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Speaking Soundly

Artful Narratives Media

Your ticket to backstage conversations with world-renowned musicians. Join MET Opera Principal Trumpet David Krauss for candid and compelling discussions with today’s top performers as they speak about their creative process and lives as artists.

Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.

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Episodes

Lawrence Brownlee
May 28 2024
Lawrence Brownlee
Grammy nominated American tenor Lawrence Brownlee has been hailed as “an international star in the bel canto operatic repertory” (The New York Times) and as a voice for activism and diversity in the classical music industry. The pickleball fanatic discusses his Metropolitan Opera auditions, why the high C's aren't the only notes that matter, and what it was like to be cast as Tamino in The Magic Flute before he had ever seen an opera. Reflecting on his childhood rooted in gospel music, Lawrence shares how "music was inside of him" from the age of nine, what he felt at age twelve from the reaction to his first solo, and how he was inspired by The Three Tenors, specifically Pavarotti. Recounting the time an agent told him he'd never succeed because of his height and race, Lawrence talks about where he finds his confidence and what it's like to get a standing ovation mid-performance.Check out Lawrence Brownlee on Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, Apple Music, Spotify, or the web.  Follow Speaking Soundly on Instagram.Follow David on Instagram.You can find out more about Artful Narratives Media on Instagram and the web.Photograph of Lawrence Brownlee by Zakiyah Caldwell BurroughsThe Speaking Soundly theme song is composed by Joseph Saba/Stewart Winter and used by permission of Videohelper.Speaking Soundly was co-created by David Krauss and Jessica Handelman. This interview has been edited and condensed to fit the time format.Episode copyright © 2024 Artful Narratives Media. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
Kenji López-Alt
May 21 2024
Kenji López-Alt
Kenji López-Alt is a #1 New York Times bestselling author, renowned chef, culinary scientist, podcast host, YouTube sensation, and violinist. Despite his transformative impact on the culinary world and how most people cook at home, he sits down with David to discuss his true passion, making music. Kenji reflects on his early beginnings on the violin at age 4 at New York City's School for Strings, why he thinks the Suzuki method is "pretty special," and how he evaded practice at home, thus David crowning him the "Ferris Bueller of the violin." They go on to discuss Kenji's summers at Greenwood Music Camp where he fell in love with music and pulled off mischievous tricks, why he ultimately chose the path of an engineering degree from MIT instead of studying at a conservatory, and his excitement for an event he's co-hosting with James Ehnes for the Seattle Chamber Music Society this July. In the second half of the interview Kenji talks about his daughter's first performance that made him "ugly cry," as well as his first restaurant job, when he hit rock bottom of his cooking career, and how he changed course. To close it out Kenji contemplates the rewards of practice (cooking and music), his hopes for his children’s musical education, and why Beethoven's Opus 130 still makes his back tingle.Check out Kenji López-Alt on Instagram, TikTok, YouTube, or the web. Shop Kenji's books here and listen to his new podcast The Recipe with Kenji and Deb.To learn more about and buy tickets to Kenji's Tasting Notes event with James Ehnes benefitting the Seattle Chamber Music Society click here. Follow Speaking Soundly on Instagram.Follow David on Instagram.You can find out more about Artful Narratives Media on Instagram and the web.Photograph of Kenji López-Alt courtesy of the guest.The Speaking Soundly theme song is composed by Joseph Saba/Stewart Winter and used by permission of Videohelper.Speaking Soundly was co-created by David Krauss and Jessica Handelman. This interview has been edited and condensed to fit the time format.Episode copyright © 2024 Artful Narratives Media. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
Nathalie Joachim
May 7 2024
Nathalie Joachim
Nathalie Joachim is a Grammy-nominated flutist, vocalist, and composer whose creativity spans pop and electronic to classical music and beyond. Co-Founder of the critically acclaimed duo Flutronix, the Haitian-American musician discusses her debut solo album Fanm d'Ayiti (Women in Haiti) and how a girl's choir from her community's small church spurred her creativity. Nathalie tells David why she has become an early morning composer, how she was introduced to the flute in 4th grade and her rapid progression on the instrument that helped land her on the stage of Avery Fisher Hall (the current David Geffen Hall) at age 11, and when music became her first true love. As native New Yorkers, Nathalie and David share and compare their experiences shopping at Tower Records, attending Juilliard's Pre-College program, and what led David's mom to steal a piece of the iconic school's music stands as a keepsake. To close it out Nathalie shares why she is grateful to Beyoncé and reiterates her unbelievable connection to music. Check out Nathalie Joachim on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Spotify, Apple Music, YouTube, or the web and don't miss her duo Flutronix.You can listen to Nathalie's newest album, Ki moun ou ye, from New Amsterdam / Nonesuch Records, here. Follow Speaking Soundly on Instagram.Follow David on Instagram.You can find out more about Artful Narratives Media on Instagram and the web.Photograph of Nathalie Joachim by Erin Patrice O’Brien.The Speaking Soundly theme song is composed by Joseph Saba/Stewart Winter and used by permission of Videohelper.Speaking Soundly was co-created by David Krauss and Jessica Handelman. This interview has been edited and condensed to fit the time format.Episode copyright © 2024 Artful Narratives Media. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
Avi Avital
Apr 23 2024
Avi Avital
The first mandolin soloist to be nominated for a classical Grammy, Avi Avital's remarkable virtuosity from Baroque masterpieces to contemporary compositions has reignited fascination with the mandolin as an instrument worthy of center stage. Avi discusses the intuitive nature of a plucked instrument and how it still excites him to this day, why he finds boredom a blessing, and how his poor pick grip is recognizable by a select group of mandolinists. Reflecting on his childhood performances with his local youth orchestra, Avi shares how the social aspect kept him playing despite his hatred for the tedious and solitary nature of practice, something he still feels to this day despite his talent and success. Avi considers two turning points in his musical development, the first while in high school when he fell in love with the rock music of Nirvana and Pearl Jam and learned how to play drums, keyboard, and guitar, and the second while attending a performance of Il Giardino Armonico at a Jerusalem theater while studying at The Jerusalem Academy of Music and Dance. To close it out David admits that if he hears the mandolin in Mozart's Don Giovanni, he's in trouble!Check out Avi Avital on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Spotify, Apple Music, or the web.Follow Speaking Soundly on Instagram.Follow David on Instagram.You can find out more about Artful Narratives Media on Instagram and the web.Photograph of Avi Avital by Christoph Köstlin.The Speaking Soundly theme song is composed by Joseph Saba/Stewart Winter and used by permission of Videohelper.Speaking Soundly was co-created by David Krauss and Jessica Handelman. This interview has been edited and condensed to fit the time format.Episode copyright © 2024 Artful Narratives Media. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
Paul Watkins
Apr 9 2024
Paul Watkins
Grammy nominated Welsh cellist and conductor Paul Watkins has enjoyed an illustrious musical career. Whether performing as a chamber musician or music director, his talent for collaboration is unparalleled. Paul reflects on his early beginnings, why he saw professional classical musicians as untouchable in his youth, and how this perspective changed while he attended the Yehudi Menuhin school as a teenager. David asks what it was like to lead the cello section of the BBC Symphony Orchestra at age 20 without any professional experience (terrifying!) and how Paul found the courage to ultimately forge a path as a soloist and chamber musician. Paul discusses how he nearly turned down an audition for the famed Emerson String Quartet, which he ultimately joined thanks to his encouraging wife and a bottle of champagne! To close it out, Paul leaves listeners with invaluable advice.Check out Paul Watkins on Spotify, Apple Music, or the web.You can listen to and learn more about the Emerson String Quartet on YouTube, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Apple Music, Spotify, and the web.Follow Speaking Soundly on Instagram.Follow David on Instagram.You can find out more about Artful Narratives Media on Instagram and the web.Photograph of Paul Watkins by Jurgen Frank.The Speaking Soundly theme song is composed by Joseph Saba/Stewart Winter and used by permission of Videohelper.Speaking Soundly was co-created by David Krauss and Jessica Handelman. This interview has been edited and condensed to fit the time format.Episode copyright © 2024 Artful Narratives Media. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
Béla Fleck
Apr 3 2024
Béla Fleck
Preeminent banjo player Béla Fleck is renowned for his unparalleled skills, adventurous spirit, and musical innovation. He's won eighteen GRAMMY Awards in nine different fields from bluegrass to classical and according to him, he's defied the odds. A kid from Manhattan who became obsessed with bluegrass music, Béla reflects on the first time he heard the Earl Scruggs' theme song for "The Beverly Hillbillies," how he got his namesake from three classical heavy hitters, and why it took nine years to return to the banjo after he fell in love with it at the age of six. Béla discusses his quick progression on the instrument, how he skipped college to his parents' surprise, and when he realized he had to find his own distinct sound. David inquires how Béla came to musically interact with classical greats like Joshua Bell and Edgar Meyer, as well as jazz legend Chick Corea, while simultaneously shedding his imposter syndrome, and to close it out Béla tells David about the feeling of making time stand still during a performance. Check out Béla Fleck on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Spotify, Apple Music, or the web.Follow Speaking Soundly on Instagram.Follow David on Instagram.You can find out more about Artful Narratives Media on Instagram and the web.Photograph of Béla Fleck by Jesse Borrell.The Speaking Soundly theme song is composed by Joseph Saba/Stewart Winter and used by permission of Videohelper.Speaking Soundly was co-created by David Krauss and Jessica Handelman. This interview has been edited and condensed to fit the time format.Episode copyright © 2024 Artful Narratives Media. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
Lara Downes
Mar 12 2024
Lara Downes
We continue our celebration of Women's History month with American classical pianist and trailblazing cultural activist Lara Downes who captivates audiences with brilliant performances highlighting the rich contributions of underrepresented females and Black composers. Lara talks with David about this musical mission and how it stems from personal experiences, which she reckoned with in her early twenties. Reflecting on her "freakishly good" sight reading skills from an early age, Lara describes the "creepy" piano in her childhood basement, how her dad infused her ear with Jazz, and her trick for passing the time while she practiced. She also discusses the joyful discovery of Florence Price's music, the mutual communication that happens when she is performing, and how she discovered she was a New York Times crossword clue.Check out Lara Downes on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, TikTok, YouTube, Spotify, Apple Music, or the web.Follow Speaking Soundly on Instagram.Follow David on Instagram.You can find out more about Artful Narratives Media on Instagram and the web.Photograph of Lara Downes by Max Barrett.The Speaking Soundly theme song is composed by Joseph Saba/Stewart Winter and used by permission of Videohelper.Speaking Soundly was co-created by David Krauss and Jessica Handelman. This interview has been edited and condensed to fit the time format.Episode copyright © 2024 Artful Narratives Media. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
Barbara Hannigan
Mar 5 2024
Barbara Hannigan
Today we're kicking off a brand-new season of interviews and our celebration of Women's History Month by featuring David's conversation with Grammy Award-winning soprano and conductor Barbara Hannigan. Renowned for her exceptional voice, dynamic stage presence, and inspired conducting skills, any of these talents is enough to distinguish Barbara at the forefront of creation. But, when she decided to sing, act, and conduct simultaneously, Barbara found herself forging new ground. She shares where she got the idea to try conducting, how she developed signals to use when simultaneously singing and leading, and why she programs as much Haydn as possible. Barbara reflects on her first teachers, describes how she worked like a professional athlete to overcome performance anxiety, and shares why she feels it's so important to foster the next generation of musicians.Check out Barbara Hannigan on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, TikTok, YouTube, Spotify, Apple Music, or the web and learn more about Barbara's initiatives Equilibrium Young Artists and Momentum.Follow Speaking Soundly on Instagram.Follow David on Instagram.You can find out more about Artful Narratives Media on Instagram and the web.Photograph courtesy of Barbara Hannigan.The Speaking Soundly theme song is composed by Joseph Saba/Stewart Winter and used by permission of Videohelper.Speaking Soundly was co-created by David Krauss and Jessica Handelman. This interview has been edited and condensed to fit the time format.Episode copyright © 2024 Artful Narratives Media. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
Terence Blanchard (Rebroadcast)
Feb 20 2024
Terence Blanchard (Rebroadcast)
Today we continue our celebration of Black History Month by featuring the eight-time Grammy Award winner and two-time Oscar nominee Terence Blanchard whose interview with David originally aired in April of 2023. Original show note: Six-time Grammy Award winner and Oscar nominee Terence Blanchard is a famed trumpeter, band leader, and composer. Recently, he also became the first Black composer commissioned by the Metropolitan Opera since it opened in 1883. Terence discusses his debut at the Met and the enormity of the experience, along with his start at age 19 with The Jazz Messengers, and the greatest lesson he learned from jazz legend Art Blakey. Terence reflects on his expansive work for film, including 17 collaborations with Spike Lee, and answers David's specific questions about a pivotal scene in Mo' Better Blues.Check out Terence Blanchard on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Apple Music, Spotify, YouTube, or the web.Follow Speaking Soundly on Instagram.Follow David on Instagram.You can find out more about Artful Narratives Media on Instagram and the web.Photograph of Terence Blanchard by Cedric Angeles.The Speaking Soundly theme song is composed by Joseph Saba/Stewart Winter and used by permission of Videohelper.Speaking Soundly was co-created by David Krauss and Jessica Handelman. This interview originally aired on April 11, 2023. It has been edited and condensed to fit the time format.Episode copyright © 2023 Artful Narratives Media. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.