Norman Corwin: His Early Life and Radio Career, 1910–1950
By Wayne Soini
Called “The Poet Laureate of Radio” by critics, Norman Corwin was the top writer at CBS when CBS reigned supreme in radio, and when radio itself dominated public attention. This biography tells the story of Norman’s unlikely rise from a triple-decker tenement on Bremen Street in East Boston to the top rung of radio writers during the Golden Age of Radio. A self-taught writer who never graduated from high school, he learned what audiences craved, and he gave it to them. His nuanced “theater of the mind” dramas, tender love stories, and witty comedies were hits talked about long after they were broadcast, and, when his scripts were published, became bestsellers. The week after Pearl Harbor, Norman’s show “We Hold These Truths” was broadcast to the largest radio audience ever. His V-E Day broadcast on May 8, 1945, “On a Note of Triumph,” made a similarly enduring mark and still constitutes the gold standard for wartime drama.