Telling Tales is a weekly showcase of audio dramas & documentaries, made by students and residents living in Sunderland. The programme exists as a platform to give emerging audio producers the chance to broadcast their original work to our young Sunderland audience in a safe & relaxed environment, & share their work with a wider listenership than they can usually achieve alone.
“The show is a priceless tool for local spoken word audio producers seeking to promote awareness of their material and contributes a valuable service to the community.” - Michael McLaren
Originally established in 2013, Telling Tales has been playing pieces “too good to miss” as a celebration of the talented young producers across Sunderland (Spark’s local listenership); but despite the regular changing of hands between producers since 2013, the show had maintained its simple format as a weekly space in the schedule to park long-form content, interspersed with continuity announcements.
“Telling Tales as a programme gives myself and other audio creators in university or surrounding Sunderland a chance to showcase our creativity, our talents, and network together professionally.” - Stephanie Chungu
However. Since January 2017, Telling Tales has undergone a great, positive development; rather than simply playing content, the weekly programme now invites the producers of these audio dramas, documentaries & sound art pieces into the radio studio to share the stories & experiences behind creating the pieces, and their thoughts on their creative practice, live on air.
“It was a great chance to let people know the story behind the story; what led me to make the piece and how I found the whole process. The interview was very informal and I didn’t feel any pressure at all to disclose anything I didn’t want to.” - Angela Burns
MA student Emma Casson joined the team in March 2017: “Since starting presenting Telling Tales, I have developed new skills which I’ve been able to apply elsewhere, particularly when interviewing. What I enjoy most about Telling Tales is the team and their enthusiasm, and the opportunity to chat to emerging audio producers about their work. Just through talking to these talented producers you can learn so much, even those who are just starting out have so much to share.”
Telling Tales’ new conversational format has allowed the programme to refocus itself as a local centre for creative advice, and aims to offer support and guidance to emerging audio producers, or even potential listeners considering a career / hobby in speech radio, about how to develop their creative practice & form future collaborations.
“Being a guest on Telling Tales was a wonderful experience, as it was a great platform to celebrate my radio work, and everything that I have achieved since graduating. The show is also a brilliant way to help others; to share my advice to students wanting to get involved in media and work in the industry.” - Alex Burgess, Capital North East
At the request of the guests involved, Telling Tales is occasionally pre-recorded, which is beneficial to the more introverted audio producers such as 3rd year radio student Joël Watts; “Telling Tales is very accommodating. I liked that it was pre-recorded because you were able to edit out all the mistakes I made.”
Such is the strength of Telling Tales’ community, our former guests (Emma Casson, Angela Burns and Michael McLaren) have recently joined the team.
“Telling Tales provided me with a public platform to showcase my production work on air; a very rare opportunity. It gave me the chance as a guest to discuss at length the creative process of the programmes, and what I aspire to achieve in the future.” - Michael McLaren