*In honor of Black History Month, ALL EARS WITH TERRANCE MCKNIGHT, the Classical 105.9 FM WQXR show hosted by the pianist and former Morehouse professor Terrance McKnight, will present a suite of programs celebrating the musical influences of key African American cultural figures.
All Ears, a ‘classical’ music program that surprises and delights its listeners with cross-genre juxtapositions and unexpected connections, kicks off a stellar line-up with a two-hour musical journey with renowned choreographer and dancer BILL T. JONES (February 5).
Other specials include a tribute to DR. MARTIN LUTHER KING, JR. through the music of his time (February 12), and a warm farewell to LENA HORNE, DR. BILLY TAYLOR and others we lost in 2010 (February 19).
On February 26, All Ears presents Still Swinging, Still Classic: A Musical Biography of Pioneering Pianist Hazel Scott, a two-hour musical portrait of the wife of late Congressman Adam Clayton Powell, Jr. and Julliard-trained pianist who performed in the most prestigious concert halls in the world. Known as the “darling of Café Society,” HAZEL SCOTT became a trailblazer in Hollywood; an outspoken civil rights activist which made her a political target; and ultimately, an outcast, ostracized by the Church community because of her music.
“Though Hazel’s amazing story grabbed me immediately, I was astounded to find she is overlooked and under-appreciated, despite activism and trailblazing positions in the entertainment industry that rivaled Paul Robeson,” said McKNIGHT. “She was so gifted that she was admitted to Julliard as an eight-year-old; she was touring with established female bands and was being mentored by Billie Holiday, Fats Waller and Art Tatum by 14. And before Oprah, there was Hazel – the first African American to host her own television show. It’s my deep hope that this special will shine a light on her astounding accomplishments.”
ALL EARS WITH TERRANCE MCKNIGHT airs Saturdays at 10pm, with encore plays on Sundays at 4pm and on Q2, WQXR’s web-only stream dedicated to new music, on Mondays at 8pm. Still Swinging will also air on sister station WNYC on February 14th at 8pm (on both 93.9FM and AM 820) and on February 20th at 4pm (93.9 FM only). All broadcasts are streamed live and archived on www.wqxr.org and www.wnyc.org.
February 5th: A Musical Biography of Bill T. Jones
February 12: A Beautiful Symphony of Brotherhood: A Musical Journey in the Life of Martin Luther King, Jr.
February 19: Musical Afterlife
A farewell tribute to four pivotal African Americans who we lost in 2010: Lena Horne, Abbey Lincoln, Shirley Verrett and Dr. Billy Taylor.
February 26th: Still Swinging, Still Classic: A Musical Biography of Pioneering Pianist Hazel Scott
Additional airplays of Still Swinging:
Monday, February 14 at 8pm on WNYC 93.9 FM and AM 820
Sunday, February 20 at 4pm on WNYC 93.9 FM
ABOUT TERRANCE MCKNIGHT
Terrance McKnight, who first became a nightly fixture in Manhattan two years ago when he joined WNYC, recently revamped his Saturday evening program, ALL EARS WITH TERRANCE MCKNIGHT. A celebration that places the European classical tradition alongside the American classical tradition – jazz, gospel, African American spirituals, country, among others, McKnight’s ALL EARS strives to make these genres accessible to everyone with his inimitable blend of music, popular culture, news and archival excerpts. All Ears was honored with an ASCAP Deems Taylor Award in December 2010. Past programs are available at www.wqxr.org
McKnight previously worked at Georgia Public Broadcasting, where he was creator, producer and host of Studio GPB, which introduced a wide array of musical artists through interviews, live studios sessions, and commercial recordings. Guests included John Adams, Osvaldo Golijov, Marin Alsop, Marcus Roberts and Michael Eric Dyson. The program so grew in popularity and influence during McKnight’s five-year tenure that it was expanded from one night a week to a daily show. While at GPB, McKnight also initiated and hosted the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra Broadcast series, which featured live performances and interviews with conductors, guest soloists and orchestra members.
In addition to his radio work, McKnight joined the faculty of Morehouse College in 1998, teaching music appreciation and applied piano. An accomplished pianist, McKnight got his start in public radio as the first resident of NPR’s Classical Music Diversity Initiative Program, working on NPR’s Performance Today and eventually hosting Evening Music on WNYC-FM, NPR’s New York City affiliate, from 2008-2010. In 1997, McKnight performed the world premiere of Broke Baroque at the National Black Music Caucus 25th Anniversary Celebration in Atlanta as part of a musical tribute to T.J. Anderson.
McKnight holds a B.A. from Morehouse College and toured with the College Glee Club as an accompanist and soloist. He also earned an M.A. in Music from Georgia State University, where he performed with the 20th Century Chamber Ensemble. McKnight’s varied musical experiences-from glee club soloist and accomplished pianist, to professor at Morehouse College, and finally as producer and host of several music programs for public radio-opens his listeners’ ears, hearts and minds.
New York Public Radio is New York’s premier public radio franchise, comprising WNYC-FM, WNYC-AM, WQXR, and The Jerome L. Greene Performance Space, as well as www.wnyc.org, www.wqxr.org and www.thegreenespace.org. As America’s most listened-to AM/FM news and talk public radio stations, reaching 1.1 million listeners every week, WNYC extends New York City’s cultural riches to the entire country on-air and online, and presents the best national offerings from networks National Public Radio, Public Radio International, American Public Media, and the British Broadcasting Company. WNYC 93.9 FM broadcasts a wide range of daily news, talk, cultural and music programming, while WNYC AM 820 maintains a stronger focus on breaking news and international news reporting. Classical 105.9 WQXR is New York City’s sole 24-hour classical music station, presenting new and landmark classical recordings as well as live concerts from the Metropolitan Opera, the New York Philharmonic, among other New York City venues, immersing listeners in the city’s rich musical life. In addition to its audio content, WNYC produces content for live, radio and web audiences from The Jerome L. Greene Performance Space, the station’s street-level multipurpose, multiplatform broadcast studio and performance space. For more information about New York Public Radio, visit www.nypublicradio.org.