Once again, here I am struggling to do something I love and have never done before. A radio play. For those of you unfamiliar with radio plays, they were television before there was a television. Families would gather around their radios and listen in awe to the air waves float into their living rooms, those strange voices that became familiar over time and wallow in the mystery and magic of storytelling in one of its purest forms, the radio play.
I was introduced to this world when I was twelve-years-old. My father came home after work one day and after setting down his briefcase, he walked into the family room and told us to find a seat. He turned off the TV… yes, I know, but he is the parent, so even though we were horrified, we sat quietly while he took several 8-track tapes from a bag. Yes, 8-Tracks… yes, they were real… for those of you who are unfamiliar with 8-tracks, they were a form of tape (prior to CDs… even prior to cassette tapes) that people listened to and recorded on. Well, as these were the popular format of the time, my father purchased 8-tracks, but I digress. For on these big clunky tapes were the old-time radio shows my parents had listened to when they were kids, but I didn’t know this and listened attentively while my father explained. He would sit and listen for hours to all of these tales.
Flash Gordon, Superman, The Shadow and my personal favorite that would start my long time love affair with radio… the horror compilation. This tape consisted of one story each from the following: Lights Out!, Inner Sanctum, The Witch’s Tale and The Hermit’s Cave. I fell in love!! I would sit for hours in my dad’s chair and listen to this tape over and over. I could see everything laid out in my mind and I was enthralled.
When I got older, I began to search out the shows. It was an expensive endeavor as each cassette tape contained 2 shows. Then I discovered Ebay and the ever wonderful MP3. I know have over 400 different shows and I’m still not done. But again, I digress.
My passion has now bridged over into the opportunity to do my own radio play, and in 2 days I will be listening with anyone else who wants to listen to my first (and hopefully, not last) radio play. And hopefully, somewhere out there, a twelve-year-old little girl will experience all the things I did when I heard my first radio play.
May wonder and excitement be her first kiss into a brand new world, and open up the new horizons it did for me.