Danie Alexander

Associate Producer, Announcer

Danette (Danie) Alexander first came to KCUR in 2007 as an intern for Up to Date after completing her B.A. in Communications at the University of Missouri – Kansas City. After her KCUR internship was completed, Danie continued to spend her mornings assisting senior producer Stephen Steigman as a volunteer with the show.  Her radio experience also includes stints with public radio's New Letters on the Air as a broadcast engineer and on local public radio as host of a weekly overnight call-in show.

In December 2011, Danie started as a temporary on-air announcer and is now the regular voice on Saturday afternoons.  In August 2012 she became the associate producer for Up to Date where one of her assignments is  producing the weekly segment 90-Mile View.  

Danette Alexander also holds a B.S. degree from William Woods University. Originally from Long Island, NY, she and her husband Steven Alexander live in Raytown when they’re not working on their future retirement property on Tablerock Lake.

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Up To Date
12:57 pm
Wed October 29, 2014

DiDonato Invites 40,000 Fans To Sing With Her At Kauffman Stadium

Mezzo soprano Joyce DiDonato, a Royals fan for decades, sings the National Anthem on Wednesday.
Credit courtesy: Joyce DiDonato

After a social media campaign with the twitter hashtag #LetJoyceSing, a Change.org petition, an invitation from Major League Baseball to sing in Game 7 of the World Series -- and the Royals victory that assured there would be a Game 7, Prairie Village, Kan. native Joyce DiDonato is ready to sing the National Anthem in the final game.

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Up To Date
2:26 pm
Tue October 28, 2014

'Only A Game' Host Bill Littlefield On Sports And Poetry

Credit Zephyr Press

Bill Littlefield is host of Only a Game the syndicated program aimed at the serious sports fan and the steadfast sports avoider. (It airs Saturday mornings at 6:00 on KCUR.)

Littlefield has written several books on sports and two novels so his latest work, Take Me Out, a book of sports-related poems, is a bit of a departure. Bill talks with Steve Kraske about what inspired him to poetry, the history behind Only a Game, and his thoughts on this year's World Series.

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Up To Date
2:00 pm
Tue October 28, 2014

Tonganoxie Teen Runs For Kansas Legislature

Austin Harris, Democrat candidate for Kansas District 42.
Credit www.harris4house42.com

While many millennials are feeling disaffected with politics, Austin Harris is hoping to make a difference. The 19-year old from Tonganoxie is running for the Kansas State Legislature and, if he wins, he would be the youngest House member in Kansas in decades. Austin sits down with Steve Kraske to discuss the issues and the intricacies of attending Washburn University while campaigning against Republican incumbent Connie O’Brien.

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Up To Date
4:47 pm
Fri October 24, 2014

Before The Royals There Were The Athletics

Kansas City Athletics vs. New York Yankees, Municipal Stadium, 1966
Credit Missouri State Archives

The Royals came along in 1969 after a U.S. senator from Missouri, Stuart Symington, put the squeeze on Major League Baseball. But before the boys in blue a team called the Philadelphia Athletics came to our fair town.

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Up To Date
4:06 pm
Fri October 24, 2014

New Novel Set In Overland Park Looks At Online Video Gaming

An Overland Park teenager plans his life around his favorite online video game to the point where his divorced parents agree on this much: “Get off the damn computer!”

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Up To Date
4:43 pm
Thu October 23, 2014

Kansas City Millennials Talk Politics At First Generation Listen KC Event

Up To Date's Steve Kraske asked the crowd at Generation Listen KC's inaugural event this question about the massive amounts of student loan debt piling up in the United States: "Why are you putting up with it?"
Alyson Raletz KCUR

Generation Listen KC is a new networking group through KCUR aimed at engaging and connecting with millennial public radio listeners in the Kansas City area.

As part of its Forward Promote series, Generation Listen KC invited Up to Date's Steve Kraske to speak with young voters about the upcoming elections at the group's inaugural event on Wednesday night.

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Up To Date
5:30 pm
Wed October 22, 2014

Local Listen: The Architects

The Architects have been Kansas City's sturdiest punk band for a decade. The quartet is barnstorming the country with the California skate-punk legends Agent Orange. Their tour stops at the Bottleneck in Lawrence, Kan. on Friday, October 24.

This week's edition of Local Listen features "Kickswaggerboom," a song from the latest installment of the Architect's "Border Wars" song cycle that reveals the Architect's affection for vintage American pop.

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Up To Date
2:47 pm
Tue October 14, 2014

KU Med's Linda Redford Works To Meet Needs Of Aging Prison Population

Credit publik15 / flickr.com

America’s prisons are dealing with an unprecedented issue: a rapidly increasing population of elderly inmates. It’s estimated that one-third of the entire prison population will be 55 years and older by the year 2030.

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Up To Date
5:24 pm
Mon October 13, 2014

"Cosby: His Life And Times"

Credit Simon & Schuster

He was a pitchman for Jell-O and got us moving with Fat Albert. He was the first black man to star in a television drama and gave fatherly advice in the TV show that bore his name and changed the way many people in America viewed African-Americans.

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Up To Date
4:26 pm
Thu October 9, 2014

Local Listen: OJT

Credit www.kenlovern.com

This Saturday's 18th & Vine Jazz and Blues Festival will have national acts like the great jazz trumpeter Roy Hargrove.  But the event also provides an expanded stage for many Kansas City-based musicians like OJT. This organ jazz trio, led by Ken Lovern, will be among the acts representing the area's jazz scene. This edition of Local Listen features the trio's playful new interpretation of Katy Perry's "I Kissed a Girl."

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Up To Date
3:40 pm
Thu October 9, 2014

Passing The College Application Process

Credit TheBlackHour.com

It's that time of year when many high school seniors take on a new title, college applicant. For them and their parents it can be an all-consuming process. On this edition of Up to Date, Steve Kraske talks with Pembroke Hill teacher and college counselor, Tom Medlock, and one of its students going through the process, Seun Adebo. They examine the elements of the total package that is a college application.

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Up To Date
3:06 pm
Thu October 9, 2014

Technology Gives Us 'Enchanted Objects'

Credit www.enchantedobjects.com

Traveling via teleportation. Umbrellas, trash cans, wallets, and cars that communicate with us. Pill bottles that pester us until we take our medication, and credit cards that monitor our exercise and reward us monetarily.

In this broadcast of Up to Date, we look at the impact of technology on things we use everyday. Steve Kraske explores the power and connectivity of these "enchanted objects" with entrepreneur and MIT instructor David Rose.

Guest:

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Up To Date
3:03 pm
Wed October 8, 2014

A Fan's Notes: Our Time

Credit twitter.com/royals

The greatest week in Kansas City sports history played out on a grand stage. Seventeen million viewers saw the underdog Chiefs snuff out the New England Patriots’ dynasty on Monday Night Football, while Arrowhead’s fans reclaimed its Guinness-Book record for world’s loudest stadium.

Of course, that was a mere preamble to Tuesday, when the Kansas City Royals let loose one of the most exhilarating playoff games of all time, the kind of reality TV that even non-sports fans couldn’t resist.   

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Up To Date
1:52 pm
Wed October 8, 2014

Professor Says Despite What Frank Wrote, Kansas Moderates Do Matter

The Capitol building in Topeka, Kansas.
Credit J. Steven Conn / Flickr Creative Commons

Despite what Thomas Frank wrote in What's the Matter with Kansas, political moderates really do matter. So says Prof. Alexander Smith who sees moderation as a value written deeply into the heart and soul of Kansas. On this edition of Up to Date, Smith tells Steve Kraske that, although greatly misunderstood, the more politically temperate among us will survive even this current period of political polarization.

Guest:

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Up To Date
5:16 pm
Tue October 7, 2014

Data Mining Makes Personal Life Public And Profitable

Fill out a warranty card . . . sign up for a rewards program . . . apply for a marriage license and somewhere there’s a company compiling the information you provided for profit.  Whether it’s a retailer looking to target its advertising or a business looking to sell aggregated information about you, many of the personal details of your life are no longer private.

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Up To Date
4:55 pm
Tue October 7, 2014

Kansas Healthcare Consultant Debunks Ten Myths Of Modern Medicine

When it comes to getting medical treatment it’s good to live in America. Here we get the finest health care in the world, have confidence in the doctors we see and our hospitals are the best places to be when we’re ill. Not so says healthcare consultant John Leifer.

On this edition of Up to Date, Leifer talks with Steve Krasek to expose these and other myths of modern medicine in this country including this one: we’re the patients so we’re not part of the problem.

Guest:

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Up To Date
2:47 pm
Thu October 2, 2014

Historian David McCullough: "Look At Your Fish"

Credit Brett Weinstein / Wikimedia Commons

When it comes to the telling of the American story, historian David McCullough has few peers. In a book-writing career spanning 46 years, McCullough has chronicled the lives of Harry Truman, Theodore Roosevelt and John Adams. He wrote about the devastation of the Jonestown Flood and the construction of the Brooklyn Bridge and the Panama Canal.

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Up To Date
5:47 pm
Wed October 1, 2014

KU Researcher's Work Prominent In Tale Of Distracted Driving

Credit www.harpercollins

When you text while you drive, you can’t be watch the road all the time. And that’s a problem when you encounter other people. A Utah college student found that out when he hit and killed two rocket scientists while texting on a drive through the Rocky Mountains.

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Up To Date
4:17 pm
Fri September 26, 2014

Local Listen: Grand Marquis

Credit grandmarquis.net

Big Joe Turner died in 1985, but the jump blues tradition he forged in Prohibition-era Kansas City nightclubs is kept alive by the Grand Marquis. The band has been entertaining audiences with its vintage sound since 1998. This week's edition of Local Listen features "Bed of Nails," a raucous song from the Grand Marquis' 2013 album "Blues and Trouble."

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Up To Date
4:29 pm
Thu September 25, 2014

Koch Brothers Just Two Of America's Billionaires Spending To Change Politics

Credit www.brookings.edu

There are almost 500 billionaires living in the United States. Having more money than one might know what to do with isn't a problem for a growing number of them as they turn their focus and funds to American politics. From Michael Bloomberg to Sheldon Adelson, they are more than dabbling these days. In some cases, like Bloomberg's, they're even running for office.

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Up To Date
4:28 pm
Wed September 24, 2014

How Change And Doubt Lead To America's Success On The Global Stage

Credit Random House

For those who think steadfast policy and international cooperation led to America's accomplishments on the global stage, Stephen Sestanovich says, think again. The former U.S. ambassador-at-large to the Soviet Union argues it has been when the U.S. has changed course from established strategies that it has realized success in the world.

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Up To Date
3:50 pm
Wed September 24, 2014

After WWI, The Pilgrimage Of Gold Star Mothers

Credit Random House

Of the 4.7 million Americans who took part in World War I, over 116,000 of them died. Many were given a final resting place in American military cemeteries in Europe. After the Great War a program was begun to give Gold Star mothers and widows (those whose son or husband had served during the conflict) the opportunity to cross the Atlantic to visit their loved one's grave.

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Up To Date
4:37 pm
Tue September 23, 2014

Veterinarian Wayne Hunthausen: How To Prevent Loneliness In Pets

Lonely pets can indulge in destructive behavior.
Credit Tommy Lew / flickr.com

Throughout the 20th Century our perception and treatment of cats and dogs changed from that of working animal to treasured companion. We brought them inside and made them members of our family. As society changed, however, those animals went from the constant stimulation from and occupation with the outdoor environment to that provided by stay-at-home mothers and children to often being home alone for eight hours or more every weekday.

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Up To Date
12:31 pm
Mon September 22, 2014

A Century Of Union Station

A few decades ago, Union Station was a bustling train hub, but then people started traveling by air and the station fell into disuse and disrepair. Kansas City's grand old train station turned one hundred this year. In this edition of Up To Date, Steve Kraske discusses the history of the station, how a flood changed its story and the miracle of its survival. 

Guest:

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Up To Date
1:31 pm
Thu September 18, 2014

Steve Forbes: Gold Does Not Ensure Against Mistakes By Government

Credit www.forbes.com

Money is a crucial part of our society and often a dominating concern, but what exactly is money? And why do we know so little about it?

In this edition of Up To Date, Steve Kraske talks with Steve Forbes, the chairman and editor-in-chief of Forbes Media. Forbes advocates for a return to the gold standard and explains why policy makers are dangerously ignorant of fundamental monetary principles.

Guest:

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Up To Date
4:17 pm
Tue September 16, 2014

Gov. Brownback's Selection Of Stegall Stirs Debate Over Judge Selection Process

The Kansas Supreme Court in the original Courtroom in the State Capitol.
Credit http://www.kscourts.org

A recent change in Kansas law has re-ignited the debate on how judges are selected to the bench. In this edition of Up to Date, Steve Kraske examines the methods for seating judges, and who should hold the final say in how they are chosen.

Guests:

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Up To Date
7:08 am
Sat September 13, 2014

Weekend To-Do List

Credit kcimprovfestival.blogspot.com

Looking to get down this weekend?  Brian McTavish has suggestions from classic disco to improvisation on his Weekend To-Do List!

 

KC and the Sunshine Band
Classic ’70s hit disco entertainment with costume party
7 p.m. Saturday
Kansas City Live! Block, Kansas City Power & Light District, 13th and Walnut
Admission: Free

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Up To Date
5:12 am
Sat September 13, 2014

Local Listen: Various Blonde

Kansas City's Various Blonde has been attempting to expand the consciousness of listeners since 2008. The art-rock band has perfected its potent psychedelic sound on the new album "Summer High." This week's edition of Local Listen showcases the heavy mysticism of the album's title track.

Hear more: Various Blond performs at The Record Bar on October 15.

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Up To Date
5:04 am
Sat September 13, 2014

Up To Date's Indie, Foreign & Doc Critics' 'Three To See,' September 12-14

Brendan Gleeson as Father James in "Calvary."
Credit Reprisal Films

Looking for a great film to see over the weekend? Up to Date's independent, foreign, and documentary film critics share their favorites showing on area screens:

Cynthia Haines:

  • The Trip to Italy
  • Boyhood
  • A Most Wanted Man

Steve Walker:

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Up To Date
2:57 pm
Mon September 8, 2014

FBI And State Auditor Investigating St. Joseph School District

Dr. Fred Czerwonka, Superintendent of Schools for St. Joseph, Missouri
Credit www.sjsd.k12.mo.us

Probably best known as the home of the Pony Express, St. Joseph, Missouri received a shock when the Feds came to town. Currently, the School District there is being scrutinized by the FBI, grand jury subpoenas have been issued, and the State Auditor has weighed in with an in-depth review of financial activities involving district administrators.

KCUR’s Sam Zeff has been looking into this and he joins Steve Kraske to explain what has caused all the interest and just how much trouble it could mean for the district.

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