Today WDAV Classical Public Radio and the Charlotte Symphony Orchestra (CSO) announced an unprecedented three-year agreement to bring the area’s largest professional orchestra to the airwaves. Beginning with the 2010-11 season, WDAV will produce and broadcast seven of the CSO’s classical concerts each season through 2013. The agreement, forged among WDAV, CSO management, CSO musician representatives, and Local 342 of the American Federation of Musicians, is pending ratification by the full membership of the Charlotte Symphony Orchestra.
The first broadcast under the terms of the new pact will be a historic occasion: the CSO’s season-opening concert on Friday, September 24th, which also marks the debut of Christopher Warren-Green as the orchestra’s new Music Director. Beginning at 7 p.m., WDAV’s Jennifer Foster and Joe Brant will present the broadcast live on WDAV 89.9 and on wdav.org, direct from the Belk Theater of the Blumenthal Performing Arts Center. The centerpiece of the concert will be the emerging superstar cellist Alisa Weilerstein making her CSO debut in the Cello Concerto in E Minor by Sir Edward Elgar.
“I am absolutely thrilled by this agreement, which I view as a critical step to the future of this orchestra,” said Warren-Green. “The Charlotte Symphony belongs to the people of this community, and our presence on WDAV will bring the orchestra to everyone – into their homes, their cars, their offices.”
“Bearing in mind that it must still be ratified by the members of the orchestra, this agreement represents a long-held desire by the musicians of the Charlotte Symphony to have a regular broadcast presence,” added CSO Orchestra Committee Chair Frank Portone. “I’m excited that we will have the opportunity to showcase the Symphony just as we embark on a new era of artistic excellence under Maestro Warren-Green.”
The CSO concerts will be a central feature of WDAV’s Carolina Live, a weekly showcase of the Carolinas’ best live classical-music performances, produced and broadcast jointly with the stations of South Carolina ETV Radio. “Since the show’s inception, we’ve regularly included live concert recordings from the Greensboro Symphony, The Asheville Symphony, the South Carolina Philharmonic, the Greenville (SC) Symphony, the Spoleto Festival Orchestra, and the Brevard Music Center Orchestra,” said WDAV General Manager Benjamin K. Roe. “Now, for the first time, we’ll be able to bring the crown-jewel orchestra of this region – The Charlotte Symphony Orchestra – to a wider and larger audience than at any time in the station’s history.”
“The Charlotte area is so fortunate to have a vibrant classical music station,” said Warren-Green. “In my work with the London Chamber Orchestra, I have witnessed first-hand the crucial role that electronic media play in engaging the public with great music and great orchestras. I look forward to continuing to build the Symphony’s wonderful partnership with WDAV.”
About the Charlotte Symphony Orchestra
The Charlotte Symphony is the largest performing arts organization in the Charlotte region and the largest professional orchestra in the central Carolinas, employing more than 100 musicians, 62 on full-time contracts. The orchestra performs nearly 100 concerts each year, reaching more than 200,000 listeners. The CSO also operates the Charlotte Symphony Youth Orchestras and the Oratorio Singers of Charlotte and is committed to broad educational outreach. The CSO is supported by ticket revenue, generous corporate and individual giving, and foundation grants and receives operating support from the N.C. Arts Council and the Arts & Science Council.
About WDAV 89.9 Classical Public Radio
WDAV is one of America’s leading producers of original classical-music programming. In addition to producing 140 hours per week for its own broadcast use on its HD-1, HD-2, and wdav.org channels, the station produces nationally-distributed programs, including NPR World of Opera, Radio Chopin, A Carolina Christmas with Kathy Mattea, and, in partnership with ETV Radio of South Carolina, Carolina Live and Spoleto Chamber Music. A service of Davidson College in Davidson, NC, WDAV’s 89.9FM signal reaches a 22-county region centered in the Charlotte, NC metro area and ranging from Rock Hill, SC to Galax, VA. WDAV’s broadcasts can be heard live online 24 hours a day at wdav.org and iTunes, as well as on any iPhone equipped with the Public Radio Player.