Vancouver Podcast Festival Prepares for Its Second Year

(flickr/pEtE)

Vancouver is hosting its second annual VanPodFest from Nov. 7-10, welcoming guests from podcast series like Dirty John, Secret Life of Canada, The Allusionist, Red Man Laughing, Thunder Bay and Dark Poutine. It will also include local podcasters, master classes, meet ups with creators, panel discussions on podcasting, and a pod fair.

Selina Crammond, the Director of Programming for VanPodFest, says that she is excited for what the second year will bring. Crammond works for the Documentary Media Society (DOXA), which puts on the largest film festival in western Canada every spring. Using her roots in radio for inspiration, she and her colleagues started working on VanPodFest when the popularity of podcasting began to boom.

“We noticed that there was a bit of a gap in the creative landscape in Vancouver, and noticed that there wasn’t really a space for local podcast creators and listeners to gather,” she says.

VanPodFest organizers say they hope to create that space.

Because DOXA is a documentary-based organization, Crammond expresses that it must stay true to its mandate of basing features around non-fiction podcast work directed at political and social change.

“Because of [podcasting and its] accessibility, there are a lot of really interesting stories and perspectives to be shared and heard,” she says.

Attendees can expect to see a variety of performances, workshops, and live presentations from podcasters. There will also be opportunities to take classes on the process of creating a podcast and what that process entails.

KPU Journalism instructor Aaron Goodman teaches KPU’s Audio Storytelling class, during which students get the chance to learn about verbal storytelling and to make their own podcasts. He says he believes that podcasting is one of the most compelling ways to convey stories and news in the world right now.

“I really enjoy listening to podcasts because I can listen while I’m commuting … while I’m doing a workout, walking the dog,” he says. “It just allows me to stay connected and listen to stories in a very helpful way. Before we had to tune in at the precise time a show was broadcasted.”

Goodman also thinks that the variety of voices in podcasting is a valuable aspect of the medium.

Whether you listen to podcasts already or want to learn more about them, the VanPodFest is bound to have an event that will interest you. Student tickets are being offered for a discount at vanpodfest.ca.

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