91Classical | Nashville Public Radio


Mickey Dobo / Nashville Symphony

The Nashville Symphony today announced the lineup for a season of concerts that marks both ten years in the Schermerhorn Symphony Center and the 70th anniversary of the orchestra's founding.

photographer unknown / Wikimedia Commons

In his life, the Englishman Joseph Merrick was destitute and deformed, treated as a sideshow freak and an object of pity. But at the next concert of the Gateway Chamber Orchestra, audiences will be invited to imagine what the world must have looked like from the point of view of the so-called “Elephant Man.”

Composer and Austin Peay State University professor Jeffrey Wood says he’s been intrigued by the story of Joseph Merrick ever since college. That’s when he stumbled across a book about the man whose entire body was affected by ailments that still aren’t fully explained.

Anthonis Mor, 1549 (oil on canvas) / Dukes of Alba Collection, Liria Palace, Madrid

Visitors to Nashville’s Frist Center have a rare opportunity right now: the chance to see works by master artists that are normally displayed where only Europe’s elite can see them.  The paintings, tapestries and books belong to one of Spain’s most storied noble families, the House of Alba.

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The Nashville chamber music collective called ALIAS released its third album this year; the group's winter concert will be a look back at the recordings made so far, featuring selections from each. That show is at 8pm on Wednesday, February 10 in Blair School of Music's Turner Recital Hall.

Wikimedia Commons / Library of Congress

This weekend, the Nashville Symphony is playing movie-related music from composers you may not associate with the cinema: Leonard Bernstein’s soundtrack to On the Waterfront, a suite of tunes from Prokofiev’s score to the Russian film Lietenant Kije, and a violin concerto in which Eric Korngold quotes melodies from his own film score.  

Those three are far from the only “classical” composers to try their hand at writing for the big screen. Here are a few notable crossovers:

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Each year, pupils at Vanderbilt's Blair School of Music compete for slots on the annual Student Showcase. It's one of the highlights of the school's concert calendar, this year giving eleven undergraduate acts a chance to perform solo and chamber music on Blair's largest stage.  Kristin Whittlesey brought a handful of students to Studio C to give us a preview of Friday night's show.


A statue of a boxer by Nashville artist William Edmondson has drawn a record-setting price at auction — $785,000, the highest price ever garnered for what's called "outsider art."

Edmondson did briefly achieve insider status during his lifetime: In 1937, he became the first African-American to have a solo exhibit at the Museum of Modern Art in New York City. 

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Music City Baroque and the Vox Grata women's choir join forces in an upcoming concert of music written for all-female ensembles in early 18th century Venice.

Courtesy of Triple Point

Next week, hundreds of video gamers — many decked out in costumes — will head to a place where they typically don't hang out: the Nashville Symphony.

The occasion? A set of gaming-themed concerts that the symphony is putting on to attract this segment of the audience.

The orchestra and chorus will be performing the score from The Legend of Zelda, an epic, high-fantasy gaming series that’s about to celebrate its 30th anniversary. 

Nina Cardona / Nashville Public Radio

The Blair School of Music continues its Signature Series this Friday with a concert by The Blakemore Trio, a faculty ensemble made up of violinist Carolyn Huebl, cellist Felix Wang and pianist Amy Dorfman. They're playing selections by Beethoven, Schumann, and Dorfman's teacher from her undergraduate days (who died a few months ago), the Chilean composer Alfonso Montecino.