Behind the Music: Meet the five bands who will compete in this year's Ultimate Battle of the Boroughs
Tuesday, June 18, 2013
Hundreds of musical acts entered. Just over 60 were selected. They competed for the title in each of New York City's boroughs, made it through two rounds of voting. And now, just five bands are standing in the 2013 Battle of the Boroughs talent quest.
Monday, June 17, 2013
Congratulations to Villalobos Brothers, winner of our Battle of the Boroughs: Manhattan competition! Watch their winning performance here.
Friday, June 14, 2013
Robert Randolph & The Family Band came down to The Greene Space this week to preview their rollicking new material in a sold-out Soundcheck Live event.
Manhattan Battle Finalists: Watch and vote for who should represent the borough in The Ultimate Battle
Monday, June 10, 2013
Thirteen up-and-coming musical acts from Manhattan competed in a sold-out show on June 7. Audiences voted in-house and online. And the numbers are in! See which five bands made it to the next round and vote for your favorite by Sunday, June 16 at 11:59pm ET.
Thursday, June 06, 2013
Be a part of making someone's dream come true! Thirteen bands competed for the Manhattan title in a sold-out show on Friday, June 7, but only one can go on to represent the borough in the Ultimate Battle on June 21.
See which five bands made it to the next round.
Find out which musical act voters chose to represent the borough in the Ultimate Battle.
Thursday, June 06, 2013
Pianist Roy Eaton was among the performers who joined us in April for a concert and conversation, presented by WQXR, about the struggles and triumphs of African-Americans in classical music. The event was part of our EMANCIPATION 150 series.
Eaton chatted with hosts Terrance McKnight and Helga Davis about how he came to classical music and the influence that his childhood neighborhood of Sugar Hill - a center for African-American art and culture during the Harlem Renaissance - had on his musical career. He also told the story of how he beat the odds and went on to play piano despite a severe hand injury.
Watch his performance of Chopin's Fantasie Impromptu below:
Tuesday, June 04, 2013
The 67th annual Tony Awards are coming up on Sunday, June 9. This past year, we've had a number of cast members from nominated shows sit down in The Greene Space through our Inside Look theater series, including Holland Taylor, Laurie Metcalf, Tony Shalhoub and Judith Light, all nominated for their performances.
Thursday, May 30, 2013
The Greene Space recently marked its four-year anniversary of bringing together newsmakers, thought leaders and artists for conversations around the life, arts and politics of New York City - and the world.
On April 28, 2009, we burst onto the scene with an inaugural concert featuring experimental and innovative performances. Among the performers was Daniel Bernard Roumain (DBR), a classically trained composer, performer, violinist and band-leader who blends funk, rock, hip-hop and classical music into an experiential sonic form.
As we get ready for our fifth season, take a look back at this memorable opening performance:
Thursday, May 30, 2013
HOW TO ENTER: Enter the Giveaway by submitting your first and last name, email address and phone number. Entries may be made here by 11:59pm ET June 2, 2013. No purchase or pledge necessary.
ELIGIBILITY: Anyone 18 years of age or older can enter the Giveaway except employees of New York Public Radio and its related organizations, their immediate family or persons living in the same household. Void where prohibited by law.
SELECTION AND NOTIFICATION OF WINNER: The designated number of winners will be noted in the Giveaway description. Winners will be selected by a random drawing within 72 hours of the contest deadline and notified by email. If contact information is requested from winner and the winner does not respond by the deadline indicated in the email notification, the prize will be released to another winner. The chances of winning are dependent upon the number of entries. A list with the winners' names will be kept on file at New York Public Radio and are available by writing Listener Services, 160 Varick Street, New York, NY 10013 or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org
GENERAL: By participating in Giveaways, participants agree to these rules, and that NYPR, its agents and employees will have no liability whatsoever for any injuries, losses, or damages of any kind resulting from their use of the prize or their participation in the Giveaway. Prize is nontransferable and cannot be exchanged for cash. There can be no substitutions for a prize. New York Public Radio may use winners’ names for publicity purposes without further compensation. Taxes and expenses as a result of winning each prize are the responsibility of the winner.
New York Public Radio will not disclose any address, phone number, or email contact information without permission from the contest entrants unless otherwise noted in the Giveaway description.
RESTRICTIONS: Restrictions may apply. One entry per person. Anyone who enters multiple times may be disqualified.
Tuesday, May 28, 2013
FROM THE ARCHIVES | Back in September 2012 Grizzly Bear, the acclaimed New York indie band, joined Soundcheck in The Greene Space to preview their new album, "Shields." The band chatted with host John Schaefer and performed new songs during a live video webcast and taping.
Take a look back at their performance of "Sleeping Ute" below:
Wednesday, May 22, 2013
Pianist Donal Fox was among the performers who joined us in April for a concert and conversation, presented by WQXR, about the struggles and triumphs of African-Americans in classical music. The event was part of our EMANCIPATION 150 series.
After performing his improvisations on Bach, with its fusion of jazz with classical, co-host Helga Davis asked Fox about the origins and inspiration for his style.
Fox said that growing up, three major composers' works were played in his home: Bach's cantatas, Igor Stravinsky's "The Rite of Spring" and Miles Davis' Birth of the Cool.
"So, I’ve been trying to reconcile that ever since," he said. Fox said his style aims to "bring all these different cultures, all this different music together in a way that [is] part of who I am in the American fabric. I didn't want to leave any of it out."
Watch his performance below:
Tuesday, May 21, 2013
When KHORIKOS, an a capella ensemble of New York City musicians, competed in the 2012 Manhattan Battle of the Boroughs, our panel of commentators used words like "angelic" and "powerful" and "goosebumps" to describe their performance. The audience clearly agreed, voting the group in to represent the borough in the Ultimate Battle.
"Performing for the high energy audience at The Greene Space is an absolute thrill, as is managing the high-stakes competitive environment," Peckham. "My advice is don't let the pressure distract you. You're there to show off your talent in a way that connects with the audience, and you should focus on that."
Watch the group's borough-winning performance below:
Tuesday, May 21, 2013
Born in Havana, world-renowned jazz pianist Chuchito Valdés comes from one of the most distinguished musical families in Cuba. He's the son of the legendary Chucho Valdés and grandson of the late Bebo Valdés.
An energetic performer known for his exciting blend of Caribbean rhythms and jazz, Chuchito enjoys a worldwide following. He's played at festivals, clubs and concerts in Cuba and the Caribbean, across the United States and South America and throughout Europe.
In October 2010, Valdés joined us in The Greene Space for The Soul of Cuba, a celebration of Cuban culture through music, readings, food, wine and conversation. Watch his lively performance in the video below.
- Don't miss your chance to see Chuchito live in The Greene Space again June 13! He'll be joining us for an exclusive two-part event. Buy your tickets here.
Monday, May 20, 2013
Roy Eaton was just six years old when he began playing the piano. It was the 1930s, and he was a boy growing up on Edgecombe Avenue in Sugar Hill, New York, a center for African-American art and culture during the Harlem Renaissance.
"It was a wonderful neighborhood," he said. "It was segregated, yes. But it was a segregation that allowed seeds to be planted and blossoms to occur that could not have occurred in any other environment. My next door neighbor was [jazz saxophonist] Sonny Rollins. Down the block was [artist] Faith Ringgold."
The classical pianist and composer was among the performers who joined us for a concert and conversation presented by WQXR about the struggles and triumphs of African-Americans in classical music, part of our EMANCIPATION 150 series. Hosts Helga Davis and Terrance McKnight asked Eaton why he thought black audiences tended to be small for classical music. Hear his answer in the video below.
Soundcheck Live: Talib Kweli performs 'Get By' from his new album 'Prisoner of Conscious' live in The Greene Space
Monday, May 20, 2013
WNYC's Soundcheck presented Brooklyn-based rapper Talib Kweli live in The Greene Space on April 24. Kweli previewed new music from his fifth album, Prisoner of Conscious, coming out this May.
Host John Schaefer asked Kweli about the album's title and the term "conscious hip hop." The title, Kweli said, doesn't refer to his own sense of confinement, but to people's perception of him as an artist.
"When I first started, you just did hip hop," Kweli said. "It wasn't like, okay De La Soul, that's conscious rap and N.W.A is gangster rap. It was like, this is just hip hop. ...People who are very passionate about music like to break music down into sub genres."
On his new album, he challenged himself to go more upbeat and focus on the musicality. "I can't lose focus of my job as an entertainer by making my stuff overtly conscious," Kweli said. "It has to sound good and feel good first."
Friday, May 17, 2013
Cellist Jan Vogler was among the musicians who performed during March's two-part Bach Lounge, presented live in The Greene Space by WQXR.
During the event, co-host David Garland asked Vogler about the difference that playing a Stradivarius cello makes for him in his performances.
"When you play solo, the cello is your communication partner," Vogler said. "And it's very important that you have a communication which brings out more that just what you plan. So some angels come, hopefully. And with this cello, right away there was some magic."
Watch his performance below:
Tuesday, May 14, 2013
On May 6, WQXR presented the Emerson String Quartet in The Greene Space — the ensemble's final New York performance with longtime cellist David Finckel.
WQXR host Jeff Spurgeon asked Finckel about his decision to leave the quartet after making over 40 recordings and collecting nine Grammy Awards with the ensemble over 34 years.
"I've been so fortunate to have these gentlemen as my colleagues and companions exploring such incredible literature, but at a certain point, I looked at my life," he said, likening his decision to mountain climbing. "It doesn't matter how many times you've climbed Mount Everest, if there are more mountains up there in the clouds that you haven't explored, there's an urge to go up."
They were joined on stage by Paul Neubauer on viola and Colin Carr on cello. Here, watch their performance of Tchaikovsky's Souvenir de Florence.
Monday, May 13, 2013
Congratulations to Cat Cosmai, winner of our Battle of the Boroughs: Staten Island competition! Check out the band's winning performance here.
Friday, May 10, 2013
As part of The Greene Space's EMANCIPATION 150 series, WQXR recently presented an evening of performance and conversation honoring the African American experience in classical music. Among the artists who joined us were the Imani Winds, the New York-based wind quintet whose name comes from the Swahili word for "faith."
Hornist Jeff Scott talked to host Terrance McKnight about the inspiration behind the quintet's adventurous style.
"There weren’t many people writing [for wind quintet] in this vernacular: pure jazz inflections, looking back at periods like the 20s and 30s and 40s," he said. "We’ve kind of become known for crossing over into different genres, adding jazz, adding Latin music, adding tango, adding Middle Eastern sounds into the wind quintet genre....We're trying to infuse the music with the music we grew up listening to, the music we were most affected by."
Below, watch the Imani Winds perform "Homage to Duke," inspired by the music of Duke Ellington — a performance that happened to coincide that evening with the jazz legend's birthday.
Friday, May 03, 2013
Nine emerging acts from Staten Island competed for a shot at their borough title. Watch on-demand video of the entire show and see which five bands made it on to the next round.