WNYC Studios to Release Dolly Parton’s America Podcast

WNYC Studios will release the Dolly Parton’s America podcast sometime in Fall of 2019. It is a nine-part series that is not hosted by Dolly Parton, but it sounds like she will appear in the podcast. The podcast is about something bigger that the American music icon has unintentionally been connected with.

In this intensely divided moment, one of the few things everyone still seems to agree on is Dolly Parton – but why? The simple question leads to a deeply personal, historical, and musical rethinking of one of America’s great icons. Join us for a 9-part journey into the Dollyverse.

Dolly Parton’s America is hosted by Jad Abumrad, who is the Executive Producer and creator of Radiolab’s More Perfect, a podcast that explores how cases deliberated inside the rarified world of the Supreme Court affect our lives far away from the bench. Jad Abumrad “did most of his growing up in Tennessee, the state where Dollywood is located.

Shima Oliaee is a consulting producer at Radiolab, and the producer on the 9-part series Dolly Parton’s America. She is a first generation American born and raised in Nevada. She worked four seasons on the golden globe-winning Brooklyn Nine-Nine before joining the Radiolab team in 2017. Last year, she co-reported Radiolab’s sexual consent three-part series In the No, and co-produced the mini-series Unerased: A History of Conversion Therapy in America.

A trailer for Dolly Parton’s America was released on October 3, 2019. It is short, yet gives a really good glimpse into what the podcast is like. Fans of Dolly Parton will very likely be interested in this podcast. So will those who wonder why Dolly Parton has become a connection between Americans who have diverse and contradicting cultural values.

WNYC and MoMA Collaborate on “A Piece of Work”

WYNC Studios and the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) have collaborated on a new podcasts with the delightful name: A Piece of Work. It is a 10-episode podcast hosted by Abbi Jacobson.

WYNC Studios, as you may know, is the premier producer of on-demand and broadcast audio. Some of their most acclaimed and beloved podcasts include Radiolab, Freakonomics Radio, and Death, Sex & Money.

The Museum of Modern Art is located in New York City, New York. They celebrate creativity, openness, tolerance, and generosity. They are committed to sharing the most thought-provoking modern and contemporary art, and hope people will join them in exploring the art, ideas, and issues of our time.

Abbi Jacobson is an actress and writer known for “Broad City” (with Ilana Glazer.) The show follows two women as they go about their daily lives in New York City. The comedy series is on Comedy Central. Abbi Jacobson has a background in art. TIME reported that she went to art school and wanted to be an illustrator.

A Piece of Work is everything you wanted to know about modern and contemporary art but were afraid to ask. A bicycle wheel attached to a stool; a giant canvas splattered with paint; dozens of soup cans…for many museum visitors, works like these prompt a ton of questions.

A Piece of Work is where Abbi Jacobson looks for answers to those kinds of questions. The show includes lively conversations with curators, artists, and some friends, such as: Hannibal Buress, Tavi Gevinson, RuPaul and Questlove.

WNYC Launches Podcast Accelerator

WNYC LogoThe idea of an “accelerator” (sometimes also referred to as an “incubator” or “hothouse”) is nothing new in the tech world. Accelerators are often used as a way to nurture startups in their earliest days to see if they can really build a viable product. WNYC, the New York based public radio/podcasting juggernaut, has launched its first ever Podcast Accelerator:

The WNYC Podcast Accelerator will give both established talent and up-and-coming storytellers the opportunity to pitch their big podcast idea and potentially win the chance to produce a pilot. Modeled after successful tech accelerators such as Y Combinator, the WNYC Podcast Accelerator is the first of its kind in the dynamic podcasting space.

Applications for Podcast Accelerator will be accepted between June 25 and July 15, 2015. Five finalists will be selected from the pool of applicants. These finalists will be paired with WNYC producers who will help them refine their show ideas. On September 25, finalists will pitch their shows to a panel of judges at the Online News Association conference where one winner will be chosen. That winner will have an opportunity to produce a pilot episode of their proposed show for WNYC.

Here are the eligibility requirements:

The Podcast Accelerator is open to anyone able to attend ONA and who is NOT a current employee of NYPR. ONA will provide a complimentary registration badge (value: $500) to each finalist. Teams can submit a group pitch, but only one person per team can be comped. Familiarity with audio equipment isn’t required, but is recommended as our work with the finalists is intended to focus on the content itself.

And then the prizes:

Finalists get one complimentary ONA badge apiece, and benefit from a six-week virtual mentoring and training period, in which leading audio producers will help you hone your pitch, including story lines, character development, sound, texture, voice. In addition, you’ll have two virtual meetups with fellow finalists, ONA’s digital director and a WNYC producer to share ideas and progress.

My interpretation of that is, anyone can submit a show idea unless they’re already an employee of WNYC or its affiliated companies. Also, it looks like you can enter the contest from anywhere (unsure if it’s limited to North America or anywhere in the world) but WNYC won’t be paying your way to the finals. However you will receive a free badge for the ONA conference.

Being involved with the Podcast Accelerator could be a great opportuntity for both new and experienced podcasters alike. For more information on the contest, check out the link at the top of this article.

WNYC Launches #SmartBinge Listening Campaign

WNYC LogoNew York public radio powerhouse WNYC has started a new campaign called #SmartBinge (the hashtag is part of the official name). #SmartBinge plays off of the trend of “binge viewing,” an increasingly popular activity that involves marathon-length sessions of TV watching, usually over the course of a couple days. But instead of tuning into the latest seasons of your favorite shows on Netflix or Hulu, WNYC would like you to load up on shows from its podcast archive.

The official #SmartBinge page implores you to “Binge This” with a tiled list of shows underneath. Mouse over a tile, and it’ll bring up a description of that particular show. Clicking a tile takes you to a simple media app containing a list of embedded audio players, a volume control and a sidebar of other functions. When a tile is clicked, #SmartBinge automatically saves all of the available episodes form that show to a folder in the sidebar. Once you’re done with an episode, or if you’d like to remove an episode for any reason, just click the trash icon next to that episode’s player and it’ll disappear from the list as well as your Saved folder.

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