Daphna Attias and Terry O’Donovan in Kennington Skate Park

Dante or Die Podcast: Q+A

We launched a new podcast series late last year, with all 5 episodes now available to listen to.

To find out more about the series we chatted to our Co-Artistic Director, Daphna Attias:

What inspired you to create a podcast?

We love making shows in unusual spaces, We are always excited to see young theatre makers finding new spaces to bring theatre to. We learned a lot  through making our shows, making mistakes and finding creative solutions to problems. We worked with some incredible collaborators over years and we were interested to hear from them about the challenges and joys of creating work in unexpected locations. 

And why a podcast rather than say, a video or a series of handy pamphlets on the subject?

We both love podcasts. There is something so intimate about this medium which allows for a less formal conversation. I think it brings the listener right into it. And people could listen to it while taking a long walk or while taking a long bath. It felt like a way to make the project more personal.

And what makes this podcast uniquely ‘Dante or Die’?

The voices in it. We talk about all our shows, we hear from performers and how they dealt with performing to audiences up close in a changing room, from writers about integrating touch into a script, from business managers about how they had to explain to their staff there will be a show at their storage unit and from a choir leader about how jumping into a swimming pool while singing holding our for a hero impacted the…

Aren’t you worried about giving away all of Dante or Die’s secrets of success?

Not at all. We talk about creative tools and tips which anyone could take to their own practice. We are excited to share them with listeners and see what it might inspire others to create. 

During the first episode it’s mentioned that Dante or Die's work is more than just something the audience experiences, it’s not just immersive for the sake of it.  Is that what you think makes Dante or Die’s work special amongst companies working in the site specific field?

Our work has a social aspect to it which makes it ours. We always tackle a current topic in modern society and through extensive research and community engagement we build a project that is usually wider than just the final show.   For example when we created Odds On which is about online gambling addiction we spent a year working with a creative advisory group of people with lived experience who fed into the project at each point, R&D, writing, animation, marketing… They helped us shape the story and make sure the work is created responsibly. 

The podcast looks at what you’ve learned and experienced through the company’s work to date. What did you learn through the making of the actual podcast though?

I loved working with our producers Marie Horner and Erica McCoy. Their voices were really important as were finding the shape of the podcast and editing the interviews.  They really know how to listen! I learned a lot from working with them. It was also so useful to reflect with our collaborators and discover things from their point of view, I heard some stories for the first time.  

What one piece of advice would you give to your younger selves, back in the skate park that features in the first episode?

I would tell us that it’s ok not to know. That finding out is the most important part of the process. 

Our podcast is available for free now, with all 5 episodes streaming on all the major platforms. Find out more and listen here.