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'Fall Guys' Is Candy-Colored Party Battle Fun

2 hours ago

When you think of the battle royale genre in video games, you'll probably think of Fortnite. In Fortnite, a group of 100 players parachute from a plane, land on an island, and the last person standing wins.

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Three associates of fallen R&B star R. Kelly were arrested and charged Tuesday by New York federal authorities. The three are accused of attempting to harass, threaten, intimidate and bribe several of Kelly's alleged victims of sexual abuse.

The men are 31-year-old Richard Arline Jr. a self-described friend of the singer; Donnell Russell, 45, a self-described "manager, advisor and friend" of Kelly; and Michael Williams, 37, who prosecutors say is a relative of one of Kelly's former publicists.

Martin Luther King Jr. and Malcolm X are frequently seen as opposing forces in the struggle for civil rights and against white supremacy; King is often portrayed as a nonviolent insider, while Malcolm X is characterized as a by-any-means-necessary political renegade. But author and Black Power scholar Peniel Joseph says the truth is more nuanced.

"I've always been fascinated by Malcolm X and Dr. King ... and dissatisfied in how they're usually portrayed — both in books and in popular culture," Joseph says.

Since they were founded in the 1930s by the American Legion, the Boys State and Girls State programs have been giving high schoolers a practical education in how government works. Students in every state are chosen to take part in a week-long summer experiment in which they must form their own representative democracy. As we learn from the opening credits of the terrific new documentary Boys State, Bill Clinton, Dick Cheney, Rush Limbaugh and Cory Booker are just a few of the program's famous alums.

Media titan Sumner Redstone, who built the company Viacom into a global empire, died Tuesday at his home in Los Angeles. He was 97. Through shrewd investing and strategic deal-making, Redstone became one of the world's most powerful and unpredictable corporate leaders.

America suffers continued, devastating fallout from chattel slavery.

Our nation did not act alone; Europe's colonial powers also reaped mighty profits from the African slave trade.

Amid the turmoil that followed the murder of George Floyd in South Minneapolis, a history of harassment and abuse in the Twin Cities music scene was exposed by its survivors on social media. In response, three female musicians of color here, announced plans to open a music venue that better represents and serves the community.

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There haven't been any live public performances at America's biggest arts center since mid-March.

Copyright 2020 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

We're sorry to tell you that Trini Lopez has died. The singer and guitarist was 83, suffered complications from COVID-19.

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "LEMON TREE")

The timing feels terribly apt.

Hard Times: An Oral History of the Great Depression turned 50 this year. A bestseller in 1970, the book was one of nearly two dozen written by the cheerfully empathetic historian and journalist Studs Terkel.

Updated at 5:25 p.m. ET

A now-former administrator of Opera Theatre of St. Louis [OTSL], Damon Bristo, was arrested last month for child sex trafficking in the second degree. Bristo has resigned from his position as the company's director of artistic administration.

Copyright 2020 Fresh Air. To see more, visit Fresh Air.

DAVE DAVIES, HOST:

Veteran political consultant Stuart Stevens has spent years working as a strategist for Republican campaigns, including the presidential bids of Bob Dole, George W. Bush and Mitt Romney. But Stevens didn't support the party's candidate in the 2016 presidential election — and he wasn't alone.

"In 2016, when I went out and attacked Trump on television," he says, "I would say maybe a third of the party hierarchy would email me and thank me for doing this."

The Old Guard filmmaker Gina Prince-Bythewood always loved action movies — she just never thought she'd have a chance to make one.

"Those doors were not open at all to women," she says. "It's so hard for women to get into the room, because we don't have action on a resumé. But how do you get action on your resumé if you're not hired to do films with action?"

Back in the days before the coronavirus pandemic, lots of people found community and comfort in singing together, whether at school, as a form of worship, in amateur groups or performing as professionals. Last year, Chorus America reported that some 54 million Americans — that is, more than 15% of the entire country's population — participated in some kind of organized group singing. And that study revealed that nearly three-quarters of those polled felt less lonely.

To read Isabel Wilkerson is to revel in the pleasure of reading — to relax into the virtuosic performance of thought and form one is about to encounter, safe and secure that the structures will not collapse beneath you.

In the Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist's first book, The Warmth of Other Suns: The Epic Story of America's Great Migration, Wilkerson evinced a rare ability to craft deeply insightful analysis of deeply researched evidence — both historical and contemporary — in harmonious structures of language and form.

The promotional black and white photos from Taylor Swift's new album Folklore show the pop star shedding her lipsticked glamour for an ethereal frock to frolic in the meadow.

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LULU GARCIA-NAVARRO, HOST:

Museums around the world are struggling because of the coronavirus: New York's Metropolitan Museum of Art is projecting $100 million in losses this year, and even France's publicly funded Louvre has lost 40 million euros following a four-month closure.

Linden A. Lewis's debut novel The First Sister (book one in a trilogy of the same name) is a lot of fun, as stylish as it is substantial. Would you like your space opera with the social commentary and swaggery cool of Alexandre Dumas, with a dash of Cowboy Bebop and some awesome queer characters? Are you interested in political maneuverings and space economics, fantastically rich worldbuilding and sneaky spy stories? Read on. First Sister might be just the book you've been waiting for.

Editor's note: This story was reported and photographed from February 2019 to March 2020. The text has been updated to reflect the activities of the circus during the pandemic.

Phelelani Ndakrokra prefers not to talk about his past. But what the 23-year-old acrobat will say is that if he hadn't joined the circus ten years ago, he'd probably either be dead or in prison by now.

So you're casting a delightful new children's movie and you need a loveable circus ringleader ... who do you turn to but the homicidal meth kingpin from Breaking Bad? Cranston stars in The One and Only Ivan which comes out on Disney+ on August 21.

Since many of us know Cranston from Breaking Bad, we've invited him to play a game called "Braking ... good!" Three questions about safe driving, inspired by classic driver's education films of yesteryear.

Click the audio link above to find out how he does.

Copyright 2020 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

How's your Latin? Satis, satis? Well, Spencer Alexander McDaniel's Latin is really, really good.

The series Upright opens with a man hauling an upright piano in a trailer across the bare Australian landscape. He's frazzled and alone at the wheel, guzzling beer and gobbling pills. He gets a text message: "Mate. Time is running out. Don't duck this up."

Ah, spell-check.

Then he drives into a ditch, hears his piano bleat, and the shouts of an angry, profane 16-year-old he's just run into. Upright is the story of two strangers, Lucky and Meg, who take off across the expanse of Australia, scheming, swearing, pilfering, and becoming vital to each other.

Nate Marshall has a new collection of poems. It's called Finna, and he says the title of this new book comes from the Southern phrase "fixing to, right, which is like 'about to.' One of the things that I love about that, and that is a kind of central thing in the book, is it's all about what happens next. It's this thing that is informed by history, but that is all about looking forward, all about possibility. That's sort of what I hope the poems do, is that they I hope they sort of wrestle with history, but also look forward."

Alexis Daria's You Had Me at Hola had me at Latinx representation, sexy soapy plot, and a meta-telenovela addicting enough to actually get picked up by Netflix IRL. This book fizzes with sex, betrayal, lies, and family drama — but the good news is, it comes without an actual telenovela's requisite cliffhangers and tragedies.

Copyright 2020 Fresh Air. To see more, visit Fresh Air.

DAVE DAVIES, HOST:

DAVE DAVIES, HOST:

This is FRESH AIR. I'm Dave Davies, in for Terry Gross. Baseball is back, for now at least. And many major league teams this year are celebrating the 100th anniversary of the Negro Leagues, which gave African Americans a place to showcase their talents before the game was integrated.

John Early

Aug 7, 2020

John Early grew up in Nashville, TN, but came to New York City as a teenager to attend NYU, where he studied acting. John quickly became a mainstay in New York's alt comedy scene, hosting shows at the Cake Shop, the Bell House, and Ars Nova.

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