Anastasia Tsioulcas

Anastasia Tsioulcas is an Associate Producer for NPR Music. In this role she is responsible for producing, blogging and occasional reporting on classical and world music.

Tsioulcas is co-host of NPR's classical music blog, Deceptive Cadence, and also produces live concert webcasts, ranging from Member Station co-productions to other live concerts and special events, including Field Recordings and Tiny Desk Concerts, that she's helped curate and produce.

While here at NPR, Tsioulcas has produced, coordinated and reported on a variety of topics and initiatives including rallying a few hundred singers to Times Square for a "flash choir" to sing the world premiere of a new Philip Glass piece, commissioned by NPR Music. Tsioulcas also had the opportunity to speak with Pulitzer Prize-winning composer Steve Reich about his piece WTC 9/11 and she produced and co-hosted a live concert at (Le) Poisson Rouge with legendary conductor Daniel Barenboim and his West-Eastern Divan Orchestra, comprised of players from Israel and across the Arab world.

Prior to joining NPR in April 2011, she was widely published as a writer on both classical and world music, and was the former North America editor for Gramophone Magazine and the classical music columnist for Billboard. She has also been an on-air contributor to many public radio programs, including WNYC's Soundcheck, Minnesota Public Radio's The Savvy Traveler, Public Radio International's Weekend America, and the BBC's The World. As a world music journalist, she has reported from across north and western Africa, South Asia and Europe on the music and culture of those regions.

Born in Boston, Tsioulcas was trained from an early age as a Western classical violinist and violist. She holds a BA from Barnard College, Columbia University in comparative religion.

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Deceptive Cadence
8:23 pm
Thu April 9, 2015

Twitter Outrage Takes Toronto, Canceling Two Pianists

Pianist Valentina Lisitsa
Gilbert Francois Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Fri April 10, 2015 12:20 pm

Valentina Lisitsa is a pianist whose worldwide reputation was built on social media. She is now experiencing a major backlash due to what she's been writing on Twitter.

It came to a head with the cancellation of Lisitsa's scheduled performances Wednesday night and Thursday night with the Toronto Symphony Orchestra, which announced earlier this week that she would not be appearing to play Rachmaninoff's Piano Concerto No. 2 with the ensemble and Finnish conductor Juka-Pekka Saraste. Both TSO management and Lisitsa have said she will still receive her full fee.

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Deceptive Cadence
1:28 pm
Wed April 1, 2015

Hilary Hahn Marches Through Mozart

Violinist Hilary Hahn.
Michael Patrick O'Leary Courtesy of the artist

When you're all grown up, you — at least theoretically — put away childish things. But there are exceptions, as violinist Hilary Hahn proves in her latest recording project.

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All Songs TV
11:50 am
Wed April 1, 2015

Stromae, 'Carmen'

Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Wed April 1, 2015 12:23 pm

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Music
11:41 am
Mon March 30, 2015

Latitudes: The International Music You Must Hear Now

The Romanian band Taraf de Haïdouks returns, rebooted, to celebrate its 25th anniversary.
Kamil Ornarowicz Courtesy of the artists

Originally published on Tue March 31, 2015 1:56 pm

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Deceptive Cadence
10:13 am
Wed March 25, 2015

Cross The Arctic With The Kronos Quartet

The Kronos Quartet.
Jay Blakesberg Courtesy of the artists

Originally published on Tue April 7, 2015 2:49 pm

Dogs barking, wind howling, ice crunching, then the sudden "ch-ch-ch-ch" of a sawing beat: That's composer Derek Charke's opening salvo in his transporting piece Cercle du Nord III.

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Songs We Love
9:55 am
Mon March 23, 2015

Tal National Brings The Joy On 'Zoy Zoy'

Tal National, the most popular band in the West African country of Niger.
Jason Creps Courtesy of the artists

Just as we hit springtime (finally!), I think I've found the happiest song to greet the season. It comes courtesy of Tal National, a band from the West African country of Niger. This rollicking track is called "Zoy Zoy," which is also the name of their new album.

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Music Articles
5:22 am
Sun March 22, 2015

Deep In The Heart Of Texas, Muslim Music Blossoms

Riyaaz Qawwali performed at New York's globalFEST music festival in January.
Ebru Yildiz for NPR

Originally published on Sun March 22, 2015 8:19 am

The eyes of the pop music world are on Austin, Texas this week. Thousands of bands and fans have descended upon the city for the South by Southwest music festival. Austin is also home to its own music scene year-round — and one of its more unusual groups is tapping into a sound that has nothing to do with indie rock or hip-hop. They're called Riyaaz Qawwali.

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First Listen
10:03 pm
Sun March 15, 2015

Review: Buena Vista Social Club, 'Lost And Found'

Buena Vista Social Club's new album, Lost And Found, comes out March 24.
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Tue March 24, 2015 1:31 pm

It was nearly 20 years ago, back in 1997, that the Buena Vista Social Club became an improbable worldwide sensation: a group of mainly elderly (and some younger) Cuban musicians, performing traditional son music for an album produced by Ry Cooder.

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Deceptive Cadence
7:03 am
Wed March 11, 2015

Let Ethan Hawke Introduce You To A Fine, Forgotten Pianist

Pianist Seymour Bernstein in conversation with actor and filmmaker Ethan Hawke.
Courtesy of IFC Films/Sundance Selects

Originally published on Wed March 11, 2015 10:15 am

Ethan Hawke might strike you as an unlikely guide to classical music. But in directing his first documentary, Seymour: An Introduction, he created an intriguing and ultimately profoundly moving tribute to a largely unknown artist, 86-year-old pianist Seymour Bernstein.

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Deceptive Cadence
3:29 pm
Fri March 6, 2015

Saying Goodbye To A Manhattan Classical Music Mecca

Owner Heidi Rogers Tuesday at her famous Manhattan shop, Frank Music Company, before the store's final closing Friday. Judging silently from on high is composer Igor Stravinsky.
Anastasia Tsioulcas NPR

Originally published on Fri March 6, 2015 6:04 pm

There's a kind of little village of artisans on Manhattan's West 54th Street. In a couple of plain looking office towers, there are a bunch of rehearsal studios, violin makers' workshops and other music businesses. Behind one of those office doors on the 10th floor sits Frank Music Company — Frank's, as everybody calls it.

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Deceptive Cadence
11:08 pm
Thu March 5, 2015

Young Composer's Work Dropped For Nazi Melody

21-year-old Estonian-American composer Jonas Tarm.
Elena Snow Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Sun March 8, 2015 7:28 am

It was supposed to be a celebratory occasion, a high-profile performance of a piece given life by the orchestra that commissioned it — a young composer's music played by other young musicians.

Instead, the performance scheduled for Sunday of Jonas Tarm's music at Carnegie Hall by the highly regarded New York Youth Symphony (NYYS) has been canceled after it came to the attention of the ensemble's administration that the piece contains a quotation from the Nazi "Horst Wessel Lied."

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Music Articles
7:03 am
Wed March 4, 2015

Latitudes: The Film 'The Last Song Before The War'

Members of the Tuareg band Tartit at Mali's Festival of the Desert in 2011.
Courtesy of Kiley Kraskouskas

Originally published on Thu March 12, 2015 7:39 am

One of the best recently released music documentaries — The Last Song Before The War — wasn't originally supposed to be about music.

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Deceptive Cadence
3:52 pm
Tue February 24, 2015

Podium Diplomacy: Conductor Takes Chinese Music West And Vice Versa

Chinese conductor Long Yu.
P.A.D. Studio Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Wed February 25, 2015 1:40 pm

By some measures, China is now the world's largest economy. It's also a gigantic market for American brands, from Hollywood blockbusters to KFC and Pizza Hut. But one Chinese conductor, Long Yu, would like these cultures to hear each other a little more clearly. He's launching a new project to do just that, and it's starting tonight with the New York Philharmonic.

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First Listen
10:03 pm
Sun February 8, 2015

First Listen: Ibeyi, 'Ibeyi'

Ibeyi's self-titled debut album comes out Feb. 17.
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Tue February 17, 2015 8:43 am

I fell hard for the 20-year-old twin sisters of Ibeyi last summer, when they released the entrancing, unsettling video for their single "River." The way that Lisa-Kainde and Naomi Diaz mixed deep soul with Afro-Cuban tradition and electronic textures resulted in one of the best new cuts I'd heard in ages. Ever since, I've eagerly awaited their self-titled full-length debut — and that impatience has been rewarded.

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Deceptive Cadence
1:15 pm
Fri February 6, 2015

A Friday Surprise: Alan Gilbert Will Leave The New York Philharmonic

Alan Gilbert, music director of the New York Philharmonic, has announced he will step down in 2017.
Chris Lee New York Philharmonic

Originally published on Fri February 6, 2015 6:45 pm

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Deceptive Cadence
11:45 am
Mon February 2, 2015

Aldo Ciccolini, An Italian Pianist With A French Soul, Dies At Age 89

Italian-born pianist Aldo Ciccolini was closely associated with French music. He died this weekend at age 89.
Sabine Weiss Courtesy of the artist

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Music Articles
12:18 pm
Thu January 29, 2015

Latitudes: The Global Music You Must Hear In January

Indo-Canadian singer Kiran Ahluwalia.
Sahiba Kaur Chawla Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Thu January 29, 2015 12:51 pm

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The Record
12:09 pm
Mon January 26, 2015

From Prog-Rock Pioneer To Kitsch King: Remembering Demis Roussos

International pop star Demis Roussos hams it up for the camera at the Cannes Film Festival in May 1975. Roussos died in Athens Sunday at age 68.
Ralph Gatti AFP/Getty Images

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First Listen
10:03 pm
Sun January 4, 2015

First Listen: Anonymous 4, '1865'

Anonymous 4's new album, 1865, comes out Jan. 13.
Dario Acosta Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Thu April 2, 2015 10:45 am

Four a cappella voices making divine music: This has been the heart of Anonymous 4's mission for nearly three decades. And as the group bids farewell this season, they're saying goodbye in a poignant way — with the release of an album that couldn't feel more timely. It commemorates the 150th anniversary of the end of the Civil War and the beginning of Reconstruction.

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Deceptive Cadence
10:03 am
Mon December 1, 2014

What's Your Top 100 Of The Last 100 Years?

Composer Steve Reich, whose Music for 18 Musicians pulled out ahead of Gershwin, Shostakovich, Bartok, Ives, Berg and all others in last year's Q2 poll.
Wonge Bergmann Courtesy of the artist

For the past few years, member station Q2 in New York City has been enlisting listeners in a thought-provoking year-end poll. Forget the best music of the last year — what are the very best compositions of the last century?

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Music News
2:02 pm
Wed November 26, 2014

Remembering Sabah, An Iconic And Thoroughly Unconventional Arab Star

Lebanese singer Sabah in a 2008 photo from Lebanon.
Anwar Amro AFP/Getty Images

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Music
10:32 am
Wed November 26, 2014

Celebrate Some Of The Year's Best New Releases With Q2

Grammy-winning violist Kim Kashkashian, who plays in the chamber ensemble Tre Voci.
Steve Riskind Courtesy of the artist

What's some of the most exciting music from 2014?

Find out with our member station Q2 Music, which is hosting an evening dedicated to three important album releases from the year nearly past. The concert takes place at The Greene Space in New York on Dec. 2 at 7 PM.

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Deceptive Cadence
11:20 am
Thu November 20, 2014

Musicians' Brains Really Do Work Differently — In A Good Way

Brains have a "full-body" workout when their owners play music.
TED-Ed

"Did you know that every time musicians pick up their instruments, there are fireworks going off all over their brain?"

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Deceptive Cadence
3:47 pm
Mon November 17, 2014

Uncovering The Heart Of Chopin — Literally

Composer and pianist Frederic Chopin, who died in 1849.
General Photographic Agency Getty Images

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Deceptive Cadence
3:39 pm
Wed October 29, 2014

Just Who Is This Opera Star Singing At The World Series Tonight?

Mezzo-soprano Joyce DiDonato, who is singing the national anthem at Game 7 of the World Series tonight in Kansas City, Mo.
Simon Pauly Courtesy of the artist

Maybe this trajectory mirrors the Kansas City Royals' unlikely road to the pennant: An opera star beats out much more mainstream artists to sing the national anthem at the decisive World Series Game 7.

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Music
7:18 am
Wed October 29, 2014

Latitudes: 10 Musical Discoveries From Around The World

Galician singer Davide Salvado enchanted the audience at his WOMEX showcase in Santiago de COmpostela, Spain in October 2014.
Anastasia Tsioulcas/NPR

Originally published on Mon November 10, 2014 6:08 pm

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Carnegie Hall Live
3:24 pm
Wed October 1, 2014

András Schiff Plays Mozart, Haydn, Schubert And Beethoven At Carnegie Hall

András Schiff takes late sonatas by Haydn, Mozart, Beethoven and Schubert to Carnegie Hall.
AJ Wilhelm for NPR

Originally published on Wed March 11, 2015 1:05 pm

András Schiff can come across as one of classical piano's deepest-dyed traditionalists.

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Music Articles
3:57 pm
Tue September 30, 2014

Latitudes: 50 Years Of Nonesuch, 10 Essential Recordings

Senegalese superstar singer Youssou N'Dour performs in Lagos, Nigeria in 2009.
Pius Utomi Ekpei AFP/Getty Images

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Deceptive Cadence
3:07 pm
Wed September 24, 2014

Remembering Christopher Hogwood, An Evangelist For Early Music

The late conductor, keyboard player and scholar Christopher Hogwood.
Marco Borggreve Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Thu December 18, 2014 2:37 pm

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