“I have always wanted to be a story teller of some kind,” John Couch said. “As a child I wanted to make movies and write books.” A junior Bible major with a minor in broadcasting, Couch already has a good bit of experience as a storyteller. He made award-winning short films in high school.
This year introduced him to another medium for story telling: radio. “I was coming back to campus from home (Fayetteville, Ark.),” he said, “and just happened to listen to an episode of ‘The Twilight Zone.’” Coincidentally, he was enrolled in Forrest Doddington’s Radio Production and Copywriting class. An idea was born.
He would write and produce a radio drama. Although older than television and film, radio was to Couch “a new, exciting medium.” He created “The Adventures of William Bradford, Episode 1,” writing the script, casting it, recording and editing it for his class project.
The 20-minute episode aired on the campus radio station, WFHU 91.5, last semester and then was re-aired this semester. The drama won first place in a competition sponsored by the National Broadcasting Society—Alpha Epsilon Rho. The award was presented March 24 at the national convention in New York City.
The radio drama deals with a 1920’s era adventurer/archaeologist who struggles to find an ancient tomb in the rocky plains of Egypt. An evil villain has also found the tomb and intends to get his hands on the treasure within. A second episode is currently in production with a third being planned.
Five students provide the voice talent for the drama: Rip Elliott, Bradley Field, Hannah Danner, Sam Glover, and Josh Perry.
“I fell in love with telling a story through sound,” Couch said. “What people love about radio is it has ‘better pictures’ because each person gets to imagine his own.” A benefit for the producer, he said, was that it is “easier to pull off a high quality production by yourself.” Each actor recorded his or her lines separately; Couch combined and edited them and added sound effects.
The desire to tell stories, for Couch, is unabated. His career goal is to make inspirational films. “Christians need be in the world of media,” he said. “Dirtiness in film has become a fad; I think we could bring back cleanness as a fad.”
“The Adventures of William Bradford” can be found on Couch’s Facebook page.