Hey Pollywogs! Colleen here. Today I'm here to share an interview with Bri Clarke. Bri is a dance artist who founded a podcast called (Art)versations to host conversations about the arts. (Art)versations shines a light on the creative process, amplifies the voices of new generation artists in particular, and promotes a dialogue between and about the arts. It's important work she's doing, and because Bri spends a lot of time listening, and sharing the perspectives of other people, we offered Bri the Frog in Hand blog as a platform to talk about the (Art)versations podcast. You can listen below through Spotify. Most recently, Bri released a Bonus episode of highlights from her fourth season. Enjoy, and thanks to Bri for taking the time to talk with us!
Colleen (C): Bri, who are you?! (laughs) Bri (B): Hello! My name is Bri Clarke and I am a performer, choreographer, and dance teacher. I moved to Toronto to gain a BFA in Performance Dance and I continue to freelance for multiple dance and theatre collectives. When I am not working, I host and produce a podcast called (Art)versations, with 70+ episodes to date.
C: Can you tell our readers about your (Art)versations podcast? What can people expect when they tune in?
B: (Art)versations is a meditative conversation about the artistic process. Each episode, a featured artist will sit down with me over Zoom or in-person for an unedited yet informative chat about making art.
C: There are lots of podcasts out there - why did you start (Art)versations? What gap does it fill in our conversations about the arts?
B: I originally began (Art)versations as a platform for dancers to speak about their experiences because I feel that many dancers are not provided enough space to use their voices. Then, it quickly became about allowing all artists the microphone. Actors, singers, photographers, designers… storytellers. When it comes to making art, there is always a story to tell along the way to creation. The podcast serves to bridge the gap between the artistic process, the final product, and its infinite transformations. My main goal with this podcast is to invite consumers into the makings of an upcoming or recent project, connecting the artist’s personal experiences with the listener.
C: Can you share a memorable, surprising, or inspiring moment from one of your episodes?
B: Besides the episodes with Frog in Hand reps - *wink wink* Colleen Snell (Season 3, Ep. 15) and *nudge nudge* Ankita Alemona (Season 4, Ep. 7) - the 8th episode of Season 4 with Kevin Howe was very memorable. Kevin is a stage & screen dancer and a long-time mentor of mine. In the episode, Kevin spoke about working for Disney, and he revealed that his director treated him and the rest of the ensemble dancers with outstanding respect. Being able to document that experience and provide Kevin the chance to reflect was incredibly exciting. I hope the podcast can continually act as a safe place for artists to share.
C: You've spoken to a lot of new generation artists on your podcast. Are there commonalities in the experiences they've shared? Why do you think people need to hear more about the experiences of young artists?
B: So thrilled to answer these questions. As a fellow emerging artist, I know how difficult it can be to get the word out about my projects. There is a thread through all the artists I have spoken with: they want to be heard. The making of the art is already an emotional rollercoaster in itself, let alone the finished piece of art. I believe bringing listeners into the process, through long-form conversation, might encourage them to return for future projects. The listeners may feel more inclined to stay connected with the artist, after hearing about the ins and outs of their developing methodology. As well, we can reveal a bit of the magic behind a project, without devaluing the actual experience!
C: Thanks for your thoughtful answers, and for all of the advocacy you are doing for artists everywhere. What do you have coming up next with (Art)versations? Where can people learn more?
B: All 10 episodes of Season 4 are currently available PLUS a bonus Best Of Season 4 episode will be released on Monday, December 13th. You can visit the official podcast website or search “(Art)versations Podcast” on your preferred podcast platform. Tell your other art-loving friends to tune in and join this growing community!
C: Anything else you'd like to tell share?
B: If you are an artist with a story to tell from behind one of your projects, contact firstname.lastname@example.org with your name and field of art. I am interested in partnering with you to open the door for conversations about your artistic endeavours. Let’s collab!
LEARN MORE ABOUT (ART)VERSATIONS!
Find the podcast on Spotify
OFFICIAL WEBSITE - this page shows every platform where the podcast is available!
PODCAST INSTAGRAM: @artversationspod
BRI’S INSTAGRAM: @brianna_clarkee