Miller Aud-cast Episode 51: Jacqueline Guzda

Hello and welcome to Miller Aud-cast, the Missouri Review podcast where we listen to and discuss the finalists for the 2021 Miller Audio Prize. Thank you for being here, wherever here is, for episode 51, featuring the latest finalist for the 2021 Miller Audio Prize in Audio Documentary, “Behind the Curtain: The War for the West,” from Jacqueline Guzda.

Jackie Guzda is an Associate Professor at Western Connecticut State University where she creates Behind the Curtain, an investigative documentary podcast about current and political events. BTC began as a political comedy podcast, evolved into an interview format and finally in its current form. It will someday return to its roots but for now Jackie serves as host of Lifelong Learners, a vlog/podcast in which she interviews amazing movers and shakers in the Educational Technology world.

Learn more about her at LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com/in/jacqueline-gu…a-ph-d-ba41a52a/

Episode 52 will be here for you before you know it, so keep a watchful ear and listening eye about you. Thanks as always to the outgoing Missouri Review contest editor, Bailey Boyd, and to Patricia Miller, for her generous support for the Miller Audio Prize.

BE ADVISED: Entries are now open for the second annual Perkoff Prize, the new opportunity from the Missouri Review which awards $3000 + publication in prizes to the poet, fiction writer, and essayist with the best work engaging the fields of health and medicine in provocative ways. Learn more on our website, or subscribe to our newsletter for weekly updates.

As ever, TMR is open for submissions year-round, and we remain dedicated to discovering and publishing the best contemporary writing in fiction, nonfiction and poetry. Be heard. Give us the opportunity to discover you: submit your work today! In addition, we have tons of marvelous (and free!) creative content to read, listen to, and even watch on our website.

Miller Aud-cast Episode 48: Bryce Berkowitz

Hello and welcome to Miller Aud-cast, the Missouri Review podcast where we listen to and discuss the finalists for the 2021 Miller Audio Prize. Thank you for being here, wherever here might be, for episode 48, featuring the latest finalist for the 2021 Miller Audio Prize in Poetry, Bryce Berkowitz’s “Hepburn Manor, Los Angeles.”

Bryce Berkowitz is the author of Bermuda Ferris Wheel, winner of the 42 Miles Press Poetry Award. His writing has appeared or is forthcoming in Best New Poets, New Poetry from the Midwest, The Sewanee Review, The Missouri Review, Ninth Letter, and other publications. He teaches at Butler University. Currently, he is at work on a novel, a second poetry collection, and several TV pilots.

Here’s what he has to say in his ARTIST’s NOTE:
“I wanted to teach my students how to record podcasts—even though I’d never recorded one myself… A couple friends encouraged me to learn how to use Audacity, a free recording program, before assigning the project—wise words for obvious reasons. Instead of recording a podcast, I recorded this poem then layered some music beneath it. I’ve always read my work out loud whenever I write. There’s no better way to tap into your voice. Recording and listening helps smooth out the edges in the lines. Over 15 years ago, I used to write lyrics, make beats, perform, and record music. So, this process felt familiar, although ancient too. It was a life I’d left behind, despite enjoying it for many years. After putting together this track, I shared it with several friends who still make music, and we’ve discussed collaborating—poems to soundscapes, instrumentals, etc. We’ll see what comes of it. For now, the idea of working with old friends on new projects is exciting, and I’m looking forward to that, and I’m happy to share this piece too.”

“Hepburn Manor, Los Angeles” was originally published in Muzzle Magazine. You can read or follow along here: www.muzzlemagazine.com/bryce-berkowitz.html.

BE ADVISED: Entries are now open for the second annual Perkoff Prize, the new opportunity from the Missouri Review which awards $3000 + publication in prizes to the poet, fiction writer, and essayist with the best work engaging the fields of health and medicine in provocative ways. Learn more on our website, or subscribe to our newsletter for weekly updates.

As ever, TMR is open for submissions year-round, and we remain dedicated to discovering and publishing the best contemporary writing in fiction, nonfiction and poetry. Be heard. Give us the opportunity to discover you: submit your work today! In addition, we have tons of marvelous (and free!) creative content to read, listen to, and even watch on our website.

Miller Aud-cast Episode 46: Mohan Fitzgerald

Hello and welcome to Miller Aud-cast, the Missouri Review podcast where we listen to and discuss the finalists for the 2021 Miller Audio Prize. It’s good to have you back, or here for the first time, with episode 46 of the Miller Aud-cast, featuring the latest finalist for the 2021 Miller Audio Prize in Prose, Mohan Fitzgerald’s “For Frank Ponomarenko, For Feeding The Birds.”

Mohan Fitzgerald is a musician and writer born in Boston and raised in Toronto. His audio storytelling work is the culmination of years of training in both creative writing and music. He studied composition and audio production at Berklee College of Music and received an MFA in Creative Writing from The Ohio State University in May of 2021. His print work has been published with Guernica, Bellevue Literary Review and Southern Indiana Review. He makes music for podcasts, most recently composing the theme for an Ohio State Theatre, Film and Media Arts Department reimagining of Paul Bae’s groundbreaking fiction podcast The Big Loop. He continues to work on audio projects and is drafting a novel about a hermetic movie buff and an unscrupulous video rental mogul.

Artist Notes:
“For Frank Ponomarenko, For Feeding The Birds,” is Mohan’s third complete audio story. He produced the piece independently, and composed as well as performed the original theme music. The piece is based on a short story published in Canada’s EVENT magazine. Mohan wrote the story with no intention of producing an audio version, but discovered that the text was ripe for adaptation. The story deals with silences and echoes, strains on communication, auditory illusions, and the surprising power of resonance. Mohan plays with scale and size in both the sound design and music production for the piece, conveying intimacy through close microphoning techniques and distance using projected spaces, long reverb tails and echoes. But if anything, the story is about distance yielding intimacy, people from different worlds coming together because of a shared curiosity over their differences. “For Frank Ponomarenko, For Feeding The Birds” is, Mohan hopes, a kind of secular prayer, a meditation on our small moments of revelation and connection, how unexpectedly they emerge, and how long—despite their seeming insignificance—they seem to reverberate.

Mohan has produced longer scale audio works, covering all aspects of production and music performance. They are available on his website mohanfitzgerald.com.

Aud-cast 47 will be here for you before you know it, so keep a watchful ear and listening eye about you. Thanks as always to the Missouri Review contest editor, Bailey Boyd, and to Patricia Miller, for her generous support for the Miller Audio Prize.

BE ADVISED: Entries are now open for the second annual Perkoff Prize, the new opportunity from the Missouri Review which awards $3000 + publication in prizes to the poet, fiction writer, and essayist with the best work engaging the fields of health and medicine in provocative ways. Learn more on our website, or subscribe to our newsletter for weekly updates.

As ever, TMR is open for submissions year-round, and we remain dedicated to discovering and publishing the best contemporary writing in fiction, nonfiction and poetry. Be heard. Give us the opportunity to discover you: submit your work today! In addition, we have tons of marvelous (and free!) creative content to read, listen to, and even watch on our website. Learn more at missourireview.com.

Miller Aud-cast Episode 38: Toni Ann Johnson

Hello and welcome to Miller Aud-cast, the Missouri Review podcast where we listen to and discuss the finalists for the 2021 Miller Audio Prize. I’m Marc McKee, managing editor, and the weather on the internet is half a billion dogs, 13 mudslides, 5 of which are on fire, gossip that looks like advertising, and advertising that looks like gossip: hang onto your brollys. Thankfully, the Aud-cast is here for episode 38, featuring the latest finalist for the 2021 Miller Audio Prize in Prose, “Time Travel,” by Toni Ann Johnson.

Toni Ann Johnson’s short fiction and essays have appeared in The Los Angeles Times, Hunger Mountain, Callaloo, The Emerson Review, Coachella Review, and elsewhere. A novel, Remedy For a Broken Angel was nominated for a 2015 NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Literary Work by a Debut Author. A novella, Homegoing won Accents Publishing’s inaugural novella contest and was released in May of 2021. A linked story collection, Light Skin Gone to Waste won the 2021 Flannery O’Connor Award for short fiction and is forthcoming from The University of Georgia Press in 2022. “Time Travel” is part of this collection. Johnson was the Humanitas Prize-winning screenwriter of the TV movie Ruby Bridges. She also wrote the second installment of the Step Up dance franchise, Step Up 2: The Streets.

Learn more and follow her on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook:

Social handles:
Twitter handle: @toniannjohnson https://twitter.com/toniannjohnson
Instagram is treeladytoniann https://www.instagram.com/treeladytoniann/
Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/toniannjohnson/

Miller Aud-cast Episode 36: Turkeys

Hello and welcome to Miller Aud-cast, the Missouri Review podcast where we listen and discuss the finalists for the 2021 Miller Audio Prize. This is episode 36, featuring the latest finalist for the Miller Audio Prize in Humor. That finalist is “Turkeys,” from the series SAFETY IN THE FIELD, part of a body of short film and audio projects inspired by educational audio-visual material: training films, filmstrips, foreign-language instruction records, etc. This entry comes to us from Christian Baskous, with help from Paul Bates, Sonnie Brown, and Marcos Martinez.

Christian Baskous is an actor, writer and director. His original work for radio has played and been serialized on non-commercial stations across the US and Canada. He’s appeared in motion pictures, plays and on TV and recorded popular audiobook versions of works by Charles Bukowski, Richard Ford, Jim Harrison and others.

Make sure you keep listening after the piece to hear contest editor Bailey Boyd and I talk “Turkeys,” and consider the subtle—and not so subtle—elements that build its comedy. To echo Christian Baskous, thanks for listening!

Aud-cast 37 is on its way soon, so look forward to listening to that in the coming moments. Thanks as always to the Missouri Review contest editor, Bailey Boyd, and to Patricia Miller, for her generous support for the Miller Audio Prize.

Just as a reminder, TMR is open for submissions year-round, and we remain dedicated to discovering and publishing the best contemporary writing in fiction, nonfiction and poetry. Be heard. Give us the opportunity to discover you: subscribe or submit your work today! In addition, we have tons of exhilarating (and free!) creative content to read, listen to, and even watch on our website. Discover more here.

Miller Aud-cast Episode 32: Brian Beatty

Hello readers, writers, and friends. It’s a chilly and insistently windy day in Columbia, Missouri, and we’d like to welcome you to Aud-cast #32, the latest poetry finalist for the 2021 Miller Audio Prize. Get acquainted with Brian Beatty, and his stellar, haunting work, “47834.”

Brian Beatty is the author of five poetry collections: Magpies and Crows (Ravenna Press, 2021); Borrowed Trouble (Cholla Needles, 2019); Dust and Stars: Miniatures (Cholla Needles, 2018); Brazil, Indiana: A Folk Poem (Kelsay Books, 2017); and Coyotes I Couldn’t See (Redbird Chapbooks, 2016).

Beatty lives in Saint Paul, Minnesota, where he works as an advertising creative.

Hobo Radio, a spoken-word album of Beatty’s poems featuring original banjo and guitar music by Charlie Parr, was released by Corrector Records in January 2021. The “47834” sequence is culled from Brazil, Indiana and was originally recorded for Hobo Radio.

Look for him on Twitter, where he is known as @brianbeattympls, and once you’ve listened (a few times) to “47834,” do yourself the favor of going back and checking out the other 31 Aud-casts we’ve left for you. We think you’ll appreciate them as a reward to savor as we move through the fall and shore up against whatever this winter’s got in store for us.

Thanks for being here with us for Miller Aud-cast 32. Aud-cast 33 is on its way, so stay alert. Thanks as always to the Missouri Review contest editor, Bailey Boyd, and to Patricia Miller, for her generous support for the Miller Audio Prize. And don’t forget, the Missouri Review is open for submissions year-round. Be heard. Learn more at missourireview.com.

Miller Aud-cast Episode 31: Wendy Spitzer aka Felix Obelix

Hello and welcome to Aud-cast #31. We’re grateful you’re with us, and for this aud-cast, we are featuring “Pieces of Grief: Loss in a Pandemic” from Wendy Spitzler, aka Felix Obelix, the latest finalist for the 2021 Miller Audio Prize in Audio Documentary. We want to note up top that the piece can be emotionally intense, and there are mentions of death and loss. Listener discretion is advised.

Wendy Spitzer, aka Felix Obelix, is an inquiry-based interdisciplinary artist with a diverse output that spans music composition and performance, visual and community artmaking, audio, research, and modes of participatory inquiry. Her projects often explore themes of time and memory and are executed collaboratively. She has a Bachelor of Music in Performance from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (USA) and a Master of Music in Creative Practice from Goldsmiths College, University of London (UK). After time spent in Prague and London, she now lives and makes art in central North Carolina. You can follow her on Facebook and Instagram @felixobelix and find out more on her website: felixobelix.com.

Artist notes:

“Pieces of Grief: Loss in a Pandemic” is the third segment of a seven-segment audio documentary on grief and loss that premiered online in October 2020. The piece integrates field recordings; anonymous voicemails from community members experiencing the COVID-19 pandemic; archival interviews from folks who survived the 1918 Spanish flu epidemic; and original music composed, performed, and recorded by Wendy Spitzer, also known under her artist moniker Felix Obelix. For the voicemail portions, she set up an anonymous hotline and asked the public to leave messages talking about their experiences with grief during the pandemic. Voices from these two global outbreaks, almost 100 years apart, sit next to each other: the listener is invited to compare and contrast these voices, as well as experience the collapse of the two tragedies across time. As the pandemic recedes, the piece also serves (and will serve into the future) as a kind of auditory time capsule of our months in limbo.

All seven segments and more information about the project can be found at: felixobelix.com/piecesofgrief

Stick around after the piece to hear contest editor Bailey Boyd and managing editor Marc McKee consider the piece, and weigh its artistry, its honoring of the spectrum of loss in the wake of the pandemic, and the optimism of such an artistic and humane gesture.

Thanks for being with us on Miller Aud-cast #31, featuring “Pieces of Grief: Loss in a Pandemic” from Wendy Spitzler, aka Felix Obelix.  Learn more about her and her project at felixobelix.com.  Miller Aud-cast 32 is on the way, so stay tuned. Thanks to the Missouri Review contest editor, Bailey Boyd, and to Patricia Miller, for her generous support for the Miller Audio Prize.

Finally, TMR is open for submissions year-round, and we remain dedicated to discovering and publishing the best contemporary writing in fiction, nonfiction and poetry. Be heard. Give us the opportunity to discover you: subscribe or submit your work today! Learn more at missourireview.com.