For some time now, Centrum has been reaching the arts community remotely through a different art form (in its own right): podcasting.
Their podcast network, Artists In Place, was launched in August of last year as a way to keep up with artists from a distance through interviews and conversations. The podcast hub became home to five individual podcast series featuring art in many forms. From music to literature to the visual arts, the series connect the Centrum arts community to listeners.
“Listeners would be surprised at the level of quality and dedication that our hosts and our guests are putting into it. I believe that what we’re doing with the podcasts is to try to keep the arts community alive in isolation,” said Joe Gillard, Centrum’s marketing manager who also wears the hat of the podcasts’ executive producer.
“The conversations that we’re having with people … some of the feedback we’re getting is that it’s great for them to be able to talk about their art and keep feeling like they’re connected to the community and connected to the world outside their own home,” he said.
All programs under the Centrum umbrella are different, but each of them aim to spotlight artists who are creating while sheltering in place.
From host Peter McCracken, “Crackin’ the Vault” explores the archives from five decades of Centum programming as a radio show on KPTZ 91.9FM Port Townsend. Choosing from Country Blues, Fiddle Tunes, Voice Works, Slide and Steel, and more, the series broadcasts some of the finest performances from more than 55 National Heritage Fellows.
Conversations with Artists-in-Residence can be heard in “ON A.I.R.” hosted by Michelle Hagewood. Creatives who have been involved in Centrum’s residency program invite listeners into their artistic processes and practices.
Centrum’s Arts and Lectures Series, “Communiversity,” is designed to inspire thought-provoking conversation throughout the community. A podcast series for the lifelong learner, it highlights a wide range of topics and features a number of experts. It is hosted by Robert Birman.
“From the Port Townsend Writers Conference,” hosted by George Marie, broadcasts the readings and lectures from the Port Townsend Writers Conference.
Learn about the musical journeys of Jazz leaders through the conversations presented on live-broadcast-turned-podcast, “Jazz Voicings.” Artistic director John Clayton hosts informal 90-minute sessions with the 35 musicians who comprise the Jazz Port Townsend faculty.
“What we want is to be able to safely have conversations remotely … high-quality conversations, high-quality podcasts that really let our arts community know what our artists and Centrum attendees are up to,” explained Gillard. “Open them up to this whole world of fascinating arts that have been happening over the years at Centrum.”
“I don’t think everybody knows the full extent of the fruits of the conferences and programs. Now we’re letting people see that,” he added.
Most of the Artists In Place podcasts have wrapped up their first seasons and are waiting to begin the next round of interviews, conversations, and musings.
Each podcast is produced in and broadcast from Fort Worden. To get your fix from the Centrum arts community, you can find the series on iTunes, Spotify, Stitcher, and Google Play. They are also available to stream from the Centrum website at centrum.org/artists-in-place/.