Toledo SymphonyLab™ Receives 2019 Touchstone Award

Published Friday, October 18, 2019 9:00 am

The Press Club of Toledo awarded Toledo SymphonyLab™ the 2019 Touchstone Award for Excellence in Journalism in the Radio-Show/Series category at its annual awards ceremony Wednesday evening at the Toledo Club. Toledo Symphony Lab™ is now a two-time recipient of this prestigious award.  Last year, Toledo SymphonyLab™ received the Touchstone Award for excellence in the Broadcast Radio category.

"Toledo SymphonyLab™ celebrates everything TSO has to offer in the way of cultural enrichment for our community and beyond,” says Brad Cresswell, WGTE Radio Program Manager and SymphonyLAB host. “It's an honor to be able to tell the remarkable stories behind the music and to receive recognition for doing so, alongside some of the best journalists in our city. As we continue to look to the future, this award re-affirms the pride we take in the close partnership between TSO and WGTE.”

 Toledo SymphonyLab™ is a radio podcast series produced by WGTE Public Media in collaboration with the Toledo Symphony Orchestra (TSO), providing a weekly, half hour behind-the-scenes look at the world of classical music.

WGTE’s FM 91 host Brad Cresswell, joined by TSO panelists Zak Vassar (President & CEO), Alain Trudel (Music Director), Merwin Siu (Principal Second Violinist and Artistic Administrator), and Felecia Kanney (Director of Marketing), brings a pop culture aesthetic to the storied world of classical music with lively discussions, quizzes, and audio “re-enactments” of historical events.

“Now in its third season, Toledo SymphonyLab™ has become a wonderful opportunity to speak directly to our audience, put stuffiness aside, laugh a lot, and reveal our love for the performing arts,” says Vassar. “We are fortunate in this great city to have exceptional community leaders, like WGTE, who can help us all share the good work we do. We are honored to have also been a part of BCAN’s Brigette Burnett’s feature on our work with the Lucas County Youth Treatment Center. These are some examples of recent partnerships, and we are grateful.”

The podcast often features special appearances by TSO musicians, guest soloists, and community members. Past guests have included 13abc’s Tony Geftos, BGSU musicologist Effie Papanikolaou, and famed local astrologer Janet Amid. Episodes air on FM 91 on Wednesdays at 3:30 PM, and all previous episodes in their entirety can be found online at

The next episode of Toledo SymphonyLab™ will air on Wednesday, October 23, 2019 at 3:30 PM. For more information, or to listen to the podcast, please visit


WGTE Public Media is a non-profit organization and a center of learning and education for northwest Ohio and southeast Michigan. Founded as an educational institute in 1953, education remains at the heart of what we do every day. From our entertaining, informative and educational programs that air on WGTE TV, FM 91, and to our professional development opportunities for K-12 teachers and preschool day care providers, WGTE helps to make northwest Ohio and southeast Michigan a better place to live.


The Toledo Symphony Orchestra is a community-supported organization of professional musicians and teachers who deliver quality performance and music education for all.

Formed in 1943 as The Friends of Music and incorporated in 1951 as the Toledo Orchestra Association, Inc., the Toledo Symphony Orchestra (TSO) has grown from a core group of twenty-two part-time musicians to a regional orchestra that employs sixty-nine professional musicians who consider the Toledo Symphony their primary employer, as well as numerous extra players annually as repertoire demands.

On January 1, 2019, the Toledo Symphony and Toledo Ballet officially merged to form the Toledo Alliance for the Performing Arts (TAPA), a new non-profit organization dedicated to providing exceptional live music and dance performances and education for the region. This partnership promises to create new and invigorating programs, provide cost and revenue synergies in operations, and integrate the arts through shared educational missions.

The Toledo Symphony reaches more than 260,000 individuals annually through performances and education programs. The series concerts (Masterworks, Pops, Chamber, Mozart in the Afternoon, and Family Series) are the critical underpinning of the orchestra’s artistic mission and regularly draw people from 135 postal zip codes. Education programs, student performances, and community concerts are held in schools, neighborhood churches, performing arts centers, and community facilities throughout the region; many are offered at no charge or provided at a reduced fee to help expand participation.

The Toledo Symphony Orchestra has events all year round. View our upcoming performance schedule now.

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