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Playlist: WFMT Radio Network Holiday Specials 2019

Compiled By: The WFMT Radio Network

 Credit:

The holidays are a magical time of food, family, and most importantly, time off of work! Enjoy this selection of quality holiday programming from the WFMT Radio Network!

The Film Score: Music for the Winter Holidays

From The WFMT Radio Network | 58:30

Phillips returns with The Film Score: Music for the Winter Holidays, an hour-long special devoted to holiday and wintertime movie music. In addition to beloved standards (“White Christmas” from “Holiday Inn” and “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas” from “Meet Me in St. Louis”), Michael shares an eclectic mix of wintry film scores, ranging from “It Happened in Sun Valley” (from “Sun Valley Serenade”) to Alexandre Desplat’s folk-inspired score for “The Grand Budapest Hotel” to Bernard Herrmann’s bracing sleigh ride accompaniment composed for the Orson Welles drama “The Magnificent Ambersons.” Bundle up and enjoy The Film Score: Music for the Winter Holidays!

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The Film Score: Music for the Winter Holidays

In February 2016, Chicago Tribune film critic Michael Phillips introduced The Film Score on WFMT, a series that celebrates great music composed for the movies. From short segments to hour-length programs, The Film Score has explored recent Academy Award-nominated scores, composer-director partnerships, as well as holiday specials dedicated to Memorial Day and Halloween. The series has generated enormous listener response, feedback, and appreciation. 

Phillips returns with The Film Score: Music for the Winter Holidays, an hour-long special devoted to holiday and wintertime movie music. In addition to beloved standards (“White Christmas” from “Holiday Inn” and “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas” from “Meet Me in St. Louis”), Michael shares an eclectic mix of wintry film scores, ranging from “It Happened in Sun Valley” (from “Sun Valley Serenade”) to Alexandre Desplat’s folk-inspired score for “The Grand Budapest Hotel” to Bernard Herrmann’s bracing sleigh ride accompaniment composed for the Orson Welles drama “The Magnificent Ambersons.” Bundle up and enjoy The Film Score: Music for the Winter Holidays!

Michael Phillips is the host of The Film Score, first heard on WFMT-FM (98.7) in 2016. He is the film critic of the Chicago Tribune, and a regular guest on “Filmspotting,” at Filmspotting.net and heard weekly on Chicago Public Radio (91.5 FM). Michael co-hosted 100 episodes of the nationally syndicated TV show “At the Movies,” opposite Richard Roeper and, later, A.O. Scott. More recently, he has introduced and hosted dozens of films for Turner Classic Movies. Prior to the Tribune he has served as a critic and an arts journalist for the Los Angeles Times; the San Diego Union-Tribune; the Dallas Times-Herald; the St. Paul Pioneer Press; and the Twin Cities weekly City Pages. He loves the Bill Evans piano rendition of David Raksin’s theme from “The Bad and the Beautiful” almost as much as he loves his wife, Tribune columnist Heidi Stevens, and their three children.

Dee Alexander: Jazz at Christmastime - Recorded Live at Chicago's Jazz Showcase

From The WFMT Radio Network | 58:30

Coming to you from the WFMT Radio Network - a new one-hour special, Dee Alexander: Jazz at Christmastime – Recorded live at Chicago’s Jazz Showcase! With support from the WFMT Radio Network Jazz Network’s own Dave Schwan and longtime collaborators pianist Vijay Tellis-Nayak, bassist Junius Paul, guitarist John McLean, and drummer Rick Heath, the beloved Chicago vocalist and WFMT Radio Network Jazz Network host Dee Alexander entertains and enchants with songs and reminiscences of holidays past

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Coming to you from the WFMT Radio Network - a new one-hour special, Dee Alexander: Jazz at Christmastime – Recorded live at Chicago’s Jazz Showcase! With support from the WFMT Radio Network Jazz Network’s own Dave Schwan and longtime collaborators pianist Vijay Tellis-Nayak, bassist Junius Paul, guitarist John McLean, and drummer Rick Heath, the beloved Chicago vocalist and WFMT Radio Network Jazz Network host Dee Alexander entertains and enchants with songs and reminiscences of holidays past.

The performance includes holiday favorites “Winter Wonderland”, “Little Drummer Boy”, “I’ll Be Home for Christmas”, alongside gems first recorded by Miriam Makeba and John Lennon. Don’t miss Chicago’s first lady of jazz song serving up the winter holiday season in style.

Dee Alexander is among the premier vocalists and songwriters in American music today, and one of Chicago’s most gifted and respected artists. A member of AACM - the Association for the Advancement of Creative Musicians, Dee has shared a stage with veterans Ahmad Jamal, David Sanborn and Joshua Redman - and has toured France, Finland, Italy, Switzerland, Germany and Poland – while also enjoying a career deeply rooted in Chicago’s vibrant music community.

Winter Holidays Around the World with Bill McGlaughlin

From The WFMT Radio Network | 59:00

Winter holidays are celebrated around the world, and their music is wonderful to hear, regardless of which tradition you observe. Bill’s spirited selection starts in the 12th century with Nova Stella, medieval Italian Christmas music from Saint Francis of Assisi’s staging of the nativity; jazz pianist Dave Brubeck’s classical composition La Fiesta de la Posada, evoking a Mexican Christmas celebration; and Vaughan Williams' Fantasia on Christmas Carols. We will enjoy this time of year in Paris with music from Debussy, and then travel to Polynesia for a traditional hymn, Anau Oia Ea. And then ending with an excerpt from Gian Carlo Menotti’s Amahl and the Night Visitors from the original television production. Turn on your radio, pour a cup of tea, cozy up to a warm fire, and enjoy the music!

Bill_mcglaughlin_03_hires_small Winter holidays are celebrated around the world, and their music is wonderful to hear, regardless of which tradition you observe. Bill’s spirited selection starts in the 12th century with Nova Stella, medieval Italian Christmas music from Saint Francis of Assisi’s staging of the nativity; jazz pianist Dave Brubeck’s classical composition La Fiesta de la Posada, evoking a Mexican Christmas celebration; and Vaughan Williams' Fantasia on Christmas Carols. We will enjoy this time of year in Paris with music from Debussy, and then travel to Polynesia for a traditional hymn, Anau Oia Ea. And then ending with an excerpt from Gian Carlo Menotti’s Amahl and the Night Visitors from the original television production. Turn on your radio, pour a cup of tea, cozy up to a warm fire, and enjoy the music!

A Chanukah Celebration with Chicago a cappella

From The WFMT Radio Network | 58:30

Join Jonathan Miller, artistic director of Chicago a cappella and a longtime champion of Jewish choral music, for an inspiring and informative show featuring choral music set to Chanukah texts. Familiar tunes include "I Have a Little Dreidel" (both in its original Yiddish form and in a neo-funk Hebrew/English setting), a swing version of "S'vivon" by Steve Barnett, and a lively setting of the traditional melody for "Al-Hanissim" ("For the Miracles") by Elliot Levine. Heartfelt original compositions by American and British composers provide added depth of expression to celebrating the holiday. Such works include "Lo Yisa Goy," a plea for peace by Stacy Garrop; Bob Applebaum's stirring new version of "Haneirot Halalu"; and movements from the majestic "Hallel Suite" by London-based Daniel Tunkel. All selections are performed by Chicago a cappella, the virtuoso vocal ensemble now in its 23rd season. Jonathan Miller provides liturgical and cultural background as part of this unique look inside old and newer choral Chanukah traditions.

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This special is available free of charge to all affiliate stations and will be available for two broadcasts from December 1, 2019 through January 5, 2020.

 

A Chanukah Celebration with Chicago a cappella

Join Jonathan Miller, artistic director of Chicago a cappella and a longtime champion of Jewish choral music, for an inspiring and informative show featuring choral music set to Chanukah texts. Familiar tunes include "I Have a Little Dreidel" (both in its original Yiddish form and in a neo-funk Hebrew/English setting), a swing version of "S'vivon" by Steve Barnett, and a lively setting of the traditional melody for "Al-Hanissim" ("For the Miracles") by Elliot Levine. Heartfelt original compositions by American and British composers provide added depth of expression to celebrating the holiday. Such works include "Lo Yisa Goy," a plea for peace by Stacy Garrop; Bob Applebaum's stirring new version of "Haneirot Halalu"; and movements from the majestic "Hallel Suite" by London-based Daniel Tunkel. All selections are performed by Chicago a cappella, the virtuoso vocal ensemble now in its 23rd season. Jonathan Miller provides liturgical and cultural background as part of this unique look inside old and newer choral Chanukah traditions.

This special is perfect for Chanukah, December 22-30, 2019!

 

Chicago a cappella

An ensemble of professional singers founded in 1993 by Jonathan Miller, Chicago a cappella presents an annual Chicago-area subscription series, creates studio recordings as well as live and broadcast-media musical content, produces educational outreach programming, and gives performances on tour and in special engagements. Long recognized for vocal virtuosity and innovative programming, the ensemble enjoys a reputation as a leader in the choral field.

With more than 350 performances to its credit, Chicago a cappella has produced more than 200 concerts on its Chicago-based series. On tour, the group has appeared in 13 American states and in Mexico.  The ensemble has been heard frequently on WFMT radio and through broadcasts distributed by American Public Media, including the nationally-syndicated Performance Today.   The ensemble has produced nine CD recordings of music ranging from Renaissance masses to contemporary works.

From its inception, Chicago a cappella has been a champion of living composers. Since 1993 the group has presented more than 100 works in their world, national, or local premiere. Chicago a cappella has commissioned new music from composers including Joseph Jennings, Chen Yi, Stacy Garrop, Rollo Dilworth, Tania León, and Ezequiel Viñao.

Chicago a cappella is also active in educational and community engagement.  The ensemble produces an annual Youth Choral Festival for young singers from the Chicago area, and leads an innovative High School Internship program, a multi-faceted immersion for selected students in the worlds of performance and arts administration.

 

Jonathan Miller, Host and Chicago a cappella Founder and Artistic Director

Known for innovative programming of choral concerts, Jonathan Miller has guided Chicago a cappella through more than 300 performances and nine commercial CD releases since he founded the ensemble in 1993. He is the recipient of the Louis Botto Award for Innovative Action and Entrepreneurial Zeal from Chorus America. When Jonathan was a teenage bass in the Chicago Children’s Choir, he was bitten hard by the choral bug. He was fortunate to be exposed to a wide range of repertoire by a remarkable group of mentors, including Christopher Moore, Lena McLin, Max Janowski, Howard Mayer Brown, Richard Proulx, John Nygro, and Anne Heider. Eager to learn research tools for choral music, Jonathan earned his doctorate in historical musicology at UNC-Chapel Hill. After returning to the Chicago area, Jonathan led the choir at Unity Temple in Oak Park for nine years and began composing new music for that ensemble. Jonathan has taken a leadership role in Jewish choral music, composing, arranging, narrating programs on stage and on radio, and leading workshops at the North American Jewish Choral Festival and elsewhere. A champion and publisher of the music of the late Max Janowski, Jonathan conducted the culminating concert of the Janowski Centenary at KAM Isaiah Israel Congregation; he also was the recipient of the 2013 Perelmuter Award at KAMII and was Scholar in Residence at Lakeside Congregation in Highland Park, Illinois, in November 2014. Jonathan is honored to serve as high-holiday cantor for Congregation Rodfei Zedek in Hyde Park. He has written more than 75 choral works in a variety of genres and languages; his music has been sung at venues including St. Patrick’s Cathedral in New York City, the Lincoln Memorial, and the Pentagon; his mashup Jingle Bells Hallelujah Chorus is a minor hit; and his series of Wacky Christmas Carols continues to mix words and tunes in new combinations. He also serves as Director of Choral Catalog at Musicnotes.com. Jonathan is married, has an adult daughter and two step-grandsons, and dotes on his English Cocker Spaniels, Higgins and Moseley.

Music of the Baroque: Brass and Choral Holiday Concert

From The WFMT Radio Network | :01

The WFMT Radio Network and Music of the Baroque wants to wish you and yours a joyous holiday season as we offer the Brass and Choral Holiday Concert for your listening pleasure. Hosted by celebrated WFMT host Candice Agree, tune in to the great works of composers like Samuel Scheidt, Giovanni Gabrieli, William Billings, Claudio Monteverdi, and many more.

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The WFMT Radio Network and Music of the Baroque wants to wish you and yours a joyous holiday season as we offer the Brass and Choral Holiday Concert for your listening pleasure. Hosted by celebrated WFMT host Candice Agree, tune in to the great works of composers like Samuel Scheidt, Giovanni Gabrieli, William Billings, Claudio Monteverdi, and many more.

Music makes the holidays come alive, and through the centuries this special time of year inspired composers to new creative heights. Drawn from diverse cultures and various points in history, conductor William Jon Gray has assembled a program highlighting multifarious holiday traditions around a single unifying principle: whether in the twelfth or nineteenth centuries, in Germany, Italy, Mexico, Russia, the Netherlands, or Spain, music gives voice to the spirit of the season.

The first half of the program draws together Giovanni Gabrieli’s sparkling “stereophonic” music for brass ensemble and ethereal choral music written for performance in the soaring churches of sixteenth- and seventeenth-century Europe. Christmas music for Russian czars and the straightforward harmonies of North American music, including William Billings’s Shiloh and the Revivalist hymn “I shall be satisfied” illustrate dramatically the wealth of musical styles employed in the celebration of the holiday.

While the Christmas theme continues in the second half of the program, the repertoire becomes even more diverse. Lively instrumental dances by Tylman Susato contrast with “Adoramus te, Christe,” a sacred madrigal written by opera “inventor” Claudio Monteverdi, and Polish composer Mikolaj Zieleński’s Vidimus stella euis in Oriente. The joy of the holiday season shines through in the infectious rhythms of the medieval villancico Riu, riu chiu and A siolo flasiquiyo by the sixteenth-century Mexican composer Padilla. The program concludes on a more traditional note with Praetorius’s “Lo, how a rose e’er blooming,” leaving listeners with the beautiful image of a delicate flower flourishing in the snow.

Music of the Baroque is comprised of a chorus and orchestra of approximately 60 professional musicians who individually perform around the nation and worldwide and come together in Chicago as a collective. We would love to share their exquisite music with you and your listeners this holiday season.