Creators of Two Popular National Public Radio Talk Shows to Speak at the Historic Asolo Theater
Sarasota, FL – Sept. 5, 2008 – The creators of two well-known public radio programs will take center stage at the Historic Asolo Theater as The John and Mable Ringling Museum of Art partners with WUSF Public Broadcasting and Sarasota News & Books to present Voices of Public Radio. Dan Gediman, executive producer of This I Believe will speak on Wednesday, October 8 at 7 p.m., and Dave Isay, founder of StoryCorps will follow on Wednesday, November 5, at 7 p.m.
Both Gediman and Isay have recently published books chronicling the success of their programs that bring the oral and written observations of thousands of Americans to the airwaves of National Public Radio. Their programs can be heard regularly on WUSF 89.7 during the Morning Edition.
“We are honored to partner with the local NPR station and Sarasota News & Books to bring these popular radio talk show hosts to the Historic Asolo Theater,” said Dwight Currie, Curator of Theater Programming at the Ringling Museum. “This is an exceptional opportunity to hear firsthand about the stories that they have found most compelling and how they touched millions of Americans.”
In his book, This I Believe II, (Henry Holt and Co.) Dan Gediman highlights 75 essays from writers, both legendary and previously unknown, who share and discuss the core values that guide their daily lives. The project is based on the 1950s radio program of the same name, hosted by acclaimed journalist Edward R. Murrow who wanted “to point to the common meeting ground of believes, which is the essence of brotherhood and the floor of our civilization.” In reviving the program, Gediman says his goal was not to persuade Americans to agree on the same beliefs, but rather to encourage people to begin the much more difficult task of developing respect for beliefs different from their own. “We are not listing well,” he observes, “we are simply disagreeing. There’s a responsibility to change that, to cross boards, to encourage some empathy. That possibility is what inspires me about this series.”
Similarly, the heart of Dave Isay’s book, StoryCorps is “to honor and celebrate one another’s lives through listening.” Since 2003, tens of thousands of everyday people have shared life stories with family and friends in story booths that have traveled across the county to record the largest oral history project in the nation’s history. In his new book, Listening Is an Act of Love, Isay presents a tapestry of compelling excerpts from these stories as they were told by the people who lived them to the people whom they love. As Isay writes, “I realized how many people among us feel completely invisible, believe their lives don’t matter, and fear they’ll someday be forgotten.” In Listening Is an Act of Love he set out to record the history, hopes, and common humanity that illuminate the true character of America.
Tickets are now available for both programs in Voices of Public Radio. Tickets are $35 for each program, and include a copy of the author’s book. A book-signing reception will follow both programs. To purchase tickets, contact the Historic Asolo Theater Box Office at 941.360.7399 or visit www.ringling.org. The box office is located in the John M. McKay Visitors Pavilion of the Ringling Museum.