A new locally produced weekly talk show on University of Indianapolis public radio station WICR-FM/HD will explore issues in the arts and arts education.
Voice of the Performing Arts debuts at 1 p.m. Saturday at 88.7 FM and online at WICRonline.org. The one-hour program is hosted by Steven Libman, veteran arts administrator and former CEO of the Center for the Performing Arts in Carmel, and Jeff Swensson, arts education advocate and outgoing superintendent of Carmel Clay Schools.
Each episode features arts professionals, educators or community leaders discussing the importance of introducing young people to the arts and recounting how they personally were drawn to the field, perhaps after attending a concert as a child or through the efforts of an influential teacher.
“It’s never boring when you ask people, ‘How did you become involved in the arts?’” says Libman, whose resume includes leadership roles with the Pittsburgh Ballet, the La Jolla Playhouse and now a consulting firm, the Libman Group. “The show explores the richness of arts education and helps us gain an understanding of how people have been positively affected by someone in their life who turned them on to the arts.”
Guests for the premiere episode include David Hochoy, artistic director of Dance Kaleidoscope; Kathleen Hacker, chair of UIndy’s Department of Music; Alan Davis, president and CEO of the Carmel Symphony Orchestra; and Soo Han, director of the Carmel High School Orchestra. Upcoming guests include Ann Midgette, classical music critic for the Washington Post; Karen Pollard, artistic director of the Bermuda Festival of the Performing Arts; and entertainment producer Larry Rosen, founder of the national Jazz Roots concert and education series.
WICR Programming Director Russ Maloney calls the show “a perfect fit” for the Indianapolis market’s only jazz and classical music station.
“This is a local program that focuses on education and the arts, two subjects that are central to our mission,” Maloney says. “The future of the arts is through education – specifically, getting young people energized and excited about the arts. Voice of the Performing Arts is a program that can lead the local discussion on that connection.”