Arts and culture

Today our colleague Robert Siegel is retiring after four decades at NPR. He's covered everything from peace movements in East and West Germany to the Republican revolution of the 104th Congress, the mentally ill homeless and the 2008 earthquake in Sichuan Province, China.

Over his 30-year tenure as host of All Things Considered, Robert has also chased one of his lifelong passions — classical music. He's interviewed dozens of today's most compelling musicians.

Sessions from Studio A - Things Falling Apart

Jan 5, 2018
Carl Nelson / WNIJ

Things Falling Apart performing "Adama" in WNIJ's Studio A.

Find the music of Things Falling Apart at Bandcamp.

Robert Mann, a violinist and one of the founders of the Juilliard String Quartet, died on Monday at home in Manhattan. He was 97 years old.

When he was a youngster in Portland, Oregon, Mann dreamed of being a forest ranger. But destiny apparently had other plans for him: instead, he became a legendary musician.

Several years ago, Claire van Kampen was composing music for a London theater production. During a break, one of the singers asked her if she knew the story of Farinelli, the famous 18th century opera singer.

"'You'd really like the bit where he goes to Spain and sings to King Phillipe who has this bipolar disorder.' And then I started to think: Now that's an interesting story that I haven't heard about, seen."

Sessions from Studio A - Celestial Motion Wagon

Dec 28, 2017
Carl Nelson / WNIJ

Celestial Motion Wagon performs "Interstellar" in WNIJ's Studio A.

Find the music of Celestial Motion Wagon at Bandcamp.