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Pick of the Podcasts: Earwig, Dan Snow, Dan Snow’s History Hit, Dr Beckmann Uncovered, Podcasts

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It’s venues like The Tron in Glasgow where innovative, contemporary, risk-taking theatre can often be found.

With the pandemic forcing the closure of the industry for more than a year, that voice could have been at risk of being lost, but thanks to this series, described as sonic theatre podcasts, some of Scotland’s best creatives are still able to share their work.

Earwig is six new podcasts by Scottish-based playwrights, commissioned especially to explore the possibilities of sonic theatre. Designed to be listened to on headphones, incorporating text, sound design and music, Earwig aims to “challenge, inspire, envelop and embrace its audience, inviting them deep into the inner world of its characters, placing the listener at the centre of the drama”.

The six playwrights were invited to step into the bodies of their listeners when writing the short pieces. The list of writers includes Jo Clifford, who has won three Fringe First awards, Hannah Lavery, whose autobiographical play The Drift toured Scotland as part of the National Theatre of Scotland and was awarded a New Playwrights’ Award by the Playwrights Studio Scotland, and Johnny McKnight, known for his off-beat pantomimes.

Other writers involved are stage and screenwriter Morna Pearson, Jo Clifford, who has written over 100 pieces in every medium, and Luke Sutherland, who has written three novels and two BBC radio plays.

Creator, composer and sound designer, Danny Krass, said: “I’ve been looking to explore how music and sound interact with text in a deeper and more focused way than theatrical stage productions allow. I am fascinated by the personal and intimate act of listening on headphones, and how this can shift your perceptions and inner state.”

Apple, Spotify, Google

Dr Beckmann Uncovered

If you’re in spring cleaning mode and just can’t get enough information on household chores, then Dr Beckmann –the high street cleaning brand – has jumped on the podcast bandwagon and will be offering up all manner of tips and analysis behind cleaning.

In the opening episode, Gemma Bray, creator of The Organised Mum Method, takes a look at how the last 12 months have changed the way we clean our homes.

Dan Snow’s History Hit

With more than a million listens per month, this is the most popular history podcast in the UK.

It’s little wonder. Apart from Snow’s name value, the frequent output of podcasts, special guests such as Michael Palin, and the wide array of subjects, from the Coventry Blitz to Myanmar and Britain’s Warrior Queen to The Bletchley Girls, this is a one-stop shop for anyone with an interest in the past.