"Fate" is the unifying thread as guest conductor Andrey Boreyko conducts The Philadelphians in an exciting program beginning with the Entry of the Gods Into Valhalla from Wagner's Das Reingold, and culminating in the brilliant and brassy apotheosis of the "fate" motif that Tchaikovsky used in all four movements of his Symphony No. 5.
In between, a spectacular display of drumming by soloist Colin Currie in Alberich Saved, a percussion concerto by the American composer Christopher Rouse.
Join us for the third installment of Wagner's "Der Ring des Nibelungen," on the occasion of the 200th anniversary of the composer's birth. Jay Hunter Morris reprises his acclaimed portrayal of the title hero, Deborah Voigt sings Brünnhilde, Mark Delavan is the Wanderer, and Eric Owens sings Alberich. Principal Conductor Fabio Luisi is on the podium. Saturday, April 20, *11 am to 5 pm (*note early start time).
In the early 1900s, royalties from sales of sheet music produced a steady source of income to composers and music publishers. But radio changed all that. WRTI’s Meridee Duddleston sat down with a legal expert to learn how.
It was one thing to sit at a piano in a parlor and play a Stephan Foster tune from sheet music propped up on a music stand. But a broadcast of music over the airwaves was a different thing entirely! The advent of radio as a tool for entertainment set the music industry on its heels and brought about new interpretations of copyright law, just as the digital age has done.
MERIDEE DUDDLESTON: Collecting royalties from sales of sheet music could be controlled. But intellectual property lawyer Gary Rosen says making music available to everyone over the airwaves for free was as disruptive to the music industry as the Internet has been. Back in the early 1900s, composers saw radio broadcasts as a threat to their creativity and livelihoods - a threat, Rosen emphasizes, that copyright law was designed to prevent.
GARY ROSEN: Copyright is given, not as a gift to composers, but it’s meant to benefit the public by spurring creativity.
MUSIC: John Philip Sousa's The Washington Post
DUDDLESTON: The music industry and popular composers like John Philip Sousa concluded that a radio broadcast was a public performance of their copyrighted works. They demanded that the radio industry begin to pay royalties. And they banded together to enforce their rights in a way that avoided a logistical nightmare.
ROSEN: Their solution was to form this performing rights organization in which they pool their copyrights and then licensed them on what’s called a blanket basis.
DUDDLESTON: The American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers (ASCAP) was the first blanket licensing organization. Rosen says blanket copyright licenses for radio have worked the way they were intended.
ROSEN: And the fact that a mechanism was formed to actually enforce that performance right and create an income stream for composers has had a tremendous impact on the quality and variety of American music – popular, jazz, classical.
Gary A. Rosen is the author of Unfair to Genius: The Strange and Litigious Career of Ira B. Arnstein
A Philadelphia-area jazz singer, who interprets songs in many languages, is also drawing attention to environmental issues. As WRTI’s Susan Lewis reports, Phyllis Chapell finds that music is a way to reach people on many levels.
Russian choral music developed over centuries - informed by tradition, the state, the church, and eventually other parts of the world. As WRTI’s Susan Lewis reports, this month, The Philadelphia Singers contrasts the works of two Russian masters, who created their sacred choral music over a century apart.
The Philadelphia Singers performs selections from Tchaikovsky’s 1878 Liturgy of St. John Chrysostom, together with Alfred Schnittke's Choir Concerto, written in 1984-85, at the Cathedral Basilica of Saints Peter and Paul in Center City, Philadelphia on Sunday April 28th. Information here.
Music Lives at the Woodmere Art Museum in Chestnut Hill, where, as WRTI's Jim Cotter reports, the role of jazz in the history of the United Nations is being celebrated - close to where the UN’s Headquarters might have been.
Jim Cotter’s full interview with jazz bass player Warren Oree.
A United Nations Jazz Jam: Musicians from Around the World, April 26th, 6 to 8 pm at the Woodmere Art Museum. Performers include Yoomi Kwan (Korea, on cello); Rosie Langabeer (New Zealand), on accordion and piano); Atiba (Trinidad, on steel drums); Gloria Galante (Italy, on harp); Qin-Qian (China, on Erhu); Koki Soul (French Canadian, guitar/percussion/vocals); Phyllis Hadad (Brazil, on piano) and Moguane Mahloeoe (South Africa, on percussion).
One of the most recent instrumentalists to be added to the roster of soloists in orchestral performances is the percussionist. As WRTI’s Jim Cotter reports, it’s a role that makes unique demands.
In a program that also features works by Wagner and Tchaikovsky, Colin Currie performs Christopher Rouses' Der gerettete Alberich with The Philadelphia Orchestra here on WRTI on Sunday, April 21 at 2 pm.
It really is spring, and our thoughts turn to... Now is the Time, Sunday, April 14th at 10 pm. Why not make up a story, and let the boys start. Eric Whitacre's emotionally surprising A Boy and a Girl leads us to the fresh Gate of Michael McDermott. A Charles Wuorinen Divertimento, bracing and lively, hints at—
Wait; now it's the girls' turn—a Tell-Tale Fantasy, perhaps, here told by Jane Brockman. Then six multi-tracked trumpets blast us into Lois Vierk's brilliant Cirrus, and all that's left, after all that story, is a single human voice. Joelle Wallach brings in a tenor to sing up into the silence. It really is spring.