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Up Next in Open Air’s Corona Radio Theater: San Francisco Playhouse & ‘Sorry, Wrong Number’

This week on Open Air, KALW’s live radio magazine for the Bay Area Performing Arts in Times of Corona, the virtual stage of Open Air’s Corona Radio Theater features San Francisco Playhouse, and their production of one of the most celebrated plays in the history of American radio, Lucille Fletcher’s Noir thriller Sorry Wrong Number

None other than Orson Welles called Sorry, Wrong Number "the greatest single radio script ever written". The story originally aired on the Suspense radio program in 1943, and Fletcher adapted and expanded it for the 1948 film noir classic movie starring Barbara Stanwyck (pictured) and Burt Lancaster. In 1952, Stanwyck also performed in a production of the radio play. 

SF Playhouse’s co-founder and producing director, Susi Damilano will channel Stanwyck’s performance when she reads the part of Leona Stevenson, the spoiled, bedridden daughter of a wealthy businessman, who, while listening to what seems to be a crossed telephone connection, hears two men planning a woman's murder. 

Also starring in Sorry, Wrong Number are SF Playhouse artistic director Bill English in the male roles; and Wera von Wulfen in the female roles. 

Also, we talk with Robert Kelley, founding artistic director of TheatreWorks Silicon Valley, about his 50-year history at the Tony Award-winning Company. Earlier this month, he celebrated the 50th birthday of the theatre he founded as a young Stanford grad, and he is preparing to retire from this helm in June 2020. We will discuss his legacy and the start of the new season, which has been postponed until October 2020. 

We talk with Riley Nicholson, project manager at the Center For New Music about the activities of the Center in Times of Corona, which include a series of online ‘Encore Concerts’; the launch of an ‘album of the week’ to highlight contemporary voices and help artists sell albums; artist resource toolkits; an online Feldenkrais workshop; and much more. Joining the conversation is Blaine Todd, curator of this week’s Encore Concert, featuring vocalist/composer Robert Aiki Aubrey Lowe, sound artist/dronesmith Chris Duncan, and the electronics and percussion duo IMA.

Plus, we check in with composer Jake Heggie, who is featured on this week’s edition of the Noe Music Listening Club, an initiative of Meena Bhasin and Owen Dalby (who joins the conversation), co-artistic directors of Noe Valley Chamber Music. They have shifted their main focus from live concerts to an online listening club using Zoom and a high-quality livestream radio. 

Open Air, with host David Latulippe, will air live on Thursday, May 7 at 1pm and will be available for listening at this very location, forever afterwards…