The Black Mass 28: Disillusionment by Thomas Mann

Join us on Fri­day at a lit­tle after 12 noon or 4pm Pacif­ic time / 8pm or mid­night in the UK,  for anoth­er episode in the land­mark radio dra­ma series The Black Mass, cre­at­ed by the late Erik Bauers­feld and his col­leagues at the Paci­fi­ca radio sta­tion KPFA in Berke­ley, Cal­i­for­nia, over fifty years ago. In 30 chill­ing tales of mys­tery, imag­i­na­tion and the human mind, The Black Mass brings you some of literature’s most haunt­ing sto­ries, by mas­ters of the craft — many of whom are best-known in oth­er fields. Our thanks as always to John Whit­ing, pro­duc­er of many of these record­ings, and of course to Erik Bauers­feld him­self.

Note that the episode will not start until the track play­ing at the top of the hour has fin­ished, so the actu­al start time of the episode will be a few min­utes after the hour.

27 August: Disillusionment by Thomas Mann

Man 1: Bernard Mayes
Man 2: Erik Bauers­feld

Adapt­ed and Pro­duced by: Erik Bauersfeld

Two strangers sit at Florian’s Café on the Piaz­za de San Mar­co in Venice, Italy. Thomas Mann’s brief tale is about a search in life for some­thing that isn’t a dis­ap­point­ment. It also reveals the ori­gin of Peg­gy Lee’s pop­u­lar song: Is That all There Is. Most of the lyrics are tak­en, word for word, from Mann’s story.

First broad­cast on July 1, 1964. Length: 13:54

“Dis­il­lu­sion­ment” (“Ent­täuschung”) was writ­ten in 1896.

Length: 24:13

Wikipedia says of Thomas Mann:
Paul Thomas Mann (6 June 1875 – 12 August 1955) was a Ger­man nov­el­ist, short sto­ry writer, social crit­ic, phil­an­thropist, essay­ist, and the 1929 Nobel Prize in Lit­er­a­ture lau­re­ate. His high­ly sym­bol­ic and iron­ic epic nov­els and novel­las are not­ed for their insight into the psy­chol­o­gy of the artist and the intel­lec­tu­al. His analy­sis and cri­tique of the Euro­pean and Ger­man soul used mod­ern­ized ver­sions of Ger­man and Bib­li­cal sto­ries, as well as the ideas of Johann Wolf­gang von Goethe, Friedrich Niet­zsche, and Arthur Schopenhauer.

The Black Mass art­work was cre­at­ed by Ter­ry Lightfoot.