KPAC Blog

The KPAC Blog features classical music news and analysis.  From a detailed look at Wagner's masterpiece "Parsifal," to an inside look at the Latin Grammys, the KPAC Blog features writings about some of the music played on air as well as other interviews and essays about classical music.

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San Antonio Symphony on KPAC
10:35 pm
Wed August 14, 2013

Mozart, Ravel Highlights Of Symphony Broadcast

Laion

This week's San Antonio Symphony broadcast features quintessentially American music by Aaron Copland, as well as the American influence on the French composer Maurice Ravel. Mozart's final symphony rounds out the program.

Aaron Copland's "Rodeo" helped put the composer on the map; its rustic rhythms were a hit in 1942, and later held up as the epitome of Americana when used in a popular ad campaign, "Beef: It's What's For Dinner."

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Classical Music
8:38 pm
Tue August 13, 2013

Why Are American Orchestras Afraid Of New Symphonies?

David Robertson, a passionate champion of new music, conducts the St. Louis Symphony Orchestra on tour in Berlin.
Dilip Vishwanat St. Louis Symphony

Originally published on Tue August 20, 2013 11:22 am

  • The American Symphony: Music And Ideas With David Robertson

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Deceptive Cadence
12:15 am
Mon August 12, 2013

Chris Thile Looks Back To Bach

Chris Thile's new album, Sonatas and Partitas, draws from material written by Johann Sebastian Bach in the early 1700s.
Brantley Gutierrez Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Wed August 14, 2013 1:09 pm

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First Listen
12:14 am
Mon August 12, 2013

First Listen: Anna Netrebko, 'Verdi'

Anna Netrebko's Verdi comes out August 20.
Kristian Schuller DG

Originally published on Wed August 21, 2013 11:16 am

At the opening of Anna Netrebko's new album, Verdi, we find her in the role of Lady Macbeth, reading a letter confirming the fulfillment of a prophecy made by Shakespeare's (and Verdi's) infamous witches.

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Deceptive Cadence
9:36 am
Sun August 11, 2013

The American Symphonic Legacy: Not Just For White Guys

George Walker is considered the elder statesman of today's African-American composers.
Gregory Walker Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Tue August 20, 2013 11:23 am

This summer, NPR Classical has been looking for the great American symphony — or at least some idea of what it might sound like.

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Classical Spotlight
8:40 am
Fri August 9, 2013

Video: Miguel Del Aguila Featured With Olmos Ensemble

John Clare and Miguel del Aguila
John Clare / Texas Public Radio

This weekend kicks off the first of two concerts for the Olmos Ensemble. Led by oboist Mark Ackerman, the nineteen year old chamber group, will feature "Sizzlin' Latin American/Spanish Music" this Sunday at the First Unitarian Universalist Church in San Antonio.

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Deceptive Cadence
2:44 pm
Tue August 6, 2013

And in This Corner: A Baritone Fights For Opera On The BBC

Baritone Thomas Hampson takes his punches for opera on a BBC talk show.
Dario Acosta

Originally published on Fri August 9, 2013 4:32 pm

With an interview show named HARDtalk I suppose the host might be expected to come out swinging. And recently the BBC's Sarah Montague did not disappoint.

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KPAC Blog
10:15 am
Mon August 5, 2013

Cool Classical For Those Dog Days Of Summer

Etnobit Percussion
Credit courtesy of the artist

With temperatures over 100 degress and lows not dipping below 80 degrees, we're all looking for ways to stay cool. Thoughts of cooler climates and scenery are welcome.

Enter Etnobit Percussion Group! From the oldest and deepest lake, Lake Baikal, these four have created music - from ice!

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Deceptive Cadence
9:04 am
Mon August 5, 2013

A Pulitzer Winner Asks: Why Write Symphonies?

Pulitzer Prize-winning composer Kevin Puts is still inspired by the age-old symphonic form.
Andrew Shapter

Originally published on Tue August 13, 2013 4:32 pm

In 2007, I was interviewed by a journalist over lunch a day before the premiere of my Violin Concerto. One of his first questions was, "So why do you write in these old forms, the symphony, the concerto ... ?" I told him that these were simply titles which imply nothing about the form, which was another thing entirely. But it led me to ask myself: What is a symphony these days? If it no longer comprises a four-movement structure with an energetic first movement, a slow movement, a scherzo, and some kind of quick rondo, then what exactly characterizes it?

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KPAC blog
2:38 pm
Fri August 2, 2013

When Virginals Were Not So Chaste: Alan Feinberg's 'Basically Bull'

Composer John Bull (1563-1626)
Wikipedia Commons user Lethesl cc

A virginal is a spinet harpsichord, normally without legs. The name is obscure even by Oxford English Dictionary standards, but one hint is that the name came from the young and chaste virginal girls that would spend hours and hours practicing their music in cold and drafty castles and mansions.

It was an unusual time for music in Britain.

There were battles over whether or not music belonged in the church and the only people that had music before the printed note were musicians and those with enough money to outfit their splendid homes with music rooms.

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