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Table read for What Davidson Heard April 4, 2014

Posted by William Spear in >> Dramatic Radio.
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This past Tuesday, 1 April, The Book Garden, A Community Bookshop in Frenchtown, New Jersey, hosted a table read for “What Davidson Heard.” The evening revealed strengths and weaknesses of the script, an audio drama interpretation of H.G. Wells’ “The Remarkable Case of Davidson’s Eyes,” (Part of “The Stolen Bacillus and Other Incidents” by H. G. Wells at Gutenberg) and the participants’ input have provided landmarks towards making the script production ready.

Serialized in three parts of approximately ten minutes each, WHAT DAVIDSON HEARD is a contemporary story set in Highgate Chemicals on its final day of operation in the midst of a violent thunderstorm. The main character is Sydney Davidson, General Manager of the plant, who is found screaming and covered in blood. But it’s not her blood. Further, Davidson is experiencing brutal attacks by an unseen assailant.

The Character List is as follows:

ANNOUNCER: Gets the audience into, and out of, the program. Male or Female.

MISTER CHAMBERS: Banker to the Davidson family. Trying to finalize the sale of Highgate Chemicals. Male, 55-60 years old.

TOM BELLOWS: Longstanding executive of Highgate Chemicals. Male, 50-55 years old.

SYDNEY DAVIDSON: General Manager, and third generation family owner, of Highgate Chemicals. Female, late 20’s-30 years old.

DOCTOR BOYCE: Doctor to the Davidson family. Female, 50-55-years old.

LIEUTENANT WADE: Investigating the attacks on Sydney. Also, ex-wife of Tom Bellows. Female, 50-55 years old.

The following draft excerpt, which includes Doctor Boyce, Tom Bellows, Mister Chambers, and Sydney Davidson, appears towards the end of Part One:

BOYCE: She’s in here.

BELLOWS: Let’s go in.

BOYCE: I want to warn you of a few things.

CHAMBERS: Of what.

BOYCE: She’s stopped screaming but is still susceptible to outbursts.

BELLOWS: Do something for her.

BOYCE: I poured sedatives into her but nothing worked. Finally a warm damp towel over her eyes calmed her down.

BELLOWS: We’ll be quiet.

BOYCE: There’s more.

BELLOWS: I said we’d be quiet.

BOYCE: She keeps calling for “Jackson.”

BELLOWS: Nobody in the plant’s named Jackson.

CHAMBERS: She’s never spoken of a “Jackson” to me.

BOYCE: Avoid the topic and she’ll stay calm. (BEAT) Now we’ll go in.


BOYCE: (Speaks softly) Miss Davidson. (BEAT) Sydney?

DAVIDSON: (Off MIC and behind DOOR) Yes Doctor Boyce.

BOYCE: Tom and Mister Chambers are here. May we come in?

DAVIDSON: (Off MIC and behind DOOR) Of course.

BOYCE: (Whispers to TOM and CHAMBERS) Remember, no mention of “Jackson.” (To DAVIDSON) Here we come.

CHAMBERS: (BEAT) Hello Miss Davidson.

DAVIDSON: That sounds like Mister Chambers.

CHAMBERS: Without even seeing me, very good. You gave us quite a fright young lady.

DAVIDSON: I scared myself. (BEAT and raises VOICE) Tom?

BELLOWS: Right here, sleepyhead.

DAVIDSON: Sorry for the excitement.

BELLOWS: You livened things up. What happened?

DAVIDSON: One moment I was walking to my office and the next I was here.

BELLOWS: You didn’t see anything?

DAVIDSON: It’s hard to explain with this towel on my face. (To BOYCE) Doctor Boyce, can I take it off?

BOYCE: If you’re up to it.

DAVIDSON: I am. (BEAT) That’s better. I can look- (Terrified and thrashing ARMS) Get away from me! Stay back, Jackson, or I’ll call the police. (Screams)


The next read is at The Book Garden on Tuesday 29 April. If you are interested in throwing lines or offering feedback please leave a comment or send a note to William Spear at two.plus.plus.productions@gmail.com.


Anthology Fanzine: Tiny Mesa Does Albuquerque This Weekend June 20, 2009

Posted by William Spear in >> Dramatic Radio, >> News.
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The 2009 Mesa National Poetry Slam Team of Lauren Perry, Tufiq Shyeb, Neil Gearns and Brit Shostak, travel this weekend to Albuquerque, NM for the 2009 Southwest Shootout. Come on out and join us!
Here is the information, direct from ABQslams.org

So the confirmed list looks like this:

  • Albuquerque
  • Denver – Mercury Cafe
  • Denver – Nuba
  • Phoenix
  • Salt Lake City
  • Dallas
  • Amarillo
  • Oklahoma City
  • Mesa
  • Berkeley
  • Oklahoma City – Stomp the Stage

Thursday, end of the business day is the last day to book a room at the host hotel, the Hyatt Regency. I’m happy to say the block of rooms is almost entirely spoken for. But y’all still have time.

The full info is this:

Host Hotel – Hyatt Regency Hotel, 333 Tijeras NW

Call Hyatt (505) 842-1234

We are part of the “SW Shootout” group under ABQ Poetry Slam or ABQSlams

Also, here’s the schedule:

Friday, June 19

Registration, Blackbird Buvette (509 Central NW), 3-6 pm

Preliminary bouts 1 & 3, Blackbird Buvette, 7 & 9 pm

Preliminary bouts 2 & 4, 1Kind Studios, 10th & Coal SW, 7 & 9 pm

Saturday, June 20

SW Slammasters meeting, 10 am-Noon, Hyatt Regency meeting room

Haiku Challenge, 1 pm, Blackbird Buvette


Team and individual (4 teams, 4 indies)

The Historic KiMo Theater, 7 pm (doors open at 6:30)

Tickets $14 gen. admission, 12 students/seniors available thru the KiMo Box Office or Ticketmaster

Sunday, June 21

Youth Open Slam & Team Teen Slam, 1 pm, N4th Theater, 4904 4th St. NW (just north of 4th and Griegos)


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Anthology: Poetry Slam on Thursday June 11, 2009 at 8PM June 11, 2009

Posted by William Spear in >> Dramatic Radio, >> News.
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In the tradition of Arizona performance poetry, Anthology, the state’s longest running performance poetry nonprofit presents the next great Mesa poetry tradition.

Poetry Slam is a competition, where poets perform their work to be judged by the audience based on the presentation and content. The Anthology Poetry Slam has three rounds, and in each round the poets perform in random order, with a 3 minute time limit for each performance.

It’s a no holds barred verbal duel that brings out the best in each writer and performer.

  • This show happens Each and Every Thursday
  • All shows start at 8PM
  • Suggested Donation is $5
  • Cash Prize awarded for first place


Poetry Slam


Date:     Thursday, June 4, 2009
Time:     8:00pm – 10:00pm
Location:     Queen’s Pizzeria
Street:     125 W. Main St.
City/Town:     Mesa, AZ

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Sounds of Greatness: Johnny Parks calls Desperate Times’ stretch drive in the 1984 Gardenia Derby May 18, 2009

Posted by William Spear in >> Dramatic Radio, >> Radio Drama.
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In 1984, veteran sports announcer Johnny Parks was on-hand for the Gardenia Derby. Run annually on the second to last Monday in May in Roberts County, that year’s race featured three big, strong horses that were the class of the field – Marvelous Son, Beautiful Flowers, and All Aboard. All three had outstanding records and each was capable of capturing the first place Champion’s Wreath.

Another seven horses were entered with varying chances to win. But the eleventh horse was a scrawny affair with a spotty record – nine races with one win, no shows, and one place. Its name was Desperate Times. The horse’s owner once ran him in a claims race . . . but no one claimed him.

Nobody gave Desperate Times any chance of winning. Until the field entered the far turn. With a cheering crowd in the background, Johnny Parks was in the midst of the action:

PARKS: “Marvelous Son, Beautiful Flowers, and All Aboard are neck and neck and neck and Desperate Times may need a taxi to finish this thing. He isn’t even in the same zip code. Desperate Times is . . . hold on. Desperate Times is moving on the field. Cancel the cab, Desperate Times has caught the pack and knifes through them.”

The crowd saw the move made by Desperate Times and began to cheer on the horse.

PARKS: (OVER CHEERS) “Desperate Times has Marvelous Son in his sights and gives the big boy a black eye. Beautiful Flowers wilts under Desperate Times’ relentless attack. There’s only one horse left between Desperate Times and victory. Desperate Times is flying over the track and All Aboard is desperately trying to hold on. All Aboard inches ahead but Desperate Times answers the challenge. . . . HERE COMES DESPERATE TIMES.”

The crowd roared louder with each stride of Desperate Times. And Parks began to play off their emotion.

PARKS: (LOUDER OVER CHEERS) “All Aboard can’t believe he’s being caught and Desperate Times is anything but. It’s All Aboard and Desperate Times. . . . All Aboard is holding on for dear life but Desperate Times is a freight train. An express train that won’t stop until it wins. Coming to the wire and it’s All Aboard. Desperate Times and All Aboard. All Aboard and Desperate Times. Crossing the finish line it’s . . . DESPERATE TIMES.”

With one magnificent stretch drive, Desperate Times caught All Aboard and won the 1984 Gardenia Derby.

 ~ ~

Excerpted from The Passing of Johnny Parks (c) 2009 By William E. Spear.

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Sounds of greatness: Yogi Berra’s 84 years, and counting, of one-liners May 12, 2009

Posted by William Spear in >> Dramatic Radio, >> News.
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Stats on Yogi Berra


  • Lawrence Peter “Yogi” Berra on May 12, 1925 in St. Louis.


  • A friend said he looked like a Hindu holy man.


  • 15 All-Star selections;
  • 10 World Series championships;
  • 3 American League Most Valuable Player awards; and
  • Inducted into Hall of Fame in 1972.

Like all great players, his true genius went beyond his impressive statistics. In Berra’s case, it was his command, sort of, of the English language. Simply put, his one-liners were the equivalent of three or four lifetimes of grand slams.


  • “It ain’t over ’til it’s over.”
  • “I want to thank you for making this day necessary.”
  • “It’s like déjà vu all over again.”
  • “When you get to a fork in the road, take it.”
  • “I didn’t really say everything I said.”
  • “Nobody goes there anymore because it’s too crowded.”
  • “We have a good time together, even when we’re not together.”
  • “Our similarities are different.”
  • “You can observe a lot by watching.”
  • “It gets late early around here…”
  • “A nickel ain’t worth a dime anymore.”
  • “If I didn’t wake up I’d still be sleeping.”
  • “Always go to other people’s funerals otherwise they won’t go to yours.”
  • “You have to give 100 percent in the first half of the game. If that isn’t enough, in the second half, you have to give what is left.”
  • “Ninety percent of this game is half mental.”

Forget what he did on the baseball field, his one-liners are Hall of Fame material.

Happy birthday, Mr. Berra.

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