PlayME proves international success of Canadian radio drama

Series enters its second season with a Nicolas Billon hit

Last year Expect Theatre launched a national digital theatre with PlayME, which offers Canadian stage works in weekly serialized podcast form.

One of multiple styles of on-demand entertainment, its success has been remarkable.

Artistic directors Laura Mullin and Chris Tolley already had some live-theatre cred, notably Romeo/Juliet Remixed, set in a modern club, with the audience in the middle of the action.

PlayME’s first season began with Nicolas Billon’s Next Stage show Agamemnon, followed by Andrea Scott’s Better Angels, Anna Chatterton’s Quiver, Rose Napoli’s Dr. Mr. Wells, Dwayne Morgan’s Grade 8, Norman Yeung’s Theory, Rosamund Small’s Vitals and short stories by Ontario writers.

And the results, in terms of listenership?

The site is charting on iTunes and has reached as high as #20 for performing arts podcasts globally it’s also on iTunes’ hot list. Some 1,000 people from 80 countries listen to PlayME daily.

The second season premiered with Billon’s SummerWorks show Iceland, featuring the original cast: Kawa Ada, Claire Calnan and Christine Horne.

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