Ray Bradbury On Radio

(4.7 stars; 9 reviews)

Ray Bradbury’s stories lend themselves well to radio, so it’s no surprise that there have been so many adaptations over the years — some adapted by Bradbury himself. Radio also played a pivotal role in Bradbury’s development as a writer early in his career. I’ve tried to add some context where relevant, most from Jonathan R. Eller’s book Becoming Ray Bradbury which I highly recommend to anyone interested in Bradbury’s early career. Other valuable resources were Dr. Phil Nichols’ essays on Bradbury adaptations and J. David Goldin’s RadioGOLDINdex .  This collection doesn’t include any Bradbury adaptations from the BBC, which I’ve collected here . I tried to include the best possible recordings I could find, including lossless FLAC files whenever possible.  1946-05-17 Mollé Mystery Theatre - Killer, Come Back to Me! In March 1945, Bradbury began to send stories to Young & Rubicam, the New York advertising firm that handled the writing talent for NBC’s very popular Mollé Mystery Theatre . The firm had already approached Bradbury’s agent, Julius Schwartz, for stories by two other authors he represented — Robert Bloch and the late Stanley Weinbaum. Bradbury’s first submission was a crime story called “Autopsy,” later retitled “Killer, Come Back to Me!” when it was published in Detective Tales in July 1944. Bradbury was a young writer trying to get published wherever he could, so he wrote stories in a wide range of genres — not just science fiction. Eventually Frank Telford, Young & Rubicam’s director for the Friday night Mollé show, approached Schwartz and Mike Tilden of Detective Tales for permissions. It was a slow process, with Joseph Ruscoll adapting Bradbury’s interesting but somewhat lackluster story into a very good noirish play for radio. When it finally hit the airwaves, the show starred a young Richard Widmark in the lead role. This was before he became a film star and you can hear the beginnings of Tommy Udo, his breakout character from Kiss of Death . It was the beginning of a significant Bradbury radio presence, spanning the final decade of radio’s golden age.  (Thanks to Jim Widner at OTR.com for some of this info) 1947-01-02 World Security Workshop - The Meadow An award-winning one-act radio play adapted by Bradbury himself from a then-unpublished story of the same title. The story was eventually published in 1953. Among Bradbury’s story fragments that never made it to publication were a dozen discarded pages of a radio script called “Masks” which includes Bradbury’s notation that it was “a play for the World Security Workshop .” The Masks is one of Bradbury’s unfinished novels, and it is likely that he adapted it as a radio play at about the same time he wrote the radio play for “The Meadow.” These “Masks” fragments have the same kind of “big idea” tone that surfaces in “The Meadow,” and both of these scripts are inspired to some degree by what Bradbury would later call the “great notion” radio shows of Norman Corwin, who (first as a broadcaster and later as a friend) was a great influence on him throughout the 1940s.  1947-08-20 Nelson Olmsted's Short Stories - The Night A writer-friend recommended Nelson Olmsted’s Chicago-based NBC storytelling broadcasts to Bradbury and he wasted no time getting a copy of his short story collection Dark Carnival to Olmsted’s network office. Chicago was in decline as a major NBC hub—most of the nationally broadcast shows originated on the coasts, but Olmsted still reached a number of network affiliates with his daily fifteen-minute morning story readings. During the 1947–48 season, he broadcast four Bradbury stories: “The Powerhouse,” “The Miracles of Jamie,” “One Timeless Spring,” and “The Night” – a story about a mother searching for her missing son in a summertime ravine. 1947-11-13 Suspense - Riabouchinska Adapted by Mel Dinelli from Ray Bradbury's then-unpublished novella "And So Died Riabouchinska" that tells the story of a murder solved by a ventriloquist's dummy. Produced & directed by William Spier. Starring Joseph Kearns, Wally Maher and Lurene Tuttle. This marked Bradbury’s debut on the CBS radio show Suspense . William Spier soon bought two more unpublished Bradbury stories, and adaptations aired during the show’s 1948 summer and fall seasons: “Summer Night” and “The Screaming Woman.” In its 20-year run, Suspense produced close to a dozen Bradbury adaptations. Mel Dinelli also adapted “Riabouchinska” for television’s Alfred Hitchcock Presents starring Claude Rains and a young Charles Bronson. 1948-07-15 Suspense - Summer Night Adapted by Robert L. Richards from Ray Bradbury’s original story about a mad "Lipstick Killer" on the loose and a spinster all alone in a big house. Produced & directed by Anton M. Leader. Starring Ida Lupino as Anna. “Summer Night” was also presented on the Suspense television show on February 19, 1952, but that episode is not known to be available at this time. 1948-11-25 Suspense - The Screaming Woman Adapted by Silvia Richards from Ray Bradbury's short story about a little girl who hears a screaming woman who is buried alive. Produced & directed by Anton M. Leader. Starring Margaret O'Brien. The same story was later adapted into a TV movie of the same name in 1972 starring Olivia de Havilland and Joseph Cotten. 1949-10-16 Radio City Playhouse - Duet Adaptations of two short stories: "The Lake" by Ray Bradbury and "Collectors Item" by Roald Dahl. Adapted, produced and directed by Harry W. Junkin. Starring Bill Lipton, Leon Janney and Connie Lembcke. “The Lake” was first published in the May, 1944 issue of Weird Tales , then selected for August Derleth’s Rinehart horror anthology Who Knocks? in 1946. Bradbury was a big fan of Derleth’s Arkham House anthologies Beyond the Wall of Sleep and Sleep No More , so this meant a great deal to him. His feelings about Radio City Playhouse ’s producer/director Harry W. Junkin were a little more complicated. Junkin greatly admired the dramatic qualities of Bradbury’s short fiction, adapting both “The Lake” and “The Wind” for his series. But according to Jonathan R. Eller’s book Becoming Ray Bradbury “to Bradbury, Junkin’s admiration seemed to have a dark side that was more likely a manifestation of writer’s anxiety combined with envy of Bradbury’s originality.” 1949-10-30 Radio City Playhouse - The Wind Bradbury’s tale of sentient storms adapted, produced and directed by Harry W. Junkin. Starring Lyle Sudrow, Bryna Raeburn, James Monks. “The Wind” was one of Bradbury’s first breakout stories, published in the March 1943 issue of Weird Tales and inspired by a couple nature fantasies that Bradbury read years earlier in the pages of Weird : “Child of the Winds” (May 1936) and “Bride of the Lightning” (January 1939), both written by Edmond Hamilton who would soon become an important mentor to the young Bradbury. In Becoming Ray Bradbury , Jonathan Eller refers to the fall of 1949 through fall of 1950 as Bradbury’s “miracle year,” because it’s when he broke through in a big way. In that one year, he submitted three of his most significant works to publishers: The Martian Chronicles, The Illustrated Man, and “The Fireman,” the early novella form of Fahrenheit 451 . On top of that, he’d finally broken into major market publications, with stories published in Collier’s, Esquire and the Saturday Evening Post. Along with authors Robert Heinlein, Kurt Vonnegut and John Wyndham, Bradbury was proving that science fiction could appeal to an audience beyond the pulps.  1950-05-27 Dimension X - To the Future Adapted by Ernest Kinoy from Bradbury’s story that would later be published as “The Fox and the Forest” in The Illustrated Man . Directed by Edward King and produced by Van Woodward. A couple from the future escapes back to 1950 to avoid the horrors of war in their time. The "searchers" are sent to bring them back. “To the Future” was first published in the May 13, 1950 issue of Collier’s , just a couple weeks before this Dimension X broadcast. Knox Burger was the new fiction editor at Collier ’s, who cultivated a fruitful relationship with Bradbury by publishing six of his stories over the next two years, including “There Will Come Soft Rains” which ran a week earlier in the May 6 edition (and would get its own Dimension X adaptation the following month). 1950-06-02 Escape - Mars Is Heaven! Adapted by Morton Fine & David Friedkin, produced & directed by William N. Robson. An unusual treatment of the sci-fi classic (even though it was the first). Stuart Novins opens the show on Earth with a You Are There type broadcast. As Phil Nichols points out in his essay “ Re-Presenting Mars: Bradbury's Martian Stories in Media Adaptation ,” this introduces a novel framing device of purporting to be live radio coverage of the first rocket to Mars, presumably to help the story fit into the genre of the series. The adaptation takes many of the sensory details directly from Bradbury’s story: iron deer on the lawn, piano music flowing from the house. It also modifies the story to include a love interest. 1950-06-17 Dimension X - There Will Come Soft Rain –  Zero Hour Adapted by George Lefferts from Ray Bradbury's short stories, directed by Edward King and produced by Van Woodward. Two stories: one about the death of the house of the future. The other tells the story of the coming of "Drill" and the game of “Invasion." Bradbury has acknowledged that “Zero Hour” (along with another of his best-known tales of this period, “The Veldt,”) owe a great deal to the influence of writers C.L. Moore and Henry Kuttner, in terms of tone and shock effect. In a very real sense, Henry Kuttner encouraged Bradbury to write some of the best science fiction that he would attempt outside of the Martian Chronicles group of stories. Kuttner, a fellow graduate of Los Angeles High School, was one of the first professional writers that Bradbury had met when he joined the LASFL in 1937. It was Kuttner’s mastery of plotting that proved most important to Bradbury, but Kuttner also passed on other lessons in his sometimes mysterious way of mentoring. At one point he got Bradbury’s attention by telling him that he would kill him if he didn’t stop writing purple prose. Kuttner’s actual cure was only slightly less drastic than the figurative one: he made Bradbury type out stories from various science fiction pulps (especially Amazing Stories ), word for word, and report back on the effectiveness of the plot, narrative hook, and pace of each tale. Thirty years later, Bradbury could still recall Kuttner’s words: “You give away all your steam. No wonder you never finish your stories. You talk them all out. Shut up.” He soon locked into the habit of writing a first draft in a single burst of creativity—no more self-conscious discussions with other writers, no more second-guessing himself. His writing habit became a quotidian fever, rising each day without interruption from any other voices. As a young writer, Bradbury was learning to walk the line between unrestrained individualism and the effective use of technique. Kuttner could show Bradbury how to follow a method without surrendering creativity and soon confided as much to his young friend: “I object to forced rules in writing. They tend toward artificiality. Stick to the rules, but vary from them when it seems best for story value. I myself figure I learned the principles only so I could forget them when necessary.” Thanks to mentors like Kuttner and Leigh Bracket, Bradbury developed the ability to focus on writing instead of talking about writing and to channel his passion into an effective writing regimen. In later years, this became a mantra for him: “You’ve got to save that passion—don’t talk about it, go do it, and don’t intellectualize it. Don’t plan ahead, but surprise yourself.” 1950-07-07 Dimension X - Mars is Heaven! Adapted by Ernest Kinoy, directed by Edward King and produced by Van Woodward. The story of what happened when mankind first landed on Mars, on April 20, 1987. As Dr. Phil Nichols points out in his essay “ Re-Presenting Mars: Bradbury's Martian Stories in Media Adaptation ,” “unlike the Fine & Friedkin adaptation for Escape , in this version, events unfold almost exactly as in Bradbury’s story, although the adaptor, Ernest Kinoy, makes much more of the procedural detail of landing on another planet, in a similar way to the feature film Destination Moon , released the same year. Kinoy also places emphasis on the space crew being a military outfit, intensifying Black’s conflict with his crew. Where Bradbury’s story gives visual clues to the whereabouts of the rocket ship - green lawn, large house, iron deer ornaments – Kinoy chooses to add an audio clue: a rooster is heard crowing. However, he fails to capitalize on another audio clue which Bradbury provides: the sound of a piano. Kinoy doesn’t kill the Earthmen. Instead, his version ends with a chase – the evil Martians pursue the captain back to his abandoned space rocket, where he locks himself in and radios for help. As with most of the adaptations of “Mars is Heaven!”, this one exploited the horror aspect. Stephen King has claimed this exact episode as being one of his defining early experiences of horror. It is, in fact, fairly typical of the Dimension X series as a whole.” 1950-08-18 Dimension X - The Martian Chronicles Adapted by Ernest Kinoy, directed by Jack Kuney and produced by Van Woodward. Human explorers arrive on Mars in successive waves of rocketships, discovering the cities of its native inhabitants and eventually establishing their own colonies. Adapted from a number of stories that form part of Bradbury's composite novel The Martian Chronicles. Dimension X producer Van Woodward and his wife Deedee collaborated on a musical version of “Mars Is Heaven!” as well. Woodward had secured an option for stage rights and he hoped to bring his experience as a radio writer to the challenge of adapting science fiction for the musical stage. But even though it had Bradbury’s enthusiastic support and the Woodwards carefully planned and negotiated throughout 1951, the musical never won the necessary financial backing.  In the spring of 1952, Alan Jay Lerner and Frederick Loewe approached Bradbury with an offer for another musical adaptation – this time for the entire Martian Chronicles. As collaborators they had already had success with the 1948 musical Brigadoon , but their great stage and film successes were still off in the future. Lerner was just coming off of a pair of 1951 screenwriting triumphs with Royal Wedding and An American in Paris , but in spite of his busy schedule he found the Chronicles worth considering for adaptation. Two dinner discussions with Loewe, Lerner, and Lerner’s wife, actress Nancy Olson, failed to establish a working arrangement. Bradbury sensed that this was for the best—there were far more conventional properties and concepts waiting in the wings for the Lerner and Loewe team, and he felt that these would inevitably push the risky Chronicles project into the background. 1950-09-21 Suspense - The Crowd Adapted by Morton Fine and David Friedkin, who had already taken some creative liberties by adding a You Are There -style framing story to the “Mars is Heaven!” adaptation they wrote for Escape. Here, they lean on their extensive experience writing detective programs to turn Bradbury’s fantasy-horror story into a detective thriller. “The Crowd” originally appeared in Weird Tales in 1943 and was inspired by a multiple-fatality car accident Bradbury had witnessed shortly after moving to Los Angeles in 1934. That accident left him with a lifelong fear of automobiles, but writing “The Crowd” had managed to release some of the effects of his recurring nightmares.  1950-09-29 Dimension X - And The Moon Be Still as Bright Adapted by Ernest Kinoy, directed by Edward King and produced by Van Woodward. Explorers from Earth have wiped out the Martian race with chicken pox. But only one man is willing to stand up for the civilization they left behind. The dialectic that emerges from conversations between Captain Wilder and his renegade crewman Spender centers on a question that Bradbury would later describe this way: Do we go to Mars as suppliants, or as conquerors? The crew sees no value in the fragile treasures of the dying Martian culture, and even Captain Wilder feels that displacement of the old culture is inevitable. Spender feels otherwise, and is willing to kill his own shipmates if this will buy a little time for the old culture to survive.  Bradbury has always maintained that the central insights of “—And the Moon Be Still as Bright” were sparked by Joseph Wood Krutch’s The Modern Temper . He purchased a copy of The Modern Temper in January 1947, about the same time that Lord Byron’s “So, We’ll Go No More A-Roving” jumped out in his mind as the perfect evocation of loss that he wanted to bring into his next Martian story. Bradbury’s wife Maggie had read the poem to him, and the first stanza’s closing line quickly became the title. By late March, the tale was complete and sold to Thrilling Wonder Stories that summer, billed as a novelette. “—And the Moon Be Still as Bright” represented a direct rejoinder to Krutch’s summary of the modern temper that philosophers since Kierkegaard and Nietzsche had struggled to define. Krutch did not engage these philosophers but attempted instead a very personalized examination that Bradbury’s Muse found irresistible.  The Modern Temper was written in the 1920s and reflected Krutch’s doubts that mankind could avoid nihilistic destruction by finding new myths to live by. Krutch’s articulation of a “tragic fallacy” in modern man—that our appreciation of the great life-affirming tragedies of past literary ages disguises our inability to produce such works about our own age—provided the immediate basis for Bradbury’s next creative move: the archaeologist Spender finds that the Martians had, after their own crisis of values, eventually restored belief in art and the other necessary illusions that give meaning to life within a seemingly indifferent universe. Krutch’s concern with man’s increasing detachment from the animal is echoed in Spender’s revelations to Captain Wilder: “The animal does not question life.… Man had become too much man and not enough animal on Mars, too, one day. And man realized that in order to survive they would have to forgo asking that one question any longer: Why live ?” [emphasis Bradbury’s]. Through Spender and other character masks of the period, Bradbury was beginning to pinpoint his own focus for realism: the fundamental truths that help us live meaningfully rather than die in despair.  Krutch’s concern for the ecological implications of consumerism reinforced earlier Bradbury readings, including Lewis Mumford’s The Condition of Man and Philip Wylie’s indictment of consumerism in certain chapters of Generation of Vipers. Bradbury was, in fact, developing a strong distaste for the new explosion of consumer culture and commercialism that seemed only one degree of absurdity away from the hot-dog stand on Mars at the center of his story “The Off-Season,” which he also credits Krutch with inspiring. Both of these tales appeared in Thrilling Wonder Stories , and Bradbury’s resurgence in the pages of this venerable pulp was aided by a shift in the magazine’s editorial vision. As Mike Ashley observes, Thrilling Wonder adapted Astounding’s evolving approach and added writers “with a sense of wonder at a more human level” while continuing to solicit science fantasy and space opera. Sam Merwin, who had replaced Oscar Friend as editor in late 1944, was largely responsible for TWS ’s return to prominence by deemphasizing the juvenile elements of both format and contents, a strategy that paralleled Bradbury’s own maturing vision as a science fiction writer. 1951-01-07 Dimension X - Mars Is Heaven! Adapted by Ernest Kinoy, directed by Edward King and produced by Van Woodward. The first spaceship from Earth lands on Mars in 1987. The crew has more than one surprise in store for them! 1951 saw interest in adapting Bradbury’s Martian stories growing beyond radio. Bradbury’s breakthrough into television came with the July 23, 1951 broadcast of “Zero Hour” on NBC’s Lights Out and Hollywood came calling at the beginning of the year when producer Robert L. Lippert Sr. made an offer to film “Mars Is Heaven!” Lippert, originally a West Coast theater chain owner, had become a B-film producer known for his ability to turn out films on tight budgets and short shooting schedules. He had produced the somber science fiction film Rocketship X-M , which included a very dark and pessimistic view of first contact with a dying Martian civilization. In spite of its haunting Martian landscape, Bradbury had not liked Rocketship X-M at all. But more importantly, Lippert had already shown Bradbury his true colors with the way he treated Bradbury’s good friend Ray Harryhausen during a 1950 special effects audition for Lost Continent. Bradbury expected Arthur Conan Doyle’s The Lost World , but this was an improbable screen story of atomic rockets, dinosaurs, and a mysterious island. Bradbury assisted Harryhausen as he showcased his dinosaur footage, but both men were appalled by Lippert’s lack of courtesy and distance during the screening—he never shook hands or even approached them and only spoke to give terse commands. In spite of Harryhausen’s recent credit as an animation assistant on Mighty Joe Young , Lippert promptly rejected Harryhausen’s approach and took the less expensive option of attaching fins to live lizards. A decade later, Bradbury took revenge with “The Prehistoric Producer” (subsequently titled “Tyrannosaurus Rex”), a story that satirically turned the tables and gave Harryhausen the last laugh. 1951-07-19 Dimension X - Dwellers In Silence Adapted by George Lefferts. Twenty years after mankind abandons the Earth, a spaceship from Mars lands. 1951-07-25 Escape - The Earthman Adapted by Walter Newman. Produced & directed by Norman Macdonnell. A fine sci-fi story about the strange reception accorded the first Earthmen on Mars. A different story from "Mars is Heaven." 1951-08-09 Dimension X - The Veldt Adapted by Ernest Kinoy, directed by Fred Weihe. The kids' playroom is nothing to fool around about! Bradbury would often start with a single-page burst of creativity triggered by a word association exercise. According to an early draft opening for “The World the Children Made,” c. 1949, all the basic plot dynamics unfolded from the phrase “a nursery:” the oppositional tension between the parents’ world and the children’s world, with a Bradbury twist of patricide. Many such openings would go no further, but Bradbury grew this story into his first Saturday Evening Post appearance and, as “The Veldt,” an enduring feature of The Illustrated Man . 1951-08-30 Dimension X - Marionettes, Inc Adapted by George Lefferts, directed by Fred Weihe. A man buys a humanoid in his own image to take his place with his wife while he's out having fun. The humanoid, however, has a few ideas of his own! 1951-09-15 Dimension X - Kaleidoscope Adapted by George Lefferts, directed by Fred Weihe. A story about a space ship disaster that spews the crew out into space. Around the time of this radio adaptation of “Kaleidoscope,” Bradbury discovered an unauthorized adaptation of sorts in the pages of EC comics. William M. Gaines, who was rapidly turning EC Comics into a first-tier syndicate with four lines of horror and science fiction magazines, had apparently been impressed with the potential of Bradbury’s stories; as Jerry Weist has observed, Gaines and his gifted artist-writer Al Feldstein studied all the pulps and no doubt found value in Bradbury’s multiple-genre legacy. By the spring of 1952, Gaines and Feldstein had published horror strip stories that loosely resembled “The Handler” and “The Man Upstairs,” as well as a closer horror-strip adaptation of “The Emissary” and a science fiction piece that combined Bradbury’s “Kaleidoscope” and “The Rocket Man.” On April 19th, Bradbury wrote a masterful letter complimenting them on their work, noting that he looked forward to receiving their $50.00 payment for the combined science fiction stories, and suggesting that they consider the full range of stories and story-chapters in his three books. The subtext was well received at the EC offices. By focusing only on the two stories that were obvious lifts, and approving of the quality of the EC strips by inviting a formal collaboration, Bradbury made it easy for Gaines and Feldstein to agree to terms. Although they never acknowledged Bradbury’s influence on their earlier storyboards, they began a two-year, twenty-five–story series of Bradbury adaptations in the pages of their various comic lines. 1952-01-04 NBC Short Story - The Rocket Adapted by Ernest Kinoy, produced by Don Diamond and directed by Andrew C. Love. While Bradbury’s breakthrough into television came with Lights Out ’s broadcast of “Zero Hour” on NBC, CBS Television showed the strongest interest in Bradbury’s work. Three science fiction adaptations by other writers aired on various CBS TV programs during the winter of 1951–52, culminating in Sidney Lumet’s direction of “The Rocket” for CBS Television Workshop . Producer John Haggott asked for five more Bradbury science fiction stories to adapt in-house for the 1952 season of Out There . He was particularly interested in purchasing “The Fireman” (an early version of Fahrenheit 451) and two Martian Chronicles stories, “The Earth Men” and “The Long Years.” 1953-09-11 ABC Radio Workshop (aka Think) - Mars Is Heaven! This is Morton Fine & David Friedkin’s script, originally written for Escape , but with the live radio framing story removed, which takes the story back to being closer to the original text. Produced by John Ippolito and Steve Markham. Starring Bill Hudson, Francis Urey, Monty Himmelbaum, Mary Dean Moss, Marian Richman, Jo Ellen Chambers, Curt Converse and Roy Schumann.   1953-10-04 Escape - Zero Hour Adapted, produced and directed by Antony Ellis. Starring Paula Winslowe, William Johnstone, Mary McGovern and Eve McVeagh. The classic story about the game of "Invasion" and the visit of "Drill." Originally titled in manuscript as “The Children’s Hour.” 1955-03-01 Suspense - The Screaming Woman Adapted by Silvia Richards, produced and directed by Antony Ellis. A couple of kids hear a screaming woman, who is buried alive! 1955-04-05 Suspense - Zero Hour Adapted, produced and directed by Antony Ellis. 1955-05-08 X Minus One - Mars is Heaven! Adapted by Ernest Kinoy, produced by William Welch and directed by Fred Weihe 1955-06-14 Suspense - The Whole Town's Sleeping Adapted, produced and directed by Antony Ellis from Ray Bradbury's short story "The Ravine.” The Lonely One is roaming the night, strangling women out after dark. “The Whole Town’s Sleeping” first reached print as a Bradbury terror in, of all places, the September 1950 issue of McCall’s . It had evolved from Bradbury’s original high-school mood piece about the ravine back home in his Waukegan neighborhood, and by the mid-1940s the deadly potential of the ravine had become manifest in the character of the Lonely One, a serial killer first described in the child narrative of “The Night” and brought fully into play as Lavinia’s silent and unseen assailant in “The Whole Town’s Sleeping”; the ravine is the natural shortcut home from her evening at the cinema, but it is also where the Lonely One strangles his female victims. She braves the ravine, falling deeper into a state of terror as she runs home, oblivious to the fact that the Lonely One is not behind her in the ravine, but in her house, waiting for her return. In time, “The Whole Town’s Sleeping” became the most suspenseful chapter of Dandelion Wine . If “Mars Is Heaven!” was becoming his hallmark science fiction story, “The Whole Town’s Sleeping” slowly began to carry that status among his tales of terror. The opening small talk among Lavinia’s girlfriends, slowly gives way to the internalized terrors of her own mind, presented in the third person as her cavalier attitudes give way to the darker side of her own imagination.  In the early 1950s Bradbury carried the effect over into “At Midnight, in the Month of June,” an overlapping sequel that tells the story and its aftermath from the deeply disturbed consciousness of the murderer himself. This sequel is, in effect, one long sustained reflective reverie; only a few words pass between the murderer and the counterman of the all-night diner where he sits, sipping milk, reflecting on his latest victim. Although Bradbury never merged these two stories into a larger work, they nonetheless represent a sustained success with dark, naturalistic forms of realism that he would rarely attempt again. For the most part, his forays into Modernism would be thematic rather than formal, focusing on antimaterialist yearnings for lost values, his evolving and complicated mythos of loss and triumph in the ever-expanding space frontier, and his always ambiguous encounters with death. He would try these themes out across a wide spectrum of genres with little regard for established method, sometimes referring to himself as a magical realist, but always preferring the transformative vision of the Romantic tradition to the harsh, maskless face of raw realism. 1955-07-12 Suspense - Kaleidoscope Adapted, produced and directed by Antony Ellis. Starring William Conrad, John Dehner and Parley Baer. After a spaceship explodes, the surviving crew members have a last conversation as they drift to their deaths. A well-done version of a sci-fi classic.  1955-08-04 X Minus One - The Veldt Adapted by Ernest Kinoy, produced by William Welch and directed by Daniel Sutter. In a totally automatic house, there's a totally automatic nursery, with a pack of real lions!  1955-09-22 X Minus One - And the Moon Be Still as Bright Adapted by Ernest Kinoy, produced by William Welch and directed by Daniel Sutter. Starring Clarke Gordon, John Larkin, Lawrence Kerr, Nelson Olmsted, Richard Hamilton, Stan Early. Earthmen land on Mars and start to make a slum out of it. 1955-11-10 X Minus One - Dwellers in the Silence Adapted by George Lefferts, produced by William Welch and directed by Daniel Sutter. Starring Anne Seymour, Karl Weber, Ted Osborne, Richard Hamilton, Edwin Jerome and Stan Early. Twenty years after mankind abandoned the Earth, a spaceship from Mars lands. 1955-11-23 X Minus One - There Will Come Soft Rains -- Zero Hour Adapted by George Lefferts from Ray Bradbury's works, Directed by Daniel Sutter; Announcer Fred Collins 1955-12-14 X-Minus One - To the Future Adapted by Ernest Kinoy, produced by William Welch and directed by Daniel Sutter. Starring  Alexander Scourby, Mercer McLeod, Joe DeSantis, Guy Sorel, Al Jazzbeaux Collins and Stan Early. A trip two hundred years into the past...to 1955! 1955-12-21 X-Minus One - Marionettes, Inc. Adapted by George Lefferts, produced by William Welch and directed by Daniel Sutter. Starring Richard Hamilton, Theo Goet. A story set in the future, 1990. A man buys a humanoid in his own image to take his place with his wife while he's out having fun. The humanoid however, has some ideas of his own. 1956-02-17 CBS Radio Workshop - Season of Disbelief -- Hail and Farewell Adapted and directed by Antony Ellis, produced by William Froug, music by Jerry Goldsmith with introductions by Bradbury himself. Two unusual and provocative character studies – an elderly woman reflects on life and a young boy searches for a new family.  1956-12-05 X-Minus One - There Will Come Soft Rains - Zero Hour Adapted by George Lefferts, produced by William Welch and directed by Edward King. 1958-05-18 Suspense - Zero Hour Adapted by Antony Ellis, produced and directed by William N. Robson. Starring Evelyn Rudie, Lillian Buyeff, Ellen Morgan, Karl Swenson and Vic Perrin. 1958-08-31 Suspense - The Whole Town's Sleeping  Adapted by Antony Ellis, produced and directed by William N. Robson. The famous story about the young woman walking across a dark ravine at night...with a killer on the loose.  1960-01-03 Suspense - Zero Hour Adapted by Antony Ellis, produced & directed by Paul Roberts, starring Joseph Myers and Ginger Jones. 1968-05-10 SF68 - A Sound of Thunder Adapted and produced by Michael McCabe for South Africa’s Springbok Radio. In his own fiction, the short prose poems, or penseés, embedded in some of his best stories of the period come closest to capturing his sense of life and death. He wrote these intuitively, and for years he didn’t know what he was doing—he didn’t even know the term penseé, and he didn’t read the form’s master, Saint-John Perse, until years later. But from the mid-1940s through the early 1950s, his own fiction was flavored with occasional prose poems, prompted only by what he would later define as an “ability to describe sensually, with the eye, with the ear, with the tongue, with the nose.”2 Four of the best of these embedded passages reached print between 1951 and 1953, although most were written a year or two earlier. They include “A Scent of Sarsaparilla,” where the attic smells and images of long-ago days transport a lonely man back through time for a second chance at life, and “A Sound of Thunder,” with its tyrannosaurus rex charging toward the time travelers like a samurai warrior, the armored scales gleaming like golden coins, the coins sheltering prehistoric fleas and lice. Late in life, Bradbury would come to regard Fireman Montag’s first ominous encounter with the Mechanical Hound, a scene created during his final phase of revisions toward Fahrenheit 451, as a prose poem.3 But the self-contained passage he has always most closely identified with this literary tradition is the old light-keeper’s fable from “The Fog Horn” 1969-01-10 Beyond Midnight - The No-Name Baby Adapted and produced by Michael McCabe for South Africa’s Springbok Radio. Based on Bradbury’s short story “The Small Assassin.” Alice is convinced that her newborn baby is trying to kill her: the baby lies awake all day long, staring at her and plotting against her, and at night he cries constantly, depriving her of sleep and rest. Day after day this goes on. Sometimes Alice can hear him moving about the house, but when she looks in on him, he is always in his crib staring... staring... staring. It's enough to drive anyone mad. 1969-02-10 Theatre 10:30 - The Pedestrian Adapted by James Bannerman. Two guys go for an evening walk in this dystopian sci-fi classic. Their true situation is slowly revealed as they reflect along the way… until they must hide from the police. Bradbury’s novella “The Pedestrian” was written in 1951 and Jonathan R. Eller points to several i nspirations for the story. David H. Keller’s 1928 pulp story “The Revolt of the Pedestrians” is a dark psychological study of technology-driven genocide that had a big impact on Brabury - inspiring his 1938 high-school editorial about the hazards of being a pedestrian in an increasingly mechanized landscape. But real-world experiences provided the final creative spark. In 1940, Bradbury was questioned in Pershing Square by police during a late-night walk with his friend Henry Hasse, and a similar incident with another friend occurred along Wilshire Boulevard sometime in 1949. Through these experiences he had come to see the pedestrian as a threshold or indicator species among urban dwellers—if the rights of the pedestrian were threatened, this would represent an early indicator that basic freedoms would soon be at risk. He wrote “The Pedestrian” while the emotion of his latest run-in with the police was fresh in his mind, and it eventually became the first fiction piece purchased by Max Ascoli for The Reporter , a nice-looking slick with excellent artwork by Reg Massie. “The Pedestrian” was featured in the August 7, 1951, issue. Today, it is probably most famous for being the early seed that would become Bradbury’s landmark novel Fahrenheit 451 .  1969-02-21 Beyond Midnight - Insect Man Adapted and produced by Michael McCabe for South Africa’s Springbok Radio. Based on Bradbury’s short story “The Watchers,” originally published in Weird Tales , May 1945 (not to be confused with his 1950 Martian Chronicles story by the same name). The story of a captain of the kitchenware industry who believes that insects are planted bugs who report back to some mysterious governing force.  1971-03-04 CBC Stage - Fahrenheit 451 Adapted by Otto Lowy and produced by CBC Radio in Vancouver, as a part of the long-running Stage program, the drama is light on sound effects and high on fidelity to the original text. In fact, the production is an amazingly faithful adaptation considering it’s only an hour long. Starring Neil Dainard, Alan Scarfe, Linda Sorenson and Sharon Kurt. Sound by Lars Eastholm, Technical by Bob Spence and produced by Don Mowat. 1971-04 CBC The Summer Raptures of Ray Bradbury An interview with Ray Bradbury broken up with three short dramatizations of his stories. Bradbury discusses his process, his influences,  “The Small Assassin” comparisons to Rosemary’s Baby and living in Los Angeles. Stories that are dramatized: “The Town Where No One Got Off,” “The Crowd,” and “Night Call, Collect.” 1973-11-19 CBC Playhouse - Bradbury Times Five: The Lonely One Adapted by Otto Lowy. Directed by Don Mowatt. Starring Dorothy Davies, Gay Scrivener , Roma Hearn and David Glyn-Jones. From Vancouver. 1973-12-03 CBC Playhouse - Bradbury Times Five: The Day It Rained Forever Adapted and directed by Don Mowatt. Starring Dorothy Davies, Walter Marsh and Bill Buckingham. From Vancouver.  1973-12-10 CBC Playhouse - Bradbury Times Five: I Sing the Body Electric Adapted by Otto Lowy. Directed by Don Mowatt. Starring Catherine Johnson, Neil Dainard , Marti Maraden and David Stein. From Vancouver. 1974 Ray Bradbury Theater - Forever and the Earth A pair of rare broadcasts from 1974 based on Ray Bradbury stories, dramatized by the author himself and directed by the great Norman Corwin. This episode stars Monte Markham & William Schallert in a story about a failed author/independently wealthy eccentric who gets some scientists to make time travel work so he can bring Thomas Wolfe forward in time to write stories about space and space travel, since no contemporary writers seem to manage it. 1974 Ray Bradbury Theater - The Great Conflagration Up At The Place Bradbury’s adaptation of his own story “The Terrible Conflagration Up At The Place.” William Schallert, Garry Walberg and Ben Wright star in the story about a band of rebels who plot to overthrow the local lordship and express their own freedom by burning down his stately home. 1974-10-20 Tales of Time and Space - Zero Hour This short-lived science fiction series from the mid-1970s was hosted by Drusilla Campbell, who read classic short stories from the great authors of science fiction. Otherwise, not much is known about the series. 1975-10-05 Crossroads of Music - Steve Markam with Ray Bradbury, Norman Corwin & Frank Bresee on KFAC Los Angeles An after-dinner conversation about radio history. 1977 The Illustrated Man - Independent Production An independent production produced and directed by Michael McDonough and Brad Arrington featuring stereo adaptations of “The Fox in the Forest” and “Kaleidoscope.” Fans of this particular broadcast include Norman Corwin and Ray Bradbury himself. Featuring the music of Bernard Hermann. 1984-10-31 Ray Bradbury's The October Country (UNICEF Halloween Special) Directed by John Clark, based on Ray Bradbury’s book The October Country , adapted for radio by Rick Libert, Deborah Hansen, Jack Nierob, Sharon Benoit, and John Clark. It stars Robert Brown, Barrie Ingham, June Lockhart, Lynn Redgrave, Casey Kasem, Jean Kasem, Gary Owens ( Rowan & Martin’s Laugh-In ), Danny Cooksey ( Salute Your Shorts, T2 ), Frank Welker ( Scooby-Doo ) and announcer Marvin Miller. Produced by Jeff Sudikoff, Johnny Biggs and Matt Tombers in coordination with the United States Committee for UNICEF. In the spring of 1947, Bradbury sent a copy of his debut book, Dark Carnival , to the production staff at Ealing Studios in London. Having seen the British film Dead of Night , Ealing’s only venture into the horror genre, Bradbury came out of the theater convinced that the writers and directors at Ealing who had woven five stories into a sustained and sophisticated horror film for Dead of Night could do the same thing for Dark Carnival . Bradbury never heard back from them. However, he learned that Ivan Foxwell, who had connections at Ealing, was in Hollywood, and he arranged to meet him during July 1947. Foxwell was impressed with Bradbury’s collection, and after returning to London he circulated Dark Carnival among British filmmakers for at least a year. He confessed to Bradbury that the austere postwar conditions in the British Isles had set the critics as well as the major film distributors against dark subjects, and the lesser distributors followed suit in discouraging such productions. While Dark Carnival never made it to the big screen as an anthology film, in a way, this quirky Halloween radio broadcast would achieve something similar with The October Country, Bradbury’s 1955 collection that included 15 of Carnival ’s 27 stories. Broadcast live from The Directors Guild of America in Hollywood, this Bradbury anthology features adaptations of three of his October stories: "The Emissary" "There Was an Old Woman" and "The Wonderful Death of Dudley Stone.” It also features a brief introduction by Bradbury himself at the top of the show. This production was actually part of a Halloween tradition that started in 1981 with a group of actors performing original radio thrillers live over NBC affiliates throughout the country on Halloween night, with proceeds going to the United Nations International Children’s Fund (UNICEF).  1984-11-02 Vanishing Point - The Playground Adapted by Martin Lager. The decision to enroll his son in a new play center forces a man to dig back into the pain of his own childhood. If only there were a way to spare his son the same trauma…  1989 (circa) Sci-fi Radio - Frost and Fire A series of 26 half-hour shows which aired on NPR Playhouse , Sci-Fi Radio started in 1989 and featured dramatization of science fiction stories from authors like Philip K. Dick, Ursula K. LeGuin and Arthur C. Clarke. 1992-03-18 Studs Terkel Interview with Bradbury Bradbury discusses his books with one of the great journalists on WFMT Chicago. 1992 Radio Wolinsky - Ray Bradbury interview Richard Wolinsky and Richard A. Lupoff interview Bradbury at his home in Los Angeles for KPFA. 2000-05-16 NPR’s 2000x - Pillar of Fire 2000X was a dramatic anthology series released by National Public Radio and produced by Yuri Rasovsky’s Hollywood Theater of the Ear . There were 49 plays of various lengths in 26 one-hour programs broadcast weekly and later released on the internet. Plays were adaptations of futuristic stories, novels and plays by noted authors. Producer/director Yuri Rasovsky and host/consultant Harlan Ellison won the 2001 Bradbury Award from the Science Fiction Writers of America for their work on this program. This episode stars Allan Miller in an adaptation of Bradbury’s story about a corpse that comes alive to punish the future for its lack of respect for the dead.  2010-08-05 Sonic Summerstock Playhouse - Zero Hour Remake of the Antony Ellis’ adaptation. 2010 Radio Classics - Happy 90th Birthday Ray Bradbury  To celebrate Bradbury’s 90th birthday, Jerry Haendiges’ NPR show presents an archival interview with Ray Bradbury from 1976as well an archival interview from 1977 with Michael McDonough and Brad Arrington, producers of a beloved . 2011-11-13 SmorgShow Theater - Zero Hour Remake of the Antony Ellis’ adaptation, originally performed on Escape and Suspense . Dave Jackson narrates this science fiction installment of SmorgShow Theater . 2012-06-15 KPFA From the Vault  Two Ray Bradbury Speeches from 1964 and 1973. 2014-08-30 SmorgShow Theater - The Ravine Remake of the Antony Ellis’ adaptation of The Whole Town's Sleeping. 2015 Ylla - February 1999 (Jiaant Entertainment production) Sound design by Lena Wilson and Andrew Diehl of Michigan Technological University in Audio Creative Lab. 2016-10-31 Night Terrors Podcast - The Whole Town's Sleeping Remake of the Antony Ellis’ adaptation.

This recording is part of the Old Time Radio collection.


1946-05-17 Killer, Come Back to Me! 29:33
1947-01-02 The Meadow 29:36
1947-08-20 The Night 14:56
1947-11-13 Riabouchinska 29:19
1948-07-15 Summer Night 29:21
1948-11-25 The Screaming Woman 29:46
1949-10-16 Duet 29:28
1949-10-30 The Wind 29:06
1950-05-27 To the Future 29:50
1950-06-02 Mars Is Heaven! 29:30
1950-06-17 There Will Come Soft Rain | Zero Hour 29:56
1950-07-07 Mars is Heaven! 29:17
1950-08-18 The Martian Chronicles 29:37
1950-09-21 The Crowd 29:42
1950-09-29 And The Moon Be Still as Bright 29:40
1951-01-07 Mars Is Heaven! 25:20
1951-07-19 Dwellers In Silence 29:39
1951-07-25 The Earthman 29:31
1951-08-09 The Veldt 30:11
1951-08-30 Marionettes, Inc. 28:02
1951-09-15 Kaleidoscope 29:32
1952-01-04 The Rocket 29:23
1953-09-11 Mars is Heaven! 29:25
1953-10-04 Zero Hour 22:47
1955-03-01 The Screaming Woman 24:04
1955-04-05 Zero Hour 24:19
1955-05-08 Mars is Heaven! 26:42
1955-06-14 The Whole Town's Sleeping 24:50
1955-07-12 Kaleidoscope 23:42
1955-08-04 The Veldt 23:54
1955-09-22 And the Moon Be Still as Bright 24:05
1955-11-10 Dwellers in the Silence 23:55
1955-11-23 There Will Come Soft Rains | Zero Hour 28:59
1955-12-14 To the Future 28:51
1955-12-21 Marionettes, Inc 29:07
1956-02-17 Season of Disbelief | Hail and Farewell 29:18
1956-12-05 There Wil Come Soft Rains | Zero Hour 28:59
1958-05-18 Zero Hour 24:52
1958-08-31 The Whole Town's Sleeping 24:52
1960-01-03 Zero Hour 25:42
1968-05-10 A Sound of Thunder 28:13
1969-01-10 The No-Name Baby (aka The Small Assassin) 24:13
1969-02-10 The Pedestrian 25:45
1969-02-21 Insect Man (aka The Watchers; Insects) 27:13
1971-03-04 Fahrenheit 451 58:21
1971-04-xx CBC The Summer Raptures of Ray Bradbury 1:33:43
1973-11-19 The Lonely One 30:03
1973-12-03 The Day It Rained Forever 29:13
1973-12-10 I Sing the Body Electric 28:37
1974-10-20 Zero Hour 24:21
1974-xx-xx Forever and the Earth 29:36
1974-xx-xx The Great Conflagration Up At The Place 29:19
1975-10-05 Steve Markam with Ray Bradbury, Norman Corwin & Frank Bresee on KFAC… 2:46:46
1977-10-27 The Illustrated Man 54:31
197x-xx-xx Kaleidoscope 31:01
197x-xx-xx The Fog Horn 30:10
197x-xx-xx The Star by Arthur C Clarke and The Gift by Ray Bradbury 30:25
197x-xx-xx The Veldt 30:56
1984-10-30 Ray Bradbury's The October Country 1:23:31
1984-11-02 The Playground 27:19
1989-xx-xx Frost and Fire 53:50
1992-03-18 Studs Terkel Interview with Bradbury on WFMT Chicago 43:39
1992-xx-xx KPFA Bradbury interview with Richard Wolinsky and Richard A Lupoff 38:04
2000-xx-xx Pillar of Fire 48:22
2010-08-05 Zero Hour 29:20
2010-xx-xx NPR Interview with Ray Bradbury, Michael McDonough and Brad Arringto… 1:59:45
2011-11-13 Zero Hour 24:13
2012-06-15 Two Ray Bradbury Speeches from 1964 and 1973 58:44
2014-08-30 The Ravine (aka The Whole Town's Sleeping) 24:19
2015-xx-xx Ylla - February 1999 (Jiaant Entertainment production) 25:19
2016-10-31 The Whole Town's Sleeping 26:51


I'm Enraptured!

(5 stars)

Thank you so much for "The Summer Raptures of Ray Bradbury." I had it on a reel to reel tape almost 50 years ago, but lost it to the travails of time. This is pure magic to finally hear this wonderful CBC broadcast again, and I have downloaded it in flac format. Thank you, dear uploader! What a wondrous broadcast! Jimmy Lee in Chicago


(4 stars)

I was so very glad to find this and many thanks to you for your meticulous and diligent work. I decided to upload these in mp3 format to my phone so I could take it with me on vacation. I had no troubles at all until I got to one particular file: 1975-10-05 Steve Markam with Ray Bradbury, Norman Corwin & Frank Bresee on KFAC Los Angele. I tried a few different things like changing the name but it just wouldn’t upload. So I thought I’d give you a heads up. Hope this is helpful. Cheers!

A fine collection form a fabulous writer

(4 stars)

Thank you for this fine collection of stories. So often producers just use the "usual five" of Bradbury's stories so to have this library of published and even unpublished stories is exciting.

Thanks for the feedback

(5 stars)

Bobby P -- thanks, I've made both those corrections. Jimmy Lee -- thrilled you could reconnect with the Raptures broadcast! It's a special program.

Date Correction

(0 stars)

1956-12-21 Marionettes, Inc is actually 1956-12-05 There Will Come Soft Rains/Zero Hour. 1984-10-30 Ray Bradbury's The October Country was actually broadcast on 1984-10-31, 10:00 EST.

amazing collection

(4.5 stars)

Many thanks to those who put this together.

Truly disgusting

(5 stars)

This excellent well produced collection of Ray Bradbury's radio works is oppressing Amazon Prime. Instead of getting these great works for free, I could have spent 30 usd from Amazon Prime and contributed to Diversity Equity and Inclusion. Black lives are being oppressed whenever cheapskates get works from sources that do not contribute to the globalist agenda of diversity, equity and inclusion. I must point out that Ray Bradbury is now considered problematic because he was an old white male, who was only appreciated due to systemic raycysm that prevented more gifted BIPOC authors being acknowledged by the old white liberal intellectuals of the time