Culture Casts has the privilege of collaborating with some of the top producers in the country. Check out our work below.
NPR Presents Michel Martin, Going There
This series featuring All Things Considered host Michel Martin has been a part of Tony Bol’s portfolio since January, 2015. The series visits cities across the country to strike up conversations about issues of national interest that are recorded for public radio broadcast.
Commissioned Content and Staged Stories
As director of Minnesota Public Radio’s Fitzgerald Theater in St. Paul for over a decade, Tony Bol programmed the stage in ways that extended the mission of A Prairie Home Companion. Garrison Keillor’s famous radio show established the foundation for smart shows that tell stories from a stage. And the theater being named after literary icon F.Scott Fitzgerald set a standard that embraced writers, readers and cultural artists. Tony curated programming there to engage public radio audiences of all kinds. Programs he originated include: a three-year story telling residency with NPR commentator Kevin Kling; indie artists participated in residencies with the theater’s historic Wurlitzer organ; Jearlyn Steele hosted an all women’s show celebrating the 90th year of a woman’s right to vote; and T. Mychael Rambo mounted several productions that embraced black culture in America. Authors found their way to the stage through programs Tony created such as Talking Volumes and Newbery Reader’s Theater with Kate DiCamillo. Wits was an anchor program he designed for clever comebacks, topped with a dash of rock and roll. Programs he also created presented significant journalists, including Cokie Roberts, Thomas Friedman and Bill Moyers, all for MPR’s Broadcast
Journalism Series. Tony says that the content he created during that time was for “theater of the listening mind”.
NPR Presents Family Matters
NPR Presents Family Matters brings Morning Edition host David Greene to cities around the country for conversations between regular people and financial experts, revealing the impact of personal finance on people’s lives.
Big Events, Galas, Fairs, and Ideas Festivals
Sometimes you have to think big because big is what’s needed! Communities love to come together for major cultural milestones and celebrations. Large scale events must deliver a significant return on investment and have an efficient system in place. Tony Bol has lead numerous events this way for thousands and thousands of people at a time. His work brought the presence of Minnesota Public Radio at the Minnesota State Fair and the creation of MPR Day as an official MN State Fair program. As part of MPR’s Classical Music Initiative, he filled Minneapolis’s Target Center with 10,000 music lovers by hosting the Mormon Tabernacle Choir. He was on the leadership team for the Top Coast ideas festival and initiated an event that brought President Bill Clinton to the stage of Northrop Auditorium, both in the Twin Cities. As for big outdoor events there’s a Little Free Library Festival for 8,000 visitors and the development of Garrison Keillor’s Meatloaf Supper and Street Dance every Fall. This sizable portfolio also includes opening galas for a new MPR building in Minnesota and American Public Media’s Frank Stanton Studios in Los Angeles. Events on a large scale offer a transformative cultural impact for a community, and with solid planning and a good team, it’s nothing less than magical!
Public Radio Podcast Upfront
The first-ever public radio podcast upfront took place in New York City in March, 2015. It included representatives from public radio’s podcasting leaders NPR, WNYC, and WBEZ. Tony Bol designed the stage program for the invite-only event that featured talent including Ira Glass, Guy Raz and Glynn Washington.
Developing Travel Programs with customized content packages has been a successful part of Tony Bol’s portfolio ever since the development of MPR Custom Travel for Minnesota Public Radio. Culture Casts offers a range of travel resources alongside deep experience with aligning talent with relevant destinations and meaningful programming – all essential for successful public media travel offerings.
Defining Results and Shaping Strategy for Content Events
Events for content continue to grow at public radio stations across the country. The digital landscape has allowed event content a clear destination with a media home beyond the broadcast tradition. Often this event platform has been an investment that continues in strategic isolation. Alongside PRPD and with the help of multiple stations, Culture Casts is working to define measurable results and examine strategic design for content events. They are dedicated to establishing a set of shared event principles through an analysis of research, interviews and comparisons. Culture Casts presented its preliminary findings from a national study on events for content at the 2017 PRPD conference. See the survey results here.