Susan Lewis

Arts & Culture Reporter

Susan is an arts and culture reporter for WRTI. She contributes Arts Desk features, and weekly intermission interviews for The Philadelphia Orchestra in Concert broadcast series on WRTI with host Gregg Whiteside.

She is also a freelance essayist, journalist, and speechwriter who has written about Philadelphia for Insight Guides and Greater Philadelphia Tourism Marketing Corporation's Culture Files.  A former columnist for Philadelphia Magazine, she is the author of Reinventing Ourselves after Motherhood and a book of essays. Her work has appeared in The Philadelphia Inquirer, Child Magazine, Parents Magazine, Reader's Digest and Ladies' Home Journal (Parents Digest).

Born and raised in Philadelphia, Susan is also a lawyer, with a B.A. in Philosophy from Trinity College, Connecticut, and a J.D. from New York University School of Law. She has practiced law in New York City and taught entertainment law at Rutgers Law School in Camden.

Ways to Connect

The four DePue brothers (Wallace, Jason, Zack, and Alex) were raised on classical music, barbershop, and Bluegrass. As WRTI’s Susan Lewis reports, today they’re juggling work at conventional ensembles - The Philadelphia Orchestra, the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra, and the Philly Pops - with a family-based band specializing in a blend of classical and American grass roots music.

Chris Lee

On Tuesday evening, December 8th at Carnegie Hall,  the long-standing organization Musical America - known for its comprehensive directory of the music business - celebrated recipients of its 2016 awards for musical excellence. In a room full of supporters, managers, fellow artists and press, trophies were given to artist, composer, instrumentalist, vocalist, and ensemble of the year.

Jessica Griffin / The Philadelphia Orchestra

Among the works Sergei Rachmaninov promoted were his variations on themes of other composers. The Philadelphia Orchestra - and the bright, new star Daniil Trifonov - are shining a new light on a popular piece as well as lesser-known works in the genre.

Scottish conductor Donald Runnicles is busy with leadership positions in the opera and symphonic worlds in Germany, Scotland, and America.  WRTI’s  Susan Lewis profiles Runnicles, who is also a regular guest conductor with The Philadelphia Orchestra.  


Stephen Hahn

It’s just after 1:00 in the afternoon, and I’m holding up a wall backstage at the Kimmel Center, after watching a Philadelphia Orchestra rehearsal with Music Director Yannick Nezet-Seguin and soloist Hilary Hahn. Musicians are heading out, the hall is emptying.

Hulton archive

After publicly resisting the growing fascism in Europe in the 1930s, Hungarian pianist and composer Bela Bartok eventually fled his homeland. As WRTI’s Susan Lewis reports, he wrote his Second Violin Concerto not long before emigrating to the United States.


Finnish composer Jean Sibelius (1865-1957) was so revered in his homeland that the government commissioned him to write a symphony as part of a national celebration of his 50th birthday. WRTI’s Susan Lewis has more on what has become one of the composer’s most famous works.


Rachmaninoff's Piano Concerto No. 4 is not very well known in America. But it has a strong connection with The Philadelphia Orchestra, which continues to mine the richness of the work. WRTI's Susan Lewis has more.


According to Middle Eastern legend, Scheherazade saved her own life by telling her husband, the Sultan,  folk tales for A Thousand and One Nights. Those stories-within a-story inspired 19th-century composer Rimsky-Korsakov to create an orchestral suite that remains one of his most popular works today.  WRTI’s Susan Lewis has more.

PHL Live, a new Philadelphia city government initiative now in its second year, aims to recognize musical talent in the region with a contest spanning 10 different genres, from classical and jazz to pop. WRTI's Susan Lewis considers the jazz ensemble, The Vibe Plus Five. The band came in first place in PHL Live's jazz genre in 2014.


Pages