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Pictured: Matthew Allen, Community Producer Liaison with BRIC's Brooklyn Free Speech TV & Podcast Network
Photo: Jessica Hills


I have been working at BRIC for over 10 years. I’ve been here so long, I remember when we were still using video tapes! One of my favorite memories of working at BRIC time was returning to 647 Fulton Street after two years of renovation. It gave me so much joy to know that every day I come to a place that’s open to the public and has all disciplines of BRIC under one roof.

I am passionate about my work as community producer liaison because I enjoy helping producers make connections with each other, not only just to volunteer for one another, but also to foster future collaboration and inspiration. Over the past few years at BRIC, I’ve been able to flex another creative muscle: directing. I’ve directed several BRIC related captures, including many Stoop Series events, BRIC Media Talks events, and the annual BRIC JazzFest. Directing provides an ability to make TV art; to guide the attributes of many talented people on set and in front of the camera to make something special.

When I’m not at BRIC helping the producers, I, too, like to be creative. I’m a music journalist and have been for 10 years. I’ve written hundreds of articles for various print and online publications, including EBONY, JET, The Village Voice, Mass Appeal, and Wax Poetics.

I’ve been fortunate enough to interview some of the best and brightest musical minds of my life; Quincy Jones, Smokey Robinson, Jill Scott, Brian McKnight and DJ Jazzy Jeff, just to name a few.

Writing has always been special to me. As a teenager growing up in Syracuse, New York, I used the pen and paper to craft short stories, and semi-autobiographical monologues as a catharsis to an adolescence spend trying to fit in with people. Along the way, my love for music, which was founded by my parents and older siblings, meshed with my writing. From the start, music has been my favorite thing about life. It’s not just something to have on in the background to help pass the time or deviate tension, but a way to help relate to mankind; to bond with my family; to express emotions within me that I thought I could only relate to.

I’ve never restricted any kind of music from reaching my heart and soul. If you put my iPod on shuffle, the 18,000 plus songs would quite possibly roam from Carole King’s, It’s Too Late, to Michael Jackson’s, Rock With You, to Led Zeppelin’s, The Ocean, to Hiatus Kaiyote’s, Breathing Under Water to Pharoahe Monch’s, Still Standing, to the theme song to Where in the World is Carmen San Diego. If it touches me, I’ll listen.

The past two years have been the most fulfilling of my near 10 years at BRIC. While I get to spread my creative wings by directing and producing events like the annual Brooklyn Media Maker Weekend, or the B Scene screening series, my work as community producer liaison has stood out. Having the privilege to intercede in the collaboration of producers here and being able to witness the ever evolving results on our channels has been such a humbling experience. I am pleased and honored to serve you in that capacity.


Published on Wednesday, April 11, 2018

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