Live and Local - May 30, 2014

Definition Theatre Company at University of Illinois and Peoria Bach Festival

Summer theater has been a long-standing tradition at the University of Illinois. This year the program has invited the upstart Definition Theatre Company from Chicago to present The Brothers Size, opening this week, as well as a New Short Play Festival. I’ll talk with company members and director Kathleen Conlin on the Friday edition of “Live and Local.” We’ll also hear about the many offerings at this year’s Peoria Bach Festival.

Live and Local - May 29, 2014

Strings Attached at Kickapoo Landing and The Heartland Festival Orchestra in Peoria

Kickapoo State Park in Oakwood is known for its woods, meadows, bluffs, waterways and wildlife. You could add to that its music in spring, summer and fall. The music series at Kickapoo Landing features a growing number of bands, among them one called Strings Attached. They’ll play for us live on the Thursday edition of “Live and Local.” We’ll also hear about Saturday’s concert by Peoria’s Heartland Festival Orchestra.

Live and Local - May 28, 2014

Peter Buffett Talks About Music, Life and His Famous Father

Musician, author and philanthropist Peter Buffett happens also to be the son of financier Warren Buffett. He maintains that the true inheritance from his parents was a philosophical one: to forge your own path in life. “Life Is What You Make It: A Concert and Conversation with Peter Buffett” will be presented at a non-profit management symposium in Chicago next Tuesday, and I’ll talk with Peter Buffett on the Wednesday edition of “Live and Local.”

Live and Local - May 23, 2014

Billy Strings and Don Julin Play Old-Time String Music in Urbana

The story goes that guitar and banjo picker Billy Strings was practically born into bluegrass, because his mother’s water broke during a party packed with musicians. Now twenty-one, he’s currently touring with Don Julin, whose mandolin tunes can be heard on multiple television networks and who wrote the book Mandolin for Dummies.  Billy and Don will play in Urbana Friday night, and they’ll play for us live on the Friday edition of “Live and Local.”

Billy Strings & Don Julin

Live and Local - May 21, 2014

Quartetto di Cremona Releases New Beethoven CD

The Quartetto Italiano was among the most revered of classical string quartets, with a rich recorded legacy over its fifty-plus-year history. But that quartet dissolved in 1980. Twenty years later, four musicians from Genoa came together to form the Quartetto di Cremona, named after the prominent violin-making town. They have released Volume 2 of their traversal of Beethoven’s quartets, and I’ll talk with their violist on the Wednesday edition of “Live and Local.”

Live and Local - May 20, 2014

Krannert Center Announces 2014-2015 Performing Arts Season

The Krannert Center for the Performing Arts at the University of Illinois is considered one of the leading such centers in the country. Its annual offerings include major symphony orchestras, stellar instrumental and vocal soloists, prominent jazz artists, traditional musicians and dancers from around the world and ground-breaking multi-media presentations. Director Mike Ross will share details of the Krannert Center’s 2014-2015 season on the Tuesday edition of “Live and Local.”

Live and Local - May 19, 2014

Baroque Artists of Champaign Urbana to Stage Purcell Opera

Henry Purcell's masterful opera Dido and Aeneas of 1689 adapts the story from Virgil's Aeneid about the love of Dido, Queen of Carthage, for Aeneas, hero of the Trojan War. Complete with dancing, sorcery and historical allegory, the opera will be staged by the Baroque Artists of Champaign Urbana Sunday night. I'll talk with music director Chester Alwes and stage director Philip Johnston on the Monday edition of "Live and Local." [IMPORTANT NOTE: Since this program aired, the location of the performance has been MOVED to The Greal Hall of the Wesley Foundation at 1203 W. Green St. in Urbana. It will NOT take place at the Round Barn on St. Mary's Rd.]

Live and Local - May 16, 2014

Uilleann Piper Paddy Keenan in Champaign and a Roots Music Walk in Urbana

Paddy Keenan is generally considered today’s most accomplished player of the uilleann pipes—the small Irish bagpipes. A driving force within the ground-breaking Bothy Band of the 1970s, he has since led a solo career, with various collaborations, film projects and recordings. Paddy Keenan will play in Champaign Friday night, and he’ll play for us live on the Friday edition of “Live and Local.” We’ll also hear about a Roots Walk happening in Urbana before Paddy’s show.

Live and Local - May 15, 2014

Area Performances by Bells in Motion, Marc Boon & the Unknown Legends and Stone Soup Shakespeare

Bells in Motion is a professional handbell choir based in Springfield, with members from various points in the Midwest. They specialize in music by the likes of Gershwin, Cole Porter and Glenn Miller, and they’ll give concerts in Morton and Springfield this weekend. I’ll talk with their director on the Thursday edition of “Live and Local.” We’ll also hear about performances by Marc Boon and the Unknown Legends in Bloomington and by Stone Soup Shakespeare in Paris, Illinois.

Live and Local - May 14, 2014

Violinist Sara Sasaki in Urbana and the East Central Illinois Youth Orchestra in Champaign

The Urbana Pops Orchestra will present the fifth and final in a series of monthly solo recitals by its members on Saturday afternoon. The orchestra’s associate concertmaster, Sara Sasaki, will give us a live preview of her genre-crossing program on the Wednesday edition of “Live and Local.” I’ll talk also with cellist Jordan Gunn, winner of the East Central Illinois Youth Orchestra’s annual concerto competition, in advance of their spring concert in Champaign Sunday night.

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