Panel at Columbia Journalism School

I was on a panel yesterday on multimedia journalism at the Columbia Journalism School’s student center. Erin Polgreen discussed her soon-to-launch tablet magazine of illustrated journalism, Symbolia, and cartoonist Kat Fajardo and I shared what we’d learned as collaborators.

I’m especially proud of my experience working with Symbolia. I had my first opportunity to pair with an illustrator, and I learned some interesting lessons about the tricky nature of interactive journalism — there’s no knowing how your audience will consume your story until you hand it over to them. In the case of Kat and my story, “The Secret Species of the Congo,” I initially intended for it to come across almost purely through audio that user clicked his way through. It turned out people didn’t have the patience to go through so much audio, so I had to adjust the piece to include more text and shorter sound clips.

The first issue of Symbolia will come out late November or early December. The debut issue is free, and it will operate on a subscription basis after that.

Photo: Beth Kopine Canipe

Flavor Wars on the Marketplace Morning Report

I had a piece this week on the science and business behind your snack aisle’s newest flavors. In perhaps one of my most interesting trips of my radio career, I got to visit a flavor lab in Edison, New Jersey. I also spent more that a few days loitering with a microphone in front of the potato chips at Bed Stuy’s Super Foodtown, and had the pleasure of interviewing Barb Stuckey, author of Taste What You’re Missing.

Listen Here Running time 2:28

BAM Fisher Audio Tour


The Brooklyn Academy of Music (a 150-year old institution with a theater, cinema, opera house, and arts education programs) opened the doors of its newest venue last week. The BAM Fisher holds an black box theater for experimental performances, a state-of-the-art rehearsal space, an educational workshop room, and a rooftop bar. I had the pleasure of producing an audio tour for the new building in collaboration with producer Brendan Baker.

You can hear the tour by calling (718) 269-0248, or click on the individual stops online here. I most recommend listening to artist Jose Parla’s description of his new mural, the tour of the theater, and the rooftop tour.

Producing this tour converted me to a full-fledged BAM fan. I’m excited to check out their showing of Philip Glass’s opera Einstein on the Beach next week!

First lady politics

I’ve been having fun this week with a SmartPlanet blog post I wrote about my uneasiness over Michelle Obama’s DNC speech. I feel like the campaign brushes aside her accomplishments as a scholar and career woman in order to canonize her as a mother. I realize there are a number of political factors at play here, and that there’s an inherent need for the campaign to pander to more conservative voters. I find it disheartening, but I’m more than happy to hear other opinions. The discussion in the comments section has been lively and I’m joining in regularly, so please add your thoughts!

In other posts this week, U.S. health system waste, the probable cause behind rosacea, and the prospect of bioengineered corn as a savior in the Midwest drought.

Radio Cabaret + The Atavist

Radio Cabaret paired up with The Atavist earlier this month to produce our first collaboration event, at the home of New America NYC.

D for Deception is a tale of WWII spies complete with live music, theater, dialogue, and plenty of wine.

The show featured a performances by D For Deception author Tina Rosenberg, Seth Kessel and the Two Cent Band, and actor Gregg Mozgala.

We were really happy with how the event turned out, and are exciting for more collaborations coming forward, so stay tuned!