25 February 2015

Great Escapes - Airs Feb 25th

Voices of a Lynching from Radio Diaries
Poet and songwriter Abel Meeropol wrote the song Strange Fruit after seeing a photograph of two black teenagers hanging from a tree. But a third boy escaped being lynched that fateful day, 80 years ago, in Marion, Indiana. James Cameron was believed to be the only African American to have survived a lynching. Decades later, a box of recordings was found in a basement. They contained the recollections of people who witnessed or took part in the events of that day.

Tulsa's Slow Integration from This Land Press
John W. Franklin is the grandson of an African American lawyer who survived the 1921 Tulsa race riot.  In this recording made for the series "Just Passing Through," Franklin shares his grandfather’s memories of the race riot, his father’s memories of racism and his own memories of the beginnings of racial healing in Oklahoma.

Picture a Box from The Memory Palace
The incredible story of Henry "Box" Brown who escaped slavery by mailing himself to freedom.

18 February 2015

Best Actress - Airs Feb 18th

The Actress by Ruth Draper
Monologist Ruth Draper meticulously studied the people around her. She then spun these observations into rich, droll, poignant one-person sketches, which she presented at parties - eventually leading to great fame and stardom. John Gielgud described her as "the greatest individual performer that America has ever given." In the mid-50's, when she was 70 years old, she finally reluctantly, submitted herself to be captured on tape. We will hear one of these brilliant recordings...
On tour in Paris, a temperamental diva meets with a parade of callers. To some—the maid, her dog—she speaks French; while with others she employs heavily accented English. But when her impresario informs her that her favorite leading man will not be allowed to accompany her on an American tour, she displays her displeasure in a mellifluous Slavic-sounding tirade.

Queens of Bollywood from Tablet Magazine
Ruby Myers a.k.a. Sulochana. Esther Abraham a.k.a. Pramila. Farhat Ezekiel a.k.a. Nadira. From the earliest years of Bollywood, these and other Jewish actresses garnered starring roles. And while they may have looked somewhat exotic to moviegoers, they came from Baghdadi Jewish families who had been living in India for decades. Reporter Eric Molinsky speaks to film scholars, as well as friends and relatives of these once-beloved but now mostly forgotten stars of Indian cinema, to find out how they became the “go-to girls” for leading female roles in the 1920s, ’30s, and beyond. 

11 February 2015

The Music of Love - Airs Feb 11th

The Music of Love by Dheera Sujan
Where does timeless, brilliant, romantic music come from? In this program, pianist and astrologer Gary Goldschneider discusses how the music inspired by great amorous passion - pieces such as the theme for Romeo and Juliet, or Wagner's Liebestod - are perfect illustrations of Love's perfect partnership with death and suffering rather than long, happy marriages. Most of the great composers suffered when it came to their own love lives. So we wonder, can great art be created without that essential element of pain? Part of Vox Humana's series The Stars of Music.

04 February 2015

Silence and Noise - Airs Feb 4th

The Search for Silence from Noise: A Human History of Sound and Listening
In the noisy modern world, silence has become an ever more desirable – and fashionable – state. We read books about it; go on retreats to find it; and soundproof our living and working spaces in its name. But when we have it is it what we want? In the final episode of the series, Professor David Hendy of the University of Sussex considers the modern quest for quiet and asks whether what really makes us humans happy is a little noise.

Noise Retold by Matthew Herbert 
We will close our program with an epic sound-effect sound-scape. Mr. Herberthead of the New Radiophonic Workshopretells the story of the Noise: A Human History by remixing the entire series using only the sounds themselves - sans narration. Matthew is an electronic musician who is perhaps most famous for his controversial sound-art album 'One Pig.'

27 January 2015

Interrogators Without Pliers - Airs Jan 28th

Interrogators Without Pliers by Matt Thompson
The Chinese strategist and philosopher Sun Tzu wrote in 'The Art of War' that 'If you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles.' Which is obviously brilliant advice -- but finding out about the enemy is not often straightforward. In this program, Julian Putkowski sets aside all moral questions about torture and instead thinks about efficiency. What is the most effective way to extract high quality information out of the enemy? Surprisingly, Julian's unlikely role model is the enigmatic Nazi, Hanns Scharff. "Master InterrogatorScharff gently extracted a wealth of information from downed US fighter pilots by being both friendly and shockingly hospitableHe gained the reputation of magically getting all the answers he needed from the POWs, often with the prisoners never even realizing that their words, small talk or otherwise, were important pieces of the mosaic he was building.
Julian interviews: Dr. Gavin Oxburgh, an international expert on police questioning, Ali Soufan, a FBI special agent and author of 'The Black Banners,' and Hanns Scharff's son, Claudius.

20 January 2015

The Impact of a Sick Spouse - Airs Jan 21st

Outside the Dying by Conrad Bishop and Elizabeth Fuller
This is the dramatized journal of research biologist Julie Conaron. After a sharp decline in his health, Julie's husband was diagnosed with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), also known as Lou Gehrig's disease. Not knowing what else to do, she decided to keep a diary of her difficult, heartbreaking experience -- from the impact of the news, to becoming the care-giver, and eventual survivor of the man she loved. Winner of the Silver Reel Award for Radio Drama from the National Federation of Community Broadcasters.

Distance from The Memory Palace
The incredible and sad story of how the death of his wife inspired the accomplished and famed painter S.F.B. Morse to change our world. Over the next 45 years he would perfect and invent the electromagnetic telegraph and accelerate the speed at which humans communicate forever.

14 January 2015

When You’re Lonely, Life is Very Long - Airs Jan 14th

When You’re Lonely, Life is Very Long from Theory of Everything
Tonight, we let Benjamin Walker connect the dots for us -- After moving to New York alone, writer Olivia Laing discovered the truth about loneliness. She says it is a gift. Also, Eric Klinenberg explains why more and more people are choosing to live alone and why cities like New York must invest in housing that singletons actually want to live in, such as the types they have in Scandinavian countries. In Denmark when someone dies alone, and no one claims the body, the authorities put an ad in the newspaper calling for Possible Relatives. This is also the title of a photo-book by photographer Tina Enghoff. She tells us about the pictures she took of the apartments after the dead were removed. Some of these bodies went undiscovered for months.