Jim Cunningham arrives in Grafenegg with the PSO, and puts Ulrike Niehoff, the Grafenegg Festival's Director of Artistic Administration, on the phone with QED's Anna Singer to talkabout the festival's history and roster of artists.
Grafenegg came out in modern and traditional Austrian finery for the Pittsburgh Symphony's debut at the Grafenegg Festival. Jim reports on the concert with Anne-Sophie Mutter and is joined by Principal English Horn Harold Smoliar, who welcomes a new family member with the PSO on this tour.
Jim Cunningham meets the PSO's new Principal Timpanist, Edward Stephan, a Pittsburgh-area native who is living his dream by perfoming with the orchestra he's admired since childhood. Traveling with a folding bicycle, Ed talks about his past involvement in competitive cycling.
Jim Cunningham joins PSO Principal Oboist Cynthia Koledo DeAlmeida, the orchestra's new Principal Flute, Lorna McGhee, and Vienna Symphony oboist Peter Schreiber for a trip to Eisenstadt, the winter palace of Prince Esterhazy, where Haydn composed and performed many symphonies for the court. Hear about Haydn's home, his wig, and how Haydn lost his head. And get to know Scottish-born Lorna McGhee.
After the PSO's Lithuanian debut in Vilnius, Jim Cunningham talks with Lituanian National Opera and Ballet Theater translator Laura Karnaviciute about working with great artists, and her memories of the 1991 Soviet takeover in Vilnius. Jim also learns basic Lithiuanian phrases. Anne Hall, from the US embassy, talks about the strong US-Baltic ties.We also hear excerpts of Rihm's Lichtes Spiel, Mendelssohn's Violin Concerto, and Tchaikovsky's Symphony #5.
Jim Cunningham catches up with lovebirds Andrew Reamer, percussion, and his wife, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette columnist Ruth Ann Baker. Andy talks about what it's like to be part of the percussion section on this tour, and reveals some special touches in Honeck's Mahler 5. Ruth Ann looks forward to seeing Vienna's tourist sights, ideally in a new pair of shoes.