Full episode
450: So Crazy It Just Might Work
Act One

Mr. Holland's Opus

One day a successful cancer researcher named Jonathan Brody gave a talk at his alma mater, about how people in his field need to think outside the box if they're going to find a cure. Afterward Jonathan's old music teacher Anthony Holland shared an idea that was way out of the box: Killing cancer cells with electromagnetic waves. Gabriel Rhodes tells what happened next. Gabriel is also working on a documentary film version of this story, called The Cure. (35 1/2 minutes)

Correction: Ira writes—In an edit of Gabriel Rhodes's story, I mistakenly asked him to insert erroneous information about sound waves and electromagnetic waves, and then acted so completely confident about it—misremembering a science show I worked on years ago—that nobody in the editing process bothered to fact check it. The people in the story were using electromagnetic waves, not sound waves, for their experiment. This was very much my mistake and not Gabe's, and I regret telling him to insert a mistake into his otherwise carefully researched and fact checked story. Thanks to the many listeners who wrote to point out the error. We've gone back and fixed this, so the versions aired in 2012 and posted here on the website have the correction.