Interview

California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation

More than 3,300 inmates and staff have tested positive for COVID-19 at Avenal, which is the highest total of any prison in California and possibly in the entire country. So far, the virus has killed eight of the prison’s incarcerated men.

City of parlier

 

After many weeks of holding steady, COVID-19 cases are once again on the rise, not just in other parts of the country, but also statewide and here in the Valley. Daily new cases are at the highest they’ve been since early September, case rates and positivity rates are increasing, and all Valley counties—other than Madera and Tulare Counties, which are already in the “widespread” tier of the state’s reopening blueprint—are in danger of retreating back to more restrictive tiers.

Adventist Health

Nearly eight months in, the COVID-19 pandemic is still looking grim: Nationwide, the virus has killed more than 230,000 people, and this week, for the first time, more than 100,000 cases were reported in a single day. Twice.

And now it’s time for another StoryCorps San Joaquin. As part of our collaboration with the personal history project, we’ll be airing segments over the next year based on recorded conversations from February’s 2020 mobile tour in Fresno and Bakersfield. Today you’ll hear from two sisters, Diane Flowers and Marilyn Harris. They share stories about their beloved father, a man dedicated to peace and practicing what you preach.

In this final episode, Rei Hotoda leads us in an exploration of Beethoven's Diabelli Variations and the Piano Concerto No.5, the "Emperor." Pianist Shai Wosner joins us from his piano and shares fascinating insights into the "fun" Beethoven, as well as the deep, serious Beethoven. We'll hear Shai Wosner perform the the Piano Concerto No.5 with the Fresno Philharmonic.

Flickr user JKehoe_Photos (CC BY-ND 2.0)

It’s the end of October, which means we’re stuck with a pandemic holiday weekend. With health experts across the board discouraging trick-or-treating and gathering indoors, how can we celebrate safely?

 

Rest assured that there are ways to minimize the risks of celebrating Halloween and Dia de los Muertos. We offer some safety tips and creative alternatives to traditional festivities as part of this week’s COVID-19 update.

 

Monica Velez / Valley Public Radio

With the election coming up next Tuesday, we wanted to delve into what brings voters to the polls. What do they want changed? What do they want candidates to address in their neighborhoods? 

We decided to ask residents using a survey we called “Valley Votes 2020.” We collected over 150 responses. Residents explained with short answers what worried them about their neighborhoods, and ranked their most salient issues. 

 

And now it’s time for another episode of StoryCorps San Joaquin. As part of Valley Public Radio’s collaboration with the personal history project, we’re airing segments based on recorded conversations from February’s 2020 mobile tour in Fresno and Bakersfield. Today, we’re going to hear from mother and daughter, Maria and Jasmine Leiva as they trace their family roots in El Salvador.

KT Kim

Rei Hotoda leads us on an exploration of the influence of Mozart and Haydn on Beethoven's development both as a composer and a pianist. Pianist Joyce Yang shares insight on how pianists prepare physically and mentally for technically demanding work, and she also reflects on how her interpretation of a piece can evolve over time. Rei and Joyce compare two approaches to piano performance -- Mozart vs. Beethoven. We'll hear Beethoven's Piano in E-flat Op31/3, Mozart's Piano Concerto in c minor, and Beethoven's Piano Concerto No.1.

Jeffrey Hess / Valley Public Radio

 

Now that most counties in the San Joaquin Valley have graduated out of the most restrictive “purple” tier of the governor’s reopening blueprint, many schools are preparing to bring students back to campus, and some already have.

How are schools phasing in-person instruction back in, what’s the fate of extracurricular activities, and what precautions are schools taking to keep students safe? This week’s COVID-19 update breaks down what in-person learning could look like across the Valley.

Jacob Blickenstaff

We begin with that most iconic piece of music, Beethoven's Symphony No.5 in C minor, as we explore Beethoven's relationship with fate. Then pianist Orion Weiss joins us to discuss Beethoven's final piano Sonata, Op.111 in C minor, and we learn about a Bartok piano concerto with a distinct link to Beethoven.  

Pianist Jon Nakamatsu joins us to discuss Beethoven's "Waldstein" Sonata and the epic "Eroica" Symphony. A frequent artist in the Philip Lorenz International Keyboard Concert series, Jon Nakamatsu made his debut appearance with the Fresno Philharmonic in October 2018, performing Tchaikovsky's Piano Concerto No. 1. We'll hear all that music, plus a thoroughly engaging discussion of the development of the piano itself, and how that evolution intertwines with Beethoven's development as a composer.

StoryCorps

And now it's time for another segment of StoryCorps San Joaquin. As part of Valley Public Radio’s collaboration with the personal history project, we’re airing segments based on recorded conversations from February’s 2020 mobile tour in Fresno and Bakersfield. Today, as part of the Yonsei Memory Project, you’ll hear from lifelong friends, 94-year-old Gary Tsudama and 87-year-old Yutaka Yamamoto.

Healthy Fresno County Facebook Page

Last week, Fresno County businesses celebrated that the county had advanced into the red, less restrictive tier of the state’s COVID-19 reopening plan. Then, this past Tuesday, they learned that they may be forced to close back up again, as early as next week, if the county’s case rate doesn’t improve. A Kern County administrator warned the same could happen to its residents if they let their guard down too soon.

Traditionally, the Reel Pride Film Festival draws thousands to Fresno’s Tower District for one of the nation’s biggest celebrations of LGBTQ cinema. But in response to COVID-19 restrictions, organizers have turned this year's festival, which takes place this weekend, into an online event. To learn more about what audiences can expect, Valley Edition Host Kathleen Schock spoke with the festival director and board president Kathleen Arambula-Reyna.

  Pianist Charlie Albright joins us to discuss perhaps Beethoven’s most well known and most beloved solo piano pieces, Piano Sonata in C-sharp minor, “Moonlight.” How does an artist find new things in a work that is, arguably, overplayed? Rei Hotoda and Charlie Albright explore the work in depth, and Charlie plays. We’ll also hear pianist Awadagin Pratt performing Piano Concerto No.3 in c minor with the Fresno Philharmonic. 

Briene Lermitte

With her distinctive musical voice and vision, composer Maria Schneider has helped shape the evolution of large ensemble jazz over the past two decades. In 2019 she was named an NEA Jazz Master, the nation's highest honor in jazz. Her most recent recording, "Data Lords", deals with the conflicting relationships between the digital and natural worlds, and it features her acclaimed orchestra of 18 world-class musicians. FM89's David Aus recently spoke with Maria Schneider about the latest project and the state of music today.

Eugene Langan Photography

In the debut episode of the special series "Beethoven: Crisis & Creativity", we welcome Barry Douglas, internationally-acclaimed pianist and founder of Camerata Ireland. Rei Hotoda and Barry Douglas discuss the evolution of Beethoven's piano sonatas, as well as how Beethoven expressed social and human ideals in his music. Featured works include Piano Sonata in G Op.79, Triple Concerto in C Op.56, and the overture to Fidelo, Beethoven's only opera.

Fresno County Department of Public Health

 

When we seek to quantify the toll that COVID-19 is taking on our communities, we typically turn to official statistics like confirmed cases, hospitalization rates and, of course, death counts. But what if that final tally is an undercount, and the death toll is really much higher?

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