Brian McCreath

Host & Digital Producer

Brian McCreath produces WCRB’s Boston Symphony Orchestra broadcasts, produces and hosts both The Bach Hour and The Answered Question (an interview podcast), and supervises digital content production for classicalwcrb.org. He came to WGBH from a diverse background in music. With degrees in trumpet performance from the New England Conservatory and The College of Wooster, he spent several years as a musician, including two years with the Symphony Orchestra of the State of Mexico and five years as Principal Trumpet of the Milwaukee Ballet Orchestra. Ideas about the business of music, combined with an entrepreneurial spirit, led him into artist management in 2000, and radio wasn’t far behind. He worked on the production team for the talk shows of Wisconsin Public Radio's Ideas Network in Milwaukee before moving to Boston in 2001. Three years later he joined the classical music production staff of WGBH. Since then, in addition to those noted previously, his roles have included programming and hosting weekend mornings and weekday afternoons, and production and hosting of live concert broadcasts presented by the Handel and Haydn Society, Rockport Music, the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum and others.

Bach's B minor x 4

Mar 2, 2017
clockwise, from upper right: portrait by E.G. Haussmann (1748); portrait by J.E. Rentsch (c. 1715); statue by C. Seffner (1908); forensic reconstruction by Caroline Wilkinson (2008)
Wikimedia Commons

Last weekend I spent a lot of time with Bach. Over the last four and a half months, I’ve spent a lot of time with Bach. “But you produce a show called The Bach Hour. Of course you’ve spent a lot of time with Bach!”

 

Yes, well, there is that. But this has been exceptional. Being at four different performances of Bach’s Mass in B minor since October has left me with two takeaways, one of them expected, the other unexpected. Neither takeaway is the, dare I say, cliché, “I heard things in the Mass I had never heard before.”

Symphony Hall, Boston, and Leipzig Gewandhaus
Stu Rosner (Symphony Hall), Jens Gerber (Gewandhaus) / BSO, GWO

The Boston Symphony Orchestra has announced new details about its alliance with the Gewandhaus Orchestra of Leipzig, beginning in the 2017-2018 season.

Bach
Portrait by E.G. Hausmann / Wikimedia Commons

I just listened to a podcast interview with a former CIA analyst who said, “It’s not uncommon for an analyst to get a bit obsessed with his quarry.” Boy do I know it.

artist rendering of new building complex at Tanglewood
BSO

The Boston Symphony Orchestra has announced two major investments in its summer home in the Berkshires, including a new building project and the establishment of the Tanglewood Learning Institute.

manuscript of the Kyrie of Bach's Mass in B minor
Wikimedia Commons

When we learned that the 2016-2017 concert season in Boston would include no fewer than four major presentations of J.S. Bach’s Mass in B minor, it seemed almost like too much of a good thing. Almost.

In fact, the opposite has been true, from my perspective anyway. After two of those four performances, the familiarity of the music isn’t what stands out to me. It’s the vast differences in approach that make each performance a new event.

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