Elliott Forrest


Elliott Forrest is the weekday afternoon host on WQXR. 

On top of providing the soundtrack to your evening commute and The Score at Four, he’s also the national host of the weekly concerts from the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center and hosted more than 60 concerts on stage at Carnegie Hall.

On top of providing the soundtrack to your afternoon/evening commute and movie music during The Score at Four, Forrest is also the national host of the weekly concerts from the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center and hosted more than 60 concerts on stage at Carnegie Hall. For 6 years he directed the annual NY Public Radio productions of A CHRISTMAS CAROL.

He’s hosted, produced and directed specials for PBS Television, including the oratorio, Considering Matthew Shepard and The Classical Comedy Contest from Carolines. For 12 years he was the host of A&E Television’s Breakfast with the Arts. For more than 20 years he’s been associated with Peter Schickele (PDQ Bach), appearing on stage with him and on his recordings.

Elliott regularly produces live events around the country, including at Lincoln Center, Carnegie Hall, the Hollywood Bowl, Boston’s Symphony Hall and The Jerome L. Greene Space. He is the recipient of a George Foster Peabody Award and two Excellence in Broadcasting Awards from the New York State Broadcasters Association.

What made you fall in love with classical music: I hit a new level of love and appreciation with Rimsky-Korsakov’s Scheherazade. When I latched onto the Sultan’s theme, so bombastic at the start and mellow at the end, I came to understand the storytelling power of music.   

Music-related obsession: In my spare time, I create large visual elements like video, animations and images to go along with classical music. I loved Disney’s Fantasia from a little kid and it has inspired me ever since to marry visuals to music.


Elliott Forrest appears in the following:

The Dreamer Who Helped Inspire the Dream Act

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

The story of Tereza Lee, a classical pianist, whose struggle to attend college helped inspire Senator Dick Durbin to introduce the Dream Act.


Meryl Streep Explains Our Fascination with Florence Foster Jenkins

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

The stars of the movie 'Florence Foster Jenkins' talked to Elliott Forrest about this infamous tone-deaf opera singer. 

Comments [15]

Did Gershwin Get His ‘Rhythm’ from African-American Composer William Grant Still?

Thursday, June 09, 2016

Tony-nominated musical "Shuffle Along" posits that George Gershwin found one of his most famous themes while watching the original 1921 production. Elliott Forrest investigates.
Read More

Comments [7]

Alan Silvestri on 'Back to the Future,' 'Forrest Gump' and His Hollywood Break

Thursday, October 15, 2015

The filmmaker Robert Zemeckis has called Alan Silvestri his "creative soulmate" – a fitting description for the composer who has scored his films including "Back to the Future."
Read More

Comments [3]

Sharon Isbin on Gay Marriage, Bach and Protecting Her Hands

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Sharon Isbin's resume is a long list of groundbreaking firsts. In an interview with WQXR's Elliott Forrest, the guitarist expresses her hope for another first this year.
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Comments [7]

Renée Fleming Sends Up Opera World in 'Living on Love'

Thursday, April 16, 2015

Soprano Renée Fleming—who has worked in the worlds of opera, indie rock and even a Super Bowl — is opening next week on the Broadway. She spoke with Elliott Forrest backstage.
Read More

Comments [2]

Where to Find Young Orchestra Audiences? Try a 'Lord of the Rings' Concert

Thursday, April 09, 2015

"For all the talk of the graying classical audience, this enthusiastic crowd was as diverse in age and ethnicity as I've seen in a long time," writes host Elliott Forrest.
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Comments [7]

New York Philharmonic Names Joshua Gersen Assistant Conductor

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Less than three weeks after the New York Philharmonic announced that Alan Gilbert will be leaving the orchestra, another podium-related announcement landed on Wednesday.
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Comments [3]

The Blurred Lines Between Theft and Artistic Inspiration

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

A trial is underway to determine if the song "Blurred Lines" is actually a rip-off of Marvin Gaye's "Got to Give it Up." But there's a long history of "borrowing" in the music industry.

Comments [15]

The Greene Space

WQXR Presents An American in Paris Preview

Monday, February 23, 2015

7:30 PM

Mon, Feb. 23 | Join us in The Greene Space for an exclusive preview of the new production, including cast performances of classics from the beloved score by George and Ira Gershwin.

Enough of Handel's Messiah? Try One by Monty Python's Eric Idle

Monday, December 15, 2014

Eric Idle, the famous member of the absurdist-comedy collective Monty Python, talks with WQXR's Elliott Forrest about his work in comedy and classical music.
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Comments [3]

On-Demand Video: Jim Gaffigan on Comedy, Parenthood and His Love Affair with Food

Friday, November 07, 2014

As part of the New York Comedy Festival, comedian and author Jim Gaffigan joined us live in conversation with WQXR's Elliott Forrest. 


The Greene Space

Jim Gaffigan in Conversation with Elliott Forrest

Thursday, November 6, 2014

7:00 PM

Thurs, Nov. 6 | The New York Comedy Festival and WNYC present a night of conversation with the comedian and author. A live video webcast will be available.

Live Now: Jim Gaffigan Talks to a Classical Music Host for the NY Comedy Festival

Wednesday, November 05, 2014

The comedian and author of Dad Is Fat is doing a live chat with WQXR's own Elliott Forrest in the Greene Space. Stream it here.


The Greene Space

WQXR Presents Joshua Bell

Monday, September 29, 2014

5:00 PM

Mon, Sept. 29 | The superstar violinist returns to The Greene Space to celebrate the release of his newest recording, BachA live video webcast will be available.

Holocaust Opera The Passenger to Make Its NY Debut at Park Avenue Armory

Thursday, July 10, 2014

WQXR's Elliott Forrest spoke with Patrick Summers of the Houston Grand Opera, who is conducting this production, about the work's belated New York premiere.

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Comments [1]

The Greene Space

WQXR Presents Piotr Anderszewski: Brunch with Beethoven

Sunday, April 27, 2014

11:00 AM

The pianist is renowned for his interpretations of music ranging from Bach to Bartok, Schumann to Chopin, Szymanowski to Janáček. See him in his only New York appearance this season.

Mark O'Connor's Prized Violin Damaged in Backstage Accident

Tuesday, April 08, 2014

Mark O'Connor dropped his fiddle as he was getting ready to go on stage Monday night in Sioux Falls, SD, causing several major cracks in the wood. He tells Elliott Forrest how it happened.

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The Greene Space

Inside Look: 'Casa Valentina'

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

7:00 PM

Join WQXR's Elliott Forrest for a conversation with four-time Tony Award-winner Harvey Fierstein as he takes us behind the curtain of his first new play in almost 30 years. Watch a live video webcast Tuesday, March 11 at 7pm ET.

The Greene Space

Inside Look: 'A Raisin in the Sun'

Thursday, February 27, 2014

7:00 PM

WQXR's Elliott Forrest takes us behind the curtain with director and Tony Award nominee Kenny Leon; Tony Award winner Anika Noni Rose; Tony Award nominee Stephen McKinley Henderson; and Sean Patrick Thomas. Watch a live video webcast of the conversation.