Review: Lexington Philharmonic performance on national radio program Tuesday

The Lexington Philharmonic Orchestra will have its debut on the popular classical music radio program “Performance Today” Tuesday.

The broadcast, which can be heard locally at 5 p.m. on WKYL-102.1 FM and 8 p.m. on WEKU-88.9 FM, will feature the Philharmonic’s April 2014 world premiere performance of Adam Schoenberg’s “Canto.” If you don't want to wait until then, it is online now, with the Philharmonic portion starting around the 6:20 mark. The work was part of the Philharmonic’s ongoing Saykaly Garbulinska Composer-in-Residence program, a partnership with the Chamber Music Festival of Lexington in which both groups commission new pieces from a single composer in a year’s time.

“Canto” drew its inspiration from the birth of Schoenberg’s first child, Luca, whose name means “bringer of light.”

“This really is an abstract, atmospheric, textural work,” Schoenberg said in a Herald-Leader interview at the time. “It’s the slowest piece of music I have ever written.”

“Performance Today” is a staple of public radio classical music programming, airing on 300 stations across the nation and being heard by 1.4 million listeners a week, according to the show’s website. It airs live concert performances from around the world, shares music news and features popular segments such as the Piano Puzzler where pianist Bruce Adolphe plays a popular song in the style of a classical composer, and a listener has to guess the song and the composer.

In a news release about the program, the Philharmonic said “Canto” would be the second piece in the first hour of the program. In that release, music director Scott Terrell, who conducted the “Canto” premiere, said, “this is a prestigious honor for our organization, and a testament to our advocacy of living composers.”

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