Michael Kownacky

Program Host

Michael is program host and host of the WWFM Sunday Opera, Sundays at 3 pm, and co-host of The Dress Circle, Sundays at 7 pm.

You can also hear Michael, along with his The Dress Circle co-host, on JazzOn2, every Wednesday evening from 7pm, eastern, for Strike Up the Band, a program celebrating the big bands and dance bands of jazz.

Ways to Connect

Jacques Offenbach's opera The Tales of Hoffmann was his last work and was left incomplete at the time of his death.  As a result, it is often staged with many changes that are against Offenbach's wishes.  On this week's Sunday Opera at 3 pm, we'll be looking at this wonderful score as it was meant to be produced and featuring a stellar cast lead by Francisco Araiza as Hoffmann, Samuel Ramey as all four of Hoffman's evil foils, Anne Sofie von Otter as The Muse / Niklausse, Eva Lind as Olympia, Jessye Norman as Antonia, and Cheryl Studer as the treacherous Giulietta.

This week's Sunday Opera (3 pm) will be taking two looks at operas with a connection to Gertrude Stein.  The first is The Mother of Us All, an opera about Susan B. Anthony by Virgil Thomson with a libretto by Stein that features Mignon Dunn in the title role along with James Atherton, Philip Booth, Batyah Godfrey, and the Santa Fe Opera Chorus and Orchestra, Raymond Leppard, cond.  The second is a 21st century work by Ricky Ian Gordon and Royce Vavrek titled "27" which looks at Stein's life with Alice B. Toklas in Paris, starring Stephanie Blythe and Elizabeth Futral.