Freelance veteran radio producer and avid world traveler Jesse McQuarters produces the broadcast series for the Chicago Symphony Orchestra as well as some of the most widely-heard, internationally syndicated series on the WFMT Radio Network. Jesse came to WFMT after receiving degrees in double bass performance and audio engineering at Indiana University, Bloomington. In addition to having produced the award-winning, flagship program of the WFMT Radio Network, Exploring Music, Jesse is also the founding producer of the internationally-syndicated program Relevant Tones, the first ongoing syndicated radio series in the United States dedicated to new music and living composers.
As a radio producer and as a musician, Jesse has made it his mission to investigate the role of music in providing cultural identity while also providing a universal constant of humanity. His work has taken him to Russia, where he climbed the bell towers of Vladimirskaya Cathedral to interview the ringers who call the worshippers to service, and Sweden, where he learned the nyckelharpa and talked with Sami musicians about reindeer herding and joik singing.
Jesse has also had the pleasure of interviewing senators and ambassadors, driving in the presidential motorcade with the Obama family after Mr. Obama won re-election in 2012, recording Indian ragas in the cisterns of Jerusalem, taping the morning call to prayer after sleeping under the stars in a Bedouin community in the Negev Desert, and interviewing Irina Shostakovich in the Moscow apartment she shared with her husband, Dmitri.
Jesse's credits as a producer also include programs with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, the New York Philharmonic, Yo-Yo Ma & the Silk Road Ensemble, Lang Lang, Gustavo Dudamel, the Mendelssohn Project, the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra, the Chicago Chamber Musicians, the Gilmore Keyboard Festival, the Ravinia Festival, Northwestern University, Gabriela Montero, James Conlon, and more.