Performance Today features the best live performance recordings from concerts halls around the world, as well as in-studio performances and interviews with an eclectic mix of guests.

Hosted by Fred Child, this daily, two-hour program is frequently on the road, with special broadcasts from festivals and public radio stations around the country. Each year, Performance Today airs around 1,400 live performance recordings. Performance Today is available as a weekday show (M-F) or weekend offering (Performance Today Weekend).

In addition to sharing great performances, Fred and composer Bruce Adolphe test listeners with a weekly Piano Puzzler, and PT's Young Artist in Residence program shines the spotlight on young soloists from American conservatories. Previous young artists have represented a variety of music schools and students, including pianists Orli Shaham, Jeremy Denk, and Jonathan Biss, guitarist Jason Vieaux, and violinist Colin Jacobsen.


Fred Child




Kathryn Slusher, Sr Producer
Jeanne Barron, Technical Producer
Meghann Oglesby, Producer
Kathleen Bradbury and Jon Gohman, Associate Producers

On-Air Promos

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Underwriting Audience Insights

Performance Today is heard by over 700,000 listeners each week.*

The Performance Today audience:

  • 52% female, 48% male.
  • Median age of 67, with 22% between 25 and 54.
  • 74% hold bachelor's degrees or higher.
  • 48% have an annual household income of $75,000 or more.

*Source: ACT1 Systems based on Nielsen Audio Nationwide DMA P12+ Audience Estimates, Spring 2022

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Station Visits

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Fred Child

Fred Child is the host Performance Today, the most-listened-to classical music radio show in America. Fred is also the commentator and announcer for Live from Lincoln Center on PBS, the only live performing arts series on television. He also co-hosted Carnegie Live, a three-year series of national broadcasts from America's premier concert venue. Fred has hosted numerous live national broadcasts, including significant events from New York, Los Angeles, London, Boston, and the Aspen Festival.

Fred also hosted NPR's Creators @ Carnegie, a program of wide-ranging performers in concert, including Brian Wilson, David Byrne, Dawn Upshaw, and many others. Before going to NPR, Fred was Music Director and Director of Cultural Programming at WNYC in New York, host of a live daily performance and interview program on WNYC, and for 10 years, a host at Oregon Public Broadcasting.

Fred has reviewed music for NPR's All Things Considered, and has reported on the music scene for NPR's Morning Edition and Weekend Edition. He's been a contributor to Billboard magazine, and a commentator and co-presenter for BBC Radio 3.

He made his acting debut in a performance and video collaboration with composer Philip Glass and violinist Timothy Fain in 2011, and has performed as an actor and narrator for the Aspen Festival, the Virginia Arts Festival, the U.S. Marine Band, and on a best-selling 2016 recording of Stravinsky's Soldier's Tale.

While growing up in Portland, Oregon, Fred studied classical piano. He also dabbles in guitar, percussion, and the bagpipes. His percussion band opened for the Grateful Dead at the Oakland Coliseum. His rare musical performances include percussion with guitarist Sharon Isbin, and piano four-hands duets with Andre-Michel Schub.

Fred loves baseball (throws right, bats left) and is an avid hiker, climber, skier, cyclist, and a licensed private pilot and certified scuba diver.

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Air Window & Program Feeds

Performance Today is available via ContentDepot.

Air Window: Weekdays, 6:00 AM ET - following day 12:00 PM ET

Performance Today Weekend is available via ContentDepot.

Air Window: Friday 6:00 AM ET - Monday 12:00 PM ET

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Broadcast Rights

Full broadcast rights for this program can be viewed and downloaded here. Prior to carrying this series, stations must confirm carriage with American Public Media.

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