ROMEO ECHO DELTA is a sound project by Iain Forsyth & Jane Pollard produced for AND festival. It is inspired by a long line of hoax alien invasions and fake UFO scares, most famously, Orson Welles’ radio play of H.G Well’s science fiction novel War of the Worlds broadcast for Halloween in 1938, as well as the BBC’s groundbreaking Broadcasting the Barricades by Father Ronald Knox, 12 years earlier.
The work was broadcast by BBC Radio Merseyside on 31 October 2011, accompanied by an ominous red light in the night sky above Birkenhead. Dense with speculation, confusion and repetition, the transmission began with the arrival of a studio guest, X Factor finalist Maria Lawson. Her interview is interrupted with the breaking news of the unexplained RED light. Local eyewitnesses, hastily found experts and idle speculation finally gives way as everything breaks down.