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Corona Radio Theater: Milton’s ‘Bystanders’ - Lauren Gunderson: The Catastrophist - Peter Robinson

This week on Open Air, KALW’s radio magazine for the performing arts in Times of Corona, we feature an excerpt from the Central Works audio play Bystanders  as part of our Corona Radio Theater programming, and guest host Sarah Cahill talks to playwright Patricia Milton about her play and this production. Also, an interview with playwright Lauren Gunderson about her new play The Catastrophist, a story which features award-winning virologist, and Gunderson’s husband, Nathan Wolfe, who joins the conversation. Plus, Peter Robinson reviews the Netflix productions The Dig  and The Queen’s Gambit

Patricia Milton’s audio play Bystanders is the story of two women, Zayne and Hannah, who strive to connect, despite their grief and guilt, in the wake of a tragic and senseless act of gun violence. Zayne is determined to learn if Hannah could have foreseen the shooting, or even prevented it. Hannah is fed up with clichéd calls for “thoughts and prayers,” and she has a plan to put an end to the violence once and for all.

Bystanders was directed by Gary Graves; featuring Kimberly Ridgeway and Maria Marquis; with engineering, editing and sound design by Gregory Scharpen. Originally scheduled to close Central Works’ 30th season, Patricia Milton’s audio play Bystanders is now at http://centralworks.org/bystanders/.

We talk with playwright Lauren Gunderson and with her husband, award-winning virologist, ànd subject of her new play The Catastrophist: Dr. Nathan Wolfe. In a world premiere digital co-production between the Marin Theatre Company and Maryland’s Round House Theatre, The Catastrophist is a one-person show, filmed live on stage, starring William DeMeritt. The play explores Dr. Wolfe’s work as the scientist who proposed a plan to protect the economy from pandemics years before the COVID-19 outbreak.

Directed by Marin Theatre Company artistic director Jasson Minadakis, The Catastrophist is available for streaming through February 28. 

Plus, Open Air’s regular contributor and critic at large, Peter Robinson, reviews two new and outstanding Netflix productions: the British drama The Dig, directed by Simon Stone and starring Ralph Fiennes, about the 1939 excavation of the early medieval burying site at Sutton Hoo in Suffolk, England; and also The Queens Gambit, a mini-series about the life of an orphan chess prodigy, Elizabeth Harmon (Anya Taylor-Joy). 

Open Air with guest host Sarah Cahill, heard live on Thursday, February 18 at 1pm, and archived at this location thereafter. Listen now or anytime…