rand’s esoteric otr

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The Story Princess - Pgm 2

July 24th, 2009

"The Story Princess" was a series created by Alene Dalton for a local Salt Lake City radio station in the early 1950s.  She left for New York in 1953 and the program appears to have been picked up by the ABC network.  It's shown as being carried on WABC in this program log.  In digging around the web, I've run into some merchandising associated with the show, including one or more books with a "Story Princess" theme and toys associated with the program.

transcription label

In this entry, program 2 in the "Story Princess" series as broadcast by the Armed Forces Radio and Television Network.  In this previously lost program, the Story Princess performs "Snow White" and we also hear a Little Orley story where he gets himself a cricket.  The show is dated July 25, 1958 in the matrix of the disc and was probably carried on ABC.

I warn you - this may be a previously undocumented old time radio series and that can be exciting, but the program itself is quite dreadful.  Everything about is canned, prerecorded, and prepackaged, even down to the chatter of the kids.  Perhaps earlier efforts by the Story Princess broadcast during radio's better days had a little more life about them.

Any one else heard another episode of this show or seen anything else about the series?

The program was transferred from an original AFRTS vinyl microgroove transcription.

Update, 7/25/09 - See Jim B's remarks in the comments section.  He found an article from the Long Beach Independent dated October 4, 1958 where the show premiered on KABC.  He also notes the last show on the station was March 5, 1960 and has some other information on Alene Dalton.

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  • Erica

    Actually, it’s not all THAT bad… as long as you happen to be a child under 10, :)

    My daughter (five) listened to this one pretty avidly. I thought she wasn’t interested at all initially, and then she asked what was up with the dwarf’s names, which don’t match Disney’s version… so I guess she WAS listening after all.

    Jul 24, 2009 at 6:18 pm
  • Jim B.

    I listened to the show and thought “I wonder if any kids got confused because there are no singing, Disney-named dwarves.” Then I read Erica’s comments and laughed.

    About the show, the Long Beach Independent of Saturday, October 4, 1958 has the answer:

    “The Story Princess,” starring Alene Dalton and featuring songs and stories for the youngsters, returns to the air at 6 p.m. today on radio station KABC. The series was a popular venture a number of years ago, and Miss Dalton’s skill in writing and telling children’s stories has received much acclaim. She is a child psychologist. “Snow While and the Seven Dwarfs” will be the first offering, highlighted by Miss Dalton’s original songs.

    The last show on KABC was March 5, 1960, though I don’t know if it was in reruns or still in first run at that point.

    The earlier series was the Johnny Olsen-hosted “Red Goose Kiddie Spectacular” (ABC) on which she appeared in 1956.

    Her original, 15-minute show on KSL ran as far back as April 1947.

    Here’s a link to a feature story in the Salt Lake Tribune, http://www.spaceprogramarchive.com/Viewer.aspx?img=99296710

    She died June 4, 1986. Here’s a link to her obit: http://www.spaceprogramarchive.com/Viewer.aspx?img=31058538

    The other tidbit of information is that she was on the first championship team of the Latter Day Saints girls basketball league in Salt Lake in 1939.

    Jul 25, 2009 at 12:36 am
  • Nemo

    At first it seemed odd that this was on AFRS, but I suppose it was for children of service members. Even so, I can’t help but imagine some guy who has just put in a long day’s work at some isolated base returning to the barracks and turning on the radio hoping for some music or a hard-boiled mystery drama and picking up this instead.

    Jul 29, 2009 at 8:53 pm