This week on From The Vault, KPFK Arts In Review host Julio Martinez presents original productions of two holiday classics: O. Henry’s The Gift of The Magi and Dylan Thomas’s A Child’s Christmas In Wales. We also showcase a new radio production sure to be a classic called The Nutcracker’s Journey, featuring the Arts in Review Repertory Players, about the interesting story of the creation of The Nutcracker Ballet, a project Tchaikovsky never wanted to do.
Julio Martinez, the creative force behind these radio productions, began his work at Pacifica in 1967 hosting an improvisation children’s program on KPFA in Berkeley, California. In 1968 he moved to Los Angeles and today is the host of KPFK’s weekly program on the arts (Arts in Review). Over many years Julio has teamed up with Al Alu, his colleague from San Francisco, and an array of talented actors and musicians in Los Angeles to produce a series of holiday radio specials (three of which are featured today). This program also contains a rare live in studio performance with Julio Martinez and Al Jarreau from a 1968 recording in Studio A at KPFK Los Angeles.