From the Top

From the Top

From NPR

From the Top, hosted by acclaimed concert pianist Christopher O'Riley, showcases the music, stories, and unique humor of America's best young classical musicians.More from From the Top »

Most Recent Episodes

Show 297 | Storrs CT

From the University of Connecticut, this week's From the Top includes an emotional performance of Rachmaninoff's Elegie in E-flat minor performed by a young pianist from southern Connecticut, a twelve-year-old violinist brings to life all of the quixotic mood changes in Prokofiev's Sonata for Violin and Piano, and we'll get a dose of teenage musical philosophy from a philosophical sixteen-year-old cellist.

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1:02:41
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Highlight Show 24

This week's special "Where Are They Now?" episode traces the lives of five different From the Top alums to learn how these young artists are negotiating their lives in their twenties. One alumni guest has just scored the position of Principal Bassoonist for the Chicago Symphony. Another is a lyric soprano working in the opera houses of Germany. One's a touring piano soloist. Each featured alum shares with us a recent musical performance.

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1:06:41
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Show 296 | Washington DC

From Washington, D.C., this week's program includes one of the youngest performers From the Top has ever featured: an 8-year-old Bolivian American pianist. He performs the music of Haydn with a delightfully infectious sense of freedom and joy. Also, an all-female percussion quartet brings us a mesmerizing piece written by a contemporary composer, and the show concludes with the sheer inspiration of a youth gospel choir.

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1:04:38
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Show 295 | Boston MA

From our home in Boston, this week's program features a 13-year-old violinist whose performance of the music of Robert Schumann beautifully conveys the composer's romantic fervor; we also meet an internationally award-winning young pianist; and a teenage boy shares the humorous story of studying and then rejecting about five different instruments before finally discovering his lifelong soulmate: the French horn.

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1:01:46
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Show 294 | Aspen CO

This week's program comes from the Aspen Music Festival and School in Aspen, Colorado, where many of the world's top young musicians come to study during the summer. An outstanding teenage violinist from Shanghai triumphs in his performance of one of the most difficult and virtuosic pieces written for unaccompanied violin, and we'll meet a young flutist with a moving story about being adopted as an 18-year-old into a new family.

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1:04:36
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Show 303 | Interlochen MI

This week's From the Top features students studying at one of America's most famous training programs for young musicians—the Interlochen Arts Academy—in rural Michigan. We meet the winners of the Academy's concerto competition, and the mighty Interlochen Arts Academy Orchestra performs a world premiere inspired by the story of The Three Musketeers.

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SHOW HL-15 | HIGHLIGHT SHOW

This week's it's From the Top's Annual Highlights show featuring some of the best music and stories from our archives ... including a fiery performance of the music of Alberto Ginastera performed by a teenage pianist from Florida ... and a young violist humorously lists the Top 10 Worst Things You Can Say After A Performance.

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Show 302 | Denver CO

From Denver, Colorado, this week's episode features a special guest appearance by one of America's finest living film composers, Danny Elfman. Our young musicians perform arrangements of his music from the soundtracks of "Milk" and "The Nightmare Before Christmas." Mr. Elfman also shares stories from his own colorful teenage years, and a phenomenal 17-year-old from New York performs the music of Lowell Liebermann.

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Show 304 | Wellesley MA

From Wellesley, Massachusetts, this week's From the Top pays tribute to Jewish composers and Jewish music. A precocious 12-year-old violinist performs the music of George Gershwin; a young tenor performs his own composition inspired by the great twentieth century Jewish poet, Hannah Senesh; and the show's finale features the great sound of Klezmer music.

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1:02:57
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Show 292 | Salem MA

This week's program was recorded at The Peabody Essex Museum in Salem, Massachusetts, and given the show's art museum venue, each young performer discusses a connection between the music they're performing and a work of visual art in the museum's collection. We hear an award-winning string quartet from Chicago perform the music of Bartok, and a teenager from Maryland performs an epic piece on the traditional Chinese instrument, the guzheng.

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