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THE ECCO

A time and place to playfully explore the world of narrative audio, documentary work & storytelling  through sound

WHAT'S THE ECCO?

"THE ECCO" is a (soon to be launched) international non-commercial initiative designed to tug at the boundaries of the world of audio storytelling, journalism, and documentary work. We bring together talents in different parts of the world — journalists, sound designers, audio producers, sound artists, & writers— all united by a common goal: to push themselves and each other out of their work-related comfort zones and explore the different shapes audio documentaries can take, where they may intersect with art and what the impact of such playful exploration can have.

What is THE ECCO? 

The heart of it

"THE ECCO" orchestrates immersive retreats set away from the cities in nature, where a curated group of talents collaborate, experiment, and support each other in crafting audio projects that are as diverse as they are profound. It's here, away from the distractions of daily life, that participants can fully immerse themselves in the art of audio storytelling, drawing inspiration from the environment and each other. 

Who can participate?

Audio creators, journalists, reporters, podcast producers, and sound designers can apply to be part of an upcoming cohort (once the dates are announced). Depending on the skills, interests, and perspectives each of them brings, we at THE ECCO will curate a group of ca. 10 people who we think will benefit from learning from each other. The goal is to compose a group of people who can benefit from each other. That means cohorts will include some folks well versed in the artistic world of audio, some are highly skilled writers and journalists, some might be just at the beginning of their careers, and others smack in the middle of it.
 

We believe that if you bring the right people together, people with different perspectives, ages, skill levels, cultural and ethnic backgrounds, genders, and abilities – it can bring about really special pieces. 

The Retreat

The cohort will pre-discuss a theme for the new round and then come together in a location in nature to spend 4-7 days with each other. This is NOT a fully organized trip with a predetermined itinerary, but rather somewhat of an "unconference". The cohort will need to organize itself and design its own program according to their needs. 

They can help each other workshop ideas, listen to tape, record tape, show each other how to sound design something – anything is possible. 

There are two components that everyone partakes in: Short writing sessions each morning based on prompts, and listening sessions in the evenings. 

There may also be small guest appearances and discussion rounds by creators we admire or/and have questions for. 

Participants pay for the retreats themselves (On top of that, we are currently looking for funding to lower the cost of these trips and to be able to pay those participants, who produce something that THE ECCO will publish). Participants will cook for each other and organize anything else they might want to do. 

It's a way to make new connections without having to "network" - something many solo flying freelancers in the industry are struggling with.
 

After the trip

After the retreat, the cohort will have a month to create audio pieces of no longer than 10 minutes, which they will be workshopping with an editor from THE ECCO. Each edition of THE ECCO will culminate in a live listening event that'll feature the new works. These events are called THE ECCO Sessions. Every participant who chooses to publish a piece with THE ECCO will also be featured on the website. (The goal is to find funding and pay people for their featured works, but that's tbd.) 

In the meantime, the public is also invited to be part of THE ECCO and contribute to the Sessions by submitting a maximum 5-minute-long audio piece under the same theme by a certain deadline. The most outstanding 2-3 pieces submitted by the public will be showcased during the corresponding ECCO Sessions event, and the makers will get featured on the website and social media.

THE ECCO Sessions

A celebration of sound and storytelling –  an evening of collective listening. As the culminating event for each of our retreat themes, "THE ECCO Sessions" serves not just as a showcase but as a vibrant community gathering, celebrating the power of audio storytelling.

An international project

The concept and idea of "THE ECCO" is designed to travel. The goal is to reach journalists and audio communities around the globe. So, we may have THE ECCO events in the Middle East, Latin America, across Africa, South Asia, Southeast Asia, Great Britain, all over Europe and of course in the US and Canada.

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 Coming up

We're working on some exciting things: Future editions of THE ECCO, more events, workshops, mentorship programs, and much more. Stay tuned on our social channels on Instagram and Twitter, Also: We'd like to make it possible to pay people for the works they create for THE ECCO. That means: If you want to support THE ECCO with a small donation, find us on Ko-Fi.

 


 

And if you or your organization like to sponsor an upcoming edition of THE ECCO, or contribute in other ways financially to playfully exploring the boundaries of journalism, documentaries and art, please get in touch at info[at]theecco.org . 

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