Their live cafes, gigs and immersive residencies are normally a highlight of our calendar, so we’re grateful to be able to keep up with all things Dash Arts via their excellent podcast series at a time when it’s not possible for us to meet in person.

As 2020 comes to an end, we’ve rounded up five of our favourite episodes from Dash Arts’ first year of podcasting. They cover everything from the impact of Brexit on European artists to what it means to be European, the Windrush Generation and who history is told by, and the experience of artists living across borders.

Tune in to hear Artistic Director Josephine Burton as she speaks to artists, filmmakers, musicians, theatre makers and more, exploring the challenges facing society today, and with each episode delving into movements, legacies and ideas that continue to shape the cultural landscape worldwide.

1. Art on the Brink of Brexit
Recorded at Rich Mix London

Features: theatre-maker, producer and dramaturg Miriam Sherwood, ThereThere theatre and performance artist and writer Bojana Janković and stand-up comedian and co-founder of EE Com Fest Victor Pătrășcan.

This episode explores what impact Brexit is having on European artists’ practice and their relationship to Europe. 

Listen out for: 

  • Discussion on whether comedy can work across cultures; including debate on offensive comedy, national stereotypes and where the line is
  • Discussion on the difference between an expat and an immigrant and how these two words are perceived differently
  • Discussion about what the future will hold for migrant artists post-Brexit, and how art can help us to heal and unite after Brexit

2. Destination Europe
Recorded at Rich Mix London
Featuring: Swedish actress and filmmaker Bahar Pars, actor and model Nanna Blondell, who stars in one of Bahar’s shorts; actor, writer and translator Houda Echouafni and Tom Green of Counterpoints Arts.

Listen out for: 

  • Discussion around getting work in the UK as an actor; the inherent racism of the stories and characters being written in the UK/America and the inherent racism of the casting in the UK/America.
  • What does it mean to be European? This episode looks at European identity through the eyes of artists and migrants born outside of the content. Is there such thing as a European identity? Or is there only the identity of your own country? What unites us as a continent in this way? How is Europe viewed as an identity by those who live outside of it? All of these points are discussed in the episode.

3. Felix de Rooy
Featuring: Felix de Rooy himself, theatre director Ernestine Comvalius and artist Neske Beks alongside visual artist Charl Lanvreugd, playwrights from the BOOM! Project (a Dutch-British theatre initiative examining and challenging colonial history and narratives) Jude Christian, Gable Roelofson and Enver Husicic, and the project’s facilitator Jonathan Meth.

Listen out for:

  • Felix de Rooy is a Curaçaoan-born Dutch artist, filmmaker and director who, despite being described as ““a source for all black arts in the Netherlands”, is largely unknown in mainstream art and culture. This episode is all about the impact of colonialism on history and how black artists like Felix were mostly overlooked despite their prolific work and influence on many other artists.
  • How history is told and who it is told by heavily relates to Black Lives Matter and wider discussions being had about Europe’s colonial history, the removal of statues etc.
  • Discussion on how venues and arts organisations are getting it wrong right now when it comes to diversity, through the eyes of artists and writers, and how they might do better.

4. Songs of the Migrant Worker
Recorded at Rich Mix London
Featuring: poet Hannah Lowe, Artistic Director of ‘WINDRUSH70 – Brent’s Pioneering Windrush Generation’ Zerritha Brown, German-Turkish novelist Imran Ayata and artist, director and composer Bülent Kullukçu, co-curators of ‘Songs of Gastarbeiter Vol. 1’, which features music by Turkish guest workers and pays tribute to the cultural contribution made by the first wave of migrants to Germany.

Listen out for:

  • Examination of the similarities and differences between the UK’s Windrush generation and Germany’s ‘Gastarbeiter’ (translated as guestworkers, meaning immigrant workers) and the hurt and trauma experienced by both 
  • Features Zerritha Brown, Artistic Director of ‘WINDRUSH70 – Brent’s Pioneering Windrush Generation’ discussing the exhibition, which features image of the Windrush generation in Brent and was recently revived by Brent Council. 
  • Discussion on how reggae helped to unite Windrush communities with existing communities in Britain
  • Discussion on how the ‘Windrush Generation’ came into to be understood and prevalent in British public imagination in the 90s
  • Features Hannah Lowe reading her poetry

5. On the Border

Featuring: Berlin-based author, composer and editor-in-chief of Flaneur Magazine Fabian Saul, visual artist Mariana Gordan (originally from Romania), Norwegian-born economist and Financial Times columnist Martin Sandbu and live music from Slovakian vocalist Lori Secanska and Greek-Cypriot guitarist Iakovos Loukas.

Listen out for:

  • This episode looks at the experience of living on the border and of crossing borders, from the prism of art, film, music, literature and economics.
  • Visual artist Mariana Gordan’s thrilling stories of crossing the iron curtain from Romania into the west and her arrest under Nicolae Ceaușescu’s dictatorship 
  • Beautiful music from Slovakian vocalist Lori Secanska and Greek-Cypriot guitarist Iakovos Loukas

Find out more about Dash Arts Podcast series here.

Read our Raised @ Rich Mix interview with Dash Arts founder Josephine Burton here.