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QP in Sioux City & elsewhere

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MS
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Posted 10/18/07 - 10:39 AM:

1. More QP in Sioux City:
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A live, on-stage Halloween-season performance of classic radio mystery dramas will be performed at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 18th at the Orpheum Theatre by the Great Plains Radio Theatre Project, a Sioux City based, non-profit organization that brings radio drama alive to Siouxland. Selected radio scripts will include the 1949 radio adaptation of George Orwell's classic novel 1984 as the centerpiece. Two other spooky radio dramas written by Wyllis Cooper for the Quiet, Please! radio series entitled The Thing on the Fourble Board (1948) and Don’t Tell Me About Halloween (1947) will be performed. These performances will be accentuated by both digital and acoustical sound effects, as well as Dave Soelberg playing the "Mighty Wurlitzer" organ. As an added attraction, members of the Western Iowa Tech Community College choir will sing the radio commercial jingles that were aired during these radio dramas. This special one-night event will be broadcast live on Sioux City's KSCJ radio (1360 AM). ...
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Source: www.orpheumlive.com/events/...s/showEvent.php?p=1&ID=295



2. QP in Franklin, PA - Here's an excerpt from a post in the OTRDigest:
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Our bunch of OTR actors here in Franklin PA are on track to do our fifth night of OTR live in front of anybody who has seven dollars. It's our Halloween show, so it should be a goodie. We're doing "Good Ghost" from Quiet Please, "The House in Cypress Canyon" from Suspense and Ozzie and Harriet's "Haunted House" episode. ...
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No further info is given.


3. The Middlebury Radio Theater of Thrills & Suspense recently posted their version of Cooper's Lights Out play "Death Robbery." An mp3 file can be downloaded from this page:

http://mrtots.com/blog/2007/09/23/130/

It's described as being "From the series that brought you Cat Wife and Slurp! Goes the Ameoba, Death Robbery. Enough Said." I think it's a little more listenable than their versions of Inquest and Amoeba -- but that may not be saying much.

3. Speaking of Amoeba, it was scheduled to air on a Florida radio station back in late August or early September:

The Charlotte Players' Readers Theater performs two 30-minute radio dramas, "Slurp Goes the Amoeba" and "The Saga of Port Charlotte Pete," starting at 10 a.m. Saturday on WKII 1070 AM

Source: news-press.com


4. Recent blog post about the QP episode "Light the Lamp for Me" includes a link to quietplease.org and the blogger's alternate ending to the story:

http://roborant.info/main.do?entry=1370
MS
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Posted 10/19/08 - 10:14 AM:

1. The Middlebury Radio Theater of Thrills and Suspense, which is basically the radio drama club at a Vermont liberal arts college, keeps doing their not-always-faithful recreations of Quiet Please and Lights Out scripts. They recently did QP's "Clarissa" and were scheduled to do Cooper's "The Coffin in Studio B" from LO. But, for what I think is the first time, they also tackled one of the lost QP episodes, "Three Sides to a Story." A 16MB mp3 file is downloadable from their blog:

mrtots.com/2008/10/quiet-pl...ase-three-sides-to-a-story

I think this is the script that Dr. Hand, in his book about horror radio, compared to Sartre's "No Exit."

2. Meanwhile, in Connecticut, QP's "Symphony in D Minor" was scheduled to be performed last month:
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The popular Radio Drama Series at Fairfield University opens with "Thrillers and Killers" on Friday at 8 p.m. and on Saturday at 3 and 8 p.m. in the Wien Experimental Theatre of the Quick Center for the Arts. The program includes "The Shadow" about a mysterious woman from India, "The Lone Ranger" about how he met up with Tonto and began his quest for justice and "Quiet, Please" about a diabolical murder plot. The show concludes with Five Minute Mysteries for the audience to solve. For tickets ($25), call (203) 254-4010 or (877) ARTS-396 or go online at www.quickcenter.com.
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3. The Cooper LO script that seems to get performed every once in a while is the untitled one about the giant amoeba; the one that probably influenced Arch Oboler's Chicken Heart. The KZSC Drama Hour in Santa Cruz, CA was scheduled to do it last month and the WTCT Players of Topeka, KS apparently did it over the summer. Excerpts from an article in the July 18, 2008 Topeka Capital-Journal:
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... The WTCT Players started as a class in 1999 but proved to be so successful it has become a standing company of TCT, staging six to eight performances per year there and is available for hire for off-site productions, said Joanna Daffron, the company's director for the past three years. ...

A scientific experiment gone wrong is the subject of tonight's third script, "Slurp! Goes the Amoeba," a Dec. 4, 1935, episode of "Lights Out."

[Marc] Rapp plays Dr. Baumeister, whose "Experiment No. 331. Synthetic protoplasm. Formula B-22" creates sort of a living blob that can take on different shapes and personas by reading humans' minds, then devours folks with slurping sounds created on stage by Dick Parton as the Amoeba.

The "Slurp!" cast also includes [Eddie] Shirron as the announcer, [Tom] Romig as lab assistant Laferski and Bonnie Parton as Dr. Baumeister's wife.
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Paul
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Posted 10/25/08 - 2:59 AM:

Good to hear "Three Sides" at last, even with imperfect acting.

MS wrote:
The Cooper LO script that seems to get performed every once in a while is the untitled one about the giant amoeba; the one that probably influenced Arch Oboler's Chicken Heart.


Sounds like Cooper re-adapted it into Quiet Please's 100,000 Diameters.

Edited by Paul on 10/25/08 - 3:05 AM
MS
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Posted 11/03/08 - 8:36 AM:

Yes, it was good to hear it. I've always wondered why more of the lost episodes haven't been attempted. Somebody somewhere did a version of "100,000 Diameters" (with Jack French in Chappell's role) but that's the only other one I can think of off the top of my head.

Some time ago in the OTR Digest (an old time radio mailing list), someone asked if the Gotham Radio Players (a New York City-based group that recreates lost radio plays) had ever done a "Quiet Please" script. The troupe's director gave an interesting response:
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No, we've never done a lost "Quiet, Please" recreation. The main reason for this is that, although I'm a fan of the series, from a production standpoint they just wouldn't be very interesting shows to recreate. Most of the episodes lean very heavily on first-person narration and have minimal sound effects, so much so that they're essentially one-person shows with music. Now we only do a handful of productions each year and I have nearly 20 actors now in Gotham's regular repertory company. We can't use every actor in every show, but I do try to find scripts that will allow us to use more than just one or two people. That makes the production process more communal and fun for all involved. I think our smallest cast was 4 people and an average size cast involves around 6 actors. We had our largest cast this past summer, with 15 people.

Steve Lewis
director, Gotham Radio Players
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Here are some more recent performances of Cooper scripts:

1. Just as they threatened, the Middlebury Radio Theater troupe did "The Coffin in Studio B." Their mp3 file is downloadable from here:

mrtots.com/2008/10/lights-o...ut-the-coffin-in-studio-b/

2. Meanwhile, in South Carolina, the First Baptist Church School Drama Department was scheduled to tackle the LO amoeba script (along with what I suspect is the Inner Sanctum version of "The Horla" and "The Vampire's Desire" from The Hermit's Cave):
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FALL 2008 PRODUCTION / WFBS, Little Theatre of the air presents: / Radio Theatre / Tales of Terror / in 3 acts / The Horla / Slurp! Goes the Amoeba / The Vampire's Desire / 7 p.m. October 28, 2008 at The Village Playhouse in Mt. Pleasant.
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2. Meanwhile, in Wisconsin, an October 2008 issue of the Appleton Post-Crescent reports on ... :
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... "An Evening of Radio — Halloween," an old-time radio program that the organization Wega Arts is presenting in live theater format later this month at the Gerold Opera House in downtown Weyauwega.

The program will include mostly episodes from 1940s radio shows, with a few new twists on original plots. Many of the shows have Halloween themes, including the "Quiet, Please!" drama "Don't Tell Me About Halloween," a tale about a man who married a witch, and the "Lights Out" thriller "The Dark," in which a doctor and his ambulance driver stumble upon a ghastly mystery.
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3. Meanwhile, according to the Oct 31, 2008 Sioux Falls (SD) Argus Leader:
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The South Dakota Public Broadcasting radio network will air the Great Plains Radio Theatre production of "The Thing on the Fourble Board" at noon.

The 1948 radio drama written by Wyllis Cooper was performed live and recorded on the stage of the Orpheum Theatre in Sioux City, Iowa, on Oct. 18, 2007. The story focuses on an oil rig worker who discovers an ugly creature from the depths of the earth that exercises unusual powers over its keeper. The radio drama originally was broadcast on the Mutual Broadcasting Network in 1948. The Great Plains Radio Theatre version will feature Paul Guggenheimer of South Dakota Public Broadcasting, who is also vice president of the non-profit radio group.

The performance is being presented with enhanced digital sound effects not used in the original broadcast as well as dramatic music provided by the Orpheum Theatre's "Mighty Wurlitzer" pipe organ.
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4. Meanwhile, last summer in Olathe, KS, the public library performed Cooper's adaptation of Charlotte M. Russell's "The Topaz Flower" from the series "Crime Club," according to the library's website:
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On June 28th, library staff presented a radio mystery theater program, in which we brought to life the mystery The Topaz Flower. Complete with sound effects… and commercial breaks… the program was enjoyed by more than 300 people. We had a lot of fun putting on the show, and we hope you enjoyed it too!
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Some photos of the cast and crew in action:

http://www.olathe.lib.ks.us/kidsblog/?p=160


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