October 15, 2019
In this episode, we examine the art of comedy with two writers who have spent their lives finding the funny in the meaningful and the meaningful in the funny - Frank Santopadre and Alan Zweibel.
October 8, 2019
This special episode dives deep into the most troubling issues facing career women in science and offers real insight about what works, what doesn’t, and what we can all do to secure a more equal and fair future.
October 1, 2019
Alan Alda had the opportunity to speak with someone who is at the forefront of combining improv and music -- his guest this week is legendary jazz guitarist Pat Metheny.
September 24, 2019
In this episode Alan Alda speaks with Dr. Sapolsky about his experiences with animals (both human and baboon) and finds out more about the fascinating links between our behavior, our decision-making process, and how we communicate with each other about what we understand and what we don't.
September 17, 2019
How can scientist’s better bring their complex and deep understanding of nature up to the surface - for the rest of us to enjoy?
September 10, 2019
In this interview, Alan Alda had just heard his friend Yo-Yo Ma play all six of the Bach Cello Suites in a concert, so the two sat down to explore how music can be used to tell a story and the bring about action.
September 3, 2019
It turns out, being called a badass can be a really good compliment, and this led Alan Alda and Laura Brown, Editor in Chief of InStyle Magazine, to an interesting discussion of what style is, what it communicates, and how it spreads.
August 27, 2019
Alan Alda and Melinda Gates discuss her new book, "The Moment of Lift: How Empowering Women Changes the World," and what happens when the data suggests one course of action, but the reality on the ground suggests another.
August 20, 2019
Season 5 of Clear+Vivid® with Alan Alda starts on Tuesday, August 27th - listen now to the official trailer to meet some of Alan’s next guests — including Melinda Gates, Yo-Yo Ma, Robert Sapolsky, and many more!
August 13, 2019
Katie Couric and Alan Alda discuss how to engage a national audience and bring attention to a cause.
August 6, 2019
In this episode, Alan Alda speaks with Dr. Katharine Hayhoe, a climate researcher, about the consequences of the decisions we make today on the livability of the planet in the future.
July 30, 2019
Alan Alda speaks with Henry Schleiff, a broadcasting legend, about his thoughtful and funny take on communication and how to make a positive impact through the medium of television.
July 23, 2019
Even though some experts on this show have talked about digital technology as a threat to our privacy, to our ability to relate, and in some cases even to our health, Dr. Topol tells us how machines can actually make a visit to the doctor more personal.
July 16, 2019
In this episode, Frans de Waal shares with Alan Alda his insights about animal emotions and what they tell us about ourselves.
July 9, 2019
Alan Alda talks with Adam about his work in bringing together the world of civilians and the world of the military through powerful, shared experiences in the arts.
July 2, 2019
Hope Jahren, author of the bestselling book, Lab Girl, has been fascinated by plants her whole life and in this episode she speaks with Alan Alda about whether or not we can experience empathy with plants and vice-versa.
June 25, 2019
In this episode, Alan Alda talks with Chris Volpe, who heads the non-profit Science Counts, about how to make science more relatable and understandable.
June 18, 2019
In this episode, Alan sits down with Earlonne Woods and Nigel Poor to talk about how stories are made and, as importantly, how they get out.
June 11, 2019
In this endearing episode Alan Alda and Carol Burnett talk about her life of comedy, characters, and connection.
June 4, 2019
Empathy is a powerful tool and, when mixed with politics, it can be used to help the greater good, but it also has a dark side, and in this episode Alan Alda speaks with former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright about the uses and abuses of empathy and power.
May 28, 2019
Season 4 of Clear+Vivid® with Alan Alda starts on Tuesday, June 4th - listen to the official trailer to meet some of Alan’s next guests — including Madeleine Albright, Carol Burnett, Adam Driver, Katie Couric, and many more!
May 21, 2019
This episode explores some of Alan's favorite guest insights about we can overcome the "Us" vs. "Them" mentality of tribalism.
May 14, 2019
Regular listeners to Clear+Vivid know that we have a thing for empathy, as do many of our guests, but exactly what empathy is isn’t always obvious – nor is it obvious that it’s always a good thing.
May 7, 2019
We love hearing from our listeners -- through social media and email, you've been sending us your own answers to "Alan's 7 Questions" and we've been having a great time reading through all your witty, smart, and often poignant responses -- so, in this episode, we're highlighting all of our favorites!
April 30, 2019
Our guests have hilarious, thoughtful, and heartwarming answers to Alan Alda's "7 Questions" -- in this episode, we bring you all of our favorites.
April 23, 2019
Gilbert Gottfried, along with co-host and fellow pop culture fanatic Frank Santopadre, sit down with Alan for a candid and spirited conversation, as Alan takes an affectionate look back at his life in theatre, television, and film.
April 16, 2019
David Flink was diagnosed with dyslexia and ADHD in grade school, but that didn't stop him -- he learned to think differently about learning and now he teaches others.
April 9, 2019
In this episode, Pardis Sabeti and Alan Alda talk about her scientific work, as they discover that the best way to tackle any challenge is with empathy, humanity, and a whole lot of fun.
April 2, 2019
Steven Johnson has written a dozen books about how we come up with ideas and how we make decisions -- in this playful episode, Steven and Alan Alda talk about the transformative nature of ideas and what sort of environments best give rise to creativity.
March 26, 2019
Alan and Steven Strogatz continue their conversation with this special bonus feature about a math problem that Alan doesn't quite understand - yet.
March 19, 2019
Alan Alda asks Jonathan Haidt about his research into the moral foundation of our politics --- they delve into understanding what makes us happy and how we can overcome our natural tendency toward self-righteousness, in order to learn from those whose morality (and politics) differs from our own.
March 12, 2019
Alan Alda talks with famed researcher and author, Michael Tomasello, about something we don’t think about much, but that may be at the very heart of relating and communicating: shared attention.
March 5, 2019
Sarah Vowell is a true American satirist who writes about history from all sorts of strange and interesting angles -- in this conversation, Alan Alda and Sarah explore the intricacies of writing for all sorts of media and how to think, with clarity, about how to write for each audience.
February 26, 2019
MIT professor, author, and clinical psychologist, Sherry Turkle, speaks with Alan Alda about how our constant connectedness isn't always the best thing for us -- and what we can do to disconnect from our technology to reconnect with our humanity.
February 19, 2019
In this conversation with Alan Alda, Stephen talks about his latest books about Greek mythology and how these ancient myths help us know and understand our modern selves.
February 12, 2019
In this special Valentine's Day special, Dr. Ruth and Alan Alda talk about sex and how to communicate with your partner below and above the covers!
February 5, 2019
M*A*S*H is back for a one-time, exclusive episode with all your familiar friends -- join Alan Alda, Loretta Swit, Jamie Farr, Mike Farrell, and Gary Burghoff for an intimate and candid conversation about their personal experiences of being part of one of the most beloved TV shows of all time; and the lessons they learned about how to connect, communicate, and to relate with one another in the process
January 29, 2019
In this delightful episode, Alan Alda talks with Sheila Nevins about her life, how she feels about aging, the #MeToo movement, sex, divorce, documentaries, storytelling, and just about everything else!
January 27, 2019
The M*A*S*H episode you've all been waiting for is almost here! Coming February 5th to Apple Podcasts, Stitcher, Google Play, or wherever you like to listen to podcasts. Subscribe and listen for free at
January 22, 2019
Alan Alda speaks with Senator Bill Bradley about his amazing life and career -- from Gold medal Olympian to the United States Senate.
January 15, 2019
In this emotionally riveting episode, Alan Alda speaks with former Neo-Nazi leader, Christian Picciolini, about his descent into the Neo-Nazi movement - and how he got out.
January 8, 2019
Jaron Lanier speaks with Alan Alda about the many reasons why you should delete your social media accounts right now.
December 17, 2018
Rachael Ray and Alan Alda sit down at the kitchen table for a conversation about connecting and relating over food, just in time for the holidays!
December 11, 2018
W. Kamau Bell, the host of CNN's "United Shades of America,”speaks with Alan Alda about how to communicate with racists.
December 8, 2018
In this last episode in our 3-part series on medical communication we speak with Dr. Susmita Pati and Dr. Laura Lindenfeld who are pioneering the medical communication program at the Alan Alda Center for Communicating Science at Stony Brook University.
December 6, 2018
Alan Alda speaks with Dr. Karl VanDevender who has been practicing medicine for 40 years and, in that time, Dr. VanDevender has learned the secrets to empathic communication in medicine and how to build the best relationships with his patients.
December 4, 2018
Dr. Helen Riess and Alan Alda discuss empathy and the science of emotion in this 3-part series on medical communication.
November 27, 2018
Marc Maron, stand-up legend and host of the WTF Podcast, speaks with Alan Alda about what podcasting has taught him about relating and how to be a better communicator.
November 20, 2018
Neil deGrasse Tyson and Alan Alda talk about everything from the science of football to the newly proposed Space Force
November 13, 2018
In this exclusive interview, Alan Alda talks with Michael J. Fox about their shared experiences living with Parkinson's Disease. This episode is sponsored by Undeniably Dairy. To hear more stories about dairy farmers, visit
November 6, 2018
Exclusive behind the scenes conversation with Alan Alda and the production team for Clear+Vivid.
October 30, 2018
While Alan Alda is on vacation, he's invited his friend Katie Couric to take over the pod with some of her favorite episodes!
October 23, 2018
Alan is on vacation (literally). So, he asked his friend Katie Couric if she'd lend him a couple of episodes of her podcast.
October 2, 2018
Season 2 of Clear+Vivid with Alan Alda starts on November 13th! Listen to the official trailer to meet some of Alan's next guests -- you're not going to want to miss the spectacular bonus episodes in the works! New episodes are available every Tuesday. Subscribe and listen for free on Apple Podcasts, Stitcher, or wherever you like to enjoy podcasts. For more details and to subscribe to Alan's newsletter, please visit These episodes are made possible thanks to the generous support of our advertisers. All the profits from this podcast go to the Alan Alda Center for Communicating Science at Stony Brook University to further support research in science communication and research.
October 2, 2018
Chris Voss is a former FBI hostage negotiator who has used communication to save lives. Alan Alda interviews Chris about his experiences and they discuss intense situations where empathy has been successfully used as a tool to guard against the unthinkable. Alan also has a few tricks up his own sleeve as he lures Chris into a role play situation to see how well he does under pressure.
September 25, 2018
How do you talk to a member of a deadly gang? How do you help someone leave that life, and why did they join it in the first place? The answers are surprising. And they throw light on how to communicate with anyone. In this episode of Clear+Vivid Alan Alda has a lively and eye-opening conversation with Father Greg Boyle who tells how his Homeboys Industries in Los Angeles has been a lifeline to thousands of young people escaping the deadly culture of gang life. And how he answers violence with tenderness.
September 18, 2018
Isabella Rossellini is a legendary actress, iconic model, filmmaker, writer, and now - if that's not enough - she's working on her master's degree in Animal Behavior. In this wildly fun conversation, Alan Alda talks with Isabella about how how animals communicate with one another and with us. And how Isabella communicates with us about the sometimes bizarre sex lives of animals — in her popular video series called "Green Porno."
September 11, 2018
Is a work of art complete if no one experiences it? Nobel Prize winner Eric Kandel talks with Alan Alda about the vital role of the audience when we communicate through art and story And his prize-winning discoveries on memory come alive in his own memorable stories.
September 4, 2018
Cheryl Strayed, one of the most exciting and uplifting authors of our time, is funny, down to earth, complex, and the perfect person to offer Alan Alda solid advice about how to give good advice. She's the author of Tiny Beautiful Things and the co-host of the New York Times/WBUR podcast Dear Sugars, which originated with her popular Dear Sugar advice column, and she's the co-author of The Sweet Spot advice column in the New York Times Thursday Styles section.  Her novel, Wild, about her life in the wake of tragic events, is a well-known bestseller and a feature movie.
August 28, 2018
George Mitchell helped end decades of lethal violence in Northern Ireland with the historic accord known as the Good Friday Agreement. In this episode Alan Alda talks with Sen. Mitchell about how he achieved that agreement through effective communication, and an understanding of human nature. He describes the essential elements of effective communication that brought together the governments of Ireland and the United Kingdom as well as the political parties of Northern Ireland, bringing an end to a seemingly endless cycle of violence. Sen. Mitchell served as a Special Advisor to President Clinton on Ireland, and acted as the Independent Chairman of the Northern Ireland Peace Talks.
August 21, 2018
Two icons of improv and comedy together on the same podcast. Alan Alda and Tina Fey - do we need to say more? This episode was originally recorded live on stage. Tina also joined Alan in studio to answer 7 questions about herself. Her answers are profound and funny and show why she's one of the great comedians of all time.
August 14, 2018
Ann Patchett is a best selling author with an uncanny ability to write amazing characters, who capture our imagination and hold us in their emotional grip. Alan Alda talks with Ann about her approach to writing and how empathy influences both her stories and her personal life.
August 7, 2018
Author and activist Letty Cottin Pogrebin reflects on the modern state of feminism and the #MeToo movement – and how she’s brought people together in the Middle East through experiences that change their understanding of one another. (In Part 2 of these conversations on “Bringing Enemies Together” Senator George Mitchell discusses bringing peace to Northern Ireland.)
July 31, 2018
Yale Professor Paul Bloom doesn't think empathy is such a good thing. He's even written a book about it called, The Case Against Empathy. However, he does have an interesting theory about what he calls rational compassion. Paul and Alan Alda discuss their views for and against empathy and find out that they have more in common than they thought.
July 24, 2018
Surprisingly, Renée Fleming has been using her iconic voice to help scientists discover how music heals us. Alan talks with Renée about their mutual interest in science, her new starring role in Carousel, and what it's like to really be present as a performer.
July 17, 2018
Every day, 10 million Americans watch Judge Judy on TV. Her style is direct and to the point. Her job is to know how to quickly separate fact from fiction. She talks with Alan about justice and what it's like for a judge to have such an impact on the lives of others.
July 13, 2018
Alan talks with Kate about the awkward, funny, and often misguided, ways people approach the subject when they know someone is seriously ill. New York Times Bestselling author and Duke University divinity professor, Kate Bowler tells Alan how stage 4 cancer led her to write a humorous, and graceful book about communicating with someone who’s received the worst possible news.
July 9, 2018
In this delightful and spirited conversation, Alan Alda talks with his good friend the world-renowned violinist, Itzhak Perlman. They explore the power of spontaneity in both music and acting, and what happens when a musician talks to the audience.
July 9, 2018
Alan Alda talks with comedian Sarah Silverman about how she befriended someone who was hateful toward her on Twitter, and how her new series on Hulu challenges her to connect with people that she doesn't agree with. Her question to us is “Can Americans put down their "porcupine needles" and really listen to one another again?”
May 23, 2018
Clear and Vivid is a series of Alan Alda’s spirited conversations with people who know how hard it is, and yet how good it feels, to really connect with other people – whether it’s one person, an audience or a whole country. You'll know many of the people in these conversations – they are luminaries in our culture. Some you may not know. But what links them all is their powerful ability to relate and communicate. With his unique blend of humor and insight, Alda explores the ways we can connect better with one another in every area of our lives. Something we need now more than ever. Subscribe on Apple Podcasts, Google Play, and Stitcher. Visit for more details. Follow Alan on Twitter @alanalda and find us on Instagram and Facebook @clearandvivid. Launches July 10th!
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