Bradbury Dramas Reprised on BBC Radio 4

BBC Radio 4 Extra has online Ray Bradbury – Tales of the Bizarre, “Strange and chilling tales from the master of thrillers.”

First broadcast in 1997, each episode includes an introduction by Bradbury that explains how he came to write the story.

The episodes are available for a limited time after their original airing. (Other stories in the series have already cycled off.)

Many of the adaptations are by Brian Sibley. Of his three episodes currently available online he says —

‘The Wind’ (technically, one of the most evocatively-realized examples of my radio work), ‘The Scythe’ (a story that moved me when I first read it and which moves me still) and ‘Jack in the Box’ (in this version a tour de force conversation between narrator and character).Radio 4 Extra never notify writers when their programmes are being repeated, so if you want to hear these broadcasts, you’ll have to move fast to catch them before they vanish back into the ether!

The series includes two dramatizations by Catherine Czerkawska, “And So Died Riabouchinska,” and, airing November 29, “The Day it Rained Forever.”

Jack in the Box – 30 min – 2 days left to listen – Adapted by Brian Sibley

A young boy lives an isolated life – until a death opens the door to the outside world…

The Scythe – 30 min – 9 days left to listen — Adapted by Brian Sibley

A young farmer gets more than he bargained for when he stumbles across a seemingly deserted farm.

The Wind – 30 min – 16 days left to listen — Adapted by Brian Sibley

A man fears for his frantic friend, who claims he’s being pursued by enraged winds out to exact revenge.

And So Died Riabouchinska  – 30 min – 23 days left to listen — Adapted by Catherine Czerkawska

A man lies murdered in a basement – but there’s a surprising non-human witness.

Available after its November 29 airing will be –

The Day It Rained Forever – 30 min – not yet aired – Adapted by Catherine Czerkawska

The last remaining residents of a drought-stricken hotel receive salvation from an enigmatic source.

[Thanks to John King Tarpinian for the story.]

Net Spreads News of Bradbury House Teardown

John King Tarpinian’s photos and story about the demolition of Ray Bradbury’s house have reached  a wide audience and touched a lot of hearts in the past 24 hours.

Bloggers also are weighing in —

Brett at Screen Door Revolution has these trenchant comments in Dear Smart People: YOU ARE LOSING THE CULTURE WAR:

There’s little doubt in my mind that, say, James Franco’s house will someday be preserved as a culturally-significant landmark for future generations to behold, gilded and immortalized for all-time, and hailed as a triumph of freedom.

I apologize if perhaps this notion seems, at first, overly cynical, but it’s not hard to look around and read the tea leaves. The Gatsby house is allowed to crumble and Ray Bradbury’s house knocked down for the sum of $1.7 million, thus depriving future generations the ability to physically visit those places where the stuff of dreams was quite literally created. And what exactly of significance and value are we leaving in place of that loss? Another Walgreens? Another CVS or horrifying McDonald’s? And nowhere interesting to visit besides Disneyland?

Brian Sibley in The Magician’s House calls upon cherished memories and has more great photos of the house and various Bradbury artifacts.

Painted the yellow of Dandelion Wine, the house was an extension of the man: it was the place where he crafted novels, short stories, plays, essays and poetry and it was crammed full of Bradburyness: his own books, of course, but those, too, of the writers and artists he loved, and then, all those paintings and pictures: animation and comic-book art and the work of two of his favourite artists: the mysterious Gothic or futuristic visions of Joe Mugnaini (who illustrated so many of his books) and stunning landscapes by Eyvind Earle, also known as the man responsible for styling Disney’s most stylish animated feature, Sleeping Beauty. Not to mention all the toys, trinkets, trivia, nick-knacks ad geegaws…

Also noteworthy is Mark Evanier’s News From Me post A Sound of Thunder published last weekend immediately after the story broke:

I just read some online messages that when they quit the demolition work on Friday, the house was without a roof. And now it’s raining in Los Angeles…

Those of you who are familiar with Ray’s story “There Will Come Soft Rains” will appreciate the imagery.