One of the more quizzical aspects of Central Kentucky public radio is coming to an end. For years, WEKU-88.9 FM has been the area's classical-music outlet. But the Saturday afternoon broadcasts of Metropolitan Opera productions have been carried by WUKY-91.3 FM, which otherwise programs adult rock and talk.
The Met broadcasts are finally making the move down the dial to WEKU, starting at 1:30 p.m. Dec. 8 with Christoph Willibald Gluck's Iphigenie en Tauride starring Placido Domingo as Orest and Susan Graham as Iphigenie, and conducted by Louis Langree.
On Dec. 15, the broadcast is Charles Gounod's Romeo et Juliette, with Anna Netrebko and Roberto Alagna in the title roles, and Domingo conducting. That 1 p.m. performance also will be the first of eight high-definition broadcasts to movie theaters this year. In Central Kentucky, the broadcasts will be at the Regal Hamburg Pavilion 16, Cinemark Lexington Green Movies 8 and Cinemark Richmond Mall Movies 8 cinemas. Click here for a complete list of broadcasts, and for theaters and tickets to the opera showings, click here .
The roadblock to WEKU presenting the Met in the past has been that the station is obliged to carry Eastern Kentucky University football and basketball. In the past, the Met has said affiliates must carry all broadcasts. This season, the opera relented, although there is only one EKU sports conflict on the calendar: Feb. 2, when the opera will be Richard Wagner's Die Walkure. That's a pretty big kahuna to miss, but station manager Roger Duvall says WEKU's Web site will provide links to stations presenting that performance.