After eight years sharing his passion for opera as the host of SATURDAY AFTERNOON AT THE OPERA and BACKSTAGE on CBC Music, Ben Heppner retires
Kwagiulth and Stó:lō First Nations mezzo-soprano Marion Newman to helm SATURDAY AFTERNOON AT THE OPERA starting Sat. Sept. 11, Montréal-born soprano Frédéricka Petit-Homme to host CHORAL CONCERT starting Sun. Sept. 19 and orchestral conductor Daniel Bartholomew-Poyser to host CENTRE STAGE
Additional audio offerings for the fall lineup include Julie Nesrallah’s new Saturday afternoon show JULIE’S OPERA JEWELS starting Sat. Sept. 11, and new weekly podcast THE Q INTERVIEW featuring exclusive and extended content with Tom Power is out now
September 7, 2021 – CBC Music is welcoming new voices to its airwaves as Daniel Bartholomew-Poyser (CENTRE STAGE), Marion Newman (SATURDAY AFTERNOON AT THE OPERA) and Frédéricka Petit-Homme (CHORAL CONCERT) join CBC following the retirement of renowned opera tenor Ben Heppner, host of SATURDAY AFTERNOON AT THE OPERA and BACKSTAGE WITH BEN HEPPNER. Newman will take the reins from Heppner as the new host of SATURDAY AFTERNOON AT THE OPERA on CBC Music on Sat. Sept. 11. BEST OF BACKSTAGE, showcasing highlights from the show’s eight year run, will broadcast on CBC Radio One this fall starting Sat. Sept. 11.
During his farewell show over Labour Day weekend, Ben Heppner said, “I’ve decided to move into a new phase of my life. Although I won’t be working anymore – there’s lots of things that I want to do… and I want to thank you for making Saturday Afternoon at the Opera a regular part of your week. Thank you too for the emails and letters you’ve written – many of you have become a treasured presence in my life. You will be missed.”
The three new hosts bring a range of expertise and new perspectives to CBC Music from the world of Canadian classical music and opera. Starting Sat. Sept. 11, Kwagiulth and Stó:lō First Nations mezzo-soprano Marion Newman will take over as the host of SATURDAY AFTERNOON AT THE OPERA. As previous host Katherine Duncan moves into a new CBC Music producing role, Montréal-born soprano Frédéricka Petit-Homme will host CHORAL CONCERT starting Sun. Sept. 19, and acclaimed orchestral conductor Daniel Bartholomew-Poyser will continue as the host of CENTRE STAGE since taking up the post earlier this summer.
“Ben’s sharing of his adventures during his opera career deeply engaged a community of dedicated listeners each weekend. We are grateful for his stories and will greatly miss his telling of them on the CBC airwaves,” said Steve Jordan, Senior Director, CBC Music. “We are quite excited for audiences to hear how Daniel Bartholomew-Poyser, Marion Newman and Frédéricka Petit-Homme will bring their vast music knowledge and lived experiences to our classical, choral and opera listeners.”
Further to the new hosting additions, mezzo-soprano Julie Nesrallah will launch a new, weekly one-hour show, JULIE’S OPERA JEWELS, broadcasting on Saturday afternoons at 4 p.m. (4:30 NT) starting Sat. Sept. 11 on CBC Music and CBC Listen, taking listeners through stories and music that tie into a weekly theme – including love, death, rivalries, mistaken identities and more.
Also launching this month – THE Q INTERVIEW is a new podcast series with Tom Power, including some exclusive and extended content on CBC Listen on Fridays with new episodes available to stream weekly. An intimate look at big conversations with some of the most inspiring artists and creators of our time, THE Q INTERVIEW hosts some guests exclusively before they appear on the radio show, along with reflective commentary and extra content that doesn’t make it to air. The first three episodes of THE Q INTERVIEW are now available to stream on CBC Listen.