Neil Verma’s work examines idiosyncratic and affective spaces in media history, often those whose eccentricity hinges on particularly interdisciplinary cultural turns. In Theater of the Mind: Imagination, Aesthetics, and American Radio Drama, Verma engages with an archive of over six-thousand radio play recordings—including those penned by Norman Corwin, Wyllis Cooper, and Lucille Fletcher—in order to build a case for the radio drama as one of the most defining forms of mid-twentieth-century genre fiction.
Most recently, Verma has been curating a series of web-based essays on the radio plays of Orson Welles at the Sound Studies blog, which will run until January 2014.
October 30, 2013, marks the seventy-fifth anniversary of “The War of the Worlds,” initially aired by Welles as an episode of The Mercury Theatre on the Air. To commemorate this, Verma will deliver a lecture and slideshow at the Music Box’s 35mm screening of Byron Haskin’s film War of the Worlds (1953) on October 27th and again at an airing of Welles’s original broadcast at Doc Films on October 29th.
On top of this, Verma will helm a nationwide (!) stream and response via social media (hashtag: #WOTW75) to the original recording, . . .