© 2023 Cincinnati Public Radio
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
Available On Air Stations

Kelly Hale Recognized at 2022 Voices of Giving Celebration

Behint the Mic header.jpg

Dr. Kelly Hale is a lifelong listener and forty-year supporter of Cincinnati Public Radio and 90.9 WGUC. Cincinnati Public Radio nominated Kelly for the 2022 Voices of Giving honors. In June, he was selected and recognized.

Voices of Giving 2022 - Kelly Hale Honored - CPR WGUC - Kelly.jpg

“It's so important to have a station like WGUC when you are a musician and your life is in the arts, because it is an affirmation of that professional life and that professional world,” says Kelly.

“There are plenty of stations that affirm so many other aspects of life and to have WGUC as an arts beacon on the airwaves is really important for those of us who live in the arts world and perform in the arts world, as well as audience members who enjoy the arts world.”

An educator at the University of Texas and University of Cincinnati, Kelly joined the CCM faculty in 1976 and served as professor of opera and coaching for 3 decades. While at UC, Kelly established the opera coaching program and even served a stint as interim chair of the opera department.

Kelly has shared his own personal music and Cincinnati experiences with WGUC listeners through modules he affectionately calls “WGUC Moments.”

Listen to one of Kelly's "WGUC's Moments"

“Music was in my home, and I was maybe 10 or 12 years old when I realized I can't do anything else but music in my life, it's the most important thing.”

Though he retired from teaching at CCM in 2008, a 57-year position performing church music in 2011, and a 40-year tenure with a music festival in Northern Michigan in 2018, Kelly can't seem to do "retirement" right.

Kelly Hale and Family (Cincinnati Public Radio Honoree).jpg

"In 2015, I was contacted by a former student who was in an emergency situation and needed a pianist for his concert film tour, "Bugs Bunny at the Symphony." So, I jumped right in."

He's now played these concerts with 28 different orchestras on two continents.

"These early Warner Brothers cartoons were filled with classical music. The only thing is it's two or three times faster than you normally hear it on WGUC. And that keeps us all on our toes!"

Kelly Hale - Peforming (Cincinnati Public Radio Honoree).jpg

Kelly joined the station’s Ransohoff Legacy Society when he shared his decision to include WGUC in his will.

“I have always thought that leaving something for WGUC in my estate planning was the right thing to do because it has been so incredibly important in my life, and I value it so very highly. When I needed to revise my will, it was something that I saw as very important to do – a sort of a legacy that I hope will help in keeping WGUC not only going, but expanding, and finding as many new ways as can be found in this 21st century of putting its mission forward.”

Listen to Kelly as he shares how he discovered WGUC (and met Erich Kunzel)

Thanks to Kelly, the programming on WGUC he loves, appreciates and counts-on will continue and be expanded upon for generations to come.

“The most important thing is for WGUC to stay on the air, and to stay on the air now and tomorrow and in the next decade. And then in the next century. And keep classical music alive and well, and an option for anybody that is spinning the dial. I don't know if we're going to be listening in the same ways that we are now, but I know that we'll always need to hear classical music,” say Kelly.

Voices of Giving 2022 - Kelly Hale Honored - CPR WGUC - Group.jpg

“I would say to those people that have been listening for a long time and they know that it's important to them: ‘Go ahead and make that planned gift to WGUC, and you'll know that you're helping to perpetuate that wonderful quality of life that WGUC gives us day in, day out.’”

Learn how you can create your own public radio legacy.