Fun: My Love Affair with NPR and This American Life Live

I ‘discovered’ NPR in college through my favorite radio station, WNKU. Cincinnati radio is pretty dismal – made up of top 40, hard rock, oldies, easy listening and Christian stations. WNKU was different – it was a neighboring college’s excellent alternative radio station playing Rock, Soul, Blues, News and More.

The News part came in the form of NPR and once I started co-oping (interning but it took place of school classes and I got paid), I listened to NPR on the way to my job in the morning and on the way home in the evenings. Soon, it was the only radio station I listened to. WNKU gave me my first taste of NPR programing like World Cafe with David Dye and E-Town (which is recorded in Boulder!).

After moving to Denver and finding my local NPR station, KUNC, I happened to be in the car one Saturday morning and caught my first ever This American Life show. Each week, the host Ira Glass, features a theme and brings the listeners a variety of stories and perspectives about that theme. Themes range from switched at birth (<–it happened!) to garbage to the middle of the night. Each show is thought-provoking and interesting. It’s hard to turn it off because you want to find out how the story ends.

This American Life is, no contest, my favorite radio show. So when I saw on Twitter this week that This American Life was broadcasting a live show in theaters (the Invisible made Visible show) I knew I was going to get my butt to a theater and see it.

The show originally live broadcast on Thursday, May 10th at select theaters across America, Canada and even as far as Australia! Earlier this week on Tuesday, a few theaters were showing the taped show again – with only 4 theaters in the Denver and surrounding metro areas, I was lucky to find a theater relatively close by in Lakewood (15 minute drive from my apartment). I excitedly bought tickets for me and Alex – I couldn’t wait to SEE the voices I’ve come to instantly recognize and love!

The show was fantastic – it was 2 hours long and set up into 4 acts, just like the radio show. In between acts, the show featured dance, music (with OKGO!), a short film and a segment about photography. I won’t spoil any of the stories by describing them here – you should check your local NPR station and find out when this week’s This American Life is on and catch the radio version!

I will leave you with this humorous short film, created by Mike Birbiglia, that debuted during the orignal live show.

Well, readers, thank you so much for coming out to read  my blog.  (<–I love Terry Gross!)

If you haven’t heard This American Life, I highly recommend giving it a listen! There’s also a TV show version that you can find on the This American Life website.  

Are you an NPR listener? (<–is that ‘an’ or ‘a’? I know ‘a’ is grammatically correct.. but I would say ‘an’.) What’s your favorite show?

I also love Car Talk, Fresh Air, Marketplace, Wait Wait Don’t Tell Me… actually, there isn’t a show that I don’t like!



Fun: My Love Affair with NPR and This American Life Live — 2 Comments

  1. I adore NPR! My friends make fun of me and call me old for liking it but I love the diversity of the stories on there and how well-informed I feel now about our world. I agree, there’s not a show I don’t like! Glad to find another girl in her 20s who appreciates it. I’m bummed that I didn’t discover it til March or so. I’ve missed out for so long! Haha

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