Light and lively discussions on film, music, and creative culture.
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024 A Chat with Francesca Kritikos about Poetry
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Francesca Kritikos is the author of the chapbooks It Felt Like Worship (published by Sad Spell Press in 2017) and Animals Don't Go to Hell (published by Bottlecap Press in 2021) as well as the forthcoming full-length collection Exercise in Desire (which will be published by Vegetarian Alcoholic Press in early 2022). Her poetry has also appeared in the Des Pair Quarterly, Ghost City Review, and Witch Craft Mag. She completed the undergraduate creative writing program at the University of East Anglia in the UK in 2017. She is on Instagram @fmkrit.
023 I'll Follow You: A Chat with Pascuala Herrera about Self-Publishing
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Pascuala Herrera was a Professor and Accessibility Specialist at Harper College in Palatine, Illinois, for almost 30 years and was selected as Distinguished Faculty, the highest honor given to a faculty member, in 2019 and is now faculty emeritus. She is currently also a full-time consultant and author of Not Always a Valley of Tears: A Memoir of a Life Well Lived. Pascuala received her BA in Sociology and M.Ed in Reading and Learning Disabilities at DePaul University in Chicago. She is a frequent local and national presenter on the topics of disability awareness, motivation, and the importance of education for individuals with disabilities and Latinx students. Pascuala contracted polio at nine months old, and has spent her career assisting thousands of students with disabilities both in and outside the classroom. As a disabled Latina woman, she inspires and motivates others in working towards achieving their aspirations despite any challenges they face. I was very excited to get to talk to her about her experience as a first-time self-published author. We go deep talking about purchasing ISBNs, hiring a freelance design team, and the ins and outs of marketing yourself, as well as touching on her fascinating experiences as a disability advocate and as a parent.
022 My Writing Is How I Connect with People: A Chat with S. Elizabeth of Unquiet Things
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S. Elizabeth is a writer, curator, and frill-seeker. Her essays and interviews about esoteric art have appeared in Coilhouse, Dirge Magazine, Death & The Maiden, as well as on her own occulture blog Unquiet Things, which intersects music, fashion, horror, perfume, and grief. Born of the strange and fraught relationship between an astrologer and an artist, S. Elizabeth draws upon the magic in her blood and a lifelong passion for the visual arts to explore her obsessions through her writing. She is the co-creator of The Occult Activity Book Volumes 1 and 2 and is a staff writer at Haute Macabre. She lives in the Florida swamps with a Viking named Ývan and an imaginary corgi named Cheese Tray.
Today we chat about being the avenging angel of properly crediting supposedly anonymous artwork found online, why intros are the hardest part of the writing process, the arcane expectations of the publishing industry, being terrified of academics, reining in the tendency to be clever at the expense of kindness, and her Taurean ability to become more of herself while staying cozy at home.
021 A Conversation with Tim Clarke, the Translator of IN MAY
Complete show notes are available on QueenofPeaches.com.
Tim Clarke has performed throughout Europe, North America, and the UK, including close to 1,000 appearances on London’s West End stages. He’s had leading roles in productions including Jesus Christ Superstar, Blood Brothers, The Buddy Holly Story, Dusty—The Musical, The Glenn Miller Story, and The Demon Headmaster. Tim’s television roles have included Sir Richard Byngham in The Spanish Armada, fireman Mick Foster in Emmerdale, and Detective Inspector Goodman in Canary Wharf, as well as numerous TV commercials.
As a musician, he’s written and recorded the albums Life Changes and To Love and Be Loved and was the winner of the Netherlands International Song Festival and a finalist at the Isle of Wight Song Festival.
A highly competent German and French speaker, Tim has also translated into English the German musicals A Touch of Colour and Scrooge—A Christmas Tale as well as project managed the critically acclaimed musical theater piece In May, which features all original music by Neil Hannon of the Divine Comedy. Which is what brought us together.
In the spring of 2017, I wrote a long, loving post on my blog, Queen of Peaches, about the recording of In May that appeared as a bonus disk on the 2016 Divine Comedy album Foreverland. In the years since, it’s become one of the most highly trafficked pieces on my site. Fans of Neil Hannon are nothing if not devoted to his music. Tim himself found and read the piece and reached out to me about it, and the rest, as you’ll soon hear, is history. I was so excited that he was willing to spend a solid 90 minutes talking me through the ins and outs of his extremely varied career, as well as the creation of this breathtaking set of songs, which have meant so much to me over the past few years.
020 Hilary Webb: We Breathe Together
Complete show notes are available on QueenofPeaches.com.
Today, I’m in conversation with my very dear friend, singer Hilary Webb.
Originally from Schererville, Indiana, Hilary began studying voice at the age of 13. She earned her bachelor’s from Ball State University, where she studied with Mary Hagopian, and she earned her master’s in vocal performance from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. She has worked with John Rutter, Dan Forrest, Beverly Sills, Barbara Hahn, and The King’s Singers and has been soprano section leader at Holy Trinity Episcopal Church in Greensboro, North Carolina, since 2011 and has been part of the Bel Canto Company since 2003. Hilary has also performed with the Greensboro Opera, Capital Opera Company, and The Choral and Oratorio Societies of Greensboro, and has made guest appearances with The Triad Pride Men’s Chorus. A two-time National Association of Teachers of Singing Great Lakes Auditions finalist and Mu Phi Epsilon scholarship winner, she competes throughout the country and performs in the U.S. and Europe.
In our chat today, we talk about how we first met thanks to the robust community arts scene of Northwest Indiana in the 1980s and 90s (and how the secret origins of the very name of this podcast go back to my days as piano accompanist for many of Hilary’s solo performances), seeing Placido Domingo live on stage the first time she ever went to the opera in Chicago, hanging out with Beverly Sills, how women and men’s voices come to maturity in different ways, the spiritual dimensions of choral music and the challenges of choral singing during these days of Covid and social distancing, and why she’s specifically chosen not to live in New York, Los Angeles, or Chicago in order to pursue music professionally.
Black Lives Matter
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