Foundation News

Submissions Open for New VS Cohosts

After five glorious seasons, Franny Choi and Danez Smith are leaving the VS podcast, and are inviting you to apply to lead the show into the future, starting with Season 6! Franny and Danez have worked to make this Webby-nominated beauty the podcast that it is today, interviewing 87 poets in recording studios, Zoom screens, and in front of live studio audiences. Now we are seeking a team of new hosts who care deeply about poetry as a living art and can guide audiences through deep, joyful, thought-provoking conversations with the people who make it.

"As hosts of VS, we've gotten to laugh with and learn from close to 100 of the most brilliant poets writing today—and we've barely scratched the surface of the wealth that is contemporary poetry,” said current co-host Franny Choi. “As much as I love what we've made over the last five years, I also can't wait to see how VS grows in the care of new hosts. "

VS will remain a longform interview podcast that features poets discussing the ideas that move them, with a focuses on poets who are BIPOC, ALAANA, queer, trans, disabled, and those who have other, often intersecting, marginalized identities. You can apply by yourself or with your poetry bestie so long as you bring your A-game, curiosity, and your full, beautiful self. 

“The most important thing about the next hosts is that they love poetry and they love talking to the people that make it,” said cohost Danez Smith. “I’m elated to pass these mics on and see what the next hosts will bring to us. Anyone applying, just know that being yourself and bringing your own wit, your own humor, your own perspective, and your own wonders is exactly what we are looking for. We aren’t looking for the new-Franny or the new-Danez: we are looking for you.” 

Submission Details
Your submission should include as much of the following as possible:

  • Cover Sheet that includes: name, pronouns, email, phone number, geographic location, and a short biographical note (100 words) 
  • Audio Clip (~3min)
    • Introduce yourself! Tell us your name and pronouns, and give us your short bio.
    • Answer our icebreaker: What’s moving you these days?
    • Answer our serious question: What is your relationship to poetry and why do you want to contribute to the public conversation about it? Who are you in relationship with and how do you bring them/others into the (poetry) conversation?
      • As a part of your response, tell us about 2-3 poets you would like to interview and why.
    • Play a game with us:
      • If applying as a pair: play “This vs. That” with each other. (Don’t know this game? Listen to an episode of VS for an explanation and example!)
      • If applying solo: play “Blurb, Edit, Burn” with Emily Dickinson, Walt Whitman, and Langston Hughes and tell us why. (Choose one person’s manuscript to write a blurb for, one person’s poetry manuscript to edit, and one person’s poetry manuscript to burn) 

Submissions should be in English and applicants should plan for majority-English audio. Applicants will be contacted in early September if they have been selected for the interview stage of the process. Each host is paid $1,000 per episode.

Email submissions and questions to [email protected] 

Deadline to submit: August 20, 2021

Stay up to date on all things VS, subscribe to the podcast wherever you listen and follow us on Twitter.

—The VS Team

 

Originally Published: July 20th, 2021