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Celebrating 50 years on FM 91.5
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In 2024 WXXI-FM 91.5 celebrates its 50th anniversary, 12/23/1974. Each month we will share reflections and memories of events, celebrations, honors and personalities that have made WXXI Public Media what it is today.

April memories going back to the 1990s

As we continue with our reflections on 50 years of FM 91.5, we look back to things that happened in April.

Brenda Tremblay (blonde, left) and Laurie Dishman (brunette, right) standing outside on what appears to be a cold autumn day
Brenda Tremblay

It was in April 1991 that Lauri Dishman joined the WXXI Classical staff as Midday host and Music Director, presenting great classical music into 1995. She came to us from KSJR Classical in St. Cloud, MN, part of Minnesota’s YOUR Classical network. Pictured here are current morning host Brenda Tremblay (left) with Laurie Dishman (right) from the early 1990s. We were all just kids back then!

April 21-24, 2016 also saw the second time WXXI presented a 3-day series of concerts throughout Rochester as part of Pipedreams Live! with host Michael Barone. WXXI has hosted Pipedreams Live! three times; first in 2009, then 2016 and most recently in November 2023. Rochester’s faithful organ lovers packed the venues every time, and we are grateful to Eastman School of Music’s organ department for partnering with us for each of these events.

13 performers stand posed before an ornate pipe organ at Sacred Heart Cathedral, Rochester, NY

This photo shows host Michael Barone (back row, left) along with the performers, and ESM Professor David Higgs (center front) standing in front of the Halloran-All Saints Organ at Sacred Heart Cathedral in Rochester.

2016 was also the year that WXXI Classical first presented the Performance Rochester initiative, sharing concert recordings from ensembles throughout Rochester during April. That small initiative has now grown into an annual series of programs called Performance Upstate, which includes concert recordings from all across upstate New York and the Finger Lakes region.

In April 2024, WXXI Classical will be creating a new memory as we present a playlist of music timed to coordinate with the total solar eclipse that will be drawing thousands to Rochester, as we are directly in the path of totality. Tune to WXXI Classical on your radio (FM 91.5), smart speaker, computer or mobile app to hear a special playlist of music about the sun, the moon, the planets beginning just after 2pm. You’ll hear music by Benjamin Britten, Claude Debussy, George Frederick Handel, Gustav Holst, Ludwig van Beethoven and more, as day turns to night and back to day again.