Sarah’s Music
Contemporary Classical - Season 2
Television magazine show
Presenter: Sarah Willis
Editorial department: Simone Lauenstein / Martin Roddewig / Mikko Stübner / Reiner Schild
Length: 26 x 12 min.
© 2015, a BFMI Production for DW-TV
“Sarah’s Mu­sic - Con­tem­por­ary Clas­sic­al” is ded­ic­ated to the rich di­versity of clas­sic­al mu­sic. In each edi­tion of the weekly pro­gram, broad­cast in Eng­lish and Ger­man, presenter Sarah Wil­lis presents con­cert high­lights, goes be­hind the scenes at top events and gets up close and per­son­al with her star guests and their in­stru­ments.

Sarah’s Mu­sic 1: 07.02.2015
Moz­art and Horses

In the first Sarah´s Mu­sic epis­ode of 2015, Sarah at­tends the Moz­art Week in Salzburg. One of this year´s high­lights is a cho­reo­graphed per­form­ance for horses to the mu­sic of Moz­art´s can­tata “Dav­ide Pen­it­ente". This spe­cial event takes place in the fam­ous Salzburg Felsen­reit­schule with horses from the Ver­sailles Academy of Eques­tri­an Arts and is con­duc­ted by Marc Minkowski.

Sarah’s Mu­sic 2: 14.02.2015
The Double Reed Club

Sarah meets up with her Ber­lin Phil­har­mon­ic wood­wind col­leagues to talk about be­ing mem­bers of the “Double Reed Club”. They have a spe­cial stand­ing in the or­ches­tra be­cause they have to make their own reeds and this in­volves a lot of work - they are con­stantly scrap­ing and whit­tling. Find out how in this epis­ode!

Sarah’s Mu­sic 3: 21.02.2015
The Per­fect Take

Sarah vis­its the fam­ous Tel­dex re­cord­ing stu­dio in Ber­lin where all kinds of mu­sic is re­cor­ded- from pop to clas­sic­al. She also talks to two world class re­cord­ing en­gin­eers, Friedemann Englebrecht and René Möller, about how mu­sic is re­cor­ded and what the chal­lenges are today in our di­git­al world.

Sarah’s Mu­sic 4: 28.02.2015
The Labèque Sis­ters

Sarah goes to Par­is to meet the fam­ous pi­ano duo Ka­tia and Mar­i­elle Labèque. The two french sis­ters have been play­ing to­geth­er since child­hood and have had an in­cred­ible ca­reer, in­spir­ing many com­posers to write pieces es­pe­cially for them. Sarah talks to Ka­tia and Mar­i­elle whilst they pre­pare for a con­cert in the new con­cert hall in the “Mais­on de la Ra­dio” and will be find­ing out what is the secret to their last­ing suc­cess.

Sarah’s Mu­sic 5: 14.03.2015
How to get to Carne­gie Hall

The fam­ous say­ing goes: "How do you get to Carne­gie Hall? Prac­tice, prac­tice, prac­tice!” In this epis­ode of Sarah´s Mu­sic, Sarah and the team are in New York and are ex­plor­ing the Carne­gie Hall to find out why this con­cert hall is con­sidered one of the best in the world and why you have to prac­tice prac­tice prac­tice to get there. Sarah talks to the Nor­we­gi­an pi­an­ist, Leif Ove Andsnes about why Carne­gie´s acous­tic is so fant­ast­ic and Sir Clive Gillin­son, the head of ex­ec­ut­ive and ad­min­is­trat­ive plan­ning about the his­tory of the hall. Jeremy Gef­fen adds his in­sider stor­ies and there will be some Beeth­oven from Leif Ove Andsnes and the Mahler Cham­ber Or­ches­tra.

Sarah’s Mu­sic 6: 21.03.2015
Hip-Hop & Horn

The Res­nick Edu­ca­tion Wing is Carne­gie Hall´s state­ment to the world of how im­port­ant mu­sic edu­ca­tion is to them. It was opened in 2014 and is the home to many edu­ca­tion pro­grams offered by the Weil Mu­sic In­sti­tute. In this epis­ode of Sarah´s Mu­sic, Sarah is in­vited to take part in a work­shop for young people who are learn­ing about di­git­al mu­sic pro­duc­tion.

Sarah’s Mu­sic 7: 04.04.2015
The 21C Me­dia Group

In this epis­ode of Sarah´s Mu­sic, Sarah vis­its the of­fices of the en­er­get­ic 21C Me­dia Group in New York to find out the dif­fer­ent ways clas­sic­al mu­sic can be pro­moted today in our di­git­al world. 21C Me­dia is a cut­ting edge com­pany whose mis­sion is “ to help artists and or­gan­iz­a­tions em­brace and har­ness the tech­no­lo­gic­al and cul­tur­al op­por­tun­it­ies af­forded by the 21st cen­tury”. A fas­cin­at­ing day! 21C provides ad­vice to a star-stud­ded list of cli­ents: among them Span­ish ten­or and con­duct­or Plácido Domin­go as well as Brit­ish vi­ol­in­ist Daniel Hope. The mar­ket­ing spe­cial­ists re­veal what’s im­port­ant when clas­sic­al artists use web­sites, Face­book and Twit­ter.

Sarah’s Mu­sic 8: 11.04.2015
A Day at the MET

In this epis­ode of Sarah´s Mu­sic, Sarah spends a day at the Met­ro­pol­it­an Op­era House in New York. Known as the “Met”, this op­era house is one of the most fam­ous and cer­tainly the largest op­era house in the world. It boasts the very best sing­ers in the world, a won­der­ful acous­tic and with their “Met live in HD” cinema broad­casts, they reach audi­ences world­wide. Here Sarah is in­vited to sit in on a re­hears­al of Massen­et´s op­era “Man­on” with Di­ana Dam­rau and Vit­torio Grigolo in the main roles. She meets the Gen­er­al Man­ager of the Met, Peter Gelb, talks to the horn sec­tion in the pit, ex­plores back­stage and even shows us where the very best acous­tic is...

Sarah’s Mu­sic 9: 25.04.2015
Mu­sic and Sci­ence

Sarah and the team go to the Max Planck In­sti­tute in Göttin­gen, Ger­many to meet sci­ent­ists who are us­ing the latest MRI and Mo­tion Cap­ture meth­ods to find out ex­actly what goes on in­side a mu­si­cian´s body whilst play­ing an in­stru­ment. Sarah talks to kin­esi­ology pro­fess­or Peter Ilt­is, head of the MRI de­part­ment in Göttin­gen, Prof. Jens Frahm and mo­tion cap­ture spe­cial­ist Er­win Schoon­der­waldt. She then vo­lun­teers to play the horn in the MRI cham­ber.

Sarah’s Mu­sic 10: 09.05.2015
Hanging Out With Håkan Harden­ber­ger

The Swedish trum­pet so­loist, Håkan Harden­ber­ger, re­ceived his first trum­pet aged 8 and hasn´t looked back since. On this epis­ode of Sarah´s Mu­sic, Sarah meets him in Ber­lin, where he is play­ing a con­certo with the Ber­lin Phil­har­mon­ic con­duc­ted by An­dris Nel­sons. In between re­hears­als, he and Sarah hold a live “Horn Hangout” to in­ter­act with his fans all over the world and he also finds time to play for her over the rooftops of Ber­lin. Håkan had his own ideas for this epis­ode´s Horn Chal­lenge, don’t miss this one!

Sarah’s Mu­sic 11: 16.05.2015
Fun­drais­ing with Mu­sic

In this epis­ode Sarah re­ports on a big fun­drais­ing event in Bonn - the 4th Ger­man AIDS-Found­a­tion Op­era Gala. 11 in­ter­na­tion­al op­era sing­ers will per­form, ac­com­pan­ied by the Beeth­oven Or­ches­tra Bonn and the Choir of the Bonn Theat­er. All the pro­ceeds of course go to this good cause and the Gala is sponsored by the Deutsche Welle. How does clas­sic­al mu­sic in­spire fun­drais­ing? Sarah Wil­lis speaks to Ul­rich Heide of the Ger­man AIDS-Found­a­tion and to An­dreas Hartwig who or­gan­izes this an­nu­al char­ity event.

Sarah’s Mu­sic 12: 30.05.2015
Groov­ing with Gru­binger

Sarah is in Vi­enna to meet Mar­tin Gru­binger, the 'multi-per­cus­sion­ist' star who is per­form­ing live at the Euro­vi­sion Song Con­test 2015. Mar­tin and his band, The Per­cuss­ive Plan­et, are Aus­tria's choice for the In­ter­val Act for Euro­vi­sion and he in­vited Sarah to take part with him. Of course Sarah said yes and you can see what it was like to be part of such a le­gendary event and find out all about Mar­tin Gru­binger in this epis­ode of Sarah's Mu­sic!

Sarah’s Mu­sic 13: 13.06.2015
Singing is for Every­one!

The Ber­lin Ra­dio Choir and their cha­ris­mat­ic prin­cip­al con­duct­or Si­mon Hal­sey hold a 'Sing-along Con­cert' every year. These con­certs are ex­tremely pop­u­lar and 1300 am­a­teur sing­ers come from all over the world to join in. This year, Sarah joins the am­a­teurs - singing sop­rano in the Verdi Re­quiem at the Ber­lin Phil­har­monie. She also finds out from the mem­bers of the Ber­lin Ra­dio Choir what it is like to sing in a pro­fes­sion­al choir and asks Si­mon Hal­sey just why singing is for every­one.

Sarah’s Mu­sic 14: 26.06.2015
Mu­sic on the Brain

Romantic mu­sic, scary mu­sic, relaxing mu­sic - mu­sic af­fects us all in one way or an­oth­er, and is ap­par­ently very good for us! Sarah finds out how and why in this episode of Sarah´s Mu­sic with the help of one of the world´s leading experts in how the brain perceives and anal­yses mu­sic, Dr. Eckart Al­tenmüller. She also dons a rather attractive cap and watches how her own brain plays Mozart.

Sarah’s Mu­sic 15: 10.07.2015
Bach to the Roots

The fa­mous portrait of the compos­er Johann Sebas­tian Bach comes home to Leipzig af­ter trav­el­ing around the world for 265 years. Sarah is there for this special event. The world's leading Bach specialist, Sir John Eliot Gar­diner, tells Sarah Willis about his special relation­ship to the portrait.

Sarah’s Mu­sic 16: 25.07.2015
A Day with Avi Avital

Sarah spends the day with the Israeli mu­sician Avi Avital and his mandolin. They trav­el through Berlin in a rickshaw, hold a `plucked in­stru­ments picnic´ and Avi convinces techno-mu­sic lovers that the mandolin is a re­ally cool in­stru­ment.

Sarah’s Mu­sic 17: 07.08.2015
The Pa­cif­ic Mu­sic Fes­tival

Horn star Sarah Willis is in Sapporo, Japan for the 2015 Pa­cif­ic Mu­sic Fes­tival. This in­spiring and ed­ucational mu­sic fes­tival was founded by the leg­endary Leonard Bernstein in 2001 and this year in­volves 78 young mu­sicians from 23 countries, who have all won their place in the or­chestra through on­line au­ditions – and the mentors/teach­ers come from some of the best or­chestras in the world.

Sarah’s Mu­sic 18: 29.08.2015
The Aus­tralian World Or­chestra

For this episode, Sarah is in Sydney, Aus­tralia, where some of Aus­tralia´s top classical mu­sicians from home and abroad are perform­ing as part of the unique Aus­tralian World Or­chestra - con­ducted for these concerts by Sir Si­mon Rat­tle.

Sarah’s Mu­sic 19: 19.09.2015
Beethoven for Kids!

Beethoven is for all ages as we see in this episode which is especially for Sarah´s younger viewers. She vis­its his birthplace of Ludwig van Beethoven in Bonn with some friends and shows us excerpts from one of her chil­dren´s concerts.

Sarah’s Mu­sic 20: 03.10.2015
The Magic of Chamber Mu­sic

In this episode of Sarah´s Mu­sic, Sarah talks to star mu­sicians Sol Gabetta and Daish­in Kashimoto at this year´s Beethovenfest in Bonn about what makes classical chamber mu­sic so magical- for the mu­sicians and the au­di­ence!

Sarah’s Mu­sic 21: 17.10.2015
Mit­tendrin – At the Heart of an Or­chestra

Find out in this episode of Sarah´s Mu­sic what it feels and sounds like to expe­ri­ence a concert at the heart of the or­chestra. The `Mit­tendrin´ ('right in the mid­dle') concert se­ries at the Konzerthaus in Berlin show us exactly that!

Sarah’s Mu­sic 22: 31.10.2015
The Horn: In­stru­ment of the Year 2015

Sarah's be­loved in­stru­ment, the French Horn, is Germany's In­stru­ment of the Year. In this episode she shows how the ani­mal horn evolved to the concert stage in­stru­ment - with help of a rhino and 70 horn players.!

Sarah’s Mu­sic 23: 14.11.2015
All That Jazz…

Sarah spends the day backstage at Chicago the Mu­sical at the The­ater des West­ens in Berlin. She meets the cast and mu­sicians and finds out how a mu­sical the­ater pre­pares to perform one of the most successful mu­sicals of all time.

Sarah’s Mu­sic 24: 28.11.2015
1, 2 and maybe 3: The Vi­ennese Waltz

Sarah is in Vi­enna to discover the secrets of the Vi­ennese Waltz. Expert dance in­structor Thomas Schäfer-Elmayer sweeps her off her feet and live waltzes are pro­vided by the wonderful en­semble The Philharmon­ics.

Sarah’s Mu­sic 25: 12.12.2015
Sarah’s Christmas Mu­sic: The Nutcracker

Sarah Willis spends a day at the Deutsche Op­er in Berlin watch­ing the re­hearsals for ev­eryone´s favou­rite Christmas bal­let, the Nutcracker. She meets the choreog­ra­phers, the dancers, the Nutcracker and a couple of mice…

Sarah’s Mu­sic 26: 26.12.2015
Mu­sic Mo­ments

Berlin / Salzburg / New York / Vi­enna / Sydney 2014-15 Placido Domingo, Avi Avital, Mar­tin Grubinger, Ivan Fis­ch­er, Sir Si­mon Rat­tle - Af­ter 31 episodes, Sarah delves into the Sarah´s Mu­sic archives with ed­itor Kevin to find and share some of her favou­rite mo­ments so far. But how to choose? There are so many! See which mo­ments she se­lects in this special episode.


We have also produced the 1st Season with 6 episodes:
Sarah’s Mu­sic - Contemporary Classical - Season 1

Currently we are producing 26 new episodes:
Sarah’s Mu­sic - Contemporary Classical - Season 3