Jed Distler, Between the Keys Recognized with ASCAP Foundation Deems Taylor/Virgil Thomson Award

Jed Distler, The Classical Network’s Artist-in-Residence, has been named the 2017 recipient of the ASCAP Foundation Deems Taylor/Virgil Thomson Radio Broadcast/Internet Award for his weekly program Between the Keys, a creative, imaginative and unique journey through the keyboard repertoire. 

"I was quite surprised yet thrilled to learn of this award, considering that Between the Keys has only been on the air for about two and a half years,” said Distler, a pianist, writer and composer who also hosts Piano Excursions on WWFM's JazzOn2. “It makes me all the more grateful to be part of The Classical Network family, to have a forum to share my creative work, my passions and my obsessions."

Between the Keys launched in March 2015 with a program devoted to the music of J.S. Bach and has since surveyed a multitude of topics from weather to Wagner, from encores to etudes. Guests have included Angela Hewitt, Lisa Yui, Donald Berman and Alberto Reyes, among many other musicians who have joined Distler to share their experiences and insights about the music presented. The program airs Tuesdays at 10 pm.

“We are absolutely delighted for Jed. He’s been a wonderful additional to the WWFM family of hosts and we’re honored to have his presence on our Network of stations. His knowledge, insights and creativity bring to his programs a fresh look into the world of classical piano, and beyond. His intimate delivery also draws in the listener as if he or she is a good friend, enjoying and discovering together splendid performances over a favorite beverage,”  said Alice Weiss, WWFM Program Director. “A must-hear for classical enthusiasts! We’re also honored to be among a stellar roster of world-class ASCAP Foundation winners.”  

This is Distler’s second ASCAP Foundation Deems Taylor award – he was honored with the Media Award in 2012 as artistic director of the Composers Collaborative for the Collaborative’s Serial Underground performance webcasts.  This is also the second time a WWFM program has received this prestigious award in four years -  the 2014 ASCAP Foundation Deems Taylor/Virgil Thomson Radio Broadcast Award went to Cadenza, a program hosted by David Osenberg featuring interviews with world-renown composers and musicians.

The awards were established in 1967 to honor the memory of composer, critic and commentator Deems Taylor, who died in 1966 after a distinguished career that included six years as President of ASCAP.  In 2014 the Awards were renamed to also honor the memory of Virgil Thomson (1896 – 1989), one of the leading American composers and critics of the 20th Century, and a former member of the ASCAP board of directors. 

In recognition of the award, The Classical Network will air a rebroadcast of Between the Keys every Monday at noon beginning October 16 through the month of November.

Distler is a Steinway Artist, and Between the Keys is generously underwritten by Steinway & Songs.