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On-Air Programming Specials

From time to time we will offer special programming from NPR, holiday-themed shows, or extra local coverage in place of regular programs. Check this page to see what's changed in the schedule.

Thursday, 11/24 9:00 AM

How do you navigate the holidays when estranged from your family? What is the holiday season like when you're disconnected from your nuclear family? This special is about finding belonging when your family bonds are broken. Host Anita Rao meets two women who — by choice or circumstance — became estranged from their parents. Writer Raksha Vasudevan shares how being an immigrant shapes how she thinks about creating distance from her family, and Tiffany Scott talks about what it was like to be ghosted by her dad. The two reflect on finding belonging elsewhere and seeking support from non-traditional sources.

Thursday 11/24, 2 PM
100 Years of the BBC

In November of 1922, BBC radio first crackled into the homes of Londoners, who heard a brief news and weather report – read twice so listeners could take notes. Over the next century, the BBC would expand far beyond news and become one of the world’s preeminent forces in arts and cultural programming. Listeners will hear sound from reporters on the beaches during D-Day, Queen Elizabeth’s coronation, the rise of the Beatles, and popular BBC radio and television programs of the past – as well as a glimpse of the broadcaster behind the scenes through oral histories from producers who worked at the organization.

Friday 11/25, 9 AM
Constant Emergency

In stormy times, how do we find healing and meaning? We seem to have entered an age of unrelenting chaos. As humanity gropes for a “new normal”, have we reached a kind of inflection point? It feels that way — in the wake of the Covid pandemic, intensifying impacts of climate change, the war in Ukraine, mounting threats to our democracy, repeated mass shootings and so much more.

Sunday 12/18, 12 PM
Hanukkah Lights 2022

This NPR favorite returns with the best of the best Hanukkah Lights stories from the last 30 years. Hosted by Susan Stamberg and Murray Horwitz.

Friday 12/23, 9 AM
Kevin Gavin's All-Request Holiday Show

The annual tradition continues with Kevin playing seasonal favorites new and old, all based on listener requests. Make your request in advance using this form.

Friday 12/23, 1 PM
Christmas At Home with Hanif Abdurraqib

Join host Hanif Abdurraqib for a special episode of Object of Sound, taking a deep dive into the world of Christmas music. Whether you’re flooded with excitement and warm nostalgia at the first beat of ‘Jingle Bells,’ or desperately counting down the days until January, Christmas music is everywhere. From the tackiest tracks to the most moving melodies, join us to explore the soundtrack of the season. We’ll hear from special guests: musical duo She & Him, plus Song Exploder’s Hrishikesh Hirway. We'll also hear from listeners across the country who’ve called in to share their non-traditional Christmas traditions.

Friday 12/23, 8 PM
Holiday Season Stories of Warmth and Light

Native American myths and tales help us endure or even enjoy the short days and long nights of winter. Living on Earth’s annual celebration of stories helps connect people with the natural world and includes an Iroquois explanation of why the constellation Pleiades twinkles overhead and an Abenaki custom that asks forgiveness for any wrongs of the previous year. Seasonal stories and more.

Friday 12/23, 9 PM
Festivo Alt.Latino with Cantigas

Festivo Alt.Latino is a special holiday concert featuring the 20 piece choral ensemble Choral Cantigas. This musical performance also includes stories about holiday traditions and cultures. Hear a traditional Peruvian Christmas carol, folk music from Brazil, Spain, and Mexico plus Parrandas from Venezuela and Puerto Rico. The many rich styles of Latino choral music will unite listeners through the joyful and trans-formative power of music. Hosted by Felix Contreras.

Friday 12/23, 10 PM
Joy To The World – A Holiday in Pink

The internationally acclaimed “little orchestra" Pink Martini bedecks the airwaves with festive holiday songs from across the globe. From timeless classics to rarely heard gems, hear a multi-denominational, multi-cultural jubilee, overflowing with enough holiday spirit to warm your entire family. Hosted by All Things Considered’s Ari Shapiro.

Saturday 12/24, 12 PM
Tinsel Tales: NPR Christmas Favorites

This program features stories from the NPR archives that touch on the meaning of Christmas. David Sedaris, Bailey White, John Henry Faulk -- these and other NPR voices, past and present, tell stories of the season. Hosted by Lynn Neary.

Saturday 12/24, 8 PM
Jazz Piano Christmas

Check out your favorite holiday classics as you’ve never heard them! This year, our annual sell-out event spotlights ferociously talented Japanese musical phenom Hiromi, Bob Thompson, and Bolivian prodigy José André Montaño, chosen as one of the Kennedy Center’s “Next 50” leaders.

Saturday 12/24, 9 PM
Jazz Night In America: A Holiday Celebration

This year's Jazz Night in America holiday special will feature drummer Matt Wilson's Christmas Tree-O; a ruckus band recorded at Jazz at Lincoln Center that flip seasonal songs on their head while inserting humor and joyful swing. and new takes on classics in this special episode. Christian McBride hosts.

Sunday 12/25, 10 AM
Tinsel Tales 4: NPR Christmas Stories Told Through Song

NPR revisits interviews with musicians about their Christmas albums.Some, like Katie Melua and Sting, celebrate tradition and winter mystery in their Christmas songs. Others, like Kenny Rogers and Amy Grant, find spirituality and stability in holiday music. Jon Batiste and Anthony Hamilton bring new energy to old favorites on their Christmas albums. Hosted by Lynn Neary.

Sunday 12/25, 11 AM
An Afro Blue Christmas

Join us for a very special holiday concert with Howard University's premiere vocal ensemble Afro Blue and special guest pianist Cyrus Chestnut. Hear the acapella group perform a variety of holiday songs including African-American spirituals, jazz and pop tunes, and classical repertoire. The joyous celebration includes one of a kind arrangements on traditional holiday songs plus new compositions--music perfect for the holidays and the spirit of Christmas. Hosted by Michele Norris.

Sunday 12/25, 12 PM
Christmas with Morehouse and Spelman Glee Clubs

One of the great holiday traditions in America, the choirs of Morehouse and Spelman Colleges -- two of the most prestigious historically black institutions in the nation -- get together to present a spine-tingling concert program. This encore presentation features the best works of the last several years. It's a joyous celebration of the schools' tradition of singing excellence, with their trademark mixture of spirituals and carols. Korva Coleman hosts.

Monday 12/26, 9 AM
A Season’s Griot

A Season's Griot is public radio's only nationally syndicated Kwanzaa program. Hosted for 25 years by acclaimed storyteller Madafo Lloyd Wilson, this annual one-hour special captures the tales and traditions of African American and African peoples. The show’s poet laureate, Beverly Fields Burnette, and other members of the Season’s Griot family return with familiar and favorite elements of Griot.