TOM FOX – BUILDING NEW MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS

Tom Fox at Hackoustic August 2017

Tom Fox uses recycled and reclaimed materials to make musical instruments, sound machines and interactive installations. He has performed or talked at The Tate Modern, The Royal College of Music, The Royal College of Art, and many European music tech festivals. I interviewed Tom about what goes into his performances, his vulpestruments and his organisation Hackoustic – a London-based group that promotes original sound artists, music technologists and instrument builders.

Leslie: Can you tell us about the simplest instruments you build, please. Continue reading TOM FOX – BUILDING NEW MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS

ART, PASSION & ACTION

Hilary Cox Condron

I interviewed Cambridge-based participatory artist Hilary Cox Condron who describes herself as, “Passionate about using creativity, culture, stories and collaboration to connect, strengthen and shape communities.” Hilary works with many groups across the city. In her own words she has, “A true commitment to equality, diversity, social inclusion, the environment and place-making through the arts.” The Chair of Cambridge United once introduced Hilary as, “Community glue.”

Leslie: You’re a community artist. Can you tell us about where that passion came from and the key milestones on the way to developing your current work? Continue reading ART, PASSION & ACTION

SCIENCE, MAGIC & KNOWING THE UNKNOWABLE

Maxine Lipner out west

Maxine Lipner interviewed about her professional writing life and how her beliefs were turned upside down by a friend’s uncanny pre-death predictions… For 30 years, Maxine has successfully written features, profiles, interviews and health and business pieces. Combining ghostwriting for doctors with commercial pieces, her fields have been largely scientific and rational. All this changed when Maxine set out to write a memoir entitled Mystic Days in the Ivy: What my Psychic Friend Shared About the Future Beyond Her Own Death. Continue reading SCIENCE, MAGIC & KNOWING THE UNKNOWABLE

LISETTE AUTON DOES STUFF WITH WORDS

Lisette sits on a stool on stage in front of a mic, spotlight on her, left arm reaching up. Photo by Ken Drew

I interviewed Lisette Auton, disabled writer, activist, spoken word artist, theatre maker & creative practitioner. Lisette has been chosen as a Penguin RHUK WriteNow Mentee, one of ten out of 1700 applicants. She often works with groups that are underrepresented in the mainstream – for instance with disabled people, and in her work with Middlesbrough Institute of Modern Art celebrating older people. As guest editor for Disability Arts Online, Lisette used the platform to focus on Northern Emerging Disabled Artists. Lisette says about her spoken word performances: “I deliver passionate, high octane, physical pieces about disability, mental health, politics and quite often also my freckles.” Continue reading LISETTE AUTON DOES STUFF WITH WORDS

SAFE FOOD & WATER FOR ALL

Bertin working in the fields

I interviewed Bertin Kalimbiro from Goma, in Congo, about Programme d’appui à la résilience et adaptation face au climat (PARAC), the environmental organisation he founded, and the ways his community are coping with climate change.

Leslie: How is the ecological and climate crisis affecting where you live?

Bertin: For more than two decades now we’ve experienced an unprecedented disturbance of the growing seasons. In the past we had the dry season from June to August and then January to February, while the rainy season took up the rest of the months. But now we can’t distinguish these seasons, because most of the year is in drought. Continue reading SAFE FOOD & WATER FOR ALL

STAGING CHANGE: ECO-THEATRE & FELT KNOWLEDGE

Alice Body – Sustainable Fringe

I interviewed Alice Boyd who works on improving environmental sustainability in the theatre/entertainment industry though the arts organisation Staging Change. Besides founding and co-directing Staging Change, Alice is also a theatre maker and sound designer with Poltergeist Theatre. She believes in reducing the carbon footprint of performances and bringing people together in a positive, sometimes humorous way, to face the truth about climate breakdown and bio-diversity loss.

The arts is the difference between knowing knowledge and feeling knowledgeAlison Tickell. Continue reading STAGING CHANGE: ECO-THEATRE & FELT KNOWLEDGE

HAYLEY SLEIGH – MARKETING, CREATIVE WRITING, CHARITY WORK & END THE STIGMA

Hayley Sleigh

Hayley Sleigh is unusual in embracing the worlds of marketing, creative writing, charitable action and #endthestigma. I asked Hayley about her MA in Creative Writing, her compositional methods, her work with the voluntary sector and her experience of anxiety/depression.

Hayley has helped major corporations with their branding and marketing while raising money for people who are homeless or affected by cancer. She has also had articles published in The Fiction Pool, The Riff Raff, Dear Damsels and Time to Change. Continue reading HAYLEY SLEIGH – MARKETING, CREATIVE WRITING, CHARITY WORK & END THE STIGMA

MATTHEW SCHMOLLE: CHANGING THE WORLD THROUGH THEATRE

The Ugly One by Marius Von Mayenburg – by Buckland Theatre, produced by Matthew Schmolle.

I interviewed theatre producer Matthew Schmolle, who specialises in producing and staging co-created community performance, new writing, street theatre and agitprop. Matthew has put on shows for his own companies The Working Party and Matthew Schmolle Productions as well as producing projects for The Old Vic, Old Vic New Voices, ice&fire, The Big House, Blackboard Theatre, The Spectators Guild, Finborough, Park Theatre, Tobacco Factory Theatre, Theatre Royal Stratford East, Emergency Exit Arts and Apples and Snakes. He also works as a consultant for the charity Open Door, who are fighting to level the playing field in access to training in theatre arts, and for theatre company Not Too Tame. Continue reading MATTHEW SCHMOLLE: CHANGING THE WORLD THROUGH THEATRE

Author and Poet