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Program Highlight

Exploring Music meets Musical Prodigies, May 2019

Frederic Chiu, pianist

In the first part of Wunderkinder - Musical Prodigies, we'll meet pianist Frederic Chiu among others.

Week of May 6, 2019 - Wunderkinder - Musical Prodigies, Part I
Blazing talents whose remarkable and sometimes-perilous lives overflowed with natural gifts at a
young age, and audiences couldn’t get enough of them. Starting with compositions by Mozart
and Mendelssohn, all played by today’s whiz kids. We continue with Niccolò Paganini
performed by violinist Julia Fischer, and by violinist Julian Sitkovetsky with his mother, Bella
Davidovich, accompanying him on the piano. Bill ends the week with a full hour devoted to
Frédéric Chopin performed by some of the great prodigy-pianists of today— Maurizio Pollini,
Garrick Ohlsson, and Frederic Chiu. Bill says when these musicians were children they were like
gifts from above.
Week of May 13, 2019 - Wunderkinder - Musical Prodigies, Part II
More performers and composers whose exceptional musical gifts emerged at an early age are our
subject this week. It’s amazing to think that many of these musicians, like Mendelssohn, are still
best known today for works that they composed in their early teens. Conductor Eugene Ormandy
said that all his violinists were prodigies, so we end the week with Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov’s
Flight of the Bumblebee played by the entire first and second violin sections of the Philadelphia
Orchestra. Please enjoy this week of wunderkinder playing the works of wunderkinder.
Week of May 20, 2019 - Dvorák, Tchaikovsky & Borodin String Quartets
Our multiple-part series tracing the evolution of the string quartet continues with magnificent
works from Antonin Dvo?ák, Peter Tchaikovsky, and Alexander Borodin. During the 1870s and
1880s, well into the Romantic period, string quartets were falling by the wayside for a lot of
composers, but a few managed to slip through the fabric of time and tell stories just as wondrous
as the great Romantic tone poems that were popular at the time. Many of these unique quartets
have become calling cards for these three composers.
Week of May 27, 2019 (Memorial Day) - TBA