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"The Radiophonic Workshop first opened its doors in 1957. It started life as little more than an offshoot of the UK’s government funded BBC drama department, but over the next eighteen years grew to produce the innovative sounds and music that became synonymous with shows like ‘Dr Who’ and ‘The Human Body’. The workshop was formed at a time when sound technology was still in its infancy of props and tape reels. Little was known at the time about the embryonic medium and the BBC was even initially wary to hire composers in the long term for fear of their ongoing health. We talk to one such composer, Elizabeth Parker, worked on the cult sci-fi series ‘Blake 7’, amongst others, and recalls here with affection, the open attitude of her colleagues and experimentation with new methods. Unfortunately however it didn’t last and the subsequent cut in funding and increasing availability of technology such as synths, affected the Workshop’s vitality and viability to the BBC altogether, forcing it’s eventual closure in the 1990’s. The original recordings are now preserved for posterity, but the Radiophonic Workshop’s broader legacy is evident in the continual evolution of electronic music today."
*That analog tape-spliced stuff has a peculiar sonic weirdness that will probably never be recaptured. Guys spending a month in some state-supported media lab taping the sounds of corks coming out of bottles… It’s pretty easy to play medieval music on lutes and fifes but this 20th century stuff is physically unrepeatable. It can only be played not remade, and is lost to history in a way that music was never lost before