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by Javier Irizarry

wfmt logoThe day of the WFMT recording marked the culmination of extensive preparation. It began with selecting the pieces I would perform in collaboration with my teacher, Desiree Ruhstrat. Once the selections were made, I shared an earlier performance recording with Robbie Ellis, broadcaster, and producer at WFMT Chicago, for feedback and to finalize the details. We then scheduled the recording and interview.

A few days before the recording, WFMT sent me a detailed questionnaire with potential interview questions. Receiving the detailed questionnaire from WFMT a few days before the recording was a game-changer. It not only helped me anticipate the questions but also allowed me to reflect on my musical journey and articulate my thoughts more clearly. This preparation significantly reduced my anxiety and made the interview feel more like a conversation.

On the recording day, I arrived early to ensure everything went smoothly. I had about 15 minutes to warm up and finalize any last-minute details with my piano accompanist. The studio provided a designated spot for me, and the sound technician conducted a few checks to ensure perfect audio quality.

During the session, I performed two pieces, introducing each one and explaining its significance to me. Although we encountered a few glitches during the second recording, the team worked with me to correct them, ensuring a polished and professional final product. For the interview portion, I had prepared notes but was encouraged to respond freely for a more natural outcome.

Additionally, I had the unique opportunity to see the WFMT building. It gave me a behind-the-scenes look at the dedication and expertise required to create top-notch broadcasts. This experience deepened my appreciation for the art of broadcasting and the hard work that goes into it.

My recording will air in July. Before it goes live, I’ll receive a copy to review and share with my teacher and family. This experience has been incredibly valuable, giving me insight into professional music recording and broadcasting.

Overall, this recording was a major milestone in my musical journey. It improved my performance skills and provided a deeper understanding of the professional music world. I’m grateful for the opportunity and look forward to sharing it with my teacher, family, and the WFMT audience in July.

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WFMT Introductions will air the Chicago Musical Pathways Initiative Class of 2024 episode on July 13, 2024. The episode will feature Javier Irizarry on violin as well as CMPI fellows Sofia Villanueva, flute, Isabel Armenta, marimba, Natalia Noriega, trumpet, and Wanye Williams, vibraphone.


Javier headshot, WFMT logo, Introductions logo

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