The attempt to find new directions in radio drama and to reach a higher level of intelligence in productions than now offered will be the aim of the Literary Committee of the Radio Workshop. They will deal particularly with the theory and practice of poetic drama on the air.
The group is learning the fundamental technique through Columbia Broadcasting records which CBS has donated to the Workshop together with numerous copies of working scripts. Once this is mastered they intend to hold a competition among themselves for possible scripts to augment those which they already have.
Problems that the board must surmount are varied; speeches must be more sharply worded than necessary on the stare; the number of characters speaking in one scene must be limited to prevent confusion; the time element must be surmounted; all sounds must be mentioned by the characters in the play so that they can be clearly recognized. All these factors contribute to the smoothness of the production and are apparent weaknesses in present radio drama.
Most of the work now under way is assistance of other branches of the Workshop in the perfection of their projects. Of such a nature is the work being done with the Social Science Committee on their program called "America Goss to War." This, however, is purely temporary and for the most part the committee will be interested in original scripts and the arranging of short stories and dramas for production. Already they are working on an original play by Assistant Professor Theodore Spencer will full permission to make all necessary revisions.
Over 80 are participating in the Committee's work which for the Spring term will consist completely in the making and remaking of records of their productions, Officers are Barry Brown '41, Chairman, and D. Wilson Webb '40. Executive Committeeman at Large.