Changes with Annie Macmanus

DJ Annie Macmanus chats to artists, writers, musicians and a host of fascinating people about CHANGE. Each guest talks through the biggest changes they have overcome in childhood and adulthood, and how they effect change. The podcast explores how chang...

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  • 10. Aderonke Apata on leaving Nigeria to be a free gay woman

    Imagine being forced to leave your country for being gay or face death. This Refugee Week, we welcome Aderonke Apata, a Nigerian refugee who had to leave Nigeria under threat of persecution for being in love with a woman. When she reached the UK, she embarked on a 13-year battle through the UK immigration system including periods of homelessness, detention and near deportation. She was also accused of lying about her sexuality. Her lover in Nigeria was sadly killed. Today, Aderonke has trained to be a barrister and is an expert on immigration law helping others who are going through a similar experience to hers. She founded the African Rainbow Family in Manchester, highlighting the importance of providing support and safe spaces for LGBTQ+ refugees and asylum seekers. In this deeply moving and enlightening conversation Aderonke discusses her experience, the complexities of sexuality and asylum claims, the astounding and brave changes she has made in her life to live as a proud lesbian and her desire to make change for others. Aderonke’s story is a testament to the power of hope and the resilience of the human spirit.Refugee Week is a UK-wide festival celebrating the contributions, creativity, and resilience of refugees and people seeking sanctuary. Taking place every year in the week around World Refugee Day on 20th June, Refugee Week encourages understanding and solidarity with refugees and asylum seekers through arts, culture, and educational events. This Refugee Week, let’s stand in solidarity with those who have faced unimaginable hardships in their pursuit of safety and acceptance.Warning this episode references homophobia, sexual abuse, violence and murderFor more information visit:www.refugeeweek.orgwww.africanrainbowfamily.orgGET IN TOUCHContact us at with your emails and voice notes.Changes is a deaf friendly podcast, transcripts can be accessed here: Note: The transcript is automatically generated in case you come across any typos or misquotes during your reading. Enjoy the episode.

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  • 9. Vernon Kay on navigating show business, late puberty and keeping family grounded

    Vernon Kay is one of the most recognised people on British TV and radio known for his infectious smile and warm Bolton accent. He first made his mark on Channel 4’s T4 in the early 2000s and has since hosted popular shows like All Star Family Fortunes and Comic Relief. In 2020 he appeared on I’m A Celebrity… Get Me Out of Here! He has been presenting shows on BBC radio since 2004, most recently taking over the coveted mid-morning radio show on BBC Radio 2, following in the footsteps of Ken Bruce. Last year, Vernon raised over £6,000,000 for Children In Need, by running an Ultra-Ultramarathon from Leicester to Bolton.Vernon has been married to Strictly Come Dancing host Tess Daly for 20 years. Together, they have two daughters and are one of the UK's most beloved showbiz couples.In this funny and candid conversation, Vernon discusses joining BBC Radio 2 and the connection he built with listeners during his Children In Need challenge, navigating his career and how showbusiness has changed since he started, his youth, his enduring marriage to Strictly Come Dancing host Tess Daly and the joys and challenges of balancing family life with a demanding career. He also talks about his work encouraging men to talk openly about their feelings and his evolving perceptions of happiness and success.GET IN TOUCHContact us at with your emails and voice notes.Changes is a deaf friendly podcast, transcripts can be accessed here: Note: The transcript is automatically generated in case you come across any typos or misquotes during your reading. Enjoy the episode.
  • 8. Miranda July on rethinking everything - marriage, sex and hormones

    Miranda July’s staggering new novel ‘All Fours’ might just completely change the way you think about your life. Miranda is not one for sticking to the rules. An LA based artist, writer and award-winning filmmaker, she has been creating unapologetic, boundary pushing work since her involvement in the Riot Grrrl feminist movement of the 1990s, where she gained recognition for her zines and performance art. She has gone on to create across many mediums, including her breakthrough 2005 feature film debut, "Me and You and Everyone We Know," which she wrote, directed, and starred in. The film garnered critical acclaim, winning the prestigious Camera d'Or at the Cannes Film Festival. You might have noticed Miranda July’s name popping up all over the place since the release of ‘All Fours’ last month, and there is a reason why. This book is astonishing. It takes everything you think you know about what it means to be a woman in mid life, a mother, a lover, a friend, and makes you rethink it all. The story follows a woman in her forties who embarks on a physical and metaphorical journey of rediscovering herself. In this episode Annie and Miranda unpick some of the brilliant themes from the book including the institution of marriage, motherhood, perimenopause, hormones, sex, as well as real experiences from post menopausal women (positives and negatives). They also discuss Miranda’s upbringing, her personal changes and how her life bleeds into her work. Listen to this episode and then go and buy this book immediately. Warning: this episode discusses suicide, please be mindful if this could impact you.Buy a copy of 'All Fours' and find out more about Miranda and her work here: IN TOUCHContact us at with your emails and voice notes.Changes is a deaf friendly podcast, transcripts can be accessed here:
  • 7. Ahmed Alnaouq on the war in Palestine, family and the power of stories

    On 22nd October 2023, Ahmed Alnaouq woke up to the unthinkable news that 21 members of his family had been killed by an Israeli airstrike in Gaza.Ahmed Alnaouq is a Palestinian journalist from Gaza and the co-founder of We Are Not Numbers - a non profit organisation that specialises in sharing Palestinian stories. In this episode, Ahmed shares his story. He explains how the war in Palestine didn’t begin last year, but has been ongoing throughout his entire life. Ahmed talks about family members who have been killed, how this horrific experience has changed him and his outlook, the importance of sharing stories to incite change, what the end of this war could look like and what he thinks people in the West can do.Changes is fundamentally about the power of sharing stories. It is through stories that we find hope, connection and spread empathy and that is what we hope today’s episode will do.Warning: This episode contains explicit and upsetting content about the war in Gaza that some listeners may find distressing.Find out more about We Are Not Numbers and read the stories here: IN TOUCHContact us at with your emails and voice notes.Changes is a deaf friendly podcast, transcripts can be accessed here:
  • 6. Sara Pascoe on self worth, detachment and reflecting on separated parents

    Sara Pascoe has a magic ability to take life’s absurdities and turn them into comedy gold, but how does she approach change? Sara’s quick, intelligent wit has seen her competing on many of the UK’s most popular comedy panel shows such as QI and Taskmaster and she also hosts ‘The Great British Sewing Bee’. Not only is she one of the country’s foremost comedians, Sara is a bestselling author too, having written three books - ‘Animal’, ‘Sex Money Power’ and her debut novel ‘Weirdo’, which is out on paperback now. She’s also a book fan and co-hosts the podcast ‘Sara and Cariad’s Weirdos Book Club’ with her friend, and previous guest on Changes, Cariad Lloyd.In this refreshing and light hearted conversation, Sara opens about her untraditional upbringing, her transition to vegetarianism at a young age and her changing relationship with her parents after her Dad left when she was seven. Reflecting on her latest novel, "Weirdo,", Sara also discusses her evolving relationship with her own confidence, detachment from show business as a new mum and her self-worth as a comedian.Buy 'Weirdo' here: to Cariad Lloyd's Changes episode here: IN TOUCHContact us at with your emails and voice notes.Changes is a deaf friendly podcast, transcripts can be accessed here:
  • 5. George the Poet on being a Black radical, music and the war on Blackness

    George Mpanga, aka George the Poet, is a voice for change but, is it enough to just be a successful Black man in the war on Blackness? From his humble beginnings in North London with Ugandan parents, to graduating from Cambridge University as well as visiting Uganda, George knows a thing or two about the big changes that can shape your life’s direction.George is best known for his work as a spoken word artist, rapper and podcaster with the multi award-winning podcast ‘Have You Heard George’s Podcast?’. He is also a PHD researcher, recently became a father and is now an author with his recent memoir "Track Record: Me, Music, and the War on Blackness." It is essential reading. In this deeply personal and engrossing conversation, Annie and George unpack the complexities of his identity as a Black entertainer, his shift from Black liberal to Black radical and why, for him, radical thinking is essential to bring about systemic change, the power of honesty, their shared experience of imperialism (Annie of course from an Irish perspective), falling in love, and Black music and the restrictions he felt on his own creativity in the industry. From challenging the status quo of capitalism to advocating for equality and justice, George leaves us with a message of hope and empowerment, oh, and his favourite Nas lyric.Find out more about George here: George's book 'Track Record: Me, Music, and the War on Blackness' here: IN TOUCHContact us at with your emails and voice notes.Changes is a deaf friendly podcast, transcripts can be accessed here:
  • 4. Afua Hirsch on different cultural views on bodies - body hair, puberty, fertility and aging

    Rounding off this miniseries on Bodies, the incredible journalist, broadcaster and bestselling author Afua Hirsch unpacks Eurocentric beauty standards and discusses unlearning some of the myths around women’s bodies. Why do western cultures think body hair is bad? How do non western cultures treat puberty and aging? Can we change how we view our bodies from our ancestors? Certainly, what we think we know about women's bodies is very narrow.Afua Hirsch is at the forefront of discussions about race, history, and culture in Britain today. Her book ‘Brit(ish)’ was an award winning Sunday Times bestseller and delves into the uncomfortable truth about race and identity in Britain today. Her latest book is called ‘Decolonising My Body: A Radical Exploration Of Rituals And Beauty’.  It was a 2023 political book of the year for Waterstones, described as 'ground-breaking' by Bernardine Evaristo and makes her perfect for discussing Bodies and change. Originally training as a human rights barrister, since being a journalist, Afua has presented documentaries for the BBC, been a regular contributor to Sky News debate show The Pledge and current affairs programmes including Channel 4 News, Newsnight, Question Time, and CNN. She has also written for multiple prestigious publications including British Vogue where she interviewed Rihanna! In this incredibly enlightening episode, as well as covering different cultural views on bodies, Afua and Annie discuss Afua’s view of her body as a young black girl and how that has changed, a life altering moment with Oprah and why she personally wanted to unlearn and then relearn everything when it came to understanding her body.Find out more about Afua Hirsch and order her book ‘Decolonising My Body’ books and people mentioned in this episode:Maisie Hill - Period Powerwww.maisiehill.comLaurence IN TOUCHContact us at with your emails and voice notes.Changes is a deaf friendly podcast, transcripts can be accessed here: