Airs Saturday, March 1 at 12 noon. The 2013-14 Metropolitan Opera Radio Broadcast season continues with a live broadcast of Borodin’s operatic masterpiece Prince Igor. Ildar Abdrazakov stars as the title character, a 12th-century Russian ruler who went to war against the Polovtsian tribe. Gianandrea Noseda, an acclaimed interpreter of Russian music, conducts a new edition of the opera—left unfinished by Borodin at the time of his sudden death in 1887—which he and director Dmitri Tcherniakov created specially for the Met production. The cast also includes Ukrainian soprano Oksana Dyka in her network broadcast debut as Igor’s wife, Yaroslavna; Anita Rachvelishvili as the fiery Polovtsian princess Konchakovna; Russian tenor Sergey Semishkur in his network broadcast debut as Igor’s son, Vladimir; Mikhail Petrenko as Yaroslavna’s brother, Prince Galitsky; and Štefan Kocán as Khan Konchak, leader of the Polovtsian forces. Prince Igor will be heard live over the Toll Brothers-Metropolitan Opera International Radio Network.
Airs Tuesday, February 4 at 11 a.m. The Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra is an integral part of a city rich with a history of important composers and performers. The incomparable orchestra is joined by maestro Franz Welser–Möst for an exploration of enduring scores by influential composers from their native land and a contemporary work from a composer who is creating in Vienna today. The program includes Bruckner’s magnificent and genial Sixth Symphony and Mozart’s Symphony No. 28, paired with Johannes Maria Staud’s On Comparative Meteorology.
Airs Friday, February 28 at 11 p.m. Insightful review of the life of legendary blues guitarist Robert Johnson and his enduring musical legacy. Includes 20 of his legendary recordings and brand-new, exclusive interviews with contemporary blues musicians and historians.
Airs Friday, February 28 at 10 p.m. Zydeco Nation is an hour-long, music-rich documentary that tells the story about an epic chapter in modern American history. Starting during World War II, French-speaking Louisiana Creoles began moving across the country to Northern California in search of both jobs and freedom. They were part of the Great Migration: the movement of six million African Americans from the Jim Crow South to the big cities of the West, North, and Midwest starting in 1915. In her recent bestseller The Warmth of Other Suns, Isabel Wilkerson calls that migration “the first big step the nation’s servant class ever took without asking.” The Creoles came from the rice and cane fields of South Louisiana and East Texas. The Oakland area offered shipyard jobs and the promise of better futures—so off they went. They brought with them the musical soundtrack to their lives back home. It was a bluesy, French-inspired, dance music played on the accordion and washboard. They called it zydeco—from the French word for green beans.
Airs Friday, February 28 at 9 p.m. Crescent City Blues takes listeners to the hidden world of New Orleans corner joints—bars far from the French Quarter, in neighborhoods like Central City, Treme, and Pigeontown. These clubs, patronized almost entirely by locals, nurture a resilient blues and rhythm-and-blues scene that is often overshadowed by the Crescent City’s legacy as a jazz town. They are an essential part of New Orleans’ cultural history, but they are struggling—because of the recession, the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, and potentially the BP oil spill.