The 2013 Summer Season reaches rousing crescendo as “The Star Spangled Radio Hour” remembers the end of hostilities of the Second World War this Saturday, August 31. The broadcast includes highlights of the 100 minute Armed Forces Radio Service Special Command Performance “Victory Extra” in a fifty minute presentation of the rousing August 14, 1945 recording made at CBS in Hollywood.
Our host is none other than Bing Crosby. Ably assisted by announcer Ken Carpenter, Major Meredith Wilson and the AFRS Orchestra, Bing welcomes a long list of guests that includes Rise Stevens, Dinah Shore, Bette Davis, Jimmy Durante, Jose Iturbi, Lionel Barrymore, Marlene Dietrich, Burgess Meredith, Frank Sinatra, Rita Hayworth, Desi Arnaz, Ernie “Bubbles” Whitman, Ida Lupino, Ginger Rogers, Ruth Hussey, Claire Trevor, Don Wilson, Bill Mauldin, George Montgomery, John Conte, Jinx Falkenberg, Dianna Lewis, Ronald Coleman, The King Sisters, Cary Grant, Robert Montgomery, Col. Thomas H. A. Lewis, “G. I. Jill” Martha Wilkerson, Johnny Mercer, Herbert Marshall, Greer Garson and Orson Welles.
The recording is at times happy and reverent. This is a true time capsule that gives us evidence of what a relieved but proud nation felt at this historic moment. The military audience for whom this is intended would hear the transcriptions shortly via shortwave and around the world via the discs played on the worldwide AFRS station network that were flown everywhere by the Army Air Forces Air Transport Command.