Frank William Boreham 1871-1959

Frank William Boreham 1871-1959
A photo F W Boreham took of himself in 1911

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Boreham on Radio

On the Wings of Radio
During his retirement (1930) F W Boreham conducted a short-term ministry at Sydney’s Pitt Street Congregational Church. Howard Crago (Boreham’s biographer) says:

It was from the Pitt Street pulpit that the Doctor's voice was first carried out on the wings of radio. This new medium he revelled in exploiting to the full. In the course of each broadcast he would send "loving greetings to all listening at Kew"-where the family would always be gathered around the radio when their father was on the air. Most touching of all the letters of appreciation which flowed in from listeners was the one from Mosgiel, where members of his old congregation met after their own service-New Zealand time being two hours ahead of Sydney's-to listen to his.

Radio Series
In the year 1934 F W Boreham began a series of fortnightly biographical sketches in the Christian World, under the general title of My Study Chair: A Glance Round My Shelves. This series, alternating with the fortnightly essays, was to continue for the next ten years. Most of them had already appeared as leaders in the Mercury. But each of these literary portraits was carefully re-touched before its second exhibition in other columns. Later, scores of the same articles were to appear, again slightly refashioned, as a fortnightly series in the Melbourne Age Literary Supplement. A selection of them was made this year when the Australian Broadcasting Commission invited their author to broadcast from their Victorian studios a series of literary talks, and he chose Literary Ladies.

Shut the Door!
At the age of eighty F.W.B. acceded to the Australian Broadcasting Commission's request to record six short talks for transmission in its nightly Meditation session: the first of numerous series over the next few years. This whole series, which he entitled My Easy Chair, were recorded in the A.B.C. studios at one sitting.

F.W.B. afterwards chuckled many a time over an incident which occurred on this occasion. The studio control-room technician had signalled that all was ready when, "Shut that door!" shouted the speaker's voice from the monitor. Almost before the next sentence could be uttered, the operator burst into the studio. He was sorry, he said, but Dr. Boreham's command to someone to shut the door had been inadvertently recorded, so he must begin again. The broadcaster then had to explain to the embarrassed operator that the realistically declaimed "Shut that door!" was the opening sentence of his talk on Shutting the Door!

Source: T Howard Crago, The Story of F W Boreham London: Marshall, Morgan and Scott, 1961), 216, 220, 246.

Image: ABC Logo.