Support
provided by:
close
 

Classical archive

John Tavener's ethereal music was influenced by the Russian Orthodox traditions.

Watch Remembering 'Holy Minimalist' Composer John Tavener

November 12, 2013 – Britain's John Tavener, whose music was beloved by many far outside classical music, died Tuesday.

ListenPlaylist

Benjamin Britten's War Requiem, written in response to the devastation of both World Wars, premiered in 1962.

Read First Listen: Benjamin Britten's 'War Requiem'

November 10, 2013 – Britten's response to bloodshed remains as vital as it was when his Requiem premiered in 1962.

Pianist Paul Lewis is drawn to the late piano sonatas by Franz Schubert.

Watch Paul Lewis: Confronting Schubert's Nightmare WGBH

November 7, 2013 – The pianist describes this sinister, delusive music as a violent dream merging with reality. WGBH

In 27 Pieces: The Hilary Hahn Encores comes out Nov. 11.

Read First Listen: Hilary Hahn, 'In 27 Pieces: The Hilary Hahn Encores'

November 3, 2013 – The resourceful young violinist asked for brand-new encores — and, boy, did she get them.

Pianist Maria João Pires realized in a shock onstage that she'd been booked to play another piece of music altogether.

Watch And You Think You're Having A Bad Day

October 29, 2013 – What's your worst memory of performance panic? (Imagine showing up with the wrong solo.)

This rare portrait of Bach, by Elias Gottlob Haussmann, hung in John Eliot Gardiner's home during World War II.

Read Bach Unwigged: The Man Behind The Music

October 29, 2013 – In his new book, conductor John Eliot Gardiner hunts for the personality of the great composer.

Kronos Quartet's new album, Aheym, comes out Nov. 5. All the music on this album was composed by Bryce Dessner (center) of the rock group The National.

Read First Listen: Kronos Quartet, 'Aheym'

October 27, 2013 – The National's Bryce Dessner composed all the music for this album.

Chinese composer Tan Dun's latest work, Nu-Shu: The Secret Songs of Women, was inspred by an ancient language spoken in a remote area of Tan's home province of Hunan.

Watch From 'Crouching Tiger' To 'Secret Songs': Composer Tan Dun's Next Move

October 27, 2013 – An ancient secret language spoken among women in his home province inspired Tan's latest work.

ListenPlaylist

Electronic artists such as Mason Bates (pictured above), Aphex Twin and Tiësto have blended classical music into their dance beats.

Read Soothing The Savage Beat: When Electronic Artists Conjure Classical

October 24, 2013 – From pulsating techno to a sublime adagio, what happens when two opposite musical realms collide.

Composer Ned Rorem in 1953 in Paris, where he lived for nearly a decade and wrote his infamous Paris Diary.

Watch Get To Know Ned Rorem, Now That He's 90

October 23, 2013 – Composer and author Ned Rorem turns 90 today. Why isn't there more celebrating?

An Angeleno revels at 10 Times The Party, a celebration of Walt Disney Concert Hall's 10th Anniversary, on Oct. 5 in Los Angeles.

Read LA's Own 'Amazing And Unique Instrument' Turns 10

October 19, 2013 – Conductor Gustavo Dudamel and others give their thoughts on Disney Hall's 10th anniversary.

ListenPlaylist

Cartoon by Pablo Helguera.

Read Superdupertitles At Silicon Valley Opera

October 18, 2013 – Fridays are funnier with a classical cartoon at noon, from Deceptive Cadence.

Miloš Karadaglić.

Listen Miloš Karadaglić On 'Song Travels'

October 18, 2013 – The guitarist plays the music of Heitor Villa-Lobos and Argentine tango master Astor Piazzolla.

ListenPlaylist

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (left), Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (center), and Speaker of the House John Boehner are three key lawmakers in the government shut down and debt ceiling crisis.

Read A Debt Ceiling Playlist: 5 Songs To Push Your Mind To The Brink

October 17, 2013 – With financial cataclysm averted, a playlist for the swirling emotions of the past two weeks.

NPR thanks our sponsors

Become an NPR sponsor