Itâ€™s a daily joy to offer you the best recordings from the WXXI library from 6 to 10am, with arts news from Rochesterâ€™s rich cultural calendar, updates from NPR, the Mystery Piece at 6:40am, the Composers' Datebook at 7:20am, and the Writer's Almanac with Garrison Keillor at 8:20am.ď»ż Hereâ€™s a look at whatâ€™s coming up in the next few weeks:
A study by the Internet-based market research firm Harris Interactive revealed that 57 percent of Americans ended 2011 with unused vacation time, working, on average, 11 of their allotted days off. Thatâ€™s 70 percent of their potential time to relax and spend time with family and friends!
Why do so many of us work rather than rest?
We might take a cue from classical musicians who find creative ways to combine work and pleasure, especially in the summer months.
The Rochester Oratorio Society announced a commission this week in celebration of the upcoming 150th anniversary of the Emancipation Proclamation and other milestones. The ROS will commission composer Glenn McClure to write a piece including texts, instruments and musical resources from Ghana, West Africa, and Western New York.
For quick reference, I've created this handy excitement level ratings chart for you. It's not in chronological order, and the opinions expressed do not in any way represent WXXI, its underwriters, or contributing supporters.
A decade ago, when guitarist Sharon Isbin recorded the lullaby "Cancion de Cuna," by Cuban composer Leo Brower, she wrote that she was in a state of bliss, remembering her experience of "floating down the Napo River in a dugout canoe with piranhas, electric eels, and glistening crocodiles afoot."
This week, when she plays the same piece with the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra, she'll hear it in a whole new light. Read my concert preview in this week's City newspaper here:
The RPOâ€™s Annual Meeting, Having Been Held in Rochesterâ€™s Opulent Eastman Theatre, Later Discussed by The Busts of Bach and Beethoven Over the Exits
Johann: GrĂĽĂź dich! That brass quintet, sehr gut! Donâ€™t you think, my old friend?
Ludwig: Ja, ja, I almost heard it! I think it was almost as compelling as the playersâ€™ rousing performance of The Firebird by the Russian Wild One, Herr Stravinsky. (He pauses, leans over, whispering) But I believe the young man who spoke afterward, Herr Owens, may have a Napoleonic complex. Did you catch all his mumbling about fame and glory, making the RPO famous around the world?
The RPOâ€™s excellent Gershwin CD didnâ€™t make the list of Grammy contenders announced today in Los Angeles. About pianist Jon Nakamatsuâ€™s 2007 much-praised collaboration with the RPO, my colleague Mordecai Lipshutz said, â€śAt least theyâ€™re selling well.â€ť
"That's not right!" exclaimed my friend Carl Pultz when he heard the news that the RPO had been left off the list. Carl says this proves the nominating system is "corrupt."