26 January 2009

Death's Footprint - Airs Feb. 2

Produced by Diane Richard and Todd Melby, "Death's Footprint" is a documentary on the environmental consequences of death. Cemeteries take up thousands of acres of open space. Funeral homes use gallons of toxic chemicals a year. And cremation consumes lots of energy and emits toxins into the environment. Today, many Americans are looking for ways that make their deaths greener. But change is coming slowly. The way we practice death has deep cultural and religious traditions. This program includes interviews with an embalmer, an undertaker, a 34-year-old woman who wants to have her corpse composted by worms, the sounds of a crematorium and an exploration of the newest, greenest body disposal technique: resomation.

19 January 2009

Learning to Live - Airs Jan. 26

"Learning to Live: James' Story" is the story of an ex-felon's transition from prison to the free world. James, who narrates, is 38 and has been in and out of prison all his adult life. After completing a seven-year prison term for burglary, James comes to live at St. Leonard's halfway house for ex-offenders on Chicago's West side. Over three months, James goes through a rigorous education process that includes job training, drug counseling and twelve-step support meetings. His recovery is tested when his eighteen-year-old son, whom he hadn't seen in fourteen years, is arrested on a drug charge. After landing his "dream job" in customer service for a cable company, James leaves the halfway house having begun to "learn how to live."

"Learning to Live: James' Story" won the Edward R. Murrow Award; the Third Coast International Audio Festival Public Service Award; and the 2002 Society of Professional Journalists Sigma Delta Chi Award. Judges in the latter competition called it "a tightly straightforward report that skillfully wove actuality and narration, James telling his story as only he could. It was clear, concise and remarkably comprehensive."

Barack Obama: The Inauguration Mix - Airs Jan. 19

Listen to four Barack Obama remixes that include speeches from the President-elect, music from Nina Simone, Q-Tip, Kevin So, M.C. Yogi, Dephazz, will i. am, commentary from Bill Cosby, Tom Hanks, Artie Lange, John Legend and messages of good will from around the world.