Classically Speaking Nashville's backstage pass to classical music. Host Colleen Phelps interviews composers, conductors, and instrumentalists for an in-depth look at their repertoire and life in the orchestra. Get closer to classical music in Music City.
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Classically Speaking

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Nashville's backstage pass to classical music. Host Colleen Phelps interviews composers, conductors, and instrumentalists for an in-depth look at their repertoire and life in the orchestra. Get closer to classical music in Music City.

Most Recent Episodes

Erin Hall And The Great Comeback

Go behind the scenes of classical music in Nashville. Musician Colleen Phelps takes you backstage at the Schermerhorn Symphony Center for interviews with composers, conductors, and instrumentalists to give you an in-depth look at life in the orchestra. Get closer to the music and musicians behind classical music in Music City.

The Happy Hour Expert, Harpist Kirsten Agresta Copley

One year ago how many of us would have predicted that our spring would be filled with meetings and social calls over video-conference? Even happy hour, the perennial post-work get-together has been transferred, in many cases to Zoom and Google Hangouts. As Classically Speaking continues to document these unprecedented times, it felt like the right moment to consult an expert in happy hours. Harpist Kirsten Agresta Copley is experienced with these situations, and gave her advice for transferring them to the digital world. She, like so many musicians, is looking forward to being with a live audience once again. But she's also been working to translate as much of her work as possible to an online format.

Safe At Home And Making Music

A dispatch from social isolation with musician Matthew Phelps.

Two Horns Take The Stage

While the English horn and the French horn couldn't be much more different as instruments, the Nashville Symphony has given both their time to shine, thanks to the talents of Roger Wiesmeyer and Leslie Norton. Norton answers the audience's most burning questions about the French horn. And Wiesmeyer describes making peace with the oboe and English horn's inherent quirks. Both players do so through the lens of stunning pieces of solo playing from recent seasons.

Jazz In C

Hear something new in this mixtape of performances from Live in Studio C. Classical meets jazz in four very different ways, as local artists bring the crossover. Performances by guitarist Richard Todd, Duo Versal, Avila Joy Strings, and the Tachoir Duo. Music by Frederic Hand, Paulo Olivera, Melanie Alvey, and the Tachoir Duo.

Clara Schumann's 200th Birthday Party, Part 2

To celebrate the bicentennial of one of the most important musicians of the Romantic era, 91Classical held a two-week festival of concerts, broadcasts, and storytelling in her honor. Join Vanderbilt history professor Jim Lovensheimer to learn all about the remarkable life of Clara Schumann in a special two-part episode.

Clara Schumann's 200th Birthday Party, Part 1

To celebrate the bicentennial of one of the most important musicians of the Romantic era, 91Classical held a two-week festival of concerts, broadcasts, and storytelling in her honor. Join Vanderbilt history professor Jim Lovensheimer to learn all about the remarkable life of Clara Schumann in a special two-part episode.

 Stephen Hough And The Seven "Con Fuoco"

On the eve of a performance of Felix Mendelssohn's "Piano Concerto No.1" pianist Stephen Hough finds the fire in the piece – implied by the seven times the composer indicates it should be played "con fuoco" ("with fire"). Hough even describes how the pianist chooses which instrument to play on a givenweekend, anddescribes playing it on Queen Victoria's piano at Royal Albert Hall.

For Rhiannon Giddens, There Is No Other

When Rhiannon Giddens returned to Nashville to accept the Legacy Award from the Americana Association in thefall of 2019she once again spoke with Classically Speaking. This time she gave exclusive insight into her recent album with FrancescoTurrisi"There is no Other," as well as a sneak peek at her upcoming opera about Quran scholar Omar Ibn Said.

Cristina Spinei's Music For Dance

Looped and layered rhythmic lines give Cristina Spinei's music an amazing amount of motion. This is what has put her work in demand with choreographers. For Nashville Public Radio's Podcast Party, Spinei wrote a brand new piece of music, which was choreographed by Nashville Ballet company member Gerald Watson. Hear the full piece, and what drew Cristina to Nashville in the first place. Edited by Anita Bugg. Engineered by Carl Pedersen and Cameron Adkins. Recorded live at Nashville's Children's Theatre. Includes the world premiere of "In Between" by Cristina Spinei, performed by Alicia Enstrom and Sari Reist. Other music includes "Bootleg Sugar Lips" and "Relics" by Cristina Spinei.

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