Culture
4:03 pm
Mon February 17, 2014

WKMS Listener Reflects on "An Evening with Ira Glass"

We received a very nice letter from WKMS listener Rachel English, reflecting on her visit to Nashville Saturday night (February 15) to see "Reinventing Radio: An Evening with Ira Glass" at the Ryman Auditorium. Thanks to Rachel for letting us share her letter. We're happy to hear it was a fun and inspiring evening!

Letter from Rachel:

Thanks to the generosity of WKMS and my lucky streak last week, I was drawn to win two tickets to “Reinventing Radio: An Evening With Ira Glass” at the Ryman Auditorium on Saturday, February 15th. It was an easy decision to invite my mother, Barbara Williams, to accompany me to the show. My parents have been longtime supporters of WKMS and I knew she would be as excited as I was about the opportunity to hear our favorite NPR rock star speak at “the mother church of country music.”

His performance was wholly wonderful and totally inspiring. Glass enthusiastically spoke to the audience about the importance of “compelling stories and relatable characters” in successful narrative journalism. He also discussed the intimacy of radio, humorous censorship laws, the beauty of visually undistracted storytelling, and highlighted several captivating audio clips from This American Life. Glass, in his handsome charcoal suit, glided around the stage, which was empty except for a music stand and a bottle of water on the floor. He dramatically moved his hands around as he spoke. Glass held an iPad and expressively tapped, poked, and swiped the screen to control audio clips and music that accompanied his presentation.  

The show lasted two hours, which ended with a fifteen minute Q&A with the audience. After the house lights came up and he looked around the grand auditorium, Glass chose about five people whose hands had been diligently raised. The last lucky lady’s question to be chosen was Murray’s very own Rebecca Feldhaus-Adams. I thought their dialogue wrapped up the evening perfectly: It centered on of one of Glass’s most well-known and popular quotations in which he speaks about people whose creations are, at first, “not that good,” and how we must not give up. We must keep creating – whatever the creation may be! How we must work to “close that gap, and your work will be as good as your ambitions.” All in all, An Evening with Ira Glass was entertaining, stimulating, thought-provoking, and downright funny.  

Thanks again, WKMS!