© 2023 Hawaiʻi Public Radio
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
Available On Air Stations

HPR's Top 10 Classical Stars

Yo-Yo Ma, your #1 Classical Star! Photo credit: Todd Rosenberg/Sony Classical

Edit | Remove

For Hawai?i Public Radio’s 2019 Spring Fund Drive, listeners were invited to submit the names of their favorite classical music stars. The results were compiled and our classical music hosts, Gene Schiller, Craig De Silva, Howard Dicus, Sharene Taba and John Kalani Zak, wrote and produced brief vignettes on the life and music of the Top Ten.  We’re listing them here as they are revealed on HPR-2 during the ten-day drive.

10. Arthur Rubinstein - Pianist

Known as a risk taker, a model of technical refinement, and the greatest interpreter of Chopin, Arthur Rubinstein valued the element of surprise in his performances.

Voiced by Louise King Lanzilotti

9. Leonard Bernstein - Composer & Conductor

A conductor from the piano and mentor to many, Bernstein introduced the power of classical music to young and old alike.

Voiced by John Kalani Zak
Voiced by Gene Schiller

8. Joshua Bell - Violinist

You never know where you might encounter the violinist known to bring people to tears.

Voiced by Howard Dicus
Voiced by Craig DeSilva

7. Sir James Galway - Flute Player

This consummate entertainer was the first wind player ever to be knighted, and played with the HSO in November 2013.

Voiced by Ian Capps
Voiced by Judy Anderson

6. Renée Fleming - Opera Singer

Known as not "a" beautiful voice, but "the beautiful voice," Tony-nominated Reneé Fleming finds a world in each song she sings.

Voiced by Gene Schiller
Voiced by Craig DeSilva

5. Itzhak Perlman - Violinist

This virtuoso for the ages made his national debut on the Ed Sullivan Show.

Voiced by Gene Schiller
Voiced by Louise King Lanzilotti

4. Luciano Pavarotti - Opera Singer

This king of the high Cs (hardly "just another tenor") believed that a life in music is a life beautifully spent.

Voiced by Gene Schiller
Voiced by Sharene Keli?ipunilei Lum Taba

3. Martha Argerich - Pianist

At 77 years of age, "rock star" pianist Martha Argerich is still at the top of her game. 

Voiced by Howard Dicus
Voiced by Louise King Lanzilotti

2. JoAnn Falletta - Conductor

JoAnn Falletta is one of the world's most sought-after conductors not just because of her skill and talent, but also because of her wonderful personality.

Voiced by Judy Anderson
Voiced by Gene Schiller

1. Yo-Yo Ma - Cellist

Your favorite classical star believes that music helps us understand our environment, each other, and ourselves. 

Voiced by Ian Capps
Voiced by John Kalani Zak

More Episodes