Big News From Radio Diaries

Friends of Radio Diaries,

You may remember our documentary Willie McGee and the Traveling Electric Chair, which follows Bridgette McGee’s search to find the truth about her grandfather’s life – and death. Since it aired on NPR in May, the story has been broadcast on BBC World Service, bringing it to places like Ghana, Nigeria, and Pakistan. Strange and amazing. And this past weekend the documentary won the silver prize at the Third Coast International Audio Festival.

This month we’re releasing a special “behind the scenes” podcast that explains how the remarkable recording of McGee’s execution came to be preserved, forgotten, and rediscovered after six decades. You can subscribe to our podcast here.

And for those of you in New York City this weekend, there’s one more exciting thing we want to tell you about. On Sunday (11/7) afternoon we will be presenting Willie McGee and the Traveling Electric Chair as part of the new DOC NYC, New York’s Documentary Festival, which makes its inaugural launch this week in Manhattan. The radio event is hosted by Dean Olsher, and he says the festival is kind of a big deal. Werner Herzog will be there. Errol Morris will be there. It’s outstanding that the organizers have carved out space for radio documentaries.

They recommend buying tickets in advance. A description is below. You can learn more about DOC NYC and purchase tickets here.

The Medium Formerly Known as Radio: The Evocative Power of Sound
The radio documentary is enjoying a golden age, on the broadcast airwaves – and newly reinvented on the Internet. Longtime public radio personality Dean Olsher, creator and host of The Next Big Thing, curates a selection of dramatic audio documentaries that demonstrate the unique evocative power of the medium of sound. The special guest is duPont-Columbia winner Joe Richman of Radio Diaries, who will present his new award-winning documentary Willie McGee and the Traveling Electric Chair.

As always, you can hear all our stories at Thanks for listening. We’ll be back next month with more news and a new story on NPR.

All the best,

Joe Richman
Executive Producer
Radio Diaries

Radio Diaries is a nonprofit organization working with people to document their own lives in their own words.

169 Avenue A #13 | New York, NY 10009 US


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