Arts and Culture

The Audio Orchard for May

Apr 26, 2013

1.Vampire Weekend, Diane Young

New Album: Modern Vampires of the City

May 15, Agganis Arena, Boston, MA

2.Iron and Wine, Grace for Saints and Ramblers

Darlingside

Apr 24, 2013
Logan Shannon

VIDEO: The New England based band Darlingside has long been a favorite here at Word of Mouth, so on their recent visit to a song writing and music business summit at the Concord Community Music School, we invited them to play a few tunes live in Studio D. Afterwards producer Zach Nugent sat down to chat with guitarist Don Mitchell and drummer and Concord area native son Sam Kapala.

Production help from Logan Shannon and Taylor Quimby

"Blow the House Down"

Images courtesy of Drawn & Quarterly. Copyright Tom Gauld.

Tom Gauld's cartoon panels have been described as bleak, minimalist, sweet and funny. The London-based cartoonist and illustrator draws a weekly cartoon for The Guardian newspaper’s book review section, and has cracked the US market with comic strips in The New York Times Magazine.  A new collection of those strips called, You’re All Just Jealous of My Jetpack, will be released in the US on April 30th.

Leo Reynolds via flickr Creative Commons

Behold! This week's Saturday show focuses on a bevy of our favorite segments that investigate "Art in the Real World."

Gabriel Kahane

Apr 18, 2013
Gabriel Kahane via gabrielkahane.tumblr.com

Gabriel Kahane made his recital debut as a composer and performer at Carnegie Hall, played piano for Mark Morris Dance Company, premiered a song cycle with John Adams conducting the LA Philharmonic, and performed his “Craigslistlieder” at a number of New York City bars. It’s little wonder the NY Times called Gabriel Kahane a one-man cultural Cuisinart. He’ll be mixing it up Friday, April 19th at the HOP with the premiere of “Gabriel’s Guide to the 48 States”. It’s the culmination of two years as composer-in-residence with the Orpheus Chamber Orchestra.

Heather Maloney

Apr 11, 2013
Zach Nugent / NHPR

Heather Maloney's music has been described as “adventurous folk", pushing the boundaries of the folk genre with lush, full-band arrangements and playful vocal runs. Heather visited the NHPR studios last week to play a few songs and chat with producer Zach Nugent about music, spirituality, and being partial to ramblers.  She will be playing at The Big Room in Barrington New Hampshire on April 20th and at The Music Hall in Portsmouth on May 17th.

Cody York via cloudcult.com

You may know the band cloud cult from an animated commercial that aired during the Super Bowl a few years ago. In exchange for the work, e-Surance helped fund some of the band's costs for greening the recording of album. The fact that Cloud Cult chooses deals like that--writes heart-warming songs, and travels across the country to perform for good causes--may have you wondering if they are for real. But doing good and staying positive are deeply embedded in the DNA of Cloud Cult. This evening the band will perform a live acoustic set during a yoga class at the At Om Yoga studio in Concord. It’s a benefit for a local child with pediatric cancer. I talked with Craig Minowa, singer, guitarist, and leader of Cloud Cult before they headed to New Hampshire and can say that the whole kind-hearted thing is not just PR. In fact, I told him that they are just about the least cynical indie band I can think of.

Arts On Trial

Apr 9, 2013
afsart via flickr Creative Commons

Throughout history, pieces of art – and their creators, have been hauled into the courtroom. They stood accused of obscenity, extramarital dalliances, societal intermingling, and blasphemy – among other equally verbose charges. Government agencies championed their prosecution as a righteous public service – but maybe they just needed to gain a little sense of humor. Regardless, these pieces of art fought the law. Here to discuss whether the law won is Clay Wirestone, arts editor for the Concord Monitor and author of an article in an upcoming issue of Mental Floss called, “Arts on trial.”

Leo Reynolds via flickr Creative Commons

We bring you a collection of tasty segments we know you'll love, using the powers of public radio telepathy. 

IFC Films

Central Park was New York City’s place of refuge and openness until April 19, 1989 when a woman was brutally assaulted and left for dead. Author Sarah Burns turned her research about the event into a documentary film detailing the racially charged convictions of five black and Latino youth. They were exonerated over a decade later when another man confessed to committing the crime.

The Audio Orchard Podcast for April

Apr 1, 2013

1. Generationals, Ten-Twenty-Ten

April 24, State Theatre, Portland, ME

2. Alice Smith, Fool For You

April 9, Brighton Music Hall, Allston, MA

Jimmy MacElroy

You may have heard the news on the show today that our Arts & Culture Producer, Zach Nugent will be leaving our team to join the touring cast of Disney on Ice. We are so sad to be losing such a talented member of our team, but we fully support Zach and his quest to follow his dream.

Zach was scouted for the cast during a recent interview he did with a New Hampshire native, who is also a member of the cast. Unbeknownst to Zach, the producers were incredibly interested in his abilities and only agreed to the interview so they could witness his talent in person. Take a listen to a bit of audio Zach captured after Disney on Ice's Kaitlyn DeRoy saw one of his signature moves up close and personal.

The rest, as they say, is history.

Zach, we will miss you terribly and wish you the best of luck as you capture the dream.

This Weekend's Arts and Culture Scene

Mar 21, 2013

You can treat yourself or another person to a random act of kindness this weekend. there are plenty of things happening around the state worth checking out.

Bring the little ones to Jean’s Playhouse in Lincoln to see three-time Grammy-winner Tom Chapin. He’s sure to play some funny, family-friendly cuts from his new album, Give Peas A Chance, about healthy eating and green living.

And if the snowy spring has got you down, check out the feel good, Tony Award-winning musical from 1961, Bye Bye Birdie. Performed by the Anselmian Abbey Players this weekend at The Dana Center in Manchester …Or for something a little more biblical, head on over to the Palace Theatre to see Andrew Lloyd Webber’s pop classic, Joseph and the Technicolor Dreamcoat.

Also this weekend, the Annual Spring Craft and Specialty Food Fair is on at Rockingham Park in Salem… offering a range from pottery to specialty dog treats to make everyone happy…including those of the four-legged variety.

And, it’s NH Maple Weekend…with more than 100 sugarhouses open statewide, all offering samples, some with pancakes to eat, entertainment to enjoy and animals to pet.

This Weekend's Arts Scene

Mar 21, 2013

You can treat yourself or another person to a random act of kindness this weekend. there are plenty of things happening around the state worth checking out.

Bring the little ones to Jean’s Playhouse in Lincoln to see three-time Grammy-winner Tom Chapin. He’s sure to play some funny, family-friendly cuts from his new album, Give Peas A Chance, about healthy eating and green living.

And if the snowy spring has got you down, check out the feel good, Tony Award-winning musical from 1961, Bye Bye Birdie. Performed by the Anselmian Abbey Players this weekend at The Dana Center in Manchester …Or for something a little more biblical, head on over to the Palace Theatre to see Andrew Lloyd Webber’s pop classic, Joseph and the Technicolor Dreamcoat.

Also this weekend, the Annual Spring Craft and Specialty Food Fair is on at Rockingham Park in Salem… offering a range from pottery to specialty dog treats to make everyone happy…including those of the four-legged variety.

And, it’s NH Maple Weekend…with more than 100 sugarhouses open statewide, all offering samples, some with pancakes to eat, entertainment to enjoy and animals to pet.

Logan Shannon

The moniker, Lady Lamb the Beekeeper came to Mainer Aly Spaltro in a dream, and has been popping up on marquees up and down the East coast ever since. Not to mention online, where we read reviews of her captivating – almost spellbinding --  live performances and steady output of original, idiosyncratic music that we’re calling a mix between Feist and Nirvana.  Ripely Pine is her first studio album, and has already been featured by Time Magazine and NPR setting Lady Lamb well on her way to becoming a national name.

njj4 via Flickr Creative Commons

The Eiffel Tower has inspired countless t-shirts, souvenirs and sentimental works of art. A new Kickstarter project aims to turn the iron and lattice landmark into a gigantic instrument. That’s the dream of composer Joseph Bertolozzi, who proved that he can tackle projects on a mammoth scale when he wired and then played New York’s Mid Hudson Bridge.

via the Museum of Science website

Love dinosaurs?  Want to learn more about the latest in paleontology?

This Saturday, the Museum of Science, Boston offers dinosaur enthusiasts the rare opportunity to hear first-hand from paleontologists from around the U.S. about their research and theories.  Dinosaur Day begins at 10 am, with presentations and panel discussions throughout the afternoon. The not yet annual event, will focus on the Ceratopsidae family—frilled and horned dinosaurs—much like “Cliff”, the 65-million-year-old Triceratops fossil currently on-loan at the Museum.

The Makem & Spain Brothers' Rory Makem

Mar 14, 2013

Just in time for St. Patrick's Day, we get a visit from Rory Makem of The Makem & Spain Brothers, a new generation of Celtic music royalty with roots right here in New England.

Leo Reynolds via Flickr Creative Commons

Our favorite content from the program, delivered in one sound-errific package.

This week, why robot interrogators might beat humans at getting to the truth. Mass shooter Amy Bishop's first victim...her brother, back in 1986. Why jury duty matters. The diverse cast of a New Hampshire production of "To Kill A Mockingbird." And the active social media lives of long-dead celebrities.

This Weekend's Arts Scene

Feb 28, 2013

Violin virtuoso Joshua Bell performs at The Music Hall in Portsmouth Friday night, accompanied by pianist Sam Haywood

If you’re feeling Shakespearean, the Keene State College Theatre Department performs The Tempest this weekend at the Redfern Arts Center

Alvin Ailey American Dance Theatre perform at the Hopkins Center in Dartmouth through the weekend; the San Francisco Chronicle referred to a company production as “spectacular dancing that thrills you to your marrow”.  The program includes Ailey’s signature work, “Revelations.”

And right here in Concord…jazz pianist and composer Pamela Hines will be playing at the Purple Pit.

Sean Hurley

This weekend, the stage version of “To Kill a Mockingbird” premieres at the Rochester Opera House. Reporter Sean Hurley introduces some of the cast and crew members to us in an audio version of a playbill.  In this case, their stories go a little deeper than the blurb in an average program.

Listening For The Elusive Sound Of Ice Chimes

Feb 22, 2013
Ice Chimes
Amanda Loder / NHPR

This year, the Dartmouth College campus has become temporary home for a mixed-media menagerie called Ice Chimes.  And the 20-foot tall pagoda-like structure outside the Life Sciences building gets a lot of curious stares from students.

Ice Chimes is supposed to be interactive.  But it isn’t exactly intuitive.

Everett Collection via newyorkmag.com

Which year would you call the single most important in US cultural history? Try 1993—life before the internet and pop star designer fragrances.  The year that marked the beginning of NAFTA, hope for peace in the Middle East, and a saxophone playing president.

“NYC 1993: Experimental Jet Set, Trash, and No Star” is a new exhibition at the New Museum exploring the year they argue changed everything about art, culture, and politics.  Margot Norton is Assistant Curator at the New Museum and joins us to talk about the art and historical context of the work featured in the show.

Photo courtesy Moonmilk.com

Ranjit Bhatnagar is no stranger to cool projects...he's made iambic pentameter from tweets, and is creating a bunch of instruments out of unexpected items, like a robo- toy piano.  Now, the sound artist can add one more feather to his cap...coming on our show.

In 1981, playwright, performer and theater company director Carlyle Brown decided on a whim to take a trip to Africa. That launched a journey of self-discovery and an adventure that became the basis for a one-man show called “The Fula from America: An African Journey," which Brown performs tonight at The Music Hall in Portsmouth. It’s a fund-raising event for Portsmouth’s African Burying Ground, and will be followed by a candelight procession to the site where the design for a memorial will be unveiled.

New Hampshire Native Skates With Disney

Feb 19, 2013
Greta Rybus

Earlier this month, “Disney on Ice” glided into  Manchester’s Verizon Wireless Arena with a parade of princesses, Peter Pans,  and talking mice on skates.  We sent Word of Mouth producer Zach Nugent to meet a cast member with New Hampshire roots.  Zach arrived a few hours before the show and managed to get in a little bit of ice time.

Mark Larson via Flickr Creative Commons

Nearly half a century ago, Truman Capote’s In Cold Blood detailed the savage murder of the Clutter family in Holcomb, Kansas. That book is regarded as a literary landmark… the first so-called “nonfiction novel” that brought the true crime genre to the mainstream and cemented Capote’s celebrity status. It’s inspired three films, among them, “Capote,” in 2005, which earned a best actor Oscar for Philip Seymour Hoffman.

Leo Reynolds via Flickr Creative Commons

Our shiniest and sparkliest content, all in one show-tacular program. This week, a Salon writer contemplates the history of "white Southern defeat," a foremost expert on gluten explores the hype around the latest food trend, New Hampshire author Ben Nugent talks about his new novel, "Good Kids," and illustrator Danny Gregory explains how grief was overcome with art. Oh, and Sean Hurley contemplates the danger of skating on thick ice.

You can also hear the show on SoundCloud:

Tan Vampires

Feb 13, 2013

When the band Tan Vampires came to our studios last week, we found them to be mostly pale, and pretty lively…it turns out that their name was a bit of a lark invented long before the whole vampire saga.  The other surprise about Tan Vampires is noted…with some disbelief… in just about every review of their well-crafted, soaring, folk-rock songs…they’re from New Hampshire.

This week marks the start of the Spring Festival, or Chinese New Year. This fifteen-day celebration is the longest and most important holiday in China, featuring family reunions, fireworks, traditional meals, red lanterns, and the traditional gift of the Hong Bao, or Red Packet.

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