Before the Applause Podcast

Before the Applause Podcast Trailer

July 17, 2023 Before the Applause Season 1 Episode 1
Before the Applause Podcast
Before the Applause Podcast Trailer
Show Notes Transcript

Welcome to the Before the Applause Podcast.

The Before the Applause Podcast, hosted by David Watson, is an audio deep-dive into what it really takes to create all the incredible arts and cultural experiences that we’re fortunate to have in our daily lives.
In this introduction to the Before the Applause Podcast, David talks about the inspiration behind creating the show, why you should listen, subscribe and tell everyone you know about it, as well as what you can expect from our upcoming series. 

The Before the Applause Podcast is available for you to listen to across all your favourite podcast platforms, and don’t forget to subscribe so you don’t miss a thing. Please do tell your colleagues, networks, friends and family about us, and stay connected with us across all the usual social media platforms.


If you’ve got any burning questions, want to share your own insights, recommend a guest or be one yourself, then we’d love to hear from you. You can direct message on any of our social accounts or email

Before the Applause: Trailer

[00:00:00] David: Welcome to Episode 0 of this all shiny and new podcast, Before the Applause.

[00:00:19] I'm your host, David Watson, and I'm excited to have you on whatever this journey will become, as I scour these green and pleasant lands to find interesting people to talk to about what it really takes to create all the incredible arts and cultural experiences that we're fortunate to have in our daily lives, and available in venues, in our communities, and through digital platforms.

[00:00:38] From brilliant operas, musicals, theatre productions, festivals, films, through to video games, exhibitions, radio shows, and of course, a whole lot more. 

[00:00:49] During the pandemic, the creative industries were what stopped us from going completely insane. We got to enjoy films, TV shows, books, and even livestream, performances from musicians, comedians, and even taking virtual exhibitions.

[00:01:03] It's a known thing that the arts are there for us during the hard times. Such as it was during World War 1 and 2, and once again, the sector was there during the pandemic. 

[00:01:12] The problem still for me is, is that the sector and in particular the talent that make all these great things happen, gets very little recognition.

[00:01:20] The end products themselves get the limelight of course, and certain individuals, but for me, what about all those people who are part of that journey to create something amazing? 

[00:01:32] I decided I wanted to capture what feels like a regular occurrence for me. And that is crossing paths with some fascinating and super talented people.

[00:01:40] I'm really lucky in what I get to do, and I get to work with all sorts of talent, whether that might be producers, marketeers, costume designers, tech directors, runners, data analysts, writers, visitor experience, staff, chefs, fundraisers, composers, and a whole lot more. They're all really critical components to making what we take for granted. 

[00:02:00] I love chatting or gassing, as some people call it, and I do a lot of it. 

[00:02:05] I find people fascinating and everybody's story is different, and everybody has a story to tell. 

[00:02:11] I think we can learn so much from listening to others. 

[00:02:13] Don't get me wrong, people can talk a lot of crap as well, but by meeting and listening to lots of people, you'll soon get to the point of being able to filter out the hot air, something quite prominent in the arts, and get to the substance and important stuff.

[00:02:27] You'll learn things that can help you in your career. Discover things you had no idea about. Forge partnerships and relationships for great collaborations in the future.

[00:02:36] As I say, I encounter lots of people and have worked with some amazing talent over the years. 

[00:02:40] I want to turn these connections into conversations and put it out there, which others might want to listen to, maybe connect with, be inspired by, and of course, enjoy.

[00:02:50] So what qualifies me to be talking about all of this? Well, I hope what qualifies me in the main is that I really care about this stuff, sharing the stage with others, helping people to get into the creative industries and have exciting and fulfilling careers. 

[00:03:05] Of course, it also helps that I work in the industry as well.

[00:03:09] It's been about 20 years now, which is quite scary to say aloud. I started out training to be a professional dancer in Leeds and went on to perform and eventually choreograph work. 

[00:03:18] It was a great experience, and dance is something I'm deeply passionate about and always will be. But I became fascinated very quickly with everything it took to make a great show.

[00:03:27] All of those people behind the scenes with such different skills and talent, the average person just wouldn't know about that or even question it. I decided after performing, I wanted to move on to the other side, so to speak. 

[00:03:37] So here I am. I've had various different roles in companies. I've worked for organisations such as Rambert Dance Company, the Royal Opera House, which houses The Royal Ballet, The Royal Opera, and their wonderful orchestra.

[00:03:49] I've worked on the opening and closing ceremonies for London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic ceremonies. I've done a stint with English National Ballet, and even been part of UK City of Culture in Hull in 2017. 

[00:04:00] I also have worked with Birmingham Royal Ballet, and most recently at National Museums Liverpool. 

[00:04:06] In and around and all between all of this I've been a consultant, I've produced shows, I've developed business strategies. I've directed photo shoots and music videos. I've even created brands for companies as well as actually doing all the things which make it real, like being on the ground, running around like an idiot at the 11th hour looking for duct tape, those special tea bags, or finding out where the artist has gone.

[00:04:28] I've also been on board for amazing organisations, including Dance Umbrella, Islington Arts Factory, Middle Child Theatre, One Dance UK, and most recently I've become chair of trustees for Back to Ours, a great charity working in communities in Hull. I'm also chair of the board for the Powerhouse organisation that is Storyhouse in Chester

[00:04:46] -a really unique venue with a theatre, library and cinema all under one roof. 

[00:04:51] I've seen a lot, I've done a lot of different roles. And I've worked with so many different people making stuff happen. 

[00:04:58] This podcast is my attempt to put my money where my mouth is, so to speak.

[00:05:02] Bring all these people together, have these conversations, and let's discover what happens before the applause.

[00:05:08] So this podcast should be great listening for those in the sector, those looking to join and everything in between. 

[00:05:15] For the first season of this podcast, I'm going to be talking with a range of people from different disciplines who've had all kinds of jobs and involvement in the creative industries, helping to give us amazing arts and cultural experiences for big stages, small stages, the screen in our communities, and even in our ears. 

[00:05:33] You can expect new episodes every other week, released on Sundays. 

[00:05:38] The Before the Applause podcast is available for you to listen to across all your favourite podcast platforms. And don't forget to subscribe so you don't miss an episode. 

[00:05:47] Please do tell your colleagues, networks, friends and family about us, and stay connected with us across all the usual social media platforms by searching @beforeapplause.

[00:05:58] If you've got any burning questions, want to share your own insights, recommend a guest, or be one yourself, then we'd love to hear from you. 

[00:06:05] You can direct message us on any of our social accounts or email 

[00:06:12] So, grab a cup of something nice, and join me as we discover more before the applause.