When the Yankees Sponsored Symphonies on WQXR

Email a Friend

From the New York Public Radio archives comes this gem: In 1947, WQXR signed on the New York Yankees to sponsor an hour of symphonic music every afternoon in an attempt to lure baseball fans to classical music.

The New York Times, the station's former owner, reported on the development:

“The New York Yankees Baseball Club will sponsor a program of symphonic music every afternoon during the regular baseball season over WQXR…The decision of Col. Larry MacPhail, club president, to the present symphonic program was said to be part of a plan to emphasize the important place of baseball in American life and to recruit new 'fans' for the game. Present plans call for the reading of the score of the day’s Yankee game in the course of Symphonic Matinee, it was said…" (March 19, 1947, pg. 1)

"Symphonic Matinee" was heard daily from 4-5 pm, throughout the 26-week baseball season. Its goal was to "present the very best in symphonic music."

The Yankees went on to finish with a record of 97-57 and win the World Series in 1947, defeating the Brooklyn Dodgers in seven games.