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Ted Libbey's Encyclopedic Knowledge

The NPR Listener's Encyclopedia of Classical Music.
The NPR Listener's Encyclopedia of Classical Music.
Hear the Interview

Longtime fans of Performance Today will know the name -- and recognize the chipper voice -- of Ted Libbey. For a dozen years, Libbey was Performance Today's primary authority on classical recordings, as curator of our "Basic Record Library." He wrote The NPR Guide to Building a Classical CD Collection, and oversaw the "PT 50" (our collection of 50 essential classical recordings) in 2002.

Libbey hasn't been on the air with us lately, because since 2003 he's been Director of Media Arts Programs at the National Endowment for the Arts. But he's poured his passion for classical music into creating the new NPR Listener's Encyclopedia of Classical Music. With the encyclopedia finally coming out this month, Libbey joins Fred Child to talk about the daunting task of writing the 928-page tome, the personal touches he brought to the encyclopedia, and the book's innovative companion website.

Copyright 2023 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.