VPR Classical

VPR Classical is Vermont's statewide classical music station. We bring you the broad world of classical music with a strong local connection: local hosts throughout the week, live performances, news about events in your community, and more.

VPR Classical hosts, clockwise from the top left: Kari Anderson, Walter Parker, James Stewart, Linda Radtke and Peter Fox Smith.

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Waltzes by Johann Strauss II are heard in his operetta A Night in Venice, with soloists, the Bregenz Festival Chorus, and the Vienna Symphony Orchestra conducted by Anton Paulik.

Listen Saturday, October 22 at 12 noon.


Vermont Symphony Orchestra
Anthony Princiotti, conductor
VSO Chorus, Jose Daniel Flores-Caraballo, director; Brenna Wells, soprano; Stefan Reed, tenor; David McFerrin, bass

Schubert: Mass No. 2 in G, D. 167
Dvorak: Symphony No. 8 in G, Op. 88

Listen Wednesday October 19 at 8 p.m.

U.S. Public Domain

French composer, Maurice Ravel was short in stature, slight of frame, impeccably dressed and careful about his manner. He lived a private life, but perhaps you could have found him walking in the woods outside of Paris at night pondering music in his head. “It’s lucky I’ve managed to write music,” Ravel wrote, “because I know perfectly well I should have never been able to do anything else.”

Marco Borggreve / www.andrisnelsons.com

Boston Symphony Orchestra
Andris Nelsons, conductor
Yefim Bronfman, piano; Camilla Tilling, soprano; Thomas Hampson, baritone; Tanglewood Festival Chorus

Jorg Widmann: Trauermarsch (Funeral March)
Brahms: A German Requiem

Listen Sunday October 16 at 1 p.m.

Wiener Blut

Oct 13, 2016

Join us for the beautiful melodies of Johann Strauss II's Wiener Blut, with Elisabeth Schwarzkopf and Nicolai Gedda.

Listen Saturday, October 15 at 12 noon.


Vermont Symphony Orchestra

Anthony Princiotti, conductor
Mozart: Marriage of Figaro Overture
Rimsky-Korsakov: Capriccio Espagnol, Op. 34

Jaime Laredo, conductor
Jonathan Biss, piano
Beethoven: Piano Concerto No. 3 in C minor, Op. 37

Listen Wednesday October 12 at 8 p.m.

U.S. Public Domain

Art influences art. The work of one discipline can inform and inspire the work of another. In France, at the close of the 19th century, a movement known as impressionism left its mark on the world of visual art, literature and music.

Vermont Symphony Orchestra

Vermont Symphony Orchestra
Jaime Laredo, conductor

Schubert: Symphony No. 8 in B minor Unfinished
Schumann: Symphony No. 3 in E-flat, Op. 97 Rhenish

Listen Wednesday October 5 at 8 p.m.

Academy of St. Martin in the Fields

Sir Neville Marriner died Sunday at age 92.  One of the most prolifically recorded conductors in history, he founded the Academy of St. Martin in the Fields in 1958 and led it until 2011, when he was named its Life President.  All this week VPR Classical will feature his recordings.

Here's the New York Times obituary.

U.S. Public Domain

Once in a great while an artist steps on to the scene that challenges the status quo and changes the way we look at art forever. At the dawning of the 20th century, France saw several of these individuals. Stephane Mallarme’s symbolic poetry and Claude Monet’s impressionistic paintings helped pave the way for new expression in their art forms. In the world of music, Claude Debussy stands as that pivotal figure whose works ushered in new sounds and ideas.


The festive final concert of the 2016 BBC Proms Music Festival
BBC Symphony Orchestra, Chorus and Singers
Sakari Oramo, conductor
Juan Diego Florez, tenor

program details

Listen Friday September 30 at 8 p.m.

La voix humaine

Sep 26, 2016

Francis Poulenc's La voix humaine, with libretto by Jean Cocteau, is preceded by two short 20th century opera tidbits: an orchestral excerpt from Der Rosenkavalier conducted by Richard Strauss; and William Mayer's very short A Brief Candle.

Listen Saturday, October 1 at 12 noon.

photo: Kathy Chapman / CM Artists

Vermont Symphony Orchestra

Mozart: Abduction from the Seraglio Overture  (Sarah Hicks, conductor)
Brahms: Piano Concerto No. 1 in D minor, Op. 15  (Peter Serkin, piano; Jaime Laredo, conductor)

Listen Wednesday September 28 at 8 p.m.

U.S. Public Domain

Of all the advancements of the 20th century, the advent of recording technology has affected the world of music like no other. For centuries, classical music was the privilege of the rich and powerful. It was relegated to the church, concert hall, opera house or salon. But today, we can access the masterpieces of any era, anytime, anywhere played by the world’s most talented musicians.

BBC Proms Festival

From the BBC Proms
Staatskapelle Berlin
Daniel Barenboim, piano and conductor

Mozart: Piano Concerto No. 24 in C minor, K. 491
Bruckner: Symphony No. 4 in E-flat Romantic
Britten: Four Sea Interludes from Peter Grimes  (Jiri Belohlavek, conductor)

Listen Friday September 23 at 8 p.m.

Porgy and Bess

Sep 20, 2016

We mark the September 26, 1898 birthday of George Gershwin with excerpts from the most successful of all American operas, Porgy and Bess.

Listen Saturday, September 24 at 12 noon.

Vermont Symphony Orchestra

Vermont Symphony Orchestra
Jaime Laredo, conductor

Wagner: Prelude to Act 1 of Die Meistersinger
Tchaikovsky: Symphony No. 6  Pathetique

Listen Wednesday September 21 at 8 p.m.


U.S. Public Domain

At the dawning of the 20th century the world stood on the edge of immense change. No one could have guessed what the next hundred years would bring. Previous centuries saw most composers following specific aesthetic ideals, but music fractured in the 20th century like never before. In reality, we’re still trying to figure out where music goes from here.

Timeline is a project from VPR Classical, a service of Vermont Public Radio. It is intended to be an informative, entertaining overview of music history. This work will hopefully stir the curious on to study the subject further. Here we have provided a list of suggested reading.  It contains references and suggestions of how to go deeper.

BBC Proms Festival

From the BBC Proms:
BBC Symphony Orchestra
Alexander Vedernikov, conductor
Stephen Hough, piano

Tchaikovsky: Hamlet Fantasy-Overture
Rachmaninoff: Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini
Prokofiev: Symphony No. 3
Sibelius: Symphony No. 2  (Thomas Beecham, conductor)

Listen Friday September 16 at 8 p.m.