Actress Alexandra Halic played innumerable parts in radio plays across the decades
Actress Alexandra Halic played innumerable parts in radio plays, and is now of the best loved actors in children's theater. She has been playing memorable parts at the Ion Creanga children's theater in Bucharest since the early 1960s. She played characters such as Exupery's The Little Prince, Lewis Carroll's Alice, Pinocchio, David Copperfield, Pantalone from Turandot, and the Glass-imp in Hauff's Heart of Stone. Her collaboration with public radio started in 1961, when she started starring in several regular features for children, such as 'Professor Know-it-all', 'Good Morning, Children', and 'Stories for Children'. Recently she starred in yet more memorable productions, this time in the radio play format for kids, such as Tolstoy's Burattino, 'The Magic Whistle', by Victor Eftimiu, 'Heart', by de Amicis, 'The Lord of Earth, Waters, and the Skies', also by Eftimiu. We asked Alexandrina Halic to tell us about her early years in radio theater, and what radio has meant to her:
“I am grateful to radio because it has carefully preserved in its golden archives all the wonderful things that happened back then. I am not referring only to the radio shows I acted in, I am talking about all the famous voices, all the wonderful voices to be found in the archive of the Radio Broadcasting Corporation. Even now there are radio theater programs that I am sure younger or older listeners still listen to with great pleasure. And I remember all the great directors I had the privilege to work with. Radio gathered all the wonderful voices, wonderful actors from Bucharest theaters, guided by directors that I never forgot in my 60 years of radio. Maybe listeners of a certain age remember Mihai Zora, Mihail Pascal, Paul Stratilat, Val Moldoveanu, Cristian Munteanu, Dan Puican, Titel Constantinescu, directors that have left their imprint on the history of radio theater. I would also like to mention the directors that I have recently worked with, Mihai Lungeanu and Gavriil Pinte, and I apologize if I left some of them out. It was a great opportunity for me back then, when I started my acting career, it was the encounter with wonderful actors that I had heard before my career in radio theater, but I had not imagined that I would see in person, in a studio, in front of a microphone. I am thinking of Fory Etterle, Clody Bertola, Gina Patrichi, Mircea Albulescu, Victor Rebengiuc.”
Alexandra Halic's voice, along with the illustrations by artist Alexandru Ciubotariu, contributes to the success of the audiobook 'The Books of Apolodor', by Gellu Naum, produced by Radio Romania's publishing house. It is a famous book for children telling the adventures of Apolodor, the penguin from Labrador, and his sidekicks, Amedeu the Lion and Ilie the Kangaroo. It was published for the first time in 1964, in an edition with illustrations by the author himself. Here is Alexandra Halic in an interview on the occasion of the latest World Radio Day:
“Apolodor is one of the great loves of my life. The collaboration with radio, started as a young woman, was beneficial for me as an actress. It was an opportunity for me also because there is quite a difference between radio theater and brick and mortar theater. As opposed to the stage, in front of the microphone all you have to work with is your voice. When all the other points of support that create illusion in traditional theater are missing, such as set, costumes, other visible actors, the only instrument you have left to convey emotion is your voice. Working with my voice helped me a great lot in stage theater. How could I not be grateful to radio for all the things it has given me? I wish radio a long life to come on this, its day.”
The UNITER award for lifetime achievement, the special award for her role as Pinocchio, received at the Piatra Neamt National Festival, and the Faithful Service National Order in Rank of Knight granted by the Romanian Presidency are just some of the distinctions that Alexandrina Halic was bestowed for the roles she interpreted in children's radio plays.