I started the week off by watching two videos by Jad Abumrad – How Radio Creates Empathy and Digital Shamanism and Old-Fashioned, Newfangled Storytelling Magic . In the videos, he said that what makes radio special is what it lacks. I thought this was such an interesting way to think about it. He talked about the fact that something on the radio is painting a picture but the listener is the one holding the paintbrush, which creates a sense of co-authorship and empathy.
I started listening to “Moon Graffiti” with these ideas still fresh in my mind. As soon as the story started, I was drawn in. The sounds used in the story created a new world in my head. I felt like I was right there on the moon along with Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin. I felt the change in atmosphere, I held my breath in the eerie silence, and felt the shock and curiosity that they themselves were feeling. Below is a 20 second clip from the podcast that really illustrates the different uses of sound.
In the clip, you can hear their distorted voices and the sounds of a latch being opened. The sounds are very real, drawing you into the story. The music gradually crescendos and brings on a sense of impending danger and suspense.
This is a phenomenal example of audio storytelling. The combination of the sounds effects and the music allows you to create a story in our own head. This is an example of the concepts that Abumrad talked about in his videos. The fact that you yourself are the one holding the paintbrush and experiencing the story make it so much more real and personal.