Salt Institute for Documentary Studies

Located in Portland, Maine, the Salt Institute for Documentary Studies offers a 15-week immersion program for advanced undergraduate and graduate students in documentary writing, photography, or radio.
This blog is an update of current Salt students insights and musings.


What I took away from meeting Jad Abumrad.

Tonight, April 29th, the Boston Museum of Science hosted a listening party of Radio Lab's production: "Space". The event took place in the planetarium. Following the event, everyone gathered in the blue wing for chocolate fountain, twittering performance art by Boston CyberArt and the chance to talk one on one with Radio Labs host and producer, Jad Abumrad.

After we (Salt Radio students) stole him away for a moment for a group picture, I got to ask him some questions...

(Gist): Since he interviews many highly technical people (ie scientists), does he have a unique way of eliciting clarity/brevity or excitement from the subject ("drinking the kool-aid" as he put it).

He confirmed that the "crackpot analogy" method is very handy but you need to be careful with it. You take a big risk of losing credibility with your subject.

Regarding the "kool-aid"...
"[paraphrased: I try not to lose the conversation... the moment we were in together. Much of what you hear on NPR is narration, narration, narration, quote, narration, and so on, ...I dont like that. After you upload the interview, you need to get out and take a walk around the block. You can get lost in the Word script and ProTools. Find the moments that excited you in the piece. Have others listen to those moments and watch their reactions. Those reactions will help you frame the conversation that you found exciting.]"

From this I took away that the excitement was not something to elicit from the interviewee but something to recover from the interviewer.

- Shane ... Radio

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P.S. >> Field notes: there was a spaceship from the last Star Wars film hanging overhead in the reception area; one of the ladies from CyberArt, dressed in a black dress and carrying a laptop like a cigarette girl of the 1930's, had a bleeding blister on her heel that looked uncomfortable; the chocolate in the fountain tasted like melted Hersheys yet there were more people around the fountain than were talking with Jad; the cash-bar was $3 for a soda, 5 for a beer, and 7 for a mix drink; chatted with a scientist (Joanna?) about science journalism, she teaches at Harvard {cellular mechanics?};...

1 comment:

term papers writers said...

this guy reminds me ..... Bill Gates!! really, something similar I found. just look