Classical Californians Archive – Classical KUSC

This is where to find the previous guests we’ve had as our weekly “Classical Californian” since launching September 20, 2023!

October 25, 2023: Althea Waites – Pianist Althea Waites has had a long career as a concert soloist, chamber musician and collaborative artist, and has recorded several albums, most recently Reflections in Time, which includes works by Margaret Bonds, Jeremy Siskind, Samuel Coleridge Taylor, and Curt Cacioppo. The selections she’s chosen to share this week include a performance that reminds her of a brush with greatness she had on a cold night in the 1960s, a fateful symphony by Tchaikovsky that helped save her life, a late work by Beethoven that she waited to learn, and a Verdi selection that’s both operatic and reflective.

October 18, 2023: Adam Schoenberg – Adam Schoenberg has twice been in the top 10 listing of most-performed living composers by orchestras in the United States. He was introduced to several of the pieces that he’ll be playing this week back when he was an undergraduate at Oberlin Conservatory of Music – both in the classroom, and in the audience of a movie theater. A beautiful aria by Henry Purcell, a haunting duet by Messiaen, a few contemporary composers whose names might not be as familiar, the selections are works that have inspired and influenced him, or that he likes to teach his students.

October 11, 2023: Laura Karpman – Laura Karpman has scored the Marvel Studio’s series Ms. Marvel, and the upcoming film The Marvels… For her Classical Californian playlist, she returns to some of the music she listened to obsessively as a student – from the orchestration of light and dark heard in music of Stravinsky, to Benjamin Britten’s slippery strings, to a jazzy reinterpretation of Ravel. And we’ll hear one of her favorite works by Samuel Barber that she had a chance to re-examine in one of her own pieces.

October 4, 2023: Nicholas Phan – A song cycle called Stranger written for the tenor by composer Nico Muhly begins the playlist, examining the immigrant experience in their own words; another short set of songs by Jake Heggie, and a song setting a poem by Walt Whitman composed by Michael Tilson Thomas.

September 27, 2023: Anne Akiko Meyers – The violinist’s playlist includes two composers who have written concertos for her, some selections from the world of movie music, as well as works by a pair of composers best known for their writing for choral voices.

September 20, 2023: Jake Heggie – The composer of the operas Dead Man Walking and Moby Dick helped launch the series, and chose to play a recording that introduced him to the voice of Frederica von Stade, some music for the concert stage and movie screen by Mason Bates, and a visionary opera scene by Gordon Getty.



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KUSC Staff

Classical KUSC, located in the USC building in downtown Los Angeles, broadcasts hand-picked commercial-free classical performances, expert music commentary and coverage of the arts in Southern California. The listener-supported station has been broadcasting for more than 75 years as a broadcast service of the University of Southern California at 91.5(FM) in Los Angeles and Santa Clarita, 88.5 KPSC in Palm Springs, 91.1 KDSC in Thousand Oaks, 93.7 KDB in Santa Barbara and 99.7 KESC in Morro Bay/San Luis Obispo. It is live-streamed at, attracting listeners from around the globe.

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