From the Top

From the Top From the Top empowers and celebrates young musicians through our NPR radio and fellowship program.
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From the Top celebrates the power of music in the hands of extraordinary young people.

07/24/2023

Florence Price is best known as the first African American woman to have her music performed by a major symphony orchestra. Today, we’re sharing an expressive performance of her String Quartet No. 2 played by the Breshears Family (The Stars Aligned Siblings) on From the Top in 2021.

07/12/2023

Are you a dedicated musician between the ages of 8–18? Learn more about becoming a Learning and Media Lab Fellow and sign-up for our FREE Virtual "Live" Auditions this August 1st – 25th, 2023.

Meet From the Top’s Admissions Team from the comfort of your home, practice room, or summer camp! Learn more about the Learning and Media Lab Fellowship and audition for us virtually.

You could be heard on NPR Stations around the country!

https://fromthetop.org/apply/

FTT alums perform all over the world, and recently our alum Vibha Janakiraman performed at the White House during a stat...
07/03/2023

FTT alums perform all over the world, and recently our alum Vibha Janakiraman performed at the White House during a state visit! Congrats Vibha!

Pennsylvania teen Vibha Janakiraman began studying the violin at age 6. Since then the 17-year-old Indian American from West Chester has performed at various prestigious venues and was among this year’s U.S Presidential Scholars in the arts. The young musician added another feather to her cap thi...

Wonderful insights from From the Top alum Maya Shankar!
07/03/2023

Wonderful insights from From the Top alum Maya Shankar!

Maya Shankar shares lessons she learned from playing the violin for navigating life's joys and challenges.

06/30/2023

17-year-old cellist Joel Kim performs the first movement (Andante — Allegro Vivace) of Beethoven’s Cello Sonata No. 4 in C major, in collaboration with pianist Kim Lee. This wonderful piece marked a new musical direction for the great composer. What do you think?

06/29/2023

Enjoy the fast-paced Quatre Visages: The Wisconsonian by Darius Milhaud performed by alum Nicolette Marie Sullivan-Cozza in collaboration with pianist David Pasbrig.

06/23/2023

The Atlanta Music Project Senior Youth Choir, directed by B.E. Boykin, performs the moving Spiritual, "We Shall Walk Through the Valley," arranged by Marques L.A. Garrett. Recorded at Atlanta Music Project in Atlanta, Georgia.

Learn more about Atlanta Music Project on this week's episode of From the Top!
https://fromthetop.org/show/show-433/

06/22/2023

17-year-old flutist Sasha Tarassenko and host Peter Dugan perform Lenski’s Aria from the opera “Eugene Onegin” by Tchaikovsky. Recorded at Atlanta Music Project.

Learn more about Sasha on this week's episode of From the Top!
https://fromthetop.org/show/show-433/

06/22/2023

This piece was originally written by Sibelius for piano, but was reimagined by Eriko Daimo for marimba. Percussionist Anh Ho, 16, brings great sensitivity to his performance of The Spruce. Anh is a member of the Atlanta Symphony Youth Orchestra and will attend NYO USA / NYO2 this summer!

Learn more about him on this week's episode of From the Top!
https://fromthetop.org/show/show-433/

Recorded at Atlanta Music Project

06/20/2023

Pianist Helen Bryant first appeared on From the Top four years ago in her hometown of Atlanta, Georgia. She returned to the show, having just graduated from the University of Michigan, to perform a wonderful four hands piece with host Peter Dugan.

Enjoy Ravel’s Mother Goose Suite for Four Hands, III. Laideronette, Empress of the Pagodas, recorded at Atlanta Music Project in Atlanta, Georgia.

06/20/2023

16-year-old cellist Sage Mae Lima-Jeffries, from Atlanta, Georgia, performs the beautiful Sicilienne in E Flat Major by Maria Theresia von Paradis with host Peter Dugan at the Atlanta Music Project.

Atlanta Music Project

🎧🎵New Episode🎧🎵Four Hands Piano & Atlanta Music ProjectClarinetist Alex Laing joins Peter Dugan at the Atlanta Music Pro...
06/20/2023

🎧🎵New Episode🎧🎵

Four Hands Piano & Atlanta Music Project

Clarinetist Alex Laing joins Peter Dugan at the Atlanta Music Project for a program featuring musicians from Georgia! We hear the fantastic Atlanta Music Project Senior Youth Choir performing a Spiritual. A flutist shares her love for Eastern European Folk music, a percussionist performs Sibelius on marimba, and Peter collaborates on a gorgeous four handed Ravel with an alum.

Listen Now:
https://fromthetop.org/show/show-433/

Atlanta Music Project

06/13/2023

From the Top makes a difference in young musicians' lives - but don't take our word for it, ask Kayden:

“I will remember how many wonderful musicians and new interesting people I have met. It was really an amazing opportunity to meet other people like me.”

-Kayden Kelly, 15-year-old pianist

Help keep the music playing and support young musicians like Kayden. Click below to make your gift now.

06/06/2023

Congratulations to From the Top’s 2022-2023 Learning and Media Lab Fellows!

As we complete our 2022-2023 season of learning, we wanted to take a moment to acknowledge the 87 musicians who completed From the Top’s Learning and Media Lab Fellowship.

Each Fellow…

*Completed seven online learning sessions focusing on community engagement, artist life, and content creation/recording!
*Completed a community engagement project such as a virtual concert with Seacrest Studios at Children’s Hospital Colorado or curating their own special concert for a community member.
*Asked insightful questions of guest artist speakers: Davóne Tines, Emi Ferguson, Jazmín Morales, Anthony Roth Costanzo, Michael Thurber, Kevin Olusola, Adrian Anantawan, and Nathalie Joachim.
*Recorded for From the Top’s NPR broadcast/podcast.
*Met new friends from across the United States.

Cumulatively, the Fellows spent 696 hours working with From the Top!

Twenty of the Fellows are also recipients of a $10,000 Jack Kent Cooke Young Artist Award.

We also want to acknowledge the two wonderful large ensembles that were featured on From the Top this season, Washington Performing Arts Children of the Gospel Choir and Atlanta Music Project Senior Youth Choir.

Fellows, we are so proud to call you alumni! Well done.
From the Top is now accepting applications for the 2023-2024 Learning and Media Lab Fellowship and conducting Live “Virtual” Auditions during the month of August. Visit fromthetop.org/apply for more information.

From the Top is a national non-profit media and education organization founded in Boston in 1999.

From the Top is grateful to receive support from The Alphadyne Foundation, The Jack Kent Cooke Foundation , National Endowment for the Arts , Massachusetts Cultural Council , the Massachusetts Office of Travel and Tourism Visit Massachusetts, Howard and Geraldine Polinger Family Foundation, The Volgenau Foundation, and contributions from many generous individuals.

06/05/2023

"I’m Kyle, a 17-year-old cellist from Virginia. I performed on From the Top (Show 424) with Peter Dugan and Charles Yang.

This experience allowed me to spread my joy for music around the world. I am so grateful to have the support of such an amazing organization like From the Top!

Thank you for making a difference!"

- Kyle Ryu

Make a difference to young musicians across the country. Make your donation to From the Top today! From the Top is an independent non-profit organization supported by generous indiviiduals like you.

06/02/2023

17-year-old Soprano Amelia Reines performs Barber’s hopeful “Sure on This Shining Night,” (from Four Songs), with pianist Brian Helsel.

Learn about Amelia on this week's episode of From the Top, https://fromthetop.org/show/show-432/

WQED Pittsburgh Pittsburgh Girls Choir

06/01/2023

At From the Top, you are more than just a listener ¬– you are an integral part of our journey and our successes. Every episode we produce, every young musician we celebrate, is inspired by your dedication and support.

Here's how you've helped us make a difference:

NEW MUSICIANS:
We released our first episode that celebrated disabled and neurodivergent young musicians in March.

EXCITING GUESTS:
Our young musicians were mentored by incredible leaders, including Emmanuel Ax, Itzhak Perlman, and Deborah Borda.

GATHERINGS:
For the first time since March 2020, groups of young musicians gathered in person to network, learn, and perform.

Your ongoing support can help us continue to nurture and amplify the voices of our young musicians. Please consider donating today to help us reach our fundraising goal of $45,000 by June 30th.

https://secure.qgiv.com/event/fromthetop/

05/31/2023

This fantastic work by Liszt was inspired by Verdi’s opera Rigoletto. 18-year-old pianist Christopher Tillen immersed himself in learning about the opera to enhance his performance. Enjoy Christopher’s theatrical performance of Paraphrase de concert sur Rigoletto de Verdi.

Christopher is involved in many activites in school, learn more about him in this week's episode: https://fromthetop.org/show/show-432/

From the Top is holding Virtual “Live” Auditions August 1st – 25th, 2023.Meet From the Top’s Admissions Team from the co...
05/31/2023

From the Top is holding Virtual “Live” Auditions August 1st – 25th, 2023.

Meet From the Top’s Admissions Team from the comfort of your home, practice room, or summer camp! Learn more about From the Top’s Learning and Media Lab Fellowship and audition for us virtually.

Spread the word to the middle and high school aged musicians in your life!

Learn more at https://fromthetop.org/apply/from-the-top-live-auditions/.

05/30/2023

On this week’s episode of From the Top, we are enjoying performances of some of classical music’s great masters, like violin master Fritz Kreisler.

18-year-old violinist Dániel Hodos and pianist Peter Dugan perform Kreisler’s Marche miniature viennoise, which shows off the composer’s humor and gaiety.

Learn more about Dániel at https://fromthetop.org/show/show-432/.

05/30/2023

We can’t help but smile at this jubilant performance of Beethoven’s Sonata for Horn and Piano in F Major by Ashley Chiang, 16, and host Peter Dugan.

Learn more about Ashley, including her experience as a scout in Taiwan, on this week's From the Top! https://fromthetop.org/show/show-432/

🎧🎵New Episode🎵🎧We’re treated to the magical music of Classical masters Beethoven, Tchaikovsky, Liszt, and Kreisler. Plus...
05/30/2023

🎧🎵New Episode🎵🎧

We’re treated to the magical music of Classical masters Beethoven, Tchaikovsky, Liszt, and Kreisler. Plus, a 17-year-old soprano finds inspiration in the history of the first African American Opera House in the United States in her hometown of Pittsburgh. And two teens tell us what it’s been like to leave their home countries to study music in New York and Los Angeles.

Listen Now: https://fromthetop.org/show/show-432/

05/25/2023

18-year-old clarinetist Louis Auxenfans and 15-year-old violinist Henry Auxenfans perform the Rondo from Fuchs’ Duo for Clarinet and Violin. Enjoy their incredible musical chemistry!

The Auxenfans brothers are members of the Chicago Youth Symphony Orchestras

05/12/2023

The award-winning Plexus Quartet from Hebron High School in Carrollton, Texas perform Clint Bliel’s “The Jig”, a delightful piece that takes inspiration from Celtic music.

Members of the quartet are Aayan Patel (Soprano Sax), 16, from The Colony, Texas; Luke Sharp (Alto Sax), 16, from Lewisville, Texas; Daniel Kim (Tenor Sax), 17, from Carrollton, Texas; and Nigel Duplessis (Baritone Sax), 17, from Plano, Texas. They are coached by Mark Smith.


05/11/2023

Renowned pianist and composer Stephen Hough wrote Fanfare Tocatta for last year’s Van Cliburn International Piano Competition. Enjoy Celine Chen’s fantastic interpretation of this joyous work.

Learn more about Celine on this week's episode of From the Top: https://fromthetop.org/show/show-431/

05/10/2023

18-year-old violinist Blues Zhang plays Saint-Saëns’ famous Introduction et Rondo Capriccioso, Op. 28 in collaboration with host and pianist Peter Dugan.

Learn more about Blues on this week's episode of From the Top: https://fromthetop.org/show/show-431/

Did you know that Peter Dugan loves birding? Read more about our host in this wonderful profile posted by Coregami
05/10/2023

Did you know that Peter Dugan loves birding? Read more about our host in this wonderful profile posted by Coregami

As host of NPR’s “From the Top,” Peter Dugan shines the spotlight on our nation’s youngest classical musicians.

05/09/2023

17-year-old guitarist Brady Davis deeply admires Leo Brouwer, the composer/conductor/guitarist who wrote this piece. Enjoy Le Decameron Noir, I. La Harpe de Guerrier.

Learn more about Brady on this week's episode of From the Top: https://fromthetop.org/show/show-431/

🎵🎧New Episode🎵🎧Recorded at Colburn School Host Peter Dugan Piano We meet an award-winning saxophone quartet from Texas. ...
05/08/2023

🎵🎧New Episode🎵🎧

Recorded at Colburn School
Host Peter Dugan Piano

We meet an award-winning saxophone quartet from Texas. A teen flutist who is also a talented figure skater performs Faure. An impressive 16-year-old performs a piece by a guitarist/composer who inspires him, and a violinist from Hong Kong studying in Los Angeles tells us about how a letter from a stranger impacted his life.

Listen Now: https://fromthetop.org/show/show-431/

05/05/2023

17-year-old soprano Amelia Reines from Pittsburgh sings Mozart’s “Porgi Amor” from The Marriage of Figaro, with pianist Ellen Fast.

WQED Pittsburgh Pittsburgh Girls Choir The Ellis School

05/04/2023

We continue our series highlighting the beautiful orchestral work “Excerpts From the Reason I Jump”, featuring 26-year-old autistic cellist Adam Mandela Walden. The piece reflects what it’s like living with autism. This is the third movement “Loudly & Weirdly,” performed by Adam Mandela Walden and Berklee World Strings, conducted by Dr. Eugene Friesen.

“I am a citizen of the autism world. I liked creating a piece for the orchestra that told what it was like living in my world, using my only fluent language – music, and the words of my fellow traveler in autism, author Naoki Higashida.” – Adam Mandela Walden

Berklee College of Music

05/04/2023

We continue our series highlighting the beautiful orchestral work “Excerpts From the Reason I Jump”, featuring 26-year-old autistic cellist Adam Mandela Walden. Today’s excerpt introduces Adam and his journey with autism, performed with Berklee World Strings, conducted by Dr. Eugene Friesen.

“Excerpts from The Reason I Jump,” Mvt.1: “Preface,” composed by Dr. Eugene Friesen, Professor of Music and Director of Berklee World Strings with cello melodies by Adam Mandela Walden, cellist and Berklee College of Music student. Words by Naoki Higashida. Inspired by author Naoki Higashida’s book: The Reason I Jump: The Inner Voice of a Thirteen-Year-Old Boy with Autism.

Berklee College of Music

05/04/2023

May the fourth be with you!

Couldn't resist re-sharing this gem from our archives.

Happy Star Wars Day.

04/28/2023

17-year-old cellist Joel Kim plays Ciaccona from Britten’s Cello Suite No. 2, Op. 80, which was inspired by Bach’s cello suites and Baroque dancing.

04/27/2023

This performance by 18-year-old violinist Dexter Doris and pianist Peter Dugan will carry you away to a beautiful moment in time. Enjoy Enescu’s Pastorale, Menuet triste et Nocturne for Violin and Piano, III. Nocturne.

04/26/2023

16-year-old pianist Jordan Manasse performs the exciting fourth movement “Vivace” of Prokofiev’s Sonata for Piano in D Minor. He demonstrates his versatility as he attacks this lively movement.

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Tune into HPR-2 on Saturday, February 26 at 10 a.m. and celebrate young Black musicians on From the Top

In recognition of Black History Month, this episode, curated and co-hosted by From the Top Assistant Producer, Alum, and Oboist Dave Norville, highlights favorite moments from inspiring young Black artists featured on the program over the years.

Learn more or listen on demand: https://fromthetop.org/show/black-history-month-special-hl-35/
Orchard String Duo

NPR Music From the Top
Here are three images from our photoshoot in the woods. Yes, the harp was a big hit with the walkers that morning. Several stopped to watch all the action and decided to come back for a micro concert during down time.

The Orchard String Duo will be featured on Sunday, March 13, 2022, on NPR's program "From the Top."

Orchard String Duo is comprised of siblings Andrew (guitar), 16, and Aden Eva (harp), 15, Barbuta. As a duo, they’ve performed together in a variety of settings, and they also play individually as soloists. https://fromthetop.org/musician/orchard-string-duo/

From the Top
From the Top celebrates Black History Month with a special highlight show curated and co-hosted by Assistant Producer/Alumni/Oboist Dave Norville! They revisit some of Dave's favorite moments from inspiring young Black artists on the program over the years including BCC's performances of "In His Care-O", trad. spiritual, arr. William Dawson and "My Soul's Been Anchored In The Lord", trad. spiritual, arr. Moses Hogan.
Happy Valentine’s Day! 🌹💕

Mezzo-soprano star Kara Dugan, Mezzo- soprano and husband Peter Dugan Piano join us next Monday, Feb. 21, for our virtual ! 💻 🍷

A power couple in the music world, they’ll share music and chat about their intertwining lives in music and beyond. ✨

Free and open to everyone; just sign up here https://bit.ly/3rMQUuK and we’ll see you there! 💋

From the Top
MEET PETER: Pianist Peter Dugan's debut performances with Michael Tilson Thomas and the San Francisco Symphony were described by the Los Angeles Times as “stunning” and by the SF Chronicle as “fearlessly athletic.” He is heard across America as the host of NPR’s beloved program From the Top. He has appeared as a soloist, recitalist, and chamber musician across North America and abroad, and can be heard as the piano soloist on a new release of Ives’ Fourth Symphony from Tilson Thomas and the San Francisco Symphony. In 2020, he joined violinist Joshua Bell for At Home With Music, a national PBS broadcast and live album release on Sony Classical. A sought-after multi-genre artist, Mr. Dugan has performed in duos and trios with artists ranging from Itzhak Perlman and Renee Fleming to Jesse Colin Young and Glenn Close. The Wall Street Journal described Mr. Dugan’s collaboration with violinist Charles Yang as a “classical-meets-rockstar duo.” This season Yang and Dugan are Artists in Residence at New York’s Kaufman Music Center and the Cali School of Music at Montclair State University. Prizing stylistic versatility as the hallmark of a 21st century musician, Mr. Dugan is equally at home in classical, jazz, and pop idioms. Don't miss Peter in Love Stories at Mechanics' Hall on Valentine's Day! Only a few tickets remain, so get yours ASAP. This concert will sell out!!

📸 : Jacob Blickenstaff
One of our amazing guitar students, Eric Wang, was recently featured on NPR’s Instagram account with the non-profit organization, From the Top that celebrates stories of young classically-trained musicians.
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Check out the short reel video here! http://ow.ly/E6YB50HRhYS
Ellen Foreman won 1st place as a solo musician at our annual KPAC talent showcase in 2021. Now here she is being featured by NPR's From the Top! Way to go, Ellen!
Join us today for From the Top at 6PM to hear 15-year-old violinist Anagha Kapsi pull at our heart strings with an expressive performance of Chaconne by Tomaso Antonio Vitali! Also on the program, one of the strongest teenage piano trios in the country perform Beethoven.

https://weta.org/fm/features/top/teenage-piano-trio-beethoven-talented-young-vocalist
A jazzy piece from La La Land to bring us into the weekend. Check out her other pieces from this link: https://bit.ly/2WNLH99

https://youtu.be/1rXCuhdUSI4
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