Grammy Award

Courtesy of Michael Tilson Thomas

Before stepping down 10 months ago at age 75, the San Francisco Symphony’s (SFS) Michael Tilson Thomas (MTT) owned the longest active tenure of any music director of a major American orchestra; he’d held the position since 1995. Though he’s played piano, composed, and conducted at an elite level since his teenage years, Tilson Thomas has always been more than the classical music wunderkind who grew up to become the great maestro. There was a piece of himself he’d inherited, a piece that hadn’t necessarily been ignored but hadn’t been foregrounded in his work either.

In their 2018 CD, The Crossing sings Lansing McLoskey's oratorio, Zealot Canticles: A Musical Plea for Tolerance. WRTI's Susan Lewis talks with The Crossing's conductor Donald Nally about the poetry, choral writing, and social issues that converge in this work, that won The Crossing a 2019 Grammy award for Best Choral Performance. Listen to The Crossing perform Zealot Canticles, and more, on WRTI, Sunday, October 11th at 4 PM.

What has been life been like for Philadelphia-based composer Jennifer Higdon since the start of the pandemic? In this late May, 2020 TIME IN interview with WRTI’s Susan Lewis, Jennifer shares how the COVID-19 shutdown has influenced her writing and teaching, and prompted her to explore new activities, including listening to a certain podcast and driving the first car she's owned in 22 years!

ABC Photo Archives/Getty Images

It's summer camp season, which may call to mind Allan Sherman's popular parody, "Hello Muddah, Hello Fadduh,” —inspired by letters sent home from overnight camp by the comedian's son. The song hit No. 2 on Billboard's "Hot 100" list in the summer of 1963 and won a Grammy Award for Comedy in '64.

Becky Oehlers Photography

The Crossing has been callled "Extraordinary" by The New York Times, "ardently angelic' by the Los Angeles Times, and "something of a miracle" by The Philadelphia Inquirer.  This 24-member, professional chamber ensemble sang out from the WRTI 90.1 Performance Studio on June 14, 2018.