NPR

Ryan Loew / 90.5 WESA

As the year comes to a close, we’re looking back on our favorite Essential Pittsburgh stories and guests from 2014. Today we’re highlighting our favorite science and sci-fi guests.

To hear the full-length audio for this story, please refer to the original post.

Just as it would be difficult for TV viewers to imagine Saturdays without Saturday Night Live, it would be equally challenging for public radio listeners to contemplate Fridays without Science Friday. The weekly call-in program engages listeners and scientists in lively conversations about all things science, and you can hear it here on 90.5 WESA on Fridays from 2 to 4 pm.

The host of Science Friday is Ira Flatow, an award winning NPR host and science correspondent who spent six years writing the well remembered Emmy-Award-winning Newton’s Apple on PBS as well as reporting on science for CBS. Ira started Science Friday as a radio show back in 1991, so it has been nearly a quarter of a century that the program has been on the air. Ira joined us back in June and talked about the interesting ways Science Friday has evolved in that time.

“We’re all about lifelong learning. And that’s why I think listeners are very interested in Science Friday -- because we’re teaching them something new every day, every week.”

NPR Host Interviews in 2014: David Greene Reflects on Russia

Dec 23, 2014
David Gilkey / NPR

As the year comes to a close, we’re looking back on our favorite Essential Pittsburgh stories and guests from 2014. Today we’re highlighting some of our favorite interviews with NPR personalities.

To hear the full-length audio for this story, please refer to the original post.

In November of this year, NPR Morning Edition host and former Moscow bureau chief David Greene came to Pittsburgh for a member event co-sponsored by 90.5 WESA and the World Affairs Council titled “Reflections on Russia.”

Many of those reflections were included in his new book "Midnight in Siberia," about a train journey into the heart of Russia. He joined us by phone from Washington D.C. to talk about what inspired his book.

NPR Host Interviews in 2014: Michele Norris Eavesdrops on Race

Dec 23, 2014
Michele Norris / Shoxclix

As the year comes to a close, we’re looking back on our favorite Essential Pittsburgh stories and guests from 2014. Today we’re highlighting some of our favorite interviews with NPR personalities.

To hear the full-length audio for this story, please refer to the original post.

Last October, award-winning NPR journalist and former All Things Considered co-host Michele Norris gave a talk entitled “Eavesdropping on America’s Conversation on Race” in conjunction with the exhibit “Race: Are We So Different?” at the Carnegie Museum of Natural History.

In 2010, Ms. Norris released her first book, The Grace of Silence: A Memoir, which focuses on how America talked about race in the wake of Barack Obama’s presidential election and explores her own family’s racial legacy. She is currently a host and special correspondent for NPR, which inspired her talk.

Ben McLeod / Flickr

As the year comes to a close, we’re looking back on our favorite Essential Pittsburgh stories and guests from 2014. Today we’re highlighting some of our favorite interviews with NPR personalities.

To hear the full-length audio for this story, please refer to the original post.

In November, 90.5 WESA welcomed a new show to the weekend lineup: an hour of storytelling called Snap Judgment. The program is hosted by Glynn Washington, whom the Atlantic referred to in a 2013 article as “the fastest rising public radio star in memory.” Here’s Glynn Washington, explaining why Snap Judgment is called “storytelling with a beat.”

David Gilkey / NPR

Public radio listeners are familiar with David Greene as the host of Morning Edition. Prior to his role on the popular morning program, Greene covered politics and events for NPR. He spent two years as a foreign correspondent based in Moscow. The Pittsburgh native joins us for a conversation about his new book "Midnight in Siberia: A Train Journey into the Heart of Russia."

Richard Howard

This Monday we lost a part of the public radio family when Tom Magliozzi, half of the brother team "Click and Clack", passed away from complications of Alzheimer's.

Car Talk has been a public radio program for 37 years and it continues to be one of the most popular programs on the air.  Many of you have asked what will happen to the show and how to send condolences to Tom's family. 

Earlier today I posted a brief paragraph about some changes that will be happening to Morning Edition and All Things Considered.  I've gotten a few emails asking deeper questions, so I thought I'd explain the NPR changes in greater detail.

We all love NPR, and they have a great podcast that is distinctly non-newsy called The Pop Culture Happy Hour. It's hosted by Linda Holmes, NPR's Pop Culture Editor and writer of the blog, Monkey See.  

WQED.org

It was sixty years ago this month that WQED went on the air as one of the nation’s first public television stations. The idea that a station did not run commercials, but instead relied on public donations, was revolutionary. Today, it’s hard to imagine life without public television. WQED gave viewers programs such as Mr. Rogers Neighborhood, Previn and the Pittsburgh, and The War That Made America

WQED President and CEO Deborah Acklin said the start of WQED was made possible by non-commercial educational licenses, also known as NCE’s, being offered for the first time for television.

“For the first time, it was going to be a license that was owned by the community as opposed to owned by a school board or owned by a University or the other kind of models that were out there. There were only four, WQED was the fourth, there were only four stations on air when WQED went on the air. So everything was an experiment.” 

Al Letson / alletson.com

Saturday’s in February, 90.5 WESA is airing State of the Reunion. The host, Al Letson describes the program as "telling the stories of America, one community at a time."

The State of the Reunion began after Letson watched a popular television show.

A Conversation with the Iconic Diane Rehm

Nov 13, 2013
Ryan Loew / 90.5 WESA

Celebrated NPR host, Diane Rehm conducts her daily interview show with a distinct curiosity and a distinctive voice.

As host of The Diane Rehm Show for more than 30 years she was the first radio talk show host to interview a sitting president in the Oval Office.

With no formal radio training, Rehm says she has always felt at home on the air.

OCV / Flickr

Ask any public radio listener and chances are they have a favorite program they listen to on a daily or weekly basis.

Essential Pittsburgh has been fortunate to talk with hosts of, and contributors to, some of your favorite public radio programs.

Who's Paying Attention to Alonzo Bodden?

Jun 20, 2013

Public radio listeners may know Alonzo Bodden best from his stints as a panelist on NPR's Wait.. Wait,..Don't Tell Me. Described as a comedian who combines intimidation and intelligence, he is also a past winner of NBC's Last Comic Standing.

Sesame Workshop

Gary Knell is the President and CEO of NPR which remains unique among news organizations. While a number of large media outfits have shuttered their foreign bureaus NPR has reporters throughout the world. However, public radio is also at a crossroads as some of its long time shows like Talk of the Nation comes to an end and Car Talk no longer produces new shows.

What will the future of NPR look like and can it stay relevant in the changing media landscape? Also, how is NPR cultivating new talent to reflect and appeal to a new generation of public radio listeners? Mr. Knell is in Pittsburgh to speak at the Americans for the Arts convention.

Kyle Cassidy / Wikipedia

  NPR's weekly news quiz show Wait, Wait...Don't Tell Me has been entertaining public radio listeners for more than 15 years. Now the show hits the big screen with a nationwide cinecast. We'll talk with host Peter Sagal about the radio show, it's failed TV pilot and his experience at the recent Boston Marathon.

Paula Poundstone / Flickr

Paula Poundstone talks about her career as a stand up comedian, being a part of Wait Wait, Don't Tell Me…, life on the road, and her 16 cats.