Arts & Culture

Arts and culture

Living in the woods as a hermit seems like a fictional tale, but this week's feature describes a true story from the wilderness of Maine. Chris Knight, a hermit living alone for 27 years, was finally exposed after breaking into nearby homes to steal food. Journalist Michael Finkel found him after his arrest, and crafted a biography of Knight's extraordinary life. West Lafayette Public Library Director Nick Schenkel has a review.

Angela Morris

Conductor, pianist, composer, and pedagogue Robert Spano is known worldwide for his artistry and his distinctive communicative abilities. Spano, who leads the Atlanta Symphony, creates “a sense of inclusion and warmth among musicians and audiences that is unique among American orchestras.” As Music Director of the Aspen Music Festival and School, he oversees the programming of more than 300 events and educational programs (the 2017 season starts June 29th). WBAA’s John Clare spoke to Robert about his compositions on an ASO Media new release.

Matt Dilyard

Tuesday, June 27th marks the 70th birthday for composer/teacher/trumpeter Jack Gallagher. Jack's music has been performed around the world, featured on stages and in broadcasts. His most recent release is piano music with Frank Huang. Host John Clare spoke with Gallagher about his birthday, returning to genres, and juggling composition with teaching.

Though usually thought of as rustic and unsuitable for 21st century life, log houses in the US and Europe have been long embraced by esteemed architects as works of art. Accompanied by Radek Kurzaj's beautiful photos, author Richard Olsen takes readers through the history of some of the most spectacular designs in the log cabin world. West Lafayette Public Library Director Nick Schenkel has a review.

The newest release from Jorge Frederico Osorio is sumptuous music by Franz Schubert and Johannes Brahms. On Osorio's first Schubert recording, Final Thoughts, he performs the composer's final two Piano Sonatas, D. 959 and D. 960, hailed as "epic in scale and brimming with melodic invention." Jorge's Cedille Records albums of Mexican and Spanish music have "introduced the pianist to new audiences worldwide, but Osorio can now heard in more of the core German repertoire that has been central to his concert life for decades." WBAA Music Director John Clare spoke with Osorio about Final Thoughts.

This week's feature explores the concept of mercy, and how it can be incorporated in our lives. Starting by showing mercy to ourselves, we can transform the way we interact and relate to one another. Though a book for and about Christians, author Anne Lamott draws on wisdom from a wide variety of spiritual and intellectual figures to show mercy as an integral piece of the human experience. West Lafayette Public Library Director Nick Schenkel has a review.

With a bee population that continues to decline of late, the fruits and vegetables grown to feed the world may be in jeopardy. The Xerces Society works to encourage the general public to reincorporate bees into their lives, and have released a guide to plants that can attract them. With a lengthy index and detailed information about each plant, gardeners all over the country can find things to grow that are native to their region. West Lafayette Public Library Director Nick Schenkel has a review.

Elizabeth Delage

Look no further for this year's song of the summer, it's Elinor Frey's latest release, Complete Cello Sonatas by Angelo Fiorè. An ideal combination of relaxation, inspiration, and discovery, Frey combines this unknown Italian cellist and composer with her colleagues for nonstop listening pleasure. Recorded here for the first time are nine of his cello works: three Sonatas, two Sinfonias, and four Trattenimenti. WBAA's John Clare spoke to Elinor about the Passacaille Records offering.

John Clare

Tippecanoe Music Teachers Association (TMTA) provides many educational and performance opportunities for area piano students through events such as the Sunday Showcase Recitals, Achievement in Music Festival, and Indiana Music Teacher's Association District Auditions as well as continuing education opportunities for members. The 2017 Monster Concert, a grand piano extravaganza, is Thursday, June 8 at 7:00pm at Long Center for the Performing Arts.  It features piano ensemble music, performed on ten pianos by over 175 pianists, grade 3 to adult, playing in groups of up to 20 at a time. WBAA's John Clare spoke to TMTA member and teacher Nadya Dubikovsky about the group.

Renowned author Michael Chabon explores the life of his terminally-ill grandfather in this week's feature. Through his adventurous tales, ranging from love and marriage to space shuttles, Chabon's grandfather toes the line between extraordinary and fantasy. Leaving readers wondering what is real and what is not, Moonglow paints a deathbed confession in a whimsical light. West Lafayette Public Library Director Nick Schenkel has a review.