AIR selects five teams to produce live events

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The Association of Independents in Radio announced grantees for its new Localore initiative supporting experiments with community engagement through live events.

Three of the five teams selected for Localore Live grants will partner with NPR member stations.

AIR announced the grants Friday during the Public Radio News Directors Incorporated conference in Philadelphia. The five teams selected for the foundation-backed initiative will test new ideas for reconnecting communities “across political, economic, geographic, linguistic, and other divides,” according to a press release.

Kari Barber and Nico Colombant, partnering with Reno Public Radio and the Reynolds School of Journalism at the University of Nevada, will produce three events featuring first-person stories told by people without housing in Reno.

In Canton, N.Y., Amy Feiereisel will partner with North Country Public Radio to produce events about the experiences of workers in rural communities. The events will be recorded for a podcast to be distributed as a companion to Feiereisel’s ongoing broadcast coverage of the topic.

Elise Pepple, GM of Marfa Public Radio in Marfa, Texas, will produce “Orchestrated Collisions: Live Stories from the Wide Range,” a series of events during which community members will discuss topics impacting the region.

John Johnson, a community collaborator for the Localore Anacostia Unmapped project, was selected to produce eight live events in Washington, D.C., using the improvisational “playback theater” technique.

In East Boston, Brittany Thomas and 94.9 FM Zumix Radio will collaborate on a three-part series, which will include live storytelling around the issue of rapid housing development.

Grant amounts range from $19,000 to $30,000 for each team. Principal support for the initiative was provided by the Wyncote Foundation and the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation. (Current is supported in part by a grant from the Wyncote Foundation.) The Corporation for Public Broadcasting, the Ford Foundation, the National Endowment for the Arts and the New York State Council on the Arts also provided support.

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