1937 Czech dramatization of White Fang restored in time for radio centenary

Photo: Magdalena Hrozínková, Radio Prague International

Until recently, it was thought that the oldest full-length radio play preserved in the Czech Radio archives was from after the Second World War. But that changed thanks to a chance discovery of a Czech adaptation for radio of Jack London’s 1906 novel White Fang, which though in a very poor condition, was restored and digitised.

The recordings of the play were discovered in the radio archives around 12 years ago by Miloslav Turek, and at first they appeared unusable. They were bent out of shape from years of being stored incorrectly, as Turek explains.

“I found them in a box, but they were in so bad a state that it wasn’t possible to play the whole thing from beginning to end. You could only play parts of it. So I unpacked them from their original packaging, put them on a hard surface, and weighed them down with the heaviest boxes I could find.”

And almost miraculously – and as if just in time for the centenary of Czech Radio – they evened out over time, allowing the recording to be played once again.

See the rest here.

Authors: Anna Fodor, Magdalena Hrozínková