Christopher O'RileyChristopher O'Riley (Host/piano) has redefined the possibilities of classical music through media, contemporary music and innovative programming. In addition to hosting From the Top's radio and television programs and appearing with top orchestras and festivals around the world, O'Riley is also an interpreter of some of the most important contemporary popular music of our time. He lives by the Duke Ellington adage, "there are only two kinds of music, good music and bad."

O'Riley has performed two-piano arrangements of Astor Piazzolla's tangos with Argentine pianist Pablo Ziegler and collaborated with choreographer Martha Clarke in a work which sets the staged stories of Anton Chekhov to the piano works of Alexander Scriabin. He has recorded two discs of his own re-imaginings of Radiohead songs, as well as a tribute to Elliot Smith, where he delves into the deeply emotional and complex work of the troubled singer/songwriter who died prematurely in 2003. O'Riley's Second Grace: Music of Nick Drake, interprets the work of singer/songwriter Nick Drake.

In spring 2009, his series '2+2=5' at Columbia University's Miller Theatre bridged his own piano transcriptions with classical compositions. These concerts utilized multimedia art and intertwined his own arrangements of Radiohead, Nick Drake and Elliott Smith between movements of Shostakovich, Debussy and Robert Schumann.

His most recent disc Out of My Hands, released in August 2009, draws on the work of Nirvana, REM, Radiohead, Pink Floyd, Tori Amos, The Smiths, Cocteau Twins, and Portishead among others. O'Riley is a recipient of top prizes and awards from the Van Cliburn Competition and the Avery Fisher Career Grants.

He is a graduate of the New England Conservatory of Music in Boston.

See Christopher's solo tour schedule!

Joanne RobinsonJoanne Robinson (Announcer) has a broad arts and communications background. She has performed and toured with several children's theater companies and worked on production teams of two children's television programs. In addition to being From the Top's announcer, she serves as From the Top’s Senior Designer.