Valencia kid launches podcast during quarantine

Valencia resident Jude Levy, 12, working on his podcast, "School's Out with Jude Levy." Courtesy
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Like most kids his age, 12-year-old Jude Levy found himself extremely bored when faced with the stay-at-home order due to the coronavirus.

It didn’t take the Valencia resident long to think up a solution, though, quickly deciding to create his own podcast, titled “School’s Out with Jude Levy.” 

“We just couldn’t find anything to do, and this seemed really fun and something we would love to do,” Levy said. 

Tapping into his dad’s experience as an audio producer, Levy enlisted his help in creating the weekly podcast.

“We are all at home together, and Jude wanted to do a podcast. He was like, ‘Dad, Dad, can you help me?’ So, it’s a father-son project, and we’re having fun doing it,” said Levy’s father, Jack. 

Soon, Levy would begin interviewing compelling guests, ranging from Newhall School District Superintendent Jeff Pelzel, who Levy referred to as “the principal of all the principals,” rapper and producer Def Jef, and Dr. Peter Montesano, chatting about COVID-19.

“We basically talk about how it is to be a kid in the quarantine, and their professions,” Levy said, adding that he’s learned a lot in the process. “It’s so fun, and (Def) Jef told me some stories from his career and childhood he has not told before.” 

While Levy’s dad has been helping him with the sound and editing, it’s been Levy’s job to come up with all the questions and decide who he wants to interview. 

Together, it takes them about two days and a couple late nights to put together each segment. 

“Sound has always been what I do, so when he said he wanted to do a podcast, it was pretty easy to look at the challenge and put it together,” Jack added. “The truth is, he’s teaching me as well, because I’m sort of old guard and he’s very social media savvy, so I think he’s educating me while I’m educating him.”

For Levy, who’s always been an outspoken kid, interviewing his guests has almost come naturally. So far, his favorites have been film and TV director Joshua Butler and L.A. School Police Department Officer Rudy Perez.

“Something about them just felt better than the others, like I didn’t have a hard time reading the questions or I was less nervous,” Levy said.

Some of his friends have been watching the show, one of whom even sent Levy a reaction video, and each week, Levy puts out a new episode, which is then sent out to his sixth-grade class at Peachland Elementary. 

Right now, they’ve been working to expand each show to include more bits and segments, such as student polls and games, to get the students’ perspective and engage his audience. 

During the recent protests, Levy went out into the action for live interviews.

“It was important to be there,” he said. “Kids should know what’s going on.” 

To listen to the podcast, visit bit.ly/SchoolsOutWithJude. To contact Jude Levy for suggestions, comments or to be a guest, email [email protected].

Valencia resident Jude Levy, 12, attends protests in Santa Clarita for a special segment of his podcast, “School’s Out with Jude Levy.” Courtesy

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