BRIDGET WHELAN writer

August is archive month. Posts from the past

A night to remember….FROM THE ARCHIVE

On Fridays I am returning to some of my favourite posts from the past. To paraphrase BBC radio: this is your chance to read again…

theatre_acting_stageIn 1963 the British novelist and critic David Lodge was a student working on a satirical revue for the Birmingham Repertory Theatre.
The cast included the soon-to-become iconic actress Julie Christie. Behind the scenes was Malcolm Bradbury later author of The History Man and pioneer of post graduate creative writing degrees at the University of East Anglia.
In one sketch a radio was played live on stage. During the revue news of President Kennedy’s assassination was broadcast. The audience thought it was part of the show and tittered, only discovering the truth at the interval.

That happened in real life. Think what you could with that set up in a story….remember, though, the crucial difference between fiction and non fiction. Fiction has to be realistic.

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4 comments on “A night to remember….FROM THE ARCHIVE

  1. wendyannedarling
    February 13, 2015

    I’m not sure when the broadcast happened, Bridget, but do you remember hearing about what happened when ‘War of the Worlds’ was broadcast? As I heard it, many people sitting eating dinner believed that aliens were actually invading because the play sounded like a real, live broadcast.

    • bridget whelan
      February 13, 2015

      You can hear Orson Welles’ 1938 broadcast here (57 minutes) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Xs0K4ApWl4g

      Even today It sounds cutting edge and the morning after it was broadcast American newspaper headlines revealed the fear caused:
      “Radio Listeners in Panic, Taking War Drama as Fact” – the New York Times. “Radio Fake Scares Nation” – Chicago Herald and Examiner.
      “US Terrorized By Radio’s ‘Men From Mars’ – San Francisco Chronicle.

      Orson Welles was 23 years old at the time…

    • bridget whelan
      February 13, 2015

      Thanks for reminding me about this iconic radio story telling Wendy.

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This entry was posted on February 13, 2015 by in Muse and tagged , , .
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