SAN DIEGO — With its return to classical music today, KPBS-FM (89.5) has retained much of its news and information programming such as National Public Radio's "Morning Edition" (4-9 a.m.) and "All Things Considered" (5-6:30 p.m.). The big change is the classical music, which replaces six hours of daily local information programming, which has been mostly consolidated into a 30-minute show that airs at 4:30 p.m weekdays.
The shift in format has moved KPBS to a 24-hour operation. Formerly, the station signed off at midnight. Now, from 11 p.m. to 4 a.m. it will air "Music Through the Night," a satellite-fed program of classical music from NPR.
During the day, listeners will hear primarily music that isn't played on KFSD-FM (94.1), the city's commercial classical station, according to KPBS disc jockey Dan Irwin. Irwin worked for 17 years as a disc jockey at KFSD--until this week.
"I was burned out on KFSD specifically and commercial radio generally," Irwin said of the move to KPBS. "I wanted a program with--what do you say?--more artistic freedom, a little more variety . . . and the pay and benefits are better."
KPBS will play fewer overtures, Irwin said. "They're into overtures and waltzes in a major way (at KFSD)," he said. KPBS will have less light classical and more meaty fare.
"Unless a piece is really long, we'll play the entire work," Irwin said, " . . . a little more appeal to the intellect and not entirely to the emotions."
Irwin and David Arnold, formerly with Philadelphia's public station KHYY, will preside over the classical programming, which will offer aficionados more vocal music, including lieder and opera; Renaissance music; music for solo instruments such as organ and harpsichord, and eventually more contemporary music.