Arts & Culture

First Listen
8:24 am
Mon May 13, 2013

First Listen: Piñata Protest, 'El Valiente'

Piñata Protest's new album, El Valiente, comes out May 21.
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Fri May 24, 2013 4:41 pm

Audio for this feature is no longer available.

I was in high school, playing drums in a band with some pals in the mid-'70s, when I got a call from my uncle: Would I like to play a couple of dates with his norteño band over the summer?

While my drumming skills were decidedly high-school-level in terms of the rock and pop music of that era, I thought to myself that I was good enough for the two-step waltzes and cumbias that are a staple of accordion-fueled dance parties all over the Southwest and northern Mexico.

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World Music
4:59 pm
Fri May 10, 2013

World Music Celebrations: Moroccan Rose Festival

H.Zell Wikimedia Commons

Each week on World Music (Saturday nights from 8-10 on KSTX 89.1 FM), I take a look at celebrations happening around the world. This week, a fragrant festival in Morocco.

ROSE FESTIVAL

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SA Arts & Culture
11:23 am
Thu May 9, 2013

Video: San Antonio Symphony Pop-Up Concert At Rackspace

Eileen Pace TPR

It was somewhat of a cacophony at Rackspace on Tuesday, as members of the San Antonio Symphony set up for a surprise pop-up concert – right in the middle of the food truck courtyard.

New San Antonio Symphony President and CEO Jack Downey said the symphony owes a debt of gratitude to Graham Weston and the other Rackers, who came out to show their support.

"Graham has made a six-figure pledge to the symphony and he wants other corporations and people to do the same thing and help the symphony, and help our community by doing so," Downey said.

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KPAC Blog: Metropolitan Opera
2:23 pm
Wed May 8, 2013

Wagner's Anniversary And The End Of The World In 'Gotterdammerung'

Siegfried is dead!
Ken Howard Metropolitan Opera

The 2012-13 opera season has come and almost gone. For whatever wonders summer may hold, the Met Opera season of broadcasts closes this weekend with the living end, Richard Wagner's "Götterdämmerung."

In a staggering marathon of recapitulations, developments, plot changes and reversals, and a grand procession of leitmotivs that ignite a conflagration that ends the opera, the gods and the world are reborn in the cleansing fires of the overflowing Rhine.

But how does it all happen?

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Classical Spotlight
12:02 pm
Tue May 7, 2013

St. Luke's Episcopal Choir Premieres Phillips Canticles

St. Luke's Choir
courtesy of the artist

The Choir of St. Luke's Episcopal Church will present their last "Choral Evensong" this season Sunday afternoon at 4:30pm. The concert will feature the world premiere of the St. Luke's Canticles by Craig Phillips. It was commissioned by the parish and the Friends of Music for the Parish Choir for this concert, and later tour of the United Kingdom. Dr. Phillips will be present for the premiere, and more choral works of Phillips will be presented in the Service as well.

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KPAC Blog
12:03 pm
Mon May 6, 2013

Slatkin On Recording, Revitalization, And Rachmaninoff

Conductor Leonard Slatkin
Steve J. Sherman

This week the Detroit Symphony Orchestra performs two different programs at Carnegie Hall. Leonard Slatkin, their music director, is happy to be part of the Spring For Music festival. "More than any composer I can think of, you span not only his musical growth, but literally the coming of age of American music with these four [Ives] symphonies."

KPAC will air Detroit's Spring For Music concerts on Saturday & Sunday, May 18th and 19th at 7pm on KPAC & KTXI.

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World Music
2:49 pm
Sun May 5, 2013

A Funky-Fresh Sound From Somalia, With A Political History

The cover image of Dur-Dur band's Volume 5.
Album cover

Originally published on Sun May 5, 2013 6:20 pm

Imagine the capital of Somalia, Mogadishu, in the 1980s. You can't, right? Neither can most music critics. That's why the recent re-release of a record by a popular '80s-era Mogadishu dance band has caught the attention of critics lately.

The founders of Dur-Dur Band now live in Columbus, Ohio. Weekends on All Things Considered asked members Abdinur Daljir and Sahra Dawo to go to a studio there — accompanied by an interpreter — to talk about the newly reissued record and the story that precedes it.

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Arts & Culture
1:55 pm
Sat May 4, 2013

UTSA Archaeologists Announce Two Major Acequia Finds On San Antonio River

The original Spanish dam structure of the Acequia Madre. Built in 1719, Madre was the largest and first acequia constructed on the San Antonio River. It fed the Alamo and was later called the Alamo Acequia.
Eileen Pace TPR

An excavation at Brackenridge Park has unearthed irrigation systems built to serve the first settlers of San Antonio.

The find offers opportunities to study indigenous peoples and provides fuel for the UNESCO consideration of the San Antonio Missions as a World Heritage Site.

Archaeologists have long been aware of the existence of the 300-year-old irrigation systems, and even had maps and data from Spanish engineers who documented their work.

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KPAC Blog
9:59 am
Fri May 3, 2013

Maria Schneider: Classical, Jazz, Or Does It Matter?

Winter Morning Walks
Artist Led

A few weeks ago I had the wonderful opportunity to interview the remarkable composer and band leader Maria Schneider.

Her latest work as a composer is still the buzz around both classical and jazz crowds. The disc, consisting of two song cycles written for Dawn Upshaw, is called "Winter Morning Walks."

KPAC Blog: Metropolitan Opera
12:08 pm
Thu May 2, 2013

Rare Met Return For Poulenc's "Dialogues Des Carmelites"

Metropolitan Opera

I have recently been reading about the post World War II international attempts to restore Europe, both materially and spiritually.

This struggle for renewal after suffering and oppression is given a musical shape in Francis Poulenc's, "Dialogues des Carmélites." Though premiered in 1956, its origins are in the period directly after the war in 1947-49.

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