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University students shine in “It's A Wonderful Life: A Live Radio Play”


This Christmas, wwudrama produced a holiday play titled “It's a Wonderful Life: A Live Radio Play.” The show, with five performances throughout early December, was a retelling of the classic holiday movie in the form of a 1940s-style live radio broadcast. 

The unique performance style created more focus on the actors voices and facial features than on movement acting. The six cast members played voice actors on a radio show, each tasked with portraying multiple characters from “It’s A Wonderful Life.” 

To bring to life a radio play, wwudrama included a sound effects table maintained by Craig Connell, functional analyst for Academic Records. The audience was intrigued by the sounds he was able to make using everyday objects. A few examples included scratching a horse brush on a metal casserole dish to illustrate train wheels on a track and a bucket of water and a toilet plunger to illustrate splashing ice water.

Through a different style of acting and a foley artist for sound effects, wwudrama provided a new take on a classic holiday movie that was well received by both students and community members. 

Walla Walla University provides many such opportunities for students to develop other talents outside of academics. “I really enjoy theater and I’ve always wanted to expand my circle of interests. This is one of the outlets I had at my disposal,” says Egan SchmidtWeiss, a senior bioengineering major. SchmidtWeiss played leading character George Bailey and enjoyed working with his castmates. “To me the joy of the theater is the people I get to work with,” said SchmidtWeiss.

Wwudrama is open to community members, alumni, and university students. The next production is Moliere’s classic comedy, “The Misanthrope.” Auditions will be held January 3 and 4 from 7–9 pm in the Black Box, room 119, in the Canaday Technology Center.  

To learn more about the upcoming drama productions, visit

Posted Jan. 9, 2023

Picture of Egan SchmidtWeiss playing George Bailey
Six cast members of "Its A Wonderful Life: A Live Radio Play"
"On Air" sign