Allan Kelly

Program Host

Allan Kelly is host of Distant Mirror which airs Fridays at 10 pm.

Allan has been hosting Distant Mirror since 1992. His interest in classical music goes back to the early seventies when he worked an overnight shift at KWAV in Monterey, California while attending UC Santa Cruz by day studying medieval and Renaissance history.  During his air shift he would play much early music which seemed to provide a perfect ambience for study. His program director, who was also a cellist in the local orchestra, became a good friend and mentor.

In 1976 he received his Masters in Medieval/Renaissance studies from Rutgers University and went on to teach Western civ courses for a short time at Spartanburg College in South Carolina. He has worked nearly every musical format over the years, including a ten-year gig at WSSH in Boston. But classical music has always been his format of choice and in the nineties when he began here at WWFM he was at long last able to combine his love of medieval/Renaissance history with the music from both those periods. Distant Mirror has also afforded him the opportunity to meet local early music musicians, and every fall he emcees a yearly Early Music festival. 

He is fortunate that his companion Judy (whom he calls Lady J)  is also a classical music enthusiast, and they spend much of our time attending local and regional concerts.  Having played guitar in his youth - although not very well - his goal is to someday have a go on the lute.

Ways to Connect

The Capella Cordina under the direction of Alejandro Planchart was one of the most exceptional and prodigious early music vocal ensembles of the 1970's.  On Friday night's Distant Mirror hear them perform a beautiful mass by the 16th century Spanish master Cristobal de Morales, his  Mass for the Armed Man. Join Allan Kelly at 10pm.

Leonin and Perotin were masters of music at Notre Dame cathedral Paris around the year 1200, just after the great edifice was built, and they were the first composers that we know about who employed polyphony.  On Friday's Distant Mirror hear their Viderunt Omnes and Sederunt Principes performed by the Early Music Conssort of London and the Hilliard Ensemble. There's also some secular music for good measure as the Newberry Consort performs music for a medieval banquet.  Join Allan Kelly at 10pm. 

Norwegian soprano saxophonist Jan Garbarek joins the Hilliard Ensemble on Friday's Distant Mirror with selections from that award winning 1994 CD  Officium, including two 14th century Czech pieces and a selection by Cristobal de Morales.  Then we pay tribute to the ground breaking early music ensemble Musica Reservata with selections from medieval France and Italy. And there are two pieces by  Saint Colombe for two bass viols performed by Les Voix Humaines.  Join Allan Kelly at 10pm. 

Soprano Emma  Kirkby  joins Gothic Voices on Friday night's Distant Mirror with three selections of 12th century abbess and mystic Hildegard of Bingen from the cd A Feather on the Breath of God. Then Ms. Kirkby is  joined by lutenist Anthony Rooley for selections of John Dowland from  his last sone cycle A Pilgrim's Solace.  Join Allan Kelly at 10.

For most of the 14th century the papacy was situated in Avignon in the south of France. The Avignonese  popes were great patrons of the arts, especially music, where the liturgy for the mass and divine offices were influenced to a great extent by the practices of the ars nova.  On Friday's Distant Mirror the Ensemble Venance Fortunat and La Schola of the university of Tours perform music from the popes' palace at Avignonese from the CD Altera Roma.  Join Allan Kelly at 10pm.  

Nearly all early music enthusiasts are familiar with the Cantigas of Santa Maria of Alfonso the Wise, those delightful 13th century pieces describing the miraculous intervention of the Virgin in healing all kinds of human ailments and misfortunes.  But did you know that a collection of secular music may also have existed at Alfono's court?  The Dufay Collective have done exhaustive research on the instruments of the day and the secular styles then in vogue andhave put together a program of secular music that very well may have existed at the court.  Hear some of these pieces on Fri

Distant Mirror: Feb. 23

Feb 23, 2018

Gautier de Coincy was a late 12th, early 13th century French cleric who translated into French many of the Latin miracle poems praising the Virgin and then set them to medieval popular songs in the courtly love tradition of the Trouveres, and on Friday's Distant Mirror hear several of these as Andrew Lawrence-King and the Harp Consort perform from their cd Miracles of Notre Dame. Join Allan Kelly at 10 pm.

On Friday's Distant Mirror hear fantasias, pavans and galliards by 16th century Spanish Renaissance composer Luis Milan from his compilation El Maestro, which serves as an example of the music current at a humanistic Renaissance court.  Viola da gambist Jordi Savall performs along with harpist Andrew Lawrence-King.  That's Distant Mirror Friday night at 10. 

On Friday's Distant Mirror hear Palestrina's Pope Marcellus Mass, the work credited with saving polyphonic church music.

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