Just in time for another pandemic lockdown, Creative Bay of Plenty is invading the airwaves with a brand new podcast series, Creative Patapatai. Hosted by General Manager Eric Holowacz, the streaming audio show features conversations with fascinating creative people from across the Bay of Plenty. The podcast discussions proceed from an ongoing series of preint interviews developed by Holowacz that explore local arts identity, sense of place, creative and cultural memories, and that magical thing known as inspiration.
"Right after the first Covid-19 lockdown, our organisation began expanding the ways that we feature, promote, and celebrate our region's artists—hoping to foster community and celebrate unique individuals," says Holowacz. "And with this new podcast series, we take a deeper dive and learn more about their background, creative process, and influences."
Following the mid-2020 disruptions, Holowacz and his team began expanding the Bay of Plenty Creative Directory—an ever-growing digital reference and listing of Bay of Plenty, artists, performers, venues, and cultural organisations. From that source, the regional arts agency evolved a new in-depth written interview series called Creative Patapatai based on twenty curious and provocative questions. As that written content grew, and the online interviews began to populate the Creative Bay of Plenty website, it seemed logical to expand to a recorded interview format—and the new podcast series designed to stream right across lockdown and into home audio bubbles was born.
To make it happen, Creative Bay of Plenty assembled a project team of local creatives. Holowacz engaged young Tauranga creative leader Kendra Stone to serve as project producer, and partnered with Grant Hislop at Mood Media—based in Tauranga Historic Village—to oversee the technical and studio elements for the podcast. Marketing Lead Rose Treadwell then worked closely with Mount Maunganui designer Charlotte Rose and Lovely Creatures to build a strong graphic identity for the Creative Patapatai podcasts, while also developing mass distribution platforms to bring the interview series to the world.
"It was a truly wonderful spirit of collaboration and project management," says Holowacz, "With everyone working throughout the pandemic and with a sense of mission and creative support over the past six months."
Creative Patapatai the Podcast is now streaming on Spotify, iTunes, and on the Creative Bay of Plenty website. The first three interview episodes feature film-maker and creative director Louie Bolton, emerging curator and museum professional Ellie Smith, and photographer and visual communicator Kendra Stone. Each episode is between a half hour and forty-five minutes in length, and additional interviews are now being planned.
"This has been one of the most meaningful and rewarding projects to have come out of our pandemic work," says Holowacz. "The subjects have been gracious and engaging, the conversations have been fascinating, and the project team was simply awesome in every way. And now we offer these new podcast interviews—and Bay of Plenty creative voices—to the world!"