Year-in-review podcast segment a balancing act

By Lindsay Advocate

Some stories featured in the past season of the Advocate Podcast made us smile. “It’s a balancing act,” says the show’s producer/host. Photo: Nancy Payne

It’s an exercise in steadying that needle so that it hovers in the middle, says Denis Grignon, producer of the Advocate Podcast, about programming the twice-monthly newsmagazine show. Feature too many interviews or stories that focus on the serious and sober, he says, “and you risk alienating your audience with more heavy, even sombre subject matter…which everyone agrees we’ve all been overwhelmed with these past 12 months.”

Conversely, it’s equally important to include more than just light-hearted, cheerful topics; or listeners, he warns, will be just as turned off with a show that comes across as Pollyanna.

“It’s why an interview with our medical officer of health about vaccine hesitancy might be followed by one with a couple that rescues donkeys,” explains the veteran journalist, about the show that launched two years ago, with Wards Lawyers as its exclusive sponsor. “You really want to keep that balance of tone…of emotions,” he continues. “And I’ll be the first to admit that some episodes achieve this better than others.”

That balance is also what Grignon strived for in the most recent . It includes a year-in-review audio tour of sorts, with a montage of clips from various stories the podcast featured in 2021. With two dozen episodes and more than 100 segments to work with, Grignon admits he left out many of his personal favourite stories. “Because it was important to stick to that balance thing,” he explains. “So you’ll hear clips with laughter, but there are also a few of people getting choked up.”

“Think of it as ‘listen’ back on the past year,” compares Grignon. “Like flipping the pages of an audio book that’s about our community and the people who live here.

“Some pages will make you reflect, and others will make you smile.”

All episodes of The Advocate Podcast: Stories from Kawartha Lakes are available to stream and download for free on Spotify, Apple Podcasts, Podbean and via the link at the bottom of this page. 

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