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What on Earth is Going on? is a podcast for the curious, where small talk is banned and tangents are prized. Strap yourself in for genuine dialogues with people who think deeply and are ready to tackle the big questions, such as broadcaster Terry O'Reilly, fantasy author Guy Gavriel Kay, and journalist Sally Armstrong.

Join Ben Charland to peel back the headlines and ask, what are the forces, people and ideas that shape the human story today? From the Mafia to the Beavertonwomen in politics to women in leadershiphistory to artificial intelligence, and entrepreneurship in the digital age to the art of wheelchair fencing, just what on Earth is going on?

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The show is also broadcast every week on the following radio stations:

The Podcast

What on Earth is Going on? is a weekly podcast where small talk is banned but tangents are welcome. Hosted by Ben Charland, the show centres around genuine dialogues with people who think deeply and are keen to consider the big questions. These conversations are playful, wide-ranging, sometimes provocative and always educational, and they cover any topic that shines light on the human story today.

Original music composed by Andrea Wettstein of Six Degrees Music & Sound in Calgary, Alberta.

The People

Ben Charland, Host

Ben is a writer, podcaster and creative consultant currently based in Whitehorse, Yukon. Ben's work is informed by the many hats he's worn over the years: playwright, theatre director, artistic director, tour guide, actor, political hack, traveler, teacher, government worker, blogger, speechwriter, manager and (yes) traffic coordinator for a paper shredding company. He's lived in four continents and has been lucky to visit over 50 countries, but the common thread for Ben is unrelenting curiosity. Ben has a BFA from the University of Calgary and an MA from the University of London (UK), and is engaged to the woman of his dreams, Shelaine.

Andrea Wettstein, Composer

Andrea is a composer at 6 Degrees Music & Sound.

Recent credits include Legend of a Warrior, directed by Corey Lee; Wolves Unleashed, directed by Andrew Simpson; and campaigns for Travel Alberta (Diamond Award at Berlin’s International Tourism Fair), Volkswagen, Energizer, Shaw and Chrysler. Together with Alec Harrison, Andrea scored the music for FlyOver Canada, a theme-park style ride launching this summer in Vancouver, which was recorded by the Vancouver Film Orchestra.

Andrea is always striving to hit an emotional chord with her music. Whether it’s a lilting melodic line, a recurring hook or quirky orchestration, Andrea writes with the goal of discovery – to reveal the honest emotional core of a character or scene. She strives to create an intimate embrace between each visual storyline and the music that supports it. Andrea’s classical background, and her Masters degree in composition, allows her a deep understanding of the orchestra, the singing voice, and the abilities of each instrument. She is an avid vocalist and songwriter finding the recording and production of her material as a creative force for her compositional work.

Danielle Kondruk, Communications & Social Media

Danielle Kondruk is a dedicated connector, conduit, brand champion, and non-profit ambassador. She started her career working for a prestigious Canadian business magazine and continued to fine-tune her corporate marketing skills with one of the country’s leading brands, Bell Canada. She has spent over ten years supporting non-profit organizations and entrepreneurs. An educational background in journalism explains her insatiable inquisitiveness, and she approaches all her projects with warmth and a characteristic sense of humour. She’s thrilled to be helping Ben bring these genuine and important discussions to a larger audience.