A Japanese radio station, Kamaishi Saigai FM, in the city of Kamaishi in Iwate Prefecture, has set a new Guinness World Record for a radio drama that played non-stop for over eight hours – the world’s longest nonstop live radio play. The drama was intended to give information about the 2011 earthquake and tsunami that devastated this coastal city, and encourage tsunami survivors.
An official representative delivered the Guinness World Records certificate to the Kamaishi office of the radio station on Jan. 23 for the “NISSAN A, Abe Reiji” drama. The radio program aired in December of last year, and ran for 8 hours, 23 minutes and 31 seconds. It was initially broadcast by a temporary radio station set up in April 2011 in the aftermath of the disaster. “I feel good that we conveyed the plight of Kamaishi to the nation and around the world,” said Kaori Ichikawa, a 42-year-old radio personality who works at the station.
The record-breaking drama was produced as an extended version of an original 55-minute series that was previously broadcast on Tokyo FM. The story tells of the life of an average corporate “salaryman” named “Abe Reiji”, the name of the lead character itself a wordplay on the English word “average”. A total of seven main radio voice actors acted as the primary characters in the show. The program also included guest performances by Iwate Governor Takuya Tasso, among others. The Kawaishi radio broadcaster joined forces with Tokyo FM Broadcasting Co., FM Iwate Broadcasting Co. and other broadcast groups in this record-breaking effort.