Rachel Katz

WWFM Production Manager and Host of A Tempo

Rachel Katz is the host of A Tempo which airs Saturdays at 7 pm.

From an early age, Rachel Katz earned a reputation in her family for both sharing stories (a “town-crier” of sorts) and also sitting back while older family members shared theirs, taking it all in as a quiet observer.  Rachel pursued degrees in history at The University of Connecticut and Russian/Soviet studies and journalism at the University of Michigan, which soon set her on the path as a foreign correspondent in the early and mid-1990s. She worked in St. Petersburg, Russia, for three years, writing for UPI, The St. Petersburg Press, AP and The Moscow Times, as well as a variety of other  US national and regional publications. Back in the US, she worked at The Connecticut Post and as business editor of The (Norwalk) Hour before moving to Bloomberg News, where she covered retail and other business news.

Interested in exploring radio, she took broadcast classes and landed a job at The Classical Network as a production assistant and the opportunity to produce her own public affairs program, Views and Voices. As host and producer now of A Tempo, she brings her storytelling and reporter experience – and her love of music - to the world of arts and culture, exploring the challenges and opportunities facing the music world today.

In addition to playing violin with the Westminster Community Orchestra, Rachel enjoys fencing, birdwatching and salsa/swing/ballroom dancing.

Ways to Connect

The Philadelphia Orchestra recently announced it had received a $5 million gift from the Wyncote Foundation to support programming that will highlight the Fred J. Cooper Memorial Organ in the Kimmel Center's Verizon Hall. The five-year initiative will include performances of concertos and other symphonic works featuring the pipe organ, recitals, special events and the commissioning of new music for pipe organ.

Where will you be during the eclipse today?

We'll be right here bringing you great classical music before, during and after. Get in a sublime mood with Bach at One at 1 pm from Trinity-Wall Street. Then, once the sun has returned to its full orb of light, host Ross Amico will provide a musical coda from 4 - 7 pm, playing music inspired by the sun, the moon and the heavens.

When the American Boychoir School abruptly announced its closing this past week, it sent shock waves through not only the local Princeton arts community, but the broader choral music world as well.  This week on A Tempo (Saturday at 7 pm), host Rachel Katz surveys some of the thoughts from around these worlds. 

Westminster Choir College may be one step closer to having a new owner, as Rider University announced it is set to begin negotiations with an interested “international partner” in its effort to sell the renowned choral institution.

The American Boychoir School, whose choir has performed with major orchestras and pop stars including Beyoncé, is closing its doors after 80 years as declining enrollment hampered its financial recovery.

In a statement posted Tuesday on its website, Rob D’Avanzo, chairman of the school’s Board of Trustees, said enrollment for the coming year fell unexpectedly, leaving the school with 19 to 21 students to start the semester in three weeks.

A six-year initiative by the Houston Grand Opera will explore human and universal themes in operas new and old, and this week on A Tempo (Saturday 8/12 at 7 pm), host Rachel Katz touches base with the opera company to learn more. She'll speak with HGO's Assistant Artistic Director, Paul Hopper, about the themes that will be covered in the initial years of "Seeking the Human Spirit", plans for new commissions, and community partnerships with hospitals, museums and other organizations to bring members of the broader community along on this operatic journey.

The New Jersey State Council on the Arts recently held its annual meeting, awarding more than $15 million to arts organizations around the state and outlining its plans for the coming year. A Tempo host Rachel Katz will speak with Nicholas Paleologos, executive director of the Arts Council, about the grants, the state of arts organizations and arts education in New Jersey, and the Council's plans as it sets about creating its next strategic plan. Tune in Saturday (8/5) at 7 pm.

A Tempo host Rachel Katz this week interviews Daniel Hsu, the bronze medal winner at the 2017 Van Cliburn International Piano Competition. Hsu is a student at the Curtis Institute for Music, which is also the Alma Mater of this year's gold medalist, Yekwon Sunwoo. Hsu will talk about his experience in preparing for and performing during the competition, which is held every four years in Forth Worth, Texas. That's Saturday at 7 pm.

It's a rare opportunity when an emerging composer gets extended rehearsal time with a symphony orchestra to work through a new piece. So the chance to spend a week preparing a new work with the New Jersey Symphony Orchestra and hearing feedback directly from musicians offered an unusual learning experience for a select group of composers earlier this month. 

After developing its National Youth Orchestra of the USA and NYO2 programs, Carnegie Hall's Weill Music Institute has announced plans to launch NYO-Jazz next summer. This week on A Tempo (Saturday 7 pm), host Rachel Katz will speak with Douglas Beck, director of artistic training programs, about the new initiative, as well as this year's NYO-USA and NYO2 season, which began with a residency for both orchestras at SUNY-Purchase earlier this month.

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