WDAV has Olympic Fever

With the Summer Olympic Games starting Friday, the world will be focused on London as athletes from across the world compete for medals in sports from rugby to table tennis. WDAV is turning our focus to the British capital, too. Join us from Friday, July 27 to August 12 for a festival of English music and performers!

The Line Up

FRIDAY: The Opening Ceremonies

  • Our festivities kick off Friday morning with Matt Rogers as he plays each of the Olympic Themes written by composer and conductor John Williams – one per hour of Matt’s program.
  • At noon, Matt brings you the Mozart Café featuring – what else? – Haydn’s “London” Symphony as the main course, plus recipes from Charlotte’s Big Ben Pub.
  • At 5pm, Fred Child hosts Beethoven’s Ninth: Live from London, a special concert to kick off both the BBC Proms – the world’s largest classical music festival – and the London Olympic Games. The broadcast begins with a music-rich pre-game, which includes highlights of the BBC Proms as well as colorful comments from Daniel Barenboim, Olympic athletes, and London locals. Then hear conductor Daniel Barenboim lead the West-Eastern Divan Orchestra in Beethoven’s last and greatest symphony.

JULY 28-AUGUST 12: The Games

Hear a feast of music by English soloists, conductors and orchestras, and works by composers ranging from William Byrd, John Dowland and Henry Purcell to Edward Elgar, Ralph Vaughan Williams, Benjamin Britten and William Walton.

  • Each weekday at 2pm you can hear a different English Artist Spotlight. We’ll feature a recording by English classical musicians such as pianist Stephen Hough, conductor John Eliot Gardiner, and trumpeter Alison Balsom.
  • Enjoy a different complete symphonic work by an English composer each weeknight on the Symphony @ 7.

It’s a “jolly good show” chock full of English classics from July 27 through August 12.

And keep checking our blog for more Olympic surprises!

 Cheerio,
-Frank Dominguez
Program Director
frdominguez@wdav.org
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WDAV Says Goodbye to Beloved Colleague and Friend Ruskin Cooper.

On Wednesday, July 18, Davidson lost a kindhearted and talented member of its community. Ruskin Cooper, Artist Associate for piano at Davidson College, passed away peacefully among his family after losing consciousness due to cardiac arrest.

To honor our friend, WDAV will be playing two of Ruskin’s own recordings in tribute:

Graceful Ghost Rag, by William Bolcom on Friday 7/20/12  at 4:53pm                      Rhapsody in Blue, by George Gershwin on Saturday 7/21/12 at 11am

Please join us in honoring this wonderful man. Ruskin will be greatly missed, and our condolences go out to his family.

To learn more about Ruskin’s many accomplishments and how to pay tribute to him yourself, check out this article from the Winston Salem Journal.

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Students Tour the WDAV Studio

Clara H. Jones Summer Institute student

By: Kali Blevins, WDAV Fellow
kablevins@wdav.org

 

On Friday, July 6, WDAV opened its doors to some special guests. Invited by board member Andrew Adair to tour the station, thirty-eight ten to fourteen-year-olds from the Clara H. Jones Summer Institute – a six-week program that focuses on improving fine arts skills as well as increasing reading, math, and science competency – filed into our conference room in matching turquois T-shirts. After a brief introduction by General Manager Scott Nolan, the group split in half – the boys starting with a presentation on radio and classical music while the girls explored the station. With most of the WDAV staff off at Brevard Music Center to record performances for our SummerStages program, this visit brought welcome activity to what would have been an oddly quiet Friday morning. And we were ready to record this excitement in every form of media possible. You can hear New Media Assistant George Marshall’s audio adventures with the kids here.

With pen and paper in hand – someone had to do some old school reporting – I tagged along with the seventh and eighth-grade girls on a tour led by WDAV staff member Sarah Demarest. Our first stop was the Music Library, which houses thousands upon thousands of CDs. “Does anyone have this many CDs at home?” Sarah asked as the group gazed at the station’s music collection. Then Sarah joked, “Does this age still know what CDs are?” She does make a good point. Even here at WDAV, we are almost entirely digitalized; our Music Library exists only for backup. Welcome to the twenty-first century.

Students look at pictures of previous WDAV special guests

Our next stop was a soundproof editing/production studio. One student tried her hand at opening the studio door, a task harder than it looks. After putting her full weight on the door (and using her foot for some extra leverage), she was able to release the airtight seal, and the door opened. We filed into the room as Sarah began to explain a bit about the audio editing process. The girls listened, wide-eyed and curious.

“This is the same kind of soundboard you would use if you were a producer making music,” added one of the Institute’s chaperones when Sarah had finished speaking. “So, if you saw Let it Shine [the latest Disney Channel original movie] and saw him working, this is the same kind of thing.” The room filled with an animated chorus of “ohhhh.” In an inspiring moment of teaching, the chaperone made a connection the girls could easily understand. Suddenly, the world of classical music no longer seemed so far removed from that of pop music.

Michael Muchane performing for the students

Moments later, my tour group met the fifth and sixth-grade girls – they had been doing the same tour backwards – in front of the performance studio. Patiently waiting at the studio’s piano was rising tenth-grader Michael Muchane. Michael has been playing the piano since age seven. He has competed in local and state competitions, performed large scale recitals, won several awards, and has volunteered his time to play in churches and nursing homes. And luckily for us, he was prepared to give a quick concert. Hear Michael play his three pieces by clicking the links below.

Sonata in D Major by Joseph Haydn
Scotch Poem by Edward MacDowell
The Harp Prelude by Sergei Prokofiev
 

We had one more stop left on our tour of the radio station: the broadcast studio. Unfortunately, we had no live announcers around – meaning no opportunity to see the red “on air” sign light up – but the discussion of how the automation system runs the station sparked some discussion. One student asked a question that has likely been on every radio listener’s mind: “What if someone messes up? Can they stop it or redo it?” The short answer is no. Live announcers don’t get a second go-around. Despite the five-second delay in the radio transmission, as Sarah put it, “what [the announcers] say is for everyone to hear.”

Student examines the sound board in the broadcast studio

With the tour complete, I followed the girls into the conference room from which the boys had just emerged. Once all twenty-some girls had settled into their chairs, Peter Browne, a WDAV board member, began his presentation, which was complete with props and a PowerPoint. Peter started by ringing a hotel desk-sized bell.

.  The group then climbed back on to their bus, collected their complimentary bags of WDAV goodies, and drove back home to Charlotte.

My tour group with Michael in the Clark Performance Studio at WDAV

*Interested in having your students tour the WDAV studio?                                        Give us a call at (877)333-8990.

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Frank Dominguez Honored at Con A de Arte

WDAV Program Director Frank Dominguez will receive the Leading Latino Artist Award for his role as host/producer of Concierto, WDAV’s bilingual Spanish/English classical music program, Saturday, June 16 at the Main Library in uptown Charlotte. The award will be given as part of the ArtSi’s Con A de Arte event which  showcases Latino art and culture in the Charlotte region. Way to go Frank! Congratulations!

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WDAV France Tour 2012!

Enjoy some photos from the recent WDAV group trip to France with 18 Classical Public Radio Supporters, hosted by Frank Dominguez!

Slideshow requires Macromedia Flash.

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Memorial Day Weekend – Summer Start-Up

Memorial Day

POSTED Friday, May 25, 2012 – Memorial Day Weekend is the unofficial start of summer, and at WDAV and in the Carolinas, it’s when the summertime music-making begins in earnest. We’ll kick things off this weekend with recordings we’ve made at great summer music festivals such as Spoleto Festival USA in Charleston, the Eastern Music Festival in Greensboro, and the Brevard Music Center and Summer Festival in the NC Mountains. You’ll also hear selections from other venerable classical-music festivals like Marlboro and Aspen.

It’s the perfect accompaniment to whatever you have on tap for the holiday weekend. Celebrate Summer Music Festivals this weekend on WDAV 89.9 FM and online at wdav.org!

 

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Davidson Receives $25 Million for Davidson Trust

Davidson College, WDAV’s licensee, has announced it will receive $25 million from Edward L. “Ted” Baker for The Davidson Trust which provides assistance to students for whom a Davidson education would not otherwise be financially feasible. Davidson is committed to meeting 100 % of admitted students’ demonstrated need with grants and student employment instead of loans, and this gift, the second largest in the college’s history, significantly furthers that ambition. Congratulations Davidson College, and thanks to Ted baker for his extraodinary generosity. Read more at the Davidson College Web site.

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Frank Dominguez Gets Shout Out

Frank DominguezLawrence Toppman at the Charlotte Observer has written a great article about our very own program director, Frank Dominguez. Congratulations Frank for some well deserved time in the spotlight! Read the article.

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