Who's at the Center? Graham Parker

18 Jun 2013


Graham Parker. Photo courtesy of WQXR.

In June 2013, the Center welcomed Graham Parker, the general manager and vice president of New York's all-classical station WQXR, the most listened to classical radio in the country. Parker participated in a brainstorming session with members of the Center's New Spaces / New Formats research group, and also shared with constituents several case studies of unique performance presentation.

Over the past two years, Graham Parker has overseen and implemented an ambitious growth plan that puts WQXR front and center in New York's thriving classical music scene. While serving WQXR's loyal fan base with long-established programs like Exploring Music and Young Artist Showcase, the station has cultivated new audiences by integrating on air offerings with live events and digital media. During Parker's tenure, WQXR has launched a new national series, Carnegie Hall Live, pioneered critically acclaimed festivals including Beethoven Awareness Month, and presented a broad range of events in the Jerome L. Greene Performance Space featuring artists from Lang Lang to Rufus Wainwright. Parker has secured WQXR's role as a leading digital music source, with the growth of Q2Music, a channel dedicated to contemporary classical music, and in January 2012, the launch of Operavore, WQXR's 24/7 digital opera stream.

Prior to joining WQXR, Parker was the executive director of Orpheus Chamber Orchestra. In 2009, he was given the Helen M. Thompson Award by the League of American Orchestras. Parker has also served as the general manager of the Brooklyn Philharmonic, and he has held positions with the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center and the New York Philharmonic. Born in London, Parker holds a BSc (Hons) from Oxford Brookes University. He started his musical training on flute and piano, eventually taking up conducting in college. Parker serves on the board of the Knights and he is a member of an advisory group to the president of Purchase College.