When John Landecker invited me to be on his show on WLS 890AM earlier this year, I had no idea he would be so generous with his time. I expected I would be on air maybe five minutes max to talk about OperaGram.com®! But he interviewed me and we were cracking up for almost one-half hour.
I had listened to him when I was a little girl and loved his speaking voice, quick wit and antics. As an adult, I tune in when I can and find him to be incredibly intelligent and open. When his “State of the State” segment with Judy Barr Topinka aired on WLS, I appreciated his objectivity, sense of balance, clarity, respect and restraint – particulary when speaking with the folks who called in with the premise of discussing politics only to attack him and/or other people versus critically exploring issues.
I wanted to find a meaningful way of thanking him for having had me on his show. When listening to his show, I scanned for cues. He frequently spoke with great affection for his father, a sociology professor at University of Michigan.
I searched and pieced together a great deal of information on Werner S. Landecker. I found that his 1936 dissertation – completed in Berlin during a time when it was not safe for Jews to be there – was published in 1999. The more I read about the man, the more I admired him.
It took some time, but I tracked down a copy of the dissertation entitled Die Geltung des Völkerrechts als gesellschaftliches Phänomen: eine rechts- und sozialwissenschaftliche Analyse aus dem Jahr 1936. I only regret I could not find an English version of the text. I hope a translation is in the works.
I sent the book to John at WLS. I’d been busy supporting my mother as she battled a life-threatening illness, at rehearsals for a staged reading, at rehearsals for the Lyric season and preparing for a Lyric Opera season preview concert for the International Friendship Gardens in Michigan City, Indiana. So I had not known that John had talked about having received the book on his show.
I sent a text message to him after a few weeks had passed just to make sure he had received the book. Not only did he leave a lovely voice mail, but called while on air on WIMS AM 1420 in Michigan City to talk to me about the press release IFG had sent to the station about our concert in Michigan City. He had me sing something from the concert. I chose the opening passages to “Vissi d’arte” from Puccini’s Tosca. My dear little singing Bichon howled along!
I’ve been involved with the concerts in Michigan City – either organizing or singing or both – since 2007. He could not attend this year because he was going to be out of town for his nephew’s wedding. I hope to be invited back next year and that John will be able to hear us ;).
John has a syndicated show on WLS called “Into the Seventies” and can also be heard on WIMS Monday through Friday from 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. with Paula Griffin. I tune in when I can through their live feed at http://www.wimsradio.com.
As a side note: Whether you are an aspiring radio professional or an aspiring professional anything, John has some wise advice. Courtesy of Dan O’Day (http://www.danoday.com), listen below: