Arts and Culture | Connecticut Public Radio
WNPR

Arts and Culture

Flickr Creative Commons, dickuhne

There's a kind of madness overtaking us.

Chion Wolf, WNPR

Billings Forge is reshaping Hartford’s Frog Hollow neighborhood through the arts, historic preservation, farm to table food, and affordable housing.

New Music and an Interview With VIMTV

Feb 2, 2011

This week on the Needle Drop, we scope new tracks from Dumbo Gets Mad and Times New Viking. We also sample new LPs from Deerhoof and Destroyer. The guys from Velocities In Music stop by for a little interview, too!

Whether they're served cold, pan-fried until crunchy, or simmered in soup, noodles are a major part of Asia's cuisine. Each country has its own signature dish, from China's Pork Lo Mein to Thailand's Pad Thai to Japan's Yaki-Soba, and the noodles themselves might be made from wheat, rice, or even mung beans. All these dishes have one thing in common, though: They're uniformly delicious. And now, thanks to noted Asian cooking expert Helen Chen, they're a snap to prepare at home. 

Flickr Creative Commons, p_a_H

Until theatrical autobiographical monologue develops a large roster of superstars, everybody will be compared to Spalding Gray, whether or not that makes sense on a case-by-case basis.

The monologue is, I suppose, as old as human speech, but Gray refined it and married it to performance art around 1980.

Finding Pete

Feb 1, 2011

When the stock market crashed in 1929, Benjamin Roth was a young lawyer in Youngstown, Ohio. After he began to grasp the magnitude of what had happened to American economic life, he decided to set down his impressions in his diary.

This extraordinary collection of heavenly cake recipes from "Diva of Desserts" Rose Levy Beranbaum, the award-winning author of The Cake Bible, is an essential kitchen companion for anyone who loves to bake. Illustrated throughout with stunning full-color photography, the book's meticulously tested, easy-to-follow recipes are all you need to create spectacularly beautiful cakes in your home kitchen.

Chion Wolf

"Well, my book is written--let it go. But if it were only to write over again there wouldn't be so many things left out. They burn in me; and they keep multiplying; but now they can't ever be said. And besides, they would require a library--and a pen warmed up in hell." So wrote Mark Twain in an 1889 letter to William Dean Howells.

Knives At Dawn

Jan 31, 2011

An exciting chefs-as-athletes story following the 2009 U.S. team's attempt for the gold at the "Olympics of food"—-the Bocuse d'Or, the world's most prestigious cooking competition.

A Sampling of Samplers

Jan 29, 2011

Everyone remembers final papers and final exams from their school days, but a final needlework sampler?  The female academies attended by students in the 19th century used samplers as a way to track the progress of student needlework.  Throughout Connecticut, girls (and a few young boys) completed samplers as a way to both practice their stitching and track their progress. 

Flickr Creative Commons, stevendepolo

Twenty or 30 years ago there was a Doonesbury strip featuring the president of Walden College and a rich uncle pennybags donor who wanted to give the college a new gym or fieldhouse. And the president tried, gently and awkwardly, to nudge the rich man toward the idea of a new African American Studies Center which the college actually needed. The last frame was the rich guy in full tantrum mode, fists clenched, screaming "I WANNA DONATE A GYM!"

In the late 1960s, jazz saxophonist Charles Lloyd sold millions of records by tapping in to the psychedelic sounds of the days

He achieved a “superstar” status, unfamiliar to jazz musicians today, thanks to the cross-over appeal of this soulful and experimental music.  His 1967 album, “Forest Flower” was one of the biggest selling jazz records of all time.  

Guardians Of Being

Jan 27, 2011

This wonderfully unique collaboration brings together two masters of their fields, joining original words by spiritual teacher Eckhart Tolle with delightful illustrations by Patrick McDonnell, the creator of the acclaimed comic strip MUTTS. Every heartwarming page provokes thought, insight, and smiling reverence for all beings and each moment.

A startling investigation of what people do in disasters and why it matters.  Why is it that in the aftermath of a disaster — whether manmade or natural—people suddenly become altruistic, resourceful, and brave? What makes the newfound communities and purpose many find
in the ruins and crises after disaster so joyous? And what does this joy reveal about ordinarily unmet social desires and possibilities?

Flickr Creative Commons, ky_olsen

You could argue that one of the big breaks in the history of knowledge is happening right now, as we move from being storers of knowledge to being adept searchers for what is stored.

There's a basic shift in the notion of what education is. Most of us moved through an education pipeline in which existed some vague notion that you were better off loading a lot of stuff into your head. It would help you think. It would give you points of reference. You should know a lot of things.

I Shudder

Jan 27, 2011

From his classic plays and screenplays to his sidesplitting pieces for The New Yorker and Premiere, Paul Rudnick is one of our most adored humor writers. Now, in this long overdue collection, he casts his gleefully wicked eye on the world as he sees it: a landscape of stylish dowagers, irascible producers, and full-tilt eccentrics.

Flickr Creative Commons, Sam Howzit

I heard two New York congressmen on NPR this morning talking about last night's co-called Date Night in which Republicans and Democrats had to find people from the opposite party to sit with.

Animal rights activists have named this cat William Curry, after Connecticut's beloved former comptroller and gubernatorial candidate.

Here is what we know about it, via Julie Lewin of the National Institute For Animal Advocacy:

Flickr Creative Commons, psd

Steve Rushin is fearful of robots. First they replaced his father's pin-setting job. Now they're coming for him.

An inspiring collection of kosher recipes-from the simple to the sublime-all created with the slow cooker.

In Jewish Slow Cooker Recipes, the encore to her classic book, Jewish Cooking for All Seasons, Laura Frankel, a respected kosher chef and mother of three teenagers, shares more than 120 easy, delicious recipes for everyday and holiday meals-- all conveniently prepared in the slow cooker-a staple of Sabbath cooking which Frankel affectionately calls her "Shabbat miracle machine."

In this delicious collection, you'll find

Flickr Creative Commons, Alberta Buzz

Finally, Colin and David Edelstein agree on something - Winter's Bone for Best Picture!

America's Greatest Living Film Critic knows his movies. We talked with him about the surprises in the 2010 Oscar nominations and which awards he thinks are a lock. 

Edelstein also dropped some references to a few really interesting movies, a few of which you can find on the sidebar.

File Photo

The Hartford Symphony Orchestra has named Carolyn Kuan its new music director.

Kuan visited our studios last year when she was touring Hartford as a candidate. She's the 10th music director for the HSO and the first woman to hold the position.

She sat down with us again to talk about her vision for the HSO's future. Kuan gave her thoughts on music, Mozart, symphonic performance and how she plans to make the HSO more accessible to patrons increasingly distracted by digital white noise.

New Haven Independent

Yann Beaullan’s mother is Jewish; his father is Cambodian. He grew up listening to Buddhist chants. On Sunday he was worshiping in Wooster Square—to the strains of alto saxes offering Coltranesque riffs on the Christian hymn “Praise God From Whom All Blessings Flow.”

Beaullan has joined what might be called a “happening” new phenomenon in the pews: a weekly jazz-style eucharist that is transforming St. James and St. Paul’s from one of the “frozen chosen” Episcopal churches in town to one of the coolest places to worship in New Haven.

Flickr Creative Commons, El Bibliomata

I grew up in an environment where it was difficult for me to be a snob even if I wanted to.

Revisit Metal's Roots with Ghost

Jan 24, 2011

This week on The Needle Drop, we've got oddball garage rock from Fergus & Geronimo, and some pop rock on the straight and narrow with Smith Westerns.

We're also serving up a track review from Tennis' new album, Cape Dory; plus, some Swedish metal that looks to the past on Ghost's Opus Eponymous.

Pages