The Great Composers dives deep into the lives behind some of the greatest music ever written. Host Karla Walker and conductor Scott O'Neil look at the world through the eyes of these gifted artists. Learn about obstacles they overcame, and their loves, losses, successes and failures. You'll feel you know Mozart, Rachmaninov and others as friends.

Latest Episodes

  • An intimate look at the life and legacy of a singular musical figure, featuring insights from conductor Marin Alsop. Bernstein was born Aug. 25, 1918, and classical music lovers across the world are marking the 100th anniversary of his birth this year. It's a chance to rediscover his most indelible compositions, connect with his lesser-known pieces and appreciate what a singular musical figure he was.
    Leonard Bernstein in 1955.
Leonard Bernstein in 1955.
  • Mozart's "The Magic Flute" marries high art with catchy tunes, and makes us wonder what the composer would have written if he had lived longer. It's the final of five episodes on Mozart, kicking off our new podcast The Great Composers. The series, hosted by Karla Walker and Scott O'Neil, offers an intimate look at some of history's greatest musical minds. Subscribe so you don't miss an episode.
    <p>Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart</p>
<p>Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart</p>
  • Mozart's popularity as a piano soloist begins to wane, so he adapts. In this fourth installment of The Great Composers, Mozart happily turns his focus to his first, true love: opera. Mozart writes “The Marriage of Figaro” and “Don Giovanni.” He also writes his three great, final symphonies in one summer. Listen and subscribe for more episodes hosted by Karla Walker and Scott O'Neil.
    <p>A portrait of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart.</p>
<p>A portrait of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart.</p>
  • After years of frustration, Mozart enjoys great success on the operatic stage and a meteoric rise in the Viennese artistic scene. He essentially reinvents the keyboard concerto in the process. He also breaks free from his Salzburg employer and his family -- and he marries Constanze Weber. It's the third of five episodes on Mozart, kicking off our new podcast The Great Composers. The series, hosted by Karla Walker and Scott O'Neil, offers an intimate look at some of history's greatest musical minds. Subscribe so you don't miss an episode.
    <p>A portrait of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart.</p>
<p>A portrait of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart.</p>
  • Mozart blossoms as an artist but struggles to fulfill the full measure of his potential. He’s already composed numerous symphonies and concertos. And his mother tirelessly supports his career, even as their travels around Europe cause her health to deteriorate. It's the second of five episodes on Mozart, kicking off our new podcast The Great Composers. The series, hosted by Karla Walker and Scott O'Neil, offers an intimate look at some of history's greatest musical minds. Subscribe so you don't miss an episode.
    <p>A painting of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart.</p>
<p>A painting of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart.</p>
  • A child is born in Salzburg with indescribable, incomprehensible talent for music and composition. Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart travels the world and rubs shoulders with the greatest composers in Europe, all by the age of 12. It's the first of five episodes on Mozart, kicking off our new podcast The Great Composers. The series, hosted by Karla Walker and Scott O'Neil, offers an intimate look at some of history's greatest musical minds. Subscribe so you don't miss an episode.
    <p>The young Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart.</p>
<p>The young Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart.</p>
  • It’s an intimate look at the people who wrote some of the greatest music ever. Subscribe and hear a preview.
    <p>Karla Walker and Scott O'Neil, hosts of "The Great Composers," in the CPR Performance Studio.</p>
<p>Karla Walker and Scott O'Neil, hosts of "The Great Composers," in the CPR Performance Studio.</p>
  • Senior Host & Assistant Program Director, The Great Composers