Mary-Charlotte Domandi began producing and hosting the Radio Cafe on Labor Day of 2003 on KSFR, Santa Fe Public Radio, broadcasting from a corner table at a busy local coffee shop.
The program features interviews of nationally and internationally distinguished authors, scientists, filmmakers, artists, activists, and thinkers of all sorts. The programming philosophy is deeply democratic; Domandi believes that a community is made up of many voices and perspectives that deserve to be heard. “The craft of this kind of interviewing,” she says, “is to keep the conversation at a high level, and at the same time keep it inclusive, open, and friendly.”
“The beauty of radio,” Domandi says, “is that is a medium gives direct access to ideas, to stories, bypassing the distractions of visual imagery. When you hear conversations with interesting people, you are drawn in, you feel like you’re at the table with them. I am grateful for the chance to share these conversations with listeners in a way that opens up their own lives and helps them think in new ways. One of the greatest compliments I receive is when I hear that people are talking at lunch about what they heard on the Radio Cafe that morning. That’s what it’s all about—stimulating conversation.”