Michael Latsko’s Christmas gift to WTJU
Time: 6:00 pm - 7:00 pm
Longtime classical host Michael Latsko brings his time at WTJU to a close on Sunday, December 25, with one final King of Instruments. For those keeping score, Michael will have hosted his weekly program 1,396 times over an almost 30 year span.
Michael Latsko first heard the sound of organ music on WTJU’s airwaves back in the early 1980’s as an undergraduate student. Over phone, Michael “met” Scott Brown, a PhD student who was the DJ behind “The King of Instruments.” About 10 years later Michael relocated back to Cville, friends approached him about programing a show of pipe organ music for the December 1992 classical marathon. Latsko whipped up a cool 4 hours of music which was, perhaps surprisingly, financially successful. The classical director “offered” Michael a one-hour time slot on Sunday evening to resurrect “The King of Instruments,” which took to the airwaves in June 1993. Michael thought, “this will be fun to do for a year or two.” And now almost 1,400 shows and nearly 30 years later, the reverberation of pipes will come to an end, at least for Latsko, as he picks up and moves across the country to take up his new position as Vice President & Chief HR Officer for Arizona State University. “It’s a big job,” so I won’t have time for a radio show or a job as church organist and choir director (Latsko has served Grace Church in Keswick for 15 years and another church in Charlottesville for 15 years before that). “As I said when I had my 1000th show,” Latsko recounted “I’ve hosted The King of Instruments longer than I’ve done anything in my life, except maybe breathing.” Latsko has had fun beyond his wildest imaginings and has interviewed countless of notes organists over the years. “I will miss it, there is no doubt,” Latsko reflected, “but the time has come.”
Tune in for Latsko’s 2-hour Mega King of Instruments program for the Classical Marathon on Sunday, Dec. 11 at 5pm and his final show on Christmas Day, December 25 at 6pm.