WFMT / The WFMT Radio Network’s Relevant Tones and host Seth Boustead are honored with an ASCAP Foundation Deems Taylor/Virgil Thomson Award for Radio Broadcast


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CHICAGO – November 16, 2016 – WFMT, Chicago’s classical and fine arts radio station and The WFMT Radio Network announced that Relevant Tones and creator/host Seth Boustead have been honored with a 2016 ASCAP Foundation Deems Taylor/Virgil Thomson Radio Broadcast Award, “for outstanding print, broadcast, and new media coverage of music.” The winners were selected by a four-person panel from ASCAP (The American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers).

Relevant Tones, which premiered in 2011, airs on WFMT and via live streaming on on Saturdays at 10:00 pm and is syndicated throughout the country on 127 stations by WFMT Radio Network. In this engaging 60-minute series, host Seth Boustead focuses on the dynamic and diverse musical creations of modern-day composers from around the world. It is one of the nation’s only classical music programs devoted to contemporary music, and provides extensive coverage of emerging artists and genres on the international new music scene.

“I’m thrilled to receive this prestigious award for my work with Relevant Tones,” said Boustead. “It’s a fantastic honor for me personally, but also an important recognition of the incredible creativity and diversity of today’s global contemporary classical music scene,” he added. “It’s truly a privilege for Relevant Tones and Seth Boustead to be acknowledged by the ASCAP Foundation,” said series producer Sarah Zwinklis. “Because of his loyalty and enthusiasm, Relevant Tones is dedicated to shining a spotlight on the work of these artists both nationally and internationally. We look forward to discovering more wonderful music.”

In addition to featuring interviews with many of today’s most important contemporary classical music composers and performers, Relevant Tones has built a reputation for traveling to music festivals around the globe to seek out new trends in contemporary classical music. In recent years the program has visited China, Ireland, Korea, Mexico, The Netherlands, Poland among others countries in search of the most exciting trends in contemporary classical music. Relevant Tones has also built a reputation for producing unique live events and partnering with important organizations such as the New York Philharmonic, National Sawdust, the Ear Taxi Festival and others.

The complete list of winners of the 48th annual ASCAP Foundation Deems Taylor/Virgil Thomson Awards is here.

About Seth Boustead
Seth Boustead is a composer, radio host, arts manager and writer, concert producer, in-demand speaker and visionary with the goal of revolutionizing how and where classical music is performed and how it is perceived by the general public.  His music is regularly performed across the United States and in Europe, and has been heard on radio and television stations in Chicago, San Francisco, New York and Paris among others and his orchestra piece This Point Forward was a finalist for the American Prize in 2012. He is also the founder and Executive Director of Access Contemporary Music, an organization that exists to present classical music as a living tradition by performing new works in innovative ways for new audiences, providing community-based education, and collaborating with composers from around the world.

About WFMT and the WFMT Radio Network
WFMT is one of the nation’s most respected classical music radio stations, available on-air at WFMT, online at, and via app on Apple and Android mobile devices. WFMT showcases superlative programs, concerts, and live events you cannot hear anywhere else – broadcasts from the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, the Lyric Opera of Chicago, the Metropolitan Opera, the Santa Fe Chamber Music Festival, and many more. The WFMT Radio Network is a leading producer and syndicator of a diverse selection of outstanding fine arts series, including Exploring Music with Bill McGlaughlin, the Beethoven Network, and the Jazz Network. Connect with WFMT on Facebook and Twitter.

About The ASCAP Foundation
Founded in 1975, The ASCAP Foundation is a charitable organization dedicated to supporting American music creators and encouraging their development through music education and talent development programs. Included in these are songwriting workshops, grants, scholarships, awards, recognition and community outreach programs, and public service projects for senior composers and lyricists. The ASCAP Foundation is supported by contributions from ASCAP members and from music lovers throughout the United States.

About the Virgil Thomson Foundation
The purpose of the Virgil Thomson Foundation is to further and promote the performance, preservation, dissemination and public appreciation of serious music in general and the music and writings of Virgil Thomson in particular.