Fishko Files Since 1999, Sara Fishko has been producing personal essays on music, art, culture and media. Fishkos pieces provide an insightful and accessible look into culture by mixing colorful sound, intimate interviews and thoughtful commentary. The comprehensive archive examines everything from obscure figures in film history to the masterpieces of the greatest classical composers.
Fishko Files

Fishko Files

From WNYC Radio

Since 1999, Sara Fishko has been producing personal essays on music, art, culture and media. Fishkos pieces provide an insightful and accessible look into culture by mixing colorful sound, intimate interviews and thoughtful commentary. The comprehensive archive examines everything from obscure figures in film history to the masterpieces of the greatest classical composers.More from Fishko Files »

Most Recent Episodes

Monk at Town Hall

This week marks the centenary of the birth of Thelonious Monk. In this archival episode from the Jazz Loft Radio Series, WNYC's Sara Fishko explores the chemistry between Monk and Hall Overton leading up to their legendary 1959 performance at New York's Town Hall. (Produced in 2009) To hear more episodes from the Jazz Loft Radio Series, visit wnyc.org.

West Side Story

This fall marks the 60th anniversary of the opening of West Side Story on Broadway. The show, as Sara Fishko tells us, emerged from the unease of the 1950s, which extended to the cast and creators of this historic hit. (Produced in 2001) Google Arts and Culture has launched a digital collection exploring the legacy and history of West Side Story, featuring archival content, photographs and videos, interviews, and more.

Two Pianists and a Painter

A coincidence of dates and events has Sara Fishko thinking about some memorable artists - whose personal myths and mysteries fought with their work - in this edition of Fishko Files. Robin D.G. Kelley's 2009 book, Thelonious Monk: The Life and Times of an American Original, is out now in an updated paperback edition.

Avakian/Mack the Knife

In September of 1955, Louis Armstrong recorded an unlikely blockbuster song that had originated in the late '20s in Germany. Sara Fishko talks to George Avakian, who tells the story of how "Mack the Knife" became an American hit.

Pianists After Glenn Gould

We're coming up on the 85th birth anniversary of the brilliant Canadian pianist Glenn Gould (1932-1982). It was Gould's strikingly original take on the music of Bach that brought him great acclaim. In this archival piece made for Studio 360, Sara Fishko asked then-current Bach pianists about Gould's influence. (Produced in 2002)

Silence

In honor of the birthday of John Cage (September 5, 1912-August 12, 1992) and because we could always use a little quiet - an episode of Fishko Files on a great interest of Cage's: silence. (Produced in 2003)

Guthrie Archive

Woody Sez, the Irish Repertory Theatre production now in New York through September 10th, is the latest in a long line of biographical and musical treatments of the life and work of Woody Guthrie. Sara Fishko visited Nora Guthrie, his daughter, for this Fishko Files. (Produced for the Guthrie centennial in 2012) For tickets and more information, visit the Irish Repertory Theatre's website.

Moonlight Sonata

With Monday's eclipse still resonating in our memory, here's a Fishko Files meditation on music and moonlight, with thanks to Beethoven and a dozen or so pianists. (Produced in 2000)

Toscanini

It's the 150th birth anniversary of the conductor Arturo Toscanini this year. As WNYC's Sara Fishko tells us in this Fishko Files replay, the celebrated and demanding Maestro dominated classical music for decades. The New York Philharmonic, where Toscanini also conducted, has opened its digital archive of the Toscanini years. It can be found on their website. Fishko Files with Sara Fishko Assistant Producer: Olivia Briley Mix Engineer: Wayne Shulmister Editor: Karen Frillmann

The Chopin Paradox

For the next two weekends, every aspect of the composer Frédéric Chopin will be examined at the annual Bard Music Festival, up the Hudson. It has WNYC's Sara Fishko considering the sources of that composer's inspiration, in this edition of Fishko Files. "Chopin and His World" opens tomorrow at Bard. For more details, visit their website. Jan Lisiecki's Chopin: Works for Piano & Orchestra is available on Amazon. Featured Music: Frédéric Chopin Étude Op. 10, No. 5 in G flat minor Jan Lisiecki, piano Johann Sebastian Bach Capriccio in B flat major, BWV 992 – III: Adagissimo Wilhelm Kempff, piano (1976) Gaetano Donizetti Al Dolce Guidami (from "Anna Bolena") Maria Callas Conducted by Nicola Rescigno Frédéric Chopin Nocturne Op. 15, No. 1 in F major Maria João Pires, piano Vincenzo Bellini Casta Diva (from "Norma") Renée Fleming Conducted by Sir Charles Mackerras Frédéric Chopin Mazurka Op. 33, No. 2 in D major Vladimir Ashkenazy, piano Frédéric Chopin Variations on "Là ci darem la mano" from Mozart's Don Giovanni, Op. 2 – Var. I Jan Lisiecki, piano Frédéric Chopin Étude Op. 10, No. 11 in E flat major Jan Lisiecki, piano Fishko Files with Sara Fishko Assistant Producer: Olivia Briley Mix Engineer: Bill Moss Editor: Karen Frillmann

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