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Robert Schumann's music evokes the image of a child's dreams.

Listen Robert Schumann's Childhood Dreams

June 8, 2010 – The composer's intimate "Träumerei" stakes everything on one moment of epiphany, beautifully set up.


Mourners at a funeral

Listen Barber's 'Adagio': Naked Expression Of Emotion

March 9, 2010 – From sorrow, the music builds to a climax of intensity, and finally reaches serene acceptance.



Listen A World Of Expression In A Tiny Chopin Mazurka APM

March 2, 2010 – Commentator Rob Kapilow explains Chopin's condensed expression in a three-minute Mazurka. APM


Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers

Listen 'Cheek To Cheek': The Melody Lingers On

February 2, 2010 – Hear about the clever craft behind Irving Berlin's song, written for the 1935 film Top Hat.


With just one violin, one piano and two significant notes, Beethoven creates an entire universe within his "Kreutzer" Sonata.

Listen Beethoven's Kreutzer Sonata Connections

October 14, 2009 – With just two notes, Beethoven connects the universe in his "Kreutzer" Sonata for violin and piano.


Czech composer Leos Janacek sent a non-stop stream of more than 700 love letters to a much younger, married woman; she inspired many of his best works.

Listen Janacek's Love Letters, With Strings Attached

September 14, 2009 – Hear the composer create a rich psychological universe out of tiny, power-packed emotional nuggets.


Mozart statue in Vienna

Listen Mozart's Deceptive Simplicity

August 13, 2009 – Mozart's music, like a hologram, flashes back and forth between the simple and the complicated.


Aaron Copland captured the sound of America's wide open spaces with surprisingly simple techniques.

Listen Aaron Copland's American Vision

July 1, 2009 – Copland's pure, American sound flows from two simple chords in Appalachian Spring.


The music Stravinsky wrote for the ballet Petrushka is layered with ideas of the real and the artificial.

Listen 'Petrushka': Stravinsky's Opaque Reality

May 28, 2009 – Commentator Rob Kapilow uncovers the genius beneath the layers of Stravinsky's great ballet.


Composer Steve Reich's Music for Mallet Instruments, Voices and Organ has a percussive motor that never stops.

Listen Steve Reich: Minimalism In The Mainstream

April 20, 2009 – Commentator Rob Kapilow takes the motor-like rhythms of minimalism out for a test drive.



Listen Stephen Sondheim's Clever 'Clowns'

March 11, 2009 – In the Broadway composer's classic "Send in the Clowns," unexpected notes get surprising results.


Winter street

Listen Debussy: A World Revealed In Two Footsteps

February 18, 2009 – Discover the simple beauty and radical sound world of Claude Debussy's "Footsteps in the Snow."


The Octet, which Mendelssohn wrote when he was only 16, continues to inspire with its originality and genius.

Listen Felix Mendelssohn's Genius In 40 Seconds

February 3, 2009 – For the composer's 200th birthday, hear the most remarkable 40 seconds of music by a 16-year-old.


An attention-grabbing opening can be the key to a successful composition.

Listen Bold Beginnings: The Art Of The Opening Notes

January 5, 2009 – Hear Rob Kapilow discuss the ways composers can set a tone in their works' opening seconds.


Simplicity, it turns out, is the secret to the success of Handel's ever-popular "Hallelujah Chorus."

Listen The Pure Power Of Handel's 'Hallelujah Chorus' APM

December 23, 2008 – Hear what makes Handel's famous chorus from Messiah an all-time favorite. APM



The late Hawaiian musician was best-known for his ukulele-backed cover of "Over the Rainbow."

Israel Kamakawiwo'ole: The Voice Of Hawaii

The late Hawaiian musician was best-known for his ukulele-backed cover of "Over the Rainbow."


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