios to chat about the recital, the music that best fits the organ and the space, and what it takes to do a restoration like this.
Chelsea Opera – Cast of “The Parting” by Tom Cipullo
Chelsea Opera is preparing the New York premiere of “The Parting,” by Tom Cipullo. We were treated not only to conversation, but wonderful performances from the cast. Joining us in the studios were: Leonarda Priore, founder of Chelsea Opera; Jestin Pieper, assistant conductor for the production, and the cast: Peter Kendall Clark (“Miklos Radnoti”); Laura Dixon Strickling (“Fanni Garamati” – a role written specifically for her); and Sarah Hertzel (“Death”). We talked about this moving opera, and listened to these incredible singers.
Symphoria’s Pops series finale is coming up this weekend, with special guests The Doo Wop Project. It promises to be an exciting program, and we had a chance to chat with Pam Murchison, Executive Director with Symphoria, about the concert, the rest of the season, and the incredible musicians here in the heart of our community.
Civic Morning Musicals present pianist Jacob Ertl with “The Pianist Speaks.” It’s a program that explores “music as a vehicle for social justice, change, and the spiritual journey within.” Jacob stopped into the studios to talk about the program, what inspired it, and how it all came together.
The Civic Morning Musicals website is available here.
You can find out more about Jacob Ertl at his website.
The Cayuga Chamber Orchestra of Ithaca (Chamber Concert Series)
The Cayuga Chamber Orchestra presents orchestral and chamber concerts throughout their season. Cellist Elizabeth Simkin spoke to host Bruce Paulsen about the upcoming string chamber music concert, with music by Shostakovich and Mendelssohn, and how playing in small ensembles is reflected in the orchestral performances.
You can find the Cayuga Chamber Orchestra website here.
Schola Cantorum of Syracuse is presenting a program of Easter and Pentecost music from Byrd to Bach this week. Barry Torres, Artistic Director of Schola Cantorum spoke to us about the program and the exciting experience the ensemble has in store for the audience.
Learn more about Schola Cantorum of Syracuse here.
This weekend, the Syracuse Friends of Chamber Music host the Vonsattel String Quartet. Violinist Sarah Crocker Vonsattel spoke to host Bruce Paulsen to tell us more about what’s in store for this concert.
Information about the Syracuse Friends of Chamber Music is available here.
Next week the Silverwood Clarinet Choir is the featured performer for Civic Morning Musicals “First Mondays” concert series. Kathy Freer, Artistic Director and founder of the Silverwood Clarinet Choir, along with manager Ken Freer, stopped into the studios to talk about this concert with music spanning 400 years. The choir will also welcome guest conductor and soloist Allan Kolsky from Symphoria.
More about Civic Morning Musicals can be found here.
And the Silverwood Clarinet Choir website is here.
Syracuse Opera and Tri-Cities Opera are joining forces for the upcoming production of Rossini’s “Cinderella.” Christian Capocaccia and John Rozzoni stopped into the Classic FM studios to talk about the production, and about the incredible benefits of their new collaboration.
Coming up this weekend a program of “Great String Trios and Duos,” part of the Sunday’s Live! series with Civic Morning Musicals. Cellist Gregory Wood stopped into the Classic FM studios to talk about the program, and about his collaboration with violinist Jeeyoung Park and violist William Fort-Smith. And we took a listen to just some of the music on the program.
More about Civic Morning Musicals can be found here.
Civic Morning Musicals presents a new concert series, First Mondays, with great performances on the first Monday of every month. Coming up next week, a performance from Samba Laranja, the S.U. Brazilian Ensemble. Co-director of the ensemble, Dr. Elisa Dekaney, came to the Classic FM studios to talk about the concert, the music, and a bit of the culture of Brazil. It’s sure to be an exciting concert from these talented young musicians.
More about Civic Morning Musicals can be found here.
And all the latest about Samba Laranja is on their Facebook page.
Martha Grener, flute and Rob Bridge, percussion are giving a concert at OCC on Wednesday evening. The concert wraps up a day of workshops for the OCC Flute and Percussion Day. Martha stopped into the Classic FM studios to tell us about the concert, the pairing of flute with percussion, and give us some insight into just what happens during a MasterClass.
More about Music at SUNY OCC is available on their Facebook page.
The Syracuse Vocal Ensemble is preparing for “Shakespeare and Love,” a concert featuring works composed on texts by Shakespeare, along with performances of sonnets and scenes with guest artists, Mark Cole and Robin Curtis. Julie Pretzat, Artistic Director of the ensemble, stopped into the studios to tell us more about the concert, and the fun they have had in putting it all together. She also gave us a hint about what’s in store for next season!
Countertenor Reginald Mobley is in Central New York for two performances with NYS Baroque this weekend. He took a short break from rehearsal to chat about the concert, and told us the amazing background of composer Ignatius Sancho, a former slave who became a composer and the first black person to vote in Parlimentary elections. We also learned how Reggie made the change from aspiring painter to Grammy-nominated singer.
The Euclid Quartet is coming to Utica this weekend, for the next concert with the Chamber Music Society of Utica. Violinist Jameson Cooper took a bit of time as the quartet was travelling to chat with us about the concert, and the joys of pairing familiar and new works on the same program.
Jameson has shared some additional information about the Paterson string quartet they will be performing, which you can see here.
More from the Chamber Music Society of Utica can be found here.
And information about the Euclid Quartet is available here.
The Cayuga Chamber Orchestra is presenting a “Celebration of Song” this weekend, with two very special guests. Soprano Lucy Fitz Gibbon and guest conductor Kirk Trevor spoke to us about the concert, the joys of live music, and the wonderful arrangement of the Mahler Symphony 4 for chamber orchestra.
More about the Cayuga Chamber Orchestra is available here.
Lucy Fitz Gibbon’s website is here, and Kirk Trevor’s is available here.
Peppie Calvar’s Mass of Reconciliation is coming to Hendricks Chapel on the SU campus this week as part of the Music & Message series and the Malmgren Concert series. Peppie stopped into the studios to talk about this high-energy mass blending jazz and funk styles, and about the resilience and commitment of the remarkable students who are a part of the performance.
Information about concerts at Hendricks Chapel is available here.
The Frisson Ensemble is coming to Syracuse this weekend! The Syracuse Friends of Chamber Music season continues, and Tom Gallant, Artistic Director of the Frisson Ensemble, spoke to us about the program they have in store. He also gave us some insight into the flexible nature of the ensemble, and just where the name “Frisson” originated.
Information about the Syracuse Friends of Chamber Music available here.
Syracuse City Ballet is presenting the final performance of this season, “Romantic, Classical and Modern” over the next three weekends in their own studios. Artistic Director Aldo Santiago stopped by the studios to give us some insight into the works, having an audience right in the studio space, and what it takes to become part of the corps of dancers.
Information about Syracuse City Ballet is available here.
Ted Lange comes to Syracuse! Ted is the director of “Fences,” the play by August Wilson, opening at The Red House this weekend. He spoke to host Bruce Paulsen about the play, the importance of this work, and shared a bit of his life in the theater – including his studies at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Arts in London.
More about “Fences” and The Red House Arts Center here.
Schola Cantorum of Syracuse presents “Infelix ego,” several settings of Savonarola’s Psalm 50. Music Director Barry Torres spoke to Diane Jones about the concert and these incredible settings. He also gave us some insight into the wonderful musicians in this ensemble.
Pianist Jon Nakamatsu, guest artist with Symphoria
Jon Nakamatsu is the guest artist this weekend with Symphoria. Jon gave us some insight into the Piano Concerto in G from Maurice Ravel, and the incredible music not only for him as a pianist, but the members of the orchestra as well. And he told us how he went from teaching high school German to a full-time career as a concert pianist.
Pianist Natasha Paremski is back in Syracuse to perform with Symphoria once again! This time, she brings back-to-back Gershwin, performing both rhapsodies with the orchestra. Natasha took some time out from her rehearsal to chat with us about the program, and the importance of sharing music with our children.
The B Sharp Musical Club presents “Piano Collaborations: 2, 4, 6, 8, hands that make the music great!” coming up this weekend. B Sharp members present music for two pianos – an opportunity that doesn’t happen often. Sar-Shalom Strong stopped into the studios to talk about the program, the joys and challenges of coordinating both performers and instruments, and give us a bit of history about B Sharp.
More about the B Sharp Musical Club at their website.
Symphoria is back in the Crouse Hinds Theater in Syracuse for their Holiday Pops Concert! Principal Pops conductor Sean O’Loughlin joined us to talk about the concert, their guests, and the excitement of returning to the OnCenter!
Barry Torres, director of Schola Cantorum of Syracuse, chatted with us about the upcoming holiday concert by Schola Cantorum of Syracuse. Find out about the wonderful music and connections in this amazing group.
More about Schola Cantorum of Syracuse at their website.
After a 2-year hiatus, the Syracuse Vocal Ensemble is presenting a live concert! It’s “A Global Feast of Carols,” and SVE artistic director Julie Pretzat stopped into the studios to tell us all about the concert, the joys of returning to live performance, and the challenges of singing while masked!
More about the Syracuse Vocal Ensemble is available here.
Syracuse Opera brings “The Ballad of the Brown King” to life this weekend! This Christmas cantata, composed by Margaret Bonds with text by Langston Hughes, brings influences of European, Jazz, Calypso, gospel music, and blues to this telling of the tale of the African king, Balthazar. Christian Capocaccia, General and Artistic Director of Syracuse Opera, and Sonya Hines, radio announcer and journalist, stopped into the Classic FM studios to chat about this exciting production in the heart of Syracuse.
More about this and the entire Syracuse Opera season available here.
The 315 Ensemble is preparing for it’s relaunch – and it’s first concert in the US! Chris Cresswell, composer and founder of the 315 Ensemble, came to the studios to talk about the concert, the music, and how he brings traditional instruments and technology together.
Information about this production at The 315 Ensemble available at their website.
Joanie Anderson plays Delores van Cartier in “Sister Act”
The Red House returns to live performances with “Sister Act,” the hit broadway musical based on the 1996 film. We were fortunate to have Temar Underwood, Artistic Director of The Red House, along with Joanie Anderson, who plays Delores van Cartier in Sister Act, in the studios to talk about the opening production. We had a great time and lots of laughs!
Information about this production at The Red House website.
The Neave Trio is presenting the next concert with the Chamber Music Society of Utica. Their concert, “Her Voice,” brings trios from four women composers to the stage. Cellist Mikhail Veselov shared his insight into the music and the project, and explained just how the trio got its name.
Information about the Chamber Music Society of Utica is available here.
More about the Neave Trio can be found on their website.
Jordan Dodson, guitar Guest Artist – Cayuga Chamber Orchestra
The Cayuga Chamber Orchestra is gearing up for an exciting concert with guest artist, guitarist Jordan Dodson. Music Director Cornelia Orth joined us for a noontime interview to talk about the concert, and how a guest artist is invited to perform.
Learn more about the Cayuga Chamber Orchestra here.
The Nezhdanova Placzek Duo Elena Nezhdanova, piano & Roman Placzek, cello
It was so exciting to have live music in our WCNY studios! Elena Nezhdanova, piano & Roman Planczek, cello, shared their music as well as giving us insights into their upcoming concert, opening the new season with CMM Live. We’ll hear just how French and Czech music are linked together, and get a listen to just some of Roman’s composition, “Dumka.”
More about Civic Morning Musicals and CMM Live available here.
And more about the Nezhdanova-Placzek Duo available here.
Violinist Rubén Rengel is the guest artist for the next Symphoria Masterworks concert. This incredibly talented musician stopped into the Classic FM studios to talk about performing the Korngold Violin Concerto for the first time with an orchestra, and his journey from Venezuela to the US.
Information about this and the full season at Symphoria is available here.
Oswego Opera is back with both live and virtual performances of the Gilbert & Sullivan opera, “H.M.S. Pinafore.” Artistic director Juan La Manna and stage director Benjamin Spierman stopped into the WCNY studios to talk about this production, and the incredible work that Oswego Opera does to mentor up and coming artists.
Information about Oswego Opera Theater is available here.
Schola Cantorum of Syracuse will be performing “Les Deux Guillaumes” for the next two weekends. Director Barry Torres joined mid-day host Diane Jones to talk about the importance of this music, and the talents of the Schola Six, a select group of talented singers who specialize in the close harmonies of these works.
Jeffrey Siegel is coming back to the Munson Williams Proctor Art Institute for another in his Keyboard Conversation series. This time it is “Fantastic Fantasies,” and Jeffrey spoke to mid-day host Diane Jones about just what a “fantasy” means to these composers. He also shared a wonderful story about the start of several collaborations with Maestro Zubin Mehta!
Information about Keyboard Conversations can be found here.
Michael Connor (Mr. Scruples) and Keith Harris (Mr. Bluff), from the Syracuse Opera production of Mozart’s “The Impresario”
The Syracuse Opera Company is kicking off the 2021-22 season with a production of Mozart’s “The Impressario.” In the second of two conversations, we spoke with Christian Capocaccia (General & Artistic Director of Syracuse Opera) and Keith Harris (“Mr. Bluff”) about the production. They brought insight into finding the soul of the characters and the music, and the excitement of this wonderful, light opera from Mozart.
Emily Misch (Madame Goldentrill) and Michael Connor (Mr. Scruples), from the Syracuse Opera production of Mozart’s “The Impressario”
The Syracuse Opera Company is kicking off the 2021-22 season with a production of Mozart’s “The Impressario.” Two of the stars, Michael Connor (“Mr. Scruples”) and Emily Misch (“Madame Goldentrill”), stopped into the Classic FM studios to talk about this production, performing in this new theater space, and their experiences with this rarely performed opera in the past.
Cellist Julian Schwarz is returning to Syracuse once again, to perform with Symphoria. He spoke to mid-day host Diane Jones about the Shostakovich Cello Concerto, the wonderful instrument he has, and the joys of performing live in Syracuse once more.
The Chelsea Opera Company is presenting its first Syracuse production this weekend – “The Medium” by Gian Carlo Menotti. Chelsea co-founder Leonarda Priore and Producing Artistic Director Garrett Heater chatted with mid-day host Diane Jones about the production and just what makes this opera company unique.
Learn more about the Chelsea Opera Company at their website, here.
There’s a new ensemble in town! The Syracuse Chamber Orchestra is giving it’s inaugural concert this Sunday at OCC in Syracuse. Founder and music director Victor Vallo stopped into the Classic FM studios to share more about the orchestra, the talented musicians who are performing, and how the ensemble hopes to grow in this vibrant arts community.
Learn more about the Syracuse Chamber Orchestra at their website, here.
The Society for New Music is presenting a newly commissioned opera about the life of Libba Cotten. Music Director Heather Buchman was in the WCNY studios to talk about this opera – how it came to be, and the life of this remarkable woman who won a Grammy at the age of 93.
The Society for New Music website is available here.
The Wu Han-Setzer-Finckel Trio will be opening the new season of the Syracuse Friends of Chamber Music. Wu Han spoke to mid-day host Diane Jones about the concert, the excitement of performing live again, and how the incredible relationship between the members of the ensemble shine through on stage.
Information about the concert and the Syracuse Friends of Chamber Music is available here.
Conductor Sean O’Loughlin opens the 2021-22 Pops Series with Symphoria this weekend, featuring guest artist Joe Carello, saxophone. Sean spoke to mid-day host Diane Jones about the concert, his work in LA, and his original composition on this weekend’s program.
The Malmgren Concert Series kicks off this weekend and next with two concerts at Hendricks Chapel on the Syracuse University campus. University Organist Annie Laver stopped by the FM Studios to talk about these concerts and the guest artists who are not only performing, but working with the SU students.
Learn more about this series and Hendricks Chapel here.
Octavio Más-Arocas, Music Director – Clinton Symphony
Octavio Más-Arocas is the new Music Director for the Clinton Symphony Orchestra. He joined mid-day host Diane Jones to chat about the new season, this weekend’s concert, and some of the things he learned from his mentors (including Kurt Masur and David Zinmann!)
The Clinton Symphony Orchestra website can be found here.
Violinist Tai Murray is the guest artist for “A New Beginning,” the opening concert of the Symphoria MasterWorks series for 2021-22. Tai joined mid-day host Diane Jones to chat about the Tchaikovsky violin concerto, and the importance of listening.
Cornelia Orth Music Director – Cayuga Chamber Orchestra
The Cayuga Chamber Orchestra is ready to kick off it’s 45th season of music. Maestra Cornelia Orth, Music Director of CCO Ithaca, joined mid-day host Diane Jones to chat about the upcoming season, and the wide array of music in store.
The Cayuga Chamber Orchestra website is available here.
Aldo Katton Artistic Director, Syracuse City Ballet
Aldo Kattón from the Syracuse City Ballet stopped by the Classic FM studios to chat about the upcoming production of Peter and the Wolf. He also talked about the excitement of the entire troupe to perform live again, and gave us a few hints about what’s coming up this season.
Aldo was recently named Interim Artistic Director of the Syracuse City Ballet. Congratulations!
The Syracuse City Ballet website is available here.
Jeffrey Siegel returns to Utica for a new season of Keyboard Conversations. This weekend is “The Glorious Music of Chopin.” Jeffrey spoke with mid-day host Diane Jones about the program, and why he chose them to provide reflection and respite from a turbulent year.
Learn about Jeffrey Siegel and Keyboard Conversations here.