From Publishers Weekly
This marvelously entertaining audio dramatization will appeal to fans of noir mysteries, old-time radio plays and 1940s swing music. Musician Katy Green is between gigs when she runs into her ex-boyfriend, songwriter Ted Nywatt, at an amusement park, along with the members of the all-girl swing band, the Ultra Belles, he has formed to showcase his songs. As they talk, the Ultra Belles' violinist is suddenly pushed off the pier by an unknown assailant. With the violinist out of commission, Ted asks Katy to take her place for the Ultra Belles' upcoming tour. From there, the action is fast and furious as, one by one, the Ultra Belles and their entourage are murdered. The audio production is excellent, with appropriate sound effects enhancing the settings without ever distracting from the story. Best of all is the authentic-sounding 1940s swing music, performed by Ann Hampton Callaway backed by a studio band. The entire cast acts superbly; especially convincing are Susan Egan as earnest, intelligent Katy; Simon Jones as the band's unflappable British publicist; Barbara Rosenblat as drunken Suzanne and Ann Meisels as defiant Jack, the tomboyish Communist member of the group. Fans of inventive audio drama will be thrilled to discover that this adaptation is merely the first installment in an original series of Katy Green mysteries. (Sept.)
Copyright 2000 Reed Business Information, Inc.
This audio theater program will delight listeners who love swing music. In the '40s, musician Katy Green fills in with an all-girl swing band, the Ultra Belles. As trains clickety-clack up the West Coast, Katy tries to get in sync with this dynamic group, but one band member after another meets an unfortunate end. More than a dozen actors take part in this fun revival piece; Simon Jones as the band's agent is particularly strong, and Ann Hampton Callaway's songs are a treat. Several songs are repeated in full at the end of the tape. It's a strong start for new publisher Audio-Playwrights, with careful attention to detail, music, and sounds effects. The less than compelling mystery underneath is all but forgiven. R.F.W. Â© AudioFile 2000, Portland, Maine