Today we have news to share about this program. As you know, I announced my retirement last year. And at the end of the month, I'll sit in the host chair for the last time.

Our news today is happy news. Audie Cornish will be the new host of WEEKEND EDITION SUNDAY. No doubt she's familiar to you as NPR's Capitol Hill reporter and as a frequent guest host on this and other NPR programs. Audie is in the studio with me.

Audie, congratulations.

AUDIE CORNISH: Thank you so much. It's so amazing to be sitting across from you.

HANSEN: I know.

(Soundbite of laughter)

CORNISH: Usually I'm filling in.

HANSEN: Well, I have to tell you, after more than 20 years as host of this program, I really feel that it's going to be left in very great and very capable hands. So I'm extremely pleased that you're the choice as my replacement.

CORNISH: Thank for saying that. I mean this is, of course, incredibly bittersweet for me because I'm such a huge fan. So, you know, I want to have you around the office to especially get some advice.

HANSEN: Oh, I have some advice - big piece of advice - get your sleep.

(Soundbite of laughter)

HANSEN: My motto on Saturday nights is to be horizontal by 8 p.m. and unconscious by nine. And I think, you know, have fun with it. Be yourself. Let people know who you are.

CORNISH: Well, I had to ask: I'm a little bit of a Type A personality, so I like to do a little research and we found one of your first shows.

HANSEN: Oh dear.

CORNISH: I want to play at least just what we call the billboard, the opening of the show:


(Soundbite of broadcast)

HANSEN: From National Public Radio in Washington, this is WEEKEND EDITION. I'm Liane Hansen.

That is not me.

(Soundbite of laughter)

HANSEN: I was never that young.

(Soundbite of broadcast)

HANSEN: On this day 207 years ago, John Hansen - no relation - was elected chairman of the Continental Congress; Susan B. Anthony was fined $100 when she tried to vote for Ulysses S. Grant...

Can you hear how nervous I was? I mean, my voice is at least two octaves higher.

(Soundbite of broadcast)

HANSEN: Today is Sunday, November 5. NPR's Jacki Lyden is standing by in New York City. We'll talk about the men who...

And what you don't hear is actually that interview that I did do with Jacki Lyden...


HANSEN: was the first thing in the show. She was in New York. And I said, Jacki, you know, thanks for joining us and I started hearing this whine, this high pitch. I mean, we were getting feedback. And all I could think of to say was I was expecting feedback on my first show but not exactly this kind.

(Soundbite of laughter)

HANSEN: I also want to tell everybody that you're actually going to be winding down your Capitol Hill beat and you're not going to take the reins right away.

CORNISH: No. I'm going to take some time over the next few months to shake off the cobwebs of cloture votes and stuff I've been doing the last couple of years and to build up some exciting things for the fall. You'll be hearing from me here and there but I'll be back in a few months.

HANSEN: You'll also be back at the end of this month for my last on-air puzzle with puzzle master Will Shortz. Are you ready for that?

CORNISH: Yeah, absolutely not. I am going to be thinking about this every day between now and then and practicing. I'll be there with number two pencils sharpened, ready.

HANSEN: Good for you. You'll do fine. Ladies and gentlemen, NPR's Audie Cornish, the new host of WEEKEND EDITION SUNDAY. Thank you and I wish you all the best. You're going to have a great time.

CORNISH: Thank you, Liane.

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