The Classical Station

A Website for a Radio Station to Reach Listeners Across the Globe

Since its founding in 1982, The Classical Station (WCPE) has remained dedicated to the goal of broadcasting high quality classical music for passionate fans and casual listeners alike. The listener-supported station differentiated itself early in its existence by broadcasting online, allowing classical music fans from around the world to access quality broadcasting 24/7. 

In preparation for its third decade of operation, The Classical Station wanted to unveil a new brand and website that would better serve listeners, educate site visitors, and clearly project the sophistication of the organization. They came to us to lead their branding work and design through the development of a nonprofit website design that would be both user-friendly and informative while appealing to their broad network of volunteers, donors, business partners, and fans. The resulting site brings together a modern design, clear organization, and an easy-to-use live streaming feature for a product that successfully builds the station’s online presence.  

Something for Everyone

Beginning on the homepage, the site incorporates a number of elements that cater to a variety of different site visitors. For listeners, the top of the page prominently features a “Listen Now” button that, when clicked, begins a live stream of music from the radio station. Just below, listeners can explore the songs in a sidebar that lists what piece is playing now, what played previously, and what’s coming up next. Other areas of the homepage showcase a map graphic and stat bar, links to relevant music news articles, and a slider that highlights partner organizations. 

Interior pages offer a wealth of information while maintaining navigability and ease-of-use. The straightforward dropdown menu anticipates visitors’ needs, harnessing an audience-driven navigation strategy and dividing the site into clear categories that highlight popular topics and answers to common questions. Within this clear structure, site visitors are easily able to find out how to request a song, make a donation, join the station’s membership program, or become a volunteer, among other things. 

Browsing While Listening

One of the site’s most helpful and valuable features is its live streaming music player. When a site visitor opts to listen to the music, the player pops up in its own separate window and begins playing directly from the station. This functionality is useful not only because it allows visitors to stream high quality classical music directly from the site, but it also allows them to continue browsing the site (or other sites!) while enjoying their classical music. The player’s flexibility encourages the stream, station, and site to embed itself in visitors’ days as they work and multitask with The Classical Station streaming in the background. 

A Hybrid Design

As a whole, the site’s design frames the station’s content in a way that combines a modern aesthetic with the traditional  and elegant feel of classical music. Throughout the site, the modern qualities of sharp edges, bold sans serif type, and strong color blocking are countered by warm neutrals, calming shades of teal, and the old-school look of classic serif headings. By carrying these elements through every part of the design, the site takes on a hybrid feeling that perfectly conveys the station’s dual commitment to tradition and continued relevance. 

Dynamic Upkeep

Because the site is constantly changing to reflect program schedules, news, and playlists, we built it on a flexible WordPress base that makes manual updates simple and intuitive. Better yet, we worked hard to make sure that the online player requires little maintenance and automatically displays the upcoming music on the playlist page. 

With the launch of the new site, The Classical Station has successfully revamped their online presence. We’re looking forward to see how they grow and scale the site over time!