Mike Harrah is host of The Lyric Stage, which airs Sundays at 8 pm.
Mike doesn't know if he saw The Great Caruso 14 times when he was 13 or 13 times when he was 14, but hearing Mario Lanza and all of the other great singers in that movie jump-started an already nascent love of opera. This later led him to study voice and was followed by several seasons singing in the New York City Opera Chorus during the great Beverly Sills/Norman Treigle era in the late 60's and early 70's. He also appeared in regional opera performances in small roles and in the chorus on the same stage as Robert Merrill, James McCracken, Blanche Thebom, Roberta Peters and Placido Domingo – who sang the big roles. To have done this still dazzles him with a "is it really true?" feeling. Chance and fate were smiling.
Mike has thirty years of radio experience include several years of full-time hosting evening and afternoon classical music shows at the public radio station in Toledo, Ohio, and many years here at WWFM on a part-time basis and now hosting The Lyric Stage.
Along the way he has acted in stock, small regional theaters, television industrials and commercials, and made appearances on various network shows. In a parallel life he has taught writing in Ohio and at Temple and Drexel Universities in Philadelphia. He published a young adult novel in the 1980's that HBO turned into a one-hour film.
His favorite non-operatic musical works include lots of Mozart, Tchaikovsky and Mahler's Third Symphony. He still loves to hear Mario Lanza sing. His gift of song and his sound make him forget about any flaws in phrasing and technique.