National Programs on WCQS
| A Prairie Home Companion: A Prairie Home Companion has become a neighborhood of the air, an answer to an American desire to fence off a small portion of the cultural landscape as a refuge from the coarseness, cynicism and irony that are postmodern life."— The Washington Post
A Prairie Home Companion is a two-hour weekly variety show broadcast live from the Fitzgerald Theater in St. Paul, Minnesota and other locations in the U.S. and around the world. At the heart of the show is host Garrison Keillor's humor-writing talent and unrivaled ear for great radio. He's the creator of hilarious skits like the weekly adventures of "Guy Noir, Radio Private Eye" and "The Catchup Advisory Board," and of course the stories from "the town that time forgot and the decades cannot improve" in Keillor's signature monologue, "The News from Lake Wobegon." Regular performers include the radio acting company of Tim Russell, and Sue Scott, with Tom Keith, and Fred Newman on Sound Effects. The Guys' All Star Shoe Band is A Prairie Home Companion's house band, and is led by pianist Rich Dworsky.
|All Things Considered: All Things Considered is a vital daily companion to people who strive to stay informed and in touch. Since its debut in 1971, this daily afternoon radio news magazine has been a leader and innovator in broadcast journalism. Through the incisive and intuitive, relevant and reflective reporting that characterizes the program, All Things Considered transforms the way listeners understand current events and view the world.
Heard by more than 12 million* people on over 600 radio stations each week, All Things Considered is one of the most popular programs in America. Every weekday, hosts Melissa Block, Michele Norris, and Robert Siegel present two hours of breaking news mixed with compelling analysis, insightful commentaries, interviews, and special – sometimes quirky – features. Threaded between reports is the distinctive music that inspired the creation of the online program All Songs Considered. Andrea Seabrook hosts a one-hour edition of the program on Saturday and Sunday.
| BBC Overnight: For over 70 years, BBC World Service has been the globe's most comprehensive source for news. No other news source has a network of international correspondents, reporters and producers to rival BBC. When news breaks — anywhere, anytime — BBC is there.
The BBC World Service is far more than just breaking news, though. It offers a wide variety of information programming, including programs on arts, sports, science and business.
Listeners count on BBC to provide superior news and information programming because they know they can trust BBC World Service — the world's most respected news source.
||Being: Described as a cultural "phenomenon" by the New York Times, Being (formerly Speaking of Faith)
is a Peabody and Webby Award-winning weekly program that airs on more
than 240 stations. The program engages listeners across the spectrum of
belief and non-belief in conversation about life’s deepest questions.
From autism to the ethics of torture, Krista and her guests reach
beyond the headlines to probe faith and meaning, ethics and new ways of
being, amidst the political, ecological, economic, cultural and
technological shifts that define 21st century life.
| Car Talk: Car Talk is a hilarious, fast-paced call-in program in which hosts Tom and Ray Magliozzi take the fear out of car repair and find the fun in engine failure. Every week, these uninhibited Boston brothers dispense automotive first aid and roadside philosophy to more than 4.1 million listeners on 588 public radio stations—and the audience is still growing!
Winner of the Peabody, broadcasting's most prestigious award, Car Talk has been lauded by the media since its national premiere in 1987. Segments about Car Talk have appeared on 60 Minutes, 20/20, The Tonight Show, Late Night with David Letterman, The Today Show, and Martha Stewart Living, along with print features in the New York Times, Newsweek, Time, Smithsonian, USA Today, People, and Rolling Stone.
Tom and Ray's most recent books are "In Our Humble Opinion" and "A Haircut in Horsetown and Other Great Car Talk Puzzlers," both published by Penguin Putnam. Their most recent audio collections are “Born Not to Run: More Disrespectful Car Songs,” “The Hatchback of Notre Dame: More Car Talk Classics,” and “Car Talk Car Tunes: The Car Talk Compendium of Disrespectful Car Songs, Volume 1. ”
|| Chicago Symphony Orchestra: Hosted by Lisa Simeone and Produced by Marty Ronish, the two-hour, weekly Chicago Symphony Orchestra broadcasts offers a unique format that includes dynamic and innovative content to illustrate the fascinating stories found inside the music, with insight from the performers themselves. With the powerful sounds of the CSO as its centerpiece, the broadcasts include produced segments featuring interviews with CSO musicians, guest artists and composers; and an exploration of the stories found within the CSO’s rich heritage of recordings and the Orchestra’s illustrious history in Chicago.
| Fresh Air: One of NPR’s most popular programs, Fresh Air with Terry Gross is categorized as a talk show but hardly fits the mold. “I try to show the connections between the person’s work and their life that led to that work,” Gross says of her interviews. As a host, she takes time to get to know her guest from every angle, and her meticulous preparation shows. Gross links ideas and experiences in ways that help even the most quiet and reserved guests open up; at the same time she anticipates exactly what her listeners want to know next.
Nearly four million people a week turn on Fresh Air to hear fascinating stories and ideas from people who shape, record, and deconstruct the here and now. Guests are authors, artists, TV writers, historians, musicians, scientists, filmmakers, politicians, actors, and other influential people of today. Fresh Air complements these one-on-one interviews with commentary and criticism from a roster of nationally recognized experts.
| From the Top: What began as a radio experiment in 2000 quickly became one of the fastest growing and most popular weekly classical music programs on public radio. From the Top hosted by acclaimed pianist Christopher O’Riley celebrates the amazing performances and captivating stories of America’s best pre-college classical musicians.
Each one-hour broadcast presents five high-caliber performances along with interviews, sketches and games, revealing the heart and soul behind these extraordinary young
musicians. Now in its tenth year on air, From the Top has featured prominent guest artists including Yo Yo Ma, Hilary Hahn, Bobby McFerrin, Midori, Béla Fleck and more. Alumni of From the Top are now popping up in the country’s top orchestras and emerging with solo careers. From the Top also encourages its young performers to share their music with new audiences and give back to their communities.
| Jazz at Lincoln Center: A Peabody Award-winning show, Jazz at Lincoln Center with Wynton Marsalis is a celebration of jazz with spectacular performances and informative interviews.
Jazz at Lincoln Center renewed the American big band tradition this past spring: Igor Butman and Wynton Marsalis brought their big bands to life in Moscow Nights. The Julliard Jazz Orchestra blossomed with Bobby Watson in Kansas City Boogie-Woogie. Composer Derek Bermel planted a new seed with American Composers Orchestra. Teenagers' broke out of their shell in the exhilarating Essentially Ellington Big Band Competition. Toshiko Akiyoshi, Yusef Lateef and Maria Schneider cross-pollinated Jazz and world music with their exotic large ensembles. The Afro-Latin Jazz Orchestra brought beaming performances by Claudia Acuna, Joe Lovano, Herman Olivera, Greg Osby and Lew Soloff.
|| Jazz Profiles: Singer Nancy Wilson hosts this Gold Medal award-winning, documentary series chronicling the people, places and events in jazz. Jazz Profiles features jazz topics that are varied and all-encompassing. The program focuses largely on individuals, in particular artists who are still living and performing. Musicians who have been featured in-depth on Jazz Profiles include Dave Brubeck, Sarah Vaughan, Oscar Peterson, Sonny Rollins, Duke Ellington, Louis Armstrong, and Charlie Parker. The series has covered significant anniversaries of the dearly departed, the instruments of jazz, jazz cities, jazz families and more.
By combining archival recordings, interviews and narration, each program in the series tells an informative and engaging story that celebrates the music and those who make it. The appeal of Jazz Profiles is broad, ranging from the news junkie to the jazz aficionado.
|| Jazz with Bob Parlocha: Nationally known jazz expert and former program director / host of KJAZ of San Francisco, Bob Parlocha's rich, elegant voice is familiar to jazz audiences as host of the highly rated "Dinner Jazz Show" at the former KJAZ. For nearly 20 years the San Francisco-based Parlocha has been musician, broadcaster, radio producer, record producer, gourmet cook, and a spokesman for the genre. Bob Parlocha's programs originate from The WFMT Jazz Network, a program service of WFMT in Chicago.
|Left, Right & Center: A weekly half-hour of political ping-pong. Smart, well-connected players presenting witty, diverse and serious talk. Provocative, up-to-the-minute, alive and witty, KCRW's weekly confrontation over politics, policy and popular culture proves those with impeccable credentials needn't lack personality. This weekly "love-hate relationship of the air" features four of the most insightful news analysts anywhere, Matt Miller, Arianna Huffington, Tony Blankley, Robert Scheer.|
| Marian McPartland's Piano Jazz: For 30 years, legendary pianist Marian McPartland has welcomed a stellar line-up of jazz artists for conversation and improvisation on her Peabody Award-winning program. Piano Jazz fans say the show’s intimate style is “like listening in on a conversation in someone’s living room." And no one but McPartland, with her engaging personality and improvisational savvy, could host such a variety of performers in her radio “living room."
Piano Jazz is a forum for jazz legends and influential performers as well as up-and-coming talents. Oscar Peterson, Herbie Hancock, Dave Brubeck, Diana Krall, Max Roach, Cassandra Wilson and Tony Bennett are among the over 400 guests who have joined McPartland to create dynamic duets and discuss their lives and music.
||Marketplace: Award-winning Marketplace is public radio's daily magazine on business and economics news "for the rest of us." The 30-minute program—with an irreverent reporting style all its own—airs weekday evenings on more than 320 public radio stations nationwide and boasts the largest audience for any business program in the United States on radio, cable or network television. In conjunction with Marketplace Morning Report and Marketplace Money, this trio of financial programming covers listeners from wallet to Wall Street.|
| Marketplace Money: Each week on Marketplace Money, host Tess Vigeland looks at the week's major national and international stories that will impact the average listener's wallet. Produced by the award-winning team of Marketplace and Marketplace Morning Report, Vigeland continues Marketplace Money's legacy of intelligent irreverent radio with smart topics, expert advice, and current information. During the hour-long program, Vigeland and her guests help listeners map out the course to financial well-being, offering advice on topics like how to pay for college and whether to buy or lease a car as well as the individual impact of national stories.
|| Morning Edition: Waking up is hard to do, but it’s easier with NPR’s Morning Edition. Hosts Renee Montagne and Steve Inskeep bring the day’s stories and news to radio listeners on the go. Morning Edition provides news in context, airs thoughtful ideas and commentary, and reviews important new music, books, and events in the arts. All with voices and sounds that invite listeners to experience the stories.
The range of coverage includes reports on the Supreme Court from Nina Totenberg; education from Claudio Sanchez; health coverage from Joanne Silberner; and the latest on national security from Tom Gjelten. Steve and Renee interview newsmakers: from politicians, to academics, to filmmakers. In-depth stories explore topics like “digital generations” about the effect of technology on the way we live; special series delve into the intersection of science and art, and find untold stories of the country’s Hidden Kitchens.
| On the Media:
today's fast-moving society, the media can easily slip through our
awareness and blend together to create a near constant whir of white
noise. We often fail to fully realize how broadcasters and print
professionals filter our political process and shape a sense of
national culture. On The Media invites us to turn on, tune in, and wise
Hosted by veteran journalists Brooke Gladstone and Bob Garfield, On The Media decodes what we hear, read, and see in the media every day and arms us with critical tools necessary to survive the information age. With compelling reporting and uncommon insight, the program breaks through the white noise to uncover significant issues of the day and carefully expose the relationship of the media to culture and society.
| Says You:
Says You! Is an game of words and whimsy, bluff and bluster. The show
features a regular group of panelists divided into two teams. The
program is recorded before live audiences at locations throughout the
United States. The show's website is integrated with the show.
Audience members can suggest questions for the show through the website.
| Selected Shorts:
Hosted by Isaiah Sheffer, "Selected Shorts A Celebration of the Short
Story" presents some of the finest artists in American theater and
screen reading short fiction by classic, contemporary and bold new
Each program is recorded live at Peter Norton Symphony Space in Manhattan. The programs have featured works by master writers, from Chekhov to Wharton and Hemingway; stories by contemporary greats from John Updike to Alice Walker; and the fresh works of new literary talents, from Pulitzer Prize-winning Jhumpa Lahiri to promising newcomers like Rattawut Lapchararoensap and Etgar Keret.
||The Splendid Table: The Splendid Table is a culinary, culture, and lifestyle one-hour program that celebrates food and its ability to touch the lives and feed the souls of everyone. Each week, award-winning host Lynne Rossetto Kasper leads listeners on a journey of the senses and hosts discussions with a variety of writers and personalities who share their passion for the culinary delights.|
SymphonyCast is a two-hour weekly radio program featuring a full-length
concert by a national or international symphony orchestra. Concerts are
drawn from Europe's leading ensembles, along with U.S. orchestras,
including the Los Angeles Philharmonic, The Philadelphia Orchestra and
The Cleveland Orchestra.
| The Record Shelf: Everything you wanted to know about classical music but were afraid to ask is answered on The Record Shelf. Hosted by Jim Svejda, one of the most respected critical voices in classical music who has guided the program since 1983 when he launched it, The Record Shelf brings listeners imaginative thematic classical programming.
Svejda reviews old and new recordings and presents artist retrospectives and insightful interviews. His "thumbnail" sketches of individual composers are one-of-a-kind programs, and his expert, irreverent and highly opinionated style has made The Record Shelf a favorite classical series among loyal listeners throughout the United States.
| This American Life: Built around the innovative personal vision of host Ira Glass, This American Life, quite literally, pioneered a new kind of radio storytelling. The weekly program explores a theme — fiascos, conventions, the job that takes over your life — through a playful mix of radio monologues, mini-documentaries, "found tape," short fiction and unusual music.
Usually the program applies the tools of journalism to everyday life. But sometimes it tackles news stories, leading to some of its most distinctive and acclaimed shows. This American Life did an hour documenting life on an aircraft carrier that was flying missions over Afghanistan during the war there. It spent another hour with mercenary soldiers fighting in Iraq. One show followed school reform over a decade at a Chicago public school. Another was about the most successful informant in FBI history, and how he double-crossed his employer, Archer Daniels-Midland, and then the FBI.
The stories presented are engaging, intimate, surprising, funny, disturbing, bittersweet. Glass and his staff have an unusual knack for finding writers and performers whose work hasn't been heard on radio, and producing their stories alongside his own disarming commentary in a way that listeners praise as "riveting," "mesmerizing." Breakout stars from the show include David Sedaris, Sarah Vowell and David Rakoff.
| Wait, Wait, Don't Tell Me: NPR’s Wait Wait…Don’t Tell Me! takes a fast-paced, irreverent look at the news of the world—and the weird. Now in its sixth year, the show offers a modern and sometimes raucous twist on the old-time radio quiz show, mining NPR news stories for quiz questions. The host is Peter Sagal, who is an award-winning playwright and father of three in his spare time. America’s favorite newscaster, NPR’s Carl Kasell, is the show’s official judge and scorekeeper.
Each week, Sagal quizzes the panelists and listeners to determine just how closely they paid attention to the week's news. He serves up questions in all forms: lightning rounds, tape from NPR news shows, multiple choice, identify the “fake” story and fill-in-the-blank limericks. Listeners call 888-WAIT-WAIT for a chance to win the most coveted prize in all of public radio: a custom-recorded greeting by Carl Kasell for their home’s answering machine or voice mail.
A rotating trio of witty panelists completes the Wait Wait team. They include author and humorist Roy Blount Jr., Boston Globe writer Charlie Pierce, Washington Post columnist Roxanne Roberts, writer/performer Adam Felber, BBC contributor Sue Ellicott, author P.J. O’Rourke, comedian Paula Poundstone and humorist/pundit Mo Rocca.
| Weekend Edition: Whether revealing events in small-town America or overseas, or profiling notable personalities, Weekend Edition from NPR News appreciates the extraordinary details that make up every story. This two-hour morning newsmagazine covers hard news, a wide variety of newsmakers, and cultural stories with care, accuracy, and a wink of humor, courtesy of hosts Scott Simon and Liane Hansen.
On Saturdays, Simon’s award-winning commentaries sum up an idea or event related to the week’s news. Clever, information-packed exchanges with NPR senior news analyst Daniel Schorr, sports columnist Ron Rapoport, gardening guru Ketzel Levine, entertainment critic Elvis Mitchell, and other commentators contribute to the unique feel and personality of the show.
On Sundays, Weekend Edition combines the news with colorful arts and human-interest features, appealing to the curious and eclectic. With a nod to traditional Sunday habits, the program offers a fix for diehard crossword addicts—word games and brainteasers with The Puzzlemaster, a.k.a. Will Shortz, puzzle editor of The New York Times. With Hansen on the sidelines, a caller plays the latest word game on the air while listeners compete silently at home. The NPR mailbag is proof that the competition to go head-to-head with Shortz is rather…vigorous.