Classical 91.5

Randy Gorbman

Randy Gorbman is WXXI's Director of News and Public Affairs. Randy manages the day-to-day operations of WXXI News on radio, television, and online. 

Randy has over 30 years of broadcast news experience, and was recently news director at WHAM-AM in Rochester. Randy has also been news director, writer, announcer, and producer at radio stations in several cities in New York and Connecticut, as well as working as an editor at the NBC Radio Network. He served as past president of the New York State Associated Press Broadcasters' Association, and is currently a member of its Board of Directors.

Randy has also taught journalism to local students, serving as adjunct instructor at SUNY Geneseo and Monroe Community College.

Randy received his Bachelor of Arts degree in Communication from the S. I. Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University, and his Master's degree in Liberal Arts from SUNY Empire State College.

The death of singer Aretha Franklin has touched a lot of people including a Rochester musician who actually played with her.  Herb Smith plays trumpet both with the RPO and with his own jazz trio. He is also an adjunct professor at RIT and is conductor of the RIT Jazz Ensembles.

Rochester will continue its annual July 4 Independence Day celebration downtown with fireworks set to a Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra (RPO) performance on the Main Street Bridge.

The evening kicks off at 7:30 p.m. with a jazz performance on the Main Street Bridge by Paul C. Boutte and the Motown Review. The RPO, featuring Conductor Ward Stare, will follow with a performance of patriotic favorites from 9 - 10:15 p.m., featuring a fireworks display over Downtown at 10 p.m.

All events are free.

The Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra announced its 2018/19 season at its fourth annual, free season preview concert Tuesday night in Kodak Hall at Eastman Theatre. 

The event featured the entire orchestra onstage performing selected excerpts, with emcees Music Director Ward Stare and Principal Pops Conductor Jeff Tyzik. 

An iconic figure in the art world, both in Rochester and around the world has died.

Wendell Castle died in his Scottsville home on Saturday. That word came Sunday morning from RIT, where Castle was an artist in residence. He was 85 years old.

Wendell Castle was an artist for more than 60 years and is considered a founder of the American Crafts and Art Furniture movements. More than 100  of his works are installed in museums worldwide, and up until recently, was still innovating in his studio in the Rochester area.

A former Eastman School of Music piano student is speaking out about his lawsuit alleging he was retaliated against when he rebuffed the sexual advances of a professor.

Joseph Irrera, who grew up in Batavia, now lives in the San Francisco area. But the 35 year old classical pianist says it’s been tough getting a teaching position, something he thought he was on track to do after pursuing his doctoral degree at Eastman.

The Gateways Music Festival in Rochester is getting a big boost in the effort to expand its offerings.

That festival, whose mission is to support professional classical musicians of African descent, has been awarded a $300,000 from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.

The president and artistic director for the festival, Lee Koonce, says that grant will allow Gateways to eventually add two full-time staff positions.

The music director and conductor of the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra will be around for a while longer.

The RPO announced on Monday that Ward Stare has renewed his contract for three more years, through the end of the 2020/21 season.

The 35 year old Rochester native became the RPO’s youngest-ever music director in 2014.

The Democrat & Chronicle has laid off some news staff.

Among those laid off was arts writer and music critic Jeff Spevak.  Over a nearly thirty-year career, Spevak earned five first-place finishes for features writing  for the D & C from the New York State Associated Press.

A renowned television and film composer and Eastman School of Music alumnus has won his 5th Emmy Award for Outstanding Music Composition for a Series.

Jeff Beal won the award for Original Dramatic Score for Chapter 63 of the Netflix series House of Cards.  This is Beal's second Emmy for his House of Cards scores.  

Rochester City Council has scheduled a forum for next Thursday to get public comments about plans for Parcel 5.

As WXXI News reported on Thursday, the Arts and Cultural Council for Greater Rochester and some of its members including Geva and the RPO have expressed concerns about the process that has been in place so far.

The arts groups want to have more discussion about the impact the project would have on other arts organizations.

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