Biscuits & Bach is a four-hour program hosted by Rachel Stewart and featuring music from the Renaissance to the Baroque and beyond. Rachel welcomes the occasional guest and shares a recipe or two. It's food for the soul and soul food on a Sunday morning.
August 21, 2016 Scimone, I Solisti Veneti This week we hear an album of Concertos from early 18th century Neapolitan composers who specialized in opera and sacred music, but also wrote excellent instrumental music. Including a Cello Concerto by the foremost singing teacher of the day, Nicolo Porpora. And Rachel talks with food writer Belinda Ellis about her book, Biscuits, a Savor the South cookbook from UNC Press. Listen to see if she shares her secrets to making a good biscuit.
August 14, 2016 Viva Italia Listen Now This week we enjoy tracks from a recording made in North Carolina at Duke University Chapel on April 18, 2015. The Duke Vespers Ensemble team up with the Mallarmé Chamber Players of Durham, NC and the Washinton Cornett and Sackbut Ensemble of Washington, DC to perform Renaissance and Baroque music from Rome. The album is called Viva Italia – Sacred Music in 17th Century Rome and features music by composers like Marc-Antoine Charpentier, Tomás Luis de Victoria and Giacomo Carissimi. The album also includes the premiere recording of the “Mass for the Feast of Mary Magdalene” written in 1675 by Giovanni Felice Sances. Also on the program – a conversation with world renowned pianist Stephen Hough who shares his most and least favorite breakfast foods.
August 7, 2016 Wilhelm Friedemann Bach: Sonatas & Trios J.S. Bach’s eldest son, Wilhelm Friedemann, was an excellent organist and composer, and is even considered by many to have displayed his own genius at times. But he never achieved the success of his younger brothers Emmanuel (C.P.E) and Johann Christian. He had difficulty finding a lucrative post which led to many financial problems throughout his lifetime, and he died in poverty. Despite this, his music has survived and found admirers over the centuries. This week we listen to several of his early sonatas and trios as recorded by Camerata Cologne on their 2006 recording on the CPO label.
July 31, 2016 The Six Partitas Johann Sebastian Bach’s Partitas, BWV 825-830, were published between 1726 and 1730, and were the first of his works to be published under his direction. They were among the last of his keyboard suites to be composed, and are by far the most technically demanding. Massachusetts based, Russian born American pianist, Sergey Schepkin, is a leading authority on the interpretation of Bach’s work. This week we’ll listen to his brand new release on the Steinway and Sons label called “Bach: The Six Partitas.”
The English royal courts of the 16th, 17th and 18th centuries were active music centers and attracted the best composers who created some of England's finest music. The likes of John Dowland, Henry Purcell and George Frideric Handel all received royal patronage. And one king, Henry VIII, even contributed his own compositions to court festivities.This week we explore this regal music with brass arrangements played by the Fine Arts Brass Ensemble on their album Music from the English Courts.
July 17, 2016 A Tale of Two Seasons Vivaldi’s concertos are so popular in modern times that we often forget he was a major player in the opera world of his day. This week we’ll compare and contrast early and later operatic compositions by listening to tracks from the album Vivaldi: A Tale of Two Seasons. We’ll hear works from 1717 and 1733. Listen and see if you notice innovations in Vivaldi’s compositional style. And Rachel will talk with Amanda Fisher and Paul Bright of EDIA Maps, the creators of The Great NC BBQ Map, a beautiful and handy resource for those who seek out North Carolina’s favorite food.
July 10, 2016 Testament Listen Now This week we listen to tracks from Rachel Barton Pine's new double album, Testament, featuring Bach’s sonatas and partitas for solo violin. We’ll also chat with Pine about why these works are important, why she chose to record them now and how she is raising her young daughter while maintaining her busy schedule on the road.
July 3, 2016 Reconstructions & Transcriptions for Strings
Furor Musicus, an ensemble from the Netherlands, revels in the discoveries unearthed by this research and focuses on the "what if's" where Bach is concerned. On their recording, "J.S. Bach: Reconstructions and Transcriptions, for Strings," they explore pieces that either were or might have been originally written for strings. We'll hear selections from their album this week.
June 26, 2016 Bach Violin Concertos
The Academy for Ancient Music, Berlin began in 1982 in East Berlin. Since their founding, they’ve become recognized as one of the world’s leading chamber orchestras, and they are unusual for the fact that their artistic leadership is provided by several concertmasters rather than one conductor. Their 2005 album of Bach violin concertos garnered considerable praise when it came out, and we’ll listen to several tracks this week. Concertmasters Midori Seiler and Stephan Mai are in the spotlight as soloist and conductor respectively.
June 19, 2016 Pahud/Pinnock: Bach Flute Sonatas The metal flute was a relatively new and popular instrument in Bach’s day. His son, CPE Bach, worked for Frederick the Great of Prussia who was a gifted amateur flutist which may have had some influence on JS Bach’s decision to write several sonatas for the instrument. This week we’ll hear several of these works when we feature the 2008 recording, Bach: Complete Flute Sonatas, with flutist Emmanuel Pahud of the Berlin Philharmonic and harpsichordist Trevor Pinnock.
June 5, 2016 Gallén: Lute Works Spanish guitarist Ricardo Gallén first performed Bach's lute suites in concert in 2006. Four years later he captured his vision of these works and other Bach lute compositions in a recording made in St. John Chrysostom Church in Newmarket, Canada. We'll sample his performances this week when we listen to tracks from his album, Bach: Complete Lute Works.