Finnish conductor Susanna Malkki makes her Heinz Hall debut with works by Sibelius, Shostakovich, and Stravinsky. As Pierre Boulez's successor as Music Director of the Ensemble Intercontemporain, she has moved from the darkness of the far north to Paris, the City of Light. She talks about what Finlandia means to the Finns, Sibelius's character, and the affinities of this Russian/Finnish program.
Elizabeth Gilbert, author of "Eat, Pray, Love" talks about her favorite Pittsburgh poet, her early start as a writer, the success of "Eat, Pray, Love," the circumstances of her second marriage, being branded as a "chick lit" author, whether she "ruined" Bali, and her favorite destination.
The Seattle Symphony's next Music Director, the young French maestro Ludovic Morlot (b. 1974), makes his Heinz Hall debut with works by Weber, Bruch, Tower, and Ravel. Morlot talks about getting the right choral sound in Ravel's Daphnis and Chloe, his background as a violinist, and his work with great conductors in Boston and Tanglewood.
Pittsburgh's Byron Janis overcame secret physical handicaps through sheer determination to become one of the 20th century's greatest pianists. His story is told in a new film premiering on PBS, and a new autobiography. Byron Janis shares some recollections with QED's Jim Cunningham.
Russian pianist Olga Kern makes her Heinz Hall debut in Rachmaninoff's Piano Concerto #1. She talks about her work with conductor Leonard Slatkin, Rachmaninoff's concertos, her musical family and its ties to Rachmaninoff and Tchaikovsky, and meeting Van Cliburn as Gold Medalist at the 2001 Van Cliburn Competition.
PSO Principal Guest Conductor Leonard Slatkin talks about his forthcoming book, his recent Western sightseeing trip, his work with PSO Composer of the Year Joan Tower and her "For the Uncommon Woman," the Dvorak 6th Symphony and Rachmaninoff Piano Concerto #1 with soloist Olga Kern, and Slatkin's latest download-only recording from Naxos.