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The Open Ears Project
5 minutes | Dec 20, 2019
BONUS: Tom Hiddleston on The Nutcracker
Actor Tom Hiddleston reminisces about his childhood love of Tchaikovsky’s ballet The Nutcracker and reveals that he still turns to the Russian Dance whenever he needs a shot of vitality in his day.
12 minutes | Oct 9, 2019
30. Esther Perel on Peace
For the final episode in our opening season of The Open Ears Project, relationship therapist Esther Perel talks about the first time she heard Fauré’s Requiem as a young woman and how it seemed to “understand” an inexpressible sadness she was carrying inside her. She describes with great tenderness the way music connects her to her mother, a survivor of the Holocaust, and how this piece transports her to something akin to a religious experience. Keep listening after the episode to hear the full track.
10 minutes | Oct 8, 2019
29. Krystal Hawes on Imperfection
Project Coordinator Krystal Hawes explores the perfect imperfection of Maurice Ravel's Pavane pour une infante défunte. Keep listening after the episode to hear the full track.
19 minutes | Oct 7, 2019
28. Dessa on Patience
Rapper Dessa discusses how the craft, structure and emotion of Bach's Chaconne in D minor resonates through her life and work, revealing dynamic connections between classical and rap music.
6 minutes | Oct 6, 2019
27. Jesse Eisenberg on History
Actor Jesse Eisenberg talks about how a trip to Poland led him to discover not only more about his family history and the holocaust, but the music of Frédéric Chopin, in particular the Etude Opus 10, No. 1. Keep listening after the episode to hear the full track.
17 minutes | Oct 5, 2019
26. Christopher Wheeldon on A Journey
Choreographer Christopher Wheeldon gives moving insight into his long and inspiring journey with the music of Prokofiev’s Second Violin Concerto. Keep listening after the episode to hear the full track.
13 minutes | Oct 4, 2019
25. Megan Reid on What Changed My Life
TV producer Megan Reid talks about Arvo Pärt’s Spiegel im Spiegel helped spark a lifelong obsession with ballet. Keep listening after the episode to hear the full track.
9 minutes | Oct 3, 2019
24. Terrance McKnight on Overcoming Adversity
Broadcaster Terrance McKnight links family, art, a late Beethoven piano bagatelle, and the extraordinary poetry of Langston Hughes.
6 minutes | Oct 2, 2019
23. Justin Jackson on Imagination
New York City art teacher Justin Jackson talks about how Edvard Grieg’s In the Hall of the Mountain King inspired him as a child to march around the living room, and how he shares that excitement with his young students as he passes on his love of creativity, imagination, and the arts. Keep listening after the episode to hear the full track.
8 minutes | Oct 1, 2019
22. Alison Stewart on Just Letting Go
WNYC host Alison Stewart talks about how she gave up learning the piano when she was young after the sudden death of her piano teacher, and how the rocking ebbs and flows of Satie’s Gymnopédie No. 1 helped her come back to the instrument as an adult — and learn to let go. Keep listening after the episode to hear the full track.
14 minutes | Sep 30, 2019
21. Daniel Libeskind on Perspective
Architect Daniel Libeskind reflects on the healing power of music and architecture and reveals his lifelong obsession with the dazzling Toccata and Fugue by JS Bach.
8 minutes | Sep 29, 2019
20. Jacqui Cheng on Resolution
Digital strategist Jacqui Cheng shares how she discovered the music of Bach via her 1980s Atari 2600 habit, but it’s the Violin Sonata No. 1 that helps walk her through a period of grief. Keep listening after the episode to hear the full track.
7 minutes | Sep 28, 2019
19. Wynton Marsalis on Time and Consciousness
Jazz Trumpeter Wynton Marsalis discusses how Beethoven’s String Quartet No. 16 helped him understand the role of music — and musician — in connecting the past and the future. Keep listening after the episode to hear the full track.
18 minutes | Sep 27, 2019
18. Eva Chen on Nourishing The Soul
Instagram’s Eva Chen talks about how Mozart's Piano Concerto No. 17 helps her switch between gears as she moves from a busy life in fashion to being a working mother to writing a successful series of children’s books. Keep listening after the episode to hear the full track.
9 minutes | Sep 26, 2019
17. Eddie Izzard on Elevation
Comedian and actor Eddie Izzard talks about how Debussy’s Clair de Lune became “comfort music” after her mother died when she was a child, and still elevates her from the noise and chaos of everyday life.
11 minutes | Sep 25, 2019
16. J'nai Bridges on Forgiveness
Opera singer J'Nai Bridges discusses what she learned about forgiveness, memory and legacy from Henry Purcell's heartbreaking Dido's Lament.
11 minutes | Sep 24, 2019
15. Joe Young on How We Listen
US Army reservist Joe Young talks about how Steve Reich's Music for 18 Musicians helped him through a period of deep depression when he was stationed in Texas and required to perform funeral rites for his fallen soldier colleagues.
10 minutes | Sep 23, 2019
14. Robert Macfarlane on A Quiet Kind Of Miracle
Writer Robert Macfarlane reflects on the transporting fragility and beauty of Frédéric Chopin's Berceuse heard in a time of war. Keep listening after the episode to hear the full track.
15 minutes | Sep 22, 2019
13. Nicola Benedetti on Empathy
Violinist Nicola Benedetti reveals what hearing Beethoven’s Violin Concerto as a child taught her about listening, empathy and vulnerability. Keep listening after the episode to hear the full track.
5 minutes | Sep 21, 2019
12. Lee Hill on Finding Your Truth
WNYC's Lee Hill recalls how "Little's Theme" from Nicholas Britell's score to Moonlight resonates with his own life experience as a queer black man and helps him stand in his own truth.
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