Champaign-Urbana composer Peter Michalove died last December after a long bout with cancer. While, as he said himself, he “spent most of a 30-year career doing administrative work” at the University of Illinois, his lifelong love was music. There will be a concert of his music in Champaign on Monday, and we’ll hear a live preview on the Friday edition of “Live and Local.” Also, for the Lunar New Year, I’ll welcome some young Chinese musicians for a little live playing.
Live and Local
Not every classical pianist plays and records music by Radiohead, Elliott Smith, R.E.M. and Pink Floyd. But Christopher O’Riley does, and he’ll bring his eclectic stylings to Springfield Friday night. Cellist Maya Beiser, on the other hand, will strap herself with interactive sensors and play a world premiere to visual and electronic accompaniment in Urbana on Saturday. Mr. O’Riley and Ms. Beiser will each be my guests on the Thursday edition of “Live and Local.”
The Jupiter String Quartet is the quartet in residence at the University of Illinois School of Music, with their four members on the performance faculty. An active touring quartet, they will give their first local performance of 2014 on Thursday, with an interesting program of music by Britten, Schubert and Dan Visconti. The Jupiters will join us for a live in-studio preview on the Wednesday edition of “Live and Local.”
When it rains, it pours, the expression goes, and I guess you could say that it will be raining orchestras in Central Illinois this weekend. The Millikin-Decatur Symphony, Champaign-Urbana Symphony and Illinois Symphony Chamber Orchestra will all give concerts. Stephen Alltop will lead the CU Symphony in music by Mozart, Beethoven and Walter Piston, and Michael Luxner will conduct the MDSO in their annual "Young Artists" concert. I'll speak with both conductors on the Tuesday edition of "Live and Local."
English conductor, harpsichordist and flutist Nicholas McGegan has led the San Francisco-based Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra for twenty-seven years. Known primarily as an early-music period-instrument specialist, he finds himself often on podiums in front of modern-instrument orchestras. Nicholas McGegan will conduct the Illinois Symphony Chamber Orchestra in concerts next weekend, and he’ll be my guest on the Monday edition of “Live and Local.”
The Celebration Company at the Station Theatre in Urbana has a reputation for producing edgy, often-newer plays for small ensemble casts. Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa’s play Good Boys and True is one such, and on the Friday edition of “Live and Local,” we’ll welcome actors and the director to give us a live preview. Also, live in our studio, we’ll hear roots-rock singer-songwriter Erisa Rei, who will perform in Rochester Saturday night.
Wayne “The Train” Hancock has been called “a rare breed of traditionalist” in country music, one was “takes what was once old and makes it seem like it’s always been and always will be.” Born, raised and still living in Texas, he has said, “All I want is to play the joints ‘til the day I die.” Wayne Hancock will bring his band to a “joint” called the Rose Bowl in Urbana Saturday, and he’ll be my guest on the Thursday edition of “Live and Local.”
The Millikin University Choir is the "flagship" of a five-choir program with a well-deserved national reputation for outstanding choral singing. They're hot off their winter tour of the Midwest and will give a concert in Decatur Sunday afternoon. I'll talk with director Brad Holmes on the Wednesday edition of "Live and Local." And, live in our studio, we'll hear University of Illinois faculty tubist Mark Moore, in advance of his recital on campus Thursday night.
Itinerant musician Woody Pines lived as a street performer in New Orleans, wandered the West Coast leading an underground jug band and now lives in Nashville. He writes and plays what he calls “viper jazz” and “modern ragtime,” and he’s coming to Sleepy Creek Vineyards in Fairmount on Saturday with two of his bandmates. Woody Pines will play for us live on the Friday edition of “Live and Local.”
Indiana-based singer-songwriter Bill Price’s most recent album has the wonderful title of With the Eye of a Skeptic and a Few Other Likely Stories. It’s been around a few years now, and the new one, presently untitled, is well underway. He’ll no doubt sing some of the new songs on his current tour, which will bring him to Rochester’s Walnut Street Winery on Saturday. Bill Price will be my guest on the Thursday edition of “Live and Local.”