Classical Music

Nina Cardona / Nashville Public Radio

Nashville high schooler Clara Warford has had quite a senior year: the harpist earned a spot in the Carnegie Hall National Youth Orchestra and an acceptance letter from Juilliard. Fresh off her senior recital, Warford brought a selection of music from her recital program to play in Studio C.

Today marks the much-discussed 50th anniversary of the release of Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band, the Beatles masterpiece considered by some to be the “most important rock & roll album ever made”

Photo Courtesy of The Nashville Symphony

The last time Zuill Bailey played with the Nashville Symphony, he gave a Grammy-winning performance. It’s an experience the virtuoso cellist describes as “capturing lightning in a bottle.”

Nina Cardona / Nashville Public Radio

This week's Live in Studio C featured three Midstate freelance musicians and friends. French horn player Jennifer Kummer and pianist Alessandra Volpi joined clarinetist Emily Bowland on several of her recent recitals to play a trio, which they played in full for us in Studio C.

Nina Cardona / Nashville Public Radio

Since 1868, Americans have set aside time at the end of May to visit the burial sites of veterans. The date of what used to be called "Decoration Day" was chosen for practical reasons: If you're going to place flowers on a grave, what better time than when plenty of flowers are blooming? But it's appropriate timing on a symbolic level, too. The contrast between seasonal beauty and the ugliness of war is an apt metaphor for the bittersweet combination of fond memories and painful loss that lies at the heart of Memorial Day.

It's a complex mix of emotions that music has long explored. Here are a handful of selections that lie in the meeting place between love and loss, war and peace, beauty and discomfort.

Nina Cardona / Nashville Public Radio

Portara Ensemble is ending its season of choral concerts with a program benefiting Nashville's street newspaper, The Contributor. In choosing the music, Director Jason Shelton took inspiration from the poetry that homeless and formerly homeless vendors submit to the paper and the stories of the vendors lives. The concert From Beginning to End: Music of Live, Love and Loss is at 4pm Sunday at Downtown Presbyterian Church, which has long housed The Contributor's vendor office. About 30 members of the choir gathered in Studio C to give us a preview.

You have a few more days to catch “The Dada Effect: An Anti-Aesthetic and Its Influence” at Vanderbilt’s Fine Arts Gallery before it closes on May 27th. The exhibit explores the rise of the artistic movement in the wake of WWI, when Dadaists gathered to forge an anti-establishment, anti-bourgeois and anti-war philosophy that rejected conventions of the past.

Nina Cardona / Nashville Public Radio

For their Spring Concert, the women of Vox Grata are using music to speak out against an abuse suffered by girls and women around the world: human trafficking. Under the direction of Jeanette MacCallum, they've crafted a program that both questions why slavery still exists and seeks to give hope for the future. They'll perform the show at 7:00 pm, May 18th at Nashville's Westminster Presbyterian Church.

One of the most staggering aspects of the experience of grief is the unrelenting march of time. Your life seems to come to a screeching halt, but the outside world will continue to spin, the sun will rise and your neighbors will take out their garbage on trash day. This “inexorability of the passage of time” is an experience that preoccupied John Harbison as he worked on a requiem, the centuries-old sacred music tradition associated with loss and mourning.

Nina Cardona / Nashville Public Radio

The Nashville Symphony and Chorus will soon perform and record a requiem written by American composer John Harbison around the time of the 9/11 attacks. A portion of the chorus and their director, Tucker Biddlecombe, used their visit to Studio C to give examples of how Harbison's music works in the context of the long tradition of requiems, plus some insight as to how the music is constructed.

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