News & Events

The Sarah Awards 2017 Judges!

We're extremely excited to announce this year's judges for the 2017 Sarah Awards. All of whom have discerning opinions and fantastic taste. Check them out below.

Daniel Alarcón

Daniel Alarcón Is a writer and Executive Producer of NPR's Radio Ambulante, a Spanish language podcast. He's the author of several books, including the novel At Night We Walk in Circles, a finalist for the 2015 PEN Faulkner Award. Privately, he most wants to be remembered as a better than average attacking midfielder. 

Malin Axelsson 

Malin Axelsson is a playwright, author and director born in Stockholm 1975. She is the artistic director of Swedish Radio Drama since 2015. During 2009-2015 she was the artistic director of ung scen/öst. She graduated from the Swedish University College of Film, Radio, Television and Theatre in 2002, and has been translated into German, French, Rumanian and Norwegian. In 2015 she debuted with the novel Anropa.

Ellen Horne

Ellen Horne.jpg

Ellen Horne is an Executive Producer on the Audible Original team responsible for creating ground breaking audio storytelling. After spending the last year delving deeply into the mammoth Madoff financial fraud to produce Audible Original’s 6-part documentary series, Ponzi Supernova, Ellen is now devoting her attention to an audio fiction project. Formerly the Executive Producer of Radiolab, Ellen oversaw the production team, drove it’s strategic direction, and directed Radiolab's live stage shows.

Rikke Houd


Rikke Houd is an independent Danish radio maker occupied with real life stories, imagined ones and the sounds and silences that weave it all together in the magical space of the ether. Rikke has worked with audio storytelling in many forms for internationally for nearly 20 years. She's won the In The Dark Sheffield International Audio Award and been a finalist for the Prix Europa, and the Prix Italia.

Al Letson

Al Letson is the host of public radio's first investigative journalism show, Reveal. He was also creator, host, and executive producer for the award-winning State of the Re:Union (SOTRU). A true renaissance man, Letson poetry has been performed on stages and TV screens across the country. In 2016 he was chosen by DC Comics to take part in their writers work shop. While it may seem like his interests are varied, they are all aspects of who Al Letson is — a storyteller for the new millennium.

Tony Phillips

Tony Phillips is Vice President of On Demand Content at WNYC and is a former Commissioning Editor at BBC Radio 4 and the World Service.  Prior to making radio documentaries and the odd drama, he trained as professional actor at the Bristol Old Vic theatre School And studied American History and American Literature at the University of East Anglia.

Nelly Reifler

Nelly Reifler is the author of See Through and Elect H. Mouse State Judge. Her work has been published in McSweeney's, Bomb, jubilat, and Story, among others, and read aloud on Selected Shorts and at Audible. An editor at Post Road, she teaches at Sarah Lawrence College. 


Very, Very, Short, Short Stories Finalists (Part 1)

Serendipity Ep 17:

Very, Very, Short, Short Stories Finalists (Part 1)

In this episode of Serendipity, we play 5 of the 10 finalists for our 2016 Very, Very, Short, Short Stories Contest. Featuring: "Bitterly Cold" by David Garland, "The Staging Area" by Jason Gots, "Noir" by Pa Ying Vang, "#blessed" by Jackie Heltz, and "Blinking" by La Cosa Preziosa. Read More

Towards a Poetics of Audio: The Importance of Criticism


Towards a Poetics of Audio: The Importance of Criticism

It is an exciting time for audio. The tumultuous growth of podcasting and the concomitant development of digital channels, multiple platforms, and user-driven content has not only expanded and re-energized the form, but forced public radio to loosen its stays and let down its hair.Where once we might have talked of “the system” or “the industry,” we can now confidently say we are part of “a culture.” But—we are missing two important components of a vital culture: a critical language, and with it, a critical practice. The language should be expressly designed to describe our forms, tropes, and themes, but with reference to the larger culture and world of ideas. And the practice should be constant, robust, and open, with critical tools wielded to help us better understand our work, and ourselves, and to help our public to better understand us as artists. Read More

Getting On with James Urbaniak


Getting On with James Urbaniak

James Urbaniak is the kind of podcaster that other producers love to hate. His show, Getting On with James Urbaniak, consists of nothing but a single voice reading a fictional soliloquy, often written by someone else. There is almost no elaborate soundscaping, no intricate plot development, little evidence of endless editing sessions to get the thing just right. Getting On sounds like Urbaniak cruised into the studio, an iced latte in hand, and finished recording before his drink grew tepid. None of this would be infuriating if the podcast in question wasn’t so good. Read More