The Fabulous Philadelphians on WRTI: Karina Canellakis Conducts, Pianist Emanuel Ax Plays Beethoven

Mar 17, 2020

At a time when we need the music the most, concert halls around the world are dark. The Philadelphia Orchestra’s 2019-2020 season, so exciting in this 250th Beethoven anniversary year, has been put on hold. However, Philadelphia Orchestra broadcasts of concerts from earlier this season will continue on WRTI 90.1.

And with the extraordinary performances by this great Orchestra as emotional and spiritual support, we will come through the difficult period that lies ahead in the wake of a health crisis that has affected people all over the world.

On Sunday, March 22nd at 1 pm on WRTI 90.1 and Monday, March 23rd at 7 PM on WRTI HD-2, one of the most beloved musicians of our time, pianist Emanuel Ax—who made his Philadelphia Orchestra debut in 1975—will perform Beethoven’s Piano Concerto No. 2, from a concert last month at Verizon Hall.

Composer Zosha Di Castri
Credit David Adamcyk

And, in keeping with the Orchestra’s 2019-2020 themes of BeethovenNow and WomenNow, the concert also features a Philadelphia Orchestra first-ever performance of a work from the 21st century by the Canadian composer Zosha Di Castri, titled Lineage.

The concert also brings to the podium for her debut performance with the Philadelphians, Karina Cannelakis. Ms. Canellakis, the newly appointed chief conductor of the Netherlands Radio Philharmonic, principal guest conductor of the Berlin Radio Symphony and a Curtis graduate— will conclude her challenging program with Witold Lutosławski’s most often performed composition, his Concerto for Orchestra, which he wrote in mid-career during the early 1950s.

During intermission, WRTI’s Susan Lewis chats with Emanuel Ax in his dressing room, and Bliss Michelson meets backstage with Karina Cannelakis.

Don’t miss this exciting concert on Sunday, March 22nd from 1 to 3 PM on WRTI 90.1, and streaming at Listen again on Monday, March 23rd at 7 PM pn WRTI HD-2.


Di Castri – Lineage (first Philadelphia Orchestra performance)

Beethoven – Piano Concerto No. 2

Emanuel Ax, piano


Lutosławski – Concerto for Orchestra

The Philadelphia Orchestra

Karina Cannelakis, conductor

Gregg Whiteside is producer and host of  The Philadelphia Orchestra in Concert broadcasts, every Sunday at 1 PM on WRTI 90.1, streaming online at, and on our mobile app! Listen again on Mondays at 7 PM on WRTI HD-2