Saturday Night Theatre
This recording is part of the Old Time Radio collection.
update radio echoes over 900!
BBC - Still the Home of Radio Drama
Play No.8, Alan Bennett's "Forty Years On" was first broadcast by the BBC on 11th August 1973; a time when most other English-speaking radio broadcasters had submitted to TV and stopped transmitting such things as drama, live variety, etc. What a cast! Sir John Gielgud, Alan Bennett, Dorothy Reynolds, Nora Nicholson and Paul Eddington. Only the BBC could assemble such noted actors for a radio production! Thankfully, even today (2017) the BBC still manages to assemble great casts for their radio plays. Even when the BBC produces a radio version of a TV play or comedy, one finds that virtually all of the original casts are happy to contribute to the radio production. Long may this continue. To return to the drama itself: I have to say that it's not the best play I've ever heard, and certainly not the best thing to have come from Alan Bennett's pen. Although there's some original material here, I'm surprised that Bennett borrowed so much from other literary sources!
Quite the treasure trove
Edgar Wallace, HE Bates, John Buchan, Hammond Innes, Bill Knox, Graham Greene, Alan Bennett, Daphne du Maurier, James Follett-- even Henry Cecil, no less! Our unknown benefactor had good taste in his home recording during the 1970s. One can only hope there's more where this came from but, in any event, I for one am very grateful to have these bits of popular culture from a gentler and more leisurely time. (And wouldn't people back in the 70s have been startled by THAT description....) PS Thanks too to the previous reviewer for fleshing out the listings.
Good and Bad
Out of Stone
Damn lazy of the uploader not to name/date the files - if radio echoes and OTRR can name and date nearly a thousand then doing so for fifty shouldn't present much hardship. And all files from the seventies. One should avoid radio echoes, as files are encoded in inferior audio quality/bit-rate. All Saturday Night Theatre episodes in quality bit-rate are available at https://www.otrr.org/OTRRLibrary/ (search programme by letter > S > Saturday Night Theatre)
I grew up in the 70s and 80s listening to BBC radio drama, and Saturday Night Theatre was the pinnacle of radio drama. Hardly missed it. There are some excellent plays here, and there are hundreds more availabe online if you look for them. I managed to get about 600 plays in this series abotu 10 years ago, aminly from the old Usenet. I wish I could find more! Do enjoy these plays!
Saturday night theatre available if you search
Yes,unfortunately radio echoes is down because it was hacked. It might return sometime in the future. Maybe. But if you search well, there are at least two other sites that I found in addition to those already mentioned that have many of the Saturday night theatre programs available for listening.
Best Radio Series
I have listened to thousands of hours and hours of most of the OTR radio shows on archive.org and this is the the very best. The stories-fiction, non-fiction are superb and marvelously produced. I have no one favorite because they are all soooooo good. ENJOY!!!!!
Saturday Night Theatre
I too was a BBC radio drama addict in my youth and greatly regretted the demise of SNT and similar full length (1.5hour) plays. I have just discovered this wonderful archive and shall enjoy reliving part of my youth in my dotage! Great stuff!