14 episodes

A 12-part documentary podcast about the notorious free-love commune, Centrepoint. There are crimes. But this isn’t a whodunnit. It’s a whydunnit.

The Commune Stuff

    • True Crime
    • 4.8 • 59 Ratings

A 12-part documentary podcast about the notorious free-love commune, Centrepoint. There are crimes. But this isn’t a whodunnit. It’s a whydunnit.

    01: Open Day

    01: Open Day

    A free-love commune called Centrepoint springs up in the suburbs of 1970s New Zealand, devoted in equal measure to sex, group therapy, and its guru Bert Potter. What could possibly go wrong?
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    • 40 min
    02: Awkward Buggers

    02: Awkward Buggers

    Locals are fascinated by the sights and sounds of the sex commune next door. Founding members recall the optimism and excitement of Centrepoint’s early years – and the bizarre circumstances that led to the community’s first death.
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    • 55 min
    03: The Girl on the Lawn

    03: The Girl on the Lawn

    Who the hell was Bert? How Centrepoint’s leader went from buttoned-up businessman to morally transgressive guru. Meanwhile Barri and “Robert” are each witness to moments that reveal the darkness lurking inside the Centrepoint dream.
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    • 34 min
    04: Under the Carpet

    04: Under the Carpet

    Barri and “Robert” are haunted by the ugly truth about their commune, but they respond differently. Plus: a quick history of communes in Aotearoa, and the complex social forces that made Centrepoint possible.
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    • 38 min
    05: Invaders

    05: Invaders

    The ever-expanding Centrepoint commune goes to war: with its fed-up neighbours, with the local council and, thanks to Robert’s decision to speak out, the New Zealand Police.
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    • 51 min
    06: The Centrepoint Kids

    06: The Centrepoint Kids

    It’s the 1980s, and Centrepoint’s on a roll. Bert is investing in the booming stock market; and the head-count keeps rising. But some of the new arrivals at the commune have wild stories to tell.
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    • 54 min

Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5
59 Ratings

59 Ratings

TurtleWalrus ,

Fascinating content, presented with panache

The story was well told by a charming team. Being a podcast, the words, music and audio effects are what convey the story and those components are especially good here. The editing, the way the host would describe what someone was saying then we cut to the person speaking, that was very effective. Other podcasts sound like they are cobbled together from audio recorded in cars and those can be fine... But this podcast sounded very professional and was skillfully put together. Other podcasts have too much overlap, reusing audio from previous episodes. In this podcast that is done appropriately, not to pad the thing out but to remind us of these earlier statements, which may now have clearer meaning.
I especially liked the engaging and weird music and way the recordings of the cult leader would pop up and sound warped. Appropriate for the weird and warped world this took place in.

Bible_Nat ,

Unbiased and very well done

I stumbled across this series and ended up listening to all episodes in 24 hrs. Very thoroughly researched and informative. A cautionary tale heart breaking at times, but always interesting and thought provoking.

AnotherAustinRunner ,

Fascinating

Very well researched, with a wealth of interviews from former members who were involved. Incredible story.

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