Tune In to SAG-AFTRA Summer Radio Plays
The summer season kicked off with two back-to-back old-time radio performances at the Autry Museum of the American West in Los Angeles on June 1. Organized by the SAG-AFTRA Radio Plays Committee, the evening began at 7:30 with The Summer People, a psychological thriller segment from CBS Radio Mystery Theater. The story revolves around an artistic couple looking for a tranquil place to hone their craft, but instead they discover an eerily picturesque town from which they cannot leave.
After scaring audiences, the evening concluded on a comical note with an episode from the popular old-time radio program The Great Gildersleeve. The series is considered the first successful spin-off show, built around the character Throckmorton P. Gildersleeve, a recurring feature of the radio situation comedy Fibber McGee and Molly. In his own series, Gildersleeve, who was portrayed by actor Harold Peary, was water commissioner for the fictional town of Summerfield and a bachelor who had been newly appointed as guardian of his orphaned niece and nephew.
The SAG-AFTRA Radio Plays are a long-established educational program originally conceived by the Seniors Committee of AFTRA and revived in 2009 as a tribute to one of the union’s oldest jurisdictions. They will be back at it with their annual winter performance in December, and members will again have the opportunity to audition and participate in this classic form of entertainment.
The cast of The Great Gildersleeve
Top photo: The cast of the SAG-AFTRA Radio Play rendition of the CBS Radio Mystery Theater episode The Summer People.