On Oct. 10 at the new WBUR Cityspace, the independent podcast collective Multitude put on a live show featuring segments from the production company’s original podcasts. As the audience members filed in and took their seats for the event, some members of Multitude played the video game NBA Jam, previewing the fun nature of the night.
The show featured Amanda McLoughlin, the CEO of Multitude and the co-host of “Spirits”; Julia Schifini, a co-host of “Spirits”; Eric Silver and Brandon Grugle, co-hosts of "Join the Party"; and Mike Schubert, the host of “Potterless.” “Spirits” introduces listeners to myths and legends that may not be widely known, "Join the Party" focuses on Dungeons and Dragons; and “Potterless” follows a grown man as he reads the “Harry Potter” series for the very first time.
The show started off with a bit in which McLoughlin and Schifini played a guessing game in the style of a quiz show in which Schifini provided details of a Greek mythological story, and then McLoughlin guessed whether or not the story ended in a “trick” or a “treat.” If the story ended with a bad ending, then it ended in a “trick,” whereas if the story ended with a good ending, then it ended in a “treat.” McLoughlin was able to guess all of the story endings correctly, if you don't count the story that ended in both a “trick” and a “treat.”
Many in the audience said they had come to see McLoughlin and Schifini, and a live segment of “Spirits.”
“I really love ‘Spirits’ because it’s a lot of mythology that you don’t normally hear about. Like, they do the Greek stuff that we’ve all heard about, but they also just have a ton different myths from around the world that I’ve never heard of. I love mythology, and that’s very refreshing. There’s a lot of commentary, and it just makes it great,” audience member Sarah Booker said.
Ana Georgescu ’20 also attended to catch a live edition of “Spirits.”
“I was looking for something that I could listen to on the shuttle or other times when I felt I wanted my brain to keep working, but didn’t have the patience to read. I’ve always been a mythology nerd. It was really, really cool that they covered mythology that people don’t really talk about because mythology is such a white European, centrist topic. I was attracted by the fact that it was really diverse,” Georgescu said.
After the “Spirit” segment ended, Grugle and Silver performed a bit where they each pitched a podcast show to McLoughlin. Silver’s podcast was about his love and admiration for Ash Ketchum, the star of the Pokémon anime series, whereas Grugle’s was a dig at Silver, and about how Ketchum is actually the worst Pokémon trainer of all time. Then, Schubert did a live edition of “Potterless,” joined by guest Helen Zaltzman, an English podcaster. The two examined the character of Percy Weasley, and labelled him the worst. Finally, to wrap up the show, Schifini played the role of Jolene (from the Dolly Parton song) as the other members of Multitude jokingly begged her not to steal their man. Only McLoughlin was successful in not having her man stolen.
Reflecting on the show, audience member Shubhi Tandon said she thought the performances translated well to a live format.
“It was great to see it live,” Tandon said. “I think people should listen to the podcast because they’re really funny, and I think I’m going to go home and listen to the rest of them now.”
Correction: Oct. 30, 2019
A previous version of this article incorrectly stated that "Spirits" co-host Eric Schneider was in attendance. In fact, he was not a part of the show.