Revisiting the golden age of radio to gain skills and perspective for the modern age

Staff Reporter

PALMER RAPIDS – Although the golden age of radio went from approximately 1936-1947, there is still plenty we can learn from this medium. In fact, rediscovering the treasury of content produced for radio can be an excellent way to give some perspective on the modern world and to develop precious skills that currently are in high demand.

The art of storytelling has been an important part of human communication since our early days sitting around the campfire. Today, the skill of storytelling is being found in many job descriptions as a growing number of companies see its value in conveying their key message. Whether it is through oral storytelling on podcasts, or written storytelling in emails and newsletters, the digital world for all of its technological advancements, is creating a demand for one of the oldest forms of communication – a good gripping story that will keep people engaged.

Fortunately, like other skills, you can learn to tell a good story through practice and exposure to quality content. For symbolism, nothing beats the Bible stories and the classics. When content has been passed down for millennia, it is safe to say that there is some enduring quality found in these works. The Russian novels are perfect for learning about character development and from the Victorian novels one can learn a lot about sentence structure and plot. However, in addition to these great works, there are some works of more humble origin that pack a wallop of a punch and can help improve your ability to tell a good story. Nothing beats classic radio for a crash course in storytelling.

Content written for radio during its heyday took on many forms and quickly developed many dependable motifs that audiences loved. Comedy, drama, suspense or news and variety shows each had their own style of storytelling that kept people tuning in week after week and sometimes nightly to hear the next instalment. Fortunately, many of the best examples of each of these genres are still available and finding new audiences decades later.

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