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Playlist: Matt Larson's Portfolio

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Two women, a Frenchman, and Seth Rogen walk into a bank

From Matt Larson | 21:18

A piece about the genetics and marketing behind sperm donation


Christina and her partner Ellie want a baby, and together they decide to find a donor through one of the largest sperm banks in the country: the California Cryobank.


Christina describes the daunting task of narrowing down the traits she wanted for her child, while a representative of the California Cryobank talks about the programs they designed to make that process easier for their clients. One particular program, where clients can choose a donor that looks like their favorite male celebrity, has become extremely popular.

The piece features interviews with Christina and her infant son, Oscar, as well as Scott Brown of the California Cryobank. The narration was provided by Matt Larson.

Mundane superpowers

From Matt Larson | 10:43

Everyone has a mundane superpower. It's just a question of digging deep and finding your inner superhero.

Mundane_superpower_small A man-on-the-street style piece where people reveal their true superhero identities. Whether it's packing a car to capacity or X-ray vision, there is a hero in us all.

Once upon a unicycle

From Matt Larson | 22:46

A group of 4th and 5th graders prove themselves on the basketball court. On unicycles.


Mr. Smith was just your average elementary school gym teacher, but in 1977 he decided to try an experiment: he gave a group of 4th and 5th graders a couple of unicycles and offered to stay after school to teach them to ride. Not long after, this group was performing for school assemblies and college basketball half-time shows. The basic skill of riding forward had been augmented with backwards riding, belly riding, and even one-legged riding. A routine was established, and props like teeter totters, balance beams, and hula hoops were added. This is the story of Mr. Smith and the 1800 kids whom he taught to ride.

Dump start

From Matt Larson | 14:21

We explore the San Francisco Dump and discover what working artists, a falconer, and school children already know: trash can be just the beginning.

Dump start
Matt Larson

Bench_curl_small The San Francisco dump processes 12-14 hundred tons of trash each day. It's a problem of such great scale that they needed more than just scientists and engineers thinking about how to deal with waste. In 1990, the dump turned to local artists to answer the question: what else can we do with trash? Rebecca Pfiffner and Matt Larson get a guided tour of the dump from employee Micah Gibson, and talk to former artist in residence Scott Oliver about the nature of trash.

How to catch a lab rat

From Matt Larson | 21:59

A real-life story of scientific fraud


After months of struggling to reproduce scientific results from another lab, Lawrence began to suspect that his collaborators weren't being completely honest about their findings. He decides to visit the lab to investigate, and unwittingly steps into a scientific game of cat-and-mouse. Will Lawrence lose faith in the science, or will the scientific method help him uncover the truth?