Blog Posts on Arts and Culture

Spasibo

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Come to Italy with me!

A few years ago, my colleague Laura Garrison formed a club for WXXI listeners who are passionate about travel.  She and former morning host Simon Pontin led a trip to Austria in 2008. Last year, a small group went to Costa Rica with WRUR’s Scott Regan. When Laura asked me to co-host a trip to northern Italy in 2011, I was thrilled.

Three days in Boston

If you’re lucky to spend time in Boston when the weather’s nice, walk across the Arthur Fiedler Memorial Bridge and trace deeply-carved composers’ names on the band shell where the Boston Pops plays in the summer along the banks of the Charles River. Spend half the time getting lost in opulent Beacon Hill. Follow the Black Heritage Trail. It’s all good.
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Purcell's coded lament

In June, BBC’s Radio 3 polled listeners on their favorite aria.  If you’re into opera, you might guess Puccini’s “Nessun Dorma” or "Un bel di” soared to the top of the list, or maybe “La donna e mobile” from Verdi’s Rigoletto.  But the winner surprised everyone; it was a three-century old song from a relatively obscure opera by Henry Purcell.  Officially, England’s most

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Miracle Fish

I guess we owe some kind of grudging debt to the underhanded business manager that stole Leonard Cohen’s money a few years back. That betrayal plucked the songwriter from his Buddhist retreat on Mount Baldy and sent him back out on the road to refill the coffers. A lot of people have had a lot of pleasure in a lot of concert halls because of what that guy did. Leonard’s one of them, actually.

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The light of day

The mine was dark, damp, and chilly.   When I came to the surface, I had dreams about it. Bad dreams.

 

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Why does this man have a collection of chickens?

RPO Music Director Christopher Seaman has returned to Rochester after summer travels to Australia, New Zealand, and the U.K. The big question is, what's with the chickens? Find out this Thursday morning on Classical 91.5 . . .

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Kitchen Dreams

Although I usually discuss Matters Musical, I thought today I'd take a detour...straight into the kitchen.

How not to get to Carnegie Hall

No one taught me how to practice. Just do it, they said, which is how I honed my amazing ability to daydream while moving my fingers. I can play a Bach sonata and keep a running commentary in my head: what’s for dinner? I must send flowers to Aunt Margie (ooops! skipped a note!) Are my favorite jeans in the dryer? Get cat food!

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Small town art scene

Privately-funded public art brightened small towns and markets this summer.  My thanks to Classical 91.5 listener Al Kopec, who sent in pictures from the Windmill Farm and Craft Market between Dundee and Penn Yan, where a large mural appeared on one of the buildings.

 

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