Dreams of a Podcast Party

The show, sans Taylor Swift

My mom tells me that one’s ability to have vivid dreams is genetic. I’m not sure if that’s been scientifically proven, but at the very least it seems to be true in our case. My dreams have crisp details; I read in them; I often formulate interview questions if I’m dreaming about work.

This weekend, I dreamed about something that my mind (conscious and subconscious) has been obsessing over lately: Nashville Public Radio’s Podcast Party. It’s a big variety show that the station is putting on, in which we’re adapting our four podcasts to the stage. It will be really cool, and I’m not just saying that because I’m planning it.

The Versify poets and musician had a second rehearsal on Friday, and their collaboration is hauntingly beautiful. The puppeteers are meeting this weekend to build their Curious Nashville set. The Neighbors episode that Jakob Lewis will be reading live has gotten hundreds of thousands of downloads online. And my part of the show — a Movers & Thinkers live interview — is coming along too, although I admittedly always feel underprepared.

It was with these updates in mind that I fell asleep on Friday (with the Versify music still in my head). It’s no surprise that I dreamt about it in full sound and color. It was the night of the show, and things were going great. A little odd — like, the theater had created props of giant dragons that roared whenever the poets spoke a powerful line — but great. A local TV station was broadcasting the whole thing live. The audience was growing by the minute.

We worked our way through the set — here’s Neighbors,  here’s the puppet show — and as we got to the end, I realized that I had forgotten about the Movers & Thinkers interview. I hadn’t printed out my questions. I hadn’t written introductions. Fortunately, I’ve had these panic dreams before, so while sleeping, I’ve gotten better at handling them. Deep breath, I thought to myself. Maybe I could ask my guests to introduce themselves. I could definitely formulate some questions on the fly. I just needed a few more minutes to prepare.

And then, as if by miracle, Taylor Swift appeared.

In my dream, it made perfect sense. She is from Nashville, so why wouldn’t she perform at Podcast Party? She took the stage, presumably to give me more time, but I couldn’t concentrate. By this point, the theater had become an arena, so big and dazzling that I couldn’t see the end of the audience from backstage. This was it, I thought. This was Podcast Party.

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