WFYI’s Butch Slaughter and Kyle Long spotlight Recorder’s Xmas Show


The award winning  Echoes of Indiana Avenue show recently  explored the Indianapolis Recorder's midnight Christmas benefit concerts at the Walker Theatre.

Posts WFYI producer Kyle Long, “These concerts ran from midnight to 6 a.m. and featured as many as 60 acts on stage - including fire-eaters, snake handlers, drag queens, burlesque dancers, comedians, funk bands, jazz players, and rock & roll stars - all coming together to raise money for families in need.

“The midnight Christmas shows developed from the Indianapolis Recorder Cheer Fund. Established in 1929, the Cheer Fund was an annual holiday fundraiser that supported families in financial need. During the 1930s the Cheer Fund evolved into a benefit concert. These concerts attracted star performers, including the legendary tap dancer Bill “Bojangles” Robinson who performed at the Recorder’s 1938 benefit show. The Recorder's midnight Christmas benefit concerts thrived until the 1980s.

Listen to interviews with Indianapolis musicians and media personalities who performed at the Christmas benefit shows, including: Henry Hinch, Josephine Cheatham, Rodney Stepp, Reggie Gammon, Debbie Nelson, Tyrone Caldwell, Richard Hamilton, Eunice Trotter, Geno Shelton and the late Joe Trotter.”

You can hear this exciting program narrated by Butch Slaughter at:

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