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“ON A NOTE OF TRIUMPH” selected into the National Recording Registry

April 15, 2022 8:39 am Category: Articles about Norman Corwin, Home Comments Off on “ON A NOTE OF TRIUMPH” selected into the National Recording Registry A+ / A-

On April 13, 2022, the Library of Congress National Recording Registry announced that it had selected “On a Note of Triumph” as one of the 25 significant sound recordings to be preserved in 2022. Also included are in the induction are WNYC’s coverage on 9/11, FDR complete presidential speeches, Hank Aaron’s 715th home run, and music from Nat King Cole, Duke Ellington, Queen, Journey, Alicia Keys and others. (view the press release here)

From their NRR website:

Under the terms of the National Recording Preservation Act of 2000, the Librarian of Congress, with advice from the National Recording Preservation Board, selects 25 titles each year that are “culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant” and are at least 10 years old.

“On a Note of Triumph” (May 8, 1945)

Writer Norman Corwin’s radio tribute to the Bill of Rights, “We Hold These Truths,” was heard by the largest radio audience to date in December of 1941, a people searching for affirmation in the wake of their country’s entry into World War II. Three and a half years later, “On a Note of Triumph,” his salute to the Allied victory in Europe, aired the evening of V-E Day, May 8, 1945. An enormous audience tuned in again, and an encore performance aired five days later and was issued as a record album. The script of the program was rushed into bookstores within a week of the first performance. The 60-minute production was anchored by the passionate narration of Martin Gabel, who led a sonic tour of the years leading up to the war, its battlefields, and the homes of ordinary people. The title aptly describes the program’s thunderous opening and proclamation of victory. The tone changes, however, and voices are heard asking questions like “what do we know now that we didn’t know before?” and “what do we do now?” Although not a subtle work, like its predecessor, “On a Note of Triumph” filled a deep need for its audience.

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