Chamber music from Lincoln Center; works from the “Great American Songbook” with Michael Feinstein; Broadway classics; news, information and culture (including from a Latino perspective); music from Mountain Stage and World Café; expanded local news, as well as the latest in medicine, education and technology - all these and more will be available at Delmarva Public Radio (DPR) starting Monday, Sept. 16.
DPR’s two stations - WSCL (89.5 FM) and WSDL (90.7 FM) - will expand their music and news formats while remaining true to their well-established missions, said General Manager Dana Whitehair. “We had an opportunity to take existing and new programs and create a blend that is fresh and engaging, and available nowhere else on Delmarva.”
The character of WSCL, currently a combination of classical music and NPR news, will reflect a broader spectrum, encompassing arts, culture and the spoken word. Such popular, leading shows as NPR’s Morning Edition and All Things Considered, along with Performance Today, remain. During weekday evenings, The Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center joins a lineup of world-class orchestras in recorded live performances. Another new program, The Record Shelf, reviews a variety of classical recordings, highlighting the best currently available.
WSCL’s weekends, however — particularly Saturday nights — offer a revamped musical lineup appealing to an array of listeners. Programs include: Song Travels with Feinstein; A Night on the Town with George Harter, which celebrates the American musical; and Swingin’ Down Memory Lane with David Miller, dedicated to keeping the big band sound alive; as well as shows spotlighting American popular song and jazz.
Sunday mornings will include Selected Shorts, featuring actors from stage, screen and television bringing intriguing stories to life from the stage of New York City’s Symphony Space, and Sunday Baroque, with such beloved names as Vivaldi, Handel and Bach, and lesser-known surprises.
“A goal for the future is to record regional live performances for later broadcast on DPR,” Whitehair said. “There’s a place for local musicians on these airwaves.”
WSDL also will maintain its strong news and information presence — with a twist. The Delmarva Today newsmagazine will expand to an hour. Many popular programs such as NPR’s Morning Edition, All Things Considered, Fresh Air with Terry Gross, The Diane Rehm Show, PRI’s The World (with access to the BBC’s 250 global correspondents) and APM’s Marketplace will continue.
Branding its new format as “Rhythm and News,” the musical portion of WSDL’s schedule is also being bolstered with popular NPR staples. Weekdays will have evening and overnight broadcasts of World Café, called “the premier public radio showcase for contemporary music.” Late night broadcasts will include PUBMusic. [“It’s like AAA (Adult Album Alternative) that got over itself,” its website says.]
Popular WSDL favorites such as Wait, Wait … Don’t Tell Me, the award-winning and thought-provoking This American Life, 2 Boomer Babes, and Marc Steiner’s On Delmarva continue on weekends. In addition, new information/news shows will be added, such as the TED Radio Hour, Sound Medicine, Living on Earth, and eTown (featuring environmental news and top musical performers), among others.
Musically, WSDL’s format will expand with the award-winning Mountain Stage, the longest-running program of its kind, joining the locally-produced Saturday Night With Robin; Acoustic Café, with its focus on contemporary song-writing talents; and the now-classic The Midnight Special, a combination of music, novelty and comedy.
“This hybrid of news, information, and both traditional and cutting-edge music I hope will attract an eclectic audience,” said Whitehair. “It appeals to myriad age groups. I foresee people of varying backgrounds saying, ‘You listen to WSDL? Hey, so do I!’”
Changes are necessary to make DPR sustainable. “We realize the full repositioning of both WSCL and WSDL will not be accomplished with one reformatting,” said Whitehair. “It will be an ongoing process, and adjustments will be considered based on credible audience response and membership levels. Many here at the station have been carefully considering ways to better engage listeners. I’m grateful for their work.”
For more information, including the complete new programing schedule for WSCL and WSDL, visit www.delmarvapublicradio.net or call 410-543-6895.