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Woman With Rochester Ties To Host Radio Broadcasts Of The Metropolitan Opera

Jonathan Tichler/Metropolitan Opera

A woman with connections to the Rochester area, including WXXI, has been chosen to become just the fourth full-time radio host in the history of the Metropolitan Opera Saturday broadcasts.

Mary Jo Heath was a senior radio producer for the Met for the past nine years. She also anchored the majority of last season’s broadcasts when host Margaret Juntwait became ill. Juntwait passed away in June.

Heath got her first experience working with the Met broadcast more than 30 years ago when she got a part-time job at WXXI while studying at the Eastman School of Music. Heath ran the equipment at the radio station during the Saturday afternoon Metropolitan Opera broadcasts.

The Saturday matinee radio broadcasts have been on since 1931.

Heath will officially take the new role with the Met this fall. The broadcasts start up again in early December on Classical 91.5 on Saturdays at 1:00 p.m.

Randy Gorbman is WXXI's director of news and public affairs. Randy manages the day-to-day operations of WXXI News on radio, television, and online.