JPR Classics

JPR Classics is a place to come for all things classical in the State of Jefferson.  We'll honor our rich classical heritage while looking to the future, showcasing inspired performances by the next generation of classical musicians. The classics live on JPR!

Oliver Knussen, Composer And Conductor, Dies At 66

Jul 10, 2018

Composer and conductor Oliver Knussen, one of Britain's most influential contemporary classical figures, died Sunday, July 8, at the age of 66. His passing was announced by his publisher, Faber Music, but no cause of death was given.

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Summer is in the air. So are the bugs. They're also on the ground and in the trees, sometimes in your hair, everywhere else. But when bugs get in your ears, the results can be wonderful.

Boston Symphony Orchestra principal flutist Elizabeth Rowe has filed a lawsuit against the orchestra, claiming that she is making substantially less each year than her closest peer — a man.

Featured Works for July – First Concert
(*Indicates July birthday)

July 2 M Christoph Willibald von Gluck*: Selections from Don Juan
July 3 T Leos Janácek*: Lachian Dances
July 4 W Leonard Bernstein: On the Waterfront
July 5 T Paul Ben-Haim*: Pastorale Variée for Clarinet
July 6 F Ludwig van Beethoven: Piano Sonata No. 17; “The Tempest”

Max Richter's music seems ready-made for movies – and that's not in any way a put down. The music is powerful on its own, but certain pieces take on new depth when paired with well-designed visuals.

A Viola Sings Of Strength In Sadness

Jun 21, 2018

Here is a music video in which the things you don't see or hear are almost as important as the things you do.

The Women's March and #MeToo movement have helped raise the volume for women's voices across the country. But one place where women still struggle to be heard is in America's symphony halls. Take a look at which composers the top U.S. orchestras are performing in the upcoming season, and you will find some surprising disparities.

Featured Works for June – First Concert
(*Indicates June birthday)

June 1 F Ernest Bloch: Concerto Grosso No. 1

June 4 M Ottorino Respighi: Ancient Airs and Dances Suite No. 1
June 5 T Leonardo Leo: Concerto for Cello, Two Violins and Continuo
June 6 W Richard Wagner: Siegfried Idyll
June 7 T Joseph Haydn: Keyboard Concerto in D major
June 8 F Robert Schumann: Piano Sonata No. 2

Third Coast Percussion: Tiny Desk Concert

May 29, 2018

Back at the beginning of time, the human voice was the very first instrument. Probably close in second place were folks banging on stuff – in other words, percussionists. The quartet of gentlemen who form the Chicago-based Third Coast Percussion takes primordial pounding into a completely distinctive new league. To be sure, in this Tiny Desk performance, they'll play their sophisticated, modern marimbas and vibraphones, but be on the lookout for the subtleties of tuned cowbells and 3/4" galvanized steel pipes, like those found at the local hardware store.

'My Voice Should Be Heard': #MeToo And The Women Of Opera

May 28, 2018

The #MeToo movement has been a cultural reckoning across industries, from Hollywood to restaurants — but one of the oldest that's been affected is classical music. In March, James Levine, a longtime conductor of the Metropolitan Opera in New York City, was fired for allegations of sexual misconduct. And now, centuries-old works from Carmen to Don Giovanni are being challenged for misogynistic plots and themes.

Don't call Thea Musgrave a "woman composer."

"When I'm composing, I'm a human being," she insists. "It's not a question of sexuality."

James Levine Accused Of Sexual Misconduct By 5 More Men

May 19, 2018

In a suit filed Friday by the Metropolitan Opera, five men have made newly public accusations against conductor and pianist James Levine, who was closely associated with the Met for four decades. In total, nine men have now come forward, either by name or anonymously, with accusations against Levine.

Remembering The Soprano Who Sang Like A Laser Beam

May 17, 2018

The myriad stories about Swedish soprano Birgit Nilsson usually fall into two groups: the ones about her enormous, laser-focused voice and those about her rapier-sharp wit.

A Vibraphone Workout With A Tinfoil Twist

May 16, 2018

Call it a percussionist's answer to Flight of the Bumblebee — with a twist. "Filigree," by composer Robert Honstein, is a rapid-fire workout for solo vibraphone. The instrument's bars, however, are partly covered in tinfoil, which adds a unique layer of color to the music.