Rachel Bearinger

The Cedar Valley Chamber Music Festival’s 2016 Season kicked off with a live Performance Iowa broadcast in Iowa Public Radio’s Studio One! This year’s festival takes on an Alice in Wonderland theme as the chamber players present timeless repertoire for their season entitled “Through the Looking Glass.” Hunter Capoccioni, the festival’s Artistic Director, gave us an inside view into what the season has in store. The group performed the first movement of Haydn’s Symphony No. 104, the first movement of Beethoven’s Symphony No. 6 “Pastorale”, and more.

John Frantzen

Tune in at 5PM to hear the Quad City Symphony premiere a work written for them by Maquoketa native John Frantzen  - broadcast on the nationally syndicated show, Performance Today with Fred Child. The piece is called "Beyond a Wild Dream," and Frantzen wrote it for the QCSO's 100th anniversary season; music director Mark Russell Smith conducted. Frantzen has won many awards for his music, has been performed at Carnegie Hall and by the Philadelphia Orchestra, and has written a piece you want to hear - tonight!

Jeff Fasano

This week’s Symphonies of Iowa broadcast features the Des Moines Symphony Orchestra’s “Season Finale – All Tchaikovsky” concert. The orchestra performs three monumental works by Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky.

 When Martha Argerich plays piano, says Alex Ross, her “rivals become mere fans” and critics find their “well of superlatives running dry.” She combines qualities "seldom contained in one person":   "brain-teasing technical agility" meets "an unaffected interpreter whose native language is music....

Andrea Joynt

This week’s Symphonies of Iowa broadcast features the Dubuque Symphony Orchestra’s “Symphonic Fantasies” concert. The program showcases works by Iowa composer Amy Dunker, Rachmaninoff, and Berlioz and spotlights Russian piano virtuoso Natasha Paremski.

Rachel Bearinger

 The Cedar Rapids Opera Theatre’s Young Artists stopped by Iowa Public Radio’s Studio One at noon yesterday to present highlights from the CROT’s production of Rodgers and Hammerstein’s award-winning South Pacific. The CROT’s principal cast members soprano Erin Bryan appeared as the Navy nurse, Nellie Forbush; Baritone Kyle Roeder performed as the French Plantation owner, Emile de Beque; Mezzo-Soprano, Jessica Kasinski sang the role of Bloody Mary; and Tenor, Jack Cotterell executed the part of Marine Lieutenant Cable.

Christopher Maharry

The Des Moines Symphony’s Yankee Doodle Pops concert returns to the West Terrace of the Iowa State Capitol again on Friday, July 1st for its 23rd year. Iowa Public Radio Classical will be there broadcasting the concert live, with a pre-show hosted by IPR producers Jacqueline Halbloom and Karen Impola starting at 8:00 p.m. The event features rousing marches, as well as a mix of show tunes and patriotic selections celebrating “The Sound of America.”

Orchestra Iowa

This week’s Symphonies of Iowa broadcast features the Orchestra Iowa Chamber Players’ “Tricksters & Troubadours” concert. The musicians performed three duo compositions by Koetsier, Ginastera, and Vivaldi, as well as chamber works by Milhaud, Wuorinen, and Strauss.

Did the Tonys last night whet your appetite for more Broadway? Tune in at 1PM today when ChamberFest Dubuque comes to IPR Classical's studios to give a preview of this year's concerts - and that includes a "Sound of Broadway" gala tonight in Dubuque. Singer Sarah Ellis, a Tristate native now touring with a Tony-winning show, joins notable pianist Carlos Avila (who will also play Gershwin) and Dubuque native Bridget Pasker (who will play Dvorak on her cello for us).

Rachel Bearinger

Congratulations to Timur Mustakimov, winner of the second Midwest International Piano Competition! After competing this past week with nineteen other pianists in the senior division from ten different countries, Mustakimov is the winner of a $10,000 cash prize and a CD recording with the Blue Griffin label. Timur was also the winner of the new Audience Choice Award, for which he received $500.

Rachel Bearinger

The 2016 Midwest International Piano Competition is nearing its climax as three world-class pianists have been selected to compete in the finals on Saturday night and perform the concerto of their choice with the wcfsymphony under Jason Weinberger. The three finalists hail from China, the United States, and Russia.

Rachel Bearinger

The second Midwest International Piano Competition is in full swing at UNI’s Gallagher-Bluedorn in Cedar Falls! The world-renowned pianists and teachers serving as this year’s judges include Eric Larsen, Craig Sheppard, and Nelita True.

Christina Patramanis

The Cedar Rapids Opera Theatre is invading Iowa Public Radio! Join us at noon on Tuesday, June 14th for your favorite tunes from the CROT’s production of Rodgers and Hammerstein’s South Pacific. The CROT’s principal cast features Erin Bryan as Nellie Forbush, Kyle Roeder as Emile de Beque, Jessica Kasinski as Bloody Mary, and Jack Cotterell as Lt. Cable. The principals and the ensemble will treat us to a few musical gems from their upcoming performances of South Pacific.

This week’s Symphonies of Iowa broadcast features the wcfsymphony’s “Elgar’s Bike” concert. The program includes works by Josef Strauss, Timo Andres, and Edward Elgar.

UNI School of Music

The competitors have arrived and the halls are buzzing -- the 2016 Midwest International Piano Competition has begun! We hope to see you for the preliminary rounds as well as the junior and senior category finals this week. View the full schedule and make a plan to join us! 

The pianists are coming, the pianists are coming!

Cliff Jette

This week’s Symphonies of Iowa broadcast features Orchestra Iowa’s Missa Solemnis concert. Orchestra Iowa will perform Beethoven’s Mass in D, Op. 123 “Missa Solemnis”, performed with the Simpson College Chamber Singers, the Simpson College Choir, the Des Moines Vocal Arts Ensemble, and guest vocal soloists Mary Wilson, Beth Lytwynec, Eric Barry, and Sumner Thompson.

UNI School of Music

In 2014, the inaugural Midwest International Piano Competition brought some of the world’s best young pianists to the Great Hall of UNI’s Gallagher-Bluedorn Performing Arts Center. As a prelude to the 2016 competition, Iowa Public Radio’s Performance Iowa will be airing selections performed by the three 2014 Senior Division finalists on Saturday, June 4 at 6 A.M. and 8 P.M., and again on Sunday, June 5 at 7 P.M.


June and July are overflowing with arts events and anniversary celebrations. This month’s Iowa Arts Showcase features:

·         Salisbury House Executive Director, Kit Curran, and Curator/Historian, Megan Stout Sibbel, detailing upcoming performances of Shakespeare’s King Lear and an art show exhibiting works by 14 local artists

·         The Charles H. MacNider Art Museum’s Associate Curator & Registrar, Mara Linskey-Deegan, and Board of Directors member, Barb MacGregor, outlining the happenings in celebration of the MacNider’s 50th anniversary

This week’s Symphonies of Iowa broadcast features the Quad City Symphony Orchestra’s “Masterworks II: Bach, Brahms, and Shostakovich” concert. The program includes works by Johann Sebastian Bach, Johannes Brahms, and Dmitri Shostakovich, and features violinist Naha Greenholtz and cellist Hannah Holman.

Randy Darst

 How often in 2016 do you read a genuinely civil online disagreement between smart, informed people? Even better, about your own profession? This week, two notable composers,  Kurt Knecht  and Daniel Gilliam, had exactly such an exchange about classical radio. I regard composers as having inside knowledge of music, so I’m relieved to find that most of what they said seems completely right to me.

courtesy photo

This week’s Symphonies of Iowa broadcast features the wcfsymphony’s “Bach II” concert. The program focuses on music by master composer Johann Sebastian Bach.

Listen as the wcfsymphony performs two of Baroque music’s most famous instrumental works: Bach’s sparkling Brandenburg Concerto No. 2 and beloved Suite No. 2. The performance features a beautiful 1970 Tom Pixton harpsichord recently acquired by the ensemble. Tune in on Sunday, May 22 at 4 p.m. and again on Monday, May 23 at 7 p.m. for this Symphonies of Iowa broadcast!

Tatsunori Hashimoto

This week’s Symphonies of Iowa broadcast features the Des Moines Symphony Orchestra’s “The Moldau, Don Juan & Beethoven’s Third Piano Concerto” concert. It includes music composed by Richard Strauss, Ludwig van Beethoven, and Bedřich Smetana and features young pianist extraordinaire Charlie Albright.

Beth Amann

This week’s Symphonies of Iowa broadcast features Orchestra Iowa’s “New Frontiers” concert. It includes music composed by Milhaud, Mozart, and Schumann and features bassoonist Matthew Ransom.

Janette Beckman (copyright Trio Settecento)

Violin superstar Rachel Barton Pine is in the headlines because a pilot refused to let her carry on her Guarneri -but that precious instrument is only the most famous of her fiddles. Rachel is also a master of its Baroque and Renaissance predecessors, and she brought one to Ames for a concert of Italian Baroque music with her Trio Settecento.  You can hear the result on this week's University Concert.

May is flowering with an abundant array of arts events around the state. This month’s Iowa Arts Showcase features:

·         Charles Swanson, Executive Director of Hancher, detailing the launch of their new season and their historic opening gala following the flood of 2008

·         The Des Moines Metro Opera’s General and Artistic Director, Michael Egel, diving into the DMMO’s new summer season operas and the stars that will grace the Blank Performing Arts Center stage in Indianola

This week’s Symphonies of Iowa broadcast features the wcfsymphony’s “Firebird” concert. It includes new music composed by Avner Dorman and Igor Stravinsky’s iconic Firebird suite.


The final broadcast of the 2016 Arias in April series features the Cedar Rapids Opera Theatre’s production of Mozart’s Don Giovanni. It airs on Saturday, April 30 at 8:00 p.m. and Sunday, May 1 at 11:00 p.m.

Jacqueline Halbloom

This week’s Symphonies of Iowa broadcast features the Des Moines Symphony Orchestra’s “Romeo & Juliet and The King of Instruments” concert. It features music composed by Hector Berlioz, Francis Poulenc, and Camille Saint-Saëns.

Courtesy of Simpson College Opera

This week’s Arias in April broadcast features Simpson College Opera’s production of Cavalli’s La Calisto. It will air on Saturday, April 23 at 8:00 p.m. and Sunday, April 24 at 11:00 p.m.