Arts & Culture

Interviews and stories about art, culture, music, books, food / dining and sports.

Copyright 2017 Fresh Air. To see more, visit Fresh Air.

DAVID BIANCULLI, HOST:

Present Music

Milwaukee’s Present Music not only pushes boundaries musically, but also when it comes to the spaces they perform. Saturday’s concert finds the group performing amongst the dioramas and artifacts of the Milwaukee Public Museum.

Present Music's exploratory concert, Time, Nature, Culture, Soundwill take audience members through the museum to experience performances on every floor.

Rufus Wainwright has always been keen to tackle the classics — this is, after all, a guy whose most recent album, 2016's Take All My Loves, reinterprets Shakespeare sonnets — and his stylistic palette has remained broad enough to encompass, among many other things, an opera.

Click-Bait And Switch

Apr 28, 2017

Many people don't like learning about history, but they DO like reading Buzzfeed articles about kittens. To get more people interested in history, we've written clickbait-style headlines for important historical events. Contestants ring in to guess the event — but what happens after that will SHOCK you.

Heard on Penn Jillette: Fool Us Once

Things With Wings

Apr 28, 2017

Inspired by the 1980s band from Phoenix, Arizona, house musician Jonathan Coulton takes us under his wing for the Mr. Mister parody the world's been waiting for! We rewrote their hit song "Broken Wings" to be about things...with wings.

Heard on Penn Jillette: Fool Us Once

Rinse, Pete, Repeat

Apr 28, 2017

This word game is inspired by our favorite prefix! We invented alternate definitions for words that start with "re." If we said, "I GIVE UP trying to WRITE MY NAME at the bottom of this letter," you would say, "Re-sign" or "resign."

Heard on Penn Jillette: Fool Us Once

Penn Jillette: Fool Us Once

Apr 28, 2017

Magician Penn Jillette prefers tricks to illusions: "which is just gluing two front surface mirrors together at 45 degree angles, and then the sides look like the back!" He doesn't particularly like spending time with his stage partner Teller: "We wanted to work together, but there was no sort of affection." And he doesn't even like magic: "I was never fond of it."

Are We There Yet?

Apr 28, 2017

In honor of our long flight from Brooklyn to Phoenix, this final round is called, "Are We There Yet?" Every answer contains something that sounds like a method of transportation. For example, if we said, "This astronomer was the original narrator of the science show, 'Cosmos,'" you'd answer "Carl Sagan..." which has "car" in it.

Heard on Penn Jillette: Fool Us Once

Mystery Guest

Apr 28, 2017

Our Mystery Guest Stacey Gordon has an interesting job that takes her from Phoenix to a street in New York City. Can you guess what it is before Ophira and Jonathan?

Heard on Penn Jillette: Fool Us Once

Copyright 2017 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Daylight Saving Time Travel

Apr 28, 2017

Fun fact! Phoenix, Arizona does not recognize Daylight Saving Time! So we wrote an audio quiz with clips from famous works involving time travel.

Heard on Penn Jillette: Fool Us Once

Copyright 2017 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Lauren Groh

It's been a little over a month since contributor Lauren Groh embarked on her through-hike of the Appalachian Trail. And as she happily reports, the experience has been "ten times better than I ever imagined it would be."

When Groh started the hike at Amicalola Falls, she had a panicked moment doubting whether she could do it.  "We got started and it just kind of fell into place. It's just put one foot in front of the other and just do it."

The target that New York's Endless Boogie aims to hit with its music is about an inch wide and 10,000 feet deep. That the band threads the needle every time speaks not to the message implicit in its name (yes, this is fried electric-blues boogie; yes, its songs tend to roll on for considerable lengths), but to the satisfaction that message suggests.

We're always excited for the beginning of summer movie season. Despite the fact that it's almost guaranteed to contain some major disappointments and jarring disasters, we often find goofy fun, sharp writing and new stars blowing up (sometimes literally) our cinematic seasons.

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