Classical Music | New Hampshire Public Radio

Classical Music

The Therapeutic Power of Music

Mar 19, 2021
Smooth Radio

Music's benefits for those with dementia are well-known, but it is also therapeutic across the board. We discuss the complex impacts that music has on our brains and how this knowledge is being used in medical treatment and therapy. 

Air date: Monday, March 22, 2021. 

Below is the 2018-19 schedule for the Metropolitan Opera radio broadcasts. All start times are 1:00 pm unless otherwise noted.

Schedule is subject to change, per Met Opera.


December 1


Joseph Colaneri; Angela Meade (Margherita), Jennifer Check (Elena), Michael Fabiano (Faust), Christian Van Horn (Mefistofele)

December 8


BSO Live Summer Series

Jun 11, 2018

This summer, the Boston Symphony Orchestra will be broadcasting performances recorded live in previous years at Tanglewood and Boston Symphony Hall. Full schedule below.

All performances are by the Boston Symphony Orchestra except where noted.

June 2

Thomas Adès, conductor 
Christianne Stotijn, mezzo-soprano 
Mark Stone, baritone

BRITTEN Sinfonia da Requiem 
Thomas ADÈS Totentanz, for mezzo-soprano, baritone, and orchestra

Recorded on November 5, 2016, at Symphony Hall in Boston

This year, the WFMT Radio Network Opera Series features great performances by the Lyric Opera of Chicago, LA Opera, San Francisco Opera, OperaDelaware, Opera Southwest, and an especially exciting partnership with the BBC and the European Broadcasting Union to bring operas from The Royal Opera, Roundhouse, Scottish Opera, Opera North, and Glyndebourne.

Highlights of the WFMT Radio Network Opera Series for 2018 include:

The 2018 Carnegie Hall Live series will air on ClassicalNH Fridays from 8-10pm for 13 weeks.

Friday June 1, 2018

The Philadelphia Orchestra
Yannick Nézet-Séguin, Music Director and Conductor
Lang Lang, Piano
Chick Corea, Piano
Maxim Lando, Piano

BERNSTEIN On the Waterfront Symphonic Suite
GERSHWIN Rhapsody in Blue
BERNSTEIN Symphonic Dances from West Side Story

Friday June 8, 2018

Peter Biello / NHPR

This weekend, the Concord Chorale kicks off its fiftieth season with the music of Mozart. They'll be performing along with the Philips Exeter Concert Choir and Chamber orchestra as well as professional soloists from New Hampshire and the Boston area. NHPR's Peter Biello dropped by a rehearsal and has this report. 

Composer Amy Beach was born in Henniker in 1867.  By the time she was 29 she was famous the world over for being the first American woman to write a symphony.

To celebrate the 150th anniversary of her birth, the University of New Hampshire has been honoring Amy Beach with a series of special performances.  NHPR’s Sean Hurley recently visited the school to learn more about the composer - and her music.

Live broadcasts of the 2017-18 Metropolitan Opera Radio Network season begin on Saturday, December 2, 2017 and run through Saturday, May 5, 2018.

All broadcasts begin at 1 pm unless otherwise noted.

December 2, 2017    Verdi Requiem (Verdi)

December 9, 2017    The Magic Flute (Mozart)

December 16, 2017    Norma (Bellini) - New Production

December 23, 2017    Le Nozze di Figaro (Mozart)

Rob Strong / Dartmouth College

The Dartmouth College Wind Ensemble will celebrate women composers Saturday night with a concert featuring works exclusively by female artists. The show, titled “Music, She Wrote…,” is one of several social-justice oriented performances this season at the Hopkins Center for the Arts.

(Editor’s Note: We strongly recommend listening to this story.)

George Grantham Bain Collection/Library of Congress

This weekend, the music of composer Amy Beach will echo throughout UNH’s campus during a two-day event timed to celebrate her 150th birthday.

Beach, who was born in Henniker in 1867, is often referred to as ‘the Dean of American Women Composers.’ At a time when women were often limited to writing parlor songs and other light fare, UNH Professor Peggy Vagts says Beach was a trailblazer, composing complicated, bold music.

“She took on really major works. She wrote a mass, wrote a symphony. She was the first American woman to do that,” says Vagts.

Carnegie Hall Live is a special series presented by WFMT and running Fridays at 8 pm on ClassicalNH June 30 through September 22. These performances were recorded live in March – June 2017.


June 30, 2017

Simón Bolívar Symphony Orchestra of Venezuela

A thrilling night of dances open the new season of Carnegie Hall with Gustavo Dudamel and the Simón Bolívar Symphony Orchestra of Venezuela.

July 7, 2017

Ian Bostridge & Thomas Ades

June 27, 2017

CONDUCTOR:  Gustavo Dudamel
Yefim Bronfman, piano
St. Lawrence String Quartet

BEETHOVEN  Coriolan Overture
John ADAMS  Absolute Jest (L.A. premiere)
BEETHOVEN  Piano Concerto No. 4

July 4, 2017

CONDUCTOR:  Gustavo Dudamel

MAHLER                   Symphony No. 9

July 11, 2017

CONDUCTOR:  Gustavo Dudamel
 Daniil Trifonov, piano

Performances by the Boston Symphony Orchestra live from Tanglewood will air Sundays at 2:30 pm on WCNH 91.5 and WEVO 89.1 HD2 starting July 9th and running through August 27th.

Note: Due to license restrictions, we are unable to stream these performances online.

July 9, 2017

Andris Nelsons, conductor
Daniel Lozakovich, violin
Kristine Opolais, soprano

MOZART Violin Concerto No. 5 in A, K.219
MAHLER Symphony No. 4

July 16, 2017

Todd Bookman/NHPR

Expect strange, ethereal sounds to bounce around Dartmouth’s campus on Thursday.

To help celebrate the 150th birthday of the Thayer School of Engineering, composer Molly Herron will debut a new piece of music played on student-designed instruments. Herron, 34, has spent the past several months working with students on their creations: from large chimes to string-lined buckets to a heightened take on the musical saw.

Classical NH and Symphony NH are teaming up for a special lunchtime performance! Bring your lunch and join us for an intimate preview of the symphony’s upcoming concerts featuring the music of Smetana and Dvorak. (Full performances to be held April 7 in Concord, April 8 in Nashua, and April 9 in Lebanon, NH.)

When: Monday, March 27 at Noon
Where: NHPR's Studio D, 2 Pillsbury St, Concord, NH

Limited seating available. Attendance is free, but registration is required. Register Here

Hear classical performances from Tanglewood this summer - live! These special broadcast-only events featuring the Boston Symphony Orchestra performing at the Koussevitzky Music Shed at Tanglewood will air in the Concord area at WCNH 91.5 and WEVO 89.1 HD2. [Streaming content will vary.]

Sunday broadcasts run 2:30 - 5 pm. 


Sunday, July 17, 2:30 p.m.

Boston Symphony Orchestra
Gustavo Gimeno, conductor
Yuja Wang, piano

Athenamama via Flickr CC /

Bach, Beethoven, and Haydn are familiar names, but what about Caccini, Strozzi, and Maconchy? Today, we hear sounds and stories from the forgotten female composers of classical music.

Then, one sales strategy has stood the test of time, making the transition from 1950s house parties to digital media - multilevel marketing, or direct sales. But what might seem like an awkward annoyance is actually changing social dynamics for hundreds of thousands of women. 

duncan c via Flickr CC /

Why is six scared of seven? Because seven, eight, nine. Jokes like this are only one example of the ways that we humans like to assign personality traits to the numbers that dictate our world. Today, we explore this seemingly universal tendency to create emotional associations with numbers. 

Then, is tipping culturally determined? Freakonomics investigates the nuances of tipping in the United States with the help of Cornell professor Michael Lynn.

Plus, Botox is well known for freezing the faces of many a Hollywood starlet, but how about freezing out negative emotions? We hear from journalist Taffy Brodesser-Akner about how Botox is being used to treat depression.

Prayitno via Flikcr CC /

Millennials are obsessing over a show about a group of twenty-somethings living their lives and making mistakes in New York City. No, it isn’t Girls, Broad City  – in fact you've probably have seen an  episode of this show...or two...or maybe two hundred. Today, the surprise resurgence of Friends.

And from low-brow sitcoms to high-brow performance - at nearly 20 epic hours, Wagner's Ring Cycle is rarely staged outside of the world's premiere opera houses. We'll hear about one man's mission to condense the masterpiece for local audiences.

These broadcast-only events featuring the Boston Symphony Orchestra performing hand-picked listener favorites from the 2014-2015 season will air in the Concord area at WCNH 91.5 and WEVO 89.1 HD2. [Streaming content will vary.]

Sunday broadcasts run 2:30 - 5 pm.


The 63rd season of the New Hampshire Music Festival is now underway. There will be some classics, some lesser known works, and some big ideas that connect them all together.

The festival’s music director, Donato Cabrera, talks with Weekend Edition about this year's season, which focuses on "American Landscapes." 

Hear classical performances from Tanglewood this summer - live! These special broadcast-only events featuring the Boston Symphony Orchestra performing at the Koussevitzky Music Shed at Tanglewood will air in the Concord area at WCNH 91.5 and WEVO 89.1 HD2. [Streaming content will vary.]

Sunday broadcasts run 2:30 - 5 pm. 


Sunday, July 12, 2:30 p.m.

Boston Symphony Orchestra
Ludovic Morlot, conductor
Pinchas Zukerman, violin

New Hampshire's Poet Laureate Is Hooked On Bach

May 12, 2015
Keene State College

Bach’s “Goldberg Variations” were first published in 1741 and consisted of an aria and 30 variations made up of 32 measures each – a sampler of Western dance music enjoyed during his time.  In her new collection, New Hampshire Poet Laureate Alice Fogel borrows that structure to invent 30 poems of 32 lines each.  The book is called “Interval: Poems Based on Bach’s Goldberg Variations.”

CNH Presents will air Thursdays at 8 p.m. and again Saturdays at 11 a.m..

NH Music Festival, 7.11.13
Mendelssohn: The Hebrides Overture, Op. 26

Symphony NH Orchestra and Chorus, 11.23.13
Gershwin: An American in Paris

NH Music Festival, 7.26.12
Adams: Chairman Dances

NH Music Festival, 7.12.12
Dvorak: Slavonic Dance: Furiant #1
Dvorak: Slavonic Dance: Polka
Dvorak: Slavonic Dance: Furiant #2

Logan Shannon / NHPR

Wednesday’s attack on the offices of Charlie Hebdo in Paris prompted an international outpouring of support from satirists and comedians around the world. On today’s show, a candid conversation with the former editor of The Onion on the careful craft of satire.

Plus, the manliest man of Russia. A simple Google search reveals countless images of Vladimir Putin, riding horseback, hunting, and brandishing weapons. We’ll talk to a scholar about how the Russian leader uses machismo and gender stereotypes to build political legitimacy.

Listen to the full show and click Read more for individual segments.

Miguel O. Strauss via flickr Creative Commons /

Bankrupt orchestras, aging audiences, skyrocketing tuition at conservatories; the death knell for classical music in America is sounding again. On today’s show, a concert cellist offers some tough love for the classical music world.

Then we’ll investigate the condiment that brought down an empire. Among the disturbing parallels between America and the fall of Rome: over reliance on one condiment!

Plus: we’ll sample some of history’s craziest hangover cures. From fried canary to raw eel.

Listen to the full show and click Read more for individual segments.

Live Metropolitan Opera Saturday radio broadcasts can be heard from December through May on ClassicalNH; start times will vary (see schedule below).


Rossini's Il Barbiere Di Siviglia
December 6, 2014 12:00 pm ET
Mariotti; Leonard, Brownlee, Maltman, Muraro, Burchuladze

From the Archives: Roman Totenberg

Jan 29, 2014

In February, 1995, violinist Roman Totenberg performed with the New Hampshire Symphony Orchestra. He joined NHPR ahead of the concerts on our Perspectives program and spoke with host Laura Kiernan.

Young Soloist Advances Career With Symphony NH

Oct 12, 2013
Sheryl Rich-Kern / NHPR

Symphony NH, the granite state's oldest professional orchestra, invited 16-year-old harpist Crystal Napoli to solo at two of their performances; an opportunity that is the stuff of dreams for young classical musicians.

The symphony's music director, Jonathan McPhee, extended the invitation to Crystal after seeing her performance as the 2011 winner of the concerto competition at the Manchester Community Music School.