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Feb 16, 2017 at 7:08 pm

Full Spectrum Storytelling Intensive Summer 2016

Is your skillset stretching to its full dynamic range?

Would a prism of expert experience help
your story find its true colors?

Explore our Full Spectrum Storytelling Intensive.


AIR’s Full Spectrum Storytelling Intensives started with Localore and Makers Quest 2.0, two experiments in public media that challenged a handful of talented, creative producers to come up with new ways of finding and telling stories.

In 2016, award-winning indie producer Audrey Quinn (Marketplace, Planet Money), will lead workshops with guest instructors: Amanda Aronczyk (WNYC), Sean Cole (This American Life), Von Diaz (StoryCorps), Celeste LeCompte (ProPublica), Jonathan Mitchell (Radiotopia’s The Truth/Studio 360), Sruthi Pinnamaneni (Gimlet) and Christopher Allen (UnionDocs).

These audio-first intensives were designed by AIR in partnership with UnionDocs to expose producers to a broad range of approaches to storytelling and to an expanded set of technical skills.

Over the course of a week, a team of accomplished instructors drawn from public broadcast journalism, independent media, and media art will take up to 14 producers on an excursion through storytelling to sound processing to interactive design and more. Applications are competitive; a travel stipend is available to members of AIR’s network who win entry to Full Spectrum.

All classes take place at UnionDocs in the Williamsburg neighborhood of Brooklyn. There will be an evening excursion, a happy hour, and a lunch on Monday. Participation is encouraged, but optional.

June 20 – 24 2016

Who is eligible?  

Full Spectrum has a competitive application process. We are looking for mid-career producers and story-first technologists from all walks of the media industry and beyond who have demonstrable skills in digital sound gathering, editing and mixing.

Filmmakers and those whose primary focus has been print, visual or moving image are strongly encouraged to attend, as well.

AIR membership is not required, though AIR members are eligible for a small travel stipend. A work sample is required with your application.

Please note: Participants *will not* be producing a piece during the week. Focus is on listening and discussion.

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+++Full attendance is mandatory. If you are unable to attend each day of the intensive, please do not apply. Class meets from 10AM – 5:30PM, Monday through Friday. Lunch is on your own except for Monday. Snacks provided.+++

Questions? Contact us at [email protected].

2016 Class Overview:
Subject to change 


To begin the intensive, we’ll get our ears and minds primed for the week, starting with inspirational listening and a discussion about what keeps us engaged and coming back for more. In the afternoon session, WNYC’s Amanda Aronczyk will take an advanced look at the ways we both listen and hear, and explore why radio is uniquely situated for storytelling

AM: Audrey Quinn, lead instructor

PM: Amanda Aronczyk (WNYC)


In the morning, “This American” Life producer Sean Cole will explore next-level interviewing, from writing questions that might end up in the final piece to inserting yourself in the story. In the afternoon session, we’ll dissect our own and each other’s work in an intensive workshop.

AM: Sean Cole (This American Life)

PM: Intensive Peer Workshopping


In the morning session, Von Diaz tackles best practices for weaving personal experiences and voice into your reporting, as well as reporting on cultures that are not our own. In the afternoon, ProPublica’s Celeste LeCompte brings practical approaches to multimedia data reporting, and how to develop new lines of revenue from newsroom projects.

AM: Von Diaz (StoryCorps)

PM: Celeste LeCompte (ProPublica)


In the morning, Sruthi Pinnamaneni looks into the stories that give us pause. Why do we tell them, and how? Which tools and techniques should we apply? The afternoon offers a second intensive workshop, and a look at how we could apply techniques learned in the prior sessions.

AM: Sruthi Pinnamaneni (Gimlet’s Reply All)

PM: Intensive Peer Workshopping


UnionDocs’ Christopher Allen leads the last day with an exploration of how to tell high-impact stories about a community, using many voices over a long period of time. To close the workshop, Jonathan Mitchell will share techniques he uses in his podcast, “The Truth,” from scoring music, to composing scenes with sound, to mixing.

AM: Christopher Allen (UnionDocs)

PM: Jonathan Mitchell (Radiotopia’s The Truth/Studio 360)

Daily breakdown

10 a.m. – Warm-up, points of reference, listening exercises, ear training.

11 a.m. – Presentation

12:30 p.m. – Share / Discuss Exercise

1 p.m. – Lunch (provided on Monday; on your own thereafter)

2 p.m. – Seminar Presentation*

* On Tuesday and Thursday, the afternoon will be dedicated to student workshopping.

3:15 p.m. – Seminar Discussion

4 p.m. – Workshop Exercise

5 p.m. – Workshop Critique

5:30 p.m. – End

Instructors and Guest Speakers

audrey picAUDREY QUINN is a Brooklyn-based radio journalist and editor. Her investigative work has received awards from the Fund for Investigative Journalism and The Nation Institute’s Investigative Fund, and has been published in the New York Times. She teaches radio at the NYU Journalism School, has been a teaching associate for the Transom Story Workshop, and co-founded the live radio performance event Radio Cabaret. She spent this winter as a guest reporter at NPR’s “Planet Money” podcast.

AmandaPhotoForAIRAMANDA ARONCYZK is a reporter for WNYC and its “Only Human” podcast. Her stories have appeared on NPR, the BBC, “Marketplace,” the CBC, “Reveal,” “On the Media,” “Studio 360” and more. She teaches at the CUNY Graduate School of Journalism. Find her on Twitter @aronczyk.




sean_0SEAN COLE is a producer at “This American Life.” He has worked as a producer at “Radiolab,” is a regular contributor to “Marketplace,” and a freelance reporter for many shows and podcasts including “Studio 360” and “99% Invisible.” His career started at WBUR in Boston where he was a news writer, engineer, announcer, field producer, reporter and, finally, a correspondent for the station’s award-winning documentary unit, “Inside Out.”


VD_heashot_3_EllaColleyVON DIAZ is a writer and radio producer based in New York City. She is a self-taught cook who explores Puerto Rican food, culture, and identity through memoir and multimedia. Her work has been featured on NPR, American Public Media,WNYC, PRI’s “The World,” BuzzFeed, “The Splendid Table,” The Southern Foodways Alliance’s “Gravy,” and “Colorlines.” She is a radio producer at StoryCorps. Previously, she was editor of Feet in 2 Worlds, which brings the work of immigrant and ethnic media journalists from communities across the U.S. to public radio and the web. Von holds a dual master’s degree in journalism and Latin American and Caribbean studies from New York University, and a bachelor’s degree in women’s studies from Agnes Scott College. She was born in Rio Piedras, Puerto Rico, and grew up in Atlanta, Georgia.

LeCompte-headshot2CELESTE LeCOMPTE is the director of business development for ProPublica. She previously served on the launch team for Gigaom Research, as the founding editor and the director of product. She co-founded Climate Confidential, a year-long crowdfunded reporting project that examined the intersection of environment and technology in collaboration with national and local media partners. As a 2015 Nieman Fellow at Harvard University, LeCompte studied motivations for news consumption, with an eye toward developing new, reader-centric media business models. She has also advised on product development and content strategy for numerous media organizations, nonprofits, and corporate clients. As a journalist, her work focuses on innovation and environmental subjects, often in combination.

Jonathan mud KilfinaneJONATHAN MITCHELL is the producer of “The Truth,” a podcast on Radiotopia that makes short films without pictures. He has contributed a wide range of work—documentaries, fictional stories, non-narrated sound collages, and original music—to all sorts of programs: “Radiolab,” “Studio 360,” “All Things Considered,” “Planet Money,” “This American Life,” and PBS’s “Nova,” to name a few. His work has won many awards, including the Peabody, Third Coast Festival, the Sarah Lawrence College International Audio Fiction Award, and the Gold Mark Time Award for Best Science Fiction Audio. He studied music composition at the University of Illinois and Mills College, and lives in New York City.


sruthi_twitter (1)

SRUTHI PINNAMANENI is a producer at Gimlet Media’s “Reply All.” Her work has aired on “Radiolab,” “Studio 360,” “Marketplace” and “Love + Radio.” She worked on the award-winning feature film “Kumare,” and, as an audio/video correspondent at The Economist, she traveled between cities and villages in India to produce a series on rural education and the informal economy in slums. Sruthi grew up in South India, and has a degree in mathematics from the University of Michigan and a master’s in journalism from Columbia University. She lives in Brooklyn with her husband and two sons.

Christopher-final-160x160-1CHRISTOPHER ALLEN is a founder of UnionDocs and is currently the Artistic Director. After graduating from Columbia University and studying at Trinity College Dublin, Allen worked as a social entrepreneur, documentary director, and new media artist. His individual works and collaborative projects have been exhibited at the MoMA, Harvard’s Carpenter Center for Visual Arts, the Volksbühne Theatre, DirektorenHaus in Berlin, Independent Film Week, Sonár, DIVA, and Conflux Festivals, among many other venues. He directed the interactive documentary Capitol of Punk, which was part of “Design and the Elastic Mind” at the Museum of Modern Art, and he is currently in post-production on the feature Diamond Vehicle, shot in Tibet, China, Nepal, and India. Christopher was founding-partner of Counts Media, and played a leading role in the invention and execution of many art & entertainment concepts there, such as The Ride NY, a live theatrical and cinematic experience on the streets of the city, and Yellow Arrow, a place-based storytelling project exhibited online and in galleries and museums internationally.

AIR is a vibrant, tightly networked association of more than 900 journalists, documentarians, technicians, media entrepreneurs, and sound artists spanning 46 states and 20 countries worldwide. Founded in 1988, AIR has emerged as a force for identifying, cultivating, and deploying talent to accelerate public media innovation and expand service to more citizens across the U.S. AIR’s mentorship and training programs, unique in the industry, were launched in 1995 with a grant from the MacArthur Foundation and continuing support from the National Endowment for the Arts, NYSCA, and the Corporation for Public Broadcasting.

The fee for the intensive follows the schedule below. A deposit of $75 is due upon application to the program. The balance is payable by .

Spring Session Deposit Deadline/Rates:
$75 – Deposit by April 19
$850 – Full Tuition by May 16

Please note: If you pay by PayPal, you will be charged a 3% processing fee. Check is accepted by mailing it to UnionDocs at 322 Union Ave, Brooklyn NY 11211.

AIR members living outside of NYC are eligible to receive a stipend ($100) to help underwrite fees and travel. First come, first served. If you’ve received a stipend or mentorship opportunity in the past two years from AIR, you may not be eligible.

Participants coming from outside NYC are responsible for their own transportation and room and board during the intensive. UnionDocs can provide assistance in locating housing and guidance for getting around town for those not native to New York.

Refund Policy:
If you are not accepted into Full Spectrum, you’ll receive a full refund of your deposit. Should you pay the full tuition and need to cancel, you’ll receive half of your registration fee back until May 16th.

Questions? Contact us at [email protected].



Feb 16, 2017
7:08 pm

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