10 Years of Audio Horror Madness!

It should be said, horror is one of those special treats that is our favorite to dish up, and after ten years – ten! an eternity on the internet – we’re reminiscing on the dark times we’ve all had together.

2006 – The Blind Man’s Confession

blind-mans-confessionArguably, the show that launched Radio Drama Revival was creator Fred Greenhalgh’s production “The Blind Man’s Confession.” Adapted from the original short story (published in Blue Murder Magazine) which Fred workshopped at a ‘live storytelling’ class in college (hmmm what would this sound like with sound effects and music added?) the incredibly dark story starts with a teen out joyriding on a twisted country road in rural Maine and unfurls through a grim set of events after that car careens off the road. A cautionary tale that being flung from a fast-moving car might not be the worst that could happen to you.

When Fred originally launched the story it was too dark to be played on over-the-air radio and he thought – gosh! there must be somewhere else to release it – and that got his wheels churning (ha ha) about the internet. So set in motion a set of events that would lead to Radio Drama Revival’s creation.

Listen: The Blind Man’s Confession

2007 – Dark Passenger

dark-passenger2007 was a big year! We founded this show and Fred started building his own house. Somewhere in there, he had time to get schooling from NATF and Roger Gregg about field recording, and decided to do his first field-recorded play, the grim number “Dark Passenger.”

Fred’s twisted childhood shows itself again, with a story set in a haunted house inspired by Fred’s own boyhood home in Downeast Maine, and a cameo appearance of the player piano from hell.

Listen: Dark Passenger

Also, our first Radio Drama Revival official Halloween special: Halloween special 2007

A special shout out to Scott Hickey who let us air “God of the Razor” as one of our very first episodes of Radio Drama Revival.

2008 – One hell of a Halloween special!

Our second incarnation of the Halloween Horror Series featured the Horrorscopes show “The Horror of Walker Point” (produced by Bill Dufris, to be Fred’s great co-collaborator in the years ahead) and a sinister tale of a computer gone mad, “Marienette 1.1” by Roger Gregg.

2008 halloween radio drama special

2009 – Live Halloween Show!

We got it into our head that merely re-playing existing radio plays was not good enough… we wanted to do it in a big way! So FinalRune Productions did a show on Radio Drama Revival that was never to be repeated: live actors, live music, live sound effects, in front of a live audience aaaaannnddd!!! played live over-the-air. If you’ve ever attempted a live show that made all this tech work, and also worked as a dark good spooky show, you know how tough it is!

Featuring stories by Roger Gregg, Fred Greenhalgh, Mark LaFlamme, and Kevin Anderson.

Live Halloween radio show 2009

Also! This was the year that We’re Alive was born (or, rose from the dead?). Perhaps modern audio storytelling should be told as BWA, and AWA.

2010 – The Cleansed Pilot

Remember that Bill Dufris guy? (He did an awesome job with this HP Lovecraft piece) – so, Fred and hims get to talking…. Hey, remember how Stephen King in Danse Macabre talks about staging a radio play of “War of the Worlds” but set in Bangor, Maine? What if WE did that?!

Fred – who very much did not want to create ‘yet another War of the Worlds knock-off’ decided to take it in his own direction, and turned the premise into the launching page of what would succumb the better page of his next four years – The Cleansed.

This also was our first “Transcontinental Terror” radio show – featuring stories from Willamette Radio Workshop and Icebox Radio Theatre.

2011 – Intensive Care

intensive-care-smHow the internet works! We won an award (Silver Mark Time for “The Cleansed”) and while receiving the award at CONvergence in Minneapolis, met these awesome folks at Aural Stage Studios (who were there celebrating their win for the show 1918).

Long story short, Aural Stage producer Matthew Boudreau and Fred Greenhalgh have a conversation sort of like this:

Matt: “Hey, we should do a Halloween show.”
Fred: “We should!”
Matt: “How about I drive to Maine with a bunch of actors & a director in my car and you find us a place to record?”
Fred: “Hmmm how about some old creaky mills where there are ghosts and sh*$t?”
Matt: “Sounds good! Will there be people moving into the office across the hall making a ton of noise while we’re trying to record?”
Fred: “Undoubtedly.”
Matt: “Packing the car as we speak.”

Listen: Intensive Care

So began Matthew J Boudreau and Fred Greenhalgh’s production life together, and this whole crazy notion of recording/producing a horror show within a couple weeks of Halloween. Their mad experiment continues to inspire, with 2016 seeing international entries as part of 11th Hour Audio Productions.

For the record, Intensive Care then won the GOLD Ogle Award, prompting another trip to Minneapolis where Matthew and Fred got to drink tons of whisky together. Hence the incident with the car keys.

2012 – Epic 6-part Transcontinental Terror Audio Horror Series

This year Radio Drama Revival hosted six (!!!) parts of the international horror train series on the show.

Listen: Transcontinental Terror Audio Horror Series 2012

2013 – Even more Halloween Horror

Transcontinental Terror had about ran out of fuel, but we kept up our typical Halloween horror fare. Our favorite from this year was “The Ram King” by Tales from Beyond the Pale.

2014 – Journey With Strange Bedfellows (with Forest Rose Productions)

Producer Fred went mostly off-the-grid (the reason, as would be uncovered, was to record the epic 13.5 hour audio horror saga Locke & Key for Audible). Somewhere in here though the steampunky horror classics “A Journey with Strange Bedfellows” came out, a production of FinalRune and Forest Rose Productions – another Ogle finalist!

Listen: A Journey with Strange Bedfellows

2015 – Locke & Key for Audible & Some Low Doves

FinalRune’s big moment in 2015 was to finally see the launch of Locke & Key (by Joe Hill and Gabriel Rodriguez), produced with their friends at AudioComics, for Audible Studios. (though due to rights we were unable to play it!)

Here on Radio Drama Revival we got to celebrate #WorldAudioDramaDay – we’re not exactly sure who started it, but we’d like to think some amount of the festivals we’ve run in the past, combined with the historic occasion of Orson Welle’s “War of the Worlds” helped conjure this particular holiday into existence – with the playing of our first 11th Hour Production: Vultures Over Low Doves.

2016 – Dark Tome

Ten years have passed! Fred passes the torch of hosting duties to David Rheinstrom and then goes out to finish up The Cleansed and launch a new podcast: The Dark Tome. Fred and David get on the horn together and have a terrifically fun episode introducing the new show, featuring a short story by Joe Hill, “The Devil on the Staircase.”

Listen: The Dark Tome, Episode 1

And our friends at 11th hour really overdid themselves this year!

Listen: Heavenly Deception (New England)
Listen: Cargo (Scotland)
Listen: The Vrykolakas (Texas)
Listen: Kill the Boy (Wisconsin)
Listen: A Dread Light Shines In The Serpent’s Sky (Kentucky)

Here’s to ten more years of thrills and chills, folks!