Opacity Zero is a show about challenging the unknown with curiosity. About unanswered questions, controversial answers and the need for a little bit of certainty in a world where nothing seems certain at all.
This is a completely independent production, coming to you from my little office space in our apartment in Seattle. And this is me, your producer, editor and host of Opacity Zero, Melanie Heymans
I guess the idea for this podcast was born more than 27 years ago, 5300 miles from here. Back then I was 6, living in Innsbruck, and I was the producer of my own radio show which I recorded on a bright yellow cassette player my parents gave me for my birthday. The topics were varied, there were news, mostly invented, music, which I sang myself, and there were guests. Guests who I interviewed and who were of course also portrayed by me, but I gave them all kinds of funny names and accents so my listeners wouldn’t recognize me. I remember one of my toughest interviews was with a very wealthy lady from Russia and Michael Knight, balancing the Russian and American accents with my native, the infamous Tyrolean, kept me on my radio host toes.
When I didn’t spend time recording, I spent it listening. I had tons and tons of MCs holding the stories of my childhood heroes and I loved joining them on their adventures over and over again. My absolute favorites were “Die Drei Fragezeichen” which in the US were known as “The Three Investigators” and “Mitternachtsparty” which freely translates to “Midnight Party.”
The heroes of these two stories couldn’t have been more different – while the three investigators were teenage detectives who worked for Alfred Hitchcock to solve all kinds of wondrous crimes and mysteries, midnight party’s hero was Hugo, the friendly ghost. He lived in the cellar of an old castle owned by the countess of Gruselstein (“scary stone”, just in case you were wondering.) The countess of course didn’t know about Hugo, but James her loyal and dedicated butler did. In fact he and Hugo were very close friends and together they fought burglars, exposed the countess’ money hungry nephew and outsmarted Wanda, the mean witch.
So what does this all have to do with this podcast, you might ask by now. Well I always loved stories, I loved to listen to them and I loved to tell them, they have been my refuge and my connection. I also love to wonder, wonder why things are a certain way, or not, why people do certain things, or not, wonder who did it, where is it, and why. For me, the three investigators and Hugo had one captivating thing in common, mystery. They posed the questions and together we looked for answers.
Let’s look for answers together,