Radio & Podcast News – Curiouscast doubles down on investigative podcasts

Corus Entertainment’s Curiouscast has announced its fall 2020 lineup of new and returning podcasts which doubles down on the network’s investigative series with two new shows. Hosted by Global Halifax reporter Sarah Ritchie, 13 Hours: Inside the Nova Scotia Massacre, pieces together the April 18-19 tragedy that left 22 dead, hour-by-hour, as it happened, what could have been done to prevent the killings, what police knew and the ensuing communication breakdown. Launching Nov. 9, new episodes will be released bi-weekly. Whatever Happened To, launching Nov. 19, is hosted by Global Toronto reporter Erica Vella and updates headline-grabbing stories that have fallen out of the news cycle, including Fukushima, The Chilean Miners, Zika Virus, The Ice Bucket Challenge, and Lac Megantic. Global Calgary’s Nancy Hixt is also back with Season 3 of Crime Beat, while the new season of The Super Awesome Science Show looks at the science of COVID-19. Read more here.

Audible has introduced Canadian Audible Originals, a new series of podcasts, audio series and audiobooks, featuring Canadian creatives like actor Colm Feore, CBC Dragons’ Den star and tech entrepreneur Michele Romanow, and Anishinaabe author and Globe and Mail columnist Tanya Talaga, among others. Romanow hosts The Revisionaries, in which she talks to startup founders about the crucial missteps that led to big breakthroughs, while Feore (The Umbrella Academy, House of Cards) narrates True North Heists, a true crime podcast that looks some of Canada’s most infamous robberies. Both are being offered to Audible members outside the platform’s paywall until Oct. 27. Upcoming releases will include Imminent Disaster, a sketch comedy series from Canadian screenwriter Catherine Hernandez (Crosshairs); Oracle and Oracle: The Dreamland Murders, a psycho-thriller audiobook and series from Toronto writer Andrew Pyper; and The Secret Diaries of Detective Murdoch, a 10-part companion to the long-running Murdoch Mysteries television series, narrated by its star Yannick Bisson and produced by Shaftesbury. Read more here.

Shaw Rocket Fund, Wattpad, and Shaftesbury have announced a new narrative podcast project, culminating from the inaugural Shaw Rocket Fund Accelerator Writing Contest which asked writers to create inclusive stories for Canadian teens. The aim of the prize is to pair an emerging creative writer with industry mentors to guide them through the creative process of creating a finished podcast. Shaftesbury will serve as the project’s first production partner, working with winner Loridee De Villa across all aspects of production, including a five-day writer’s room, budget prep, logistics meetings, casting, and production/recording of the 10 x 20 minute narrative podcast, based on her winning story The Infinite Worlds of Ella Jane. It explores what happens after Filipino-Canadian Ella Jane Flores wakes up on a mysterious train in another dimension.

The 2020 Canadian Podcast Listener study is out of field with Signal Hill Insights offering a sneak preview ahead of the study’s mid-November release. Among other findings, CPL 2020 reports that podcast listening ranks in the top tier of media activities for holding attention at 64%. It also finds that podcasts uniquely serve listeners looking to be both entertained and learn something new.

39 Online, the National Community Radio Association (NCRA/ANREC) virtual Community Radio Conference, will take place Oct. 26 – Nov. 6. It will feature two sessions a day, in addition to the organization’s AGM, Community Radio Awards and online gala. Learn more here.

Pure Country will air the 2020 iHeartCountry Festival across all 13 stations in Canada on Friday, Oct. 23 at 8 p.m. local time. The festival’s seventh incarnation will be hosted by iHeartRadio personality Bobby Bones and feature Dierks Bentley, Lady A, Sam Hunt, and Kelsea Ballerini, among other talent. 

SiriusXM is running Halloween-themed programming from scary stories to Halloween-themed playlists across its music, talk, comedy and entertainment channels. SiriusXM’s Scream Radio limited run channel will also feature Halloween countdown “The Freaky 50” and play scary score music, sound effects, and spoken word stories 24 hours a day through Oct. 31 on channel 105. In addition, SiriusXM’s Kids Place Live will launch a “Virtual Trick or Treating” Halloween special for kids and their families. The channel will spin non-stop kid-friendly Halloween music and play messages from children sharing what they plan to dress up as this Halloween, their favourite candy, or something special they’re doing to celebrate whether they’re at home or not. “Virtual Trick or Treating” will begin Saturday, Oct. 31 at 5 a.m. ET and run through Nov. 1 on channel 78.

Lake 88 (CHLK-FM) Perth, ON raised $103,767 during its second annual Lake 88 Radiothon for local hospitals last Thursday. With the help of volunteers from the hospital foundations serving the Almonte General Hospital, Carleton Place and District Memorial Hospital and the Perth and Smiths Falls District Hospital, donations were taken over the phone or via Zoom from 6 a.m. – 6 p.m. Funds raised will go toward the purchase of equipment to support frontline workers.

The 19th Annual CKNX Health Care Heroes Radiothon in Wingham raised $342,677 for 10 area hospitals on Oct. 18. Since 2002, the event has raised more than $12 million for hospitals in mid-western Ontario.

LISTEN: On the latest Sound Off Podcast, Corey Tremere, midday host at Ocean 100 (CHTN-FM) Charlottetown. Tremere talks about how Canada’s smallest province is coping with the pandemic, what lies ahead for radio, and how the approach of local and social continues to pay off in the smartphone era.

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