Classical

Texas Public Radio Classical Music blog and other stories.

Just reading about the Japanese film Nagasaki: Memories Of My Son is enough to get you choked up. Directed last year by 84-year-old legend Yoji Yamada, it stars longtime actor Sayuri Yoshinaga as a mother whose son dies in the 1945 bombing of Nagasaki and visits her as a ghost until she herself passes on. It's a heavy, heartbreaking tale, for which veteran composer Ryuichi Sakamoto was tasked with creating appropriately poignant music. Making things even heavier, this would be Sakomoto's first score since recovering from throat cancer last year.

When you think of an orchestra, you're probably picturing refined woodwoods, brass, and strings. But one ensemble I recently met is made up mostly of kids who play instruments made out of literal trash. This is the Recycled Orchestra from Cateura, Paraguay, and their group is the subject of a new documentary film.

San Antonio Mastersingers

San Antonio performing arts organizations are beginning their fall seasons. I spoke with the Symphony's Sebastian Lang-Lessing who said the San Antonio Symphony is starting out the season with a bang.

"The season starts with a very big bang with Carmina Burana by Carl Orff," he says.

Derek Gripper was a musician with a problem. He'd been playing classical music since he was 6 years old — violin, then piano and finally guitar. He was poised for an international career as a classical guitarist. But he remembers going to the homeland of one of his favorite composers, Johann Sebastian Bach.

"It felt kind of strange," he says. "It felt strange to be in Germany playing Bach to them."

Jason Murgo

A San Antonio Chamber music group's 13th season is set to begin.  They're called Camerata San Antonio, but their season opening show isn't in San Antonio.

"No, it's not. Our first concert is on September 9th, and that is in Boerne," says cellist and founder Ken Freudigman. "September 10th is in Kerrville. And then we skip a week and we are here in San Antonio on September 18th."

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