Miller Aud-cast Episode 41: Trevor Stephenson

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. Happy New Year, listeners. May 2022 be recklessly good to you. Let’s start it off with episode 41 of the Miller Aud-cast, featuring the latest finalist for the 2021 Miller Audio Prize in Prose, “Bittersweet,” from Trevor Stephenson.

Trevor Stephenson is the pen name of Brian Hicks, an enrolled member of the Osage Nation, from the Gentle Peacemaker Clan, with Cherokee and European ancestors. Raised in the shadow of the Osage Hills, born miles from the reservation boundary, Trevor is a recent graduate of the Middlesex University Masters in Novel Writing Program, and a past recipient of The Alumni Scholarship from the Institute of American Indian Arts in Santa Fe, New Mexico. He is at work on a novel about a mixed blood Indian dealing with historical and generational trauma. His work addresses what it means to live in the liminal position between American Indian culture and the dominant US society.

The following is from his artist’s note:

Much of my personal story emanates from the domain given to my ancestors by the Creator: this piece is meant to demonstrate respect for the land as well as how our current state of being should be understood in terms of our relation to the physical environment. I believe the land, water, and sky speak for themselves, however, understanding what is being communicated requires dedicated awareness.

Stick around after the piece to hear managing editor Marc McKee and contest editor Bailey Boyd talk about how carefully and poignantly this piece does the work of allowing personal feeling to move into broader and deeper reckoning with history and its distortion and erasure.

Aud-cast 42 is right around the corner, so BE 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.

Can I remind you of something before we go? 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 marvelous (and free!) creative content to read, listen to, and even watch on our website. Learn more at missourireview.com.

Miller Aud-cast Episode 40: Sally Stevens

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. The Aud-cast is back for episode 40, featuring the latest finalist for the 2021 Miller Audio Prize in Humor, “The Story Lady/Cindarella,” from Sally Stevens.

Sally Stevens works in film and television scoring, sound recordings and concert in the Hollywood music business as a singer/choral director and lyricist. She served as Choral Director for the OSCARS broadcast for 22 years, and her voice can be heard on literally hundreds of film and television scores. She sings the main title for The Simpsons, now in its 32nd year of airing.

Her other passion is writing, and her short stories and poems have been included in Mockingheart Review, Hermeneutic Chaos Literary Journal, Raven’s Perch, The OffBeat, Funny in Five Hundred, Between the Lines Anthology: Fairy Tales & Folklore Re-imagined, The Los Angeles Press, The Voices Project, and No Extra Words podcast. Had the pandemic not shut them down, this would have been her 22nd summer at the University of Iowa summer writing workshops. She has recently completed a memoir about her journey through the music world of Hollywood, including the touring years in concert with Ray Conniff, Nat King Cole and Burt Bacharach.

She is also a fine art photographer and has had several Black & White Fine Art Photography exhibits in the Los Angeles area. Some of the photos from her series of film composer portraits were included in an exhibit at Cite de la Musique in Paris, in 2013.

Artist Notes:
The notes about this particular material — when I was a kid, I wanted to be another Lucille Ball when I grew up. Life took me in another direction, but I just love doing readings and hearing the audience laughter. This piece was so fun to create, and I’m just thrilled that it will hopefully be enjoyed by folks I would never otherwise have a chance to share it with. My love and thanks to TMR.

Social Handles/Websites:

www.HollywoodFilmChorale.com
www.SallyStevensWriter.com
www.SallyStevensPhotography.com/filmscoring.html

Stick around after the piece to hear managing editor Marc McKee and contest editor Bailey Boyd talk about how the funny unfolds in this clever project.

Aud-cast 41 is on its way soon, so BE 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.

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 marvelous (and free!) creative content to read, listen to, and even watch on our website. Learn more at missourireview.com.

Miller Aud-cast Episode 35: Gabriela Frank

Hello and welcome to Aud-cast #35, the Missouri Review podcast where we listen and discuss the finalists for the 2021 Miller Audio Prize. How lucky for you to be here in this moment, where we can spend some time listening to the latest poetry finalist for the Miller Audio Prize, Gabriela Frank’s “Ode to Loki (or, An Absurd Glorification of Existential Loneliness).” You are in for a treat.

Gabriela Denise Frank is a Pacific Northwest writer, editor, and creative writing instructor. Her work has appeared in True Story, Pembroke, Hunger Mountain, Bayou, Baltimore Review, The Normal School, The Rumpus, and elsewhere. She serves as the creative nonfiction editor for Crab Creek Review. Until February 2021, she had no idea who Tom Hiddleston was. www.gabrieladenisefrank.com

In her note on the piece, Frank has this to say:

This tumble of a poem began with a monthlong subscription to Disney+ in the dark days of February 2021. My husband and I binge-watched The Mandalorian and had twenty-eight days left on our subscription. We scoffed at the Marvel Cinematic Universe—we had only seen Iron Man at that point—because the whole thing seemed super commercial, and there were too many characters to keep straight. By March, we had watched every movie. The development arc of Loki was the most intriguing to me. Who is this Tom Hiddleston guy? Turns out he had been in a lot of movies, and one highly publicized romance with Taylor Swift, which I had completely missed. 

At some point, I realized it was the conflicted character that Hiddleston created rather than the movie star who captured my imagination. Definitely a bad choice for crush. We writers channel a little (or a lot) of ourselves into the characters we create–as do the best actors. Where was the line here between character and actor? Between appearance and truth? A love affair with Loki was bound to end badly, but what sort of person would be drawn to him? We were all stuck inside eating the same meals watching the same shows, and from that notion—the trapped obsessive with nothing but time, imagination, and an internet connection on her hands—an idea was born.

For more, follow Frank on Twitter and Instagram, where her handle is @CivitaVeritas.

Aud-cast 36 is on its way soon, so make sure your ears are on their toes. 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. Learn more at missourireview.com.

Miller Aud-cast Episode 33: Janet Horvath

Hello and welcome to Aud-cast #33. It’s our pleasure to introduce the latest Audio Documentary finalist for the 2021 Miller Audio Prize, Janet Horvath, with her piece “A Musician Who Can’t Tolerate Sound.”

Janet Horvath, is a lifelong performing classical musician, soloist, author, speaker, and educator. The Minnesota Orchestra’s associate principal cello from 1980 to 2012, she has appeared as soloist with orchestra, and in recital and chamber music throughout the United States, Canada, and Europe.

The author of the award-winning book Playing (Less) Hurt—an Injury Prevention Guide for Musicians, she has worked with instrumentalists to establish a holistic approach: to play with ease and eloquence, while preserving good posture and maintaining comfort.

A pioneer and authority in the area of the medical problems of performing artists and a passionate arts advocate, Janet’s masterclasses and seminars are well-regarded by both amateur and professional musicians, teachers and students, and health care providers. Presentations include for the San Francisco Symphony, Utah Symphony, Indianapolis Symphony, Boston Symphony Orchestra, and at colleges, conservatories, and conferences from coast to coast. She has appeared on the BBC, CBC, and NPR national radio stations and television.

Her Tiny Love Story appeared in the New York Times, May 2021 and she is an audio-documentary finalist for the 2021 Miller Audio Contest hosted by the Missouri Review. Recent essays include A Musician Afraid of Sound published in The Atlantic, October 2015, and in national and international music publications—Musical America, Chamber Music America, Strings Magazine, The Brass Herald, and Strad Magazine among others. A contributing writer for the online classical music e-magazine Interlude.HK , she has penned over 300 feature articles about music and musicians.

Through her writing and musical performances, Janet creates restorative conversations, offers spiritual sustenance, and explores music’s life-bringing and healing power. She is currently at work on a memoir to those same ends.

She earned her master’s degree in music performance from Indiana University studying with Janos Starker and completed her MFA in creative writing from Hamline University St Paul, Minnesota.

The following is from her Artist Notes:

Today, ten years after leaving the Minnesota Orchestra, after a devastating hearing injury and enduring the difficult process of recovery, I find myself uniquely prepared for the trials of the last eighteen months. I have already re-invented myself as a writer; I have already lived through isolation and loneliness. If there’s a silver lining to 2020, it’s that we as a society have had a break from our noisy, hectic lives filled with too much sound; that we realize how many professions and businesses can be released from the rigors of in-person, 9:00-5:00 travel during rush hour; that our livelihoods may be malleable and adaptable. Perhaps we have learned to value the quiet and silence we’ve experienced that has allowed us to ruminate and dream. It’s certainly been better for the environment!

Through these troubling times we all have had to avoid loud gatherings, restaurants, sports events, and concerts. I will always protect my hearing. I know only too well how devastating hearing injury can be, which can impede interaction with others and participation in life. I hope my story will encourage others to do the same. 

Make sure to stick around after Horvath’s powerful work of memory to hear contest editor Bailey Boyd and I ruminate and exclaim over it in wonder. And now, “A Musician Who Can’t Tolerate Sound.”

Aud-cast 34 is on its way, so make sure your ears are on their toes. 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. Learn more at www.missourireview.com.

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 29

Hello and welcome to Miller Aud-cast #29, featuring “The Perfect Husband,” by 2021 Miller Audio Prize humor finalist Marina Hatsopolous.

Marina Hatsopoulos is a recovering tech entrepreneur who lectures about entrepreneurial topics at MIT, Harvard, Brown and other universities. Her business articles and creative writing can be found at www.windystreet.com. Her creative writing has been published in Antioch Review, Bellevue Literary, Santa Monica Review, and numerous other literary journals. She was Founding CEO of Z Corporation, an early leader in 3D printing out of MIT and has served on public and private company boards. Her Tedx talk, “From the Ashes of Crisis Arises Opportunity,” is about the impact of startups on job creation, providing the opportunity for socioeconomic mobility and social impact. Her husband Walter Bornhorst supported this particular piece being published on condition that she not pressure him to go to Morocco.

Make sure you stick around for a brief conversation about the piece with managing editor Marc McKee and contest editor Bailey Boyd. And make sure you learn all you want about the author at the following social media handles:

www.instagram.com/marinahatsopoulos/
www.facebook.com/MarinaHatsopoulos/
www.linkedin.com/in/marinahatsopoulos/

Thanks for being with us on Miller Aud-cast #29, featuring “The Perfect Husband,” from humor finalist Marina Hatsopoulos. Keep a sharp ear out for Miller Aud-cast #30, coming soon. Thanks also 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.

Miller Aud-cast Episode 27

Hello everybody, we’re back with the 27th episode of the Miller Aud-cast. It’s an honor today to present the latest finalist in the Poetry category for the 2021 Miller Audio Prize, “introDICTION,” from Angela Kariotis.

Angela Kariotis is a creative, a thought leader, and a divergent thinker. Her varied experience makes her unique and nimble. She is an advocate, educator, artist, and a project director.

Angela is a future aesthetics performance artist writing about race, ethnicity, and class in America. Called “a lithe and vital writer-performer” by The Star-Ledger, Angela Kariotis “possesses the raw energy to light up a small city” heralds The Chicago Reader. “But it’s her sly and engaging use of language that makes her work memorable in dynamic performances that are serious and seriously funny” writes the Austin Chronicle.

As a presented and commissioned artist, Angela has brought her unique performance style across America and beyond to venues such as The University of California-Los Angeles, Contact Theater in Manchester, UK, Legion Arts in Iowa, the Off-Center in Austin, TX, the New Jersey Performing Arts Center, and the Hip Hop Theater Festival in New York City. With its deft balance of narrative, critique, and movement, as well as Angela’s visceral and fluid performance, her work has connected with audiences across the U.S. “A one-woman artistic showcase in her trail-blazing storytelling.” –Los Angeles City Beat.

Winner of a NJSCA Playwriting Fellowship and National Performance Network Creation Fund Awards, Angela couples her masterful performances with cutting-edge residency work. A master teaching artist for 20 years, Kariotis is committed to literacy through the arts, theater for social justice, and art-making as a liberatory practice. For her classroom teaching, Kariotis integrates contemplative learning, and restorative circles into her pedagogy. Her work is hyper focused on classroom inclusivity and active learning. Kariotis facilitates strategies to create an equitable classroom and to support co-intentional teaching with an empowered and diverse student cohort.

Learn more at her website: angelakariotis.squarespace.com.

Stay tuned after this ear-bending, mind-delicious piece to hear contest editor Bailey Boyd and I have a brief, admiring conversation about it.

Stay tuned for Miller Aud-cast #28, coming soon. Thanks also 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.

Miller Aud-cast Episode 24

Hello and welcome to Miller Aud-cast, Episode 24. In this episode, we feature three poems from David Olimpio, a finalist for the 2021 Miller Audio Prize in Poetry.

David Olimpio grew up in Texas, and currently lives and writes in Philadelphia. He is the author of This Is Not a Confession (Awst Press, 2016) and the Publisher and Editor-in-Chief of Atticus Review. You can find more about him at davidolimpio.com, including links to his writing and photography. He Tweets and Instagrams as @notsolinear.

From David:

This little triptych of poems sprang forth in quick succession during a period of intense sadness and transformation where I was shedding some old stuff to make way for some new. What all three poems have in common is the theme of divorce and the associated feelings of loss (of love, of life, of identity). One of the poems is about an abortion. Another is about perceptions of self around the concept of masculinity. The pieces are part of a larger collection I am building around these themes. An interesting side note is that each poem also draws inspiration from a particular Mad Men episode. Somehow that show feels deeply important to my life in a way I can’t adequately explain coherently. And maybe that’s what poetry is for: to adequately explain things incoherently.

I’ve never felt satisfied with just the writing of words on paper. I like to accompany text with sounds or images. I’ve long made “photopoems,” [link: davidolimpio.com/category/photoblog/] most of which are actually written by my dogs while I am sleeping, or otherwise unconscious, and then edited by me later. But a new interest of mine is working with audio and video, mixing the written word with those mediums. (Of course I’m kidding about the dogs — they’re also involved in the editing process.)

I tend to hear my poems as I write them, the inflection, the tone, the pauses. For me the aural quality of a poem isn’t an afterthought. It’s more integral to the way I conceive a poem, or even a piece of prose. I’m glad there are projects like the Miller Aud-Cast to showcase audio literary work. It’s really the preferred way I like to share my writing.

Instagram: @notsolinear
Twitter: @notsolinear
Medium: @davidolimpio
Website: davidolimpio.com

Much gratitude to David Olimpio for sharing his poems with us, and for the conversation they inspired.

Stay tuned for Miller Aud-cast #25, coming soon. We hope you’ve been enjoying the Aud-cast, and remember: if they’ve inspired you to record your own creative work, whether in poetry, prose, humor, or audio documentary, submissions are open now for the 2021 Miller Audio Prize. The deadline for this year’s contest was just extended to June 22. Learn all about it here. Thanks also to the Missouri Review contest editor, Bailey Boyd, and to Patricia Miller, for her generous support for the Miller Audio Prize.

Miller Aud-cast Episode 23

Hello everybody, we’re back with the 23rd Episode of the Miller Aud-cast to share with you all “Love Tunnels,” a finalist for the 2021 Miller Audio Prize in Audio Documentary, written and directed by Malgorzata Zerwe and David Zane Mairowitz.

Here’s what they have to say for themselves:

“We are both radio free-lancers, we’ve worked in and for many countries, separately and together, and we like to keep our microphones open and ready whenever we can. In 2011, we found ourselves on a car trip from Denver to San Francisco, lasting about four weeks, and with a stopover in Las Vegas to “legitimise” (not our word) our relationship. Right away we decided to talk to and record anyone along the way who had anything poignant to say about the marriage ritual, among others a Native American Navajo horse-tamer, Colorado Bible-preachers who wanted to marry us in their hotel, as well as a tour guide in Taos who filled us in on D.H. Lawrence’s stormy marriage there. This became our Radio Road Movie, which includes our recordings in Vegas itself, attacked by wedding sharks on the street and embarrassed by a kitschy wedding sermon conducted at the open window of our muddy rental car. The current piece is a truncated version of a longer feature.”

Stay tuned for Miller Aud-cast #24, coming soon. In the meantime, DO NOT SLEEP: submissions are open now for the 2021 Miller Audio Prize. Learn all about it at our website. Thanks also to the Missouri Review contest editor, Bailey Boyd, who joined me for this Aud-cast, 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.

Miller Aud-cast Episode 22

Welcome to the Missouri Review’s Miller Aud-cast. This is episode 22, you lovely internet you. Today we’re gorgeously dealing with Daniel Dyer’s “When Staring Into the Horizon’s Headlights,” a finalist for the 2021 Miller Audio Prize in Prose.

Daniel M. Dyer is strikingly handsome, overwhelmingly intelligent, and constantly sarcastic. A California native, he has been published by The Dallas Review, Malibu Magazine and several other publications before he released his debut book, When Did This Bullshit Become Poetry? which charted as an Amazon #1 New Release and best seller. He is the co-founder of the videography company Visual Candy, which he operates alongside his brother. When he’s not hunched over his weathered desk he is most likely taking photos of uncomfortable squirrels, or being loud in otherwise quiet public locations. Above all, he is extremely grateful for this opportunity:

This short story will be included in a book of similarly styled tales. The goal was to make you, the reader, have a good ol’ fashion cry. Or at least crave a good cry. I hope I have accomplished that goal. Thank you so much for giving it your time.

Stay tuned for Miller Aud-cast lucky #23, coming soon. We hope you’ve been enjoying the Aud-cast, and remember: if they’ve inspired you to record your own creative work, whether in poetry, prose, humor, or audio documentary, submissions are open now for the 2021 Miller Audio Prize. The deadline for this year’s contest is June 15. Learn all about it at our website. Thanks also to the Missouri Review contest editor, Bailey Boyd, and to Patricia Miller, for her generous support for the Miller Audio Prize.