Local Music

Hear interviews with guests on music programs produced here at WMUK, as well as program news.

WMU School of Music

Tonight at 7:30 pm, pianist Yu-Lien The performs works of J.S. Bach, Carter Pann, and Robert Schumann in a solo recital that marks her return to the Western Michigan University School of Music, this time as a newly-appointed professor. 

Dr. The talked to Cara Lieurance about her years as a WMU graduate student and resident artist before she went on to earn her doctorate at Michigan State and later moved to Ohio, before returning to Kalamazoo in her new position. Her work as a pianist balances recitals, collaborating as an accompanist, teaching, and practicing - and she wouldn't want to give any of it up.

Shantanu Stareck

New music of Edgar Barroso, Ashley Fure, Cassandra Kaczor, Adam Schumaker, and Matthew Evan Taylor will be featured in a concert presented by Michigan-based new music organization, ÆPEX Contemporary Performance.   Garrett Schumann, a co-founder of the group, and Kalamazoo composer Adam Schumaker preview the music with Cara Lieurance, and talk about the diverse world of contemporary music and musicians.

Gold Company will celebrate its 40th anniversary this weekend with three performances in the Dalton Center Recital Hall at Western Michigan University. Along for the festivities are GCII, a live band, and several starry alums associated with Gold Company, including singer/songwriter Matt Giraud (of American Idol fame), Hollywood vocalist Nayanna Holley, Grammy award-winning John Proulx and jazz recording artist Kate Reid, as well as past directors Duane Davis, Kellyann Nelson and April Arabian-Tiniwho.

Director Greg Jasperse recruited his friend, sound technician/artist manager Bryan Farina, to handle the sound engineering of the shows, returning him to a role he had filled as a WMU student. Jasperse, Farina, and Matt Giraud joined Cara Lieurance at WMUK to preview the concerts. 


Violinist François Henkins, a native of South Africa who studied at Western Michigan University, has maintained his ties to the school and his former mentor, professor Renata Knific. Since forming the Kontras Quartet in 2009, the group has broken out in new directions. Their collaboration with the neo-bluegrass trio Kruger Brothers resulted in a well-received album, Roan Mountain Suite, and they're now working on a collaboration with saxophonist Branford Marsalis.  Saturday night in the Dalton Center Lecture Hall, the Kontras Quartet will perform bluegrass fiddler/composer Mark O'Connor's String Quartet No. 3 "Old-Time," and the String Quartet No. 1 in D by Tchaikovsky. Henkins previews the concert with Cara Lieurance.

Western Michigan University

Andrew Rathbun, director of the Advanced Jazz Ensemble, and composer/programmer Christopher Biggs, both School of Music faculty at Western Michigan University, talk about their first-time collaboration. It has resulted in a concert of works for the Advanced Jazz Ensemble plus digital process and live electronics, played by Christopher Biggs. They describe just how the electronic sounds and processing dovetails with the music, in an interview with Cara Lieurance.