Friday, October 26, 2007

Harvey Shapiro (1911-2007)

Legendary musician and teacher has died. He was 96

Harvey Shapiro, of Russian parentage, was born in New York City. His first cello teacher was Willem Willeke (1880-1950), who was both a medical doctor, and a well-known cellist of the early 20th century. Willeke was the principal cello teacher at the "Institute of Musical Art," which merged with Juilliard in 1926. Shapiro also studied with Diran Alexanian, who was both a pupil and partner in teaching with Pablo Casals. He was a winner of the highly regarded Loeb and Naumburg Prize. In 1937 he joined the NBC Symphony Orchestra under Arturo Toscanini, and from 1944 to 1946 he served as principal cellist.

In 1938 or 1939, at the invitation of NBC, he, Oscar Shumsky, Josef Gingold and William Primrose founded what became called the Primrose String Quartet, considered to be one of the finest quartets of its time. He and the Primrose Quartet along with Emanuel Feuermann, another famous cellist, gave historic performances of the Schubert Quintet.

From 1947 to 1963 Shapiro performed with the WQXR Radio Quartet. He has recorded as soloist with Victor Records, Columbia Records, US Decca Records and Nonesuch Records.

Later life and career

In 1970, on recommendation of Leonard Rose, he became professor of cello at the Juilliard School in New York, a position he held for more than twenty years. Many of his students have gone on to become famous cellists in their own right. In 1991 he was nominated as "Best Teacher of the Year" at Julliard, and he was awarded the "Schatzer Award".

Sunday, October 21, 2007

Yo-Yo Ma on Studio 360

October 19, 2007

Yo-Yo Ma
The virtuoso cellist has gotten a lot of attention in the last decade for forming and leading The Silk Road Ensemble –- a group that draws its members and music from countries all across Asia. Whether on the road or at home in Cambridge, Ma tells Kurt how every day begins with a Bach cello suite.

Bonus Track: Ma plays Bach
Yo-Yo performs J.S. Bach's "Suite for Solo Cello No. 1 in G Major: V. Menuett" in Studio 360.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

This Old Cello....

Yo-Yo Ma and other experts explore the inner workings and outer components of a cello.

Almost Everything You Should Know about the Dvorak Cello Concerto

An exploration of Dvorak's Cello Concerto including interview footage with Yo-Yo Ma and performance footage from the New York Philharmonic.

The legendary Neikrug Sauret Cadenza

Tuesday, October 9, 2007