Arts

Arts
6:23 am
Wed June 11, 2014

Half A Century For Kantorei, Half A Life For Director

A performance from 1966
Kantorei

Kantorei, the Singing Boys of Rockford, mark their 50th anniversary Friday, June 13th, with a concert at the Coronado Performing Arts Center. The program also is the final one in Rockford  for the choir’s long-time director.

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All Songs Considered
7:03 am
Tue June 10, 2014

I Hear Bells: The NPR Music Wedding Puzzler

If it's June, let the wedding bells, and the music, ring out.
iStockphoto.com

Can you hear the wedding bells? June has arrived. Theories vary on why this is the month for marriage. Old traditions like the timing of the harvest season (and pregnancies) might have had something to do with it, or more modern practicalities such as nicer weather and abundant fresh flowers. And then there's the name of the month itself, thought to be inspired by Juno, the Roman goddess of marriage.

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Summer Book Series 2014
6:44 am
Fri June 6, 2014

Rockford Native Mines His Past For First Book

Gary Lawrence is a Rockford native who uses familiar sights and people in his fiction. In Baffled and Other Stories, Lawrence takes us to the "On the Waterfront" and "Summerfest" music festivals.

One of his characters works for an aerospace firm named "Sundstrom" (a nod to his former employer Sundstrand). And two stories are set in Rockford's West High School, now West Middle School, during the early 1970s. 

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Deceptive Cadence
4:06 pm
Tue June 3, 2014

What Weeks Of Debate Have Shown Us About Women In Classical Music

A prop maker readies a portrait of Octavian (Tara Erraught) in advance of the first performance of Der Rosenkavalier at the Glyndebourne Festival last month.
Matthew Lloyd Getty Images

Originally published on Wed June 4, 2014 9:29 am

An astonishing conversation has emerged in the weeks since Irish mezzo-soprano Tara Erraught began her run as Octavian at the Glyndebourne Festival in England. Erraught was excoriated by a handful of male London critics for her weight — prompting a widespread backlash on her behalf in the aftermath of those reviews.

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2014 Summer Book Series
9:12 am
Tue June 3, 2014

2nd Big Award For Summer Book Series Author

Barrie Jean Borich, author of Body Geographic.
Credit Dan Klefstad

First an IPPY, now a LAMMY.

Barrie Jean Borich was honored last night in New York City at the 26th annual Lambda Book Awards for her creative memoir, Body Geographic.

Borich's book is featured in WNIJ's Summer Book Series, which airs Friday mornings this month.

Of last night's award, Borich tells WNIJ:

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Tiny Desk Concerts
1:32 pm
Mon June 2, 2014

Simone Dinnerstein: Tiny Desk Concert

Simone Dinnerstein performs a Tiny Desk Concert in April 2014.
Jim Tuttle NPR

Almost any pianist, from a budding beginner to a pro like Simone Dinnerstein, will tell you that one of the basic techniques of keyboard playing is also the toughest to master: making your hands to do separate things simultaneously.

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Deceptive Cadence
2:31 am
Mon June 2, 2014

The Silence And Awe Of Arvo Pärt

Estonian composer Arvo Pärt, creator of contemplative music, photographed in 1990 by influential patron Betty Freeman.
Betty Freeman ECM Records

Originally published on Tue June 3, 2014 11:54 am

Arvo Pärt is one of the few living composers to find popularity beyond the borders of classical music. R.E.M.'s Michael Stipe and Bjork are big fans.

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Free Range Radio
4:57 pm
Sun June 1, 2014

Maya And Studs: The 1970 Interview

President Obama presents The Presidential Medal of Freedom to Maya Angelou in 2010.
Credit public domain

Her’s is a death that stopped us all in our tracks this week. Maya Angelou…she of 50 honorary degrees, the National Medal of Arts, the Presidential Medal of Freedom… had clearly led a full life. Who else could write SEVEN autobiographies? And die working on an eighth? 86 years… and our collective reaction when we heard the news this week said “too soon, too soon, Ms. Angelou.” 

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Deceptive Cadence
2:02 am
Fri May 30, 2014

Post-Apocalyptic Picnics And Hollywood Steakhouses In Gabriel Kahane's LA

Gabriel Kahane is the rare musician who travels easily between classical, musical theater and pop. His new album is The Ambassador.
Josh Goleman Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Sat May 31, 2014 5:35 pm

Though New York City-based Gabriel Kahane wasn't raised there, The Ambassador feels like a musical tour of Los Angeles. The album makes 10 stops in the city where the composer and singer-songwriter was born and only came to appreciate later in life, each with a specific address used as the song title.

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Arts
7:23 am
Thu May 29, 2014

Meet The Summer Book Series Authors

Gary Lawrence, author of Baffled.
Credit Dan Klefstad

The WNIJ listening area is a hotbed of literature, according to Dan Klefstad, host of Morning Edition and editor for the Book Series. Since the summer of 2012, Dan has interviewed more than twenty writers of fiction, poetry, creative essays and memoirs -- all from northern Illinois and southern Wisconsin.

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