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KCRW Berlin Amplified: Leitmotifs

A monthly podcast hosted by opera singer Fredrika Brillembourg featuring interviews with musicians and other prominent figures from the world of opera and classical music. The conversations touch on each guest’s original attraction to classical music, talk about their connection to Berlin, and explore each guest’s “leitmotif," or the one thing that brings them back to the refrain over and over again.

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  • 03.10.2020
    5 MB
    05:29
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    Music critic Tim Page on his life-long obsession

    Fredrika Brillembourg reconnects with her old friend, Pulitzer Prize winner and music critic Tim Page. He has worn many hats over the years as an author, editor, radio host and professor of journalism and music at the University of Southern California.

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  • 12.09.2020
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    05:30
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    Michael Naumann on supporting culture – there are ‘euros at the end of the tunnel’

    Host Fredrika Brillembourg Opera singer Fredrika Brillembourg talks to Michael Naumann.Opera singer Fredrika Brillembourg is back with another episode of Leitmotifs, this time with Michael Naumann. He served as commissioner for cultural affairs in the German federal government from 1998 to 2001 and since 2012, Naumann has been the director of the Barenboim-Said Academy.

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  • 18.07.2020
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    05:20
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    Cellist Eckart Runge — Beyond the Artemis Quartet

    In 2019, after 30 years of being a member, cellist Eckart Runge left the world renowned Artemis Quartet to explore solo projects that combine various musical genres, including classical, jazz and rock. In this episode of our monthly series on classical music, he tells Fredrika Brillembourg about his life-long love for the cello and return to the stage.

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  • 13.06.2020
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    05:29
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    Conductor without an orchestra – Marc Albrecht on finding a new passion in trying times

    Host Fredrika Brillembourg talks with German conductor Marc Albrecht, who was named ‘Conductor of the Year’ at last year’s International Opera Awards.

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  • 16.05.2020
    5 MB
    05:21
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    Donald Runnicles – ‘Music can be with you all the time’

    Host and opera singer Fredrika Brillembourg talks with conductor Donald Runnicles. He is the general music director of the Deutsche Oper Berlin and music director of the Grand Teton Music Festival in Jackson, Wyoming.

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  • 02.05.2020
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    05:21
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    ‘I’m not an artist, I’m an enabler’ – Deutsche Oper’s Dietmar Schwarz on past productions and future challenges

    Host and opera singer Fredrika Brillembourg talks with Dietmar Schwarz, Intendant of the Deutsche Oper Berlin since 2012. They look back on his career in the world of opera and discuss the challenges ahead.

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  • 11.04.2020
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    05:20
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    When the stage falls silent

    Every month, opera singer Fredrika Brillembourg hosts “Leitmotifs”, but this month is different: all three opera houses in Berlin are closed and productions are on hold due to the coronavirus pandemic. Producer Monika Mueller-Kroll checked in with Fredrika on how she is spending her time during the outbreak without her colleagues and curtain calls.

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  • 14.03.2020
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    05:28
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    All about that bass – Dominic Seldis on musical blessings and theatrical success

    Host and opera singer Fredrika Brillembourg speaks with Dominic Seldis. Seldis is the principal double bass player in the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra in Amsterdam. He is also a teacher, a conductor, a TV personality and, most recently, the star of the stage show “Music, Maestro!”

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  • 08.02.2020
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    07:18
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    Talking to soprano Alma Sadé

    In the latest segment of our series “Leitmotifs,” Fredrika Brillembourg talks with soprano Alma Sadé. Sadé has been with the Komische Oper ensemble since 2014 and is known for roles such as Maria in “West Side Story” and Hodel in “Anatevka,” among others.

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  • 14.12.2019
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    05:08
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    Award-winning opera director Nicola Raab on her recent production of La Traviata

    Host and opera singer Fredrika Brillembourg talks with award winning opera director Nicola Raab. Her productions have been in opera houses all over the world, including Copenhagen, Valencia, Los Angeles, and Strasbourg.

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  • 16.11.2019
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    05:29
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    Barenboim-Said Akademie dean Mena Mark Hanna on his journey to Berlin and ‘A New Divan’

    Host Fredrika Brillembourg speaks with Mena Mark Hanna, who started his musical life as a boy soprano in the Philadelphia Boys Choir and is now the Dean of Barenboim-Said Akademie in Berlin.

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  • 12.10.2019
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    05:05
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    Orchestra director Adrian Jones on the orchestra as a powerful organism

    Host Fredrika Brillembourg speaks with Adrian Jones, the orchestra director of the Rundfunk Sinfonieorchester Berlin (RSB).

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  • 14.09.2019
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    05:37
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    Conductor Paolo Bortolameolli on musical beginnings and sharing a passion with the world

    Host and opera singer Fredrika Brillembourg speaks with Paolo Bortolameolli. He is the associate conductor of the L.A. Philharmonic and the guest conductor in residence of the Orchestra of the Americas.

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  • 13.07.2019
    4 MB
    04:51
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    Composer and musician Craig Urquhart on Bernstein, life changes and ‘Affirmation’

    Host and opera singer Fredrika Brillembourg speaks with Berlin-based musician and composer Craig Urquhart, about finding his voice, and working for Leonard Bernstein.

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  • 15.06.2019
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    05:28
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    Alexander Polzin and Sommer Ulrickson on their collaborations in opera, theater and dance

    Host and opera singer Fredrika Brillembourg speaks with Berlin-based couple Alexander Polzin and Sommer Ulrickson about their collaborations in the world of opera, theater and dance. Polzin, as well as being a sculptor, has worked extensively as a stage designer and director. Ulrickson is a choreographer, dancer, actor and director.

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  • 11.05.2019
    5 MB
    05:32
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    Author and filmmaker Jamie Bernstein on being ‘Famous Father Girl’

    Host Fredrika Brillembourg talks to Jamie Bernstein about her film, “Crescendo! The Power of Music,” her book, “Famous Father Girl: A Memoir of Growing Up Bernstein” and her relationship with classical music.

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  • 06.04.2019
    5 MB
    05:29
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    Opera set designer Marsha Ginsberg on her career and ‘A Midsummer Night’s Dream’

    Opera singer Fredrika Brillembourg speaks with Marsha Ginsberg, a set and costume designer for opera and theater.

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  • 09.03.2019
    4 MB
    05:03
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    Interview with Anisha Bondy, assistant director at the Komische Oper Berlin

    In this first edition of “Leitmotifs,” host Fredrika Brillembourg is joined by Anisha Bondy, an assistant director at the Komische Oper Berlin. Their talk focuses on Brody’s career, her work with directors such as Barrie Kosky and Andreas Homoki, and her involvement in the Komische Oper’s outreach program “Selam Opera!” – an intercultural program that brings opera to the city.

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