Author Pages: George R. Stewart

SFFaudio News

Just added to our AUTHOR PAGES section…

George R. StewartGEORGE R. STEWART (1895-1980) Was an American novelist, toponymist, and professor of English at the University of California, Berkeley. His entire SFF output consisted of one Science Fiction novel Earth Abides (1949) and two mainstream novels with fantastic elements. Earth Abides is set in a post-apocalyptic landscape and depicts the remnants of humanity recovering from a global environmental disaster. A year after it was published it was turned into a two-part radio drama for the program Escape. It also served as inspiration for Stephen King‘s The Stand. Two of Stewart’s other novels (Storm and Fire) have elements of Fantasy (eponymous anthropomorphized characters). The former features a Pacific storm named Maria as its protagonist. This indirectly lead to the curious practice of the American National Weather Service using personal names to designate storms.

Listed on the new GEORGE R. STEWART page is the new Audible Frontiers audiobook version of Earth Abides as well as the 1950 radio drama.

Posted by Jesse Willis

NPR Radio Drama: Summer Mystery Series – July and August 2009

Aural Noir: News

Radio drama has been effectively dead in the United States of America for some time now. Or perhaps it has just been sleeping? Perhaps it will wake mid-July 2009?

WNIN Mystery Writers Festival

WNIN-FM has a special treat for our listeners this summer! In conjunction with the International Mystery Writer’s Festival in Owensboro, WNIN will air four weeks of original, contemporary radio dramas produced during the festival last year. The drama series will be hosted by Angela Lansbury, star of Murder She Wrote and the current Broadway hit Blithe Spirit.

The series will start Saturday, July 18th at 7pm, right after “A Prairie Home Companion”. The nine, original radio dramas were written by such famous authors as Ray Bradbury and Mary Higgins Clark. Other writers also contributed to this fantastic lineup, including P.J. Woodside of Madisonville, Kentucky. The dramas were recorded during performances before a live audience in the manner of the old-time radio shows.

As a bonus, WNIN will host a live broadcast from the RiverPark Center in Owensboro on Saturday, August 15th during the 2009 International Mystery Writer’s Festival. The American premiere of four plays written by Dame Agatha Christie will be performed, including the famous “Three Blind Mice”, which was part of a May, 1947 BBC program in honor of the eightieth birthday of Queen Mary. The world’s longest running play; “The Mousetrap” was inspired by “Three Blind Mice”. Two never before published works by Ms. Christie will be part of the evening’s live performance.

WNIN-FM is excited about bringing original radio dramas back to public radio. The dramas were performed by professional actors, utilizing the best techniques of old-time radio, but done in a contemporary fashion. The series was produced under direction from the award-winning talents of Judith Walcott and David Ossman of Firesign Theater.

Summer Mystery Series Schedule:

July 18 – It Burns Me Up
By Ray Bradbury
A murdered man lies on the floor and his stunned wife sits nearby. A police detective and the coroner discuss the victim while other police do their jobs. Reporters and neighbors crowd in at the door… but, the dead man on the floor tells the story before the ambulance arrives.

July 18 – My Gal Sunday
Adapted from Mary Higgins Clark’s best seller Crime of Passion
A delightful detective couple, the rich and handsome ex-president of the United States and his wife, an attractive Congresswoman, investigate the affair of a former Secretary of State and his murdered mistress.

July 25 – Hallie Bowers
By Harris Mack and Laura Campbell
War-time Christmas of 1941 leads a seasoned female private investigator and her younger brother from a nightclub dance floor to the tracks at L.A.’s Union Station when they take on a missing-girlfriend case from a handsome Navy Lieutenant.

Aug 1 – The Cajun P.I.
By P.J. Woodside
Former cop and now struggling Private Investigator John LeGrand is a junior college criminology instructor who begins a dangerous search for one of his own students who ends up missing during a class assignment. Some good-ol-boys – and not-so-good-ol-boys – and some attractive, but slightly dangerous, women round out the characters of this betrayal in the Bayou.

August 8 – Flemming: An American Thriller
By Sam Bobrick
A farce full of twists and turns that will leave you laughing as well as longing for a good drink. An unassuming middle-aged man decides to become a private detective in the midst of a mid-life crisis – but the life crisis is only beginning! Bobrick’s play is full of witty dialogue that fades in-and-out-of murders, madness, and many, many mixed drinks.

August 15 – Live Broadcast: American Premieres of FOUR “NEW” Thrillers
By Agatha Christie

* “Three Blind Mice” was part of a May 30, 1947 evening of program in honor of the eightieth birthday of Queen Mary. The BBC approached the Queen some months prior and asked for her special favorites. Amongst a selection of music and variety, she requested a new mystery by Agatha Christie, a writer the Queen deeply admired. The world’s longest running play “The Mousetrap” was inspired by “Three Blind Mice”.

* “Butter in a Lordly Dish” was first performed on the BBC on Tuesday, January 13, 1948 in a strand entitled Mystery Playhouse presents, “The Detection Club.” The play title comes from the Bible: Judges, 5:25: “He asked water, and she gave him milk; she brought forth butter in a lordly dish”. “He” refers to Sisera and “she” is Jael. (This work was never published before).

* “Yellow Iris” was first presented on the BBC National Program in 1937. The main part of the story takes place in a London restaurant. The play is unusual in that the producer interspersed the action with the performances of the cabaret artists who were supposedly on the stage at the restaurant during the murder. It features the famous Belgian Inspector Hercule Poirot, one of Christie’s audiences’ favorite detectives.

* “Personal Call”, the last thriller, was presented on the BBC Light Program on Monday, May 31, 1954. The play reuses the legendary character of Inspector Narracott from the 1931 novel “The Sittaford Mystery.” (This work was never published before)

Posted by Jesse Willis

"Canadia 2056" COUNTDOWN: T Minus 11 Days

SFFaudio News

Canadia 2056With its typical unassuming strategy I’ve heard absolutely nothing on CBC Radio One to promote their upcoming Radio Drama series Canadia. But some diligent searches have yielded up these tiny tidbits: The show is actually going to be called Canadia 2056 and is being described as…

“It is the year 2056. The United States has launched an armada to destroy an alien threat. Canada sends the nation’s only publicly-funded spacecraft, The Canadia – a ship with a single purpose. Flush. To plunge the Americans’ toilets. Travel with them.”

Another source describes it as “a celestially funny comedy series set in the year 2056 starring Matt Watts.” Matt Watts, who not only stars in the show but also writes it, describes the show as being “about an American Midshipman on a Canadian maintenance ship, in an American fleet headed towards war.”

The official CBC sub-site for the show is HERE, though there is nothing more there at the moment. Is this the Science Fiction/Comedy series we’ve all been waiting for? Tune in April 20th to find out. The show starts with its first episode:

Friday, April 20, 2007, 11:30 a.m on CBC Radio One (in Canada) and streaming online – worldwide.

The Green Hornet as a podcast

SFFaudio Online Audio

Podcast - The Green HornetThe Green Hornet Podcast is a podcasting of the 1930s to 1950s George W. Trendle superhero series. The premise of The Green Hornet was he was a newspaper publisher by day and vigilante by night. The Green Hornet fought crime with his high-powered car, the Black Beauty, utilized a gun that fired knockout gas instead of bullets and made good use of his fists. He was assisted by his Filipino valet, Kato. Kato would drive the Black Beauty, keep watch out for the police and crooks and even sometimes lend a helping fist. The show’s 16-year run ended on December 5, 1952. Below is just smattering of broadcasts from that time rearranged from the podcast feed to be in chronological order…

|MP3| Murder Across The Board – 07/05/1941
|MP3| Charity Takes It On The Chin – 02/21/1942
|MP3| Invasion Plans For Victory – 05/19/1942
|MP3| A Slip Of The Lips – 05/23/1942
|MP3| Murder Trips A Rat – 09/12/1942
|MP3| Torpedo On Wheels – 11/14/1942
|MP3| Sabotage Finds A Name – 11/21/1942
|MP3| Superhighway Robbery – 11/22/1942
|MP3| Stuffed Panda – 10/04/1945
|MP3| Ballots And Bluff – 11/01/1945
|MP3| Gas Station Protection Racket – 11/29/1945
|MP3| George Havens Secret – 01/22/1946
|MP3| Escape For Revenge – 01/29/1946
|MP3| Woman In The Case – 02/12/1946
|MP3| Underwater Adventure – 09/24/1946
|MP3| A Matter Of Evidence – 01/20/1948
|MP3| Hit And Run – 01/27/1948
|MP3| Face In The Television – 02/10/1949
|MP3| Devil’s Playground – 12/06/1950
|MP3| Pretenders To The Throne – 12/03/1952

Or for those using podcatchers, copy and paste the following link into your aggregator’s subscription field: