Upcoming and Noteworthy

What's ahead on The Classical Network? Catch some of these great programs coming your way. Information on evening concert broadcasts of the New York Philharmonic, Chicago Symphony Orchestra and other nationally broadcast performances can be found on our home page.

Antonio Vivaldi claimed to have written 94 operas but only about 50 have been identified and only 16 of those are complete. They were influential and popular during his lifetime but to an audience 300 years later the poetry and stories often appear stilted and artificial, almost alien, and in spite of the music they were mostly neglected. But recent revivals have been well received and there is much reward in accepting the operas on their own terms.

You may not know the composer’s name on this week’s Dress Circle (8/5 7:00 p.m.), but you’re sure to know many of the songs penned by the wonderful James “Jimmy” McHugh.  With lyricists like Dorothy Fields, Harold Adamson, and Ted Koehler, McHugh’s prolific career spanned three decades with songs for the stage and screen.  Join us as we celebrate the career of this wonderful composer with songs that appeared in the films “Higher and Higher” and “Bring on the Girls” as well as the revue of his music entitled “Lucky in the Rain.”  

It's the music of 15th century Flemish composer Alexander Agricola on Friday's Distant Mirror.  Agricola's music is rarely performed today because of its difficulty and eccentricity but Paul van Nevel  has arranged several of his mass movements into a musical quilt that he calls the Missa Guazzabuglio.  Van Nevel directs the Huelgas Ensemble.  Join Allan Kelly at 10pm.

Every first Saturday of the month, Kids on Keys showcases live performances by emerging young piano talents from the Classical Network's immediate broadcast areas of South and Central New Jersey, as well as Philadelphia and New York. 

This Saturday August 4th at 1:00 PM, Kids on Keys features pianists Sean Baker, Jennifer Liu, Philips Bailint, Jimmy Chen and Ami Hatori, along with legendary Prokofiev recordings from 1969 by the teenaged Russian piano prodigy Yekaterina Ervy-Novitskaya.

"Head Over Heels" is a new Broadway musical with a score of songs by the all-female band the Go-Go’s, who were popular in the ‘80s. It’s also, believe it or not, Elizabethan. Theater critic Howard Shapiro explains more his his review of the new musical this week on “In a Broadway Minute." Tune in Friday (8/3) at 8 am and Saturday (8/4) at 10 am.

Picaresque novels are generally characterized by having rogues or anti-heroes as protagonists, episodic, wayward structures, and, not infrequently, low humor.  Prepare to revel in some freewheeling lack of judgment, with music from “The Reivers” (John Williams), “The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn” (Jerome Moross), “Anthony Adverse” (Erich Wolfgang Korngold), and “Tom Jones” (John Addison).  We’re up to no good, this Friday at 6 pm.

Todd Rosenberg Photography

Carnegie Hall's National Youth Orchestra program launched its first-ever jazz program this summer, and this Saturday (8/4 at 7 pm) A Tempo takes a look at this new opportunity for young musicians. Host Rachel Katz will chat with pianist Brooke Wyatt from Houston, TX, and Wyatt Forham, a bass trombonist from St. Louis, MO. She will also speak with Joanna Massey, Director of Learning and Engagment Programs at Carnegie Hall's Weill Music Institute.

We’re staying in England for this week’s Sunday Opera (8/5 3:00 p.m.) and the Opera North production of Giuseppe Verdi’s “Un Ballo in Maschera.”  Without the censors of the 1850s, Antonio Somma’s libretto is set, as it was first intended, in Sweden, where the opera deals with the political machinations surrounding the assassination of King Gustavus III.  The cast includes Rafael Rojas as Gustavus, Adrienn Miksch as Amelia, Philip Rhodes as Count Anckarstroem (Renato), Patricia Bardon as the fortune teller Ulrika, and Tereza Georgyan as Gustavus’ page Oscar.  

Thursday's (8-2) Noontime Concert from Cutting Edge Concerts in Symphony Space presents the quartet Hub New Music in pieces by Victoria Bond, Laura Kaminsky & Robert Honstein.

This Wednesday (8-1) at noon on Curtis Calls we'll hear Romanze by Richard Strauss, Poeme by Ernest Chausson, and Brahms' Sonata No. 1 for piano & cello.  Performances from student recitals at the Curtis Institute, Wednesdays at nooon and Monday evening at 10.

This Sunday evening (7-29) at 11 on Half Past we'll hear the 1st piano concerto by Australian composer Bryan Brumby (1939-2018) and Dennis Riley's trio The Household Muses for clarinet, viola and piano.  Music from the past half-century on Half Past. 

According to a certain school of thought, folk music – music of the land – embodies the spirit of a nation.  And no nation’s composers milked that cow quite as soulfully as the English.  Tune in for an hour of bucolic reflections on a time lost to technology and industrialization, this Sunday at 10 pm. 

Verdi held back from writing Otello for years, only finally agreeing to take a look at Arrigo Boito's libretto with no promises that he would ever do any more than that. The lives of great composers are full of stories about how weak opera librettos have ill served great music - Schubert and Beethoven are just two examples. But Boito's brilliant libretto brought out the best of Verdi's music, and the result is one of the outstanding operas of the repertory.

We’ll be looking at July and August together for our show openings on this week’s Dress Circle (7/29 7:00 p.m.) since Broadway openings slow during the summer months with the exception of this year where there will be no fewer than four new musicals opening.  However, since they haven’t opened yet, we don’t have any music from them and won’t be mentioning them.  The “summer shows” we will be mentioning include the 1997 revival of “1776,” the riotous revue “Two on the Aisle,” one of Langston Hughes’ Broadway musicals “Simply Heavenly,” and the high-energy “Hairspray.”  

On Friday's Distant Mirror it's music from the Hundred Years War, that on again, off again struggle between England and France in the 14th and 15th centuries set  against a backdrop of plague, peasant revolts and papal politics.  Gothic Voices performs muisc from both sides, both sacred and secular.  Hear pieces by Philippe de Vitry, Pierre des Molins, John Dunstable and others.  Christopher Page directs.  And we'll conclude the program with lute music from late 15th--early 16th century Italian composer Marco Dall'Aquila.  Paul O'Dette performs.  Join Allan Kelly at 10pm. 

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