WTJU Marathon Will Be a 24/7 Classical Music Extravaganza

December 2, 2010 — WTJU will kick off its winter Classical Music Marathon on Dec. 6, with programming all day and all night until 11 p.m. on Dec. 12.

WTJU, at 91.1 FM and streaming live, is the University of Virginia's community radio station. This year, a week is being devoted to each of its musical genres – classical, jazz, rock and folk – to help build community financial support for the 53-year-old station. The "Jazz-Tober" fundraiser in October raised $42,000 in pledges, an all-time record.

For the first time, classical music will play all through the night using the station's automated programming system. "We hope U.Va. students will tune in while they're studying for exams," Deborah Murray, classical music co-director, said. "There's nothing like the music of J.S. Bach, for example, to sharpen the mind and soothe the spirit."

The programming will include a five-hour salute to Beethoven, 200th birthday shout-outs to Chopin and Schumann (both born in 1810), music from the 16th century right up to the 21st century, and selections from opera, film and theater.

A live in-studio performance by local musician Debbie Hunter and the vocal group MIRA will celebrate the spirit of the season with Christmas music from the Middle Ages, as part of a program that Murray will host on Dec. 11 at 5 p.m., featuring Christmas music through the ages, and from the British Isles to the Russian steppes.

Other highlights:

•    "The Year 1510," a 500th anniversary celebration of music of the first half of the 16th century, Dec. 6 at 5:05 p.m.

•    "Jefferson in Paris," Dec. 8 at 2 p.m. In his five years in Paris (1784-1789), Thomas Jefferson heard the music of 70 different composers. The show will feature selections from Clementi, Piccinni, Devienne, Kozeluch and Haydn's Paris symphonies.

•    "Songs of the Sea," hosted by John Delehanty on Dec. 10 at 9 a.m.

•   "From the New World," Dec. 10 at 7 p.m., hosted by John Mitchell, will feature rhythms of Mexico, Argentina and Brazil.

•    "All Made of Tunes," hosted by Bruce Penner and featuring Megan Sharp, choirmaster and minister of music at Westminster Presbyterian Church, soprano and concert soloist. Sharp will perform in a live tribute to the late WTJU host Emmett Boaz at on Dec. 11 at 6 a.m.

•    A complete performance of Wagner's "Die Meistersinger von Nurnberg," with co-hosts Tim Snider and Ann Shaffer, on Dec. 12 from noon to 6 p.m.

The marathon wraps up with the traditional Handel's "Messiah" and other music by Handel on Dec. 12 starting at 7 p.m.

The fundraising goal is $40,000. "WTJU receives funds from the University, the Corporation for Public Broadcasting and our underwriters, but we can't function without full support of listeners," Rob Nowicki, acting general manager, said. "And the bar has been raised, particularly in light of the serious possibility of cuts in CPB funding for public radio, which represents fully 20 percent of WTJU’s current budget."

For the complete marathon schedule, visit WTJU's website. For information call 434-924-0885.

— By Marian Anderfuren

Media Contact

Marian Anderfuren

Director of Media Relations U.Va. Media Relations