Go behind the scenes of classical music in Nashville. Musician Colleen Phelps takes you backstage for interviews with composers, conductors, and instrumentalists to give you an in-depth look at life in the orchestra, on the stage, and behind an instrument. Get closer to the music and musicians behind classical music in Music City.
Classically Speaking: Titus Underwood And The Oboe In The Easy Bake Oven
For Nashville Symphony Principal Oboist Titus Underwood, the pandemic has been a fairly prolific time. It’s also been a successful year - with a regional Emmy Award and the Sphinx Medal of Excellence, as well as a viral sensation on YouTube. And while he looks forward to a return to the Schermerhorn stage, he also has a lot of goals for the future of orchestral music - including equity in auditions, and a new broader focus in musicians’ training.
Classically Speaking: The 51 Percent
Nashville’s chamber orchestra Intersection has commissioned new works from 25 female-identifying composers for a project titled “Listen.” So, we did just that - assembling a panel of the composing participants. Their diverse life experiences are reflected in their music, and also in the misconceptions they face on a daily basis.
Classically Speaking: Maurice Ravel's Wonderful World of Childhood Tantrums
There's nothing more wild yet utterly predictable than a child's tantrum. But in Maurice Ravel's opera L’enfant et les sortilèges, the consequences take the child completely by surprise. Vanderbilt Opera Theater's production of the piece is Nashville's latest example of how performing arts have pivoted to create new and interesting projects during the COVID-19 pandemic. In this episode of Classically Speaking hear from director Gayle Shay and music director Jennifer McGuire about how Vanderbilt students learned a whole new set of skills to put on this production.
Classically Speaking: Synth Patches, Spy Games, and Songs In Code - Composing ‘Call Of Duty’
The newest “Call of Duty” game hit the market in late 2020. In” Black Ops - Cold War” it’s composer Jack Wall’s job to transport you to the turbulence of the 1980s. From green computer screens to hidden messages in Russian lyrics, Wall’s scores are epic thanks to their use of a full orchestra – recorded right here in Nashville. Hear all about building the game’s story scene by scene.
Classically Speaking: Leila Adu And The Fierce Guardian Of Compassion
While this episode of Classically Speaking was prepared in a tumultuous time, we never could have predicted how many more shocking things would happen before its release. That being said, Leila Adu's Mahakala Oratorio is still the right piece of music for this exact moment. The piece itself is well-timed invocation to a deity whose charge is to protect the good in all of us. Adu describes how meditation informs her music making, how she comes to her minimalism honestly, and how the project of premiering this oratorio took on new life during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Classically Speaking: Love, Magic, And A Mechanical Tree
From the archive:
Perennial holiday favorite The Nutcracker has a special local treatment from Nashville Ballet. This year, as the work makes its local television debut, get behind the scenes with Artistic Director Paul Vasterling.