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Archive for the ‘Radio drama’ Category

Happy Birthday, Clayton “Bud” Collyer!

“I never try to force people into impossible situations on the shows,” observed Clayton “Bud” Collyer to Radio Mirror in June of 1953.  One of those “shows” Bud was referencing was TV’s Break the Bank, once described by Mirror as “the highest-paying quiz program in the world.”  Bank had been a radio mainstay since 1945, but its peak of popularity occurred when […]

Happy Birthday, Joseph Julian!

At the time I borrowed Joseph Julian’s This Was Radio from my hometown public library as a kid, I wasn’t all that familiar with the distinguished actor born Joseph Shapiro in St. Marys, Pennsylvania on this date in 1911.  Granted, most of the radio performers with whom I was familiar were those associated with larger-than-life characters—like Brace […]

“The story of your police force in action.”

Joe Friday: Room 5.  That was the title of the script for a proposed TV pilot, written by Herb Ellis and Jack Webb, as 1948 was marching to a close.  If this treatment about a “private eye” had been picked up, we might not be celebrating an anniversary today…for it was in 1949 on this date that […]

Happy Birthday, Herbert Marshall!

The man born Herbert Brough Falcon Marshall on this date in 1890 is revered by classic movie mavens as one of the premiere leading men in motion pictures in the 1930s and 1940s.  Marshall graced so many classics, among them Trouble in Paradise (1932), Foreign Correspondent (1940), The Letter (1940), The Little Foxes (1941), and Duel in the Sun (1946).  What movie fans may not […]

A (Birth)Day in the Life of Dennis Day

Shortly after its premiere in 1932, The Jack Benny Program started a tradition of featuring tenor vocalists to entertain during the musical portions of the show.  James Melton, Frank Parker, and Michael Bartlett accepted the singing chores in the early years of the series, with Kenny Baker (who debuted on Jack’s show in 1935) sticking with the gig the […]

Happy Birthday, Jack Johnstone!

A September 24, 1938 edition of Radio Guide describes a “radio first” executed by actress Alice Frost and Jack Johnstone, the writer-producer of the popular Johnny Presents.  The blurb describes how the program had just gotten underway when Frost ran up to the microphone yelling “But I want to ask a question, Dr. Carrington!”  “The audience sat spellbound, […]

Happy Birthday, Norman Corwin!

The man born Norman Lewis Corwin on this date in 1910 is universally recognized as “the poet laureate of radio.”  Norman Corwin wrote and produced many of the most memorable broadcasts in the aural medium and was one of the first artists to use entertainment as a means to address the serious social issues of […]

Happy Birthday, Frances Robinson!

“Danger’s my stock-in-trade,” observed George Valentine weekly on the popular Mutual crime drama Let George Do It.  For actress Frances Robinson, who played George’s loyal gal Friday, Claire “Brooksie” Brooks, her stock-in-trade was playing girlfriends and secretaries (and in some cases both) on radio.  From Perry Mason to Murder and Mr. Malone, Robinson supplemented a busy movie career with […]