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Classics Live

Every Thursday at 7 p.m. Classics Live brings you exclusive performances from throughout the KPR listening area. Our microphones travel to the Sunflower Music Festival, the Lied Center, the Ruel Joyce Recital series, the Great Spaces Music and Arts series, as well as performances recorded in Kansas Public Radio's live studio. Performers include the Emerson String Quartet, the Zoco Duo, Ensemble Iberica, and members of the Kansas City Symphony, among others. The series producer is KPR's Cordelia Brown, with recording engineer Chuck Smith. Darrell Brogdon hosts the program.

Latest episode of Classics Live:

Upcoming Performances on Classics Live:

Sunflower Music Festival III — Aug 25 2022
Fanny Mendelssohn, Ina Boyle, Louise Farrenc and, a very moving, almost electric piece for 2 harps and orchestra called The Passion of Angels. A great night of orchestral music from the 2021 Sunflower Music Festival.

The King’s Singers — Sep 1 2022
Celebrating 50 years of of their close harmonies and excellent song choices, not to mention their dry British humor and their heart-felt stories, this British group brought a bouquet of love songs, new and old, to the Lied Center. Join the six young men of The King’s Singers for a romantic night of song.

The Munin Trio — Sep 8 2022
Munin means Memory and this trio always plays everything from memory, so they can concentrate more on listening to each other for better blending and engagement. They’ll engage you too, with piano trio pieces by Schumann, Beethoven and Elliott Carter.

The Opus 76 Quartet — Sep 15 2022
Kansas City’s own Opus 76 String Quartet recently completed a recorded set of Beethoven’s sixteen string quartets. Join us for a sampling of Beethoven’s early, middle and late periods of chamber music, recorded in the Gold Dome Cathedral in downtown KC.

Sunflower Music Festival IV — Sep 22 2022
From a chamber music night in June 2021, Sunflower Music Festival musicians in Topeka play a Nonet for nine soloists by composer Louise Farrenc who was born in Paris in 1804. Plus the rich and thrilling Brahms 2nd String Sextet.

Kathy Berry, Violin — Sep 29 2022
Ruel Joyce Recital favorite, Kansas City violinist Kathy Berry, with pianist Karen Savage. Beginning and ending their show with two sets of sultry tangos, they also present great tunes by Gluck, Massenet, John Williams and Rachmaninoff.

Calmus — Oct 6 2022
The five-voice vocal ensemble Calmus with a warm and personal concert from Topeka’s Grace Cathedral Great Spaces music and arts series. Hailing from Leipzig Germany begins with a 17th century motet and ends with classics by Sting and Freddy Mercury.

The Wires — Oct 13 2022
Kansas City friends Sascha Groschang and Laurel Morgan Parks have a fun alternative classical duo called The Wires. They start off with a nod to the French/Italian jazz violinists Stephane Grapelli and show us some other original compositions they’ve collaborated on.

Sunflower Music Festival V — Oct 20 2022
Buffalo Philharmonic conductor Joann Falletta was the special guest conductor for the 2021 Sunflower Music Festival in Topeka summer before last. Don’t miss this incredible concert where she directs the orchestra in a fiery performance of Beethoven’s Fifth Symphony.

Thomas Rosenkranz — Oct 27 2022
Tom Rosenkranz is a professor of piano at the UMKC Conservatory of Music. His dashing Ruel Joyce Recital begins with his variations on an old American folk hymn, and proceeds through Bach, Beethoven, and even some Radiohead and Tunisian folk music.

Haney/Kemp — Nov 3 2022
A thoughtful program of what this Ruel Joyce Recitalist, soprano Kristee Haney, calls an ‘unknown journey’ through classical music for voice and piano. From song cycles by Mark Carlson, Cecil Price Walden, and two songs by Reynaldo Hahn and Stephen Sondheim.

Bassoons 1,2,3! — Nov 10 2022
Hearing the term ‘Bassoon Trio’ might suggest a bassoon soloist with a cellist and pianist. Not this Ruel Joyce Recital! Recently retired long-time Kansas City bassoonist Kim Farnsworth joined up with fellow bassoonist friends to bring you a true bassoon trio. Everything from a Palestrina madrigal written in 3 parts from the 1500s, to a trio piece written especially for this pleasantly mellow combination of three bassoons.

Sunflower Music Festival VI — Nov 17 2022
Shining some long-neglected light on music by Louise-Marie Simon, Carolyn Shaw and Amy Beach, the Sunflower Music Festival 2021 musicians in Topeka with a concert of string quartets.

The Opus 76 Quartet — Dec 1 2022
This Kansas City quartet chose their name to reflect their reverence for the Opus 76 set of quartets written by Franz Josef Haydn, who’s said to have invented this combination of string players and who certainly popularized it by writing so much for it. Hear them play early Beethoven string quartet music, which is very reflective of the style coined by Haydn.

Sunflower Music Festival VII — Dec 8 2022
The 2021 Year of the Woman Sunflower Music Festival wraps up with a new piece by Libby Larsen called The Supreme Four, honoring the women who have served on the Supreme Court. Narrated by our own Kansas Governor, Laura Kelley. Plus the Beethoven Triple Concerto and Brahms’ 2nd Symphony, conducted by JoAnn Falletta.

The Opus 76 Quartet — Dec 15 2022
Another sampling of Beethoven string quartet music from his early, middle, and late periods with Kansas City’s young and energetic Opus 76 quartet. Led by violinists Keith Stanfield and Zsolt Eder, Beethoven’s last string quartet writings leave on a mysterious note.

Colin MacKnight, Organ (Christmas) — Dec 22 2022
Organist Colin MacKnight gave a meaningful and exciting concert in Topeka’s Grace Cathedral of some of the great music composers of old, who worked for the church, created for Christmastime. Join us for Bach and Handel, of course, but also some new pieces that sparkle as well.

The Brookside Quartet — Jan 5 2023
It's an all Bach and Vivaldi concert on this week's CLASSICS LIVE when we resent Kansas City's long-time ensemble, The Brookside String Quartet. With two preludes by Bach and three Vivaldi concertos, The Brookside also provides a few stories about the composers.

The Manhattan Trio — Jan 12 2023
If you haven’t heard the amazing piano professor from K-State Slavomir Dobrzanski play yet, this is your chance. Joining equally amazing musicians Sunnat Ibragimov and Mandy Wang, they call themselves the Manhattan Trio. They’ll play Ingrid Stolzel’s stunning The Road is All from 2007. Plus piano trios by Haydn and Mendelssohn.

The Pherigos — Jan 19 2023
Robert and Lyra Pherigo of Kansas City can do anything musical, it seems. They both sing and they are both excellent instrumentalists!

Zsolt Eder, violin — Jan 26 2023
This fine Kansas City violinist is usually heard playing with the Opus 76 Quartet. This Great Spaces concert from Grace Cathedral in Topeka will show off what a great soloist he is.

Li and Sommer — Feb 2 2023
Finally, some saxophone! There are great symphonic parts written occasionally for the sax, but join us for this saxophone accompanied by piano recital from the Ruel Joyce Series. The three composers are Ryo Noda, Ingolf Dahl, and Alfred Desenclos with alto saxophonist Lingxiao Li and pianist Ellen Sommer.

1 + 1 — Feb 9 2023
This Great Spaces concert from Topeka’s Grace Cathedral features Sunnat Ibragimov, cellist, with violinist Mandy Wang. After Sunnat opens with a Bach Cello Suite, it’s on to Haydn, Gliere and Beethoven.

The Opus 76 Quartet — Feb 16 2023
Two pieces played by composers dear to the collective heart of Kansas City’s Opus 76 Quartet, Mozart and Beethoven, from a Ruel Joyce Recital.

Marimba by Mark Lowry — Feb 23 2023
How can we resist a Ruel Joyce Recital called Marimba and More? Mark Lowry is featured playing a fun program of Scott Jopin, Bach, Casey Cangelosi, and a Mexican Dance by Gordon Stout.

Avila and Gonzales — Mar 2 2023
With classical guitarist Aleia Gonzalez, and pianist Alejandro Avila, this Ruel Joyce Recital combines music from Paraguay, Argentina and Brazil in a fascinating program called A South American Journey.




  • Thursday 7-8pm

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91.5 FM KANU Lawrence, Topeka, Kansas City
96.1 FM K241AR Lawrence (KPR2)
89.7 FM KANH Emporia
99.5 FM K258BT Manhattan
97.9 FM K250AY Manhattan (KPR2)
91.3 FM  KANV Junction City, Olsburg
89.9 FM K210CR Atchison
90.3 FM KANQ Chanute

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