Skip to main content

Posts

Radio Stock Troupe Does Well

The Milwaukee Journal – Nov 8, 1942      Radio Stock Troupe Does Well SEVEN actors, an actress and a director are today earning a place in dramatic history. They are radio’s first and only stock company, heard on the Cavalcade of America ” and known as the Cavalcade Players. Since that day in the dim past when men first entertained their fellows with ballads and play, actors have banded together to form “stock companies” that left their mark on theatrical history. From Euripides of Greece to America’s famous chautauquas, groups of actors have traveled together, worked together and suffered together. Today the Cavalcade Players form another noteworthy of radio. The hardships of travel, the tribulations of the road, the grease paint and footlights, the irregular work are replaced by an NBC microphone and a luxurious, air conditioned studio. Aside from somewhat unusual working hours, the players live normal lives—more like businessmen then the battered actors
Recent posts

Exploding Those Popular Myths About Bing

THE MILWAUKEE JOURNAL - SCREEN and RADIO Sunday, February 6, 1938 Exploding Those Popular Myths About Bing Crooner Crosby Is Pegged as a Lazy Chap Who Sings by Ear and Buys His Clothes on Impulse. This Chat With His Mother Shows What a Poor Characterization That Is for a Busy, Canny and Highly Energetic Person By Lucie Neville HOLLYWOOD says Bing Crosby is a lazy guy who gets all the breaks if you were to accuse Bing himself, he’d only grin and amiably agree. But there aren’t any four-leaf clovers in the Crosby shamrock patch, according to his mother. She says he hasn’t a lazy bone in his body and what people call hick is hard work. She would correct a number of other popular misconception about her son: That he doesn’t know anything about music, that he prefers noisy clothes, that he’s happy-go-lucky, how he got his nickname. It’s Bing’s business of course, if he wants to let people keep on thinking such things she lets you understand. Bing’s and Larry’s

Oh, Henry-y!

Oh, Henry-y! ABOUT four years ago Clifford Goldsmith wrote and George Abbott produced a play about the doings of a harum-scarum high school lad with a penchant for getting into ludicrous trouble. The play was “What a Life,” but many people have since forgotten the original title in favor of the name of its hero, which was Henry Aldrich . Young Master Aldrich has become a bit of a national figure, whose doing on the screen and over the airwaves are followed by millions. He has ever been a “fat” part for the actors who have portrayed him. Above are pictured some of the principal Henry Aldriches of stage, films and radio. At the upper left is Ezra Stone, who had the original role in the play and for more than two years was Henry Aldrich in the tremendously successful “ Aldrich Family ” of radio. The bumptious young Stone crashed Broadway when he was only 20 years old, and now, at the ripe old age of 24, is through with the Aldrich setup for the duration of the war. He ente

Meet Mama and Papa of Abie

The Milwaukee Journal – Nov 22, 1942    Meet Mama and Papa of Abie BEHIND the folksy characters of Mr. and Mrs. Cohen in “ Abie’s Irish Rose ” ( NBC -WTMJ, Saturdays, 7 p. m.) are two distinguished Yiddish actors of more than a generation of stand and motion picture experience. They are Menashua Skulnick, Polish born actor often called “a second Charlie Chaplin,” and Anna Appel, about whom Brooks Atkinson once wrote in the New York Times, “She could play a telephone book.” Miss Appel, born in Rumania, came to America 35 years ago with her parents and played her first part in a charity school play in Montreal. Now she has chalked up 28 years of successful performances. She was an active member of the Yiddish Art theater in New York for 17 years and has been a star character actress on Broadway and in motion pictures. Her first bid from Hollywood and thought was a prank. Late one night her telephone rang. It was long distance. A strange voice asked: “How would yo

Kids’ Programs Worry Everybody but Kids

The Milwaukee Journal – Nov 8, 1942      Kids’ Programs Worry Everybody but Kids By Richard Match In the New York Tunes “LOOK—up in the sky!” “It’s a bird!” “It’s a plane!” “It’s Superman !” These magic syllables are “Once upon a time--,” 1942 style. They introduce the time hallowed fairy tale as the modern American youngster knows it and wants to know it. Every day, as supper time draws near, young America, aged 7 to 14, rushes for home,  hearth and radio to absorb his or her daily hour of modern children’s “literature.” Young ears listen avidly as the heroic Captain Midnight and five or six other modern Jack the Giant Killer spend 15 minutes ranging a 1942 Never-Never Land. The old fantastic two headed giant has been replaced by master spies and super-criminals. The fair damsel in distress is now a stolen airplane design. And a twin motored monoplane takes Jack farther and faster than seven league boots ever did. None of that hard to believe, o

Hope Gets No Help in Books

The Milwaukee Journal – Sep 27, 1942 Hope Gets No Help in Books By Larry Feathers HOLLYWOOD , Calif.—Thousands of town wits and barbershop cutups throughout the land aspire to the thrones of Jack Benny , Bob Hope , Fred Allen and other top comics of screen and radio—and all entertain the same idea how their goal can be achieved. What to do? Simple! Start off by buying a large filing cabinet and cluttering it with old joke books. Then go through the tomes and “modernize” the antique puns. Thus, where a reference is made to horse car in Joe Miller’s classic volume, the fledgling craftily substitutes “trolley,” repeats the gag to himself—and has visions of wowing ‘em. Nothing to it at all, according to youngsters who aspire to profitable laugh provoking careers. In fact, they firmly believe that Jack Benny and company get by today by pursuing exactly such methods. “Just a lotta silly bunk,” says a rather successful young fellow named Lester Townes Hope, co

Phil Harrises Re-Estimated, And the Verdict Is ‘Good’

St. Peterburg Times – Jan 31, 1950                   RADIO IN REVIEW Phil Harris es Re-Estimated, And the Verdict Is ‘Good’ By JOHN CROSBY Probably no show in radio ever started out less auspiciously than the Phil Harris – Alice Faye operation back in the Fall of 1946. Radio critics everywhere shuddered in rare unison. Looking back through my yellowing clippings on this program, I discover that first few episodes were largely kissing games, which immensely simplified the task of the writers. Either Phil was kissing Alice. Or both of them were kissing the children. What little dialogue there was revolved around this osculation, more or less reviewing it. “Ya ain’t giving, honey,” Mr. Harris would mutter, a bad notice for Miss Faye. Or he’d exclaim –there’s no more exclamatory comedian in the business than Harris—“You blond beautiful bundle of dynamite! Put your arms around me and tell me how much you love me!” While not exactly opp