Making unheard voices heard

Fotos: Regula Bearth © ZHdK

Student portrait Elay Leuthold

Elay Leuthold wants his audiovisual stories to inspire and make people think. He is not afraid to address socio-political topics such as masculinity among men or the situation of Polands queer community.

FREDERIC POPPENHÄGER

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Frederic Poppenhager: Why did you decide to study Cast / Audiovisual Media?
Elay Leuthold: I would like to make unheard voices heard and thus inspire and enlighten others, as well as stimulate important discussions. Cast / Audiovisual Media is a state-of-the-art specialization that builds the necessary skills to tell such stories. The programme enables me to manage the whole process, from conception to distribution, on my own. Whether the outcome is a podcast, an animated video or a report is entirely up to me.

Which projects have you realized so far?
Among others, I have produced a guideline on the deplorable conditions of Poland’s LGBTQIA+ community. My interviews with members of this community offer not only insights into their circumstances but also information on how others can actively contribute to improving their situation. Another project was a series “On Being a Man,” a round table discussion on “masculinity” among men.

Why are you interested in men’s issues?
Well, because I’m a man myself. Especially as a gay man you sometimes think more about your masculinity and how you see and identify yourself. In my opinion, the term “man” is being completely redefined today.

What inspires you?
Sometimes a lot and sometimes nothing at all. Sometimes I find inspiration in Zurich, and sometimes I need to go further afield. But I mostly rely on inspiration finding me and not vice versa.

How do you apply your course skills to your everyday life?
I’ve always been creative. But ever since I started my studies, ideas and projects have been buzzing through my head non-stop. My time at ZHdK has definitely made me more creative and more motivated to try out new things.

What are your plans after you graduate?
I’m going to let things happen to me. At the moment, I’m enjoying everything and can imagine everything. It’s important for me to stay creative, to have a cool team around me and to produce whatever makes the world a little better.

Who or what deserves a renaissance?
Self-love and self-confidence! We should all have more confidence, in ourselves and in our visions and projects.

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