Selected Shorts

Sunday nights from 6:00-7:00 p.m.

Selected Shorts presents some of the finest artists in American theater and screen reading short fiction by classic, contemporary and bold new writers. Selected Shorts is a weekly public radio show broadcast on over 130 stations to about 300,000 listeners. It is produced by Symphony Space and WNYC Radio, and distributed by Public Radio International.

Each program is recorded live at Peter Norton Symphony Space in Manhattan. The programs have featured works by master writers, from Chekhov to Wharton and Hemingway; stories by contemporary greats from John Updike to Alice Walker; and the fresh works of new literary talents, from Pulitzer Prize-winning Jhumpa Lahiri to promising newcomers like Rattawut Lapchararoensap and Etgar Keret.



  • Wednesday, November 26, 2014 4:07am
    Guest host Robert Sean Leonard presents a program of stories about revolution—social and personal. In “Homegirls on St. Nicholas Avenue,” read by Marsha Stephanie Blake, the writer Sonia Sanchez remembers when Malcolm X changed her life. Henry Dumas’ “Strike and Fade,” brings back the volatile Harlem of the 1960s. It’s read by Francois Battiste. A mild-mannered teacher and his activist mother are brought to life by Nurse Jackie star Edie Falco, in Charles Baxter’s “Fenstad’s Mother.”
  • Thursday, November 20, 2014 2:10pm
    Guest host Cynthia Nixon presents two stories about extreme love. In “Magic and Dread,” an excerpt from Jenny Offill’s novel Dept. of Speculation, a new mother is exhausted and exhilarated. The reader is Kaneza Schaal. Broadway star BD Wong reads the story of the doomed love affair between a Trojan warrior and Dido, the Queen of Carthage, from Virgil’s Aeneid.
  • Wednesday, November 12, 2014 6:12am
    Guest host Cynthia Nixon presents two stories about how the rich aren’t like you and me. In Jonathan Franzen’s “Ambition” a wealthy couple’s marriage of convenience unravels. It’s read by Edie Falco. And Mary Louise Parker brings to life an hilariously vain and selfish socialite in Dorothy Parker’s “From the Diary of a New York Lady.”
  • Thursday, November 6, 2014 11:44am
    Fantasy writer Neil Gaiman presents three stories about transformation. Rita Wolf reads Angela Carter’s haunting retelling of Little Red Riding Hood, “The Company of Wolves.” A son hears surprising things about his father in Gaiman’s “Adventure Story” read by John Cameron Mitchell, and Denis O’Hare reads Gaiman’s touching and unsettling tribute to a sci-fi master, “The Man Who Forgot Ray Bradbury.”
  • Friday, October 31, 2014 5:17am
    Neil Gaiman reads his story, “June Tale”, in which an exasperated ‘tween recounts the endless quarrelling of her parents, but between the lines, there seems to be love.