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The Coffee Hour

The Coffee Hour

By Adam Venrick
A weekly podcast produced through Denison University's "The Doobie" radio station and hosted by Adam Venrick.
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The Unparalleled Adventure of Ichabod Crane & Prof. Cushion (Venrick & Poe's Halloween Hit Parade #2)

The Coffee Hour

Genrecast, Episode 4; Movie Soundtracks
Adam, William and Josh talk about the best film soundtracks. 
January 21, 2021
Way Back When
Adam and Josh (now Seniors and therefore tired and elderly) reflect on things they wish they'd done as Freshmen.
January 15, 2021
Genrecast, Episode 3: Metamovies
This week on Genrecast, Adam and Josh focus on a very distinct and odd kind of film: Movies about Movies, a unique (and often polarizing) sort of  film that occurs when Hollywood turns its cameras back on itself. They discuss the good (Sunset BLVD.), the bad (Hail, Caesar!) and the baffling (Inland Empire) as well as what do good and bad films in this genre seem to have in common.  Hint: Bad metafilms are more sentimental. 
January 10, 2021
Espresso Shot #2: Unprecendented
The period between November 3, 2020 and January 6, 2021 has marked one of the most fraught times in American politics. In the last days of the Trump administration, the pressure has been raised by claims of election fraud by the President, and possibly some actual election fraud committed by the President. All of this came boiling over on the 6th of January, 2021, as the Senate sat down to certify the 2020 election results, when armed protestors stormed the Capitol building. Adam is joined again by Dr. Paul Djupe, of the Denison Political Science department, to discuss the past two months, the events of the capitol and what it may mean for Donald Trump, both the Republican and Democratic parties and the future of elections. This interview was recorded at 1:00 PM EST on January 7th. As this is a developing story, details may have changed by the time you hear this. 
January 8, 2021
Genrecast, Episode 2.5: "The Best Films of Our Lives (Pt. 2)"
Adam, Josh and William continue their audit of the best films of their lives, resuming with the 2010s.
January 2, 2021
Genrecast, Episode 2: "The Best Films of Our Lives (Pt.1)"
For New Year's, Adam, Josh and special guest star William Main (N. Main Street) review the best films of each year they've been alive. 
January 2, 2021
Genrecast, Episode 1: Monster Movies
In the first episode of this limited series film podcast, Adam and Josh discuss monster movies from Frankenstein to the Babadook and everything in between. Content Warning for frank discussion of violence some of which is sexual in nature.
December 18, 2020
Venrick & Poe: The Unmistakable Taste of Whale Meat
Adam and Josh profile some weird animals... and some exotic eats.
December 11, 2020
311. Adam Calls a Stranger
On the final episode of this season, Adam sits down with Steve Feke (Denison class of 1969), the screenwriter behind the cult classic horror film When A Stranger Calls (1979) starring Carol Kane, Colleen Dewhurst and Charles Durning. The two talk about Steve's days at Denison, his starting out in Hollywood, and how to succeed in showbiz based on networking and bluffing. All this and more on The Coffee Hour. 
November 20, 2020
310. How This Whole Mess Plays Out
This week's episode is about the election. Adam talks with Dr. Paul Djupe, a political science professor at Denison University to talk about the 2020 election, how Donald Trump became a social media president, how evangelical voting has changed over the years, the frustrating future of the electoral college, what awaits Joe Biden over the next few days and weeks, the legal logistics of recounts and what will happen if Donald Trump refuses to concede.  Not to mention, what might be in store for us in 2024... 
November 13, 2020
309. The Vaccine Episode
This week, on The Coffee Hour, Adam talks with biology professor, Dr. Lina Yoo, whose background is in the science of immunology. The two discuss the history of vaccines, the idea of herd immunity, health-care rationing during the COVID-19 pandemic and the anti-vaccine movement. All this and more on The Coffee Hour. 
November 6, 2020
308. The Premature Burial
For Halloween, Adam takes on another classic by Edgar Allan Poe.
October 30, 2020
Talkin' About Ghosts (Venrick & Poe's Halloween Hit Parade #4)
In this episode, Adam and Josh talk about ghosts. First, they discuss Granville's own hotel attraction The Buxton Inn and Adam's own creepy experience with it and the various Licking County ghost towns, then, they talk about the Skunk Ape, Florid's answer to Big Foot. This is followed by a spirited discussion of the Spiritualism movement and its adherents, including painter Hilma af Klint. And finally, Josh shares his own personal ghost story and Josh and Adam talk about tarot, psychics and ouija boards. 
October 25, 2020
307. Sticky Tabs
This week on The Coffee Hour, Adam sits down with Dr. Jeffrey Thompson, a professor researching the science of Epigenetics, a fascinating genetic and evolutionary study that suggests we may be more influenced by our ancestors than we think.
October 23, 2020
Legends of Ohio: All Hail the Frogman! (Venrick & Poe's Halloween Hit Parade #2)
On this episode, Adam & Josh talk about some of Ohio's many urban legends including an orphanage that may have never existed, a pirate's haunted painting, a haunted street in the middle of Columbus' most happening suburb and of course... the Loveland Frog. All this and more on Venrick & Poe's Halloween Hit Parade.
October 21, 2020
The Unparalleled Adventure of Ichabod Crane & Prof. Cushion (Venrick & Poe's Halloween Hit Parade #2)
Adam sits down with Genevieve Pfister, a Denison student to talk about history. Specifically, the Ohio Historical Connection's Yearly Event: All Hallow's Eve. This family-centered festival of folklore and fun is near and dear to Genevieve (and her family since her mother works for the Historical Connection) but it brings back more than a few memories for Adam as well. This episode talks about history, folklore and how attractions such as this are transforming in the face of Coronavirus.
October 17, 2020
306. Gruesome Entertainments
As Halloween draws closer, Adam sits down with Dr. Jonathan Walley, a professor of film at Denison University to talk about all things scary; the sociological origins and importance of horror movies, the cycles that they go through, what makes something "horror" and the uncanny. Plus, hear the professor's personal recommendations.  All this and more on The Coffee Hour. 
October 16, 2020
Cabinet of Oddities (Venrick & Poe's Halloween Hit Parade #1)
On the first episode of this Halloween mini-series featuring Adam Venrick and Josh Poe, Adam sits down with librarian Kent Huffman to talk about his cabinet of oddities in his office, various local urban legends, dark music and why people like scary stories, as well as Kafka, Lovecraft and Clive Barker the real life horrors of phrenology and medical theatre.  Photos available at
October 14, 2020
305. Unconscious Learning
Adam sits down with Denison Psychology Major, Zeenat Tabaku to talk about her research into the perception of race, gender and anger in the work space. Along the way, they talk about the problematic nature of television, whether or not Sigmund Freud should still be taught in schools and why the 2020 election came down to Biden and Trump. All this and more on The Coffee Hour.
October 9, 2020
304. The Chicken Story
Adam sits down with Denison alum, playwright and screenwriter Jeffrey Hatcher (writer of Compleat Female Stage Beauty and The Good Liar) to discuss how he got his start in writing and what working in the theatre looks like in the era of Coronavirus, as well as Jeff's body of work and several stories involving Orson Welles.
October 2, 2020
303. Livin' That High/Low Life
In this episode of The Coffee Hour, Adam sits down with singer/song-writer Aoife O'Donovan to promote her digital concert at Denison. Discussed in this episode are Aoife's origins as a musician, how COVID has disrupted the music industry, the importance of mask wearing and how to be political without writing political songs. All this and more on this episode of The Coffee Hour.
September 25, 2020
302. ...We All Fall Down
Adam sits down with Dr. John Soderberg, a professor of Anthropology/Sociology at Denison University to discuss Crisis, Collapse and Resiliency: How collapse occurs in various civilizations (Rome, the Mayans, etc.), the warning signs and what comes after it. And, more importantly, a discussion about whether or not Coronavirus will cause collapse and what we as a society can and should do about it. 
September 18, 2020
301. 20% Theatre, 80% Capitalism
Adam is joined once more by Imani Congdon, a poet and playwright who has recently graduated from Denison University and whose work So Full I Could Burst is being performed there at the end of September. The two have a conversation about the way that White American theatre often tends to erase Black joy, the way that large-scale, highly tourist based theatrical institutions tend to resort to telling the same story over and over again and the importance of giving young artists the spotlight. 
September 11, 2020
214. A Doobie Love Story
This week, for the Season 2 finale, Adam sits down with Jeff Soltesz and Liesel Pollvogt, two alums of both Denison and the Doobie station who have been married for years. The two tell their story, from meeting in college and bonding over similar music taste, to dating long distance as both of them went abroad to their opinions on how to make a relationship work, as well as what they miss most about Denison and what they feel should be brought back from the 90s. All this and more on The Coffee Hour. 
May 7, 2020
213. Copper Handles
This week on The Coffee Hour, Adam sits down with Jay Snyder the owner of SteamRoller Bagels, a small business in Granville, OH. The two discuss being a small business owner in the times of Coronavirus, the quarantine, mask rules, what philosophical takeaways people should have, the back-to-work protests, why people hoard, what people can do to support small businesses and Tiger King. All this and more on The Coffee Hour.
May 3, 2020
212. Radio Granville
On this episode of The Coffee Hour, Adam sits down with the head-honcho of The Doobie, herself: Rachel Weaver. Rachel discusses her leadership policies, how to be the bad guy when necessary her early life in Nashville (including what celebrities used to come to her swim practices), her introduction to radio (including her dream internship at her favorite station), the future of radio in the age of Spotify and Apple Music, how deal with being over committed, the reason Adam was hesitant to get Spotify and Rachel and Adam’s desert island albums (including the tape that melted into Rachel’s car.) All this and more on The Coffee Hour.
May 3, 2020
211. Such Sad Thinkers With Such Excellent Beards
This week on The Coffee Hour, Adam sits down with Denison professor of Anthropology/Sociology Dr. Hosna Sheikholeslami. (Aka Dr. Sheik.) The two discuss the concept of Anomie (depression caused by extensive deregulation) and how it can be seen in the time of COVID-19. They discuss different government responses, ways to combat anomie and what could happen after the quarantine ends. Plus, what the Coronavirus teaches us about the thoroughly modernized, hyper-capitalist world we live in. And… the excellent beards of the fathers of sociology. All this and more on The Coffee Hour.
May 3, 2020
4110. Dispatches From 2040
On this episode, in order to bring some humor to these Coronavirus-ridden times, Adam sits down with his friend Ethan McAtee and the two take you to 2040, where the Coffee Hour is now an intergalactic treasure in its 41st Season due to Adam’s purchasing of the FCC, both now have thriving movie careers. Adam discusses his 3.5 EGOT wins, while Ethan discusses his journey as a director, how he survived the Coronavirus and what the next great threat to humanity will be. Also covered are all the sequels to hit movies that have sprung up since then, a history of the Denison University of the future (now the food court of the Republic of Easton Town Center), the early villain based on the Vanderbilt family and Jamie Lee Curtis. All this and more on The Coffee Hour.
May 3, 2020
209. Adam & Christian Eat a Shoe
On this episode of The Coffee Hour, Adam continues his series on how students are surviving the Coronavirus by interviewing Christian Miller, a Denison senior and film student. The two talk about how film classes are going on during a period of remote learning, the duo’s Academy Award Ignored film about an agnostic fish, how to get in to older films and their quarantine film recs. All this and more on The Coffee Hour.
May 3, 2020
208. Love in the Time of Corona
This week on The Coffee Hour, Adam begins his “off-air” series of profiles in the way that people are responding to COVID-19, by interviewing Adriana Culotta, a Denison senior who had the last fourth of her year uprooted by the virus. They discuss life back home, Adriana trying to plan for her career, Adriana’s French boyfriend (and his and Adriana’s continually thwarted attempts to go visit each other), how to keep your spirits up in this incredibly dark time and how to keep supporting small restaurants. All this and more on The Coffee Hour.
May 3, 2020
207. If the Shoe Falls
This week on The Coffee Hour, Adam sits down with Helen Thornton, a stage manager who has written a book on her craft. Throughout the show’s run, Adam has sat down with a lot of theatremakers, and yet stagecraft has remained up in the air. Helen and Adam change that, going through Helen’s introduction to her love of theatre at a young age, her early inklings to stagecraft. They then get into a frank discussion about Adam’s problem with transitions before playing a “hypothetical game,” (in which a director (Adam) pitches several bad ideas to his stage manager (Helen).) Finally, they discuss Helen’s evolution in her craft, throughout her time in college, what inspired her to write her book and what she hopes to get from it. All this and more on The Coffee Hour.
May 3, 2020
206. Creating a Universe
This week on The Coffee Hour, Adam sits down with Denison alum,  writer and English teacher Sam Heyman. The two have a table read of a play that Sam wrote in college, (Adam plays God),  then discuss the play, Sam’s experiences both before, during and after college and the importance of trying to carve a space for yourself. Then, Sam flips the script and interviews Adam about his experience growing up in a world dominated by technology and trying to find a way to keep your head above water in a society increasingly invested in joining. All this and more on The Coffee Hour.
May 3, 2020
205. Feeling Alien
This week on The Coffee Hour, Adam sits down with Camron Alten-Dunkle to discuss "Space Girl," by Mora V. Harris, the play Camron is directing through Denison Independent Theatre Association (DITA). The two talk about the play, but also about themes of alienation, isolation and joining things on college campuses, as well as Camron's fascination with space, his abandoned aspirations of becoming an astronaut and his theory about aliens. All this and more on The Coffee Hour.
May 3, 2020
204. Reasons to Come Back
In this episode of The Coffee Hour, Adam begins part one of a series of “Alumni Profiles,” in which Adam will delve into the psychology of people who have recently graduated from college, discussing what their lives are like now, how they get by without mandated structure and the feeling of being a part of the working world. In this episode, Adam sits down with Gabe Schenker, Denison Class of 2018, a former Theatre/Economics Double Major to Discuss Gabe’s life now working with the Louisville Soccer Club, why Economics might be more fun than it’s given credit for and more importantly, the urge to come back to college after you’ve left and the imposter syndrome that can be related to it. All this and more on The Coffee Hour.
May 3, 2020
203. The Rooster Episode
This week on The Coffee Hour, Adam sits down with Imani Congdon (whom some repeat listeners will remember as being a reader for The Poe Show episode) who is a Classics and English (Creative Writing) double major at Denison University. The two discuss Imani’s field as a Hellenist, the often exclusive and problematic nature of classics as a field and how various myths have been co-opted by American culture. Plus, Imani’s favorite pot in the Met and which pieces of pop-culture she thinks do the most damage to the classics field. All this and more on The Coffee Hour.
May 3, 2020
202. Let Them Eat Lunch
This week on The Coffee Hour, Adam sits down with Sarah Schaff, Gregg Gassman & Shane Hoffman, three members of Team Vittles a central Ohio based food service organization, working to help feed underprivileged kids. The four discuss poverty, “Lunch Shaming,” the way that hunger impacts learning, the stigma around food-insecurity, hunger in higher-education and what is being done to help. All this and more on The Coffee Hour. To see what Team Vittles is doing, you can visit their website: For any follow up questions, contact Gregg at
May 3, 2020
201. A Blue Stop Sign Outside Boulder, Colorado
On this week’s episode of The Coffee Hour, to kick off the new season, Adam sits down with Eleni Papaleonardos, a professor of theatre at Denison University and the artistic director of Columbus’ Available Light Theatre Company, to discuss the way humans communicate. They talk about Eleni’s Dyslexia, her status as a bi-lingual (Greek and English), dual-citizen (Greece and America) and an educator. Also discussed are the ways we communicate non-verbally, the way we communicate with our bodies and Eleni’s study of mime (taught by Marcel Marceau). The two also discuss the way American schools mishandle neurodiverse and students and students who don’t only speak English, as well as what it was like for Eleni to grow up the child of an immigrant family in small town, Ohio. All this and more on the Coffee Hour. For more information on Eleni's company, click the link below.
May 3, 2020
112. The Albinism Episode
In this episode of The Coffee Hour, Adam sits down with anthropology professor Dr. Jane Saffitz to discuss the persecution of people with albinism in Tanzania and the incredibly toxic and problematic Western narrative surrounding it. They talk about Anthropology’s role in human rights, how NGOs can both help and hurt their causes, the colonialist origins of the persecution and the role of Anthropology in the modern world. All this and more on The Coffee Hour.
May 3, 2020
111. Head of Terminations
In this episode, Adam presents a reading of a short story he wrote entitled “Head of Terminations.” In this satire of corporate politics, a group of highly unethical and spineless executives at a nameless company see an opportunity to enact their professional agenda with impunity when an employee brings her enthusiastic son to work with her for Take-Your-Child-to-School-Day. But things start to go awry when the boy gets too overzealous in his new position. All this and more on The Coffee Hour.
May 3, 2020
110. The Gods of Seattle
In this episode of The Coffee Hour, Adam sits down with friend and Seattle native Maren Clark, who knows a lot about kidney dialysis. They discuss what kidneys do, what dialysis does when the kidneys don’t work properly and the history of dialysis, the Scribner Shunt as well as the “Life or Death Committee” (often called “The God Committee”), the shadowy group of seven people, all from different walks of life, who were forced to ration dialysis to patients in the early years. Through this, they discuss the ethics of modern medicine, Bioethics and what they would do if they were in the position to decide which patients had to live or die. All this and more on The Coffee Hour. For more information about dialysis and the Committee, read the articles Maren references here: LIFE magazine article: LIFE magazine article November 1962 issue. The cover of the issue is about nuclear missiles and the Cuban missile crisis. Shana's article is listed as the article of the week. Source for invention of dialysis: I actually couldn't find the right one but I found the same info here: A brief history of dialysis More interesting sites and articles: Early History of Dialysis: a view from Seattle
May 3, 2020
109. A List of Things I Know
This week, Adam performs an original radio play A List of Things I Know, a dark comedy about an American family struggling to survive after their father is imprisoned by the North Korean government. As the narrator and his strong-willed but lonely sister Janice attempt to navigate through a variety of surreal experiences as they go about their lives as high school students, they also have to deal with feelings towards their mother, a former newspaper columnist who used their most embarrassing family secrets in her columns. All this and more in this episode, which combines surreal humor and genuine sadness on The Coffee Hour. Written and performed by Adam Frost-Venrick.
May 3, 2020
108. David Bowie vs. Kanye West
This week on The Coffee Hour, Adam sits down with Diego Rubey and Jaden Richeson, co-founders of the indie trap/bedroom pop band Clever Space Plants. They discuss how the band formed, musical influences and reveal the title of the group’s upcoming second album, as well as the story of the group’s three week rush to record their first one. Also covered are Jaden’s origins in music and songwriting and Diego’s play Tiny Beautiful Things which is being produced through Columbus’ own Available Light Theatre Company. And the “David Bowie/Kanye West Theory” also comes into play a Diego gives us their thoughts about Kanye’s new album Jesus Is King. All this and more on this week’s episode of The Coffee Hour.
May 3, 2020
107. The Poe Show
This week on The Coffee Hour, we celebrate Halloween with four classic tales of terror by American short story maestro Edgar Allan Poe. Together, with a team of actors, and a self-composed score, Adam brings to life four stories. In “Metzengerstein,” Ethan McAtee tells a story of one family decimated by a rival, and the supernatural revenge taken by a mysterious horse. Emerson Prond tells a tale of murder, madness and hallucinatory guilt in “The Tell Tale Heart.” In “A Cask of Amontillado,” Adam Venrick tells a tale of horrible revenge set against the drunken folly of carnival. And finally, Imani Congdon tells a story of an avaricious masquerade beset by illness at the hands of a mysterious guest in “The Masque of the Red Death.” These four tales are designed to thrill, shock and excite listeners. We hope you enjoy.
May 3, 2020
106. Theatrical Coffee
On this week’s episode of The Coffee Hour, Adam sits down with Denison alums Francesca DiFrancesco and Reilly Reikenbach Harring (both class of ‘19). They discuss their careers in theatre, Franny’s writing and performing, Reilly’s costume design and singing, as well as what characters they’d like to play and who inspires them the most. All this and more on this week’s episode of The Coffee Hour.
May 3, 2020
105. Literary Coffee
In this episode of The Coffee Hour, Adam sits down with Denison Creative Writing professor and author of If Only You People Could Follow Directions, Jessica Nelson to discuss why we tell stories, why we tell our own stories, “The Process,” why we like stories that scare us, what authors do and don’t inspire them and even humanity’s inevitable mortality. All this and more on this week’s episode of The Coffee Hour.
May 3, 2020
104. New Religious Coffee
Adam sits down with Denison Professor of Religion, Black Studies and Anthropology/Sociology, Dr. John Jackson to discuss New Religious Movements (Cults, Sects, UFO Religions.) They talk about why people join New Religious Movements, what happens when they turn to violence, their portrayal in film and television and New Religious Movements in the age of iPhones. All this and more on The Coffee Hour.
May 3, 2020
103. Bluegrass Coffee
In this episode, Adam sits down with Adam Schlenker, the head of the Bluegrass department at Denison University and Bebe Blumenthal, one of the department's star students to discuss the genre history, its future and the college's involvement, as well as how the two became interested in making music.
May 3, 2020
102. Horse Coffee
In the Fall of 2019, Denison University presented a licensed theatrical adaptation of the TV show BoJack Horseman host Adam Venrick (who appeared in the play) talks with the play's star Aidan Iannarino about theatre, dream roles and Andrew Lloyd Webber. 
May 3, 2020
101. Coffee and Bagels
In the first episode of The Coffee Hour, a podcast recorded at Denison University's "The Doobie" radio station, host Adam Venrick interviews local bagel-shop owner Jay Snyder about his involvement in local politics, dead rockstars and cemetery upkeep. 
May 3, 2020