Story from Sound

I’m a writer, radio producer, sound designer and academic who was an Associate Member of the New York theatre company The Wooster Group, commissioner for the London radio station Resonance 104.4FM and creator of the multi-award winning drama series Blood Culture.  I gained my PhD in Creative Writing from Bath Spa University in 2011. Currently I am working at the University of Brighton as an academic and am developing a range of audio and immersive projects for digital media and broad.  I live in Brighton with my extremely verbose and noisy, but fundamentally friendly, family.

This page presents a short summary of my activities, toggle the headings to read more on each subject.  There is a link to my full CV below and the ‘Works‘ and ‘Papers’ pages on this site present excerpts and clips from a selection of my academic and production output.

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Radio

Between 2015 and 2017 I developed, wrote and produced The Welcome Trust backed audio drama series Blood Culture.  Released in April 2017 this ten part series topped for the iTunes charts in drama for several weeks, and earned a variety of accolades and awards including a Gold Award for Best Drama Producer at the Audio Production Awards, a Silver Award for Fictional Podast at the British Podcast Awards, a Bronze Award for Best Sound Design at the Audio Production Awards and nominations at the ARIAS and the BBC Audio Drama Awards.  In 2017 I also presented the BBC Radio 4 documentary Art in Miniature, a daytime documentary about microscopic art.

Between 2013 and 2015 I worked as Commissioning Editor of Programming for Resonance 104.4FM.  A role that served as an extension of the 5 years I spent as a non-executive director of the station and involved  my reviewing on-air content sourcing and commissioning shows for the station.  Between 2014 and 2016 I product the  spoken word podcast series The Odditorium.  Based on the long-running Brighton club The Catalyst Club, the podcast reached the iTunes top ten for Arts and Drama on launch and was downloaded over 120,000 during the course of two seasons.

I worked with The Wooster Group from 1996 to 2000 as producer of a sequence of plays for BBC Radio 3 (The Emperor Jones, Phèdre and The Peggy Carstairs Report) . In 1999 I recorded two documentaries with Yoko Ono for BBC Radio 3, the first time she’d spoken at length to the British media for over 20 years. In 2001 I wrote a serialisation of John Wyndham’s The Day of the Triffids for the BBC WorldService. My work in radio and theatre has earned a number of awards including two Sony Radio Academy Awards and a Prix Marulić..  I have also worked in commercial radio and made radio commercials winning awards for my production of HEA backed drug information and safe sex advertising.

I began working in the form as a radio artist and worked extensively with composer Rohan Kriwaczek on a series of works for BBC Radio 3, BBC Radio 4 and independent stations internationally. Our collaborations included a long-running series of live radio performances and a trilogy of experimental plays for radio (If on a Summer Night a Listener…Ho! Ho! The Clown is Dead and Glowboys)

Theatre, Transmedia and Writing

I joined The Wooster Group in 1998 as an associated Member, working principally as a sound designer for their stage production as well as taking occasional performance parts and producing the company’s three radio works. I was involved with the development of the sound design of their work House/Lights and To You the Birdie, and opped sound for their re-staging of North Atlantic. I voiced the part of Mr Viper in House/Lights. Since leaving New York in 2002 I have designed sound for a range of stage and performance productions for performances as diverse as youth theater pieces performed at the Theatre Royal Bath to a performance art ghost train that toured festival and town squares.

Between 2009 and 2012 I wrote and directed The Flickerman, a transmedia thriller that used film, web media and radio to tell its story. The series was broadcast on radio internationally and was described in the Guardian as being “new and innovative” and “fashionably compelling”.  In 2011 I led the development of educational new media project for the Globe Theatre in London. A scavenger hunt around the organisation’s museum, Shakespeare’s Treasure Hunt, combined a range of AR, QR and mobile technologies into a learning experience aimed at 15-18 year olds. The project reached is its Alpha stage of development.

The 2017 audio drama Blood Culture utilised a rich range of transmedia techniques and approaches including multiple in-world web-sites, an interactive SMS-text game and live real world experiences. 

Research

In January 2019 my co-authored monograph (written with Dr Martin Spinelli) will be published by Bloomsbury Academic.  Entitled Podcasting: The Digital Media Revolution it is the first extensive critical study of podcasting and is based on nearly 40 interviews Martin and I carried out with podcasters from the US and the UK.

In 2010 I completed my PhD in Creative Writing at Bath Spa University.   Titled BBC Radio Drama Commissioning (1989-2009) and Two Scripts Emerging from 20 Years of Change,  the research concerned breaking down and analysing the procedural changes that had occurred to the process by which the BBC brought radio drama to the air, and the effect these had had on the process of radio writers.  This work was funded by the Society of Authors and my supervisor was Dr. Steve May.

My broader research activities have focused on transmedia and participatory storytelling, non-linear narrative and the possibilities offered by digital and web-based radio.  I delivered papers at conferences in Germany, Portugal, the United States, Canada and across the UK.  Between 2006 and 2009 obtained and I managed a £60,000 project funded by the National Arts Learning Network investigating possible forms of provision for CPD in the arts of media for BEM students.

Lecturing and Academic Management

Since the beginning of 2012 I have been working as a senior lecturer at the University of Brighton.  Between 2005 and 2011 I worked at Ravensbourne in London in a Subject Leader role, course leading degree in Sound Design and Music Production for Media. During my time at Ravensbourne the courses I ran expanded their numbers for 15 when I joined to 140 students six years later when I left.

I was a key member of the institutional team that gained £250,000 of funding from the Ahmet Ertegun Education Fund for a new musical degree to be delivered at the institution. Designed the BA (Hons) Music Production for Media course that was tailored to the needs of contemporary musicians working in the digital age and the requirements of Harvey Goldsmiths, the fund’s manager.

I set‐up and co‐ordinated Transcriptions: Sound a collaborative project with the National Gallery, Ravensbourne and in 2010 BBC Radio 3, the project was nominated for a LEP (London Educational Partnership) award in June 2010. The National Gallery’s based their Sound of the Gallery audio tour on the project, featuring a number of students work alongside those of professional composers.). I also launched a collaborative project with the ZSL London Zoo with students work being featured as part of an “Zoo Art” tour. In 2011 I set-­‐up and led a ‘live’ project with EA Games involving teams of students recording, editing and packaging audio assets that were integrated into the videogame Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2 (released in July 2011).

 

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