Tom Huizenga

Tom Huizenga is a music producer, reporter and blogger for NPR Music. He hosts NPR's classical music blog Deceptive Cadence.

A regular contributor of stories about classical music on NPR's news programs, Huizenga regularly introduces intriguing new classical CDs to listeners on the weekend version of All Things Considered. He contributes to NPR Music's "Song of the Day."

During his time at NPR, Huizenga spent seven years as a producer, writer and editor for NPR's Peabody Award-winning daily classical music magazine Performance Today, and for the programs SymphonyCast and World of Opera. He produced the live broadcast of Gershwin's Porgy & Bess from Washington National Opera at the Kennedy Center, concerts from NPR's Studio 4A and performances on the road at Summerfest La Jolla, the Gilmore International Keyboard Festival and New York's Le Poisson Rouge.

Huizenga's radio career began at the University of Michigan, where he graduated in 1986. During his four year tenure, he regularly hosted several radio programs (opera, jazz, free-form, experimental radio) at Ann Arbor's WCBN. As a student in the Enthnomusicology department, Huizenga studied and performed traditional court music from Indonesia. He also studied English Literature and voice, while writing for the university's newspaper.

After college Huizenga took his love of music and broadcasting to New Mexico, where he served as music director for NPR member station KRWG, in Las Cruces, and taught radio production at New Mexico State University.

Huizenga lives in Takoma Park, MD, with his wife Valeska Hilbig, a public affairs director at the Smithsonian. In his spare time he writes about music for the Washington Post, overloads on concerts and movies and swings a tennis racket wildly on many local courts.

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Classics in Concert
11:47 am
Mon January 23, 2012

Live Tonight At 6 ET: Lang Lang's Chinese New Year At WQXR

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Lang Lang joins the Quintessenso Children's Choir for a concert of Chinese New Year favorites, part of WQXR's China in New York festival.
Marco Borggreve

Originally published on Mon January 23, 2012 9:13 am

The outburst of Western classical music in China over the past decade has been called nothing short of a frenzy by some observers. Estimates vary widely, but it's reported that somewhere between 50 and 100 million Chinese children are studying piano, violin and other Western instruments. One piano manufacturer alone, the Pearl River Company, builds around 100,000 pianos per year.

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Deceptive Cadence
2:35 pm
Wed January 18, 2012

Talk Like An Opera Geek: In the Basement With The Basses

Seismic singing from the bottommost voices: Know your basso buffo from your basso profondo.
iStock

Originally published on Wed January 18, 2012 2:12 pm

(Talk Like An Opera Geek attempts to decode the intriguing and intimidating lexicon of the opera house.)

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Deceptive Cadence
9:18 am
Mon January 16, 2012

Around The Classical Internet: January 13, 2011

In better days, a New York City Opera attendee takes in a display about the beleagured company's rich history.
courtesy of New York City Opera

Originally published on Fri January 13, 2012 6:15 pm

  • As of Monday, New York City Opera had locked out orchestra and chorus members though the company's first production of the 2011-12 season, a weeklong run of La Traviata at the Brooklyn Academy of Music scheduled to begin Feb. 12. Risa Heller, a spokeswoman for the opera, says City Opera is taking things 'one day at a time.' But with a first performance scheduled for Feb. 12 at the Brooklyn Academy of Music, time is running out.
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Deceptive Cadence
3:25 pm
Wed January 11, 2012

My Holidays With Loriot

German comedian Loriot.
Flickr Creative Commons

Originally published on Wed January 11, 2012 1:16 pm

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Deceptive Cadence
8:06 am
Wed January 11, 2012

Janáček For Voices: The Choral Side Of An Unusual Composer

A new album by Cappella Amsterdam explores rarely performed choral music by Leos Janáček.
Marco Borggreve Harmonia Mundi

Originally published on Tue January 10, 2012 3:00 pm

There was nothing ordinary about Czech composer Leos Janáček. He set one opera in a barnyard and another on the moon. He fell for a married woman more than 30 years his junior, proceeding to write more than 700 love letters. And in his mid-60s, he churned out piece after amazing piece in one of classical music's most impressive late surges.

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Deceptive Cadence
2:35 pm
Mon January 9, 2012

Pianist Alexis Weissenberg Dies At 82

Alexis Weissenberg's skill at playing Schubert on the accordion saved his life during World War II.
Patrick Kovarik AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Mon December 31, 2012 8:51 am

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Deceptive Cadence
12:40 pm
Sun December 11, 2011

Clouds, Concertos And A Trip To Fiji: New Classical Albums

Cloud and Light, by Tshio Hosokawa, was written for the ancient Japanes instrument called the sho.
ECM

Originally published on Fri February 10, 2012 2:07 pm

With all the chatter about the death of the compact disc, anxiety in the recording industry and the domination of downloads, the flood of CDs overflowing my mailbox never seems to recede. Need a new Bruckner 4th, an Adès anthology or piano music by Pärt? How about Azerbaijani concertos, Schubert sonatas or a new Midsummer Night's Dream?

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Deceptive Cadence
2:18 pm
Thu December 8, 2011

NPR Classical's 10 Favorite Albums Of 2011

Fiction by the Ebene Quartet was one of our favorite albums this year.
Virgin Classics

Originally published on Thu December 8, 2011 12:41 pm

The silly season of endless lists is upon us. You might notice that here at Deceptive Cadence, we don't even try to enumerate which albums were "best" — we use the word "favorite" quite intentionally, as you'll see from the pan-genre list painstakingly compiled with our NPR Music colleagues.

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Deceptive Cadence
3:20 pm
Wed November 30, 2011

Talk Like An Opera Geek: Tuning Into Tenors

Tenors may be characterized as head-strong and unpredictable, but they can produce pretty sounds.
iStock

Originally published on Wed November 30, 2011 1:21 pm

(Talk Like An Opera Geek attempts to decode the intriguing and intimidating lexicon of the opera house.)

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Tiny Desk Concerts
10:52 am
Mon November 28, 2011

Gabriel Kahane: Tiny Desk Concert

Cristina M. Fletes/NPR

Originally published on Sat November 26, 2011 12:00 pm

  • Audio Only: Gabriel Kahane's Tiny Desk Concert

Gabriel Kahane seems to enjoy blurring the lines between indie rock and indie classical. He arrived at the NPR Music offices with a string quartet and an electric guitarist in tow, and though they hadn't played together for long, you'd never know it.

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