Making It Sing: An Audio Documentary Intensive


This intensive six-day workshop for producers with some experience—or a lot—gives you a chance to focus on a challenging project or to stretch and try something new. You’ve recorded interviews and gathered sound, and you’re ready to construct a six- to twelve-minute audio piece. You’ll bring your own recordings, logged, transcribed, and ready to go. You’ll get instructive sessions and personal, small-group guidance from seasoned radio producers (and from your peers) as you structure and script your story, record your narration tracks (if any), and mix your piece on CDS’s Hindenburg workstations—or, if you prefer, on your laptop with your own editing software. Saturday morning, we listen! The intensive will be led by John Biewen, along with guest instructor Shea Shackelford. (35 hours)

John Biewen is audio program director at the Center for Documentary Studies. Besides teaching summer audio intensives and undergraduate courses, he produces documentaries and features for NPR, PRI, American Public Media, and other public radio audiences. Biewen has been making radio since 1983, including eight years spent producing documentaries for American RadioWorks. His work has won many honors, including two Robert F. Kennedy Awards, the Scripps Howard National Journalism Award, and the Third Coast International Audio Festival’s Radio Impact Award. In 2015 he launched CDS's biweekly podcast Scene on Radio.

Shea Shackelford
is a documentary producer and a founder of Big Shed Media, an award-winning public media shop specializing in audio and multimedia production. When he isn’t producing his own stories, Shackelford is busy training producers and helping organizations design and create their own media projects. He is the creator of the Place + Memory Project, and his awards include a Best Documentary: Bronze Award at the 2010 Third Coast International Audio Festival. He has been part of the CDS summer audio intensive team since 2005.

Additional information:
Please bring your own recordings to the intensive. Students can edit on their own laptops or on our desktop workstations, which have Hindenburg and Adobe Audition audio editing software.

The enrollment fee includes dinner the first night and all lunches during the week. Students are responsible for housing and transportation.

Hours for the intensive are:
Monday, July 30: 5 p.m.–9 p.m.
Tuesday–Friday, July 31–August 3: 9 a.m.–9 p.m.
Saturday, August 4: 10 a.m.–2 p.m.

The intensive concludes Saturday, with a public presentation of student work ending at 2 p.m.

See the course blog for a preliminary schedule, information on housing options, and more.


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Center for Documentary Studies
CDS Auditorium
Biewen 7/30 - 8/4 Mo Tu We Th Fr Sa Varied $875.00 View