Scene on Radio Podcast

In 2015, CDS audio director John Biewen launched the Scene on Radio podcast, which goes out of the studio and into the field to “explore human experience and the society we’re making for ourselves in America,” Biewen says. Scene on Radio features audio work made at CDS—his own new stories, the best pieces by his students, and an occasional gem from the archives.

Season 2 of Scene on Radio featured the 14-part series "Seeing White," which was nominated for a Peabody award.

Season 3 of the Scene on Radio podcast—MEN—launched July 11, 2018; episodes will post every other Wednesday. The podcast’s producer, CDS audio director John Biewen, describes the upcoming season: “Co-host Celeste Headlee and I will take a similar approach to the Seeing White series, which explored the history and meaning of whiteness. With MEN, we’ll be asking questions like, What’s up with this male-dominated world? Is male supremacy inevitable? How did we get sexism/patriarchy/misogyny, and what can we do about it?”

Scene on Radio episodes are posted every other Wednesday. Subscribe on the podcast website, and follow Scene on Radio on social media: @SceneOnRadio.

Scene on Radio Episodes

A photo of mussels.


“By now I have become a freshwater mussel groupie. I fawn over photographs. . . . I stalk them from a distance, writing their names in my notebooks: fatmucket, pistolgrip, heelsplitter, shinyrayed...

A photo of a pamphlet sitting on top of a flowery tablecloth. The pamphlet reads "How to Get to Heaven from Whittier, Alaska"

City Under One Roof

“Whittier occupies a crescent moon of shoreline, ringed in mountains and bordered by the sea. Barring arrival by boat or small plane, a single-lane tunnel is the only way to cross the tight ring of...

A blurry photo of a woman with her back towards the camera walking through a forest.

The Forest

“In these photographs, a deliberate juxtaposition of dark and light exemplifies the complex nature of the black subconscious. Afraid and fearless at the same time, we rise.” By the time she graduated...

A photo of a young man in front of a hearse.

Seeing the World in a Different Way

“I [came] into this course, thinking . . . it was very much about photographing. But what the whole year turned into for me was really about meeting people and relating to people. Trying to come in...

A drawing of a woman's head in profile looking at a cake, with the words "I speculate about cake... for Moira Kalman"


“An answer is satisfying, but speculation is limitless. The daydreaming I still do about the mysterious and unaccounted for missing half of that cake brings me more joy than the facts about what...

A collage from "One Hurricane Season" by Tamika Galanis, featuring an old photo mixed with leaves and other natural ephemera.

One Hurricane Season

“This work is an amalgamation of things that have gone the same way of my grandmother’s memories, carried into the ether by the water and the wind.” CDS has been fortunate to have documentary artist...

An image of CD Wright

A Reading from One With Others

“This is not a work of history. It is a report full of holes, a little commemorative edition, and it aspires to the borrowed-tuxedo lining of fiction. In the end, it is a welter of associations.”...

A black and white photo of a man sitting on a curb in front of a plume of steam from a grate, by Sylvia Plachy


“My photographs are of the world but not documents. They come as visions and demand my attention. As a photographer I must take them. They insist. . . . I will talk here and there, and I hope the...

A photo of an old camera set up on a tripod in front of an old house

Witness, Evidence, and Documentary Art

“This thing we call documentary and this thing we call invention are universal impulses to see, to create, a happening—what we try to do here I think is not so much ‘take’ [photographs] but craft...

A photo from Gravity is Stronger Here

Gravity Is Stronger Here

“I am a fellow American seeker who holds up a camera, a double-sided mirror,with the hope that everyone involved, subject and photographer alike, gains a deeper understanding of who we collectively...