The Times Record January 22, 2021
The Bowdoin College website
Published January 12, 2021 by Tom Porter
“Scandal, Intrigue, and Salaciousness”: Acting in a Podcast Soap Opera
Rhonda Weppler is “a smart, sexy, and calculating woman who knows how to get what she wants.” Ivan Bulgakov is a Russian mobster and not a man to be trifled with. They are also fictional characters played by two Bowdoin members of the Bowdoin community in a popular podcast drama.
“It’s fun, and it’s exciting,” says Denise Shannon, who plays Rhonda and who, as well as being an accomplished actor (“short films, commercials, theater, life in general!”), is executive assistant to the senior vice president and dean for student affairs at Bowdoin College. Bulgakov is channeled by music scholar Tony Antolini ’63, who for many years was director of the Bowdoin chorus until his recent retirement.
The show is a podcast soap opera called Restless Shores (“scandal, intrigue, and salaciousness, fifteen minutes at a time”) which is enjoyed by tens of thousands of listeners in more than seventy countries. The show recently surpassed forty-five thousand downloads.
Restless Shores revolves around Milton Roupp, head of Roupp Pharmaceuticals, his family, and business associates. The fifteen-minute episodes are released each Friday on your favorite podcast site and are produced locally by New Meadows Media in West Bath. The cast of nearly twenty actors range in age from twenty to seventy, says Shannon, and everyone associated with the show is Maine-based.
“I feel very fortunate to have had an acting outlet during these difficult times.”
“I love playing Rhonda! She’s interesting and never dull. Starting as a single woman having a longstanding affair with Milton while climbing the corporate ladder, she is now the mother of newborn twins from Milton’s clone Miguel. It’s complicated.” The show has been going for two years now and is approaching its hundredth episode. There was a hiatus when the pandemic struck last year, explains Shannon, but recording started again in June, following recommended health and safety guidelines. “Many of us have recording equipment at home, so we can send in our part if we are unable to attend the recording session. I feel very fortunate to have had an acting outlet during these difficult times,” she adds.
“I got involved with Restless Shores after Denise [Shannon] posted an announcement on the Bowdoin Digest asking if there was anyone who could perform on a radio broadcast with a Russian accent,” says Tony Antolini, who proved more than qualified for the task: He earned a PhD in Slavic studies from Stanford University and over the years has spent time living, working, and studying in Russia. Antolini also received an outstanding achievement award from Moscow State University for the promotion of Russian choral music in the US. “In the years that I spent in the USSR and then Russia as a tour guide, graduate student, and musicologist, I’ve absorbed Russian pronunciation of English as if it were a second skin.”
Antolini noticed that his character, the Russian gangster Ivan Bulgakov, shares a last name with the celebrated twentieth-century Soviet novelist and playwright Mikhail Bulgakov. “I mentioned this to the director, and he told me he had actually fashioned my character on a fictional descendant of Mikhail Bulgakov!”
Restless Shores will broadcast its hundredth episode on January 22, when listeners will be keen to hear the latest developments in the ongoing saga of Roupp Pharmaceuticals and some major plot twists emerge. All characters are attending a major event, and a few of them may not make it out alive, we are warned.
What else is on the horizon? Restless Shores is seeking sponsors for the show, and information is on their website. “I could easily see this plotline turned into a sitcom for television. Our writers, Greg Tulonen and Drew Masse, have done a fantastic job of weaving characters in and out of the story and giving a lot of depth, fun, and intrigue at the same time. It will be exciting to see where we go next,” says Shannon.
Bowdoin Magazine, Fall 2020
Check out the mention of Antony and Denise on page 52 of the Bowdoin College alumni magazine.
From a living room in West Bath, a soap opera unfolds for download
Produced by local actors and downloaded worldwide, ‘Restless Shores’ might be the only podcast of its kind.
207 Interviews Restless Shores Cast
News Center Maine (WCSH Channel 6) Robert Nesbitt’s report on Restless Shores. Watch the actors performing and interviews with Greg Hawks, Shirley Savage, and Director Thom Hinton.
Posted January 29
Auburn man head writer on new, campy radio soap opera ‘Restless Shores’
LEWISTON — Milton is a hard-charging pharmaceutical CEO planning the family succession. Rhonda is his administrative assistant and scheming mistress.
Miguel is a mysterious stranger trying to uncover his past. The only clue: A bracelet his mom wore when she escaped from a medical facility. When Miguel gets to Gamote Point, the bracelet starts vibrating.
It’s all unfolding on “Restless Shores,” a new Maine-made campy, retro radio soap opera, dropping as a weekly podcast from New Meadows Media of West Bath.
Head writer Greg Tulonen lives in Auburn. His lengthy writing and occasional-acting credits include working on the tech crew and volunteering to be an on-screen security guard in 1994’s “Time Chasers,” a small indie movie that caught the attention of cult fan favorite “Mystery Science Theater 3000.” Read More
From a West Bath living room to your headphones, actors unravel the mysteries of ‘Restless Shores’
| February 12, 2019BY NATHAN STROUT
Times Record Staff
WEST BATH — Huddled in a small West Bath living room, half a dozen local actors and actresses gathered to record the latest episodes of the self-styled soap opera podcast, “Restless Shores.” With director Thom Hinton watching quietly from the corner, the cast begins a read-through. As they read off of printed out scripts, phones and tablets, the cast digs into the campy script with relish. Read More
Nathan Strout’s article was linked under podToPod’s Podcast Industry News’ That’s Interesting category.
We were mentioned on Reddit when someone asked about suggestions for podcast soap operas! Our fans are talking about us.
Listen Rinse Repeat
Cast member Julie Scala recently had a shout out for her performance in Geographically Impaired by Listen Rinse Repeat. Check out the article.
OwlTail is a service that lists the “best episodes of the most popular podcasts.” Guess who made their list?
Maine Public’s Short List
Restless Shores is on Maine Public’s podcast list in the Speculative Fiction catagory.
Ranking of 4.7 out of 5
Mmmeeshmeesh 2/22/21 Love this show! I just started listening and I am so happy to have so many episode to binge on. I love all of the characters but I think Miguel is my favorite. Keep up the good work!
JanelleR 8/11/20 Twists and turns! Restless shores is a fun dramatic soap opera pod cast. The cast seems to have a sense of humor as does the writing. I love all the characters but Milton, Lorna and Rhonda have to be my favorites. I wish they were longer and I wish there were more to listen to!
StarFire98 02/21/20 Love it but … Love this story but the music is terrible and the episodes are short. But, Please do not stop.
Colbydog1, 02/08/2020 Love Restless Shores!! I am completely sucked in!! I have been binge listening all weekend. The Characters are great and the twists and turns are fabulous!!!
Brunswickdoc, 12/27/2019 Addictive in a good way Love listening to it every Friday. Lorna Roupp is my favorite character.
JenFromMaine, 12/14/2019 So fun! I’m hooked! Love listening!
Moms favorite!, 11/10/2019 Amazing!! I love the show! Keep it up. My favorite is Harlan the archeologists
Fly Fishing Simplified, 11/07/2019 It gets you hooked Listen to the first two episodes and then try to stop listening. It isn’t possible. Great show really enjoying it.
claudette mcmurrin, 03/05/2019 Hmmmm getting hot On my third episode and I’m hooked
Mainecreek, 02/05/2019 Can’t wait for more! I’m already hooked, excited to hear the next episode!
hipstervenus, 02/03/2019 So original! I cannot wait for the next episodes! The suspense is killing me. Love love love the characters.
Wilmarie9, 01/31/2019 Scandalous!!! I wish the music at the beginning of the episodes wasn’t so long. Other than that, I love it!
Northeastern Scott, 01/24/2019 Interesting to see where this goes Intrigued by this and will look forward to other episodes!
Lion boo, 01/24/2019 Oooo the drama Ugh I love the billionaire intrigue. Let’s keep up the good story! 😍😍😍 I’m hooked.
Stevie in Maine, 01/22/2019 Intriguing story Oh, dastardly things are happening in Gamote Point! Milton, Rhonda and Uriah are creating a web of blackmail and intrigue. Wonder where this will go???