Wireless Theatre Company

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The Wireless Theatre Company is an online audio theatre company. It was founded in July 2007 by Mariele Runacre Temple, daughter of actress Jenny Runacre.

Overview[edit]

The company produces radio drama, audio comedy and short stories for digital download in MP3[1] format, creating a modern forum for radio productions and specialises in new writing from international authors, originally beginning as a not-for-profit company. In February 2008, Nicholas Parsons became patron of the company, recorded an interview and appeared at the company's official launch party in July 2008, along with Richard O'Brien.[2]

It has showcased as of the end of 2013, 177 actors (a mix of established names - see below - and new performers to audio), as well as 43 new writers and 35 crew members[3] and had won several radio awards and nominations for its output, all "designed to nurture and encourage fresh new writers, up and coming acting talent and bring audio theatre to the 'iPod generation'".[4] Its recent output was named as one of the Best Twenty Radio Productions of 2012,[5] while Mariele Runacre Temple was placed on the top 200 Sound Women List.[6] It is a member of the Radio Independents Group[7] and in 2011 won a place on the BBC Radio Preferred Supplier's List.[8]

As of the end of 2013, the current website[9] is visited by 15,000 unique visitors per month, of which 7% become subscribers.[10]

Notable developments (2008-2013)[edit]

In May 2008, Prunella Scales starred in its production of the Youth of Old Age with Knight Mantell and directed The Ceremony, which featured Jenny Runacre. Wireless Theatre Company has also worked with Julian Glover, David Benson, Timothy West, Christopher Timothy and Josephine Tewson.[11] Glover worked on the company's first audio series, The Strange Case of Springheel'd Jack - the first series of "The Springheel Saga", based around the legend of Springheeled Jack.[12]

The Wireless Theatre Company has been featured in Metro[13] and Live Radio Theatre? The Perfect Night Out or In in The Guardian.[14]

Notable contributors[edit]

The Wireless Theatre Company has attracted several notable contributors; in 2012 Stephen Fry recorded a guest appearance, playing a fictional version of himself, in the company's production of "We Are The BBC".[15]

Contributor Production or Role Year
Nicholas Parsons Company Patron; performing in "We Are The BBC", "The Springheel Saga, Series Two: The Legend Of Springheel'd Jack" 2008, 2012, 2013-2014
Richard O'Brien Writer of "Pig In Boots", London Horror Festival Judge 2008, 2012
Kim Newman London Horror Festival Judge 2013
Prunella Scales Performing in "The Youth of Old Age", "On Three, Seasons"; Director of "The Ceremony" 2009
Timothy West "On Three", "Seasons" 2009
Jenny Runacre "The Ceremony", "Shared", "The Springheel Saga, Series Three: The Secret Of Springheel'd Jack" 2014
Josephine Tewson "Leaves In The Wind" 2009
Julian Glover "The Springheel Saga, Series One: The Strange Case Of Springheel'd Jack" 2011-2012
David Benson "Spook Squad", "The Springheel Saga, Series One, Two & Three" 2008, 2010, 2013, 2014
Abi Titmuss "Stage Fright" 2010
Lionel Blair "Gino Ginelli Is Still Dead" 2011
Rula Lenska "Shared" 2011
Gordon Kennedy "The Maiden Without Hands" 2011
Christopher Timothy "We Are Not The BBC" 2011
John Antrobus Director/Co-writer of "Not Tonight Caligula" 2010
Ray Galton Co-writer of "Not Tonight Caligula" 2010
Stephen Fry "We Are The BBC" 2012
Linda Robson "Gino Ginelli Lives!" 2012
Shane Rimmer "The Mighty Carlins" 2013
Brian Blessed Narrator of "Life At Death's Door", performer in "Dead London" 2013
Matthew Kelly "The Springheel Saga, Series Three: The Secret Of Springheel'd Jack" Planned for release in 2014
Jo Brand Narrator of "Life At Death's Door II" Planned for release in 2014

Wireless Theatre Live[edit]

The company launched its LIVE recordings in 2008, the first being the Wireless Theatre Company pantomime, Pig in Boots written by Richard O'Brien in December 2008. Live productions include The Grimm of Stottesden Hall, loosely based on the stories of Edgar Allan Poe, and 2010: Space Commander!, both written by Stuart Price. The company produced a live radio recording of Frankie Howerd's play Not Tonight Caligula by Ray Galton and John Antrobus at Leicester Square Theatre, London, and a second Halloween special entitled Phonophobia,[16] co-written by Robert Valentine and Gareth Parker. In 2011, it undertook a season of live recordings of Grimm's Fairytales at the Roundhouse Theatre,[17] while since 2012 it has launched the London Horror Festival.[18] 2013 saw live shows produced by Wireless Theatre in London (including a "Sci-Fi Showcase"[19] and a "36 Hour Theatre Challenge"[20] at the LOST Theatre) and at the Buxton Festival.[21]

Wireless Theatre Kids[edit]

In November 2010 the company launched Wireless Theatre Kids to produce original radio drama and stories for children.[22]

Awards and nominations[edit]

Since 2009 The Wireless Theatre Company has received several award nominations and awards, most notably in 2011 when it won Best Entertainment Producer and Best Online Multi-Platform Creator at The Radio Academy Radio Production Awards.

Award Organisation/Year Nomination Win
Best Radio Drama Producer Fringe Report Awards, 2009[23] Mariele Runacre Temple Won
Best Entertainment Producer Radio Production Awards, 2011[24] Mariele Runacre Temple Won[25]
Best Online Platform Radio Production Awards, 2011[24] Mariele Runacre Temple Won[25]
Best Drama Producer Radio Production Awards, 2011[24] Mariele Runacre Termple, Robert Valentine, Jack Bowman Nomination
Best Creative Radio Production Awards, 2011[24] Jack Bowman Nomination
Silver Award - Best Fantasy Audio Production Mark Time Ogles, 2011 The Springheel Saga: The Strange Case Of Springheel'd Jack Won[26]
Best Drama Production British Public Radio Awards, 2013 The Springheel Saga: The Strange Case Of Springheel'd Jack Nomination[27]
Best Entertainment Production British Public Radio Awards, 2013 Radio Hoo-Haa Nomination [27]
Best Documentary (Long-form) British Public Radio Awards, 2013 Life At Death's Door Won[28]
Best Production War Of The Worlds 75, 2013 Dead London[29] Won
Gold Award - Best Fantasy Audio Production Mark Time Ogles, 2013 The Springheel Saga: The Legend Of Springheel'd Jack Won[30]

2013 - Current (Documentaries, BBC Radio 4, New Model and Relaunch)[edit]

2013 saw the company branched into documentaries, beginning with "Life At Death's Door", narrated by Brian Blessed,[31] followed by "The Springheel Files", narrated by Cameron K. McEwan.

October saw its first production broadcast on BBC Radio 4 as part of the Wednesday Afternoon Play, written by Marty Ross, a dramatic adaptation of "The Lady Macbeth Of Mtsensk", directed by Cherry Cookson.[32]

In the summer of 2013, it was announced that The Wireless Theatre Company would change its business model, relaunching as Wireless Theatre Ltd. This decision was made to help increase production and support the actors, writers and crew involved in the company,[33] and as such, was seeking investment as a result,[10] a move supported by Parsons as Company Patron in an online video.[34] As such, in December 2013, Wireless Theatre ceased to be a not-for-profit company and became a subscription-based audio platform.[35]

At the end of 2013, it finished the year with releasing "Cross Party" co-written by Tom Harris (British politician) with his wife, Carolyn[36] and the second series of "The Springheel Saga: The Legend Of Springheel'd Jack", featuring Nicholas Parsons.[37][38]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Frequently Asked Questions - what format do I receive the audio in?". Retrieved 24 December 2013. 
  2. ^ "The Best Night Of My Life". WTC. Retrieved 24 December 2013. 
  3. ^ "About Us". WTL InnerSanxtum. Retrieved 24 December 2013. 
  4. ^ "LOST Links". LOST Theatre. Retrieved 24 December 2013. 
  5. ^ "RADIO DRAMA REVIEWS’ TWENTY BEST PRODUCTIONS OF 2012". Radio Drama Review. Retrieved 24 December 2013. 
  6. ^ "The 200 List". Sound Women. Retrieved 24 December 2013. 
  7. ^ "Membership Directory". Radio Independents Group. 
  8. ^ "The Wireless Theatre Company". Sponsume. Retrieved 24 December 2013. 
  9. ^ "Wireless Theatre Company". InnerSanxtum/WTL. Retrieved 24 December 2013. 
  10. ^ a b "Wireless Theatre Seeking Showstopping Investor". Money Maker Magazine. Retrieved 24 December 2013. 
  11. ^ "Wireless Theatre Company". Mashedia. Retrieved 24 December 2013. 
  12. ^ "Wireless Theatre Company". Wireless Theatre. Retrieved 14 March 2014. 
  13. ^ Gibson, Anthony (16 December 2008). "The weird and wonderful world of the web". Metro. Retrieved 23 May 2009. 
  14. ^ Gardner, Lynn (14 October 2009). "Live Radio Theatre? The Perfect Night Out or In". The Guardian. Retrieved 30 December 2013. 
  15. ^ "Stephen Fry voices drama about the BBC". Radio Today. 11 September 2012. Retrieved 30 December 2013. 
  16. ^ "Phonophobia". remotegoat.co.uk. Retrieved 30 December 2013. 
  17. ^ Foster, Alistair (6 December 2011). "Audiences faint at truly Grimm fairy tale". London Evening Standard. Retrieved 30 December 2013. 
  18. ^ "Stage Fright 2012". London Horror Festival. Retrieved 24 December 2013. 
  19. ^ "Sci-Fi Showcase review". Female Arts. Retrieved 24 December 2013. 
  20. ^ "36 Hour Theatre Challenge". WTC Facebook Group. Retrieved 24 December 2013. 
  21. ^ "Redder Than Roses at Buxton Festival". 21st Century Poe. Retrieved 24 December 2013. 
  22. ^ "About Us". Wireless Theatre Kids. Retrieved 24 December 2013. 
  23. ^ "Seventh Annual Fringe Report Awards Announced". What's On Stage. Retrieved 24 December 2013. 
  24. ^ a b c d "RPA 2011 – Nominations". Radio Academy. Retrieved 24 December 2013. 
  25. ^ a b "RPA 2011 Winners". Radio Academy. Retrieved 24 December 2013. 
  26. ^ "Mark Time Awards". Great Northern Radio. Retrieved 24 December 2013. 
  27. ^ a b "British Public Radio Awards - The Finalists". BPRA. Retrieved 24 December 2013. 
  28. ^ "British Public Radio Awards - The Winners". BPRA. Retrieved 24 December 2013. 
  29. ^ "Dead London - Aural Stage". Aural Stage. Retrieved 24 December 2013. 
  30. ^ "Mark Time Awards". Great Northern Radio. Retrieved 24 December 2013. 
  31. ^ Theato, Ann. "Ann Theato News". Ann Theato. Retrieved 24 December 2013. 
  32. ^ "Radio review: Lady Macbeth of Mtsensk; The Confessions of Caminada; Democracy for Beginners". The Stage. Retrieved 24 December 2013. 
  33. ^ WirelessTheatre (11 September 2013). "Important message to all WTC listeners about our new subscription plans". Twitter. 
  34. ^ "A Message From Our Patron". WTL InnerSanxtum. Retrieved 24 December 2013. 
  35. ^ "Audio News: Wireless Theatre Company To Introduce Subscription Charges". Starburst Magazine. Retrieved 24 December 2013. 
  36. ^ "Spare us ministers' 'message-sending' over the marriage tax break". The Telegraph. Retrieved 24 December 2013. 
  37. ^ "Audio Review: THE TERROR OF LONDON". Starburst Magazine. Retrieved 24 December 2013. 
  38. ^ "The Springheel Saga – Series 2: The Legend of Springheel’d Jack Review". Frost Magazine. Retrieved 24 December 2013. 

External links[edit]