John Rutter

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John Rutter was born in London in 1945 and received his first musical education as a chorister at Highgate School. He went on to study music at Clare College, Cambridge, where he wrote his first published compositions and conducted his first recording while still a student. His compositional career spans both large and small-scale choral works, orchestral and instrumental pieces, a piano concerto, two children’s operas, music for television, and works for such groups as the Philip Jones Brass Ensemble and the King’s Singers.

From 1975 to 1979 he was Director of Music at Clare College, whose choir he directed in a number of broadcasts and recordings. After giving up the Clare post to allow more time for composition, he formed the Cambridge Singers as a professional chamber choir primarily dedicated to recording, and he now divides his time between composition and conducting.

John Rutter’s orchestra music will be featured on this week’s An English Pastorale, Sunday at 9 am.

Lunchtime Classics: Kentucky Opera Presents Fidelio

Fidelio set

Kentucky Opera opens their 2014-2015 season with Beethoven’s Fidelio, and you can get an up-close preview on Lunchtime Classics, September 3rd at noon. Call (502) 814-6565 to reserve a lunch from City Cafe and a front row seat. Space will fill up quickly!

Until then, check out this cover for an LP set of Fidelio conducted by Zubin Mehta
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Almost-Symphonies

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Johann Christian Bach settled in London in the early 1760′s. Eventually called John Bach, the son of Johann Sebastian dominated the English music scene for the next 20 years. During the 1770′s the Symphonie Concertante was a popular musical form. Not quite a symphony, the form gave prominent roles to 2 or more instruments. Bach’s Sinfonia Concertante in C had solo parts for flute, oboe, violin and cello.

The Sinfonietta by E J Moeran (photo) was commissioned by the BBC in 1944. It was written for a Mozart-sized orchestra. The work was also laid out in a classical form. It became a favorite of conductor Sir Thomas Beecham who gave it several performances. Many consider the Sinfonietta to be Moeran’s masterpiece.

If people know Bruce Montgomery’s music, it’s probably from his work for the “Carry On” films in Great Britain. His Concertino for String Orchestra has echoes of the English tradition of the previous fifty years, but is also tinged with a new modernism. The work was written in 1950.

We’ll hear these works on An English Pastorale Sunday morning at 9.

JC Bach – Symphonie concertante in C Major
E J Moeran – Sinfonietta
Bruce Montgomery – Concertino for String Orchestra

Bourbon Baroque

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Our Lunchtime Classics series returns August 27. Until then we’re featuring some artists who have performed on past episodes.

Bourbon Baroque, a local historically-informed performance (HIP) group, has just announced its new season. Founded in 2007 by harpsichordist John Austin Clark and baroque violinist Nicolas Fortin (photo), Bourbon Baroque: Louisville’s Period Instrument Ensemble specializes in music from the 17th and 18th centuries. Inspired by the art and culture of the House of Bourbon, Bourbon Baroque connects Louisville’s namesake, Louis XVI, through the music of his time. The ensemble often collaborates with other performance groups such as Moving Collective, Kentucky Opera, Louisville Youth Choir, and recently the Squallis Puppeteers.

Lunchtime Classics Returns: LONGLEASH Piano Trio

LONGLEASH

Lunchtime Classics returns next Wednesday (August 27th) with LONGLEASH, a piano trio based in New York. Louisville-native John Popham (LYO alum) is the cellist, along with violinist Pala Garcia and pianist Renata Rohlfing. Details here for reserving a seat and lunch.