Classical Classroom

There is a rumor going around that classical music is hoity toity. At Classical Classroom, we beg to differ. Come learn with classical music newbie Dacia Clay and the music experts she invites into the Classical Classroom.

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<p>There's a rumor going around that classical music is hoity toity. At Classical Classroom, we beg to differ. Come learn with classical music newbie Dacia Clay and the music experts she invites into the Classical Classroom.</p>
🇬🇧 English
last modified
2019-11-05 18:48
last episode published
2019-11-01 18:41
publication frequency
8.97 days
Dacia Clay author ( managing editor  
Dacia Clay owner  
Number of Episodes
Detail page
Performing Arts Music Arts



Date Thumb Title & Description Contributors

#205: Nicholas McGegan on Rameau and Music that Stands the Test of Time

Conductor Nicholas McGegan, of San Francisco Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra fame (and so much more) is an expert in conducting Baroque music. To some of us at the podcast, this sounds as obscure as being a modern day village cobbler or ironing one's ha...
Dacia Clay author

#204: A Peculiar Harry Partch Primer, with John Schneider

Guitarist John Schneider is clearly obsessed. In the best, passionate-music-geek kind of way. And the thing is that the object of his obsession - Harry Partch and his work - just engenders that kind of response in people. It probably comes from the fac...
Dacia Clay author

Classical Classroom Special Assembly with Itzhak Perlman

Going to class is a major part of being a classical musician. But have you heard of a "master class"? One student at a time gets up and performs a piece in front of a class, and then the "master" leading the class critiques said performance. Sounds ner...
Dacia Clay author

#203: Jason Vieaux and Jonathan Leshnoff, Musical Frontiersmen

Jason Vieaux is not just a Grammy-winning classical guitarist - he's a pioneer, taking on new works that have never been performed or recorded before, like those of composer Jonathan Leshnoff. Leshnoff is an adventurer, too, writing virtuosic material ...
Dacia Clay author

137: Summer Music – Music Academy Of The West! The Second Nature Of Matthew Aucoin (Rerun)

In our second annual Classical Classroom Summer Music Festival Series, we hit the (sound)waves at the Music Academy of the West in sunny Santa Barbara, California! The third installment of our MAW series features composer, conductor, and pianist, Matth...
Dacia Clay author

#202: Don't Judge Me! Judging Classical Music with David Alan Miller and Richard Scerbo

Richard Scerbo, Director of the National Orchestral Institute, and Albany Symphony Music Director, David Alan Miller team up to teach Dacia why it is important to not just rely on the traditional classical music canon, but to support and embrace new mu...
Dacia Clay author

#75: The Democracy of Chamber Music with Cantus (Rerun)

One of the distinguishing characteristics of chamber music is its inherent “democracy” – each part is of equal importance. Aaron Humble and Paul Rudoi of the Cantus Vocal Ensemble explain how it works when everyone involved in making the music is a spe...
Dacia Clay author

#201: Practicing Rachmaninoff in Public with Tiffany Poon

There's a good chance that you've heard of Yale School of Music grad student and rising classical pianist, Tiffany Poon. Her YouTube vlogs have over 11 million views. In them, she talks casually with fans as she travels to gigs and invites them into th...
Dacia Clay author

#84: JoAnn Falletta Shares Scheherazade (Rerun)

JoAnn Falletta is celebrating her 20th anniversary as Music Director of the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra, so we've gotta give her a shout out with this old gold from the Classroom vault! By the way, did you know that a 2014 survey found that in a lis...
Dacia Clay author

#200: Top 10 Countdown!

It's been nearly six years since we started the Classical Classroom podcast in a small shed that also housed producer Todd's lawn mower. Since then, a lot has happened. We've learned so much from our amazing guests, traveled to music festivals, had par...
Dacia Clay author

Special Episode: Staging Carmen, an Interactive Opera Adventure

When you think of opera, words like "grandiose," "extravagant," and "whoa" come to mind. Those words all describe Georges Bizet's Carmen. Singing, dancing, costumes, sets, orchestras, fight scenes, wigs, drama! How on Earth does something with so many ...
Dacia Clay author

#16: From Schubert to Gaga, the Unfinished Symphony with Jade Simmons (Rerun)

We love celebrating our alumni here at Classical Classroom, and Jade Simmons is one of our faves. This episode is from way back in 2013 when Jade was merely a very successful woman. Now, she's the host of iTunes #1 music podcast, Decomposed. A podcast ...
Dacia Clay author

#89: Awadagin Pratt on Brahms, Brunge, and Beards (Rerun)

We're rerunning this episode with Awadagin Pratt basically because we felt like it. But we don't think you're going to mind, as he is awesome. Let his dulcet tones wash over you as Pratt teaches you all about why Brahms is one of the Big Daddies of cla...
Dacia Clay author

#79: The Women Of Classical Guitar With Valerie Hartzell (Rerun)

April is International Guitar Month! In honor of that, we're bringing back this episode with one of our fave guitarists, Valerie Hartzell, creator/director of the Classical Minds Festival and Competition. Valerie talks about the ladies of classical gui...
Dacia Clay author

#199: Jack of All Emotions - the Music of Elliott Carter with the JACK Quartet

"Classical music is relaxing." "I listen to classical music because it's soothing." "I turn on classical music when I want to concentrate." These are all things we're guessing very few people have said about the composer you're going to learn about in ...
Dacia Clay author

#198: Music Education Month - Idyllwild Arts

In the beautiful San Jacinto Mountains, southeast of Los Angeles, is a place that is basically the ultimate experience in music and arts education: Idyllwild Arts Academy. It's a residential arts high school where young people are immersed in their cho...
Dacia Clay author

#197: Music Education Month - The Village School

Neither Sarah Perkins nor Michael Barber ever intended to become music and arts educators. No, they both had their sights set on the Big Time - performance and Broadway. But life presented each with opportunities to teach music to young people, and bef...

#40: Simone Dinnerstein Goes Bachpacking (Rerun)

March is Music Education Month on the Classical Classroom, but it's also Bach's birthday month. So, it's obviously the perfect time to revisit this episode with Simone Dinnerstein in which we discuss a music education program she started about the musi...
Dacia Clay author

#196: Joyce DiDonato - When Musical Worlds Collide

People are pretty much never just one thing. Each person is made of the stuff in their individual history, including the music. That includes Grammy-winning opera singers. Mezzo-soprano Joyce DiDonato recently completed a project that brought the dispa...
Dacia Clay author

#195: Music Education Month - Washington Performing Arts

March is Music Education Month! This month, we'll look at a range of people and institutions throughout the music education world in search of the real scoop: Is music ed, along with the rest of arts education, being eaten alive by STEM (Science, Techn...
Dacia Clay author

#194: Mason Bates on the Opera-fication of Steve Jobs

Grammy-nominated composer Mason Bates is also a bona fide DJ. As DJ Masonic, he brings classical music and electronica together on the dance floor. As a composer, he brings the sounds of electronica to classical music in places like the Kennedy Center....
Dacia author

#193: Bach in the Underground with Cellist Dale Henderson

To get ready for Bach's March birthday, we bring you the fascinating story of a man on a mission to bring Bach to the people. Bach's music changed cellist Dale Henderson's life. Though the concert hall was a fab venue for sharing this music, Dale wasn'...
Dacia Clay author

#192: The Hilarious History of Classical Music with Igudesman and Joo

Aleksey Igudesman and Hyung-ki Joo make up the classical music comedy duo, Igudesman and Joo. And though they will crack you up with their performances (which you can watch on their YouTube channel along with millions of other viewers), when they talk ...
Dacia Clay author

#191: Talkin' About the Blues (Dialogues) with Rachel Barton Pine

Violinist (and veteran Classical Classroom guest) Rachel Barton Pine talks all about her Music by Black Composers initiative, a project that's been in the works for 15 years, and the companion album she recently released called Blues Dialogues, Vol. 1....
Dacia Clay author

#190: Piazzolla Party! with the Neave Trio

Astor Piazzolla was a bandoneon player and a composer in Argentina who lived during the 20th century. He changed both classical music and tango music by bringing the two together. The Neave Trio, who recently came out with an album of Piazzolla's work,...
Dacia Clay author

#76: MusicWorks: How Sonya Got Her Opera On (Rerun)

We love it when Classroom alums get recognized for their awesomeness. Such is the case for soprano Sonya Yoncheva. In addition to receiving the Opera Award by the Chilean Art Critics Circle, Sonya is on the cover of the Metropolitan Opera's wall calend...
Dacia Clay author

#189: Once More with Healing with Brooklyn Rider

String quartet Brooklyn Rider has a new project called Healing Modes which they're currently touring. While they were in Seattle, we coaxed them into the KING FM studio with the promise of snacks. Just kidding! They came in willingly like most of our g...
Dacia Clay author

#188: Paddling to the Sea with Third Coast Percussion

Third Coast Percussion makes amazing music by hitting stuff. Okay - it's a little more complicated than that. But the Grammy-winning ensemble does spend a lot of time, both at Home Depot and with percussion mentors from other countries, searching for t...
Dacia Clay author

#187: Rachel Barton Pine Talks Bruch and Elgar

What do Max Bruch and Edward Elgar have in common? Violinist Rachel Barton Pine! In this episode, RBP talks about the two composers and their very different violin concertos. Discussed herein: Did Edward Elgar invent Post It Notes? How is Max Bruch lik...

#112: The Ugly Christmas Sweaters Of Classical Music, With Alecia Lawyer (RERUN)

It's Christmas Eve. Chances are, you've heard a lot of beautiful music. If you're looking for more of that, you've come to the wrong place. Welcome to Jingle Hell, where bad songs are born, and good songs come to die. Alecia Lawyer, founder, artistic d...
Dacia Clay author

#186: Kim Kashkashian on the Persistence of Bach

We know what you're thinking: Another episode about Bach?! That's what we said! In fact, in this episode we ask Grammy-winning violist Kim Kashkashian to explain why classical musicians play and record the same music repeatedly, and specifically, why i...
Dacia Clay author

#185: On Discovering Hidden Classical Gems with Marc-André Hamelin

Marc-André Hamelin is many things: a renowned pianist, a composer, an Officer of the Order of Canada, and a record collector of major proportions. The hands-on, no robots or algorithms, no safety net, digging in dusty bins in record shops variety. In f...
Dacia Clay author

#184: Working Hard with Hilary Hahn

Violinist Hilary Hahn has achieved more at just 39 years old than most of us will in a couple of lifetimes: multiple Grammy awards, 1594 concerts (so far), 20+ albums, 2 episodes of the Classical Classroom podcast, 2 kids, and a talking violin case. In...
Dacia Clay author

#183: All-Star Ashley Bathgate's Primer on New Classical Music

If you've ever wondered how playing bowls of water is related to traditional classical music, this is the episode for you. Cellist Ashley Bathgate (of Bang on a Can All-Stars fame) was classically trained at Yale University School of Music, educated in...
Dacia Clay author

#182: Fantastic Bell - Joshua Bell on Max Bruch's "Scottish Fantasy"

Sometimes composers just make stuff up. That is the lesson that Grammy-winning, super duper famous violinist Joshua Bell teaches in this episode of Classical Classroom. He also talks about how this is not just okay - it can be great, as it is in the pi...
Dacia Clay author

#181: The Magicians - Daron Hagen on Orson Welles

Composer, conductor, and librettist Daron Hagen recently created a new magic trick: An opera that's not an opera about the director Orson Welles (Citizen Kane) but not necessarily about Orson Welles which may be performed in a different way every time ...
Dacia Clay author

#180: Icelandic Music History 101 with Sæunn Thorsteinsdóttir

Cellist Sæunn Thorsteinsdóttir is from the once-isolated island country of Iceland, a land of ice and snow and geothermal power and awesome music. In this episode, Sæunn tells the unique history of Icelandic classical music (or "music," as they call it...
Dacia Clay author

#179: The Miro Quartet on Beethoven's Opus 131, an Autobiography

Life isn't always puppies and kittens (she stated sagely). Sometimes, it can be downright tough - maybe your family is falling apart and you're a famous composer and you're going deaf. We've all been there, amiright? In this episode, John Largess and J...
Dacia Clay author

#178: Anne Akiko Meyers on Working with Superheroes

Arguably, Anne Akiko Meyers is darn admirable herself. The violinist has scads of fans. She's been Billboard's #1 classical artist. I mean, she's been on Morning Edition AND All Things Considered. But in this episode, Meyers is the fan rather than the ...

#177: Sharon Isbin on Spanish Art Song, TM, and Everything Else

  Hold on to your hats, people: This episode with multi-Grammy Award winning classical guitarist Sharon Isbin covers a lot. Because how often do you get to talk to Sharon Isbin?? Learn about everything from the David Lynch Foundation and Transcendental...

Episode 176: Composing Music for Film About Music with Jono Hill

Composer Jono Hill was given a unique task: to compose the score for a film about a classical musician. The movie As Far as the Eye Can See (directed by David Franklin and written by Paden Fallis) follows Jack Ridge, a now 40-year-old former Van Clibur...
Dacia Clay author

#175: The Unsolved Mystery of Women Composers with Angela Draghicescu

Pianist Angela Draghicescu never meant to become a classical music investigator. But a simple desire to play good music led her to an unavoidable conclusion: some very important composers were grossly underrepresented in classical music repertoire. But...
Dacia Clay author

Episode 174: Critiquing Anne Midgette

Anne Midgette, chief classical music critic at the Washington Post, recently wrote an article that caught our attention called, "A beginner’s guide to enjoying classical music. No snobs allowed." We figured that she must have been listening to Classica...

Raiders of the Lost Podcast: The Classical Classroom drama

The Classical Classroom is back! But from where?? Hear host Dacia Clay recount the epic, harrowing tale behind the show's hiatus in this teaser episode. New full, real episodes will be out any day now. Dacia will be asking even more, even dumber questi...

New Season of Classical Classroom Starting September 2018

Classical Classroom is finally coming back. Dacia Clay will be asking even more, even dumber questions about classical music to really smart people like Joshua Bell, Sharon Isbin, Hillary Hahn, Miro Quartet, Jono Hill, Anne Akiko Meyers, and many, many...

#64: RERUN - Journey To The Symphony’s Center

We just heard that Classroom guest Peter Boyer is up to some big stuff (go Peter, it’s your birthday…): First, the National Symphony Orchestra – that’s the orchestra in residence at the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington D.C. – will b...

#41: RERUN - Pretty Pattern Preludes With Karim Al-Zand

Greetings listeners! We’re rerunning this episode of the podcast in honor of Karim Al-Zand’s recent premiere of the new work, “The Prisoner,” at the Cabrillo Festival of Contemporary Music in Santa Cruz, California. The piece was inspired by the writin...

#48: RERUN - The Texas Tenors Teach Tenor Types

How, exactly, does one know that he is a “light lyric tenor,” or a “Spinto tenor,” or a “dramatic tenor”? Is there like, a Tenor Task Team? Two members of the Texas Tenors – JC Fisher and John Hagen – teach the types of tenor to us. We also learn about...

#63: RERUN - The Trumpet Lesson

This episode does double duty: teaches you all about the trumpet and trumpet playing, while carrying out the secondary mission of Classical Classroom, i.e., the humiliation of the show’s host. Trumpet players George Chase and Jason Adams of the River O...

#173: Mozart’s Death Demystified (No Really!), With Robert Greenberg

The story of Mozart’s death has, over the years, taken on an awful lot of…story. Extant theories regarding how he died number in the hundreds and are still emerging. Even yours truly did an episode of Classical Classroom to try to get to the bottom of ...