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(The following news item appears on the WAMC Northeast Public Radio website (www.wamc.org).  It is reproduced here without permission.)
Long-time WAMC host leaves the air
Long-time WAMC Public Radio classical music host, Robert J. Lurtsema, has gone on indefinite medical leave. As a result, WAMC staff has announced a weekend program change. The station emphasizes that there will be no net loss of classical music as a result. The change also addresses what WAMC Executive Director Alan Chartock calls, "...an overwhelming number of requests for an earlier airing of National Public Radio's Weekend Edition." Because of its allegiance to Robert J., WAMC had previously started Weekend Edition at noon. Most NPR stations play the program at earlier times in the morning, the time period for which it was designed. 

"Lurtsema's loyalty and excellence was the single factor that made this station swim upstream," said Chartock. 

WAMC's staff reports that a large number of callers objected to the fact that, in its old time slot, Weekend Edition had been truncated by broadcasts of the Metropolitan Opera throughout the opera season, sometimes taking the entire program. "Fortunately," said WAMC Assistant Executive Director Dave Galletly, "this will never happen again. Classical music lovers should have no fear because some wonderful new programming is being added on both Saturday and Sunday."

©2000 by WAMC Northeast Public Radio, Inc.
 Reproduced here without permission.

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