Performing Arts

Weekly conversations and insights on the fine line between setback and success in the performing arts. Fellow creatives share their own journey as artists and the lessons learned along the way with host Patrick Oliver Jones, an actor who knows first-hand the ups and downs we all face.

Episodes

When it comes to the arts, I aim to give as wide a field of experience and opinion as possible here on the podcast. Yet for the most part I steer clear of politics. This is for a few reasons, but the main two are that I don’t want to add to the already divisive nature of some political activism and I want the content of this podcast to be as relevant today as it will be a year or more from now. Causes come and go, elected officials also change regularly (as does their rhetoric and positions on key issues). 

The closest I’ve come to venturing into the political realm is when I had on two of the founders of Be An Arts Hero, highlighting their efforts to lobby Congress for more funding and attention given to the arts here in America. So there is no doubt a relationship between the arts and politics, throughout history they have been both supporters and adversaries of one another. 

And recently there was a podcast that veered from its normal format to highlight the Politics of Culture that is inherent with so many works of art. The podcast is called Left, Right, and Center. And as the name implies they bring on guests and pundits from all sides to discuss the issues of the day. However, in this recent episode their guests are a television writer, a pop music songwriter, and a stage playwright. The discussions are led by Keli Goff, who is a journalist as well as a playwright and screenwriter herself. 

Of the four guests in this episode, I was particularly struck by the conversations with Stan Zimmerman, who wrote for the classic TV show The Golden Girls, and award-winning playwright Dominique Morisseau, who wrote the book for the hit Broadway musical Ain't Too Proud. They both share how their own writings have contributed to social conversations and have addressed important issues.

Like with any episode of Left, Right, and Center there will opinions you agree with and those you may not, but the discussions are nonetheless thoughtful and in-depth.

Stay tuned for the next recommendation, which will be my year-end pick for the best podcast to take us into the new year. Until then take care, and subscribe to this podcast wherever you listen to audio.

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After our conversation on the previous episode, Jaime talks about the process of voting on songs and albums for the Grammys, and then he answers the Final Five. He shares his love of Law & Order and his dream to work with Lin-Manuel Miranda as well as what he learns from those who are humble.

The time and expense needed to bring these guests and conversations to you each week is sometimes challenging but always rewarding. Please consider buying me a coffee to support this work that goes into each episode.

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For the next few weeks WINMI is going to be highlighting some amazing Hispanic artists, ranging from composers and dancers to actors and singers. And it's all in honor of National Hispanic Heritage Month. 

In addition to these interviews I’ll be showcasing important creatives in Hispanic history. It’ll be a chance for us to learn about the wonderful artists who have made such an impact not only in Hispanic communities but to our nation as a whole. 

And so we begin Hispanic Heritage Month with Jaime Lozano, a native of Monterey, Mexico. As a composer his works have been produced Off-Broadway, regionally here in the US, and internationally in France, Germany, England, and of course his home country of Mexico. Jaime has also taken on the roles of arranger, music director, and orchestrator, in addition to adapting, producing, and directing the Spanish world premiere of Jason Robert Brown’s THE LAST FIVE YEARS in 2006 and SONGS FOR A NEW WORLD in 2005.

And it was around that time that Jaime came to New York to study at NYU's Tisch School of the Arts. He's been on quite the journey and it's a fascinating story of an immigrant artist here in America.

Follow Jaime: Website / Instagram / Twitter 

Follow WINMI: Instagram / Twitter / Website 

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Music in this episode:

"Yellow Light District" by Lobo Loco.
"Kitty in the Window" by Podington Bear.
"Basketliner" by Blue Dot Sessions.
Savage, a musical by Tommy Newman and Jaime Lozano, performed and recorded at University of Alabama in Birmingham.
"Una Historia sin Final Concierto" by Jaime Lozano.
"Smooth Actor" by Podington Bear.
"Night Emotions" by Lobo Loco.
"Ayer" by Gloria and Emilio Estefan (Karaoke Track).

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The process of getting an idea, a story from conception to production to finally being onstage or onscreen can be a rather lengthy process. Hamilton took seven years and La La Land was almost nine. Alex Pires is another one of those with plenty of ideas. He’s an actor who came to NYC with a mission to not only act but to write as well. But as we know having the idea is just the first step on a long journey towards actually seeing it come to life.
His comedy web series P's in a Pod released its Pilot Episode in January 2019, but the rest of the seven-episode season didn't come out till April 2020. He talks about that long journey as well as some of the serious subjects addressed on this funny show: stereotypes, racism, depression, and even germaphobia.
 

Follow Alex: Website / Instagram / Twitter 

Follow WINMI: Instagram / Twitter 

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Thanks for coming back to join me and Jason Odell Williams for the final five! This is a bonus episode to the conversation we had previously, covering topics and five specific questions we didn’t address on the last episode. Today, Jason talks about how his teachers inspired him and how he's still learning to process and handle criticism and feedback. 

Take the survey & join the WINMI newsletter - whyillnevermakeit.com 

 

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The time and expense needed to bring these guests and conversations to you each week is sometimes challenging but always rewarding. Please consider buying me a coffee to support this work that goes into each episode.

 
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Jason Odell Williams is an award-winning playwright and Emmy-nominated television producer. But his first love was acting...until it wasn't. In this episode he shares that journey from saying the words to writing them.

We specifically talk about his plays Handle With Care and Church & State, both of which were produced by his wife (and former WINMI guest) Charlotte Cohn. He opens up about his difficulty with taking criticism and how different writing is from the stage to small screen, especially when those shows involve true crime or brain teasers.

Take the survey & join the WINMI Newsletter - whyillnevermakeit.com

Follow Jason: Instagram / The New Play Exchange 

Follow WINMI: Instagram / Twitter / Blog 

Donate to the podcast: https://ko-fi.com/winmipodcast 

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WINMI is a Top 20 Theater Podcast thanks to you!  https://blog.feedspot.com/theatre_podcasts/ 

 
 
Music used in this episode: 
"Small Hours" "Dim" "Arrival of the Geese" "Daybreak" and "The Gloaming" by Chad Crouch is licensed under an Attribution-NonCommercial 3.0 International License.
 
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After our conversation on the previous episode, Brian answers the Final Five, talking about software engineering and his dream to fix CHESS as well as lessons learned from Elizabeth Gilbert.

Do you have other ideas for Final Five questions? Let me know at contact.winmipodcast.com.

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The time and expense needed to bring these guests and conversations to you each week is sometimes challenging but always rewarding. Please consider buying me a coffee to support this work that goes into each episode.

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Featuring the third composer of the season, Brian Lowdermilk is a fantastic contemporary songwriter who's found a great deal of success from the internet. And in this day and age where not much theater is happening onstage, that bodes well for both Kerrigan & Lowdermilk. 

Brian (they/them, she/her) shares the nuts and bolts of writing and collaborating on musicals (and is joined by Kait for part of the interview). Then we get into more personal matters of gender identity and theater's place in the LGBTQ community. It's an in-depth, personal conversation with a talented and insightful composer. 

Follow Brian: Instagram / YouTube / SoundCloud 

Follow WINMI: Instagram / Twitter / Website / Medium 

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WINMI is a Top 20 Podcast thanks to you!  https://blog.feedspot.com/theatre_podcasts/ 

Reach out with any questions or comments: contact.winmipodcast.com 
 
The time and expense needed to bring these guests and conversations to you each week is sometimes challenging but always rewarding. Please consider buying me a coffee to support the work that goes into each episode. 
 
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Brian's music featured in this episode: 
"Run Away with Me (Instrumental)" - "How to Return Home" - "Avalanche" - "Say the Word" - "Five and Half Minutes" - "Not a Love Story" - "Run Away with Me (sung by Brian at 54 Below)" 
 
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After our conversation on the previous episode, Cris answers the Final Five. He shares why he'd love to teach and his dream to be in CATS as well as what he learned from Tyler Perry.

Do you have other ideas for Final Five questions? Let me know at contact.winmipodcast.com.

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The time and expense needed to bring these guests and conversations to you each week is sometimes challenging but always rewarding. Please consider buying me a coffee to support this work that goes into each episode.

 
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In this longer episode than normal, I am honored and grateful to have this enormously gifted artist on the show. Cris Eli Blak may only be a senior in college, but he has wisdom far beyond his years to share with all of us.

From thoughts on the current racial tensions gripping this country to how theater can be a voice in the midst of it, Cris shares from the heart and from his art. He opens up about his own challenges and struggles as a writer, how growing up without a father affected him, and the type of writing and storytelling he wants to give the world.

This is a touching and moving episode that will leave you with a better understanding of where we are and a brighter hope for where we can ultimately go.

Topics covered in this episode:

 - Do The Right Thing 30 Years Later 

 - Spike Lee on HuffPost Live 

 - The Brother's Survivor short film 

 - The World Changes Through Art 

 - Our Duty to Confront Racism in Theater Industry 

 - "Like Father, Like Son" on the Logue Lounge 

 - All-White Production Of HAIRSPRAY In Texas Raises Eyebrows 

 - Should There Be All-White Productions of HAIRSPRAY? 

 

Follow Cris: Instagram / YouTube / Medium 

Follow WINMI: Instagram / Twitter / Website / Medium

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WINMI is a Top 20 Podcast thanks to you! https://blog.feedspot.com/theatre_podcasts/ 

Reach out with any questions or comments: contact.winmipodcast.com 
 
The time and expense needed to bring these guests and conversations to you each week is sometimes challenging but always rewarding. Please consider buying me a coffee to support this work that goes into each episode. 
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