Podcast drama for the young audience – How a dusty old genre came to life


An inspirational idea, that was before it’s time, a difficult sell and a history of ‘radio theatre’ which was in now way a good start were the background for the launch of the most successful youth programme on P3 radio, Sweden.

After trying to pitch an idea of a new radio series which would echo the success of new TV series such as Game of Thrones, Caroline Bratt Pouron found that she had a difficult job trying to get this new idea off the ground. Podcasting saved the idea, she said ‘We would never get another chance to do a youth drama at P3, we needed to connect ourselves with something new’. Podcasting has revolutionised radio theatre on radio in Norway. To develop a new youth crime drama the team needed a good writer, well known actors and something which sounded like the best of the TV series of today.

They brought in the best team who were inspired creating a new genre. It had to sound and feel real so they made it sound like a documentary and to assist in this they brought in a top documentary producer. It was so real sounding that people started to Google the murder of Jessica Lund – on the release of the newest podcast.

A great success there are now three P3 Series podcasts which are climbing the podcast charts, the latest being Dark Net. Famous writers are keen to get on board as the podcast hits the top 5 in the podcast chart. ‘A good podcast will find new audiences over time’, P3 Series have encouraged the commissioning of new podcasts – ghost stories, ET podcast, P3 history.

Inventing a new format can be about inspiration from everything, ‘podcast has it’s own strength – go out on a limb and be different…Digital strategies are important you have to work hard in this area’. The strategy in Sweden has been to look at audiences, the growth, the age of listeners. Now there is a variety of shows being tested. ‘Podcasts are receiving bigger budgets, the key is daring to be different’. 

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