Jim Cotter

Arts & Culture Editor

Jim was born and raised in Ireland. He began his radio career in Dublin before moving to the U.K. where he worked for BBC Radio Wales and the BBC World Service. He lived on the island of Crete in Greece for 10 years before moving to the United States.

Since 2002, Jim has been the station's arts and culture reporter and then 

Jim traveled to Europe in 2004, and to Asia in 2005 and 2008 to report on Philadelphia Orchestra tours for WRTI and to Scotland in 2005 with Pennsylvania Ballet.  

In 2013, Jim was awarded a prestigious Knight Arts Grant to produce "Philadelphia Music Makers," a new artist-hosted music program he created. The series will begin airing on WRTI in Fall 2014. 

Jim can be heard throughout the week in Creatively Speaking arts features and in Sunday Philadelphia Orchestra in Concert broadcasts. 


Creatively Speaking
1:29 pm
Wed October 8, 2014

Fauré: A Requiem For A Healthy Young Man?

Gabriel Fauré composed his Requiem in D minor between 1887 and 1890

Gabriel Fauré began composing his Requiem in D minor at an unusual time - in his 30s, and nowhere near the end of his life. This setting of the Mass for the Dead for orchestra, chorus, and two soloists is famous for its central soprano aria Pie Jesu - also known as the "lullaby" requiem.

As WRTI’s Jim Cotter reports, the soprano Susanna Phillips says doing justice to this piece is a little like being in love. You'll hear Faure's Requiem, performed by The Philadelphia Orchestra on WRTI, Sunday October 12 at 1 pm.

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Philadelphia Music Makers
10:24 am
Tue October 7, 2014

Jazz Trumpet Player Terell Stafford Hosts Philadelphia Music Makers on WRTI: October 12, 6 PM

Terell Stafford

This Sunday at 6 pm, celebrated jazz trumpet player Terell Stafford is the host for WRTI's Philadelphia Music Makers.  

Terell Stafford has been hailed as one of the finest instrumentalists of his generation. But while his love of the instrument started early, he didn't find his genre until much later in life. 

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Creatively Speaking
6:30 am
Mon September 29, 2014

Fred Hersch, Senior Statesman of Jazz

Pianist Fred Hersch
David Bartolomi

This Sunday on WRTI, the hosting musician for Philadelphia Music Makers is Fred Hersch. As WRTI’s Jim Cotter reports, the acclaimed pianist started life in the classical world, until his fascination with a jazz standard showed him a whole new world.

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A magical voice and a magnetic persona
2:03 pm
Tue September 23, 2014

Soprano Jessica Lennick Hosts Philadelphia Music Makers on WRTI: Sept. 28, 5 PM

Soprano Jessica Lennick
Britt Olsen-Ecker Photography

Still ascending the steep trajectory of a mid-career opera singer, Jessica Lennick feels compelled to keep at her craft. Why? Because it's her calling to do so.

A local singer with a growing stature, Jessica's next major project is the title role in a new opera about the sex life of philosopher and novelist Ayn Rand, composed by Melissa Dunphy.

Listen to Jessica's story, in her own words, and hear her perform on WRTI's Philadelphia Music Makers, Sunday, September 28th, 5 to 6 pm.

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An Orchestral Star
11:05 am
Thu September 18, 2014

Harpist Elizabeth Hainen on WRTI's Philadelphia Music Makers: Sept. 21 at 5 PM

WRTI presents the debut episode of Philadelphia Music Makers on Sunday, September 21 from 5 to 6 pm. Elizabeth Hainen, principal harp of The Philadelphia Orchestra, launches the series.

Most of the music for Philadelphia Music Makers was recorded at WRTI's state-of–the art studios or in the German Society of Pennsylvania in Center City Philadelphia, with its lively acoustics and beautiful Bösendorfer grand piano.

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Creatively Speaking
6:02 am
Mon September 1, 2014

American Audiences Missing Out On Many Great Performers

Pianist Eric Le Sage

Over the past decade or so, it has become increasingly difficult for overseas musicians without well-established reputations in the U.S. to get permission to travel here for work. However, as WRTI's Jim Cotter reports, when a powerhouse such as The Philadelphia Orchestra wants a particular soloist, they usually get their man, or woman.

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Creatively Speaking
6:01 am
Mon August 25, 2014

Pianist Helene Grimaud: Braving Brahms

Pianist Helene Grimaud

This Sunday on The Philadelphia Orchestra in Concert on WRTI, Helene Grimaud performs the Brahms Piano Concerto No. 1, with conductor Michael Tilson Thomas filling in for Yannick Nezet-Seguin.

As WRTI’s Jim Cotter reports, the French pianist was originally scheduled to play the second Brahms piano concerto, but changed the program when Yannick dropped out.

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Creatively Speaking
3:27 pm
Tue August 19, 2014

Music (and Art) at the Museum: Art After 5 on Friday Nights

Art After 5 at the Philadelphia Museum of Art - every Friday night starting at 5 pm.
Derek Brad

Philadelphia’s largest fine art venue has, over the past decade, become one of the city’s premiere performing arts presenters. As WRTI’s Jim Cotter reports, it’s attracting audiences with its wide variety of presentations.

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Creatively Speaking
4:04 pm
Mon August 11, 2014

The Crossing's Path: Marked By Ups and Downs

The Crossing performing at The Icebox at Crane Arts Center in June, 2014.

The Crossing, one of America’s foremost contemporary-music choirs, has endured an eventful past 12 months.

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Creatively Speaking
12:42 pm
Mon August 4, 2014

A Civil War-Era Artist Who Battled Disability

William Trego in his studio in 1899 with "The Rescue of the Colors"
Mercer Museum/Bucks County Historical Society


Pennsylvania has been the birthplace of many highly regarded artists; well-known figures such as Thomas Eakins, Benjamin West, and Wharton Esherick. 

However, mention the name William T. Trego and you’ll likely be met with blank stares. WRTI’s Jim Cotter reflects on one of Pennsylvania’s lesser-known masters.  William T. Trego Catalogue at the James A. Michener Art Museum.