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Power of Podcasting

ABU-UOW Residential Workshop


As podcasting continues to attract new and committed audiences, the ABU has teamed up with award-winning Australian podcast producer Siobhan McHugh and the University of Wollongong, near Sydney, to host a week-long workshop that will help unlock the power of podcasting.

Siobhan’s workshop will cover the principles of producing crafted audio storytelling for a podcast series. It will provide tips on writing and hosting a podcast, recording personal interviews, editing for pace and texture and using sound and music to help bring a story alive.

Stories will be commissioned on the theme of ABSENCE, for a future ABU podcast series. This might mean missing a loved one, through death or emigration; the loss of something in nature: a forest cut down for industry, a river dried up due to drought, animals gone due to climate change; it could mean the absence of employment, or health, or loss of a limb; it could be a departed singer or actor or community figure; it might be nostalgia for times past.

Participants should bring a story outline and two related interviews, translated into English. The workshop will help you polish these towards a final feature.  From mid-2019, Siobhan will work with selected producers on a formal ABU/UOW podcast series.

VENUE: University of Wollongong.  Participants will have self-catering shared accommodation on campus at the University of Wollongong. The campus is set in leafy grounds, with lovely surf beaches and mountain walks close by. It is 90 minutes south of Sydney.

SCHEDULE:      25 November – 2 December 2018 Participants arrive and depart on Sunday. Workshop runs Monday-Friday, 9-5pm, Saturday is a free day.

EQUIPMENT:  A solid state portable recorder (e.g. Zoom) and headphones will be provided to participants, along with editing software and studio access.


SIOBHAN MCHUGH was consulting producer for the multi-award-winning podcast Phoebe’s Fall, from The Age newsroom, Melbourne (2016), their new Wrong Skin podcast and the quirky outback tale from The Australian, Lost in Larrimah (2018). Her work has won prestigious awards, including gold at the New York Radio Festival.  Siobhan has taught podcasting and audio storytelling in a wide range of settings, to journalists, writers, and cultural institutions. She writes on podcasting for The Conversation. Her latest ABC radio documentary features two Chilean women living in the Australian desert. From pro-Pinochet and pro-Allende families, they have become unlikely close allies in the production of Aboriginal art. It’s part of a podcast, Heart of Artness. She is the founding editor of RadioDoc Review, an online journal that critiques audio documentaries and podcasts.