Comments by Katie Ball

Comment for "A Missile Base Called Home"

User image

Review of A Missile Base Called Home

This piece was a joy to listen to and sounded really effortless to me. (Since I can assume it didn't simply spring forth from the ether I can't think of any higher compliment). The producer successfully treads a fine balance between being the informative newsy guy and the funny kid at the back of the bus.

Favorite moment was the drum circle with the fife and drum tune, followed by the producer chiming in and echoing exactly what I was thinking. Dead-on comic delivery without remotely sounding snarky.

And just an interesting story all the way around.

Nicely done!


User image

Review of Put to the Test (Six Part Documentary News Series) (deleted)

This was a thoroughly engaging series, with the play between opposing views placed evenly throughout the works. It was sad - sad because there don't seem to be any real clear answers on how to help fix the existing problems found in public schools. And if the piece had leaned too heavily in either camp (Pro or against standardized testing and No Child Left Behind) then it wouldn't have been nearly as effective as it was.

It was easy to care for these two students and the teacher because the listener was given far more than a surface glimpse of their characters. That, combined with pragmatic narration delivered with an insider's tone, audio that takes a listener there and unobtrusive editing made for a very compelling piece.

Comment for "Not All Bad things"

User image

Review of Not All Bad things

I've been looking at this piece for a while and avoiding it because I just wasn't ready to go there yet. I'm glad I finally took the plunge. It's really bittersweet to me because in a number of ways Peyton is much older and stronger than a 12-year-old and in other ways she still has an innocence to her, like when she put so much store in a Thanksgiving return. The editing was well-done, very unobtrusive. And though this obviously covered a lot of ground and took a while to create it doesn't have anything slick about it and I'm thankful for that.

Why I didn't hear this on NPR first I don't really understand but it deserves to be there, if only to remind us that we don't have a lot of choices in regards to our upbringing but we do have choices in how we deal with it and in what we decide to take from it. Peyton doesn't want to be forgotten and she won't be.

Comment for "A Musician's Life: Alejandro Escovedo"

User image

Review of A Musician's Life: Alejandro Escovedo

This piece was very nicely done. Kudos, first and foremost, for the subject matter--too few know about this wonderful performer. The song choices were excellent and I particularly liked the tone, like the producer had handed Escovedo a microphone and then said, "Okay, I'll leave you to yourself to talk this out," which made for a very personal and intimate feel (and it was a nice parallel to the artist's music).
It was very enjoyable to hear and it makes me want to hear more... maybe a longer version might come around too?