Задание 7. Аудирование. Полное понимание прослушиваемого текста. ЕГЭ 2021 по английскому языку
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Задачи для практики
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Where did he stay?
- At the student dormitory.
- At the cheap hotel.
- At his Chinese friend’s house.
Interviewer: Welcome to our Interview Series. Today we have invited Barzo Dosky from London United Kingdom to our show. Now he is in China to prepare for national wushu competition. Was this your first time in China?
Barzo: I have travelled to China 3 times. I was studying Taolu Wushu at Beĳ ing Wushu Team. I was there for one month intensive training programme… training 5 hours a day… as well as sightseeing on the weekends
Interviewer: How was your Martial Arts class and teacher?
Barzo: There were many classes you could choose from training with the professional team or needed to work more basics at the time. If I was to go back now I would train more with the professional team as I feel that I have a much better level of wushu. Not all of the coaches spoke English. The coach for the professional team would rarely correct or ‘teach’ in a sense, as he/she would already expect you to have a good level of wushu. He/she would only correct mistakes now and again rather than ‘teach’ you, whereas the coach for the kid’s class was more involved in teaching and improving your basic level of wushu, which will ultimately lead to a better level of wushu.
Interviewer: Any tips on getting the most from your training?
Barzo: If you have a novice level of wushu and have never experienced professional training, the best idea would be to train with the kid class. They work very hard on basics, whereas the professional team already have a good base, so they don’t work as much on the elements needed to help you improve. Training 5 hours a day, 5–6 days a week is not easy for anyone who has never experienced this level of intensity.
Interviewer: What was your accommodation like?
Barzo: I stayed at the student dormitory, which was pretty standard accommodation….not excellent, but not bad either. If I had any problems the administration was quick to help. I was provided with a bed, study desk and wardrobe, a fridge and a television. Meals were provided with the accommodation, which was very nutritious food and helped before and after a hard days training.
Interviewer: Did you meet many Chinese people?
Barzo: Many Chinese and foreign students were staying at the institute. Beĳ ing is a place full of foreign people as well as Chinese.
Interviewer: What do you think of Beĳ ing?
Barzo: It is probably my favourite city in the world. I have travelled many places in the world but so far nothing has beaten Beĳ ing. It has so many amazing things such as food, shopping, nightlife, culture, scenery. I can go on and on.
Interviewer: What do you think of Chinese food? And what is your favourite Chinese dish?
Barzo: I love it. Chinese food in China is nothing like Chinese food in the U.K or in the U. S. One of my favourite dishes is Szechuan hotpot!
Interviewer: What benefits did you get from the course?
Barzo: I understood what professional sports training was like, I learnt the importance of knowing how to train. I learnt a great deal about my body and how to treat it to get the most out of it. I made great friends. I came back to London with incredible energy and enthusiasm. Priceless!
Interviewer: Will you come to China again?
Barzo: Definitely….so much more things to experience there!
Interviewer: Thanks for your time, we hope you will come to China with us again!
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What events does she take part in?
- Annual carnivals.
- Language exchange meetings.
- Flamenco performances.
Interviewer: Welcome to our Interview Series. Today we have invited Susan Brown to our show.
Susan: People say don’t fall in love when you go abroad because you won’t come back… and based on my experience, they’re totally right. After graduating from college with a communications degree I headed to Spain for a teaching exchange program. The plan was to learn some Spanish, do a bit of traveling, enjoy the famous fiestas of Andalusia, and then go home and get a real job. But one year turned into six and before I knew it.
Interviewer: Where are you originally from?
Susan: I’m from a small town in Florida and now I live in Sanlúcar, Spain.
Interviewer: How long have you lived in Spain and how long are you planning to stay?
Susan: I moved here in 2011 and plan on staying forever! Originally I moved here to teach English for a year as a Culture and Language Assistant. After participating in the program I landed a marketing job in Seville and later was offered my current position working remotely as the Global Marketing Lead for a startup company in San Francisco/London.
Interviewer: How did you find the transition to living in a foreign country?
Susan: If I’m being honest, it was really difficult moving here in the beginning. I had studied Spanish. Also, despite studying Spanish I didn’t actually speak it very well… so it took me about six months of practicing daily to get to a point of fluency. I also had a difficult time adjusting to the Andalusian lifestyle; I kept forgetting everything was closed during siesta (2pm — 5pm) and on Sundays. That being said, now I feel proud when Spaniards comment on my “Andaluz” accent and napping on a hot summer day seems like a great idea.
Interviewer: Was it easy making friends and meeting people?
Susan: I have noticed the people in Andalusia are exceptionally friendly with foreigners. It may be the fact that I live in a small town, but I have been fortunate to make several close Spanish friends and have numerous acquaintances here too. My group of friends is a mix of locals and foreigners.
Interviewer: What do you enjoy most about living in Spain?
Susan: I love the lifestyle and culture in Andalusia. I’ve become a “disfrutona de la vida” as a result of living here! The cultural events and fiestas are fantastic — I own about six flamenco dresses myself and never miss a chance to dress up for the annual carnival!
Interviewer: If you could pick one piece of advice to anyone moving to Spain, what would it be?
Susan: Don’t fight the lifestyle. Adapt! You may find you’re a fan of late lunches and siestas after all. Spaniards have the second longest life expectancy in the world, so they must be doing something right.
Interviewer: What has been the hardest aspect to your expat experience so far?
Susan: I can’t really think of anything. Dealing with Spanish public offices is a pain, but other than that it has been a cakewalk for the most part!
Interviewer: What are your top 5 tips for anyone following in your footsteps?
Susan: Try to make new friends as soon as you move here. They’re a great way to practice Spanish and meet locals. You can search for “language exchange groups and meetups” online. Typically, during weekly meetups a group of people will meet at a cafeteria for coffee and will spend 30 minutes speaking in Spanish and 30 minutes in English. Bring your old student ID card. Most of the time they’ll give you the discount. Make it a point to improve your Spanish. I think it’s difficult to truly appreciate Spanish culture if language is a barrier for you. Try your hardest to make friends with locals; you’ll see a side of Spain you would never be able to experience otherwise.
Interviewer: I want to say a big thanks to Susan for doing this interview, and I wish you all the success in your career.
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What did she feel when she arrived in Spain?
- Sadness and homesickness.
- Happiness and optimism.
- Annoyance and anger.
Interviewer: Welcome to our Interview Series. Today we have invited Kerry Ireland to our show and she will tell you what it’s like to live in Madrid. All tips and advice about life in Madrid are here for you. First of all, I’d like to ask you to introduce yourself!
Kerry: My name is Kerry Ireland. I absolutely fell in love with traveling after studying abroad in Madrid. I am an artist, and paint landscapes and portraits with oils and acrylics. I also love to sing, and I play the flute! I guess you could say I have a lot of passions. I lived in Madrid for six months, starting in early January 2017. Prior to moving here, I had only been out of the country once with my mom after I graduated from high school.
Interviewer: Why did you choose to live in Madrid?
Kerry: Primarily, I chose to study abroad in Madrid because I wanted to focus on studying the Spanish language. My mom is fluent, and I grew up listening to her speak it. It has always fascinated me, and since I was a little girl, I knew I wanted to learn to speak Spanish one day. I thought living in Spain would be a great opportunity to become immersed in the language and really get a strong base for it.
Interviewer: How did you prepare for moving to Madrid?
Kerry: Since I studied abroad through my school, my abroad advisor pretty much babied us before departure, going over all of the essential things we needed to do. So through my university, everything was taken care of. Knowing that I would only be living in Madrid short term, I just brought one large suitcase filled with my basic and essential belongings. Of course, I did some major shopping when I got there!
Interviewer: How did you overcome difficulties?
Kerry: The second I got off the plane, an overwhelming feeling of sadness rolled over me. I had never been away from home and my family for more than a month or so, and knowing that I would be gone for half a year kind of hit me all at once. I had spent the previous year preparing for the move, but the reality of it did not hit me until after I actually arrived at Madrid airport. I remember holding in tears as I got into the taxi, on the way to the hotel I stayed at for the first few nights. Luckily my amazing boyfriend traveled over with me and helped me get settled in the first week I was there. Once we arrived at the hotel, I immediately broke down and started sobbing. It was definitely one of the most overwhelming experiences I faced while living abroad! After a few days, I started to settle in, and things got a lot better.
Interviewer: How to deal with culture shock in Madrid?
Kerry: The first week I was there, I experienced pretty major culture shock. Like I said earlier, I had only been out of the country once prior, and I stayed in a tourist resort town. I was surrounded by a new language, new culture, and new people. It probably took around two weeks to a month to really become accustomed to my new surroundings. Then it just felt like home.
Interviewer: What do you like about Madrid?
Kerry: I adore Madrid! It is such a lively city and there are so many things to do. Every day is an adventure in this city. Being so huge, there was always something new to try, new places to explore, and more people to meet. I loved that you can just hop on a metro, and end up somewhere awesome within minutes.
Interviewer: What do you recommend to visit in Madrid?
Kerry: The Royal Palace is simply gorgeous! It is filled with period décor and original paintings. It is so elegant- one of the most beautiful places I have been to. I also would recommend visiting the Egyptian temple that was gifted to Madrid, Templo de Debod, at sunset. It is so magical. I would also go to all of Madrid’s famous art museums, such as El Prado, Reina Sofia, and the Sorolla museum. These museums are home to some of the most famous paintings in the world!
Why is it important to understand how a culture works?
- It influences the evolution of a language.
- It helps to learn the rules.
- It helps to understand how a language works.
Interviewer: Today we are speaking to the teacher Isabel Plaza about her experience as a Spanish Teacher and the importance of Learning Spanish in Spain. Isabel is passionate about teaching the Spanish language, writing poetry and practicing yoga. She has many years of experience in teaching all levels of Spanish and has taught in many places. Dear Isabel, do you remember your first Spanish lesson as a teacher? When was it and how did you manage it?
Isabel: I will never forget my first lesson. It was in a school in Barcelona which was specialized in teaching Spanish to students from the United States. At that time, I was in charge of the cultural program. One day the school manager told me that she urgently needed a Spanish teacher for the next day. I did not think about my answer “Yes!”. I went home highly motivated and spent the whole evening searching materials from my Hispanic Philology studies and preparing my class. I am Spanish; I am a philologist, what could possibly go wrong? Well… Next day I go into the classroom and meet 25 students with cero level, they didn’t know a single word in Spanish. I was so nervous. I started speaking and before I knew it, I somehow taught all the contents of an A1 level in 15 minutes. A total disaster! This day I decided: I will never teach Spanish again in my live! But the next day I showed up in class and enrol for a Master of Teaching Spanish as a Foreign Language. And here I am, doing what I love!
Interviewer: What do you think is the most difficult thing to learn from Spanish as a foreign language?
Isabel: The verbs and the different types of tenses are confusing topics for the students. It is very enriching helping them get over these obstacles and see how they develop their skills and most often end up reaching a C1 level. It is precisely for these difficult topics when learning 24/7 in a Spanish speaking country becomes very useful.
Interviewer: What do you think is the advantage of learning Spanish in Spain?
Isabel: The use of the language is just so real. The student learns what he needs for the real life situations he is experiencing. In class, at the stores, in a cafe, surrounded by locals. In a real context the learning speed increases exponentially.
Interviewer: Which role does the Spanish Language School play in the learning of the language?
Isabel: Deeply understanding how a language works cannot be done without understanding how a culture works. How people from a country feel, think and live has a key infl uence on the evolution of a language. A teacher in Spain does not just teach you the rules; you get to experience firsthand why these rules are applied.
Interviewer: What is the usual motivation for people to learn Spanish?
Isabel: Travel, friends, work, love. All the usual reasons to learn a new language. And there are a lot of people and countries speaking Spanish in the world; thus there is a lot of travel, friends, work and love to be practiced in Spanish.
Interviewer: What three things can the future students of Spanish Courses Gran Canaria — Academia El Capitán expect from their experience in our Spanish Language School?
Isabel: Fun learning Spanish, a family atmosphere with the school team but also with the welcoming locals of the island and for sure clearly improving their communication skills in a very short period.
Interviewer: I want to say a big thanks to Isabel for doing this interview, and I wish you all the success in your teaching career.
What has Simona mentioned as an important thing to prepare for the exchange program?
- List of subjects.
- Documents for booking.
Interviewer: Simona is ambitious and a positive exchange student from Slovakia, passionate about traveling and exploring new places. The adventurous spirit of the girl brought her from Slovakia to ERASMUS internship in Spain, Valencia for 3 months. Now she is here to answer our questions. First of all, I’d like to ask you to introduce yourself!
Simona: My name is Simona and currently I’m living in Valencia. I’ve arrived here for doing my ERASMUS internship. My task is to make translations from English to German.
Interviewer: And from all millions of possibilities, why did you choose Valencia?
Simona: My final destination point was Spain, and the rest was not so important. Because I’ve been learning Spanish before and I wanted to improve it. Learning this language was the main reason for being here.
Interviewer: Looks like applying for the internship abroad worth it?
Simona: My answer is obvious! Actually, it does not even matter where you are going because it anyway will bring you to another level, enlarge your horizons, create new opinions and change your personality. You will meet so many unique people and new friends with who you will have different and interesting discussions. You will learn about new culture, you will see a new country and you will live a new life.
Interviewer: As you mentioned before, you were enrolled in Erasmus program. Who paid for your internship?
Simona: Yes, you are right. I had an ERASMUS scholarship and it means that EU paid for my scholarship. Also, as I was using Training Experience platform, I got some salary from my internship company.
Interviewer: What steps did you take in order to get a grant?
Simona: I applied in my University, made a CV and a good motivation letter and they just contacted me. After there were other steps to follow, which are specific for different universities.
Interviewer: What things for you were important to know before starting your program? Can you share your experience for next generations?
Simona: I think a good coordinator needs to say which documents you need if you go with exchange program. Also, don’t forget about insurance. You should book accommodation at least for a couple of days if you want to book something else afterward. Hmmm… Find out about life costs and a situation with transportation.
Interviewer: What did you like most about Valencia?
Simona: I very like Valencia — it is not too big and not too small. It is a perfect city for me to live in. The cultural offer also is incredible- drinks, food… From food, I like jamon, even if I do not prefer to eat meat, in this case, I am not a vegetarian, when it comes to Spanish ham.
Interviewer: And if we speak not only about food?
Simona: Yes, I like the park, which used to be a river and playground Gulliver. I recommend these places.
Interviewer: Your goal was to improve your language! Did you reach it?
Simona: Generally speaking, I was studying it for 3 years and then I stopped. After I forgot a lot of stuff, because I was not in contact with Spanish people. Basically, knowledge of the language was somewhere in my head but just had to renew it. I cannot say what level I had before, but for sure I improved it a lot. That is amazing because you cannot know when extra knowledge of culture and language can be useful.
Interviewer: What about Spanish people in general?
Simona: Generally, all people are nice, but Spanish people are especially nice and kind because they always want to help you in every situation, even if they cannot help you — they will try. I have only good experience with them.
Interviewer: I want to say a big thanks to Simona for doing this interview, and I wish her all the success in her studies.
Which important ingredient does she mention?
- Olive oil.
Presenter: Today in our studio we have a food stylist, photographer and author of the award-winning food blog La Tartine Beatrice Peltre. Good afternoon, Beatrice!
Beatrice Peltre: Good afternoon. It’s a pleasure to be here. Thank you for inviting me.
Presenter: What are your earliest food memory and your favourite dishes from childhood?
Beatrice Peltre: Summer days with my mother and grandmother, preserving fruit and vegetables from their gardens. To this day, when summer arrives I think about those times when Lulu and I are in the garden together. I was always so excited to have her prepare when she had leftovers of a roast beef, and her cherry cakes and seasonal fruit tarts were also favourites.
Presenter: How did your childhood, your family food experiences inspire your love and passion for cooking?
Beatrice Peltre: Eating locally grown food was always a priority at home. It was easy because it just made sense with the tradition of keeping a vegetable garden. Being in the kitchen with my mother and watching her cook every meal infl uenced me tremendously — though I didn’t realize it then. It instilled in me a healthy relationship with food, and an understanding that we can show love when preparing meals.
Presenter: Your new book is all about cooking for your family. What inspired you to write it?
Beatrice Peltre: My children. And my childhood memories of family meals. When I became a mother — and now that I am a mother of two young ones — I dreamed of writing a book that was strong on family food because living this life is what I do every day.
Presenter: What are the key ways to make healthy food tasty?
Beatrice Peltre: Focus on quality ingredients. My cooking is healthy but I am not being excessive in that way because I believe more in enjoying everything in moderation, and embracing food for enjoyment and happiness. This is more generous.
Presenter: Do you notice any differences in family meal times when compared the USA to France?
Beatrice Peltre: Yes, indeed. It’s clear that the French like to spend more time around the table. For the French, family meals are embedded in the daily routine. In the US, some families would rather make other activities a priority, and then eat on the go.
Presenter: You are an expert food stylist. Any tips for the amateur photographer capturing their own culinary creations on camera?
Beatrice Peltre: Keep it simple, use natural light, and finish with delicate touches such as fresh herbs. Don’t try to force something in a photo if it does not make sense with the food.
Presenter: What are the five most important ingredients at a chef ’s disposal? Favourite meat and vegetable?
Beatrice Peltre: In my kitchen, I’d keep a bottle of olive oil for cooking and a few other quality ones for dressing salads, plenty of fresh herbs, and dark chocolate. I love lamb, and carrots. The taste of a homegrown carrot just dug out of the garden is the best.
Presenter: Which person, living or dead, would have cooked you fantasy meals for you, and what would be on the menu?
Beatrice Peltre: My daughter. Whatever she decided to cook for me.
Presenter: And finally, you are granted three wishes to change gastronomic life — the nation’s food habits — in France. What would they be?
Beatrice Peltre: Keep the traditional methods and recipes alive. Instead of building a meal around meat or fish, focus more on a vegetable ingredient or dish. I think about my cooking in this way. Also, strengthen the culture of breakfast with more variety, proteins and healthy options to start the day.
Presenter: How important is it to engage children in cooking?
Beatrice Peltre: Extremely important. It shows them the path from ingredients to the dishes they eat. Children tend also to try new things when they participate in the preparation. It helps them to feel engaged and proud of the dishes they make.
Presenter: Thank you, Beatrice.
What is one of the key elements in operating a successful zoo?
- Large cages.
- A good nutrition.
- A proper record system.
Interviewer: Your title is Animal Curator. What duties does that job involve?
Dana Payne: I oversee animal care for roughly one third of the zoo’s animal collection. The zoo is divided into three parts, with a team that cares for the animals in that third — North Team, West Team, and East Team, plus a fourth team that cares for the zoo’s elephants. Each team is led by a curator. I’m the “North Team Curator.” My area includes Northern Trail, Raptors, Australasia and Day and Night Exhibits; I manage the collection for those areas. The Zoo’s Commissary is also one of my responsibilities.
Interviewer: What does it mean to manage a collection?
Dana Payne: Each year, and on an ongoing basis, I put together a draft plan for which North Team animals we should keep, place or breed. After it has been reviewed by involved staff, I implement the plan by acquiring the designated animals and moving some animals to other zoos. I work with the keepers to assure that the animals are well cared for and those animals that we’d like to breed are encouraged to do so.
Interviewer: Do you have a favorite group of animals?
Dana Payne: I am also the Curator of Reptiles (and Amphibians), so when an issue comes up that involves those animals, I am usually the first contact. This is particularly true of the work the zoo is doing to increase the numbers of western pond turtles here in Washington, through headstarting and captive breeding. The pond turtles that we have here at the zoo are not North Team animals, but I have been very involved in that project since it began.
Interviewer: Every job seems to have some “other duties as assigned.” What are your “other duties?”
Dana Payne: I created and maintain several large databases that zoo staff uses to manage keeper schedules, facility work orders, safety issues, keepers’ animal records and daily reports, and food ordering and inventory for the commissary. One of the key elements in operating a successful zoo is a proper record system. I translated the animal records database so that it would be useful for Latin American zoos and endangered animal breeding centers. The zoo has so far sent me to Panama and Ecuador, where I’ve installed it at three locations, providing those institutions with an essential tool for animal management.
Interviewer: Any other projects you are working on?
Dana Payne: I’m more or less the zoo’s historian. I maintain the collection of historic artifacts, and am writing a book about the history of the zoo. Recently, we uncovered the original granite lintel — the carved arch that marked the entrance to the park back in the 1890s. It’s great, and because it is carved granite, it is in perfect condition. I hope it will be installed at the zoo’s new northwest entry.
Interviewer: What did you study in school to get this job?
Dana Payne: I am definitely an exception — I am one of the few people at the zoo who managed to get their job without a college degree. I was a zoo volunteer while I was in college, and left school when I was offered my first zookeeper job. I intended to go back and finish at some point, but never did. When I was at university, I did take a lot of math and science classes. A lot of the information that we use here at the zoo is fairly specialized, and I spend a lot of my money on books that are useful references for my job, books about natural history and animal care.
Interviewer: Any advice for students who would like a job like yours?
Dana Payne: Read a lot. Get experience anywhere you can, at a zoo, or at another animal care facility. Start as a volunteer, and go from there. Get a degree in a related field, such as zoology, biology, wildlife management or another related subject. And read some more.
How did Ann got to the interview ?
- She was invited.
- She has won a competition.
- Her family is very famous.
Teachers at Jody’s school prefer to book …
- tours led by museum staff.
- either self-guided tours or tours guided by the museum educators they had a chance to work with beforehand.
- tours guided by great museum educators.
How was his first collection perceived?
- It was successful.
- It was criticized.
- It was sold.
Presenter: Today in our studio we have a fashion designer John Wray. Good afternoon, John!
John Wray: Good afternoon. It’s a pleasure to be here. Thank you for inviting me.
Presenter: Do you think true invention in fashion is still possible?
John Wray: I think of fashion as something that is developing. It is a continuation and it is constantly new. It does change, but there’s no invention. Everything has been done one way or another. And many designers are inspired by ancient clothes to begin with. But I think the world of fashion has changed a great deal in the last couple of decades.
Presenter: You were known to control all aspects of your company. Was it difficult to give it all up in 2013 when you sold the company?
John Wray: Well, I worked on every detail and every aspect of the business to see that we could offer people the best of what we could do. I thought for a long time as the business grew, “Is this something I want to do for the rest of my life?” And I knew it was not. I had done almost everything I wanted to do in terms of creation of products. And re-doing was less fun.
Presenter: Does a creative director of a fashion house still need to be a designer or is it perhaps enough these days to simply give direction and represent the brand well?
John Wray: I can’t think of one house that has a creative director that didn’t start out designing. You’re involved in every aspect of the creation of the product with design studios. I think it’s much harder to expect a person who was not a designer to oversee development of fashion products. It’s better to be a designer.
Presenter: Where did you get that creativity from?
John Wray: Well, I do think you need to be doubted in order to be creative. But there are so many ways to be creative now, it could be lecture, it could be music, it could be films. But really, I just got that creativity from myself, didn’t I? That’s what it is, my childhood experiences were so important. Besides, I grew up looking at amazing designers who did amazing clothes so I respect them and I respect myself not to just throw out stuff. It needs to mean something.
Presenter: What was your initial reaction when your first collection was criticized by one of the biggest newspapers in the UK?
John Wray: It was really terrible. When you’ve just done your first show, you have no money, you’ve just done this big push and then it’s like, “Is this really for me? Maybe I should be doing something else with my life.” It was the first collection I’d ever made outside of the university, I got friends to help, my family was helping and those people made me realize that it was good to split opinions.
Presenter: What does it take to have the true taste?
John Wray: We often say some things are good taste or bad taste, but who’s to really judge what is good taste and bad taste? I would say it’s really subjective; taste is in the eye of the people. But the true taste is something that is yours and I think that takes the time to discover. For me, comparing from when I started my career and my company to now, I think I have a much more sure idea of who I am and what my house represents.
Presenter: Are you analytical and thoughtful when you are designing?
John Wray: When you’re less secure in yourself, and when you’re younger, you tend to be more analytical. A lot of your education is about theory, so you tend to be a lot more analytical and you tend to think more. And the more confident you become with knowledge, you make decisions more decisively. A lot of the thinking is happening while you’re doing, but you’re not just sitting there contemplating, “What will I do?” You take small steps that no one really notices, but if you hadn’t taken those steps it would never lead you to where you are.
Presenter: Thank you, John!
How many basic ideas should kids understand?
Interviewer: Hi Pungky, nice to meet you! The Jungle Library project is about environmental education and conservation. Can you tell us more about it?
Pungky: The Jungle Library Project promotes environmental education to children living in highly deforested areas with human-wildlife conflict. With this project, we try our best to raise awareness through our story and photography in South Sumatra.
Interviewer: The project started on 2017. Why did you create The Jungle Library?
Pungky: The first time I met the indigenous children in a local village, I got my heart stolen. Their spirit and eagerness to learn about nature and the flora and fauna amazed me and inspired me to continue working with them independently. This is the reason why I decided to create The Jungle Library Project.
Interviewer: I have the feeling that you try to change people´s mind. Is it like that? Which is your task, your main goal?
Pungky: Through an environmental education syllabus, we teach primary school students about Sumatran native species, ecosystem function and environmental destruction. The aim is that the future generations take sustainable actions that don’t endanger their life. In other words, we try to change the mind and heart of village children so as to they don’t do illegal land clearing and illicit wildlife trade, activities to which they are exposed every day.
Interviewer: During this period of time, which are the funniest situations you have faced?
Pungky: It’s not funny, but heart taking. During the first month, I taught in a class of kids who made me tearing up. They said “Thank you so much, kakak”. Kakak in Indonesin means brother. After that, they also thanked me for helping them to learn writing and reading. I can’t hold tears back when I think about it. They thought I was crying because of a mistake of them… When I leave a school, students always want to hold my hands and I may spend more than 30 minutes until teachers advise them to stop.
Interviewer: And the worst one?
Pungky: It was after teaching a group of kids. I suffered an accident with my motorbike and I really taught I couldn’t teach again because I couldn’t walk. I was unable to walk for two months, my face was swollen and my body was full of wounds. The children who saw me were crying. I never told this to my family until I was completely recovered.
Interviewer: Since you started, have you seen some positive result?
Pungky: The kids’ mindset is changing… They understand what kind of Sumatran native animals that live around them are endangered and protected under the law. They understand 5 basic ideas about protected animals. We can’t shoot them. We can’t kill them. We can’t sell them. We can’t eat them. We can’t keep them as a pet. They know and understand the ecosystem function and the relationship between humans and nature.
Interviewer: I don’t think the results are small. They are so big, indeed. Are you alone in this project or do you have help?
Pungky: Apart from me, my good friend Joshua Parffit, who is also a freelance environmental journalist in Holland, helps me in the project. We collaborate to create this project together. I work on the project site and he manages everything online. Some of my friends around the world sometimes help me out too, like you. This project isn’t created only by both of us; it is created with the support of so many people who are concerned and love nature.
Interviewer: I wish you all the luck in the world. Tell me about The Jungle Library’s future plans…
Pungky: We will establish an ecotourism project at the end of this year. I will work together with the government to start a scientific and eco-tourism plan in one of the natural reserves in South Sumatra. Doing so, villagers will have greater incomes with tourism than doing illegal activities and it will encourage them to stop doing that. We will also establish a Research Station and eco-lodge inside the protected area. This year we will also start a restoration project.
Interviewer: Thank you very much, Pungky! I think there should be more people like you that feel a huge love for their land and eager to protect it.
What surprised Joanna most of all in Costa Rica?
- Wonderful ocean.
- Great shops.
- Great wildlife.
Interviewer: Welcome to our Interview Series. Today we have invited Joanna Simmons to tell us about her travelling experiences. So, what made you want to visit Costa Rica?
Joanna: I had an aunt and uncle, a very adventurous couple, who had been, and a cousin and her family, who had also been to Costa Rica in the last couple of years or so and they all came back raving about it. That’s what inspired us.
Interviewer: When it came to packing, was there anything you wish you’d taken with you or even left behind?
Joanna: I’m always in fear of packing too much and then having too much to lug around, but in fact, because of the lack of regular washing facilities, it’s a good idea to pack a little more than you might actually think you need.
Interviewer: Did you know any Spanish?
Joanna: Unfortunately, no, I just know hola and that sort of thing. I intended to do some classes before we went but I didn’t end up doing those. It would have been really useful to know some Spanish, though, particularly to communicate with the people whose village we were staying in. It wasn’t a problem at all, it’s just it would have been nice. I am going to take Spanish classes in September. We’re really quite keen on exploring South America now.
Interviewer: Did you pick up any souvenirs?
Joanna: Normally we try to buy things during the trip and not leave it to the last minute at the airport, as airports tend to be costly and there’s not much choice, but we found that it was quite difficult to find what we wanted locally, the quality we wanted, where we wanted it, but at the airport there was a brilliant selection. It was quite surprising. There were absolutely beautiful pieces of carved wall art here, which I would highly recommend, but you can also find a good selection in San José, too. That’s something people might find useful to know.
Interviewer: What were your preconceptions before you went and how did they match up with what you found?
Joanna: We were rather hassled before the trip with work and everything so we did less research than we expected to do. I knew I wanted to see a sloth, an armadillo — which I really didn’t expect to be able to do — and maybe a volcano or two. Apart from that, that was it! Actually, we were absolutely overwhelmed once we go there. We saw masses of wildlife, we saw fantastic birds, beautiful scenery, lovely people and the food was fantastic. And we saw loads of sloths and an armadillo up close, which was a bit of a treat!
Interviewer: You mentioned the food was fantastic. What’s on the menu?
Joanna: The basic Costa Rican food is rice and beans with chicken or fish. It’s very plain, but hearty and healthy, and obviously for breakfast there is endless tropical fruit. We also found that when it comes to eating out you could do that sort of thing, the simple Costa Rican food, but you could also easily find any number of extremely good restaurants. We had some of the best food we’ve had anywhere. It was a real bonus!
Interviewer: Do you have any ‘sense’ memories from the trip?
Joanna: Yes, but not specifically related to a single sense. I would say the feeling you get in the cloud forest is hard to describe — you can’t really. I felt really affected by being in the forest we went through; it was a really interesting experience. It’s alive with birdsong, but it’s more than that. Sounds, smell, sight — it’s a kind of mixture and an amazing atmosphere.
Interviewer: Has the trip infl uenced where you’d like to go next?
Joanna: Definitely. It would be nice to go back to Central America, but we’d like to explore the whole of South America really! We had only been to Mexico for a wedding before — not the same thing at all — so Costa Rica was uncharted territory. This trip has inspired us to do more!
What things does she find challenging?
- Publishing her books.
- Selling her books.
- Finding a publishing house.
Interviewer: There are so many of us who want to be writers. Some of us want to have careers as authors, and some want to pursue the art in our free time. But in our day and age, the publishing industry is incredibly competitive. Abigayle Claire is the 19-year-old author of Martin Hospitality, which won Honorable Mention in 2017’s Readers Favorite Awards, and today she’s here to answer questions about her writing life. Can you tell us a little bit about yourself?
Abigayle Claire: I’d love to! I’m nineteen years old and live at home with parents and seven younger siblings. Purple is my favorite color, and reading dramas are my favorite pastime. I’m currently pursuing creative writing and freelance editing through self-education and experience. As a writer, it’s also quite important that you know I’m left-handed.
Interviewer: Can you give us a bit of an introduction to your book?
Abigayle Claire: Martin Hospitality is my debut novel. It was inspired by a crazy dream, and while it was by no means the first story idea I had, it was the only one I completed with the intention to publish. The book follows a teenager who is taken in by a homeschooling family and follows how their lives are impacted as a result. People say “write what you know,” but I only half did that because my personal experience is as a part of a large family, not the harder experience of the main character.
Interviewer: When did you start writing?
Abigayle Claire: This sounds cliché, but I have honestly written stories for as long as I can remember. At first, it was movies and books that would inspire me. So I was quite the plagiariser in the beginning! I’ve gotten away from that, but my spontaneous inspiration process is still much the same. Even then, I only finished two stories when I was little.
Interviewer: How did you come to the decision to try and publish as a teenager?
Abigayle Claire: Growing up, I always assumed that I’d be an author. It never even crossed my mind that I wouldn’t publish something, even though I have dozens of partially completed stories to suggest otherwise. When I got the idea for Martin Hospitality, it was my first idea in a while, and unlike all my serious ideas so far, it really came together when I sat down to plan it out.
Interviewer: What are the challenges you’ve come across as an author?
Abigayle Claire: Marketing is hard. That’s something I really wish I could hand over to a publishing house! Publishing is just the first step. Having my books sitting on Amazon doesn’t sell them without work on my part. As I look into traditional publishing with a publishing house, though, I’m realizing that even publishing houses are getting tired of the work it takes to market a book no one has heard of or read. Even though I’ve only done publishing so far, I started a blog before I published which helped me find a community and build one of my own.
Interviewer: What have been your most helpful resources as writer?
Abigayle Claire: Other writers have been the most helpful. Making some close writer friends who have already done what I’m doing, write what I write, or are figuring things out alongside me has been amazing. I mean, let’s face it … “regular” family and friends are terrific, but they’re not going to have any idea what you’re talking about. Writer friends are incredibly supportive and helpful. I wouldn’t have made it very far without them.
Interviewer: What is the best thing you’ve experienced so far in your author’s career?
Abigayle Claire: Okay, the one specific thing was when Martin Hospitality won a Reader’s Favorite honorable mention in Fiction for Youth. That made me realize just how far my writing could take me. But it always comes back to the people. The ability to touch their lives with my writing and to help them with their own stories is such a privilege.
Interviewer: I want to say a big thanks to Abigayle Claire for doing this interview, and I wish her all the success in her career.
What kind of coffee is Lauri fond of?
- Flavored coffee.
- Natural coffee.
Interviewer: Lauri Pipinen, the 2011 Finnish Barista Champion, opened his own coffee shop recently and today he’s here to answer questions about his business. Congratulations on opening your own coffee bar. When did you first start dreaming of your own shop? How long did the whole process take from start to finish?
Lauri Pipinen: First I began thinking of opening a restaurant. That was about five years ago when I was studying hospitality management. A few years later I became interested in and coffee started working as a barista. Two or three years ago, learning more and more about coffee, I started thinking of setting up a coffee shop or a café. During the last few years, when visiting cafes around the world, I’ve been gathering ideas and watching for details — cups, menus, lights and atmosphere and so on. About a year ago I made the decision to start looking for a space and learning about all the permissions that might be needed.
Interviewer: Tell us about some things that were easier than you thought while setting up Good Life Coffee. Also, where did you face more difficulties than you had expected?
Lauri Pipinen: Setting up the company, getting the permissions and other formalities were easier and quicker than I had thought. Talking about hardships, finding the right space turned out to be much more difficult than I had anticipated. After a promising start, many landlords almost rang up as soon as I mentioned “café” or “coffee”. They probably were afraid that the café could eventually turn into a pizzeria or bar although that wouldn’t be possible with the right contract. Also, the difference between a quality-focused coffee bar and a typical “café” isn’t clear to everyone.
Interviewer: You hired an employee to help you out. Was it difficult finding the right person?
Lauri Pipinen: There were dozens of people applying so it was quite difficult to pick the right one among them. But I wanted someone who didn’t have previous experience in the coffee industry. I think it’s somehow easier to educate them to your style of doing things. And it’s also hard to find a barista that has some experience in Finland.
Interviewer: As the name says, your focus above all else is coffee. What kind of coffees are you planning to serve? Are there going to be several roasters in the selection?
Lauri Pipinen: I want to serve unusual coffees, off the mainstream. Personally I enjoy lightly roasted, fresh crop coffees where you can taste the natural flavour of the coffee. I also think that serving natural processed coffees to customers opens their eyes that coffee can be something else, as they are usually very fruity, smooth and sweet. However, personally I’m a little bit over this particular style of coffee. I want to use coffees that I personally enjoy.
Interviewer: What’s your approach to serve coffee? How is it served at Good Life Coffee?
Lauri Pipinen: I’m a big fan of black coffee. It’s well balanced, more consistent than espresso and just delicious. Nobody has complained of it by cup taking too long.
Interviewer: How would you like Good Life Coffee to differentiate itself from other quality focused coffee bars in Helsinki?
Lauri Pipinen: The atmosphere is stylish and well thought but still relaxed. I want to challenge my customers a bit — for example the black coffee menu with two choices and their descriptions forces them to choose and also think their preferences — light and acidic or fruity and full bodied?
Interviewer: Which coffee bars and cafes inspire you?
Lauri Pipinen: I really like the feeling and atmosphere at Drop Coffee in Stockholm. Those guys have a relaxed take on things but do it on a stylish way — and the coffee is good too!
Interviewer: Finally, what is the background of Good Life Coffee’s name?
Lauri Pipinen: There was a place called the Good Life Cafe in Los Angeles in the early 1990’s. It was a place for people to gather for a certain thing, and there it was music. At Good Life Coffee it’s Coffee. The name is a kind of tribute to the original Good Life Cafe.
How does Bryn balance school and volleyball?
- She is often absent in classes.
- She gets all tasks before training.
- She attends a management course.
Interviewer: Bryn is a college athlete playing volleyball at James Madison University in Harrisonburg, Virginia. In 2015, she packed her bags and left her hometown in Austin, Texas and headed for the start of her new life in college. During her 2015 freshman season, she was a starter on the team and held the record for most aces. Her individual success continued on into her sophomore year, along with the success of her team. During the 2016 season, the volleyball team won the title for the first time in sixteen years. Bryn feels honored to be a part of such a great accomplishment and successful team and today she’s here to answer questions about her life. What struggles do you face as a college athlete?
Bryn: I sometimes feel overworked, and feel fatigued throughout the day. I also often have to sacrifice some of my social life for volleyball, because I am always so busy. I struggled a lot with this freshman year, especially. Because I was living on campus, was not allowed to have a car, and still learning how to balance volleyball and life, often times I felt like the only places I went and things I did were to the gym and then back to my dark and small dorm. But, things are much better this year now that I have an apartment off campus and a car. It’s nice that I am able to go other places whenever I want to, and I sometimes even get to go on some fun weekend trips to other towns and cities.
Interviewer: What was the transition between high school and college like academically?
Bryn: There is a lot more time put into studying in college, and less time learning in the classroom. I was surprised to see that you do more learning outside of the classroom than you do inside. But, learning in college is much more fun and exciting because it is more focused on what you are interested in and majoring in.
Interviewer: What was the transition like for volleyball?
Bryn: College volleyball is a much faster paced game. There is a lot more training involved also, both in technique and physically. But, the competition is harder which makes it more fun and interesting. Also, when I was in high school and played for my school and for club, I had always played with and against the same girls. But when I got to college, I learned to play with a completely new set of girls, and we are able to play other teams from all over the country. It’s pretty cool.
Interviewer: Is it hard to balance school and volleyball?
Bryn: Although it is hard at times, it actually has taught me great time management skills, because I know that I need to get work done before practices. But, I have had some instances where professors and I have had a confl ict of interest because they are not in favor of the idea of athletics before school, or athletic-related excused absences.
Interviewer: What was it like to win the championship?
Bryn: It felt amazing to know that our hard work payed off. It really helped fulfill the student athlete experience and made it feel worthwhile. It was cool to be a part of the team who had won the championship for the first time in sixteen years. Plus, the ring is pretty cool.
Interviewer: What do you enjoy most about volleyball?
Bryn: The competitiveness of it. I also like that it is a team sport, and the successes and losses are experienced by the team together, not just as individuals. I think the team is what makes the sport so fun, and I like that not all the glory goes to one person and everyone shares it.
Interviewer: Do you plan to continue playing?
Bryn: Yes. But after college, probably only in adult leagues, if I feel up to it then.
Interviewer: I want to say a big thanks to Bryn for doing this interview, and I wish her all the success in her career.
What difficulties did Giles and his team have while shooting the video in Ibiza?
- There were too many fences.
- They tried to avoid flying the drone in the places that had many people.
- It was high season, so there were many visitors.
Presenter: Have you ever heard about parkour? Of course, you have! Today in this studio we meet Giles Campbell Longley who is a professional parkour stunt athlete and filmmaker. Welcome, Giles! Your last video is so fun to watch. Giles, what were some of the challenges you faced in making it?
Giles: We found the location via drone racing videos online and booked flights with no idea whether or not the structure would be safe enough to jump on. The whole thing was incredibly sketchy and we ended spending a ton of time testing and strengthening areas of the building so they could be useable.
Presenter: Eric Moor’s parkour is really impressive in the video. What was it like working with an athlete doing stunts like that?
Giles: I’m a full time parkour filmmaker & Kie Willis (the drone pilot on this project) is actually a professional parkour athlete himself, so we’re very used to shooting this style of movement. Eric is one of our closest friends and he’s incredible to work with, both in his determination to repeat something until it’s perfect, but also because of his sense of humor.
Presenter: Editing is an important part of why your video is so amazing. How long did you take with post-production?
Giles: The edit didn’t actually take too long, about two to three days. Every night after shooting we would get back to our hotel and play with the selects so by the end of the trip we already had a solid idea of how the final piece would look. Then it was just a case of polishing things up.
Presenter: Tell us about your company. Is this the kind of work you typically do?
Giles: Yes, I’ve practiced parkour since 2003 so the sport is well and truly engrained in my life. I got into filmmaking because I just wanted to film myself and my friends, and everything has just begun from there.
Presenter: Did you have to secure a permit or deal with any other kinds of regulations to fly your drone in Ibiza in order to shoot the video?
Giles: No, we didn’t obtain any permission to shoot there. We wouldn’t have considered the location if it was built up and had a lot of people frequenting the area, as we try to avoid flying anywhere that could cause any safety issues. The area itself was technically fenced off but there were many spots that didn’t have fences.
Presenter: Oh, really?
Giles: Luckily the location was incredibly remote, and due to the fact that we filmed it in the off season, it was December, we only encountered a couple of people during the whole week of filming. Visitors ranged from family’s coming in to explore, birdwatchers, and even some trials bikers who worked their way down the nearby cliffface and into the courtyard.
Presenter: How did you first get involved with aerial cinematography?
Giles: Years ago we had a couple of friends who built their own drone and mounted a small Sony camera on the bottom of it. We played around for a day in an abandoned estate and instantly saw the potential it offered to capture parkour from the air.
Presenter: Were there any problems?
Giles: Unfortunately the drone setup was rather temperamental and we didn’t get to utilize it as much as we would have liked. However, within a couple of years the consumer market for drones expanded, and we’ve been playing ever since.
Presenter: What are your predictions for aerial cinematography, and the drone industry in general?
Giles: I think in the near future things are going to get a lot more exciting when it comes to aerial cinematography. Drones have the ability to travel at rapid speeds while making movements that were literally impossible a few years ago, unless you had a helicopter, yet for some reason the majority of people in the action sports world still seem to opt for what are relatively simple shots and flight paths. Now with the rise of racing drones, and incredible small cameras I’m hoping to see more people utilizing these tools to push things even further. The benefit of racing drones is that you can create something very visually stimulating.
Presenter: Do you think the rules regulating the use of drones will change?
Giles: Regarding regulations, I think that unfortunately we will see these getting more and more strict in the near future. With drones being so accessible, it just increases the chances of reckless pilots putting other people in danger, effectively spoiling the fun for people who are trying to push their creative boundaries while being sensible and safe. I don’t really know what the end point of this will be, but I seriously hope nothing major comes into play, like an outright ban on drones.
Is Thomas generally cautious?
- Yes, he lives a balanced life.
- No, he is involved in a lot of extreme sports.
- Yes, and it helps him to relax mentally.
Presenter: Today in our studio we meet Thomas Barr who is a member of our country’s national Olympic team. You are welcome, Thomas! Let me ask you some questions. And here’s the first one — what does your typical week look like?
Thomas: A typical working week for me is six days long. I train from Monday to Saturday doing mix of sessions — speed, technical, and gym work — on three or four of those I would be doing two sessions a day. My week is jam-packed.
Presenter: Do you ever wake up in the morning and think to yourself that you just couldn’t be bothered going training?
Thomas: Oh, yes, 100%. But I get over that by the fact that I know my coaches are going to be there, or my training partners so I’ll let them down if I don’t show up. I find the early morning sessions the worst, the last thing I want to do is get up, I’m definitely not a morning person.
Presenter: How did you wind up becoming an Irish record holder for hurdles?
Thomas: My parents encouraged me to do lots of different sports when I was younger. Myself and my sisters tried out anything that was accessible to us. Athletics was the one I was fondest of. I started at about eight years old. Up until I was about 18, I was really nothing spectacular. I was based in Waterford with a local club who brought me on to the various National Championships — I was a high jumper for a few years. I then went on to college and really wasn’t sure I even wanted to stick with athletics. There seemed to be so much more to life, there were a lot of distractions and I started to wonder if I wanted to keep putting all my time into athletics when I saw what there was on the other side of things! My parents persuaded me to give it another year. I joined a new training group in Limerick and that year was really when it all came together. I ended up running a new personal best, ran a new national junior record and made it to the European junior final so I didn’t look back from then, it all started to snowball from there.
Presenter: It must take huge commitment. Are you well behaved 100% of the time?
Thomas: My friend Kevin is beside me and is shaking his head! I try to live a balanced life. My diet is pretty clean but that’s not to say that I don’t indulge in the odd chocolate bar or packet of Cola Bottles! I do still enjoy trying to get the best out of life. Athletics is only a short-term thing for me as I only have maybe six to eight years left. I don’t want to look back in ten years’ time wishing I had done stuff when I was younger. I am into a lot of extreme sports. I love snowboarding and am also into drift car racing and that kind of thing which is pretty frowned upon by my coach and physio but it helps me to relax mentally. I am cautious when I do these things but I wouldn’t say I am well behaved.
Presenter: Touching on the mental side of things there, how do you prepare your mind before a World Championship or Olympic final?
Thomas: I try to keep myself as relaxed as I can. I tried not to let that get into my mind, and I think that’s what I need to do from now on. I have to be careful not to over-think it.
Presenter: Did you ever find yourself totally star-struck as you strolled around the Olympic Village in Rio?
Thomas: I did and I didn’t. In some ways I didn’t want to be starstruck — I was trying to act cool you know! But it was quite hard at times when you see the world’s best athletes that I had watched on TV and followed on Instagram and Twitter for years and there I was in their environment. But then I thought that I deserved to be there as well. It was an amazing experience.
Presenter: What is your favourite running route?
Thomas: I love running along the river bank on a lovely sunny day, I hate the rain!
Presenter: Do you ever run just for fun?
Thomas: My day off would rarely include a run. I run for a living, it’s my day job. The extreme sports are where my passions so you are more likely to see me jet-skiing or wakeboarding when I am not at my so-called desk!
Why does Steve like living and working with other circus employees?
- Because they are from different countries and they can learn from each other.
- Because they are from different countries and they can speak different languages.
- Because they are from different countries and they can cook well.
Presenter: Today in our studio we meet Steve, a young man inspired by his job. You’re welcome, Steve! So, at what age did you decide to become a circus performer and what inspired you to join the circus?
Steve: My father and grandfather were both performers in the circus, so I was really born into it. My grandfather had taught my father and my father taught my brother and me but it wasn’t until I was about 10 years old that I decided to follow in their footsteps because I was very shy. After a couple of years of practicing to become a clown, I became more confident and outgoing. We started with a circus in my home country of Italy and now we are traveling the United States.
Presenter: What is a typical day like at the circus for you?
Steve: It’s hard to describe a typical day at the circus as there is always something new and different going on, but normally I’ll wake up, drink a cup of coffee, eat some breakfast, and then begin to do my spiky hair while I listen to music. My hair normally takes about two hours. I then go into the arena and put on my makeup on and practice the Diabolo, which is a juggling accessory that consists of a spool being tossed and whirled on a string attached to two sticks, it’s my specialty, and then I get ready for the show. Some days I get up early to do interviews and or visit schools and hospitals to put on a special performance.
Presenter: What is one of your favorite routines?
Steve: My favorite act has to be the act that my family and I perform in. The act is called Boom Boom Pow; it’s my favourite act because I get to interact with the audience and have fun with them. Plus, I get to perform with my brother and father, so it’s a good combination.
Presenter: Are you part of a traveling circus, or do you typically stay in one place?
Steve: We travel all around America by recreational vehicles so every week we are in a different city and usually a different state, and I get to meet different people. It’s a cool experience and I’m enjoying every minute of it.
Presenter: How many hours do you have to practice in a week?
Steve: I try to practice my Diabolo as much as possible, but it depends on how many shows we have each week, how much I have to travel, and how many events we have. Overall I probably practice about four hours a week not to mention show rehearsals.
Presenter: What is it like living and working with other circus employees all the time?
Steve: Living and working with other circus employees is an amazing experience. We have performers from all over the world so to be able to learn different cultures, languages, and trying food from their country is really cool. We have nine different countries represented and we all help and learn from each other. It’s like we are one big international family.
Presenter: What skills do you think are needed to be a successful circus performer?
Steve: In order to be a successful circus performer I think you need to find a talent that you are passionate about. I was passionate about clowning because my grandfather and father were clowns and I really looked up to them. They were able to combine their love for music with the art of clowning to create a new unique style and I loved that. The other reason that I got attracted to clowning was the ability to put smiles on the faces of thousands each night; it’s an awesome feeling that I can do that.
Presenter: Are you planning to be involved with the circus your entire career or do you have other plans?
Steve: I hope to be a circus performer for as long as possible. Working with my family and being able to perform is something that I truly enjoy and I couldn’t imagine doing anything else.
Presenter: Who has been a mentor for you that has helped you reach for your dreams?
Steve: Other than my family who I’ve looked up to and have helped me and supported me throughout my career, I would say that I am my own motivation. I want to be the best that I can be and that is what motivates me. In order to create and build my own character I watched a lot of comedy shows to get inspiration from but a lot of my character has come from within me and my desire to succeed.
What does the Climate Music Project help people do except care about climate change?
- It helps people understand music better.
- It links people directly to action organizations.
- It helps people express climate change into musical compositions.
Presenter: Today in our studio we meet Steve Brown who initiated a new creative project. Why did you want to create the Climate Music Project, Steve?
Steve Brown: It’s really that at the time, I’d just finished a degree in environmental sciences and was looking for ways to combine my new knowledge with my artistic ideas. Climate change is a big issue and for a lot of people it feels like something that’s very abstract, and something we’ll live in the future, not necessarily today. And I wanted to find a way to give the idea that it is a very serious issue and that we can still solve the problem, in a way that would be understood broadly across many different communities. And music seemed to be a natural way for doing so.
Presenter: How do you express climate change into musical compositions?
Steve Brown: There are different ways you can do it. There are software programs that you can use to essentially transfer data straight into some kind of sound. The problem with presenting data through sounds is that it’s noise, generally speaking. Because it just follows the data. We made a very reasonable decision not to use that approach, but to work with a real science team to really find out where the important signals are in the data, and then to work with the composer to find creative ways to express those signals in a musical way that would be understandable for people. And that’s done by giving musical analogs to different aspects in the climate system. For example in the piece we’re currently performing, we’re modeling four aspects: CO2, Earth’s energy balance, atmospheric temperature of the Earth, and ocean Ph. And each one of those has an analog in the music.
Presenter: HYPERLINK "http://www.theclimatemusicproject.org/ faqs/" The website says the performance is most appropriate for adults and children 12 years and older. Why?
Steve Brown: My initial sense was that the music might sound a little bit too loud for small kids. Later I was proved wrong. In one of our concerts, we were at the conservatory in Oakland, I was watching the audience and a whole group of fourth graders came in and I was thinking, “Oh no, this is not going to be so great.” But the fourth graders loved it actually. In fact, one of them even stood up in front of 220 people or so in the audience and asked about the data at the end of the concert, because the class is doing a unit on climate change. I think it really depends on the maturity of the individual child because the music gets sort of loud and a little bit experimental.
Presenter: How do you engage people to care about climate change?
Steve Brown: People can feel it, because they can sense the rhythm, because they can feel it even in their own body, and they’re looking at historical references and where we are, where we might be going, it’s a much more instinctive, much more sensory experience. And that conveys a whole different sense of understanding. So what we want to do is we want to take that new understanding and we want to make easier the process of helping people in our audiences connect and channel that energy in very positive ways. The way we do that, we’re building out a network of both climate literacy and action organizations that we can then link our audiences directly to.
Presenter: What’s in the future of the Climate Music Project?
Steve Brown: For the project to really reach a lot of people and to have an impact, we need to have more content, because any one piece of music is only going to appeal to so many people. Our goal is to create lots of content in different genres of music. Starting in 2018, we’ll be developing a tool that will allow us to essentially work with composers pretty much anywhere, to create shorter work that would have a local appeal, whether it’s in Africa, whether it’s in Asia, whether it’s in South America.
Presenter: What’s the key target of the project?
Steve Brown: Ultimately, the main goal that we’re aiming for — we’re not there yet and we probably won’t be there for about year — would be interactive performances, where the audience could also in some way take part in the performance. We’d like to integrate ways for people to interact with the music, dance pieces for example. The more people can interact with the music and feel the music, the more meaningful it will be to them.
Who helped Sanchez to install “Border Tapestry”?
- Her mother and her cousin.
- Her mother and her grandmother.
- Her grandmother and her cousin.
Now we are ready to start.
Presenter: Today in our studio we meet Sanchez Hallton, the initiator of the new Border Tapestry Project. She did it with her friends and family members. We welcome you here, Sanchez! To begin with, can you describe your personal experience of the US-Mexico border?
Sanchez: My personal experience began as a child, growing up in Arizona and having family in Mexico. We took many trips into Mexico to large cities and smaller villages that would ultimately influence my worldview and my personal identity. During my middle school years we moved to Agua Prieta for a few years which meant we crossed several times a day into Douglas. We attended school in Douglas and also for our activities after school, except for dance. … The weekends were spent hanging out in Agua Prieta, going to baseball games and sitting outside listening and dancing with our neighbors. …
Presenter: How can you characterize such neighbourhood?
Sanchez: If I had to describe this region with one word, I would say, “generous”. In so many cases, binational communities are not held in the highest regard, and no matter what, the people remain simple and generous.
Presenter: How does this speak to your art practice?
Sanchez: Growing up, my interaction with the border became more multi-sided. Life existed equally on both sides. I do not remember feeling like the fence or politics was dividing our community. The border felt like a long stoplight, as we were moving from one place to another in one community. It's a really beautiful thing to have the privilege to go between two amazing countries in a matter of minutes. … When I attended college in Phoenix and began getting involved in activist groups … I quickly learned that there was a polarizing idea surrounding the border. That the border was a dangerous place with high crime and drug-dealing rates. As an artist, my goal is for the work to hold this community in the highest regard. My work does not always paint an over-idealized picture of the border but intends to celebrate the overlooked, overworked and unrealized aspects of the borderlands. I have learned through living on the border that nothing is permanent.
Presenter: How was “Border Tapestry” conceived?
Sanchez: It was conceived by borrowing fabrics that belonged to my mother and grandmother and weaving them through the border fence. The idea was to make visual the interdependence of the generational fabrics tied together to remain united, along with the existence of both countries to hold a tapestry not damaged. For that moment the fence served merely as a frame for the tapestry. On a personal level, I intended to represent how my family has created and maintained a woven lifestyle between the US and Mexico. There are not only strong economic ties between the two countries, but familial and cultural ties that keep the heart of the borderlands beating. Without close relationships bonded by love, respect and admiration, everything else would fall apart.
Presenter: How is it created or installed?
Sanchez: “Border Tapestry” was installed in 2009. The project brought my mother, cousin and me out to the fence to perform this action. My mother and I wove the fabrics onto the fence. After the installation of the tapestry, we reflected on my mother's memories of my Granny, who had died months before I was born. We spoke about how crossing the border back in her younger days was different. The movement among Douglas and Agua Prieta residents was more fluid, compared to the more visible border we know today. We then removed the fabrics as carefully as they were installed. Our audience consisted only of a border patrol agent watching from afar. When we left the site, so did he.
Presenter: What is your highest aspiration for the work?
Sanchez: My highest aspiration for viewers of this work would be to reflect on their own family stories and how they are connected with people close and far, … that through a piece like “Border Tapestry,” one could remove the physical barrier and remember that we are all made up of the same human "fabric," as idealistic as that sounds.
Presenter: What has surfaced or what have you discovered in the process of making art in this region?
Sanchez: Border fluidity is all about relationships. … Like having the best of reasons to cross the border, whether it be to visit family, eat at the best taco stands or economic trade. Human interest is the key. When the desire is there, boundaries are minimized. When common goals are shared, anything is possible.