The Roundtable

Weekdays, 9 a.m.

Credit Peter Steiner

 WAMC's The Roundtable is an award-winning, nationally recognized eclectic talk program. The show airs from 9 a.m. to noon each weekday and features news, interviews, in-depth discussion, music, and much (much) more! Hosted by Joe Donahue and produced by Sarah LaDuke, The Roundtable tackles serious and lighthearted subjects, looking to explore the many facets of the human condition with civility, respect and responsibility.

The show's hallmark is thoughtful interviews with A-list newsmakers, authors, artists, sports figures, actors, and people with interesting stories to tell. Since hitting the airwaves in May of 2001, The Roundtable has interviewed the likes of Arthur Miller, Kurt Vonnegut, Maya Angelou, Madeleine Albright, Jimmy Carter, John McCain, Bob Dole, Steve Martin, James Taylor, Stephen King, Melissa Etheridge, Lin-Manuel Miranda and lots of other really cool people. Plus, Wilco does our theme song. What more can you ask for?

If you would like to be on the show email us at Send your comments or questions for The Roundtable Panel to

The Roundtable is also available as a podcast.  Subscribe today!

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10:50 - Congressional Corner
11:10 - Earth Wise

11:50 - The Slowdown

Book Picks lists are here.

You may also hear Pulse of the Planet and Sound Beat on The Roundtable.

Paul Reiser and Joe Donahue on stage at Page Hall in Albany New York
Patrick Dodson

Comedian, actor, television writer, author and musician Paul Reiser co-starred as Paul Buchman in the decade-defining 1990s comedy, "Mad About You." Other starring roles include Michael Taylor in 60 episodes of "My Two Dads," Doug Getty in "Red Oaks," and Dr. Sam Owens in "Stranger Things." His films include: "Diner," "Beverly Hills Cop" 1 & 2, "Aliens" and "Whiplash."

Reiser is also the author of three bestsellers about family life, including "Couplehood," "Babyhood" and "Familyhood." This Creative Life conversation was recorded on April 4, 2019.

This is a picture of Connecticut U.S. Senator Chris Murphy

Tensions with Iran are on the rise.

In today’s Congressional Corner, Connecticut U.S. Senator Chris Murphy wraps up his conversation with WAMC’s Alan Chartock.

"Fiddler: A Miracle Of Miracles" poster
"Fiddler: A Miracle Of Miracles"

Talk about tradition. Since it burst onto Broadway more than 50 years ago, “Fiddler On the Roof” has been performed somewhere in the world every single day. That’s just one fact you learn in Max Lewkowicz’s new documentary “Fiddler: A Miracle of Miracles,” which traces the show’s evolution from the stories of Sholem Aleichem all the way to the current Yiddish production. That’s a lot of sunrises and sunsets.

8/23/19 Panel

Aug 23, 2019

     The Roundtable Panel: a daily open discussion of issues in the news and beyond.

Today's panelists are WAMC’s Alan Chartock, Investigative Reporter Rosemary Armao, Senior Fellow and Visiting Professor at Bennington College, Founder of Beyond Plastics, former EPA regional administrator Judith Enck, Siena College Economics Professor Aaron Pacitti.

Edward Albee’s classic “Who’s Afraid Of Virginia Woolf?” is being performed at the Weston Playhouse in Weston, Vermont through August 31. The production is directed by Mike Donahue.

In the play, it’s two o’clock in the morning when George and Martha return home from a college faculty party, but the night has only just begun. An evening of fun and games takes a dark turn as the line between reality and illusion blurs.

Three cast members from Weston join us this morning. Andrew Garman (George), Kristin Villanueva (Honey) and Jeffrey Omura (Nick).

The 1st Annual T.R.E.A.T "Troy Reads Every August Together" will be held Sunday, August 25 at Riverfront Park in downtown Troy, New York at 3 p.m.

Award-winning author Coleen Murtagh Paratore joins us to talk about the event and her new book, "The Big Book About Being BIG," which will be read aloud among the group.

Murtagh Paratore is also leading Dear Writer, a writing workshop for adults, beginning September 18.

This is a picture of Connecticut U.S. Senator Chris Murphy

Most superdelegates are keeping their powder dry in the 2020 presidential primary.

In today’s Congressional Corner, Connecticut U.S. Senator Chris Murphy continues his conversation with WAMC’s Alan Chartock.

    Shawn Stone joins us to talk about what he's seen lately and what cultural events are coming up this week in our region.

Seen: "Mike Wallace Is Here"


  • "Winnie the Pooh" Park Playhouse Tykes, Cohoes Music Hall, Cohoes, Thursday-Friday 8/22-23, 2 PM
  • Albany Berkshire Ballet - "A Midsummer Night’s Dream" - The Egg, Albany, Friday 8/23, 7:30 PM
  • Doc Severinsen and The San Miguel 5 - Caffe Lena, Saratoga Springs, Friday-Saturday 8/23-24 at 8 PM; Sunday 8/25 at 7 PM
  • Mamalama y Andes Manta - The Century House Historical Society, Rosendale, Saturday 8/24, 3 PM
  • KISS: End of the Road World Tour - SPAC, Saratoga Spa State Park, Saratoga Springs, Saturday 8/24, 7 PM
  • Miro Quartet (Mozart, Schubert, Kevin Puts) - Tannery Pond Concerts, New Lebanon, Saturday 8/24, 8 PM
  • Catskill Jazz Factory: The Spirit of Harlem - Hudson Hall, Hudson, Saturday 8/24, 7 PM
  • Cha Wa - MASS MoCA, Hunter Center or Courtyard C, North Adams, Mass., Saturday 8/24, 8 PM
  • Patrick Higgins - Helsinki Hudson, Hudson, Sunday 8/25, 7:30 PM
  • "My Fair Lady" - Capital Park After Dark Film Series, West Capital Park, Albany, Wednesday 8/28, 8 PM

New Movies: "The Peanut Butter Falcon," "David Crosby: Remember My Name," "One Child Nation," "Angel Has Fallen"

8/22/19 Panel

Aug 22, 2019

   The Roundtable Panel: a daily open discussion of issues in the news and beyond.

Today's panelists are WAMC’s Alan Chartock, SUNY New Paltz Communications Professor and former New York State Senator Terry Gipson, Investigative Armao Rosemary Armao, and Edward Hamilton Distinguished Professor of Computer Science @ RPI and Faculty Associate at the Berkman Klein Center for Internet and Society at Harvard University and Harvard Data Science Initiative Fellow Fran Berman.

The Concert, 1918–19. Oil on canvas, 29 3/4 x 36 1/2 in. Art Gallery of Ontario, Toronto. Gift of Reuben Wells Leonard Estate, 1954, 53/27
Pierre-Auguste Renoir

Over the course of his long career, French painter Pierre-Auguste Renoir continually turned to the human figure for artistic inspiration. Renoir was born in 1841 and died a century ago in 1919. To observe the centenary of his death, the Clark Art Institute and the Kimbell Art Museum present the new exhibition, “Renoir: The Body, The Senses.” Include paintings, drawings, pastels, and sculptures by Renoir as well as works by his predecessors, contemporaries, and followers, the exhibition is on display at The Clark in Williamstown, Massachusetts through September 22.

“Renoir: The Body, The Senses” features works from The Clark’s collection and loans from all around the world. It was co-organized by Esther Bell, the Robert and Martha Berman Lipp Chief Curator at the Clark, and George T. M. Shackelford, Deputy Director at the Kimbell.

Esther Bell lead us through the exhibition.

Doc Severinsen
Sean Turi

Grammy Award-winning Doc Severinsen has been celebrated as America’s favorite trumpet player for more than half a century. Welcomed into living rooms for nearly three decades as the leader of "The Tonight Show Orchestra," (with host Johnny Carson hailing him as ‘the greatest trumpet player in the world,’) his impeccable musicianship and charismatic presence still dazzles at 92 years old, with the iconic trumpeter performing his signature stylings of big band, pop, jazz, world, and classical standards, universally hailed as one of our national treasures.

He is playing three shows with his band The San Miguel 5 at Caffè Lena in Saratoga Springs, New York on August 23, 24, and 25.

This is a picture of Connecticut U.S. Senator Chris Murphy

Not every Senator is running for president.

In today’s Congressional Corner, Connecticut U.S. Senator Chris Murphy speaks with WAMC’s Alan Chartock.

Aries Spears
Aries Spears

Later this week, comedian Aries Spears will be in Albany for two performances at the Funny Bone — Friday at 7:30 and 10. Aries Spears has been a veteran of comedy clubs, television and movies for decades, including his run on “Mad TV” and a lot of voice work. And you can catch his conversations about 80s movies, the Rocky series and the American cities he visits on his long-running podcast “Spears and Steinberg.”

8/21/19 Panel

Aug 21, 2019

    The Roundtable Panel: a daily open discussion of issues in the news and beyond.

Today's panelists are WAMC’s Alan Chartock, Times Union Columnist Chris Churchill, Investigative Journalist Rosemary Armao, Albany Country District Attorney David Soares, Dean of the College of Emergency Preparedness, Homeland Security and Cybersecurity at the University at Albany Robert Griffin.

Another month, another security breach and privacy is back in the news. Our tech-guru Jesse Feiler joins us to discuss a proposed Nation-wide Privacy Act.

California Consumer Privacy Act goes into effect January 1, 2020, and the General Data Protection Regulation in the EU is already in effect. Joe and Jesse discuss some of the issues including the good/bad/terrific/evil (take your pick) idea of having a nation-wide privacy act in the US.

Jesse Feiler is an author and developer who focuses on small business and nonprofits along with iOS technologies. He has recently added book publisher to his roles: his Champlain Arts business has published apps for a number of years, and has recently added books. Uta Hagen’s memoir “Sources” is back in print through

   This week's Book Picks from Lily Bartels at The Open Door Bookstore and Gift Gallery in Schenectady, NY.

"Inland" by Téa Obreht
"Chances Are..." by Richard Russo
"The Saturday Night Ghost Club" by Craig Davidson
"The Women of the Copper Country" by Mary Doria Russell
"Drive Your Plow Over the Bones of the Dead" by Olga Tokarczuk
"The Ghosts of Eden Park" by Karen Abbott

Daniel Shapiro, world-renowned expert on negotiation and conflict resolution, founding director of the Harvard International Negotiation Program, and bestselling author of “Negotiating the Nonnegotiable” will be speaking on Saturday, August 24 at 5 p.m. at the Tanglewood Learning Institute’s Big Idea Event at Ozawa Hall in Lenox, Massachusetts.

This keynote speech also features cellist Maya Beiser and coincides with the August 25 performances of Schoenberg’s “Peace on Earth” featuring the Tanglewood Festival Chorus conducted by James Burton, and Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony which culminates in the choral movement popularly known as the “Ode to Joy.”

Composed more than 80 years apart, the two works present powerfully contrasting portraits of protest, freedom, peace, and shared humanity.

For the past nineteen years, bestselling author Karin Slaughter has captivated readers with her poignant and gripping thrillers. Fans enjoy not only the depth, detail, and creativity that goes into every book, but Karin’s themes of female empowerment, her skill for holding a mirror up to society to explain what is going on in the world and her endless support of local libraries.

For her new novel, “The Last Widow,” Slaughter returns with her most popular characters, Will Trent and Sara Linton, after a three-year hiatus.

8/20/19 Panel

Aug 20, 2019

       The Roundtable Panel: a daily open discussion of issues in the news and beyond.

Today's panelists are WAMC’s Alan Chartock, The Empire Report’s J.P. Miller, Investigative Reporter Rosemary Armao, and Skidmore College Business professor and Brexit expert Peter Moloney.

Rucker C. Johnson is the Chancellor's Professor in the Goldman School of Public Policy at the University of California, Berkeley, and a faculty research associate at the National Bureau of Economic Research

We are frequently told that school integration was a social experiment doomed from the start. But as Johnson demonstrates in "Children of the Dream," it was, in fact, a spectacular achievement.

Drawing on longitudinal studies going back to the 1960s, he shows that students who attended integrated and well-funded schools were more successful in life than those who did not and this held true for children of all races.

T. Jefferson Parker has become a legend in the mystery-thriller field over the past thirty years, in which he’s written such highly acclaimed classics as "Laguna Heat," "The Famous and the Dead," "Black Water" and "The Triggerman’s Dance."

"The Last Good Guy" is the latest mystery thriller from Parker, the third in his Roland Ford series where a grizzled, hardened yet moral private investigator from San Diego, specializes in missing-persons cases. In his newest case, Ford becomes involved in something dark and sinister that is running roughshod over America’s Finest City.

When the Democratic presidential candidates debate for the third time, fewer hopefuls will be on stage.

In today’s Congressional Corner, Tim Vercellotti of the Western New England University poll wraps up his conversation with WAMC’s Alan Chartock.

Our Falling into Place series spotlights the important work of -and fosters collaboration between- not-for-profit organizations in our communities; allowing us all to fall into place.

Falling Into Place is supported by The Seymour Fox Memorial Foundation, Providing a helping hand to turn inspiration into accomplishment. See more possibilities … see more promise… see more progress.

This morning we focus on the Empire State Youth Orchestra’s CHIME program.

We are joined by Executive Director of Empire State Youth Orchestra Becky Calos and Administrative Director of CHIME Jared Shortmeier.

Governor Andrew Cuomo
Pat Bradley/WAMC

WAMC's Alan Chartock interviews New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo on Monday, Aug. 19, 2019.

8/19/19 Panel

Aug 19, 2019

      The Roundtable Panel: a daily open discussion of issues in the news and beyond.

Today's panelists are WAMC’s Alan Chartock, investigative journalist Rosemary Armao, and political consultant and lobbyist, Libby Post.