Curated by Paola Mardo, host, creator, and producer of Long Distance
Paola Mardo is the host, creator, and producer of Long Distance, a documentary podcast about stories in the Filipino diaspora. Season two launches in fall 2019 and is produced with support from PRX and the Google Podcasts creator program. Here, she presents a collection of podcasts about finding home, and yourself, in the process.
I was born in Los Angeles and raised in Manila, Philippines, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, and the San Francisco Bay Area. As a 1.5 generation Filipino American who grew up in the diaspora, I’ve always been interested in stories about finding “home,” wherever that may be.
On Long Distance, I have tried to capture the sounds and stories of Filipinos, one of the largest diaspora populations in the world, and the ways we try to find home, and ourselves, in the process. The podcasts in this collection present stories that search for home and self in different ways, styles, and communities. Truth is, finding home and a place for ourselves in the world is a truly universal thing.
Long Distance is a documentary podcast about stories in the Filipino diaspora. Each episode moves beyond typical immigrant narratives to share thoughtful tales of love, loss, history, and humor through audio documentaries and creative approaches to storytelling with sound. Episode one, Little Manila (Part One), sets the scene. We head to Stockton, California, once home to the largest population of Filipinos outside of the Philippines, for a deep dive into the dark history of Filipinos in America.
Home of the Brave
All right, so maybe this podcast just has “home” in the title, but every time I listen to one of Scott Carrier’s stories, I cannot help think but about life and home and everything in between. The recent episode “The Life and Times of Solidod,” exploring the long and storied life of a woman who has lived many, isn’t produced by Scott, but the tale is as gripping as his own pieces.
Moving, thoughtful, and global are words I’d use to describe the stories on Kerning Cultures. Each episode provides a closer look into the nuanced lives and experiences of the many people and cultures that make up the Middle East, produced with mindful reporting and exquisite sound design.
The Vietnamese American story often begins in Vietnam and ends in America, where most Vietnamese refugees found home. But their stories are rarely covered in mainstream media save for Hollywood movies about the Vietnam War. In Second Wave, Thanh Tan journeys into the past and present to uncover untold stories of her community, while exploring her own family’s secrets and struggles along the way.
This one’s for the kids, but adults are welcome too! In this fun and engaging fiction show, twins Alexa and Beni travel back in time to important moments and places in their homeland Puerto Rico. Over the course of their journey, they learn a little more about history, life, and what it means to be part of the Puerto Rican diaspora.
Welcome to LA
Everyone *thinks* they want to move to Los Angeles. When they finally do, they get a wake up call paired with a hangover-induced headache that screams it’s not the dream they thought it would be. Enter Welcome to LA, a podcast in which David Weinberg takes you to the darker, realer side of life in Los Angeles, home to some of the strangest, funniest, most interesting people you will ever meet.
It’s hard to talk about Asian Americans, a group that technically formed out of political need and struggle. That’s why I commend the folks at Self Evident for striving to tell Asian American stories. It’s not easy—Asian Americans are not a monolith—and this is a great start. I particularly love the story of Gabe Mara, a Filipino American from Allentown, Pennsylvania who tries to connect with his family and heritage by taking a social media job at a Filipino festival and donating a kidney.
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