Voice of the Arts
Meg Cheever, Senior Executive Advisor to the Pittsburgh Parks Conservancy after having served as CEO for many years, is joining the celebration of 25 years for the organization and the creation of a new podcast. Meg discusses a few of the 22 projects in the works and remembers some great successes under her watch including the Gatehouse at Frick Park, the redo of Mellon Square downtown,the Frick Environmental Center, Schenley Park and Plaza, the Westinghouse Park, the creation of a cd with WQED-FM and the Dear Friends Strolling Through the Park, plus the challenge of finding grants, Rad funds, donors, a dedicated tax, and contemplating the need for $400 million to do what needs to be done. Meg Cheever served as Publisher for Pittsburgh Magazine in the WQED family before joining the Conservancy, she has worked on numerous Pittsburgh volunteer boards and played the viola under the baton of the Boston Pops Harry Ellis Dickson.
Chatham Baroque members Patricia Halverson and Scott Pauley stopped by to chat with WQED-FM's Anna Singer about their upcoming season, which will include live audiences for the first time in a year and a half.
Carnegie Mellon University's baroque flutist who also teaches one of CMU's most popular courses on the Beatles, Stephen Schultz has a new cd out with an hour of the Francois Couperin Royal Concerts or Concerts Royaux recorded at the George Lucas Skywalker studios in Marin County, California. Stephen walks us through the four suites of dance music once danced by Louis XIV explaining the special features, the cover art which consists of a lively representation of Marie Antoinette eating a meringue confection. Stephen loves all the dances but especially the musette and notes that Apple music found a hit with the menuet. Flute talk is included with the details of the "wooden sticks" making exqusite sounds and the harpsichord played by Jory Vinokour joined by Alexa Haynes-Pilon and second baroque flute Mindy Rosenfeld.
Cellist Inbal Segev is commissioning and recording 20 chamber music works to capture the year 2020. The recordings are being released in four volumes, and in this conversation with WQED-FM she describes the five works on Volume 1:
1 Fernando Otero - Concerto for Cello and String Orchestra
2 James Lee III - Ekah for cello and piano
3 Timo Andres - Agita for cello and piano
4 Sophia Bass - Taal-Naad Naman for cello, table and tanpura
5 Bruce Wolosoff - Lacrymae for cello choir
WQED-FM's Anna Singer spoke with Pittsburgh Festival Opera Artistic Director Marianne Cornetti about their next "Legends in the Limelight" concert featuring baritone Michael Chioldi. The concert is at Carnegie Music Hall on Tuesday September 14th at 7:30pm.
The Artsmobile is on the move complete with its own ice cream truck style chime and artists from Pittsbugh Opera, Local 412, Libertoca, The Hill Dance Academy, Nandanik Dance Troupe, DJ set HUNY and more. The Greater Pittsburgh Arts Council will roll from downtown Pittsburgh when the lights turn on to the Penn Hills Boys and Girls Club, the Sweetwater Arts Center, follow along with Shakespeare in the Parks and more. The GPAC is helping to restart the arts in the post pandemic era welcoming audiences back to the arts world. Mitch Swain, CEO of GPAC, explains how to find information on the GPAC website and whether the Steelers or the arts bring more people to seats in Western Pa in this conversation with Jim Cunningham.
Pianist and Composer Deanna Witkowski, who appeared just before the pandemic with the Pittsburgh Symphony at Heinz Hall, has just published "Mary Lou Williams: Music For the Soul," a new biography of the jazz legend who still has family in the city, spent a large portion of her life in Pittsburgh and is buried in Calvary Cemetary. There's a book launch and a signing at Con Alma downtown on September 16th with many other book and concert events in the near future now that Deanna has moved to Pittsbugh after 23 years in New York. Check her website for an updated itinerary. Deanna Witkowski's meticulous research on the Williams Pittsburgh years and the spiritual side of Mary Lou is explored in depth from the writer who joined the Catholic Church as an adult. Deanna lets Mary Lou do the ministering to your soul with her new CD recorded on the MCG Jazz label. Deanna's spiritual journey began in Brazil. She recognizes the problems faced by the church, its believers and she is ready to rumble on church controversy while lifting you at the keyboard. Deanna spoke with Jim Cunningham.
Britsburgh 2021 returns September 6-12 2021 with events throughout Pittsburgh. It kicks off with an event on September 6th called "Remembering HRH The Prince Philip In Words, Pictures & Music" at St. Andrew's Episcopal Church from 3-5pm. Organist Jon Tyillian will feature music associated with Prince Philip, including hymns sung at his wedding to Princess Elizabeth, music heard at his funeral and great soul-stirring British favorites, including Pomp and Circumstance. Jon and Britsburgh Board Member Stephen Shandor spoke with WQED-FM's Anna Singer about the September 6th event, as well as other events taking place during the Festival.
WQED-FM talks with playwright and author Charles A. Taormina, who has most recently written historical dramas about U.S. presidents such as Thomas Jefferson, Richard Nixon and Barack Obama. Material from his extensive portfolio is available on his blog: https://charlesataormina.wordpress.com, and in this interview he reads a soliloquy from one of his plays.
The Pittsburgh-based performing arts troupe Squonk is touring to eight U.S. cities with a show called Hand to Hand, featuring progressive rock music, a multi-tiered stage and two giant hands. WQED-FM talks with Squonk's Co-Artistic Directors, Jackie Dempsey and Steve O'Hearn.