Westmoreland Symphony Orchestra Celebrates The Opening Of Its 50th Season

Oct 5, 2018

The Westmoreland Symphony Orchestra opens its “Celebrate 50” season next Saturday, marking 50 years in Greensburgh, Pa. 

Executive director Endicott Reindl and artistic director Daniel Meyer talk about the WSO's longevity, fan favorites from the past and the challenges of existing right next door to Pittsburgh. Its golden anniversary season will feature 14-year-old pianist Maxim Lando, who famously played as Lang-Lang’s left hand at Carnegie Hall and with the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra, plus Chee-Yun, an accomplished violinist with an instrument more than 300 years old.

Then-Pittsburgh Mayor Tom Murphy talks to city council members on April 2, 2004. Murphy now travels as a consultant, including speaking engagements with current city leadership, working with cities struggling to recover from the decline of an industrial base.
Credit John Heller / AP

Elsewhere in the program, former Pittsburgh Mayor Tom Murphy talks about how his tenure informs present-day Pittsburgh. Murphy, who served from 1994 to 2006, spent much of his leadership aggressively pursuing development and other deals that might help set Pittsburgh on a path to self-sufficiency after a swift industrial decline.

Of current Mayor Bill Peduto, Murphy says the two represent vastly different cities.

“I was trying to figure out how we were managing decline and how to grow Pittsburgh and Bill [Peduto] is trying to manage the problems of growth, [like] affordable housing, and we were giving away houses in 1994.”  

In the final installment of Keystone Crossroads’ No Justice For All series, WHYY's Annette John-Hall tells the story of a community-based public defender’s program in Philadelphia trying to help those charged with crimes better navigate the criminal justice system.

90.5 WESA’s Bill O’Driscoll reports one long-time arts group suspended its operations this week. The Silk Screen Asian-American Film Festival shuttered amid allegations of sexual harassment against its executive director, Harish Saluja. Note: This story contains details and language that may be upsetting to some.

And in an exclusive interview with WESA on Thursday, attorney Michael Avenatti told editor Chris Potter that the recent FBI investigation of U.S. Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh is an “absolute joke,” because agents did not reach out to his client or witnesses who could help corroborate her allegations.

The Confluence, where the news comes together, is 90.5 WESA’s daily news program. Tune in weekdays at 9 a.m. to hear newsmakers and innovators join veteran journalist Kevin Gavin, taking an in-depth look at stories important to the Pittsburgh region. Find more episodes of The Confluence here.