Alan Farley

In Memoriam (1936-2012):  KALW lost an important voice for the arts in the Bay Area, our senior announcer, Alan Farley, in October of 2012.  Alan’s diagnosis and subsequent passing of pancreatic and liver cancer was sudden, and a shock to all of us here at KALW. 

Alan Farley was born in Idaho in 1936 and spent his formative years in Seattle, though he finished his high school career in Southern California in 1953.  Farley attended Caltech as a mathematics undergrad, and went on to pursue graduate degrees at the University of Michigan and the University of California, Berkeley.  He served as Chairman of the Mathematics Department at Morehouse College in Atlanta from 1964-1969.  He has also been a faculty member at Merritt College.

As a music aficionado, Farley served as guide and head guide to the Boston Symphony Orchestra's Berkshire Music Festival during the summers of 1958, '59 and '60.  He's also been a Road Manager to Richard Pryor.

And as a radio lover, Alan has been a volunteer and staff member at KPFA, until he transitioned to KALW in 1975, where he was founding host and producer of Book Talk, My Favorite Things, Open Air, Explorations in Music, the Berkeley Symphony broadcasts and various performing arts specials, and continues to provide a "Noel Coward Entr'acte" between My Word! & My Music each Friday evening at 8:30.

You can find information about all of Alan's programs in 2012 below.  Click here for information about his shows from 2011 and before.



Fri March 16, 2012
I Love to Rhyme

I Love to Rhyme: The Lyrics of Ira Gershwin 16 March

Ira Gershwin

This time Alan Farley and Gershwin biographer Philip Furia consider "The Firebrand of Florence," the musical that Ira created with Kurt Weill, based on the life of Benvenuto Cellini.



Song of the Hangman

Come to Florence

My Lords and Ladies

There Was Life, There Was Love, There Was Laughter

You're Far Too Near Me

Alessandro the Wise

Sing Me Not a Ballad

I Know Where There's a Cozy Nook


Wed March 14, 2012
Book Talk

Book Talk March 18, 2012

Bart Schneider

Alan talks with Bart Schneider about his latest novel, "Nameless Dame - Murder on the Russian River."


Tue March 13, 2012
Open Air March 15

Open Air March 15

Jeremy Denk

Alan talks with pianist Jeremy Denk, who is playing a featured role in the san Francisco Symphony's American mavericks Festival, performing music of Henry Cowell and Lukas Foss. He also talks with Russell Blackwood, Artistic Director of Thrillpeddlers, about their revival of "Hot Greeks," the 1972 Cockettes'  musical comedy.


Sat March 10, 2012
Book Talk

Book Talk March 11, 2012

T. C. Boyle

Alan talks with author T. C. Boyle about his latest novel, "When the Killing Is Done."


Wed March 7, 2012
Open Air March 8

Open Air March 8

Alan talks with composer and performer Meredith Monk, who is participating in the San Francisco Symphony American Mavericks Festival, and with Michael Gene Sullivan, who is directing "Julius Caesar" for the African American Shakespeare Company. Dianne Keogh also stops by to talk about some recent cultural events.