Afternoon and Overnight Classics on WVTF Music

Join Classical 24 hosts Steve Seel, Scott Blankenship, Melissa Ousley, Elena See, Mindy Ratner, Bob Christiansen, Andrea Blain, John Zech, Lynne Warfel, Kevin O'Connor, Valerie Kahler for the best in classical music every day and night. 

You can catch WVTF's Classical Programming during these times:

Monday - Thursday:

  • 12 AM - 9 AM 
  • 2 PM  - 8 PM

Friday:  

  • 12 AM - 9 AM 
  • 2 PM  - 7 PM

Saturday:

  • 12 AM - 9 AM 
  • 11 AM - 1 PM 

Sunday:

  • 12 AM - 7 AM
  • 5 PM - 7 PM

When opera star Joyce DiDonato told us she wanted to sing centuries-old Italian love songs at the Tiny Desk we weren't surprised. But when she said she was bringing a jazz band to back her up, we did a double take. But that's Joyce, always taking risks. After all, the last time we filmed the down-to-earth diva, she insisted on singing an opera aria at the Stonewall Inn, the iconic gay tavern in Greenwich Village.

After the ferociously talented harpist Bridget Kibbey unpacked her 47-stringed instrument at our NPR Music offices, she proceeded to crush the stereotype of the genteel harp, plucked by angels. She proved that the instrument can be as tempestuous as a tango, as complex as a Bach fugue and sing as serenely as a church choir.

Kibbey is crazy for the harp. She first heard one at a country church amid the Northwest Ohio cornfields where she grew up. Now she's the go-to harpist for contemporary composers, some of whom who are writing pieces especially for her.

Adrianne Lenker is the guitarist and singer for the Brooklyn, N.Y.-based rock band Big Thief. Cecilia Bartoli is the Italian opera singer who thrives on neglected repertoire from the 18th century. The two women might seem like strange bedfellows, but they come together in our series titled "highly specific superlatives," a kind of drilling down to some of the finest and most precise moments in the arts in 2019.

Every Christmas Eve at exactly 3 p.m., the Chapel of King's College in Cambridge, England plays A Festival of Nine Lessons and Carols. The tradition began in 1918, and for decades it's been broadcast on the BBC and around the world. A commemorative recording of last year's Centenary Service has just been released; it was the last one conducted by Sir Stephen Cleobury, the choir's music director for 37 years, who died just last month on Nov. 22.

At the height of the Cold War in 1958, Van Cliburn, a curly-headed kid from Texas, won the International Tchaikovsky Competition. He was hugged by Nikita Khrushchev and heralded like Elvis Presley when he returned.

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