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The Sound Kitchen

Celebrating women on international Women’s Day!

Audio 26:42
The Sound Kitchen
The Sound Kitchen iStockphoto

This week on The Sound Kitchen, you’ll hear the answer to the question about the agreement signed by the French and German governments in January. It’s a veritable banquet on The Sound Kitchen this week: there’s a special salute to International Women’s Day by RFI English’s women listeners, loads of listener news, a new club to welcome, music by request from Ralf Urbanczyk.


Hello everyone! Welcome to The Sound Kitchen weekly podcast, published every Saturday. You’ll hear the winner’s names announced and the week’s quiz question, along with all the other ingredients you have grown accustomed to: your letters and essays, “On This Day”, quirky facts and news, interviews, and great music … so be sure and listen every week.

Wouldn’t you like to hear your voice on The Sound Kitchen? I know I would! Get out your telephones and record what we call “drops” – because we “drop” them in the show here and there - they’re the little “You’re listening to The Sound Kitchen, and Susan Owensby is cooking” things we sprinkle in the show. Many of these are from listeners, and since I’m always hungry, I want more! Here’s what you can say:

“I am (your name) from (your country) and you’re listening to The Sound Kitchen on Radio France International.”

“I am (your name) from (your country) and you’re listening to The Sound Kitchen, where you never know what you’ll be served!”

“I am (your name) from (your country) - you’re listening to The Sound Kitchen, and Susan Owensby is cooking.”

Or be creative and make up your own – why not? Samuel Francis from Jamaica sent me one that said “yah man” – I play it often!

Send them to me as either Mp3 or WAV files, at

Paris Live, our afternoon news broadcast, wants in on the action, too! You can also send recordings of you saying the above, but instead of (obviously) "The Sound Kitchen", say "Paris Live". We'll have your voices all over the English Service airwaves - which is great!

I would also like to hear from you about your little moments of joy. Small, daily things: a beautiful sunset, a baby’s laugh. Add that as a very nice ingredient to our communal cooking – let’s share the joy! In these crazy times, we all need it … write to me at

For our DX enthusiast and shortwave listener friends: I am sad to announce we no longer have a shortwave frequency; we have severe budget constraints which no longer permit us to broadcast via shortwave.

You can still hear us on WRN. As you know, we now broadcast only 1 hour per day, Monday – Friday, from 14:00 to 15:00 UTC/GMT.

For North America: WRN broadcasts the daily RFI English programme three times a day from Monday to Friday, from 06:00 to 06:59, from 10:00 to 10:59 and from 16:00 to 16h59 UTC/GMT.

For Africa and Asia: WRN broadcasts the daily RFI English programme three times a day from Monday to Friday, from 06:00 to 06:59, from 10:00 to 10:59 and from 16:00 to 16h59 UTC/GMT.

For Europe: WRN broadcasts the daily RFI English programme three times a day from Monday to Friday, from 07:00 to 07:50, from 12:00 to 12:59 and from 20:00 to 20:59 UTC/GMT

In Paris, you can hear us on World Radio Paris on DAB+, Monday to Friday from 15:00 to 15:59 UTC/GMT as well as Tuesday through Saturday from 07:00 to 07:59 UTC/GMT.

To listen to our features, go to our website and click on “Features”. You’ll see all of our features (now podcasts only). You can either listen directly, or subscribe and receive them directly in your e-mail inbox. Don’t give up on us!

“My Favorite Music” is a nice – and important! - new ingredient to our communal cooking … it’s your musical requests from a certain genre or type of music. We started with your favorite female singers, then we moved onto men, and now, it’s your favorite instrumental music. It can be a band or a group, with or without singer, and we’ll play your requests throughout March and April. Write to me at, and be sure you include your city and country in your note – along with a link and a short translation, if you can. Share why the music is important to you, please! I think it is quite nice to share your favorite music as well as your thoughts about it – thanks to Daniel Singleton, the RFI English Head of Service, for the idea!

This week’s request is from RFI Listeners Club member Ralf Urbanczyk from Eisleben, Germany.

Teachers, take note!  I save postcards and stamps from all over the world to send to you for your students. If you would like stamps and postcards for your students, just write and let me know.The address

Did you know there’s an RFI English newsletter? If you subscribe, you'll receive our newsletter every day. Just click on Newsletters,fill out the form, and you'll stay up-to-date with RFI English.

A hearty welcome to our brand-new official RFI Club, the 12- member Shetu RFI Listeners Club in Naogaon, Bangladesh. Sultan Mahmud Sarker is the president. Welcome, welcome, and welcome again! We all look forward to hearing about your club’s activities and looking at your photos – rendez-vous on the RFI English Clubs Facebook page!

RFI Clubs: Be sure to always include Audrey Iattoni ( from our Listener Relations department on all your RFI Club correspondence. Remember to copy me ( when you write her so that I know what is going on, too. N.B. You do not need to send her your quiz answers!

We’ve made a Facebook page just for you, the RFI English Clubs. It is a closed group, so when you apply to join, be sure you include the name of your RFI Club and your membership number. Everyone can look at it, but only members of the group can post on it. If you haven’t yet asked to join the group, go to the Facebook link above and fill out the questionnaire !!!!! (if you do not answer the questions, I click “decline”).

Are you interested in forming an official RFI Club, or transforming your existing club into an official RFI Club? Click on the link to find out how!

This week’s quiz: On 27 January, I asked you a question about France and Germany. Earlier that week, the two countries signed an accord intended to deepen ties between the two countries. I asked you to write in with the key points of the treaty, signed on 22 January between Germany’s Angela Merkel and France’s Emmanuel Macron.

The answer was on the RFI English website, in the article “Macron and Merkel renew Franco-German bond”. There’s a “mutual defense clause in the event of either country being attacked; France will back Germany’s long-running campaign for a permanent seat on the UN Security Council, and the two countries will seek to harmonise rules for military equipment exports.

Paris and Berlin also say they want to create a Franco-German economic region with common rules.

But a major focus of the treaty is to boost ties between the two peoples.”

We share a 450 kilometre common border after all, and many people cross daily to work or study or for social reasons – or like German RFI Listeners Club member Helmut Matt, who lives on the border – to shop for yummy French food! The two countries are looking into a new citizen’s fund, which would support cross border initiatives - including bilingual childcare centres and public transport links.

The winners are: all women this week, and three are from Bangladesh. There’s Hasina Zaman Hasi from the RFI Amour Fan Club in Rajshahi; Rabeya Begam, a member of the Nilshagor RFI Fan Club in Nilphamari, and Anjana Parvin, the secretary of the Shetu RFI Radio Fan Club in Naogaon. There are two sisters from Assam, India on the winners list this week, and both are members of the RFI Listeners Club: Usha Hazarika and Karobi Hazarika.

Congratulations winners!

Here’s the music you heard on this week’s program: “Respect” written by  Otis Redding and sung by Aretha Franklin; Rimsky-Korsakov:"The Flight of the Bumblebee";"The Chariot Procession” from the film score for Ben Hur, composed by Miklos Rosza; the traditional Bavarian song “Zsammg'spuit” performed by Kerschbam Zithermusi, and Special Star”, co-written by Kevin Botha, John Leyden, Siphu Bhengu, Alan Lazar, and Mduduzi Magwaza, performed by Mango Groove, lead vocalist Claire Johnston.

Do you have a musical request? Send it to

This week’s question ... You'll have to listen to the show to participate. You have until 8 April to enter this week's quiz; the winners will be announced on the 13 April podcast. When you enter, be sure you send your postal address in with your answer, and if you have one, your RFI Listeners Club membership number.

Send your answers to:


Susan Owensby

RFI – The Sound Kitchen

80, rue Camille Desmoulins

92130 Issy-les-Moulineaux



By text … You can also send your quiz answers to The Sound Kitchen mobile phone. Dial your country’s international access code, or “ + ”, then  33 6 31 12 96 82. Don’t forget to include your mailing address in your text – and if you have one,your RFI Listeners Club membership number.

To find out how you can win a special Sound Kitchen prize, click here:

To find out how you can become a member of the RFI Listeners Club, or to form your own official RFI Club, click here:


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