Life & Arts

In Black America Podcast
1:18 pm
Mon October 20, 2014

In Black America Podcast: 'Culture Worrier' Clarence Page

Clarence Page, Syndicated Columnist and Author

On this edition of In Black America, producer/host John L. Hanson Jr. speaks with Clarence Page, syndicated columnist with the Chicago Tribune and author of "Culture Worrier."

Twice a week, Pulitzer Prize-winning columnist Page addresses the social, economic and political issues affecting Americans. Writing with passion and style, Page delivers lively commentary on today's pressing issues, such as crime, education, housing, hunger and bigotry.

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Two Guys on Your Head
10:53 am
Sat October 18, 2014

Why Do We Freak Out About Existential Threats Like Ebola?

Credit flickr.com/cdcglobal

With the arrival of Ebola on U.S. soil came the wall-to-wall media coverage one might expect. 

But does saturated coverage of threats like the Ebola virus and Islamic State militants do more harm than good and inspire less-than-rational thinking? 

In this week's "Two Guys on Your Head," Dr. Art Markman and Dr. Bob Duke join KUT's Rebecca McInroy to talk about how the 24-hour news cycle causes readers, listeners and viewers to vicariously experience seemingly far-away threats, and how the availability of instant news causes some people to irrationally assess risks and threats. 

Arts Eclectic
7:00 am
Tue October 14, 2014

Pollyanna Commemorates 50 Years of the Civil Rights Act

Pollyanna Theater Company specializes in educational plays for young people. Performing in area schools and at the Rollins stage at the Long Center, they strive to produce works that will entertain kids while also teaching a lesson. 

This year, they've partnered with the LBJ Presidential Library to create an original play for kids to commorate the 50th anniversary of the landmark 1964 Civil Rights Act.

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Arts Eclectic
3:43 pm
Mon October 13, 2014

Attend the Cinema Touching Disability Film Festival

Now in its eleventh year, the Cinema Touching Disability Film Festival aims to give exposure to films that portray disability in an honest and respectful way. The festival includes a short film competition, which has grown over the years to now include entrants from all over the world. 

The centerpieces of the fest, though, are the feature films that are shown on Friday and Saturday night. This year's Friday night film is Musical Chairs, which tells the story of a dance instructor who, after losing the use of her legs in an accident, learns to continue dancing in her wheelchair. Friday night also features a live performance by mixed ability dance project Body Shift.

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In Black America Podcast
2:33 pm
Mon October 13, 2014

In Black America Podcast: Dr. Richard J. Reddick Reflects on Michael Brown’s Death

Dr. Richard J. Reddick, Ed.D.

On this edition of In Black America, producer/host John L. Hanson Jr. speaks with Dr. Richard J. Reddick, associate professor and coordinator at the University of Texas at Austin's College of Education, and a member of the 100 Black Men of Austin.

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Music
9:51 am
Thu October 9, 2014

Listen: John Aielli Sits Down With Tuvan Throat Singers

The members of the throat singing group Alash Ensemble: Ayan-ool Sam, Bady-Dorzhu Ondar and Ayan Shirizhik.
Matthew Yake

Our KUTX family is always working on interesting things. This week, in the short lull between the two weekends of Austin City Limits, host John Aielli did an interview we just had to share.

Aielli sat down with three throat singers from Tuva – a republic of about 300,000 people that's a subject of Russia, and is near Mongolia. The members of the group Alash Ensemble have trained in this style of song since their youth.

Though the group has gotten some broad attention, including collaborations with artists such as Béla Fleck, we'll bet you've never heard anything quite like this before.

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Life & Arts
6:57 am
Thu October 9, 2014

Homeless In Nashville, Huge In Sweden

"I was slapping myself in the face," singer Doug Seegers says of his recent success. "I kept saying, 'Am I dreaming? When am I going to wake up and go back to living under the bridge?' "
Gregg Roth Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Thu October 9, 2014 9:01 am

Country music fans were introduced to a new face at last month's Americana Music Awards in Nashville, when 62-year-old Doug Seegers opened the show with a song from his debut album, Going Down to the River.

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Texas Standard
3:28 pm
Tue October 7, 2014

James Ellroy's 'Perfidia' is a Noir Novel Without Good Guys

James Ellroy's latest novel, Perfidia, follows the Los Angeles Police Department's response to a brutal murder on the eve of Pearl Harbor.
Filipa Rodrigues/KUT

James Ellroy has a penchant for the persecuted.

His previous works including “L.A. Confidential,” “The Black Dahlia” and “The Big Nowhere” delve into forgotten times and seedy locales, where even the good guys have a bad streak.

His new noir novel “Perfidia,” like his other yarns, is a deep dive into Los Angeles during World War II, just after Pearl Harbor.

Ellroy spoke with Texas Standard’s Emily Donahue ahead of his appearance at his appearance at the Texas Book Festival later this month.

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Get Involved
9:29 am
Mon October 6, 2014

Get Involved Spotlight: Prevent Child Abuse Texas

 From Prevent Child Abuse Texas, this month's Get Involved spotlight non-profit:

Mission: Prevention of Child Abuse & Neglect In All Its Forms For All Children Throughout Texas.

Vision: One in which every child is free from abuse and neglect, safely nurtured by a loving family.  This vision is one in which every child lives in a community committed to preventing child abuse; to providing supports for parents, particularly new parents, which enable them to be effective parents; and to promoting the participation of all sectors of the community in a variety of efforts to prevent child abuse.

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In Black America Podcast
9:02 am
Mon October 6, 2014

In Black America Podcast: ‘No Love, No Charity’ with Paul Lamar Hunter

Paul Lamar Hunter

On this edition of In Black America, producer/host John L. Hanson Jr. speaks with Paul Lamar Hunter, author of ‘No Love, No Charity: the Success of the 19th Child.’

Though many would consider Hunter to be an unlikely candidate to become successful, his thrilling autobiographical account describes how he made it, despite overwhelming odds.

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Arts Eclectic
1:09 pm
Fri October 3, 2014

Consider 'A Mathematical Theory of Communication'

Casey Reas, detail of 'A Mathematical Theory of Communication'

UT's Landmarks public art program is dedicated to getting as much art as possible into public places on the University of Texas campus and around Austin. Over the past six years, they've put art in buildings and in outdoor spaces, with the goal of exposing people to art during their day-to-day lives. They're basically turning the UT campus into one big, free art museum.

Their latest installation will be unveiled inside the Gates Dell Computer Science Complex. Created by digital artist Casey Reas, A Mathematical Theory of Communication is a large mural that covers two large walls in the building's atrium. Reas met with professors and students in the Computer Sciences department to gather inspiration for the piece. 

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Arts Eclectic
10:54 am
Thu October 2, 2014

Nettie Reynolds Celebrates the Big 5-0

Writer and storyteller Nettie Reynolds has been performing in public for the past twenty years or so, and this weekend she'll be presenting her second full-length sort-of-one-woman show.

Though Reynolds is doing most of the heavy lifting, it's not exactly a solo show, as she'll be joined by a few of her friends -- Walter Daniels and Kacy Crowley will each sing a song, and Cate Berry and Bernadette Noll will each tell a story. 

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Life & Arts
8:39 am
Tue September 30, 2014

Lena Dunham's New Book, and the Finalists for the First Ever Kirkus Prize Announced

Kirkus Editor, Clay Smith
Photo by Michael Thad Carter

Many fans of the HBO series Girls are eagerly awaiting today's doorstep delivery of producer, creator, and lead actress Lena Dunham's first book. In Not That Kind of Girl: A Young Woman Tells You What She's "Learned," Dunham pens a series of essays that is part memoir, part advice book. 

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In Black America Podcast
8:47 am
Mon September 29, 2014

In Black America Podcast: Austin Business Leader Natalie Madeira Cofield

Natalie Cofield, President and CEO, Greater Austin Black Chamber of Commerce

On this edition of In Black America, producer/host John L. Hanson Jr. speaks with Natalie Madeira Cofield, President & CEO of the Greater Austin Black Chamber of Commerce, located in Austin, TX; Founding President of the Austin Black Technology Council and Founder of Walker’s Legacy a national women in business collective.

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Arts Eclectic
8:22 am
Sat September 27, 2014

See 'Still Now' at City Theatre

Shrewd Productions specializes in new works, particularly those that explore women's voices. That makes 'Still Now' a good fit -- the drama, by playwright Katie Bender, is making its world premiere with this production, and was recently included on the Kilroy List, a survey of excellent new plays by female playwrights.

'Still Now' is centered around Annie, a dancer who left America after the events of 9/11 to study Butoh in japan. Years later, she is diagnosed with stage four cancer and returns to Butoh as a way to cope with the ongoing destruction of her own body.

The play is about Annie coming to terms with the end of her own life, and also about the effect it has on those around her. As actor Joseph Gorlock says, "It's about loss, but it's about triumph and love throughout, as well."

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Arts Eclectic
9:55 am
Wed September 24, 2014

'SoundSpace' Explores the Construction of Sound

Twice a year, the Blanton Museum of Art hosts the SoundSpace series, in which an eclectic mix of musicians and dancers perform among the artwork on display. The next installment of the series, titled Sound Construction, takes place this Sunday afternoon.

Organized by SoundSpace artistic director Steven Parker, Sound Construction will explore timbre by focusing on newly constructed instruments and out of the ordinary musical techniques. The centerpiece of Sunday's installment will be the premiere of Symmetrographia, a new work by Austin composer Travis Weller. In addition to some traditional stringed instruments, Symmetrographia features several instruments invented and built by Weller himself.

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Arts Eclectic
10:30 am
Tue September 23, 2014

Kneel Before 'The Metal Queen'

Loaded Gun Theory's new original work The Metal Queen: Kneel Before Her Dark Majesty was inspired, in an indirect way, by a play staged last year by a different Austin theater company.  After seeing and loving Capital T Theatre's production of the violent dark comedy The Lieutenant of Inishmore, which featured a mostly-male cast, the creative minds of Loaded Gun Theory wondered "why women couldn't also have a lot of fun wielding guns...and making bad decisions," in the words of co-writer Julie Winston-Thomas.

That thought was the genesis for The Metal Queen, in which women wield guns and make increasingly poor decisions. The dark comedy centers around middle aged mothers Gretchen and Diane; after Gretchen's husband commits suicide, she decides to avoid despair by focusing her energies on a plan to get Diane out of debt by robbing every house in their neighborhood.

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In Black America Podcast
10:21 am
Mon September 22, 2014

In Black America Podcast: 'The Hippest Trip In America' with Nelson George

The late Don Cornelius was the creator of "Soul Train" and hosted the show for 35 years, from 1971 to 2006.

On this edition of In Black America, producer/host John L. Hanson Jr. speaks with Nelson George, acclaimed filmmaker, TV producer, journalist, and author of ‘The Hippest Trip in America: Soul Train and the Evolution of Culture and Style.’

When it debuted on October 2, 1971, seven years after the Civil Rights Act, Soul Train boldly went where no variety show had gone before, showcasing the cultural preferences of young African-Americans and the sounds that defined their lives: R&B, funk, jazz, disco, and gospel music.

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Life & Arts
7:15 am
Mon September 22, 2014

Mafia Wife, Getaway Driver, Stuntwoman: From The Underworld To Hollywood

In order to secure a career as a stuntwoman, Georgia Durante would show up on Hollywood film sets asking for work. At first, directors ignored her. Then they saw her drive.
Courtesy of Georgia Durante

Originally published on Mon September 22, 2014 10:20 am

As part of a series called "My Big Break," All Things Considered is collecting stories of triumph, big and small. These are the moments when everything seems to click, and people leap forward into their careers.

Georgia Durante's life has taken some unexpected turns. She was a model for Kodak — a "Kodak Girl" — who went on to do TV and commercial work as a stunt driver. In the '90s, she appeared in Chevrolet ads and was the stunt double for Cindy Crawford in a Pepsi commercial.

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Life & Arts
12:12 pm
Fri September 19, 2014

Slideshow: The Posters, Vinyl and Toys at The First-Ever MondoCon

Mondo's vinyl for “Music for 2001: A Space Odyssey.” Artwork and package design by Jay Shaw. Featured on the “2001: A Lost Score” panel at MondoCon.
Mondo

If you’ve heard of Austin-based Alamo Drafthouse offshoot Mondo – you probably know them for their film posters. They’re artistic alternatives to the stuff pushed out by the film industry.

But Mondo has become much more than that as of late – also producing throwbacks with a focus on design including VHS tapes and vinyl records. Now, they’ve starting making toy collectibles.

They’re showing off all of this and inviting people to learn more about what they do in the first ever MondoCon. It’s this weekend in Austin.

Mondo CEO Justin Ishmael sat down with KUT's Laura Rice to talk about it.

On What's Special About Mondo's Posters:

"I think, first, the place where they're coming from is completely different from what's coming out of Hollywood. A lot of times, ours are not promoting a film that's actively trying to make money so I think there's a lot of liberties that we can take with them that studios can't... Some of our posters rely on having seen the movie to evoke an emotion."

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