A podcast that explores the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the artistic community, created by Nate Davis, senior BFA in Acting major, and Jason Dernay, recent BFA in Acting and BA in Management alumnus, has received the support of a second CREATE! Micro-Grant.
The Art of Adaptation podcast features artists at different stages in their careers and lives and is the only project to have received funding from two separate CREATE! Micro-Grants. The first was awarded in 2020, which created the first season of the podcast that consisted of 10 episodes. The second micro-grant supported the second season, which added eight new episodes filled with content from various fields.
“Both of us love podcasts, which provide an extremely versatile format for personalities to really come through,” Davis said. “As performers by trade, we both love hearing stories being told by passionate people. More than anything else, we love hearing the story of the performance itself and the genuine love that runs between its participants.”
Each podcast episode is conducted in an interview-style format where Davis and Dernay discuss the personal and professional lives of artists, including their work, struggles, and triumphs during the pandemic.
“During a pandemic that crippled many artistic industries…We have also learned about the tenacity of artists to adapt and change while preserving their purpose, integrity, and quality.”Jason Dernay
“We learn about the changes in the individual lives and careers of artists, as well as look forward to a permanently changed world,” Dernay said. “An interview podcast is the most unfiltered and accessible option for artists to discuss their experiences and feelings.”
During the first season, Davis and Dernay invited 10 professional artists to join their podcast to discuss how the pandemic has affected their lives. This season allowed them to practice their recording, interviewing, and editing skills outside an academic setting.
“During a pandemic that crippled many artistic industries, it was wonderful to hear about the positive ramifications for equity in the arts, safety and treatment improvement for artists, and exploring new mediums,” Dernay said. “We have also learned about the tenacity of artists to adapt and change while preserving their purpose, integrity, and quality.”
After their first season wrapped in the fall of 2020, Davis and Dernay experienced many outside interruptions from their own personal lives and artistic work while working on season two. During the production work, both had full-time work commitments while Davis also attended school.
“It was very difficult to manage multiple artistic projects,” Davis said, “We had to narrow our original vision due to time constraints, but it created a polished, well-thought-out product.”
In the second season, the podcast continues to feature professionals in the fields of education, art, music, activism, playwriting, and production. This season compliments the first by starting out revisiting a guest from the previous season. After which, the podcast continues with new guests in each episode.
“To have the backing and amplification of the CREATE! Micro-Grant Program has been a wonderful experience that has allowed us to provide better quality work and produce better art.”Nate Davis
“Many of our interviewees were at similar ‘half-in, half-out’ experiences with their careers, trying to combat risk, longevity, immediate needs, and industry changes,” Dernay said. “Art is fluid; we have come to love our niches and established mediums, but changing the smallest things opens a world of possibilities.”
Money from the second micro-grant was used to purchase editing software and recording equipment and helped pay for website hosting and artistic compensation.
“We are honored that our work is considered important and impactful enough to be funded,” Davis said. “To have the backing and amplification of the CREATE! Micro-Grant Program has been a wonderful experience that has allowed us to provide better quality work and produce better art.”