The 1964 World's Fair opened 50 years ago this week. In this archive joint, master builder Robert Moses, former Governor Charles Poletti and a cornucopia of others preview attractions expected at the fair. Among the featured attractions: The Pietà and a pavilion dedicated to the United Arab Republic. "We feel it's very, very important for the American people to learn more about Arab countries," Moses says.
During World War II, rationing became not only accepted, but a symbol of patriotism for most Americans. Listen to Oscar Brand in this never-broadcast documentary on how the government —and WNYC— helped foster that sentiment.
In the 1980s, WQXR's This is My Music featured at least 20 famous folks (from politicians to fashion models) who included a Bach piece in their all time top 4 musical pieces.
In 1954, entertainment superstar Danny Kaye became UNICEF's first Ambassador at Large, a post he held until his death in 1987. This is Mr Kaye's personal recounting of his first East Asian tour visiting many of the world's impoverished children.
Patricia Marx interviews Danny Kaye about humor, accents, and music.
In this episode from Northwestern University Reviewing Stand, a panel of experts discusses Dwight Eisenhower's 1956 budget message. Were those different times? Former director of the Congressional Budget Office Rudolph Penner compares the budget struggles of yesteryear with today's.
In this 1948 New Year’s Day address, NYC Health Commissioner Harry Mustard radiates post-war optimism and faith in the future. He proudly recounts the accomplishments of the previous year in infant and maternal health, food and water safety and venereal disease treatment. He also candidly discusses the resource shortages of the Health Department, as well as the need to do more in the areas of environmental health (smoke from old furnaces was a key issue of the time), tuberculosis, chronic disease and mental hygiene. In short, he sounds like he is giving a report from NYC’s current model for action, “Take Care, New York”.
Congressman Edward I. Koch speaks on a telephone interview about rent control, including an upcoming rally.
Longtime New York Public Radio engineer Jim Stagnito, a.k.a. Stag, bid the station farewell last week.
On March 5, 1853 a German piano maker named Henry Steinway (né Steinweg) founded Steinway & Sons at 85 Varick Street in New York City, barely five blocks from the present-day WNYC studios. Less than three months later another, much younger German piano maker named Helmuth Kranich would arrive at these shores. Little did he suspect that one of his children would someday work at a competing form of entertainment: radio, specifically WNYC.
On December 11, 1991, Salman Rushdie "quietly ventured outside Britain and emerged"  to speak at a Columbia University dinner celebrating the 200th anniversary of the First Amendment. The thunderous applause that greets Mr Rushdie's unexpected appearance sets the tone for his speech.
As New Sounds celebrates composer John Cage's 100th birthday, we at the WNYC archives add our own, irreverent archival item to the celebration: a WMCA News Parade program with an eerie premonition of John Cage's famous "silent" piece, 4'33".
This week the Leonard Lopate Show interviews Natalia Makarova. Listen to a WQXR interview Bob Sherman did with Makarova in 1977, when she was prima ballerina at American Ballet Theatre.
What do Fugazi, Star Trek, and Illinois farmers have in common? The preservation of culture, with an eye toward the future.
Preservation is moving toward center stage in the audio world, and nowhere is this more patent than at the AES Convention. Marquee names (Chuck Ainlay, Bob Ludwig) are expressing concern over the legacy of their work, and their talks are increasingly well attended by the rank-and-file membership, who increasingly face challenges that require coordinated solutions.
In a 1948 Halloween broadcast, a "recurrent nightmare" is played out in full: What would WQXR be like if it were part of a "big, great, wonderful network," broadcasting from "WQXR City?"