Leslie on the Radio: New Findings

The Radio page of this blog is still a work in progress. Since I have created it, I have found several new pieces of information and discovered new broadcasts I knew nothing about.

In 1932, Leslie Howard appeared on a Sunday broadcast sponsored by Yardley and Co. This is a description of the broadcast published in Radio Guide, for the week of February 14-20, before Leslie became the protagonist:

The London String Quartet, one of the outstanding chamber music organizations of the world, Beatrice Hereford. international monologist, and Katherine Bacon, distinguished English pianist, will all be heard this Sunday on the first of a series of programs to be presented over an NBC network each Sunday at 1:00 p.m. The series is sponsored by Yardley and Co. Ltd.
Mischa Levitski, celebrated American pianist, will appear on the program the following week and every second week subsequently.
Miss Hereford was one of the first American actresses to popularize her form of entertainment. She writes her own monologues. and her portraits of a New England seamstress, a book-keeper, a Boston shop-girl, a fussy old lady, and scores of others have brought her success in the theater and on the concert platform.

Leslie Howard

Leslie Howard in “Silver Screen”, July 1932

Leslie’s appearances on the Yardley program I have found in newspapers and magazines are the following:

  • 27 March, 2:00–Leslie Howard, monologist;
  • 10 April, 2:05–Leslie Howard, actor; Mischa Levitski, piano
  • 17 April, 2:00–Leslie Howard, actor; London String Quartet
  • 24 April, 2:00–Leslie Howard, actor; London String Quartet
  • 1st May, 2:00–Leslie Howard, actor; London String Quartet
  • 8 May, 2:00–Leslie Howard, actor; London String Quartet

Another exciting discovery were the Leslie Howard’s Sunday Matinées, a series of radio dramatizations broadcast on the  WCAU-WABC-CBS channel in 1936. I was able to reconstruct the full schedule:

  • January 5: Her Cardboard Lover by Jacques Deval
  • January 12: The Admirable Crichton by James M. Barrie
  • January 19: (postponed because the network broadcast the address by President Roosevelt at dedication of Theodore Roosevelt Memorial)
  • January 26: There’s Always Juliet by John Van Druten with Anne Grey
  • February 2: The Guardsman by Ferenc Molnar
  • February 9: Murray Hill by Leslie Howard
  • February 16: Journey’s End by R.C. Sheriff
  • February 23: Springtime for Henry by Benn W. Levy
  • March 1: (postponed because of Leslie’s illness)
  • March 8:  a radio version of The Scarlet Pimpernel
  • March 15: a radio version of Raffles
  • March 22: Just Suppose by E.A. Thomas
  • March 29: The Second Man by S.N. Behrman

I could not find recordings of these broadcasts anywhere, but I am not despairing. Miracles sometimes happen.