Re-Imagined Radio pays tribute to iconic radio voice of William Conrad

VANCOUVER, Wash. – William Conrad’s iconic radio voice defined two radio drama series, “Escape” and “Gunsmoke.” This month, Re-Imagined Radio pays tribute to Conrad with episodes from each of those popular series. The premier broadcast and live stream airs at 1 p.m. June 20 on KXRW-FM, Vancouver, and KXRY-FM, Portland. Subsequent broadcasts and streams will be provided by local, regional and international broadcast partners.

“Escape,” which is often called the finest radio adventure series ever broadcast, featured a wide range of stories—from science fiction to horror to murder mysteries—and aired from 1947 to 1954. Radio Re-Imagined has adapted “The Abominable Snowman” episode, set on Mount Everest and first broadcast in 1953.

“Gunsmoke” was one of the longest-running radio dramas and is often considered radio's last great dramatic series. It was broadcast over CBS from 1952 to 1961. Conrad played Marshal Matt Dillon keeping Dodge City under control in the 1880s. Radio Re-Imagined is featuring the episode “Bloody Hands” (1955), in which Marshal Dillon has grown weary of too much killing and fears he has lost his edge.

“It’s hard in one hour to pay proper tribute to the career of William Conrad,” said John Barber, faculty member of the Creative Media and Digital Culture Program at Washington State University Vancouver, and producer and host of Re-Imagined Radio. “But we believe these two radio programs are a good place to start.”

Re-imagined Radio premieres episodes on the third Monday of the month on KXRW-FM and KXRY-FM. In addition, every Sunday, an episode of Re-Imagined Radio is broadcast on KXRW only, drawing from previously broadcast episodes. Episodes can be streamed on demand from the Re-Imagined Radio website,

Community Partners

Re-Imagined Radio draws on community voice actors, Foley artists, musicians, sound artists and engineers. Partners include KXRW-FM, Marc Rose, Martin John Gallagher, Holly Slocum Design and Regina Carol Social Media Management. 

About Re-Imagined Radio

Re-Imagined Radio was begun by Barber in 2013 to celebrate radio storytelling. “We select, produce and perform classic and contemporary stories across a spectrum of radio genres, from dramas to comedies, from oral to aural histories, from documentaries to fictions, from soundscapes to sonic journeys, from radio to sound art,” Barber said. 

About WSU Vancouver

WSU Vancouver is in the homeland of Chinookan and Taidnapam peoples and the Cowlitz Indian Tribe. As one of six campuses of the WSU system, WSU Vancouver offers big-school resources in a small-school environment. The university provides affordable, high-quality baccalaureate- and graduate-level education to benefit the people and communities it serves. As the only four-year research university in Southwest Washington, WSU Vancouver helps drive economic growth through relationships with local businesses and industries, schools and nonprofit organizations. 

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Media Contact: Brenda Alling, Office of Marketing and Communications, 360-546-9601,

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