A recently-formed orchestra performs in Cooperstown

The Fenimore Chamber Orchestra is a recently-formed ensemble performing a concert of Festive Strings on December 3 in Christ Church, Cooperstown We hear from Thomas Wolf about the series of happy accidents that led to the formation of the orchestra, and connecting with conductor Maciej Zoltowski.  

Photo credit: Fenimore Chamber Orchestra

The Neave Trio performs for the Friends of Music of Stamford

The Neave Trio returns to Upstate New York with a program of music by Germaine Tailleferre, Lili Boulanger, Cecile Chaminade, and Ethyl Smythe for the Stamford Friends of Music.  Cellist Misha Veselov talks about the program and tells the heart-warming story of how the ensemble chose its name.  

Photo credit: Jacob Lewis Lovendahl via Neave Trio

Musical aspects of “Heaven and Earth” at St. Patrick’s Church

The Southern Tier Singers’ Collective presents Heaven and Earth, a concert of music inspired by texts expressing deep spirituality. We chat with Artistic Director William Culverhouse about the program, which consists of works by Kathleen Allan, Jocelyn Chambers, Sir William Harris, Dale Trombore, and by the conductor himself.  

Photo credit: Southern Tier Singers’ Collective

Music of Brahms and Dvorak, plus vocal fireworks by Mozart

The Binghamton Community Orchestra presents a concert of music by Mozart, Brahms, and Dvorak.  We hear from music director Evan Meccarello about the program, and then from soprano soloist Kearstin Piper Brown, who spoke with us from the theatre where she was preparing for a world premiere of a new opera.  

Photo credit: Roshina Franklin

Three staged readings of musicals in repertory at The Cherry Arts

Walking on Water Productions is presenting three musicals over the course of three weekends.  Artistic Director Priscilla Hummel (and her daughter) join us from The Cherry Arts, while the set is busy with their work.  We find out about the complications of staging three musicals at one time, how audiences can see the three shows and, incidentally, what it’s like to be a working parent.  

Photo credit: Walking on Water productions

The Glimmerglass Film Days calendar is full of events

Glimmerglass Film Days celebrates its tenth anniversary with a roster packed with events.  We hear from curator Peggy Parsons about spending most of the previous year organizing this major event and what audiences can expect to experience. Here is a link to the schedule: https://www.glimmerglassfilmdays.org/films

 

Photo credit: Glimmerglass Film Days

The BPO plays music for “Green Places”

The Binghamton Philharmonic  Orchestra presents a concert entitled “Green Places”. The title comes from one of the pieces on the program, a work for flute and strings by flutist Gary Schocker.  Music Director Daniel Hege joins us to talk about the program, which features two soloists from the orchestra, Karen Bogardus and Uli Speth.  

Photo credit: Alice G. Patterson

A versatile tenor presents a program of show tunes

Tenor Tony Villecco is known for his skills performing early music, but musical theatre is close to his heart as well.  He joins us to talk about his cabaret show “Some Enchanted Evening”, to be presented in two performances at the Cider Mill Stage with pianist John Isenberg.  

Photo credit: Tony Villecco

Flute, percussion, and electronic music highlight the next concert from the Orchestra of the Southern Finger Lakes

Flutist Jeanne Sperber teams up with percussionist and electronic music composer Simon Bjarning for Thunder and Wind, the next concert in the OSFL’s Musicians’ Choice series.  Jeanne joins us to talk about the wealth of music that is available for flute and electronics.  They also welcome double bassist Claire Russel, runner-up in the 2022 Hertzog Competition.  

Photo credit: OSFL

STAR and the Binghamton Philharmonic collaborate in recreating a classic Twilight Zone episode

A classic episode of  Rod Serling’s The Twilight Zone is presented with the original music by Bernard Herrmann and the roles performed by Southern Tier Actors Read.  We hear from Paul Ciennewa, Executive Director of the Binghamton Philharmonic Orchestra, and Michael McGehee, an authority on the music of Bernard Herrmann, who will be leading the orchestra in the score.  

Photo credit: Binghamton Philharmonic

A suspenseful story of the spirit world

The Tri-Cities Opera presents Gian Carlo Menotti’s The Medium, a psychological thriller about a scam artist who falls victim to her own trickery…or does she?  That performance is preceded by an operatic haunted house.  We hear from General Director John Rozzoni and Stage Director Jennifer Williams, but they don’t give away any of the surprises.  

Photo credit: Tri-Cities Opera

Two Young Artists from Performance Today perform in Stamford

Violist Jordan Bak and pianist Ji Yung Lee have been Young Artists on Performance Today. They are performing for the Friends of Music of Stamford, NY on October 16.  We hear from Jordan about how he happened on playing the viola by chance, and his collaboration with Ji Yung Lee, who was originally a choral conductor.  

Photo credit: Dario Acosta via Jordan Bak

The Orchestra of the Southern Finger Lakes plays music by Beethoven, Mozart, and Beach

We hear from Music Director and Conductor Toshiyuki Shimada about the upcoming concert by the Orchestra of the Southern Finger Lakes, which will present music by Ludwig van Beethoven, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, and Amy Beach. There will also be a pre-concert talk two days earlier about supporting suicide prevention, and how that relates to Beethoven’s life.  

Photo credit: Orchestra of the Southern Finger Lakes

“Daydreams and Duets” at the Firehouse Stage

The Schorr Family Firehouse Stage of the Goodwill Theatre in Johnson City presents “Daydreams and Duets”, featuring Naima Kradjian and Stephen Dell’Aversano, along with pianist Jon Weber. Stephen joins us to talk about how this show, like many others, was first planned before the shutdown due to the COVID pandemic, and how Stephen had thought he had retired from performing.  

Photo credit: Schorr Family Firehouse Stage

After a long wait, Rachael Sage visits Atomic Tom’s in Binghamton

Just before COVID hit, Rachael Sage was scheduled to perform at Atomic Tom’s on State Street in Binghamton. She is finally arriving with new songs that she wrote during the shutdown. She joins us to talk about how she used that time to pursue new projects, and tells the story of how, at the age of twelve, she started recording and mixing her own music.  

Photo credit: Rachael Sage

The audience talks back as a cult musical comes to Owego

As a stage show, it wasn’t supposed to run very long.  The movie version was not supposed to be a success. Nearly half a century later The Rocky Horror Show is a frequently revived cult classic.  We hear from director Ryan Canavan and actor Scot Saggiomo about the history of the show and the performances by the Ti-Ahwaga Community Players  and what audiences, both long-time fans and newbies can expect. The musical contains adult themes and situations and discretion is advised.  

Photo credit: Ti-Ahwaga Community Players

A tale of two bridges

Downtown Binghamton will be packed with people enjoying ten hours of music as the city sponsors Blues on the Bridge.  Music Coordinator Don Wilkins joins us to talk about the twenty year anniversary, and the logistics of gathering 14 bands for the celebration.  

Photo credit: Blues on the Bridge

Music on the lawn at Hyde Hall

Historic Hyde Hall in Glimmerglass State Park hosts a concert by folk duo Robin and Linda Williams on August 20 at 6:30pm on the South Lawn.  We hear from Robin Williams about Linda and his long career, their travels, and how they used the COVID shutdown as an opportunity to write and record more music.  

Photo credit:  Hyde Hall

Music for violin and guitar in Stamford

If you are regular listener to Performance Today, you are probably familiar with violinist Danbi Um and guitarist Jiji.  They are performing together for the Friends of Music of Stamford, NY. We hear about how they started playing together and how they rehearse while living on opposite coasts.  

Photo credit: Friends of Music of Stamford, NY

A legend of the Jazz Age in her own words — and songs

Ada “Bricktop” Smith may not be a familiar name today, but during the Jazz Age she seemed to know everyone, was always in the right place at the right time, and made things happen.  We hear from Gabrielle Lee, who portrays Bricktop in a one-woman show with the Franklin Stage Company. Director Rodney Hudson is also with us to tell about Bricktop’s international career.  

Photo credit: Franklin Stage Company

An artist who wore his heart — and his politics — on his sleeve

The Munson Williams Proctor Arts Institute presents an exhibit of work by beloved artist Norman Rockwell.  We hear from curator Stephen Harrison about these illustrations that remain forever fresh and exciting, and we hear some surprising facts about this well-known figure, whose sense of humor and humanity remain undimmed by time.  

Photo credit: Munson Williams Proctor Arts Institute: New Kids in the Neighborhood, 1967, Norman Rockwell (American, 1894–1978), Norman Rockwell Museum Collection. Licensed by Norman Rockwell Family Agency. 

A former turkey farm now hosts a wide-ranging music series

The Old Carter Barn, located between Montrose and Tunkhannock fills the summer with music. We hear from Douglas Carter Beane, who inherited a dilapidated turkey farm, and Lewis Flinn, who turned it first into a wedding venue, and now, as part of the North Branch Art Trail, into a summer music festival featuring a wide range of music

 

Photo credit: Old Carter Barn

“What Fun Music!” comes back to the Forum

The WFM Festival Orchestra offers a concert of light classics, film music, and a “pick the conductor” contest.  Music Director Daniel Fabricius and orchestra member David Ripic join us to talk about the concert, and about a detective story about tracking down parts of a long-lost piece that Timothy Perry stitched back together for the first performance in nearly a century. For more information, search for the WFM Festival Orchestra on facebook.com

 

Photo credit: WFM Festival Orchestra

The Cayuga Chamber Orchestra premieres a new work

The Cayuga Chamber Orchestra honors the memory of Percy Browning by premiering a new work commissioned in her honor. We hear from the composer of that work, Seth Grosshandler, about his composition process.  We also meet the soloist, clarinetist Michael Wayne, about the work he performs, the Clarinet Concerto by Carl Nielsen, and why such a major work for clarinet is played so rarely. If you would like to hear some of Mr. Grosshandler’s music, here is a link to the Violin Sonata he mentions, played by Christina Bouey.  

Photo credit: Cayuga Chamber Orchestra

Glassfest is back in Corning

Glassfest returns to the Gaffer District of Corning. Executive Director Coleen Fabrizi joins us to give us a hint of the many events taking place during the three days of the festival.  

Photo credit: Glassfest and Alexandra Elise Photography

Music for Trombone Ensemble

The Trombone Quartet of the Orchestra of the Southern Finger Lakes is presenting a concert at North Presbyterian Church.  Trombonist Norm Wilcox joins us to talk about the program, and about the history of music specifically for Trombone Ensemble, dating back to the Eastman School of Music.  

Photo credit: Orchestra of the Southern Finger Lakes

The Euclid Quartet adds an extra cello for a special work by Schubert

The Friends of Music of Stamford, NY welcome the Euclid String Quartet this weekend.  We heard from violinist Jameson Cooper about the two works on the program, Claude Debussy’s one and only string quartet, and a string quintet by Franz Schubert.  The extra member for the quintet is cellist Adrian Daurov.  Mr. Cooper also tells us how the quartet got its name.  

Photo credit:  Stamford Friends of Music

A celebration of French composer Cesar Franck

Organist Mark Laubach is celebrating the  bicentennial of French composer Cesar Franck by performing the complete works for organ.  Sponsored by the Binghamton AGO, the Wilkes-Barre musician performs a selection of those in Binghamton at United Presbyterian Church on Friday, April 22.  He joins us to talk about Franck’s legacy, and deep influence on the generations of organist who followed him.  

Photo credit: Mark Laubach

Two choral concerts on the same day will include a world premiere

The Southern Tier Singers’ Collective presents the premiere of a Mass by composer Zanaida Robles. STSC Artistic Director William Culverhouse talks about commissioning this work for the STSC performance on Sunday, April 24 in St. Patrick’s Church, and the weekend residency of Dr. Robles at Binghamton University featuring performances by the University choral ensembles. You can hear some of Dr. Robles’ music here.  

Photo credit: Southern Tier Singers’ Collective

The story of Cinderella updated to the 1950s in a collaborative production

Tri-Cities Opera is presenting Gioachino Rossini’s setting of the tale of Cinderella in a joint production with Syracuse Opera.  It’s a different version of the tale, with a stepfather instead of a stepmother, a wise tutor instead of a fairy godmother, and matching bracelets instead of a glass slipper — but lots of laughs.  We hear from executive director John Rozzoni, Camille Sherman who plays Cinderella, and Aaron Crouch who plays the Prince.  

Photo credit: Tri-Cities Opera

A rarely-performed work of sacred American music is sung by the Madrigal Choir

Leo Sowerby was a major composer of sacred music.  The Madrigal Choir of Binghamton joins with the choir of Trinity Memorial Episcopal Church for a performance of his cantata “Forsaken of Man’. We hear from the accompanist, Bill Trafka, who has wanted to perform it for a long time, and learn about Sowerby and this rarely-performed masterpiece.  

Photo credit: Madrigal Choir of Binghamton

The Cayuga Vocal Ensemble goes on the road

The Cayuga Vocal Ensemble presents “The Spirit Sings” in two performances, one in Ithaca and another in Seneca Falls.  Artistic Director Sean Linfors joins us to talk about the themes of the concert,  the long break the ensemble had during the shut-down, and the excitement accompanying the premiere of a new work.  

Photo credit: Cayuga Vocal Ensemble

STAR performs an off-beat play by George Bernard Shaw

Forget Pygmalion, Caesar and Cleopatra, Heartbreak House, or The Devil’s Disciple.  George Bernard Shaw’s Too True to Be Good is an absurdist romp through history with a microbe who makes a patient sick, and she returns the favor by making the microbe sick.  Director Chris Nickerson and actor Bill Gorman join us a guides through this quirky comedy.  

Photo credit: Southern Tier Actors Read

Young string players perform in Delhi

The Little Delaware Youth Ensemble and Preparatory Orchestra return to performing live with a concert on Sunday, March 13 in the United Ministry Church of Delhi. Music Director joins us to talk about the concert by the older orchestra, with pieces performed by the Preparatory Orchestra led by Deborah Devine. To hear some performances, click here.  

Photo credit:  Little Delaware Youth Ensemble

A new opera in Ithaca is both a love story and a clash between cultures and values

Opera Ithaca is presenting the premiere of a new opera, We Wear the Sea Like a Coat.  We hear from the composer, Sally Lamb McCune, and Artistic Director, Ben Robinson. They tell us about the gestation of the opera which began with a chance meeting in the Orkney Islands and grew into a poetic, but dramatic story.  

Photo credit: Opera Ithaca

The OSFL celebrates musical diversity and music in our schools

The Orchestra of the Southern Finger Lakes is presenting “Musica Diversa”. We hear from Music Director Toshiyuki Shimada about this wide-ranging concert featuring music by Florence Price, Arturo Marquez, Bright Sheng, Sergei Rachmaninoff, and William Grant Still. The pianist in the Rachmaninoff is Christopher Tillen.  

Photo credit: Orchestra of the Southern Finger Lakes

A musical journey from darkness to light onstage at Binghamton University

The Binghamton University Music Department is presenting Mozart’s comic opera The Magic Flute in two performances with two casts.  Stage Director David Toulson joins us to talk about this story of a prince and princess on a path to enlightenment, with a lot of laughs along the way. The opera will also be live-streamed on Friday night and Sunday afternoon. 

Photo credit: Binghamton University Music Department

Music for clarinet from south of the equator

Clarinetist Timothy Perry joins us to talk about a special program of music, mostly from south of the equator, that he and pianist Pej Reitz have been exploring over the past few years. The concert, Musica Australis, is Friday, February 18 at 7:30 in the Casadesus Recital Hall on the Binghamton University campus.  

Photo credit: Photo by Iain Cridland on Unsplash and Binghamton University Music Department

Rachael Sage joins Howard Jones at the Hangar Theatre

DSP Shows is presenting the Howard Jones Trio with guest artist singer/songwriter Rachael Sage in the Hangar Theatre in Ithaca. Rachael Sage joins us to talk about her many albums, as well as her many collaboration with other musicians.  She also talks about her Poetica project and the different aspects of writing poetry versus writing songs.  

Photo credit: Rachael Sage

A woman’s complicated relationship with her doctor is the basis for a new play

Novelist Carson McKenna presents her first play. It is about an agoraphobic young woman dealing with her isolation.   She and director Missy Harris talk about the play and the cast, which includes a doctor playing a doctor, and a lawyer playing a lawyer. For more information: carsonmckenna88@gmail.com

 

Photo credit: Yellow Robin Photography

The OSFL presents holiday favorites, an aerial violinist, and new music

The Orchestra of the Southern Finger Lakes presents a concert of traditional music for Christmas and Hanukkah, as well as new music by composer Polina Nazaykinskaya.  We hear from the composer, and from Music Director Toshiyuki Shimada. The concert also features aerial violinist Janice Martin.  

Photo credit: OSFL

An annual tradition is back

The Madrigal Choir of Binghamton returns to its annual tradition of Lessons and Carols for Christmas.  Artistic Director Bruce Borton joins us to talk about the wide variety of music presented in this free concert at Trinity Memorial Episcopal Church in Binghamton. Photo credit: Madrigal Choir of Binghamton

500 years of fashion created from paper

“Isabelle de Borchgrave: Fashioning Art from Paper” is an exhibit on display through January 9, 2022 in the Munson Williams Proctor Arts Institute Museum. Deputy Director and Chief Curator Stephen Harrison joins us to describe these historically accurate fashions, fabricated from paper.  

Photo credit: Munson Williams Proctor Arts Institute

The Southern Tier Singers’ Collective performs music from a rare manuscript

Two years ago Binghamton University acquired a famous manuscript of music from the Convent of La Crocetta in Florence, Italy.  Associate Professor of Musicology Paul Schleuse tells the story of its journey from its origin in 1543 to Binghamton University.  Then the Southern Tier Singers’ Collective, prepared by William Culverhouse, performs a selection of excerpts from the manuscript.

Music from the 16th century is heard once more

The Southern Tier Singers’ Collective presents excerpts from a 16th century manuscript created for the Convent of La Crocetta in Florence. Paul Schleuse describes its creation and its mysterious journey from Italy to South America, and the exciting story of how it was acquired by Binghamton University, then conductor William Culverhouse continues the story with how it got from the page to the singers.  

Photo credit: Binghamton University and the Southern Tier Singers’ Collective

A Busy Actor Brings Her Storytelling Stand-up Comedy to the Firehouse Stage

You’ve heard her on Snap Judgment or possibly seen her on shows like Dead to Me, American Horror Story, The Middle, or Curb Your Enthusiasm.  Jen Kober brings her hilarious award-winning stories to the Firehouse Stage on Saturday, October 23. She talks about growing up in Louisiana entertaining her mother, her friends and eventually, audiences.  

Photo credit: Firehouse Stage

A Tour-de-force for Violin with the Cayuga Chamber Orchestra

Cayuga Chamber Orchestra concertmaster Christina Bouey is the soloist in this weekend’s concert at Ford Hall on the Ithaca College campus.  She speaks with us about her deep love for Samuel Barber’s Violin Concerto, and the story behind the composition of the concerto.  The overture to the comic opera The Bartered Bride by Bedřich Smetana and Ludwig van Beethoven’s Symphony No.5 are also on the program.  

Photo credit: Cayuga Chamber Orchestra

Celebrating Beethoven

After a year of not singing, the Madrigal Choir of Binghamton presents a concert intended for last year’s proposed Beethoven festival.  Music Director Bruce Borton speaks to us about some of Beethoven’s smaller and lesser know works they will be performing.  

Photo credit: Madrigal Choir of Binghamton

Hallowe’en Comes Early to the Broome County Forum

The Binghamton Theatre Organ Society welcomes theatre organist Jason Comet to supply music for the 1920 German silent horror film The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari.  Jason tells us how he assembles a score to accompany a silent film, and how this ground-breaking film became a classic.  

Photo credit: Binghamton Theatre Organ Society

The BPO Opens its Season with Two Familiar Works and an Exciting New Piece

The Binghamton Philharmonic Orchestra returns to the Broome County Forum after a long hiatus with “Emerge”, a program featuring Haydn’s last symphony, Mendelssohn’s famous violin concerto with young violinist Julian Rhee, and a recent work, “Pizzicato” by composer Vivian Fung. Music Director Daniel Hege joins us, along with the composer of “Pizzicato”. We hear how Maestro Hege discovered “Pizzicato” and immediately knew that he had to program it, and we hear about the work of this busy young composer.  

Photo credit: Binghamton Philharmonic Orchestra

It’s Time for Laughs at the Cider Mill Stage

Terrence McNally’s backstage comedy “It’s Only a Play” is performed at Cider Mill Stage. We hear from Kate Murray and Rob Egan of the production company BLAST about their new theatrical venture and this irreverent comedy about opening night jitters that opens the BLAST season.  

Photo credit: BLAST Presents

Tri-Cities Opera Hosts the U.S. Army Field Band for the Performance of a New Opera

“The Falling and the Rising” is a new opera formed from interviews with many soldiers. It is being performed at the Broome County Forum.  Tri-Cities Opera General Director John Rozzoni and tenor SFC Ben Hilgert talk about the genesis of the opera and the many veterans services that will be available at the performance.  

Photo credit: Tri-Cities Opera

 

 

Three Concerts in One Weekend

The First Presbyterian Church of Gilbertsville, NY again hosts the annual Labor Day weekend concerts by the Millenium Strings, musicians from the Magic Mountain Music Farm. We hear from the founder, Burton Kaplan, violinist Marvin Suson, and hard-working pianist Cullan Bryant.  

Photo credit:  Magic Mountain Music Farm

Fun Music at the Forum for Labor Day

The WFM Festival Orchestra presents a Labor Day weekend concert. Conductor Daniel Fabricius and orchestra member David Ripic join us to talk about the program, how this orchestra differs from most large ensembles, and some music of historical importance played for the first time in this century. And we finally find out what “WFM” stands for.  

Photo credit: WFMFO

Two Interrelated Art Exhibits in Utica

The Munson-Williams-Proctor Art Institute Museum is presenting two complementary art exhibits. One is a traveling exhibit of work by African-American artist Emma Amos and the other is work from the permanent collection reflecting on Amos’ work.  Curator Mary Murray talks about these interrelated exhibits.  

Photo credit: Munson-Williams-Proctor Art Institute

Two Styles of Playing the Violin

The Town of Binghamton Historical Society is presenting a workshop led by violinist/fiddler Ed Pettengill on “How to Play Old Tyme Fiddle”. Ed joins us to demonstrate the difference between the two styles, and to talk about how classical violin playing and fiddle can help each other.  All violinists are welcome.  Students should be able to play at least NYSSMA grade 3 music.  For reservations, call (607) 669-4151.  

Photo credit: Ed Pettengill

A Famous Play Receives a Sequel

Franklin Stage Company presents Lucas Hnath’s “A Doll’s House, Part 2”. We hear from Leslie Noble, who plays Nora, about the play and what happened after the famous closing of the door. She also talks about the joys of performing in front of a live audience after a long break.  

Photo credit: Russ Rowland via Franklin Stage Company

Hamilton-Gibson Productions Stage a Comedy with an Unusual Premise

A woman’s impatience with a fellow diner at a restaurant leads her down a rabbit hole into his life.  Sarah Ruhl’s comedy Dead Man’s Cell Phone comes to Wellsboro from long-time theatre company Hamilton-Gibson Productions.  We hear from the director, the actor portraying the main character, and the actor playing the titular “dead man.”  

Photo credit: Hamilton-Gibson Productions

The Geneva Music Festival is Back!

The Geneva Music Festival is returning with a series of live and online concerts with a large range of musical genres.  We hear from the artistic director, and also one of the performers, Geoffrey Herd.  

Photo credit: Geneva Music Festival

Know Theatre Works Around COVID Restrictions to Present a Play

We are all using technology in new ways during this pandemic. Know Theatre is presenting Robert Patrick’s “One Person: A Monologue”. Tim Gleason joins us to talk about this ingenious play about two people, the technology involved, and the fascinating life story of the author.  

Photo credit: Know Theatre