Hybridity and the essayistic approach in radio drama and documentary: incorporating found texts, field recordings, oral histories and original music composition in three original radio plays

Catherine Fargher

Research output: Contribution to conferenceAbstract

Abstract

In this paper I will explore the prevalence of hybrid methodologies, essayistic and inter-textual approaches in the development of new media and radio works, with specific reference to three of my original radio plays, produced by Jane Ulman at ABC Radio National Airplay between 2004 and 2010. The Violin Player (AWGIE winner, Australian Writers Guild National Awards, for original radio play 2010, The Jetty (currently in post-production) and The Woman Who Knitted Herself a Child, (broadcast 2004) have incorporated a range of found historical texts (The Violin Player), field recordings and original compositions (The Woman Who Knitted, The Jetty) as well as oral history recordings with family members (The Violin Player, The Jetty) and interviews with biological scientists (The Woman Who Knitted Herself a Child). The notion of 'hybridity' in New Media Arts practice encourages cross-fertilisation between traditional forms with new technologies. Audio Arts on radio represents an obvious site for intersections between many technologies. Radio is a fertile ground for the hybridising of text, archival and recorded sound, digital manipulation and composed music and many combinations of those. Radio and other digital media have also become important sites for Hybrid and New Media works, just as mobile phones, Internet and video have. According to New Media theorist Terry Flew, the development of digital media since the 1990s has seen a revival of interest in the writings of Marshall McLuhan [Flew: 41] who stressed the extent to which cultural content was embedded within specific technological forms. In any type of creative medium such as radio, new technologies will inform creative practices and similarly practices such as hybridization, inter-textuality or essayistic approaches will inform the use of new technologies. The New Media artist and lecturer Norrie Neumark explored the hybridisation between web and radio media in her paper Different Spaces, Different Times, presented at the 2005 Radio Conference at RMIT. She identified that various media can 'interweave ... letting the ... works complicate and enhance each other' [Neumark: 407]. In this paper I will outline theories of hybridity as well as specific hybrid and essayistic methodologies used for these plays. I will also play relevant excerpts from the recordings.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages1
Publication statusPublished - 2011
Externally publishedYes
EventRadio conference - Auckland
Duration: 11 Jan 201114 Jan 2011

Conference

ConferenceRadio conference
CityAuckland
Period11/01/1114/01/11

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