NPR’s From the Top with Host Christopher O’Riley: Montclair, New Jersey / 299

Saturday, December 13, 2014 at 8:00 PM  |  Alexander Kasser Theater  |  Presented by Peak Performances at Montclair State University


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From Montclair, New Jersey, this week’s show features the world-renowned Shanghai String Quartet making a special guest appearance. Two lucky teenage performers get the privilege of joining the quartet in a thrilling performance of the music of Johannes Brahms. We’ll also listen to the music a young cellist has chosen to populate his playlists on Spotify—playlists cleverly designed to persuade his high school friends to become fans of classical music (Spotify users – here’s the link to his playlist)

Performers & Repertoire

Beyond the Concert Hall

Teaming up with the Preparatory Center for the Arts at the Cali School of Music, our performers connected with young (sometimes tiny!), local musicians twice during our stay in Montclair. First, a large group of families and youngsters went behind the scenes at the dress rehearsal for the show, and also met with performers afterward. Then, a thoughtful group of older students joined our performers of an Arts Leadership “Open Forum,” where all worked together to shape an interpretation of a chamber music piece by Betsy Hinkle. They also grappled with an arts leadership scenario: what could you do if funding was cut from your own ensemble program at school? ​Special thanks to Carrie Urbanic and Marla Meissner for their help making these events possible.

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Release Dates

  • Monday, June 22, 2015
  • Monday, January 26, 2015
  • Monday, August 29, 2016

Release date is when this show is released to NPR stations, here on our website, and to our podcast. Shows are released on a weekly basis; please check your local NPR station listing for the actual airtime in your market. If you'd like, you can visit NPR's "Find Stations" page to look for your station.

Support Provided By

The Jack Kent Cooke Foundation

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