How the Kids Killing Kids Radio National podcast came about

Well, so this is a lovely thing to get to lay out, and, in a way, lay down, at least for a good while.

One of the bigger arcs in my creative life this last half-decade was the Battalia Royale project, and the fall-out from it. Short version: me and Too Many Weapons headed over to the Philippines, worked with the Sipat Lawin Ensemble to adapt Koushon Takami’s Battle Royale for the stage, the production got out of hand, in a lot of interesting and headfucking ways.

So we produced the Kids Killing Kids show, to reflect on our role as writers in the whole affair. Out of that show, we were invited to take part in the 2014 Next Wave Festival to do an extended version, A Wake: Kids Killing Kids, bringing in five members of Sipat Lawin and their perspective.

We weren’t in any position to be able to keep on performing that show, and it would’ve got really morbid if we’d tried. But we wanted to find a way to document the story, and to be able to share it out more broadly to anyone who might be interested.

pic by Martin Vidanes

At this point, we were invited by Jesse Cox from ABC Radio National to try adapting it to the form of a podcast. And with his careful guidance, we went into the studio and recorded the show.

That didn’t work. And after a second rewrite, it still didn’t work. What had been clear as a story told on stage started to sound really weird as an audio piece.

At that point, Jesse threw out the original script entirely and proposed an alternative model. Rather than trying to replicate the Kids Killing Kids performance in radioplay format, he interviewed each of us – Jordan, Georgie, Sam and I – and then edited those interviews together to tell the story.

The result is a totally different take on the saga, and a lovely one from my perspective, because it finally shows up the differences in perspective between the four of us that got flattened out when we began work on Kids Killing Kids back in 2013.

Now it exists, and I’m delighted that it exists. So if you’re curious, and you’d like to have a listen, you can.

Or you can read the article we sketched out for the ABC website about it.

Either way, my massive thanks to Jesse for shepherding us through this. It’s a fascinating thing, making radio. I dug it heaps and I want more of it, more of it, all the time.

 too many weapons, wet.