Saturday, January 28, 2012

Nutshell: Andrey Allakhverdov

As my colleague Elena Uporova noted, before asking whether there's future for the radio (we mean documentary radio) in my country, one has to ask whether it had the past and the present. A very short answer for Russia is no, it didn't. It was a very short period in the post-Soviet radio history when journalists got enthusiastic about making documentaries but in a very short time it became clear that the stations which can broadcast such formats would not do it for political reasons, and commercial stations would not do it for commercial reasons. And there is no culture of listening to such programmes in my country. But we regard radio documentary not only as a product but as a process, the process of making it. And strange as it may seem, in my view the new formats where video, audio, photo, graphics are mixed up can (not necessarily will, but can) give a new life for the radio documentary, at least here in Russia. All the serious documentary-makers say that a new documentary is based on an audio narration, on a story told in sound. It is radio journalists who are the core of a team which would make new documentaries. So the process has a chance to stay. It definitely won't be the good old radio which you only listen to. But its power, its palette, the deepness of a radio story will remain. At least in my country I see no other way. I understand that what I say is a bit simplified view, but I had to keep it short."

Andrey Allakhverdov, FNR, Russia

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