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John Santana

Classical Music Broadcaster


John Santana

Presenter of classical music

Sharing classical music is what I do. It's what I've done since 1971 (yes, I did start young).

During most of those years, you could hear my voice wafting (some might say spewing) from the AM and FM transmitters of Los Angeles radio stations KFAC, and K-Mozart.

For some of that time, I juggled programming for three major markets as Director of Programming for the California Classical Network, which consisted of several stations covering San Diego, Los Angeles, and San Francisco. Juggle is the word, too, since most of the programming was different for each market. As I recall, that's when a started sporting a few gray hairs.

Outside the studio, I've produced and hosted remote broadcasts of concerts and other classical-music related events, including the popular Hollywood Bowl Guest Conductor Competition.

I have served as the primary pre-concert speaker for several organizations, and regularly appear as Master of Ceremonies at their concerts and events. Speaking of being involved in listener activities, it was a pleasure to host listener tours to Europe. Although I apply the word pleasure, I expect that you understand that these tours are actually hard, exhausting work. Yes, tough work, but someone has to do it, and I never foist the grueling job onto someone else.

Along the way, I earned a Master of Music degree in composition, and I do my share of composing, conducting, arranging, and recording.

My work also includes independent voice-over sessions, some television, and a appearances in two films about the Los Angeles Philharmonic Orchestra.


Program Director

California Classical Network
K-Mozart, Los Angeles
KKHI, San Francisco
X-Bach, San Diego

Music Programmer
KFAC, Los Angeles
WQXR, New York
K-Mozart, Los Angeles

Program Host

Morning Drive
KFAC, Los Angels
KSUR, Monterey, Ca.

Afternoon Drive
K-Mozart, Los Angeles
KFAC, Los Angeles

Evening Concert
KFAC, Los Angeles
K-Mozart, Los Angeles


In The Wings
On the Horizon
The Romantic Hours
Music On My Mind
Morning Coffee with John
Musical Journeys
Fantasia 2000 (For Disney)

In-flight music program host

United Airlines
Pan American Airlines
Air Force One
Southwest Airlines

Broadcast Concert producter/host

Los Angeles Chamber  Orch.
Los Angeles Master Chorale
Carmel Bach Festival
Long Beach Symphony
Angeles Chorale
Pacific Symphony Orchestra

Pre-Concert Lectures

Los Angeles Philharmonic
Los Angeles Master Chorale
Pacific Symohony
Opera Pacific
Long Beach Symphony
Angeles Chorale
South Coast Symphony
London Symphony
London Philharmonic

Program Producer/Host
Special events from:

The Hollywood Bowl
Walt Disney Concert Hall
Segerstrom Hall, O.C.
Walt Disney Studios
LA County Museum of Art
Music Center of Los Angeles
Cerritos Center for the Arts

Listener Tours

Norway (chamber music)
Germany (opera)
Germany (symphonic music)


Degree: Master of Music, CSUF, in music theory and composition

Conductor/Music director: Capistrano Valley Symphony

John Santana

John Santana got his start in radio and television as a teenager in El Centro, California. As a sophomore in high school he hosted the eponymous John Santana Show, a weekly variety program on local TV for which he procured and interviewed guests, played the organ, and even swept out the studio before each show.

At 18 he became a weekend disc jockey on KXO, El Centro, honing his broadcasting skills while going to college during the week.

In 1975, as a music major at Cal State, Fullerton, John auditioned for the legendary Carl Princi at KFAC, Los Angeles, and was hired as a part-time classical announcer. After completing his Master’s degree in Composition and Music Theory in 1981, John eventually became KFAC’s morning host.

When KFAC was sold in 1989, John continued his classical radio career on KKGO, Los Angeles, serving as the afternoon drive host for many years, through their change in call letters to KMZT (K-Mozart). He was Program Director for the California Classical Network, which included KKGO, KKHI-San Francisco, and X-Bach-San Diego.

He is producer and host of CinemaScore, a popular program featuring “music of the movies, stage, and TV” and conversations with composers, actors, directors, musicians, and conductors.

Along with CinemaScore, John has produced a multitude of other programs, including a classical series for children, Musical Journeys, and In the Wings, daily vignettes highlighting cultural events in and around Los Angeles. He also developed The Romantic Hours with Mona Golabek, and was that series’ first producer.

John has numerous concert broadcasts to his credit, as well; Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra, Los Angeles Master Chorale, Los Angeles Opera, and American Youth Symphony have all benefited from his services as a producer and announcer.

His training as a musician and composer have put John in demand as a pre-concert speaker for such organizations as the Los Angeles Philharmonic, the New York Philharmonic, Opera Pacific, Pacific Symphony, and the Angeles Chorale, London Symphony Orchestra.

His humor and quick wit have made him a popular emcee at pops concerts, most notably for the Pacific Symphony, the Orange County Four Seasons Orchestra, and for the Capistrano Valley Symphony Orchestra. In 2006, John was pleased to present the Classical Grammy Awards at Staples Center in Los Angeles.

He is also the creator of Announcer Pronouncer, an interactive guide to plausible pronunciation of the myriad names and languages classical announcers face every day.

John spends what downtime he has at home with his family in Chino Hills, California, where he enjoys photography, writing music, and playing the organ. 

Listen to my work

K-Mozart broadcast the entire 2016 season of the Carmel Bach Festival. I hosted and produced the broadcasts.

Carmel Bach Festival
Concert remote broadcast

I was the voice of the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra broadcasts for the seven seasons they were broadcast on the California Classical Network.

Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra

Cinamascore presents music from the movies, theater, and TV, along with guest composers, performers, and producers.


I hosted in-flight classical music on, United Airlines, Pan American Airlines (the opera program), Finnair, and Air Force One.

United Airlines
In-flight classical music

Musical Journeys was a weekly program to introduce young people to classical music. My co-host was violinist and educator, Daryl Silberman.

Musical Journeys
Opening to Flight of the Bumblebee episdode (the nose-show).

My experience as a daily classical music host includes 35-plus years of major market air-time, including KFAC-AM/FM, K-Mozart, and the California Classical Network, which broadcast to San Francisco, San Diego, The Central Coast, and Los Angeles.

Daily Broadcasts
Here's a sampling of air-checks from recent broadcasts.

Just for the fun of it, here's a commercial spot announcement for

Farmer John
(The announcer at least tries to show he can do other things.)

Photo Gallery
A few memory-floggers from the photo collection

Let's talk

You can easily send me a message from this form.

Or you can email me: john@johnsantana.com
Or give me a call: 714-394-3863