Voice of the Arts
Here is the Executive Director of the Kelly Strayhorn Theater Joseph Hall describing their Suite Life Celebration of the Billy Strayhorn namesakes Gene Kelly and Billy Strayhorn. The event is November 28th at 7pm at the Theater in East Liberty. David Hajdu, Strayhorn's biographer, Patricia Ward Kelly, wife of Gene Kelly, Lynn Hayes Freeland, Poogie Bell and many others are taking place in the event which benefits the theater.
On November 5, 2020, Dr. Barry Coutinho will present a piano recital at Herberman Conference Center at UPMC Shadyside. The concert is a benefit for Shoulder to Shoulder Pittsburgh, which helps improve health outcomes in San Jose del Negrito, Honduras and the surrounding rural communities by empowering these communities to provide sustainable comprehensive primary health care. The recital will feature Beethoven's Sonata #8 Opus 13 "Pathetique," Chopin's Nocturne Opus 9, No. 2. Mendelssohn's Rondo Capriccioso Opus 14, and Gershwin's "Rhapsody in Blue." WQED-FM's Jim Cunningham spoke with Dr. Coutinho about the recital; his musical background and the latest on the Covid pandemic.
Veteran audio engineer and Senior Technician at WQED Al Lawyer recently turned 85 so the station dedicated its fall fundraiser to him. Al started with WQED in 1966 having previously worked for an AM station in West Virginia and working with audio in the military. He soldered every wire in the months that led to radio sign on in January of 1973. The station moved twice within the building so the wires all had to be done again. Al went on countless remotes including The Three Rivers Piano Competition while working as the sound engineer for at least a season of Mr Roger Neighborhood. In this conversation with Jim Cunningham he discusses how much he admired the work of colleagues Jay Conley, Tom Ammons and Dave Tepe plus managers Jack Sommers and Ceci Sommers. Al felt his TV colleagues were hesitant about working for the classical radio station with no pictures and disliked early automation equipment which sometimes had a mind of its own. Al recalls working at Heinz Hall to record the Pittsburgh Symphony, climbing the catwalk high above the stage as in Phantom of the Opera and listening to several orchestra broadcasts from other cities with principal players of the Pittsburgh to determine the best microphone placement. Cleveland was the model! Al recorded a pledge pitch too which guarantees immortality.
The Covid-19 Pandemic isn't slowing down the Pittsburgh Festival Opera. They are presenting the Wicked Wagner Weekend October 30-November 1st online at the Pittsburgh Festival Opera website. And on Friday November 6th, they'll present the Mildred Miller International Voice Competition online. Marianne Cornetti spoke with WQED-FM's Anna Singer about all of the details.
Janis Burley Wilson, President and CEO of the August Wilson Cultural Center, joins Elizabeth Barker, the Executive Director of the Frick Pittsburgh, to talk about their Radical Days events and update us on what is going on at both cultural centers. Also, Shannon Musgrave, Communications Director of The Allegheny Regional Asset District, runs down happenings in the near future. They discuss with Jim Cunningham the August Wilson Center exhibit "Like the Shapes of Clouds on Water" by Dominic Chambers, Lit Fridays, the Youth Writers Camp, the latest exhibit at the Frick, the Virtual Look Inside the Frick with behind the scenes tours and how both institutions are reacting to the social unrest in the world today.
It's the second year for Piano 4te and their concert will take place this Sunday afternoon at 4pm with pianists Jimmy Liu, Jack Kurutz, Luis Hernandez and Uliana Khochevnikova. Look for piano 4tey in concert on Facebook for the link to the live concert. Jimmy and Uliana stopped by WQED-FM to chat with Anna Singer about the concert.
Professional bass player Miles Davis made the news on WHYY when he got together with his colleagues to sight-read chamber music right outside his front door in downtown Philadelphia. So far they have played pieces such as Barber's Adagio for Strings, a Brahms sextet, and a Schubert octet, following social distancing guidelines. In this interview, Miles talks about how these spontaneous chamber music sessions came to be, his visits to Pittsburgh when he was younger, and how he wound up with the same name as trumpet player Miles Davis.
Tomorrow (Tuesday October 20th), Nanette Kaplan Solomon performs for the Tuesday Musical Club recital series. It will be a virtual concert with music by Bach, Beethoven and Nancy Galbraith. The concert takes place at 1pm and you can see it via Youtube from this link: https://www.tuesdaymusicalclub.org/events/public/article/recital-series/3771/c15/
Legendary civil rights activist Bayard Rustin once proclaimed “We need in every community a group of angelic troublemakers.” What is an angelic troublemaker and what does that quote mean to you regarding human rights? The Pittsburgh Commission on Human Relations is holding a creative arts contest and inviting all youth in ages/grades K-12th who live in or go to school in the City of Pittsburgh to come up with their own answer to that question. WQED-FM's Jim Cunningham spoke with Tracy Baton, Wil Tolliver Jr. and Wesley Speary about the contest.
October 17th through the 29th, Pittsburgh Opera presents Mozart's "Cosi fan tutte" at the George R. White Opera Studio at Pittsburgh Opera headquarters. WQED-FM's Anna Singer spoke with the opera's "Dorabella," Therese Carmack, about the role, performing while singing with masks, and much more.