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Pianist Jonathan Biss on Beethoven As Cultural Hero

Pianist Jonathan Biss talks with Classical 101's Jennifer Hambrick about Beethoven as Cultural Icon.
10, 2013

Last week I told you about concert pianist Jonathan Biss’ online course on Beethoven’s piano sonatas, offered through Coursera in conjunction with the Curtis Institute of Music. The course has 25,000 participants, who log on weekly to hear one of the world’s foremost pianists talk about one of the greatest composers of piano music.

Online Beethoven Course Attracts 25,000 Students

3, 2013

Today is the first day of school for the nearly 25,000 students enrolled in Biss’ online course “Exploring Beethoven’s Piano Sonatas.”

Get in There and Fight

Fight scene from Il Trovatore.
30, 2013

What would you prefer to hear in performance? Every note perfectly played or the excitement of an occasional mistake? What would you rather experience? A robotic performance or the blood of an artist on stage?

Why Play Classical Music to Babies In Utero? Because They Like It!

color photograph of Amy Juravich's baby bump, with Amy holding black headphones
One British classical music writer says babies boogie in utero to classical music.
6, 2013

Think classical music can’t reach kids? One British music writer tells of his twins bopping to Beethoven – in the womb.

A Rustic Wedding and Whale Songs For Earth Day

22, 2013

Celebrating Earth Day 2013 on Symphony @7 this evening, we’ll have two works that have an outdoor setting, one with human beings in harmony with their natural surroundings, and one taking us beneath the ocean and portraying the great whales, whose realm is very much threatened by human activity.

Columbus Author Pens Classical Music Novel

12, 2013

Skiing with Bach, cooking with Beethoven and hunting with Mendelssohn – Columbus author and music teacher Debra Berndt’s novel Hips of Venus has all that and more – and that’s just Volume One.

Here Are Fleas You Want to Have

Goethe: Faust and Fleas
February 18, 2013

The flea in music! He even gets a new waistcoat.

The Beethoven-Haus’ Exhibition of Beethoven Stamps

Color photograph of the facade of the Beethoven-Haus, Bonn, Germany.
The Beethoven-Haus in Bonn, Germany, was the site of an exhibition of Beethoven postage stamps.
6, 2012

Everyone knows that Beethoven put his stamp on classical music. Now a Japanese stamp collector has shown the world how Beethoven left his mark on letters, post cards and packages everywhere.

What are your “Desert Island” recordings?

21, 2012

Most “Desert Island” recording lists seem to rotate the same 20 or so artists and composers, which means I don’t bother to look at them. However, this list is quite interesting by what it doesn’t do…it doesn’t limit the musical genre.

Arianna Quartet Performs Peruvian-Inspired String Quartet Sunday

16, 2012

As a kid learning how to play the piano, composer Gabriela Lena Frank says, “I would try and make my Beethoven sound a little more Peruvian by adding flourishes that the guitar players might use, or accents in a way that was reminiscent of what pan pipe players might do.” The unique sounds of Peruvian music would later find their way into Frank’s Leyendas: An Andean Walkabout, part Peruvian travelogue, part family history recounting in the genre of the string quartet Frank’s first trip to her mother’s homeland.