Enjoy the holidays with Classical 90.5, with the following specials coming up this year!
Thanksgiving with Cantus – Thanksgiving Day at 9am and 4pm
Cantus is one of the premiere men’s vocal ensembles, and with Alison Young, talk about the holiday, music, and food.
Giving Thanks: A Celebration of Fall, Food, & Gratitude – Thanksgiving Day at 10am and 8pm
We remember Dr. Maya Angelou, and she shares her Thanksgiving blessing and memories. Nikki Giovanni reads food poems from her new book, and recalls the Thanksgiving she got kicked out of college! Garrison Keillor reads “Minnesota Thanksgiving” by John Berryman, and to celebrate another poet with a centenary in 2014, Dylan Thomas reads his poem of praise “Fern Hill.” Also, Simple Gifts from Copland, a Simple Song from Bernstein, and lots of music about fall, food, and gratitude.
Advent Voices – November 30th at 7pm
Advent is a time of quiet contemplation and waiting. It’s waiting for darkness to become light and for hopes to be realized. Throughout the centuries Advent has been observed musically in sacred and secular ways. Join Lynne Warfel for an hour of the most beautiful vocal music inspired by and written for Advent.
Eight Nights of Chanukah – December 16th-24th 4pm
The Jewish holiday of Chanukah – the Festival of Lights – is celebrated over the course of eight nights. In a series of radio vignettes called The Eight Nights of Chanukah, WQXR’s Naomi Lewin tells the stories, and talks about the customs of the holiday, including the Chanukah miracle, lighting the menorah, traditional foods, and why Chanukah is so hard to spell.
Candles Burning Brightly – December 16th 8pm
Join hosts Mindy Ratner and Bill Morelock for a one-hour celebration of Chanukah, the Jewish Festival of Lights. There’s plenty of music from Jewish communities around the world, plus an exploration of holiday traditions, and a special story reading by the incomparable Theodore Bikel
The Canadian Brass: Christmas Time is Here – December 22nd at 9pm
Hosted by WQXR’s Jeff Spurgeon, this program features arrangements of music by Vince Guaraldi and Luther Henderson as well as traditional favorites from “A Charlie Brown Christmas,” “The Grinch Who Stole Christmas,” “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer,” “Frosty the Snowman” and more – timeless classics infused with jazz and lush harmonies. The selections on this program are featured on the quintet’s latest album, “Christmas Time is Here.”
Bourbon Baroque: Handel’s Messiah – December 23rd at 1pm
Bourbon Baroque, together with the Youth Performing Arts School Chamber Choir, perform Marc-Antoine Charpentier’s Messe de minuit pour noël and the Christmas portion of Handel’s Messiah.
Musical Gifts: Joshua Bell and Friends – December 23rd at 9pm
Celebrate the season with superstar violinist Joshua Bell, performing traditional favorites and new holiday arrangements from his new CD, “Musical Gifts: Joshua Bell and Friends” that celebrate the warmth, beauty and magic of the season. Featuring special guests Michael Feinstein, Frankie Moreno, the Young People’s Chorus of New York and more. WQXR’s Elliott Forrest hosts.
Festival of Nine Lessons and Carols – December 24th at 10am and 8pm
Hosted by Michael Barone, this is a live stereo music and spoken-word broadcast from the chapel of King’s College in Cambridge, England. The 30-voice King’s College Choir performs the legendary Festival of Nine Lessons and Carols service of Biblical readings and music. Download the 2014 booklet here.
Holiday Choral Festival 2013 – December 24th at noon
An encore broadcast of the 2013 Holiday Choral Festival, featuring the American Spiritual Ensemble, Louisville Chamber Choir, University of Louisville Cardinal Singers and the Louisville Youth Choir. Download the 2013 booklet here.
A Chanticleer Christmas – December 24th at 2pm
Nothing signals the beginning of the holiday season like 12 men singing in beautifully blended harmony. A Chanticleer Christmas is American Public Media’s one-hour celebration of the season as told through the glorious voices of Chanticleer, the San Francisco-based men’s choir. The program spans the globe and the centuries – from England in the 1300s to new arrangements of classic and contemporary carols to Chanticleer’s popular Gospel medley of Christmas tunes.
An Anonymous 4 Christmas – December 24th at 4pm
For Christmas, the legendary Anonymous 4 sings medieval music from England, France and Spain that praises the Virgin Mary. The devotional songs come from the Codex Las Huelgas, Montpellier Codex, and Cantigas de Santa Maria. Anglo-American ballads such as the Cherry Tree Carol and A Virgin Unspotted add a homespun seasonal touch.
Welcome Christmas! – December 25th at 9am
An hour of joyful holiday music featuring one of the world’s premiere choral groups, led by Philip Brunelle and hosted for the sixteenth year by John Birge. This year, a tribute to the late Dave Brubeck with his classical Christmas cantata “La Fiesta de la Posada”. Plus, this year’s winners of the annual carol contest with the American Composers Forum. Gramophone magazine called VocalEssence “excellent and vibrant.” NEA Chairman Dana Gioia named them “one of the irreplaceable music ensembles of our time.”
Holiday Choral Festival 2014 – December 25th at noon
Recorded at St. Martin of Tours on December 7th, this year’s festival features Louisville Chamber Choir, Protus, Voces Novae, Youth Performing Arts School Ladies’ Ensemble.
St. Olaf Christmas Festival – December 25th at 2pm
A service in song and word that has become one of the nation’s most cherished holiday celebrations. Tickets to the event, which takes place at St. Olaf College in Northfield, MN, are always gone months in advance. The festival includes hymns, carols, choral works, and orchestral selections celebrating the Nativity and featuring more than 500 student musicians who are members of five choirs and the St. Olaf Orchestra.
And Glory Shone Around: An Early-American Christmas with the Rose Ensemble – December 25th at 8pm
The Rose Ensemble, renowned for its expansive repertoire of “music from around the world and across the centuries” presents a unique Christmas special to add warmth and distinction to your holiday lineup. And Glory Shone Around: An Early-American Christmas draws from 19th-century songbooks, featuring carols of the New England colonies, Appalachian folk tunes, Southern shape-note singing, Shaker spiritual songs and the close harmonies that gave birth to bluegrass.
Light and Gold: The Music of Eric Whitacre – December 25th at 10pm
New Year’s Day from Vienna – January 1st at 11am