Tom Huizenga http://apr.org en The Great War At 100: Music Of Conflict And Remembrance http://apr.org/post/great-war-100-music-conflict-and-remembrance One hundred years ago today, the Austro-Hungarian Empire declared war on Serbia. The conflict drew in country after country and grew to an unprecedented scale. An estimated 9 million combatants lost their lives and more than 21 million were wounded in what came to be known as The Great War and, eventually, World War I.<p>Among the dead and the survivors were musicians. We've been listening to some of their creations. The extraordinary level of destruction inspired them in myriad ways. Mon, 28 Jul 2014 12:44:38 +0000 Tom Huizenga 56606 at http://apr.org The Great War At 100: Music Of Conflict And Remembrance 'La Marseillaise' Unmasked: A Bastille Day Puzzler http://apr.org/post/la-marseillaise-unmasked-bastille-day-puzzler "The Star Spangled Banner" turns 200 this year, and the <a href="http://www.npr.org/blogs/deceptivecadence/2014/06/13/321696397/join-a-nationwide-performance-of-the-national-anthem" target="_blank">attention it's been getting</a> is again a reminder of how <a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hvQ5hZadFok" target="_blank">difficult it is</a> for many Americans to sing our national anthem.<p>Not so for the French, who have <a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-mW8D0UNyLk" target="_blank">"La Marseillaise,"</a> composed by Claude Joseph de Lisle in 1792 as the French Revolution was in ful Thu, 17 Jul 2014 13:51:39 +0000 Tom Huizenga 55947 at http://apr.org 'La Marseillaise' Unmasked: A Bastille Day Puzzler The Composer As Sphinx: A Richard Strauss Puzzler http://apr.org/post/composer-sphinx-richard-strauss-puzzler Music by <a href="http://www.npr.org/artists/15870129/richard-strauss" target="_blank">Richard Strauss </a>is heard in symphony halls and opera houses across the world. He needs little help to boost his considerable fame. Yet 150 years after his birth, the German composer remains an enigma to some classical music fans and a polarizing figure for others. Fri, 13 Jun 2014 13:54:07 +0000 Tom Huizenga 53837 at http://apr.org The Composer As Sphinx: A Richard Strauss Puzzler The Concerto: A 400-Year-Old Recipe That Still Cooks http://apr.org/post/concerto-400-year-old-recipe-still-cooks The concerto. It's a musical recipe more than 400 years old but composers still cook with it. And why shouldn't they? We still seem to crave the sound of a virtuosic soloist playing with (and often against) an orchestra. As in centuries past, virtuosos still inspire, and in many cases commission, composers to write some of their best music, which can push an instrument to its creative limit. Fri, 13 Jun 2014 13:52:36 +0000 Tom Huizenga 53835 at http://apr.org The Concerto: A 400-Year-Old Recipe That Still Cooks Simone Dinnerstein: Tiny Desk Concert http://apr.org/post/simone-dinnerstein-tiny-desk-concert Almost any pianist, from a budding beginner to a pro like <a href="http://www.npr.org/artists/17022250/simone-dinnerstein" target="_blank">Simone Dinnerstein</a>, will tell you that one of the basic techniques of keyboard playing is also the toughest to master: making your hands to do separate things simultaneously.<p>The great <a href="http://www.npr.org/artists/15031897/johann-sebastian-bach" target="_blank">Johann Sebastian Bach</a> knew this to be true. That's the primary reason he composed his Two-Part Inventions. Thu, 05 Jun 2014 16:19:07 +0000 Tom Huizenga 53314 at http://apr.org Simone Dinnerstein: Tiny Desk Concert The Silence And Awe Of Arvo Pärt http://apr.org/post/silence-and-awe-arvo-p-rt <a href="http://www.npr.org/artists/16070552/arvo-part" target="_blank">Arvo Pärt</a> is one of the few living composers to find popularity beyond the borders of classical music. <a href="http://www.npr.org/artists/15155026/r-e-m" target="_blank">R.E.M.</a>'s Michael Stipe and <a href="http://www.npr.org/artists/15191158/bjork" target="_blank">Bjork</a> are <a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0BVACGWgN4U" target="_blank">big fans</a>. Mon, 02 Jun 2014 11:23:13 +0000 Tom Huizenga 53088 at http://apr.org The Silence And Awe Of Arvo Pärt Asleep In Dress Blues: Music For Memorial Day http://apr.org/post/asleep-dress-blues-music-memorial-day <p>http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yCSMCgqlc-0</p><p>http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QnlgRQdfONs</p><p>http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n21PsFsL_Gw</p><p>http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aJb1_EGnapY</p><p>http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WChTqYlDjtI</p> Mon, 26 May 2014 15:48:39 +0000 Tom Huizenga 52684 at http://apr.org Asleep In Dress Blues: Music For Memorial Day Anonymous 4: Breaking Up Is Hard To Do (But They're Doing It) http://apr.org/post/anonymous-4-breaking-hard-do-theyre-doing-it In 1986, four women gathered in a casual setting to sing through a bit of medieval chant. Little did they know they were launching <a href="http://www.npr.org/artists/15182954/anonymous-4" target="_blank">Anonymous 4</a>, an a cappella ensemble that has spanned nearly 30 years, 20 albums, countless concerts and more than a millenium of music.<p>Today the group announced that the 2015-16 season will be its last together. But this isn't the first time Anonymous 4 has thought about calling it quits. Wed, 14 May 2014 14:00:13 +0000 Tom Huizenga 51918 at http://apr.org Anonymous 4: Breaking Up Is Hard To Do (But They're Doing It) Pet Sounds: The NPR Music Critter Quiz http://apr.org/post/pet-sounds-npr-music-critter-quiz From as far back as we can tell, music makers have been inspired by the flora and especially the fauna around us. From tooting tunes on actual <a href="http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2009/06/090624-bone-flute-oldest-instrument.html">animal horns and bones</a>, to musical portraits of creatures <a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VZAGLJtj5RU">large</a> and <a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tQhEtF29O3I">small</a>, performers and composers of all stripes have included critters in their creations. In this puzzler, you must identify the creature depicted in the music. Thu, 24 Apr 2014 16:03:56 +0000 Tom Huizenga 50761 at http://apr.org Pet Sounds: The NPR Music Critter Quiz Angst And Excellence In Forgotten Soviet Symphonies http://apr.org/post/angst-and-excellence-forgotten-soviet-symphonies Soviet composer Vadim Salmanov is little more than a footnote outside Russia, but his four energetic, skillfully orchestrated symphonies are making a small comeback. Thu, 24 Apr 2014 16:01:51 +0000 Tom Huizenga 50760 at http://apr.org Angst And Excellence In Forgotten Soviet Symphonies New Music Shines at Classical Grammy Awards http://apr.org/post/new-music-shines-classical-grammy-awards <p>http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-aJF5uoU7fI</p> Thu, 30 Jan 2014 18:09:23 +0000 Tom Huizenga 45907 at http://apr.org New Music Shines at Classical Grammy Awards High Notes And Clams: The Best And Worst Of Classical 2013 http://apr.org/post/high-notes-and-clams-best-and-worst-classical-2013 "It was the best of times, it was the worst of times." That could be the annual mantra for the classical music world. It has been predicted to crumble for decades, just as optimists continue to point to positive trends. This year is no different. Despite two ugly black eyes — the death of the New York City Opera and the continuing, bitter stalemate between the Minnesota Orchestra's (locked out) musicians and management — terrific music is being made by marvelous artists. Here we offer a short list of the best and worst of 2013. Thu, 02 Jan 2014 17:37:50 +0000 Tom Huizenga 44261 at http://apr.org High Notes And Clams: The Best And Worst Of Classical 2013 Bach Unwigged: The Man Behind The Music http://apr.org/post/bach-unwigged-man-behind-music <a href="http://www.npr.org/artists/15031897/johann-sebastian-bach" target="_blank">Johann Sebastian Bach</a> has been a central figure in the life of British conductor <a href="http://www.npr.org/artists/15327825/john-eliot-gardiner" target="_blank">John Eliot Gardiner</a> since he was a youngster. On his way to bed, he couldn't help glancing up at the famous 18th-century portrait of Bach that hung in the first floor landing of the old mill house in Dorset, England where Gardiner was born. Thu, 31 Oct 2013 13:52:22 +0000 Tom Huizenga 40724 at http://apr.org Bach Unwigged: The Man Behind The Music Singing And Sandwiches For A Tenor's Centennial http://apr.org/post/singing-and-sandwiches-tenors-centennial <p>http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Dt9Dc_Xpv2Y</p><p>http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EFZmWdyRjSc</p> Wed, 28 Aug 2013 13:28:32 +0000 Tom Huizenga 36827 at http://apr.org Singing And Sandwiches For A Tenor's Centennial Daniel Hope's Earth And Sky Expedition http://apr.org/post/daniel-hopes-earth-and-sky-expedition When <a href="http://www.npr.org/artists/93594684/daniel-hope" target="_blank">Daniel Hope</a> was a boy, the only thing he loved as much as his violin was his telescope. Gazing into the night sky, he pondered the vastness of space. Wed, 21 Aug 2013 13:47:14 +0000 Tom Huizenga 36411 at http://apr.org Daniel Hope's Earth And Sky Expedition