To Scene or Not To Scene

NPR’s legal affairs correspondent Nina Totenberg finds on-scene narration canned and phoney and she says ambient sound often gets in the way of a story. Yet, her recent report on buffer zones around health clinics proves otherwise. [...]

Nodding Syndrome

Producer Matt Kielty wonders about “objectification” and advancing a career reporting on the suffering of others. [...]

The Burning Question

Audie Cornish gets my vote for the best smile in public radio. Audie is co-host of NPR’s All Things Considered. (Photo by Doby Photography/NPR)

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The interview may be the core of what we do as radio producers. Conduct a solid interview and the rest will follow. Blow [...]

A Trip to the Dentist

Not Larry’s actual tooth (as far as I know).

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On this edition of HowSound, set the “Way-Back Machine” to 1977 for a legendary story — Larry Massett’s psychedelic “A Trip to the Dentist.”

The piece is legendary in public radio circles for two reasons. One, it was assembled on three, [...]

Stand-Ups

NPR Reporter, Robert Smith. Photo by Lam Thuy Vo.

 

Robert Smith’s stories for National Public Radio regularly bring a spark to news programs full of “just-the-facts-ma’am” stories. Robert does it by going live — narrating to tape on location. Freestylin’, if you will. No script. Just Robert and the moment.

In [...]

Show, Don’t Tell

Brian Reed — with tape rolling — wades into a lagoon on Kirabati to learn how high the sea has risen. (Photo by Claire Anterea)

Brian Reed has a knack for visual radio. Brian employs, with great effect, the old writing maxim “show, don’t tell.”

On [...]

Krulwich on Gorilla Cage Drama

 

I just listened to a slew of “Hmmm….”, Robert Krulwich’s science podcast for NPR. I couldn’t stop listening. One, then another, then another.  If the phrase for a good book is “page turner,” Robert’s podcasts are a “click-wheel turner.”

The same goes for Radiolab, the science program from WNYC that Robert co-hosts with [...]

The Pirate

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Kelly McEvers

 

Kelly McEvers is a mic-slinger. Draws from the hip. Records with precision. Not afraid. (Okay, maybe a little bit afraid.)

Kelly is NPR’s Baghdad correspondent but, lately, she reports from throughout the Middle East — especially the countries where the revolutions aren’t working, as she puts it.

On this HowSound, [...]

Good Reading: Radio Giant Norman Corwin Dies In Calif. At 101

From an October 18, 2011 NPR report:

“Norman Corwin, a creative giant of the Golden Age of Radio whose programs chronicling World War II are milestones in broadcasting, has died. He was 101….

During a career that spanned more than 70 years, Corwin wrote, produced and directed for radio, television, film and the stage.

His [...]

Good Reading: On Murdoch and Liberal Bias At NPR

From Edward Schumacher-Matos, NPR’s ombudsman:

“NPR has long been accused of being liberal, but a review of the coverage these past four months of a story tailor-made for liberal fangs may be instructive over how true the charge really is. The story is the ongoing phone-tapping and bribery scandal battering Rupert Murdoch and his media [...]