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1. Classical Classroom

Classical Classroom

Classical 91.7 audio librarian, Dacia Clay has a secret: she knows next to nothing about classical music. But she wants to learn! In each episode of the Classical Classroom, classical music pros will give her "homework assignments". You'll learn about everything from bel canto aria to the use of leitmotif in the score to Star Wars. Come learn with us in the Classical Classroom.

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2. Classical Classroom

Classical Classroom

Classical 91.7 audio librarian, Dacia Clay has a secret: she knows next to nothing about classical music. But she wants to learn! In each episode of the Classical Classroom, classical music pros give her "homework assignments." You'll learn about everything from bel canto aria to the use of leitmotif in the score to Star Wars. Come learn with us in the Classical Classroom.

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4. Ep 115: Awakening John Williams' "Force" With Brett Mitchell

Ep 115: Awakening John Williams'

This episode is full of spoilers - not just spoilers about The Force Awakens, but about future Star Wars episodes. Okay - they could be future spoilers. Right now, they're just our attempts at trying to find the Easter eggs hidden in John Williams' new score. This may be the nerdiest and most epic episode of Classical Classroom to date. Brett Mitchell, Associate Conductor of the Cleveland Orchestra and Music Director of the Cleveland Orchestra Youth Orchestra, is your guide through the music of the latest Star Wars episode. He teaches about John Williams as a composer and about important tools of the compositional trade, and reveals how this new music is tied to Williams' score for the original films. Mitchell takes no prisoners, and does not care for Ewoks. Prepare for hyperdrive. Music for the episode: - "Ride of the Valkyries." From The Ring Cycle, by Richard Wagner. - Music from the original motion picture scores for -- Star Wars: Episode 1, The Phantom Menace -- Star Wars: Episode 4, A New Hope -- Star Wars: Episode 7, The Force Awakens Audio production by X-Wing pilot Todd "Dameron" Hulslander with lightsaber sounds by Dacia Clay and editing by Mark DiClaudio. Many thanks to Angela "Organa" Mitchell, Randy Davis, and Al Dahlhausen at WCLV for their help with this episode! Like this episode? Check out Classical Classroom, Episode 4: Leitmotif In Star Wars, also featuring Brett Mitchell!

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5. Ep 110: Starting From Scratch - Bryce Dessner, Aron Sanchez, & So Percussion

Ep 110: Starting From Scratch - Bryce Dessner, Aron Sanchez, & So Percussion

Knowing how a piece of classical music came to be is often a bit of a guessing game. What inspired Bach to write the Goldberg Variations, or Beethoven to write his 9th Symphony? Context clues, letters, composers' notes help us put the story together; we fill in the rest with our imaginations and mythology. But no more! In this episode of Classical Classroom, you'll hear the entire story of a piece of modern classical music, Music for Wood and Strings, from commission to performance. Even the instruments on which the piece is played didn't exist before this story began. You'll meet composer Bryce Dessner (The National), instrument maker Aron Sanchez (Buke and Gase), and the members of So Percussion. You'll hear a lot of awesome music. You'll laugh! You'll cry. Your life will be affirmed. But seriously, it's a compelling (and thoroughly American) story about ingenuity, modernist music, and most importantly, joy. Music in this episode: - Music for Wood and Strings. Bryce Dessner. Played by So Percussion. - "Don't Swallow the Cap." The National, from the album Trouble Will Find Me. - "Seam Esteem." Buke and Gase. - So-Called Laws of Nature. David Lang. Played by So Percussion. - Appalachian Grove I. Laurie Spiegel. Audio production by Todd "Tex" Hulslander with giddyups from Dacia Clay and editing by Mark DiClaudio. For more So Percussion: www.sopercussion.com For more Bryce Dessner: www.brycedessner.com For more Aron Sanchez: www.polyphonicworkshop.com Thanks to Emily Motherwell, Stuart Wolferman, Da Camera of Houston, and the people at Brassland for their help with this episode.

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6. Classical Classroom, Episode 61: Motet - Not Lesstet - With Mark Buller

Classical Classroom, Episode 61: Motet - Not Lesstet - With Mark Buller

Take a tour through music history - from chant to present day - through the lens of the motet. What's a "motet", you ask? Is it real, you ask? We are not entirely sure. Composer Mark Buller, whose music has been performed worldwide, and who has been commissioned by organizations like Houston Grand Opera, will be your tour guide. Get on board the great Classroom coaster. We have cupholders and a great soundsystem. Audio production by Todd "Tween" Hulslander with insightful insight from Dacia Clay. Music in this episode: - Adam de la Halle: "Mout me fu grief li departir/Robins m'aime/Portare", Tonus Peregrinus/Anthony Pitts - Philippe de Vitry: "Garrit gallus flendo dolorose/In nova fert animus/Neuma" Sequentia - Palestrina, "Osculetur me osculo oris sui" from Canticum Canticorum, The Hilliard Ensemble - Thomas Tallis, "If ye love me”, The Sixteen/Harry Christophers - JS Bach: Lobet den Herrn, alle Heiden, Monteverdi Choir/John Eliot Gardiner - W.A. Mozart, Ave verum corpus, The Sixteen/Harry Christophers - Richard Strauss: Deutsche Motette, Choir of Gonville & Caius College, Cambridge, Choir of King's College/David Trendell - Morten Lauridsen: O Magnum Mysterium, 1994, Vasari Singers/Jeremy Backhouse - Mark Buller: "O nata lux" from Five Motets, Chamber Choir/John Hudson; Mark Buller, piano For more about Mark Buller, go to www.markbuller.com. For more Classical Classroom, go to www.houstonpublicmedia.org.

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7. Classical Classroom, Episode 83: Nico Muhly Speaks Volumes About Listening To New Classical Music

Classical Classroom, Episode 83: Nico Muhly Speaks Volumes About Listening To New Classical Music

This week, composer Nico Muhly is premiering a brand new work, "How Little You Are," in Austin, Texas. He talks about the classical (or concert)music world's premiering process, and about how and why listening to classical music golden oldies is different than listening to a new work, about the inspiration for his new piece, and of course, about Prince. Music in this episode: - Mozart: Magic Flute. Conducted by John Eliot Gardiner. - Bach: Magnificat. - Stravinsky: Petrouchka. Michael Tilson Thomas conducts the Philharmonia Orchestra. - Joni Mitchell: A Case of You (from Blue) - Prince: A Case of You (from A Tribute to Joni Mitchell) - Nico Muhly: Sensational Calligraphic Scribble / Amor Nos Une / Room Song (from Object Songs) - Philip Glass: Koyaanisqatsi (from Koyaanisqatsi - Life Out of Balance motion picture score) - Nico Muhly: Mothertongue Pt. 1: Archive (from Mothertongue) Audio production by Todd "TIE fighter" Hulslander with lightsaber skills by Dacia Clay. Editing by Mark DiClaudio. For more about Nico Muhly: www.nicomuhly.com For more Classroom: www.houstonpublicmedia.org/classroom For more about Nico's world premiere - happening Saturday, 4/18/15, at Bass Concert Hall at the University of Texas - go here: www.texasperformingarts.org/season/how-little-you-are-nico-muhly-austin.

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8. Classical Classroom, Episode 74: Rebel with a violin - Mozart's violin concertos, Rachel Barton Pine

Classical Classroom, Episode 74: Rebel with a violin - Mozart's violin concertos, Rachel Barton Pine

What makes Mozart's violin concertos so special? Is it that he only wrote 5 of them? That he wrote him when he was a teenager? That they are both beautiful AND hilarious? What is it?? Violinist Rachel Barton Pine returns to the Classroom to spell out why these pieces are so special - generally and personally - that she decided to record all of them. Audio production by Todd "Mr. Titters" Hulslander with that funky monkey, Dacia Clay. All music in this episode is from Rachel Barton Pine's new CD, "Mozart: Complete Violin Concertos, Sinfonia Concertante K364", with Matthew Lipman, Academy of St. Martin in the Fields, and Sir Neville Marriner conducting. (Avie 2317) You can also hear Rachel in episode 43, and in our short, "Rachel Barton Pine Rocks and Bows". For more about Rachel Barton Pine, www.rachelbartonpine.com. For more Classroom, www.houstonpublicmedia.org/classroom.

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9. Classical Classroom, Ep. 168: Third Coast Percussion Plays At 1.21 Gigawatts

Classical Classroom, Ep. 168: Third Coast Percussion Plays At 1.21 Gigawatts

"Percussion is almost anything that we say 'yes' to playing." - Sean Connors Wait. A percussion-only ensemble? Is that, like, a fancy drum circle? Sean Connors of the Grammy-winning percussion quartet Third Coast Percussion explains that this is not too far from the truth. But the operative word is "fancy." As Connors describes it, percussion ensembles are the mad scientists of the music world. Any object in the world is a potential instrument. And when they've run out of objects, they just invent more. (Fun fact: Third Coast sometimes works with actual scientists at the University of Notre Dame where they are ensemble in residence.) Learn all about the crazy world of percussion ensembles and hear some amazing music in this show. Music in this episode: - Mallet Quartet: III (Fast), by Steve Reich, from Third Coast Grammy performance with Ravi Coltrane - Wild Sound, mvt 4, by Glenn Kotche (Arduino and marimba versions) Audio production by Todd "Neil Peart" Hulslander with air drumming by Dacia Clay and video production and assistance by Mark DiClaudio. (To see video of Third Coast Percussion performing in a master class at the Moores School of music, go to www.houstonpublicmedia.org/classroom.)

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10. Classical Classroom, Episode 1: Chris Johnson teaches Vivaldi's Autumn

Classical Classroom, Episode 1: Chris Johnson teaches Vivaldi's Autumn

In this episode, Dacia Clay talks with Chris Johnson about Vivaldi's "Autumn", and rich people having picnics.

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11. Classical Classroom, Episode 88: Hilary Hahn's View on Vieuxtemps

Classical Classroom, Episode 88: Hilary Hahn's View on Vieuxtemps

Violinist Hilary Hahn, who has played a few concerts in her day - somewhere around 1,437 of them - talks about Henri Vieuxtemps' Violin Concerto No. 4, which she plays on her latest CD. Is music composed by a violinist for violinists easier or more challenging to play? How was it that Vieuxtemps was more popular than Mozart at one point and now...not so much? And most important of all, Hahn discusses her violin case's Twitter account. Audio production by Todd "Takei" Hulslander with beaming up by Dacia Clay and editing by Mark DiClaudio. Music in this episode, from Hilary Hahn's CD Mozart 5 Vieuxtemps 4 Violin Concertos (Deutsche Grammophon): - Henri Vieuxtemps, Violin Concerto No. 4 in D Minor, Op. 31. Hilary Hahn, violin. The Deutsche Kammerphilharmonie Bremen. Conducted by Paavo Järvi. For more Hilary Hahn: www.hilaryhahn.com For more Classroom: www.houstonpublicmedia.org/classroom

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12. Classical Classroom, Episode 82: Branford Marsalis Gives Classical Music Jazz Hands

Classical Classroom, Episode 82: Branford Marsalis Gives Classical Music Jazz Hands

Branford Marsalis' stark 2014 solo album "In My Solitude" includes jazz standards like "Stardust" next to C.P.E. Bach's "Sonata in A Minor for Oboe, Wq. 132". His jazz discography is peppered with classical releases. What's that all about?! Where do jazz and classical intersect? How is playing one different from the other - or is it? Find out in this episode! Audio production by Todd "The Twister" Hulslander with a firm handshake from Dacia Clay and editing by Mark DiClaudio. Music in this episode: - Lee Dorsey: "Working In The Coal Mine" (1966) - Murray Perahia & Radu Lupu: Mozart - Sonata in D Major for Two Pianos - Andrew Litton, Branford Marsalis & English Chamber Orchestra: "L'Isle Joyeuse" from Romances for Saxophone - Ferenc Erkel Chamber Orchestra & Jozsef Kiss: CPE Bach - Sonata in A Minor for Oboe Solo, Wq. 132: 1. Poco adgio - ...and from Branford Marsalis' In My Solitude: Live at Grace Cathedral: --- CPE Bach - Sonata in A Minor for Oboe Solo, Wq. 132: 1. Poco adgio --- Hoagy Carmichael/ Mitchell Parish - "Stardust" --- Ryo Noda - MAI, Op 7 --- Improvisation No.1 For more about Branford Marsalis: www.branfordmarsalis.com For more Classroom: www.houstonpublicmedia.org/classroom Da Camera of Houston is bringing Branford to Houston this month! To learn more, go to www.dacamera.com.

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13. Classical Classroom, Episode 39: Conductor James Gaffigan on Shostakovich's Symphony No. 5 (Rerun!!)

Classical Classroom, Episode 39: Conductor James Gaffigan on Shostakovich's Symphony No. 5 (Rerun!!)

Producer Todd is off recording Two Star Symphony's new album right now (sweet!), so we have unearthed some old gold for you from the vault. Please enjoy this repeat of our class with conductor James Gaffigan. We'll be back next week with another spankin' new episode. -------------------- Shostakovich's Symphony No. 5 is dramatic, cinematic, erratic, sarcastic, and full of existential longing - according to Chief Conductor of the Lucerne Symphony Orchestra, James Gaffigan. Why is it important to listen to this symphony, the musical expression of Shostakovich's depression and anxiety as he lived under Stalin's thumb? Listen to this episode and find out! Audio production by Todd "Taller than Necessary" Hulslander with inspired napping from Dacia Clay. Music in the episode includes: - Dmitri Shostakovich, Symphony No. 5 in D minor, Op. 47, New York Philharmonic Orchestra led by Leonard Bernstein To find out more about conductor James Gaffigan, go to www.jamesgaffigan.com To find out more about hilarious comedian Jim Gaffigan, go to a different website. :)

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14. Classical Classroom, MusicWorks, Ep 134: Classical Out Of The Blue, With Jherek Bischoff

Classical Classroom, MusicWorks, Ep 134: Classical Out Of The Blue, With Jherek Bischoff

How strange (and awesome) it is to be Jherek Bischoff at all. This composer, arranger, performer, and producer began his musical journey playing prog rock on bass guitar. After spending years of his youth on a boat, which his family sailed around the world playing music with locals as they went, he toured and recorded with indie rock and experimental bands. Then one day, he heard a piece of classical music that changed his life forever. Suddenly, he found himself composing for chamber groups and orchestras, learning a whole new musical and cultural language. Hear all about his journey into classical music, his interview with Terry Gross, and his new album (which was born inside of a cistern), in this episode. Music in this episode from Bischoff’s upcoming album Cistern (release: July 15, 2016). For more about Jherek and Cistern, go to www.jherekbischoff.com. Audio production by Todd “Tiramisu” Hulslander with doggy paddling by Dacia Clay and editing by Mark DiClaudio. Thanks to George Heathco for the MusicWorks theme music. For more about his music: www.soundcloud.com/george-heathco

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16. Classical Classroom, Ep 135: Summer Music – Music Academy Of The West! Ragging On Jeremy Denk

Classical Classroom, Ep 135: Summer Music – Music Academy Of The West! Ragging On Jeremy Denk

It’s time for the second annual Classical Classroom Summer Music Festival Series! This year, we hit the (sound)waves at the Music Academy of the West in sunny Santa Barbara, California. In the first installment of our MAW series, pianist Jeremy Denk talks about teaching the enormousness of Beethoven to young artists, ragging classical music, whether or not classical music today exists outside the bounds of style, and about what makes the Music Academy of the West unique to him. Throughout the MAW Summer Series, we’ll also hear from the Academy’s president and CEO Scott Reed, faculty clarinet Richie Hawley, and viola fellow Matthew Sinno about the festival experience from their perspectives. It’s going to be rad. Music in this episode: - “Pipeline” as recorded by the Ventures - “Pilgrims Chorus,” Tannhäuser, Wagner. (from Youtube) - From Jeremy Denk’s recital: -- Stravinsky, Piano-Rag-Music -- Byrd, The Passinge Mesures: the Nynthe Pavian - From My Ladye Nevells Booke of Virginal Music -- Lambert, “Pilgrim’s Chorus” from Tannhäuser (after Wagner) -- Bach, English Suite No. 3 in G Minor, BWV 808, Gigue - Mozart Gigue In G Major, K 574 - Tea For Two by Art Tatum Audio production by Todd “Two-Shirts” Hulslander with overlording by Dacia Clay. Thanks to the Music Academy of the West for their help with this series, especially to Kate Oberjat, the coolest coordinator in the West, for her assistance with basically everything.

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17. Classical Classroom, Episode 48: The Texas Tenors Teach Tenor Types

Classical Classroom, Episode 48: The Texas Tenors Teach Tenor Types

How, exactly, does one know that he is a "light lyric tenor" or a "Spinto tenor" or a "dramatic tenor"? Is there like, a Tenor Task Team? Two members of the Texas Tenors - JC Fisher and John Hagen - teach the types of tenor to us. We also learn about "classical crossover" music and why it is a gateway drug, turning innocent classical music newbies into addicts by the thousands. Audio production by Todd "Tenortastic" Hulslander with scads of squillo from Dacia Clay. Music in this episode: - "La donna è mobile", by The Three Tenors, from the Three Tenors in Concert, Los Angeles, 1994 - "Celeste Aida", by Giuseppe Verdi, performed by Giuseppe Giacomini - Tosca, by Giacomo Puccini, performed by Luciano Pavarotti (James Levine on piano) - Otello, by Giuseppe Verdi, performed by Placido Domingo - “Principe più non se” from La Cenerentola by Gioachino Rossini, performed by Juan Diego Florez with Los Angeles Philharmonic - "Vesti la Giubba" from Pagliacci by Ruggero Leoncavallo, performed by Luciano Pavarotti - La Boheme by Giacomo Puccini, performed Andrea Bocelli - "Nessun Dorma" from Turandot by Giacomo Puccini, performed by Franco Corelli - "Nessun Dorma" from Turandot by Giacomo Puccini, performed by the Texas Tenors For more about the Texas Tenors: ww.thetexastenors.com For more about Classical Classroom: www.houstonpublicmedia.org/classroom

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18. Classical Classroom, Ep. 146: Get Out The Note! Politics In Music With Victoria Bond

Classical Classroom, Ep. 146: Get Out The Note! Politics In Music With Victoria Bond

Waaaay back in episode 102, composer and conductor Victoria Bond taught us about the first woman to run for the U.S. presidency, about whom Bond wrote the opera Mrs. President. On this, the first day of early voting for the U.S.'s 2016 election, Bond is back to teach about what turns out to be a tradition in classical music: music based on true political events. Learn about the pieces throughout history that are... about history, go vote, and then learn about the upcoming performance of Bond's opera. Music in this episode: - By Victoria Bond: --Mrs. President --"Soul of a Nation," from Four Presidents - Ludwig van Beethoven’s Third Symphony - Dmitri Shostakovich’s Seventh - John Adams’ Nixon in China - Benjamin Britten’s Sinfonia da Requiem and War Requiem - Krzysztof Penderecki’s Threnody for the Victims of Hiroshima - Georges Bizet's Carmen Audio production by Todd "Electoral College" Hulslander with editing by Mark DiClaudio and yeas and nays from Dacia Clay. Happy voting everyone!

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19. Classical Classroom, Ep 136: Summer Music – Music Acad Of The West! Being Present With Bill Williams

Classical Classroom, Ep 136: Summer Music – Music Acad Of The West! Being Present With Bill Williams

In our second annual Classical Classroom Summer Music Festival Series, we hit the (sound)waves at the Music Academy of the West in sunny Santa Barbara, California! The second installment of our MAW series features trumpet player, performance coach, and educator, Bill Williams. Williams initially spent his career as principal trumpet for orchestras like San Francisco, Santa Fe, and Barcelona. But when performances began to induce anxieties and other distractions, he started seeking ways to regain focus. As it turns out, Bill wasn’t alone: many musicians perform in spite of the fear of doing so. Williams’ research led him to meet sport psychologist Dr. Don Greene. Eventually, Williams honed a series of techniques to help improve musicians’ focus, and with it, their performance. In this episode, Williams talks all about common mental blocks that come up for classical musicians and how he now spends much of his time helping people overcome them, one psychological bear at a time. Music in this episode: - “Pipeline” as recorded by the Ventures - Glen Gould: Bach Goldberg Variations - San Francisco Symphony Mahler Symphony No. 5 Audio production by Todd “Triple Lutz” Hulslander with perfect landing by Dacia Clay and editing by Mark DiClaudio. Many thanks to the Music Academy for their help with this series – especially to Kate Oberjat, whose name rhymes with “clover yacht,” and who has helped us an awful lot.

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