Friday, February 24, 2006


Personally I find this to be one of the most progressive ideas in radio programming to date. It is positive, culturally signifigant and absolutely fascinating when aired. The first StoryBooth opened in New York City's Grand Central Terminal on October 23, 2003. It was a great idea, and as great ideas sometimes do, it took off.

CPB and NPR are behind this one. StoryCorps is a national project that instructs two everyday people on the art of interviewing and then records them. They are not intierviewing Leonard Breshnev. They are set up so that you interview your grandmother, your uncle, or the old guy making sandwitches in the cafe on the corner. Its purpose is the perservation of our stories, our oral histories.

They are building these soundproof recording booths across the country, called StoryBooths. You can use these to record broadcast-quality interviews with the help of a trained facilitator. They also have two traveling recording studios, called MobileBooths, which make cross-country tours. It's simple to do, they handle all the technical aspects you ask questions and answer questions. At the end of an hour-long session, you get a copy of your interview on CD. It's free, although making a $10 donation would be polite.

The recording goes in the StoryCorps Archive, housed at the American Folklife Center at the Library of Congress. NPR uses their favorite bits every week on the air.

Volunteer to work with story Corps here:

When I first heard about this I wanted to drag mygrandparents to the booth and drop them off. I may yet do that.