WBUR Staff

Andrea Shea

Arts Reporter, WBUR

Andrea started listening to NPR on WEOS, her college radio station, during the Gulf War. She didn’t have a T.V. so it was her primary broadcast news source.Her attraction to public radio and the human voice continued into grad school. Andrea got a M.A. in Media Studies at the New School in New York (’93) with a focus in audio production. Her first sound piece was about America’s fear and fascination with tattoos.

Following graduation, Andrea moved to Washington D.C. and was lucky enough to get an internship on the NPR National Desk. After a few months, Andrea switched over Weekend Edition Sunday after being hired as the editorial assistant. Waking up on Sunday mornings at 4 a.m. as a twenty-something was not easy, but she did it for more than two years and learned a ton from the generous and talented producers and host Liane Hansen.

Then Andrea left NPR to brew beer professionally. She did that in Arlington Virginia and Key West, Florida. Soon enough the public radio siren beckoned Andrea back north, where she edited interviews for The World, an international daily news show produced by WGBH and the BBC.

In 1997 WBUR started developing the program Here & Now and Andrea was a founding producer. Over time she evolved into the show’s Arts Producer. The WBUR newsroom created an Arts and Culture Reporter position in 2007. Andrea has been following the explosively vibrant scene in Boston and beyond to the best of her abilities ever since.

Her work has been recognized with an Edward R. Murrow Award for audio feature reporting, the Public Radio News Directors Award for use of sound, the Associated Press for use of sound, and a media award from Arts Learning, a group dedicated to arts education.

Recent stories

34-Year-Old Boston Classical Orchestra Files For Bankruptcy And Folds

February 11, 2016
The Boston Classical Orchestra performing at Faneuil Hall. (Courtesy @BCOtweet/Twitter)

The Boston Classical Orchestra folds its tent after 34 years. Will another group take its place?

How Conservators Are Saving A Historic Mural At The Boston Public Library

February 08, 2016
Ian Hodkinson reveals the original metal support system that helps hold the Pierre Puvis de Chavannes mural in place. (Jesse Costa/WBUR)

Conservation experts used a new method to remove a damaged mural at the Boston Public Library so that the mural can be restored.

Local Musicians Celebrate David Bowie At MIT — In A Most Peculiar Way

January 29, 2016
The community orchestra rehearsing at MIT. (Courtesy Christine Southworth)

The tribute will feature the Boston-area premieres of Philip Glass’s Symphony No. 1, “Low,” and Symphony No. 4, “Heroes” — which were inspired by Bowie and Brian Eno’s “Berlin Trilogy.”

MFA Acquires New England’s First Frida Kahlo Painting

January 26, 2016
MFA Conservator of Paintings Rhona MacBeth places Frida Kahlo's “Dos Mujeres (Salvadora y Herminia) (1928)” on an easel for display. It was the first painting Kahlo ever sold. (Andrea Shea/WBUR)

Since the Mexican government declared Frida Kahlo’s pieces “cultural monuments,” her work is rarely seen outside of Mexico with only 12 of her paintings in public collections in the U.S.

Seiji Ozawa, Longtime BSO Conductor, To Return To Tanglewood After 10-Year Absence

January 20, 2016
Seiji Ozawa directing the BSO the last time he was at Tanglewood on Aug. 5, 2006. (Jon Winslow/AP)

BSO managing director Mark Volpe says he’s been trying to bring Ozawa back to Tanglewood for years, but a series of health issues intervened.

A Transparent Look For MassArt’s New Huntington Building

January 19, 2016
The exterior of Massachusetts College of Art and Design's new building. (Courtesy Richard Barnes)

MassArt’s approximately 2,000 students will now have access to gleaming new studios, workshops, galleries, lecture halls and a public plaza.

iPads Are Coming To Symphony Hall — Yes, During Performances

January 14, 2016
François-Xavier Roth at an earlier concert leading the BSO and soloists in J.S. Bach's Brandenburg Concerto No. 1. (Courtesy Stu Rosner/BSO)

For its latest experiment to attract younger audiences, the Boston Symphony Orchestra is testing “Casual Fridays” to relax the atmosphere and add a digital element to the performances.

Rum, Rumba, Slaves And Ghosts: A New Art Installation Evokes The Cuban Sugar Industry

January 14, 2016
Cuban artist Maria Magdalena Campos-Pons (right) with her American husband and collaborator Neil Leonard at the Peabody Essex Museum in Salem. (Andrea Shea/WBUR)

For more than a century, Cuban sugar fueled the global rum industry. Now, a Boston-based, Cuban-born artist and her American musician husband are bringing the story of Cuba’s now abandoned sugar fields and factories to the Peabody Essex Museum in Salem.

MFA Acquires Rare, Resplendent 18th Century Desk And Bookcase Crafted In Mexico

December 29, 2015
Mid-18th century desk and bookcase. Inlaid woods and incised and painted bone, maque, gold and polychrome paint, metal hardware. (Courtesy, Museum of Fine Arts, Boston)

MFA director Matthew Teitelbaum says the new addition tells a different, multi-cultural story than the museum’s colonial American furniture because its design was influenced strongly by European, Asian and African cultures.

Being Scrooge: One Actor's 22-Year Role As A Beloved Grumpy Miser

December 18, 2015
Stage actor David Coffee has been transforming himself into the stingy Mr. Scrooge for more than 20 years in the North Shore Music Theatre's annual production of the "Christmas Carol." Here Coffee is leaving the dressing room en route to the stage for a performance. (Jesse Costa/WBUR)

For more than two decades, David Coffee has spent the holiday season transforming into Scrooge at the North Shore Music Theatre in Beverly, where he’s gained quite the loyal following.

Knives And Cabbage Fly At Giant ‘Kraut Mob’ In Boston

October 04, 2015
Jeremy Ogusky (right) at a kraut mob, or a sauerkraut-making event, at Powisset Farm in Dover. (Andrea Shea/WBUR)

With 250 pounds of cabbage waiting to be chopped, massaged, salted, squished into jars, Jeremy Ogusky is ready to expose newbies to the world of fermented foods at Sunday’s Boston Fermentation Festival.

Cheese-Lovers, Come With Us As We Descend Into A Cambridge Shop’s (Stinky) Cave

September 29, 2015
Formaggio Kitchen owner Ihsan Gurdal looks through the cheese case at the Cambridge store. Gurdal used to coach volleyball at Harvard before buying Formaggio Kitchen in the early 1990s. (Andrea Shea/WBUR)

From the depths of a cheese cave, some local cheese mongers — like Formaggio Kitchen’s Ihsan Gurdal — are waging a campaign to raise awareness about cheese origins, cheese integrity and cheese abuse.

Turn It Down: Berklee And Spotify Team Up To Save Our Ears

May 19, 2015
The World Health Organization predicts 1 billion young people could develop hearing loss due to poor listening habits. While all of our ears are at stake, the prognosis is worse for musicians. So Berklee College of Music and Spotify are teaming up to raise awareness about threats to our hearing.(Emily Orpin/Flickr)

The World Health Organization predicts 1 billion young people could develop hearing loss due to poor listening habits. While all of our ears are at stake, the prognosis is worse for musicians. So Berklee College of Music and Spotify are teaming up to raise awareness about threats to our hearing.

Saving A Slaughterhouse: Why Groton Rallied Behind Blood Farm

March 12, 2015
Tom Peyton, Blood Farm's plant manager, walks in front of the newly built processing facility in Groton. A fire in December 2013 destroyed the business that has been staffed by seven generations of Bloods. After the fire, the community of Groton joined with the local meat industry to urge the family, one of only two USDA certified slaughterhouses in the state, to rebuild. (Jesse Costa/WBUR)

The Bloods (yes, that’s their real name) have been running Blood Farm in Groton for seven generations.
When a fire threatened to shut them down for good, the family was surprised by the outpouring of support urging them to rebuild.

Gov. Baker Proposes Eliminating Film Tax Credit

March 04, 2015
Rebecca Hall, left, and Ben Affleck are shown in a scene from "The Town." (AP Photo/Warner Bros., Claire Folger)

The cut would pay for Baker’s proposed increase in the state’s earned income tax credit for low-income working families.

Is Making Sausage A Manly Pursuit? One Local Female Charcutiere Says Not Necessarily

January 08, 2015
Charcutiere Julie Biggs (Courtesy Julie Biggs)

Boston-area charcutiere Julie Biggs is up for a Good Food Award Thursday night in San Francisco.

Why Are These Scientists Singing About Ebola?

October 03, 2014
Computational biologist Pardis Sabeti (YouTube)

A Harvard scientist and her African colleagues create an uplifting song about Ebola that both helps heal their grief over fallen colleagues and serves to educate the public.

The Art of Aging And Destruction

August 19, 2014
Film/TV "ager/dyer" Jill Thibeau. (WBUR/Andrea Shea)

We profile costumer Jill Thibeau, whose job is to age and destroy clothing to fit the needs of a particular a character or scene in film and television.

Tanglewood Embraces Local Food Movement

August 07, 2014
Classical music fans have been picnicking on Tanglewood's lush lawn for years. (Alan Solomon/ AP File)

Food has always been a big part of the Tanglewood experience. But a larger effort is under way this summer to use more locally-sourced products at all events on the Lenox campus.

Porter Square Ramen Shop Wants To Make Your Dreams Come True

July 16, 2014
Yume Wo Katare owner and ramen master Tsuyoshi Nishioka welcomes customers by yelling “Irashaimase!” from behind the long counter that separates his open kitchen and the shop's 18-seat dining room. (Andrea Shea/WBUR)

Eating ramen at Yume Wo Katare in Cambridge is seen as a path to personal fulfillment — if you can finish their giant bowl of ramen, you can do anything in life. That’s the concept. Some customers even write their dreams down and hang them on the restaurant’s walls.

Smell Ya Later: The World's First Transatlantic Scent Message Has Been Received

June 18, 2014

A Harvard University professor and inventor is behind the world’s first transatlantic scent message that was successfully transmitted Tuesday.

You Lend What? Seed Lending Libraries Crop Up Around Massachusetts

June 18, 2014
One of the goals of the seed lending library movement is to preserve antique fruit, vegetables and flowers, otherwise known as heirlooms. (Andrea Shea/WBUR)

There are lending libraries for tools, fishing poles, telescopes, even baking pans. Now gardeners are increasingly finding places to “borrow” too, as seed lending libraries crop up across the country.

The Boston Symphony Orchestra’s Cello ‘Boy Band’

February 01, 2013
From left to right: Mihail Jojatu, Blaise Dejardin, Alexandre Lecarme and Adam Esbensen at Symphony Hall in Boston. (Jesse Costa/WBUR)

Four members of the Boston Symphony Orchestra’s cello section are taking their beloved instruments into the spotlight with a group they’re calling the Boston Cello Quartet.

The Man Behind A Thousand Bows Gets A ‘Genius Grant’

October 03, 2012
Benoit Rolland, in his home bow-making studio (Courtesy of the John D. & Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation)

We visit Benoit Rolland in his Watertown studio, after he was awarded a $500,000 MacArthur Foundation “genius grant.”

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