NPR’s StoryCorps trailer makes stop in Austin

KUT host Nathan Bernier welcomes visitors to the StoryCorps trailer outside the Bullock museum on Monday.
KUT host Nathan Bernier welcomes visitors to the StoryCorps trailer outside the Bullock museum on Monday.

For more than a decade, the StoryCorps team has crisscrossed the country, collecting interviews with more than 80,000 Americans in partnership with National Public Radio.

Now, they’re looking to hear from Austinites. The mobile recording studio will be parked outside the Bob Bullock Texas State History Museum, at 1800 Congress Ave., through Jan. 30.

Signups begin Wednesday at 10 a.m. To get one of the 40-minute spots, call 1-800-850-4406 or visit

A donation of at least $25 per interview is requested, but not required.

Portions of some of the interviews, which can be on any topic, may air on local NPR affiliate 90.5 KUT-FM, either during local programming or during NPR’s national “Morning Edition” broadcast, the station said. All interviews – even those not aired – are archived at the American Folklife Center at the Library of Congress.

Participants also get a copy of the interview on a CD they can take with them.

“This trailer travels to all corners of the country,” said KUT host Nathan Bernier. “They’re trying to paint a portrait of America.”

While StoryCorps serves as a facilitator, it relies upon everyday people “who know and care about each other” to conduct the actual interviews.

“You get a level of intimacy you wouldn’t be able to obtain if a reporter was asking the questions,” Bernier said.

Former University of Texas women’s basketball coach Jody Conradt was among the first people to step into the StoryCorps trailer on Monday, its first day in town. She was interviewed by one of her former athletes, Amie Bradley.

“It was fun, a very comfortable environment,” Conradt said. “We just talked about how the women’s athletics program has developed on campus over the years. To have the opportunity to do that one-on-one made it special.”

Author: Gary Dinges

Gary Dinges covers bars/restaurants, movies, music, radio and TV -- plus a bunch of other fun stuff -- for the Austin American-Statesman.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s