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Word for Word & E.M Forster’s ‘The Machine Stops’, part II - Conductor Ming Luke - Musical Birthdays

This week on Open Air, KALW’s radio magazine for the Bay Area Performing Arts in Times of Corona, we raise the virtual curtain of the Corona Radio Theater for the second part of The Machine Stops, a short story by E.M. Forster, presented by members of theater company Word for Word. Host David Latulippe talks with director Gendell Hing-Hernández, and with founding artistic director  JoAnne Winter about this production, which is also the Company’s first podcast. Plus, conductor Ming Luke stops by via Zoom to talk about the activities of his Berkeley Community Chorus and Orchestra during the pandemic, and to celebrate some musical birthdays.  

The Machine Stops is a science fiction story, written in 1909 by British novelist, essayist, and short story writer E.M. Forster (1879 - 1970), who is perhaps best known for his novels A Room with a View (1908), Howards End (1910) and his greatest success, A Passage to India (1924). 

In The Machine Stops, Forster describes a world in which humanity has moved underground and relies on a giant machine to provide all bodily and spiritual needs, with each individual living in isolation in a standard room, communicating via a kind of instant messaging/video conferencing apparatus. 

Word for Word produced The Machine Stops as the first installment of their new ‘Word for Wordcast’, the creation of which was inspired by Open Air’s invitation to broadcast a live reading of a short story as part of our Corona Radio Theater initiative. Word for Word opened the Corona Radio Theater series in April 2020 with Tobias Wolff's story, Firelight.

The Machine Stops is being presented over the course of three weeks. Last week’s episode was called The Air-Ship. This week we broadcast The Mending Apparatus; next week (January 21) is The Homeless

The Machine Stops is directed Gendell Hing-Hernández, with an original sound design by David R. Molina. Actors: Carla Gallardo, Susan Harloe*, David Everett Moore*, Brian Rivera* **Ryan Tasker*​. Dramaturgy:  Delia MacDougall. Sound engineer: Joe Moore. Production manager: Colm McNally (*=AEA **=SAG/AFTRA).

Open Air with host David Latulippe; heard live on Thursday, January 14 at 1pm, and archived afterwards at this location. Listen now or anytime…