Listen to iconic masterpieces with new ears as NPR & PBS music commentator, conductor, composer, author and pianist Rob Kapilow shows you what you've been missing!
Featuring the Aeolus Quartet
Antonín Dvořák came to America in 1892 to head the newly-formed American Conservatory of Music, ushering in an extraordinarily fruitful period of creativity that included the triumphant New World Symphony and his Cello Concerto in B minor. In the idyllic surroundings of a small Iowa town, he wrote what would become one of chamber music’s most popular pieces in just 16 days: The String Quartet in F major, nicknamed the "American Quartet." Fascinated with African-American and Native-American music, Dvořák absorbed the spirit of America’s folk melodies into his work and advocated for an American composition school based on the country’s own indigenous music. Rob Kapilow and the Aeolus Quartet explore the difference between influence and imitation as they investigate what makes the American Quartet “American.” Rob Kapilow reveals the origins of What Makes It Great?