“Beautiful Radiant Things” is the story of the anarchist Emma Goldman’s 50th birthday in the Missouri State Penitentiary in 1919.

The musical drama features Laurel Hagen as Emma Goldman, Kya Marienfeld as the socialist Kate Richards O’Hare, Melissa Graciosa as convicted murderer Aggie the Lifer, Michele Johnson as thief Lulu Bibbs, Rachel Ann Kersch as counterfeiter Minnie Eddy, Haley Austin as prostitute Hester Campbell and Jenna Whetzel as drug dealer Lottie Funk. Erin Greenley is an understudy for all the roles. Doni Kiffmeyer will play the Warden.

Staged for radio, “Beautiful Radiant Things” will be performed at Star Hall on Saturday, Feb. 17, at 7 p.m., and on Sunday, Feb. 18, at 2 p.m. Tickets will be available at Back of Beyond Books, WabiSabi and KZMU, starting on Monday, Jan. 29.

Pianist Jessica Retka heads an orchestra featuring concertina player Miriam Graham, bassist Josie Kovash and Fiery Furnace Marching Band members Jeff Gutierrez on sax and Bobby Hollahan on trombone and tuba. Christian Wright will create sound effects on his Metal Thing.

The crew includes sound engineers Bob Owen and Dave Montgomery, stage manager Joanne Savoie, assistant Serah Mead, and director Marty Durlin, also the playwright.

This is the third year that Moab’s community radio station has presented live radio drama, performing at Star Hall and also airing episodes on KZMU. The first year’s offering, “Downtown Abbey,” received an Honorable Mention from the Firesign Theatre’s Mark Time Awards. “Downtown Abbey Season Two” included four local child actors.

The “Downtown Abbey” plays were satires inspired by Moab and the writings of Edward Abbey, while “Beautiful Radiant Things” is based on historical events of nearly 100 years ago.

A Russian Jew, Emma Goldman came to the United States at age 16, along with her sister Helena, fleeing poverty and a violent father. She found her way to Sachs Cafe in New York City, and discovered a group of radicals who inspired her and fired her anarchist fervor. Charismatic, provocative and quick-witted, she toured the country speaking about war, capitalism, free love, free speech, prisons, atheism, birth control, theater and homosexuality. She was deported in 1920 after her release from prison and returned to the U.S. only once, in 1933, for a brief speaking tour.

Goldman is perhaps best known for the statement, “I don’t want to be in your revolution if I can’t dance.”

The title of the play comes from another Goldman quote: “I want freedom, the right to self-expression, everybody’s right to beautiful, radiant things.”

For more information, contact Marty Durlin at KZMU at 435-259-8824.

For more information, contact Marty Durlin at KZMU at 435-259-8824.