All Request Radio

Velvet, a Black autistic queer person of a certain age, holds a microphone to their mouth in their right hand and uses their left hand like a satellite dish to hear audience responses. The blue and purple stage lights complement Velvet's warm (skin and psychic) tones

DJ Velvet Painting (The Velvet Duke) works a daring job at CKVD 995 FM — a radio station where the DJ sings the Top 10 songs that the audience and DJ discover together at the same time; the DJ won’t know the song titles or music ahead of time. As one of the few humans left in the industry, DJ Velvet Painting has held onto their job because they fulfill CRTC mandates for Canadian content and diversity. Will they keep their job or will ChatGPT claim that role too? The audience just might be the deciding vote

“Imagine your Spotify Top Artists decided like Family Feud!”

While it’s an improvised musical comedy show, the gentle audience engagement occurs at the top of the show. Specifically, the show starts after the audience submits made up song titles through an online form. They won’t be made to sing along, but they might want to anyway!

“All Request Radio” Trailer (1m25)

“Playing Your Favourite Made-up Songs”

In Person: Ottawa Fringe Festival

Join the premiere of “All Request Radio” on location for eight (8) performances at Arts Court (Atelier Studio) as part of the Ottawa Fringe Festival (June 15-25, 2023) #AllRequestRadio

Tickets now available

Black Out Night (Wednesday, June 21): The evening performance of All Request Radio will be the first Black Out Night for Velvet Duke Productions. Following in Jeremy O. Harris’ tradition, a Black Out Night is an invitation, communion, and celebration of Black audiences and Black productions. As with every show in the Ottawa Fringe Festival, all audiences are welcome at the Black Out Night performance

All Request Radio - June 15-25 Ottawa Fringe Festival Tickets & Schedule Program Song Request
All Request Radio – June 15-25 Ottawa Fringe Festival – Tickets & Schedule – Program – Song Request

All performances will have ASL-English Interpretation by Katherine A. Sibun (except 17/6/23) and machine automated captioning. Read the other audience care and access measures. Digital Program (Mobile-friendly, PDF) now available

Performance DateTimePerformance DateTime
Thursday, June 158:30 pmWednesday, June 218:30 pm
Friday, June 166:00 pmThursday, June 2211:00 pm
Saturday, June 174:00 pmFriday, June 237:00 pm
Sunday, June 185:00 pmSaturday, June 249:00 pm
All times in Eastern Daylight Time
City of Ottawa logo. Ottawa wordmark in a light blue; the capital O has three light green spirals originating at the bottom left and arcing toward the middle top of the letter

Velvet Duke Productions gratefully acknowledges the financial support of the City of Ottawa

“All Request Radio is a light-hearted musical”

Grace Kim-Shin, The Fulcrum

“All Request Radio” Frequently Asked Questions

Velvet Wells built the “All Request Radio” format for (one to many) musical improvisors of varying experience levels to come together and enjoy music

Is “All Request Radio” truly improvised?

The audience makes up the song titles at the beginning of the show. The selected “Top 10 Countdown” titles are randomly selected through programming. Neither the stage manager, technician, nor myself influence the selection or order

Once we all discover the song titles, at the same time, I will generate song lyrics on the spot

While I compiled the library of over 200 pre-recorded musical tracks, specific show playlists are randomly created and unknown to me until each song starts playing

How do you practice for the show?

I pick musical tracks that aren’t part of the show catalogue and: a) perform guest sets on other people’s shows, b) perform a shortened version of the show on Highwire Improv’s channel, c) I practice singing and songwriting techniques

Have you ever sung the same song twice?

Before I expanded my music catalogue, I’d heard the same musical track more than once. The lyrical content was different each time

How did you develop this improvised musical format?

Visit the ARR history page for the festivals and shows that were part of the journey

I could never do that. Could I?

Absolutely, if you’re open to trying! I run workshops on the show format and will run advanced workshops on specific musical genres

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