The Spark

Friday 6:20pm

The Spark is WMRA's own creative look at --well-- creativity. We dig into whatever people are passionate about in the WMRA region: sculpture, model railroading, costume-making, poetry, whatever.

Please note that while we no longer produce The Spark as a full-length program (due to Martha Woodroof's retirement), her interviews continue to appear within our Friday broadcast of All Things Considered.

We want to hear from those who are doing artsy or interesting or wonderful or obsessive things.  We also recognize that lots of creatives are a tad shy and might not ever speak up for themselves. 

You can put something on our radar about yourself or can tell us about someone you know of who might be interesting by sending an e-mail to the show host, Martha Woodroof:
WoodroMH@jmu.edu
(To launch an email to Martha automatically click here. )

Scroll down to hear past segments.

Consider this a community-wide celebration of the many people among us who invest time, energy and discipline into pushing against life's boundaries.

Listen to a typical 2012 version of the show's end credits (including Martha asking to hear from those who know about creative goings-on) : here (60 seconds).

2013 Spark intern Julia Skinner has been tasked with blogging about potentially Spark-worthy peers, and you can find the link to that blog on this page.

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The Spark
8:16 pm
Thu June 6, 2013

Martha's Hollywood Near-Miss

"Cut !"

Film director Robert Altman's odd connection to Martha Woodroof --who managed to not-become a Hollywood celebrity.

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The Spark
8:02 pm
Thu June 6, 2013

Area Bach Boosters

Bach at age 61 painted by Haussmann (courtesy Scheide Collection, via Wikipedia)

Long time Shenandoah Bach Festival organizers and performers join us --including Ken Nafziger, Les Helmuth, and Jeremy Nafziger. 

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The Spark
12:22 pm
Fri May 31, 2013

Odd Old Va. Maps

Bear right at the mountain-sized turkey (according to an antique map).  Off our coast on a French-made nautical chart, exaggeratedly large French warships dwarf and scare wimpy British ships.  In his new book, Mapping Virginia: From the Age of Exploration to the Civil War, map expert Bill Wooldridge notices how we once pictured our own land and how the world-beyond once pictured Virginia. 

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The Spark
5:08 pm
Thu May 23, 2013

Back to the Basics

The Spark is taking a vacation this week, but will be back next week.  In the meantime, we're presenting State of the Re:Union - Back to the Basics.

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The Spark
11:12 am
Fri May 17, 2013

Flower Grower Mary Jo Swartzendruber

Eliza Doolittle is among the best-loved fictional flower-sellers.  Mary Jo Swartzendruber is a real flower seller --and she grows her own too.

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The Spark
11:11 am
Fri May 17, 2013

Tomato Guru

How does one pick a bushel of tomatoes without kneeling? It depends on how they're strung up. Though he'd humbly disagree, many Harrisonburg folks think that Singers Glen farmer, Marlin Burkholder, knows all there is to know about growing tomatoes. 

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The Spark
12:13 pm
Fri May 10, 2013

Champion Liar

Don't believe a word of this.

State two-time tall-tale-telling champ Mack Swift on storytelling. 

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The Spark
11:54 am
Fri May 10, 2013

"Baroque" Gem Near West Virginia?

The Handley Library looks more like something out of Vienna or Dresden than Winchester, Virginia. Architectural historian Richard Guy Wilson 

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The Spark
11:16 am
Fri May 10, 2013

News Photog's Artsy Side

Dudley Biddlecomb and his apprentice Peter Hedlund on the water. Photo: Pat Jarrett.

Staunton photographer Pat Jarrett has moved on from spot news coverage for the Staunton News Leader to his own brand of “nonfiction visuals.” 

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Web Extra
3:03 pm
Thu May 9, 2013

A Tall Tale from Mack Swift

Image: WMRA News (tw)

Storyteller Mack Swift appeared on The Spark.  Here is his rendition of

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