Newspaper article Evansville Courier & Press (2007-Current)

'See' It All on the Radio ; Past Local Broadcast Personality Stars in 'Miracle'

Newspaper article Evansville Courier & Press (2007-Current)

'See' It All on the Radio ; Past Local Broadcast Personality Stars in 'Miracle'

Article excerpt

Steve Migdon was a local radio personality known as Steve O'Bryan when he made his Evansville Civic Theatre debut, performing in Neil Simon's "The Good Doctor." Thirty-seven years, a few cities and one major career change later, Migdon returns to Civic Theatre as a physician's assistant to play Santa in a radio show version of "Miracle on 34th Street."

More specifically, he plays Kriss Kringle, the charismatic figure put on trial for claiming to be the bearded benefactor of children around the world in this staged, radio show adaptation of director George Seaton's 1947 movie version of Valentine Davies' modern Christmas fable.

Migdon returned to Evansville this year to rekindle a personal relationship, he said, "but I would be lying to say Civic Theatre wasn't part of the reason I came back."

He returned in September, and had begun working with Deaconess Hospital's hospitalist group when he saw the audition notice for "Miracle on 34th Street - the Radio Play."

"It's one of my favorite movies of all time," Migdon said. "And I love the Kriss Kringle part."

Edmund Gwenn's performance a Kringle won him an Oscar for the part.

At 62, he's aged into the role. Migdon still remembers the film performance, but, "I'm trying to do it as Steve Migdon would do it, not Steve Migdon playing Edmund Gwenn," he said.

Migdon left broadcasting in the 1990s to become a physician's assistant, his profession for the past 17 years. He never worked on the kind of vintage studio depicted in guest director Tom Angermeier's Civic Theatre production, but his two decades in radio and television at stations across the country have helped shape his performance, and those of others who have asked for help in the show, he said.

Some of them are too young to remember, but several cast members knew him as Steve O'Bryan during radio stints at WGBF and WIKY and television work on Channel 25 and Channel 14. He also broadcast as Steve Frame, briefly, on WJPS. The Lancaster, Penn., native worked at all those places over several years in Evansville, performing in a number of Civic Theatre shows along the way. …

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