Instead of producing a radio play this year, Moab’s community radio station, KZMU, created a festival format with several short radio plays produced by community members.
The station eventually received ten submissions for radio plays, each under 7 minutes. The plays will be shown at an event on April 9 at 6:30 p.m. at Star Hall (159 E. Center St.), and while there won’t be live play like in previous years, there will be demos. Foley Live, a light show and the opportunity to hear the plays before they hit the radio in late April.
“It’s going to be different from what people used to experience when they come to a KZMU radio play, because there won’t be a big live production,” station manager Serah Mead said at KZMU, but she still expects the live, community event to be a fun and creative experience.
“People will be inspired to ignite the magic of their imaginations,” she said.
Plays have been produced in a wide variety of genres and by a wide variety of people, Mead said. Genres include comedy and surreal and science fiction; producers include a Moab Charter School teacher, whose play was performed by his students, and a KZMU staff member, whose play was performed by his KZMU colleagues.
Mead said she doesn’t know if the station will continue the format in future years, but for now she considers it a success.
“I really like how the radio festival is going so far,” she said. “I think people are just starting to get their feet wet in this format. And we had an amazing turnout – I felt like we’d be lucky if we got four submissions, and we’ll get ten. It’s really encouraging and tells me there’s a lot of creativity in this community.
Tickets for the event are $15, available at KZMU Station (1734 Rocky Road), Back of Beyond Books (83 N. Main St.) or at the door.
The plays will air on radio near the end of KZMU’s Spring Radiothon fundraiser, which runs April 15-23. The station aims to raise $40,000 this spring and $40,000 during the fall radiothon. The funds will directly support three main efforts, Mead said: hiring an AmeriCorps position to focus on youth programming; upgrades to KZMU broadcast equipment, particularly to the radio tower that feeds the 90.1 FM signal; and building repairs in the broadcast studio and production studio.
Donations can be made to www.kzmu.org/giveby calling the station at 435-259-5968, or in person at the station at 1734 Rocky Road, Moab.