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 289 | Seattle WA

From Seattle, Washington, this week's program features a teenage violinist local to the "Emerald City" delivering an emotional performance of the music of Ernest Bloch ... teenagers from Chicago perform a thrilling wild and fun work for sax quartet ... and we'll enjoy the broadcast premiere of a new composition written by an 18-year-old from New York City—an intriguing and ethereal piece titled "Tropholingua," which means "language of plants."

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1:02:18
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Show 288 | Tacoma WA

From Tacoma, Washington, this episode features Prokofiev's Toccata performed with a level of energy that can only be described as diabolically teenage (the performer is a totally brilliant, risk-taking 15-year-old), we'll hear a young violinist perform a lush and lyrical piece written for her by her father, and we'll enjoy music from a film by the great Japanese animator Hiyao Miyazaki sumptuously arranged for four cellos by one of the young performers on the program.

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1:02:03
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Show 286 | Cincinatti OH

From Corbett Auditorium in Cincinnati, Ohio, this week's program features one of the strongest pre-collegiate music programs in the country: The Cincinnati Starling Project. Host Christopher O'Riley joins Starling's flagship orchestra to play Mozart; we'll hear a 12-year-old violinist and one of the program's most talented young soloists perform the music of Edward Elgar; and three From the Top alumni return to share their stories of mega success on YouTube and to perform a wonderfully schmaltzy comedic violin trio.

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1:05:15
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Show 287 | Miami Beach

From Miami Beach, Florida, this week's From the Top features an expressive 13-year-old violinist performing one of Pablo de Sarasate's Spanish Dances, a From the Top alumnus who has gone on to become Principal Flute for Miami Beach's New World Symphony, and a brilliant teenage soprano from Florida who is carrying on the tradition of opera for her family—her mother had a fantastic career performing at New York's Metropolitan Opera and beyond.

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1:07:44
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Show 300 | Boston MA

From our home in Boston, Massachusetts, this week's episode features an 11-year-old who is not only a precocious violinist, but who also happens to be a budding meteorologist—his long-term forecasts on YouTube are impressively accurate. A young cellist performs the gorgeous Andante movement from Rachmaninoff's Sonata in G minor, and we'll meet a pianist who, at the age of 14, has recorded all of the Opus 25 Chopin piano études.

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1:03:56
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Show 299 | Montclair NJ

From Montclair, New Jersey, this week's From the Top features the world-renowned Shanghai String Quartet making a special guest appearance. Two lucky teenage performers get the privilege of joining the quartet in a thrilling performance of the music of Johannes Brahms. We'll also listen to the music a young cellist has chosen to populate his playlists on Spotify—playlists cleverly designed to persuade his high school friends to become fans of classical music.

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1:04:38
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Show 306 | South Bend IN

From the Top comes to you from the premier competition for teenage chamber music in the country this week—The Fischoff National Chamber Music Competition at the University of Notre Dame in South Bend, Indiana. We hear all the adrenaline-filled performances and Christopher O'Riley interviews the young musicians who have made it to the finals as they compete for the gold medal at this amazing gathering.

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1:08:24
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Show 298 | Greenville SC

From Greenville, South Carolina, this week's episode features one of the strongest youth choirs in the "Palmetto State" performing a moving new work by a local South Carolina composer. We'll also meet a euphonium player who performs with the speed and dexterity of a flutist, and we'll enjoy Bach performed by the 13-year-old winner of the Tureck International Bach Competition.

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1:03:32
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Show 305 | Coral Gables FL

From the University of Miami in Coral Gables, Florida, this week's From the Top features a remarkably bold and confident performance by a 14-year-old violinist from South Florida, a young soprano from New Orleans performing a musical setting of one of Emily Dickinson's poems, and an oboist who, in addition to possessing an enormous library of classical music, is a wonderful teenage spokesperson for the genre.

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1:05:34
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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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