WFIT Features

We look back at the history of the Boston Symphony Orchestra this week, featuring a 1955 RCA Victor recording celebrating the Orchestra's 75th anniversary, narrated by Milton Cross, the voice of the Metropolitan Opera for fifty years.

We'll have century-old recordings of the orchestra, directed by  Karl Muck, performances under the baton of Serge Koussevitzky and others, and we'll even hear what Arthur Fiedler has to say about the Boston Pop

Arvo Part
NPR

We have music from Russia, Ukraine, and countries of the Baltic this week, ranging from Rachmaninoff's channeling of age-old Orthodox chant to some recently-written music from Henryk Gorecki, Arvo Part, and Valentin Silvestrov -- with some out-of-character organ music by Jean Sibelius included as well.

It's a lot of unusual music from ancient hymnody to piano miniatures that approach New Age sounds. As always, it all begins at ten o'clock on Thursday night.

Bach's B minor Mass was an inchoate collection of movements at the time of his death. Parts of it had been performed, most of it hadn't, and the complete score didn't get published for another century.

And it wasn't until 1968 that Nikolaus Harnoncourt and the Concentus Musicus Wien recorded it for a major German label  with actual period instruments in a reading that played a central role in the historical performance movement.

We'll have the Harnoncourt perfomance of the B minor -- the way Bach wrote it and intended it -- as our sole work this week.

Antonín Dvořák
NPR

What's a chestnut?

It's one of those pieces of music that is heard so regularly that just about everyone knows it -- even those who profess not to like classical music.

It's been an exhausting week here in Central Florida. Let's take it easy for a couple of hours with the greatest hits of Dvorak, Mussorgsky, Beethoven, Vaughan Williams, Vivaldi, and Chopin as we listen to a concert of chestnuts this Thursday.

Pages