NYC's Empire State Building Turns Blue For WQXR's 80th Anniversary

Friday, December 02, 2016 - 10:43 AM

On Saturday the Empire State Building will turn WQXR blue to celebrate our 80th birthday. On Saturday the Empire State Building will turn WQXR blue to celebrate our 80th birthday. (ESB Lighting Partner Team)

Since December of 1965, the WQXR transmitter has sent out its signal from atop the Empire State Building. Saturday, Dec. 3, the iconic Manhattan landmark will turn WQXR blue in honor of our 80 years of bringing the best classical music to New York City — and today all over the world. The lights will come on at sundown, which is around 4:29 pm.

If you're in the city, snap a photo of the Empire State Building on Saturday night and share it using #HappyBirthdayWQXR. If you're not in the city, you can watch the lighting live on our Facebook page.

And make sure you tune into WQXR at 4 pm on Saturday to hear the same works that aired on WQXR’s inaugural broadcast.

The Empire State Building image ® is a registered trademark of ESRT Empire State Building, L.L.C. and is used with permission.


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Comments [9]

Ron Offenkrantz from NYC

I too was born in 1936 and vividly recall my Dad listening to Qxr at home and in the car. I am a devoted listener to this date.

Dec. 06 2016 01:43 PM
Ellen L Lienhard from West Chester, PA

Have to comment again since Duncan Pirnie made my afternoon commute a joy and I never missed any of George Jellinek's World of Opera. These days I start with Jeff Spurgeon and try to be up for Bach at 7:30. Old School is another favorite.

Happy 80th Birthday and many more!

Dec. 05 2016 06:19 PM
John J. Christiano from Franklin NJ

I don't care how tall, how stainless, or how glassy we continue to build our NY buildings. None will ever equal the "personality" of the Empire State Building or the mighty and colorful ambiance it provides to the city.

I started seeking a lighter form of music when I was a pre-teen, listening to WPAT from Paterson, NJ. Then I "strayed" into rock n' roll as a teen and young adult. But my grandfather taught me Schubert's Serenade (Stanchen)on the organ and I was re-introduced to the classics. Been there ever since. Thanks Gramp!

Dec. 05 2016 08:36 AM
Ellen L Lienhard from West Chester, PA

I have been listening all my life and even before since my parents bought an FM radio the year of your founding and the radio was almost always playing. I was born in 1941 and attribute my lifelong love of classical music and especially opera to those many hours of listening. The Texaco Metropolitan Opera matinees were a ritual in our house.

Now I listen to from my home in Chester County,PA. May you continue for many more years.

Dec. 03 2016 08:43 PM
Roger Campbell from Brighton, Ontario CANADA

Believe it or not, I have been listening to your radio broadcasts since the late 1950's, first in Toronto East, and then in Eastern Ontario.
For some miraculous reason, your clear channel signal skipped to Ontario Canada. My dad and I listened to the AM band.. 1560 or thereabouts, and on our radio at the cottage. Thank you.. sometimes your signal was clearer than the CBC. I still listen , and congratulate you on your 80th anniversary. You have changed many lives during the years


Dec. 03 2016 05:47 PM
gioia weber from Morristown, NJ

One of my fondest memories of classical music from long ago, was listening as a child to The First Piano Quartet on Saturday mornings on WQXR. It was around 1944-1945 when I was 10 or 11. Their theme song was the Rhapsody on a theme of PAGANINI BY RACHMANINOFF. This program stimulated a life-long interest and delight in classical music which I treasure!

Dec. 03 2016 10:16 AM
Frank Lachmann from new York City

About 2 years after WQXR was founded, my parents and I, having fled from Nazi Germany, arrived in New York, My father became an accountant and would work on his ledgers at a table with me,on the other side, doing my homework. He discovered WQXR and it would be turned on all day. I think it was a connection to the cultural life we had been forced to leave behind and it became n ever-present part of our American life. WQXR still holds that important place in my life. I go to sleep with WQXR quietly in the background and wake up to WQXR, and when I am at home it's the only radio station to which my family and I listen

Dec. 03 2016 08:30 AM
Amy Kornfeld

I don't remember exactly when I started listening to WQXR – but it's been QUITE AWHILE!! But my most vivid and happy memories are listening to Duncan Pirnie. I always looked to forward to my drive home from work listening to Duncan. It always felt like I was listening to a good friend. What a wonderful announcer he was – witty, charming, intelligent – and that beautiful, mellifluous voice! I miss him terribly!!

Dec. 03 2016 08:14 AM
Mary Heller from Poughkeepsie, NY

We first discovered WQXR in 1958. We were newly married and my husband, just ordained was assigned to a Lutheran church in the Bronx. We were both raised in the midwest and NYC was an exciting new adventure. To our delight, our little AM radio picked up heavenly music at 1560 AM.....which was our introduction to WQXR. We "graduated" to better receivers but the dial has followed WQXR from 96.3 FM to 105.9 to our upstate 103.7. Thank you WQXR for EXCELLENCE!

Dec. 02 2016 11:38 PM

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