FinalRune producer Fred Greenhalgh is groggily returning from Minneapolis, where he’s just spent an incredible weekend at CONvergence 2012, Minnesota’s largest sci-fi/fantasy convention with over 5,000 estimated attendees.
The occasion was to attend the Mark Time and Ogle awards ceremony, where FinalRune’s 2011 show, Intensive Care by James Comtois (co-produced with Aural Stage Studios) won the Gold Ogle Award. This marks FinalRune’s second Gold Ogle; Aural Stage previously won an Honorable Mention for their show 1918. We also won the 2010 Silver Mark Time Award for our pilot of The Cleansed.
Making this year particularly special were guests of honor from The Firesign Theatre. Phil Proctor and David Ossman gave out the awards (after hamming a gut-busting play by Great Northern Audio Theatre in the live Mark Time radio show). Other audio folks in attendance included Clayton Faits and Jeffrey Gardner from Our Fair City, Rob Taylor and Jack Bowman of The Wireless Theatre Company, Scott Hickey of The Grist Mill and Dieter Zimmerman of Protophonic, all the way from Cape Town, South Africa!
The late Peter Bergman of Firesign Theatre had planned to attend, and his absence was the subject of two different panels, where his humor, absurdity, and mysticism-searching soul were celebrated with laughter and tears. A series of cosmic coincidences landed the Firesigns on the amazing trajectory they tread, and today their legacy lives on with a growing number of play adaptations and scriptbooks to accompany their classic studio albums. All kind of amazing stuff can be found at: firesigntheatre.com. Also don’t miss a very special exclusive interview we captured at the CON – it’s in the latter half of this week’s Radio Drama Revival podcast: http://www.radiodramarevival.com/episode-286-dialed-in-convergence-2012/
We had a great time at the 2011 CONvergence convention and this year was just as extraordinary an experience. In the world of audioland you can sometimes feel like you’re out on your own little island, and while many of us communicate online there are precious few opportunities for face-to-face gatherings.
The Mark Time and Ogle Awards have turned into a little nexus of the most imaginative new audio drama being created. The face-to-face time has lead to all sorts of interesting international collaborations – not the least of which is Intensive Care itself, which came to be mainly because we met Aural Stage Studios at the con in 2011. And now Aural Stage is working on sound design for The Cleansed – and who knows what other great opportunities will lay in the future?
Congratulations again to all the winners, and here’s to another great year of excellent audio productions ahead of us.