The NPR Classical Music Companion

The NPR Classical Music Companion

An Essential Guide for Enlightened Listening

By Miles Hoffman

Houghton Mifflin, Paperback, 9780618619450, 306pp.

Publication Date: November 2005


"Whether you know a lot about music or nothing at all, Miles Hoffman will help you think about what you listen to and how you listen. This book is a great achievement. There's nothing else out there like it." -- Wynton Marsalis, composer, trumpeter, and winner of the Pulitzer Prize in music

An irresistible tour through the lexicon of classical music, The NPR Classical Music Companionoffers an essential education certain to increase any listener's understanding and appreciation of this potentially daunting musical genre. Miles Hoffman sheds light on more than 130 words and concepts that listeners may encounter in CD booklets, on the radio, in classical concert programs, or in newspaper reviews. These wholly delightful, accessible entries touch on fascinating topics, including what makes a good or a bad conductor, what musical term is most often misused, and why opera was invented. Whether you are an experienced concertgoer or have only recently been introduced to the music of Mozart and Beethoven, Hoffman's clear explanations will both enlighten and entertain.

"A musical guide filled with wit and unique charm. There are delicious musical morsels to delight everyone, from the novice to the scholar." -- Eugenia Zukerman, author, flutist, and arts correspondent for CBS News Sunday Morning

"[Hoffman] takes the myth and starch out of classical music." -- Cleveland Plain Dealer

"Carefully researched . . . informal and informative. . . a reader-friendly book." -- Washington Post

Miles Hoffman is music commentator for National Public Radio(R) 's Morning Edition(R). A graduate of Yale University and the Juilliard School, he is the violist and artistic director of the American Chamber Players.

About the Author
MILES HOFFMAN is the music commentator for NPR's Morning Edition. Every week for thirteen years, from 1989 to 2002, he delighted the nationwide audience of NPR's Performance Today with his sparkling commentary "Coming to Terms." A graduate of Yale University and the Juilliard School, Hoffman is the violist and artistic director of the American Chamber Players and is the dean of the Petrie School of Music at Converse College in South Carolina.