Our Grey Whisper story began a few weeks ago in “Anthracite in Blue” and continued the following week in “Anthracite in Two”. This week we present the conclusion to the the story with “Anthracite Adieu”.
After that we present a sneak peek at special Harriet Holmes story entitled “Sleep of Angels”.
Anthracite Adieu features
Jandi Hanna as Madeline Forthright/The Grey Whisper
Rich Cyr as Rusty
Kurt Boucher as Dalton Pressege
Nick Bourne as the Announcer
Robert C. Fullerton as Number Nine
Melissa Gabehart as Ms. Harcourt
Lana Peck as Store Owner
Olivia Wadsworth as Jean Craftwell/Number Four
Dan Willey as Agent (who happens to come from) Orange
We present two stories in this episode.
The first story we see a return of The Grey Whisper and Rusty in the beginning of a three part saga: Anthracite in Blue! Someone has stolen some fiber art from the fourth most popular fiber art museum in northern Massachusetts. Madeline Forthright and Rusty travel to Athol, Massachusetts and investigate!
Then, what would happen if a bunch of Bradys went to space? Find out in the Spacy Squad!
We returned to the Grey Whisper character, our pulp hero. We noted that we had not completed a story “The Vampire Sloth” and that what was written was also the first part of a story and for a moment considered if it would be funny to only write the beginnings of the Grey Whisper Stories but decided we’ll definitely pay off each one, no matter how long it takes.
Further, what I had prepared was the concept of having at least two stories recorded for each episode and then have at least one of those stories have a cliff hanger and bring back the audience the following week.
So I had the Grey Whisper story prepared as a three partner. We’ve already recorded the first two (see next episode for part two!) and we’ll record the final chapter of this three part story tomorrow.
This episode marks the return of Conrad Sienkiewicz as our announcer and Caroline Sienkiewicz (who formerly portrayed Darly in our Daring Darling Darly episode!)
Additionally, original cast member Kurt Boucher wrote a story of The Brady Bunch in space called the Spacy Squad. With some tweaking in the edits, we recorded the Spacy Squad on the same night and it worked out exceptionally well.
Episode was written, created and produced by J .Timothy Quirk and recorded at WAPJ Torrington Community Radio
Episode 28 features an HP Lovecraft inspired story written by Lana Peck, the Corpse Conductor written and performed by Josh Newey and The Snarflepoofs return!
The Corpse Conductor introduces us to the stories and provides a wonderful bookend to the episode. For the third and final installment of Nightmare Junction (The October Halloween episodes) Josh brings it home for us and deserved a week off to rest the vocal chords!
The Call of the Trolley is the first full story segment written by a cast member and it’s wonderful. Created by Lana Peck, it was pitched at the time we were discussing ideas for the Nightmare Junction stories. David Robinson was cast to portray the character (a stand-in for Lovecraft) and Lana’s script gives two nods to two prior Nutmeg Junction stories.
We then conclude with Snarflepoofs-Snarfleween, the mandatory holiday special. Snarflepoofs are “America’s Most Recent Toy Branded Children’s Entertainment Product” and the idea makes fun of the types of shows that only serve to sell toys by having stories and situations that actually discuss concepts of substance. So Snarfleween allows us to talk about climate change and the environment by talking about an Apple bobbing competition all while the characters maintain their philosophical inclinations. We introduce Nick Bourne into the Junction team. Nick and Lana had worked together under the direction of Keith Paul for a staged reading show at the Warner! (note: I had the opportunity to work for Keith in a staged reading many years ago with, among many others, Lana and Kurt Boucher!) Nick will return next week with two roles as he acts in both story segments we present!
Once again, Jandi Hanna is the narrator for the Snarfle-poofs and has a few fun commercials for “Flattread Tires” and “Greedymine Bottled Water”. Melissa Gabehart returns as “Sneetchey” (Nietzsche) and Jeff Savage is Plato! The first joke in this story pays homage to a famous Jack Benny line (we just did it in our own way). Kurt is Renny (Rene Descartes), Olivia is Wollstonecraft and Lana is Simone. We decided not to keep the “Princess” joke going as it had been done already and it would be cumbersome to continue it. The actors like these roles so much, we might have to do a Thanksgiving special, a “not as loved as Halloween or Christmas but still mandatory viewing holiday special”. And Rich Cyr becomes a Snarflepoof-which one? Listen to find out!
Nutmeg Junction: Nightmare Junction Special #3
Was directed by J. Timothy Quirk and recorded at WAPJ Torrington Community Radio
The Corpse Conductor was written by and starred Josh Newey
Intrepid private eye Harriet Holmes meets an iconic detective duo to conclude her search for the Lost Episode of Nutmeg Junction. She locates the story of Trace Duggins: Crime Illustrator in a send-up to the golden age of radio.
There used to be an old time radio program called Casey: Crime Photographer which was nothing more than a detective show with the protagonist who was a photographer for a newspaper. When creating a parody of that show, Kurt Moffett, who is himself a reporter for a newspaper as well as an integral part of the WAPJ radio station family, was tapped to play the lead.
That being said didn’t want to do a photographer and thought a crime “illustrator” had more appeal especially as the character to wax philosophically about the art choices and bake in to the story line a specific reason why the perpetrator would be caught through art. Since I wasn’t going to use “case-y” and thought Trace would be a great name for an artist.
Occasionally we’ll leave some moments of behind the scenes humor/reactions in the show itself. We do that at the very end of the episode courtesy of Rich Cyr!
The Trace Duggins story line is introduced as part of the Harriet Holmes mythology, or rather trilogy for this is the third and probably final part of the “Search for the Lost Episode” saga. To be sure, we’ll have Harriet Holmes in many more adventures but we’ve done three “lost episodes” shows and as it says in the script, three is a magic number. Olivia Wadsworth is wonderful in the role and her monologues have some of the better one-liners.
I’m excited that the show reintroduces Netta and Nathaniel Chance, our tip of the hat to the Thin Man series, and I absolutely love the way Lana Peck and Kurt Boucher channel the iconic era. These characters were recorded on our very first recording day (ever) of Nutmeg Junction and they deserve some more adventures!
The location of the Harriet Holmes section is in Broughton’s Meadow which was the original name for Florence, Massachusetts area in the Pioneer Valley. Their library is Lilly Library and the iconic and wonderful public park is Look Park. See if you can hear the references to these locations!
Also there are a few shout outs to Leominster Massachusetts! The show is heading to Leominster’s WLPZ on October 20th!
We continue our new way of creating Episode art-with photos taken via Kurt Boucher and myself (not sure who took which photos but it was a collaborative effort on the team). Jandi Hanna located a magnifying glass which we used during the photo shoot and in future episode covers it will probably be seen!
EPISODE 25: HARRIET HOLMES AND THE SEARCH FOR THE LOST EPISODE III WITH TRACE DUGGINS: CRIME ILLUSTRATOR
WAS WRITTEN AND DIRECTED BY J. TIMOTHY QUIRK (C)2018
OLIVIA WADSWORTH AS HARRIET HOLMES/MS. SUSPECTON/MRS. GRIMLEY
KURT MOFFETT AS TRACE DUGGINS: CRIME ILLUSTRATOR
LANA PECK AS NETTA CHANCE/NARRATOR
KURT BOUCHER AS NATHANIEL CHANCE/MR. GRIMLEY
MELISSA GABEHART AS STRANGER ON A TRAIN/MAUDE PATTERSON
A delayed trolley allows a father and son to reconnect over the memories of Saturday morning cartoons.
Jeff Savage and David Macharelli helm this featured episode hearkening back to when Saturday mornings were meant for a bowl of cereal and cartoons on the television. The story is really a contemplation about “time”. Starting out the second half of our inaugural season of audio-theater, Nutmeg Junction presents an episode that takes the anthology series to a different level.
Directed by Jandi Hanna (her prior directorial work for the show was episode 18 “Battle of Elsenorift”) this talented cast all have moments in the spotlight.
Of particular interest for this show is the music. Robert C. Fullerton, the official troubadour of Nutmeg Junction show, creates a special theme for Packy-Dermy-Poo, our miniature Elephant mystery.
Kurt Boucher created an ode to tort law the way “schoolhouse’ style public service announcements might present the topic with contributions by Lana Peck and Nicole Boucher.
Lana Peck and Mik Walker’s 1998 “Jellybean Stomp” was the perfect theme for the SNARFLEPOOFS!
And apologies all around to anyone who has the “Snarfleday Song” still stuck in their heads. It was created and performed on guitar by J. Timothy Quirk and sung by the whole cast.
Regarding the main story:
Jake and his father speak with an understanding of the other’s knowledgebase and not everything said is spoken with words. During rehearsal we discussed where the father was going and why and the performance by Jeff Savage and David Macharelli demonstrated deep insight into the characters. As the writer, I’m incredibly proud of this piece and thrilled it came to life the way it did.
Regarding Snarflepoofs 1 and 2
It seemed there was a time when cartoons were created specifically to sell a line of toys. I won’t go into specific names. But whenever there was a large troupe of characters in a cartoon, it was usually (it seemed) because they were selling figures of each character and the cartoon was completely secondary to that effort. The cartoons usually told some generic and forgettable “lesson” about “friendship” or “sharing” or “being nice”. I thought it would be funny if a cartoon was used to teach something a lot greater, like general philosophy. So that’s the idea of how Snaflepoofs was created. We make references to Rene Descartes (Day Cart says, “call me Cogito!” Plato (who wants to go into my cave and stare at the wall?” and Nietche (Sneetchey steals the show here-nice work by new addition to the team “Melissa Gabehart”)
The song for the holiday song just made me laugh. It’s three chords, generic and infectious. During editing I added in the jinglebells, then expanded the guitar-work to fit the narration so that at the end of each narrated segment, we came back to the refrain.
The largest segment of the show is Packy-Dermy-Poo, the homage to the “teen mystery solvers with an animal” genre. The story nearly wrote itself. I enjoyed immensely the idea of a character specifically named Redmond Herring (red herring). Packy Dermy Poo may be a one-off parody but I loved the laughter at the end and included it in the audio. It fits within the framework of the cartoon but it also demonstrates the fun we have creating Nutmeg Junction.
Mister Tort Law is wonderful, a creation from the mind of Kurt Boucher. I reached out to the musical cast members about what they wanted to create for the show, giving free reign. Kurt came up with the idea of teaching the concepts of torts in the PSA format. Fantastic. We may do an entire tort episode and base it in Winsted where the American Museum of Tort Law is located and we’ll use that song again.
We had a separate PSA that was non-musical and was a parody of the “ad for a TV disguised as a PSA but instead of saying a generic lesson, we taught Einstein’s law of relativity. It was a good idea but there was no time for it once the foley was added to the other segments during editing.
EPISODE 20: LOOKING FORWARD TO IT”
Written, created and produced by J. Timothy Quirk (c) 2018
recorded at WAPJ in Torrington, CT
Directed by Jandi Hanna
Starring Jeff Savage as Dad in the main story, Plato in Snarflepoofs, Redmond Herring in Packy Dermy Poo
David Macharelli as Jake in the main story, Day Cart in Snarflepoofs and Chuck in Packy Dermy Poo
Kurt Boucher as Mister Tortlaw, Renny in Snarflepoofs and Simon in Packy Dermy Poo
Nicole Boucher as Mister Tortlaw’s friend
Rich Cyr as Beau in Packy Dermy Poo
Mellisa Gabehart as the Passenger, as Sneetchey in Snarflepoofs
Jandi Hanna the narrator in Snarflepoofs and Professor Culpritt in Packy Dermy Poo
Lana Peck as Chum in Mister Tort Law, Princess Simone in Snarflepoofs and Val in Packy Dermy Poo
Olivia Wadsworth as Princess Wollstonecraft in Snarflepoofs and Kristine in Packy Dermy Poo