Ronnie Gonzalez posted on our Facebook page:
Do you guys honestly not play the Echoes or Hearts of Space radio shows? Holy moley.
Honestly, Ronnie, we don’t. We’ll take your comment as a vote in favor of those shows, though.
Turning to another type of music, classical, by now you have probably heard about our plans to start a new, all-classical FM station. We’re expecting that to happen next month – stay tuned to the station for more details as we get closer
In an effort to get the best handle on the wishes of our classical listeners, we sent out a survey to over a thousand people who at some time in the last few years have indicated an interest in classical music. Over 250 responded, and we’ve had some very interesting answers.
It's the primary reason I listen to WHQR.
I find classical a wonderful relaxing tool in the midst of the turmoil of the world.
I also love jazz and would enjoy more programming - evenings?
Kathryn, we don't plan to have jazz on the all-classical station -- but we will have good news for you soon.
News and other information is easily available elsewhere. I want classical music.
We'll have good news for Herb as well.
My priorities change with my mood.
Also from the classical music survey: most respondents so far reported that they listen to our classical music on 91.3 fm, less so on computers, the HD2 stream, or on smartphones. That's not too surprising, but this is an area of rapid change. For example, Catherine, of Gurley, Alabama wrote:
I only get to listen to the radio at 91.3 when in Wilmington (which I greatly prefer!), so I listen to the smartphone (while working out, jogging, etc.), or the computer at work.
Meredith listens to the HD signal in her car, which is probably the most common way of getting the HD signal these days.
More from the survey: Anonymous said:
I do seek out the classical music after about 11 pm at night - so sometimes the BBC is a disappointment...I love to fall asleep to music.
One key question concerns newscasts. The classical music you now hear on WHQR usually has a 3- to 5-minute NPR newscast near the top of the hour. That makes sense on a station with a mixed format, but we wanted to know if listeners to the all-classical station wanted to hear them. The answer somewhat surprised us.
The hourly newscast prevents playing Beethoven's Ninth Symphony (or complete choral works) - we NEVER get to hear these due to the hourly newscast. So maybe every other hour or every third hour could be news-free.
I can listen to the news on any station, but can't listen to classical music!
Either way is okay.
We also asked how respondents feel about our current practice of repeating two hours of Jemila's morning show in the evening.
Barbara from Leland said:
Good use of resources.
Robert mentioned a problem we've wrestled with:
Their programs are good, even when heard in a.m. already. Alas, they need to not do current weather comments and other such out of context references.
And we asked about the Midday interviews:
Longer interviews would support the mission of the station and provide the guests with a better opportunity to educate the listeners.
A different anonymous said:
If this station is about classical music, get rid of talk.
It really depends on who is being interviewed.
And Bob said:
They do highlight local organizations/events and, as such, are generally worthwhile.
Thanks to all who participated in this classical music survey. You’ll hear lots more about the impending debut of our full-time classical station in the next few weeks.