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NOW HEAR THIS On GREAT PERFORMANCES

Airs Fridays, Sept. 20 - Oct. 11, 2019 at 9 p.m. on KPBS 2

NOW HEAR THIS host Scott Yoo in the first episode of the miniseries, “Vivaldi...

Credit: Courtesy of E.J. Enríquez

Above: NOW HEAR THIS host Scott Yoo in the first episode of the miniseries, “Vivaldi: Something Completely Different,” on GREAT PERFORMANCES.

Travel Across Europe on a Journey of Musical Discovery with the New Miniseries

Join Scott Yoo, renowned violinist and conductor of the Mexico City Philharmonic, in NOW HEAR THIS, a new four-part documentary miniseries presented by GREAT PERFORMANCES that merges music, storytelling, travel and culture, as he chases the secret histories of some of the greatest music ever written.

Throughout the series, Scott Yoo meets and collaborates with world-renowned virtuosos, local musical heroes across many genres, artisan instrument makers, music historians and other charismatic characters on his travels through Italy, France, Germany, Spain and Morocco.

He visits legendary concert halls, architectural masterworks, jazz jam sessions and never-before-filmed archives to connect the classics to the contemporary – finding time to explore and enjoy the culture along the way.

Each episode focuses on a great composer, tracing the creation of their masterpieces and the profound, lasting cultural impact of their music, while exploring little known or recently discovered works and new music they inspired.

Trailer | Now Hear This

Join Scott Yoo, renowned violinist and conductor of the Mexico City Philharmonic, in NOW HEAR THIS, a new four-part documentary miniseries presented by GREAT PERFORMANCES that merges music, storytelling, travel and culture, as he chases the secret histories of some of the greatest music ever written.

EPISODE GUIDE:

NOW HEAR THIS: “Vivaldi: Something Completely Different” airs Friday, Sept. 20 at 9 p.m. on KPBS 2 - In the series premiere, Scott Yoo crosses Northern Italy, chasing the story of one of the most recorded pieces of music in the world, Vivaldi’s “The Four Seasons,” and discovers how the composer merged religious melodies, opera and a new level of violin playing to launch a new era of music. On the journey, Yoo discovers a new Vivaldi work, his connection to Stradivarius, a trove of original manuscripts and how Vivaldi’s music was almost lost to history.

Vivaldi: Something Completely Different | Preview

In the series premiere, Scott Yoo crosses Northern Italy, chasing the story of one of the most recorded pieces of music in the world, Vivaldi’s “The Four Seasons,” and discovers how the composer merged religious melodies, opera and a new level of violin playing to launch a new era of music. On the journey, Yoo discovers a new Vivaldi work and his connection to Stradivarius.

NOW HEAR THIS: “The Riddle of Bach” airs Friday, Sept. 27 at 9 p.m. on KPBS 2 - Travel to Germany and France to explore Bach's sonatas and partitas for solo violin. Maestro Scott Yoo and his wife, leading flutist Alice Dade, discover a melodic similarity with Vivaldi and a riddle hidden in Bach's portrait.

The Riddle of Bach | Preview

Scott Yoo goes to Germany to learn Bach’s sonatas and partitas, widely considered among the greatest works ever written for solo violin. There, Yoo discovers a riddle Bach left behind in his portrait. In trying to solve it, Yoo and his wife, leading flutist Alice Dade, discover that Bach based his melodic style on Vivaldi and his rhythms on the music of the French court.

NOW HEAR THIS: “Scarlatti: Man Out of Time” airs Friday, Oct. 4 at 9 p.m. on KPBS 2 - Journey to Spain and Morocco with host Scott Yoo to discover how composer Scarlatti melded aspects of Vivaldi's and Bach's work with music and dance of the region to generate a new sound inspired by the guitar that is still relevant today.

Scarlatti: Man Out of Time | Preview

Join Scott Yoo in Spain and Morocco to discover the greatest composer you’ve never heard of: Domenico Scarlatti. He was the finest keyboard player in Europe, hired by the Queen of Spain as her personal instructor. Into Vivaldi’s melodies and Bach’s fugues, Scarlatti incorporated the sounds of Spain – Moorish, Jewish, Gypsy, folk, dance and guitar – to create a new musical language.

NOW HEAR THIS: Handel: “Italian Style” airs Friday, Oct. 11 at 9 p.m. on KPBS 2 - Discover how Handel's experience in Italy with fellow composers Vivaldi, Scarlatti and Corelli influenced his career. Host Scott Yoo traces Handel's footsteps to understand how he embraced the country's artistic and cultural traditions.

Handel: Italian Style | Preview

Before becoming the most famous composer of his time, Handel gained a lifetime of experience in Italy. Welcomed by wealthy patrons, he traveled with the Scarlatti family and learned from Corelli and the masters of the Italian Style. Yoo returns to Italy to follow in Handel’s footsteps, taking in the art, architecture, fashion, food, wine, light and landscape.

“For years I’ve wanted to share the amazing stories behind our most celebrated music with a wider audience,” said Host and Executive Producer Scott Yoo. “With Now Hear This, I can finally bring viewers to the musical capitals of Europe on spectacular journeys of discovery. It’s fitting that great music, great travel and great stories at last come together on GREAT PERFORMANCES.”

Photo credit: Courtesy of Scott Yoo

Scenic view of Bologna, Italy from “Handel: Italian Style,” the final episode of the miniseries NOW HEAR THIS on GREAT PERFORMANCES.

Watch On Your Schedule:

Episodes will be available for streaming on demand for a limited time after the broadcast. Extend your viewing window with KPBS Passport, video streaming for members supporting KPBS at $60 or more yearly, using your computer, smartphone, tablet, Roku, AppleTV, Amazon Fire or Chromecast. Learn how to activate your benefit now.

Join The Conversation:

GREAT PERFORMANCES is on Facebook, and you can follow @GPerfPBS on Twitter. #GreatPerformancesPBS

Credits:

The series was created by producer, writer and director Harry Lynch and is a production of Arcos Film + Music. Harry Lynch, Scott Yoo, Marion Lear Swaybill and Richard Lim are executive producers. GREAT PERFORMANCES is produced by THIRTEEN Productions LLC for WNET, one of America’s most prolific and respected public media providers. Bill O’Donnell is series producer and Bill O’Donnell is executive producer.

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