Arts & Culture

Food
2:46 am
Mon February 20, 2012

Swedish Fat Tuesday Delicacy Kept Alive In Portland

Filling semlor with sweet almond paste requires great concentration from Astrid Foster, age 7. Get the recipe for semlor.
Deena Prichep NPR

Originally published on Mon February 20, 2012 6:56 am

Back when refrigeration wasn't up to modern standards, Fat Tuesday was a time to clear your house of indulgent foods. This led to lots of rich recipes, from Shrove pancakes to King Cake. In Sweden, the specialty is semlor. A group of people in Portland, Ore., are keeping that dish — and a few other Swedish traditions — alive.

Picture soft, sweet rolls, sort of like brioche, piled with creamy almond filling. Now picture them being made by a room full of young, mostly blond children speaking Swedish.

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Monkey See
12:01 am
Mon February 20, 2012

'Awake': Can A Risky New Drama Break A Streak Of Bad Luck?

Jason Isaacs as Michael Britten in NBC's Awake, from writer Kyle Killen.
Lewis Jacobs NBC

Originally published on Tue February 21, 2012 9:16 am

This piece was not my idea. It was Linda Holmes'. If you're reading this blog, you probably share my regard for her take on popular culture. So my ears pricked up when she suggested I look into doing a radio piece on Kyle Killen.

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Author Interviews
4:15 pm
Sat February 18, 2012

Murder, Corruption And Cover-Ups In 'Bloodland'

iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Mon March 18, 2013 6:11 pm

A troubled starlet dies in a helicopter crash off the Irish coast after sending a series of mysterious text messages. Three years later, a hungry young reporter desperate for work takes an assignment to write a quickie celebrity biography of her — but finds complexity and danger.

That seemingly accidental death is the catalyst for the events in Bloodland, a new thriller by Irish author Alan Glynn.

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Music Interviews
6:46 pm
Fri February 17, 2012

Gretchen Peters: Personal Pain As Universal Truth

Gretchen Peters' new album is Hello Cruel World.
Gina Binkley

Country Music Award winner Gretchen Peters had an eventful 2010: The BP oil spill washed up on her doorstep, a good friend committed suicide, and her son announced that he's transgender. The last of those in particular, she says, got her thinking about personal conflict.

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Technology
5:39 pm
Thu February 16, 2012

The New Running Game Where 'Zombies' Chase You

The Zombies, Run! iPhone app is a running game and audio adventure set in a post-apocalyptic world.
Six to Start

Originally published on Sun February 19, 2012 5:39 pm

The new iPhone app called "Zombies, RUN!" is not your standard running game.

It's designed to encourage folks, such as say, video gamers, who aren't usually associated with exercise to take up running.

British writer Naomi Alderman, who is a gamer herself as well as an Orange-award winning novelist, came up with the idea for "Zombies, RUN!" while in a class for amateur runners she tells weekends on All Things Considered guest host Mary-Louise Kelly.

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Music Interviews
3:58 pm
Wed February 15, 2012

Three Poetic Traditions Inspire A Mideast Symphony

Mohammed Fairouz recently premiered his Symphony No. 3: Poems and Prayers, a choral symphony set to Aramaic, Hebrew and Arabic texts.
Samantha West Courtesy of the artist

For his third symphony, the 26-year-old American composer Mohammed Fairouz decided to incorporate text in three languages. Poems and Prayers, which had its debut Thursday in New York, features passages in Arabic, Hebrew and Aramaic.

The symphony was commissioned by Northeastern University, where Fairouz teaches. The idea was to write something exploring the conflicts in the Middle East, so for inspiration, Fairouz delved into the region's poetry — both ancient and modern.

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Books
3:41 pm
Wed February 15, 2012

'Plotto': An Algebra Book For Fiction Writing

iStock Photo

It's been said that there are only seven basic plots in fiction. Pulp novelist William Wallace Cook would beg to differ.

According to Cook, there are a whopping 1,462 plots, all of which he laid out in his 1928 book, Plotto: The Master Book of All Plots.

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The Two-Way
7:57 am
Wed February 15, 2012

Malachy, The Pekingese, Becomes Top Dog In The Land

Malachy, a Pekingese, won best in show at the 136th annual Westminster Kennel Club dog show in New York on Tuesday.
Seth Wenig AP

He took on competition that was much bigger and much faster, but in the end the judges decided Malachy, a Pekingese with a long mop of fur framing his funny little pushed-in face, was the top dog in the land and gave him top honors at the Westminster Kennel Club show in New York.

The New York Times describes his win thus:

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Music News
1:37 pm
Sun February 12, 2012

Whitney Houston, A 'Perfect Instrument,' Dies

Pop diva Whitney Houston was found dead in her Beverly Hills hotel room on the eve of the 54th Grammy Awards.
Getty Images

Originally published on Sun February 12, 2012 5:52 pm

On the eve of the 54th Grammy Awards in Los Angeles, the conversation was all about Whitney Houston. The 48-year-old pop diva was discovered dead in her room at the Beverly Hilton Saturday afternoon. The cause of her death was under investigation.

Houston died alone in the same hotel that was the venue for a party she had often entered in triumph: the annual pre-Grammy Awards bash given by her mentor, recording impresario Clive Davis.

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Arts & Culture
6:00 am
Fri February 3, 2012

NH this Weekend: Game? What Game?

It's not all about sports bars and Bowl parties; Hippo Editor Amy Diaz has a few suggestions for those who want a little art this weekend, including a new exhibit at The Currier, a trio of one act plays, and some opera

Music Interviews
7:01 am
Thu February 2, 2012

Starr Soldiers On With 'Ringo 2012'

Ringo Starr's new album is Ringo 2012.
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Wed February 1, 2012 8:21 pm

Richard Starkey always had dreams of being a musician — long before he took up the drums, joined The Beatles and became Ringo Starr. But his career didn't end when the band broke up.

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13.7: Cosmos And Culture
10:39 am
Wed February 1, 2012

The Mayan Apocalypse And The Meaning Of Life

When you reach the end of your journey, will you be able to look back on a life well lived?
Raymond Roig AFP/Getty Images

Since Adam wrote here yesterday of science as a meaningful pursuit, or better, of how a science-inspired way of quenching our unquenchable thirst for knowledge about ourselves and the world will add meaning to one's life, I'd like to take off on a tangent also springing from Umair Haque's recent blog post in the Harvard Business Review.

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Arts & Culture
6:00 am
Fri January 27, 2012

NH this Weekend: Ask the Filmmaker

You can catch up on the Oscar-nominees this weekend, but there's also a chance to catch a rocumentary on Portsmouth's music scene in the 90's and ask the screenwriter of Ground Hog Day why he wanted Bill Murray to live forever.  Hippo Editor Amy Diaz has the popcorn.

 

 

Remembrances
11:54 am
Fri January 20, 2012

Etta James: The 1994 Fresh Air Interview

Etta James onstage at the 2009 New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival.
Rick Diamond Getty Images

Originally published on Fri January 27, 2012 10:54 am

Etta James, the legendary vocalist who is perhaps best known for her version of the song "At Last," has died. She was 73.

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Arts & Culture
6:00 am
Fri January 20, 2012

Eat & Drink (all week)

Hippopress

Hippo Editor Amy Diaz tells NHPR's Rick Ganley about Concord's Dine Out and 9th annual New Hampshire Wine Week

The Two-Way
7:25 am
Wed January 18, 2012

If You Really Need Wikipedia Today, You Can Get To It

Wikipedia's blackout.
Wikipedia.org

Originally published on Wed January 18, 2012 8:57 am

Just to be clear:

Wikipedia's English pages have indeed "gone black" until midnight ET tonight — part of an organized protest by it and many other websites over pending anti-online piracy legislation in Congress.

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Music News
12:01 am
Wed January 18, 2012

From Mega Man To Final Fantasy, Live Video Game Music

Nobuo Uematsu plays keyboard with Earthbound Papas, a rock band made up of video-game soundtrack composers.
Lindsay Totty NPR

Originally published on Wed January 18, 2012 9:03 am

Every year, thousands of video-game fans flock to the Washington, D.C., metropolitan area for a unique music festival called MAGFest. It's short for "Music and Gaming Festival," and it's designed to celebrate the music of video games.

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Deceptive Cadence
2:53 pm
Mon January 16, 2012

Violinist Joshua Bell: 'French Impressions,' Yesterday And Today

Joshua Bell revisits the classic Violin Sonata by Cesar Franck on his new album.
Lisa Marie Mazzucco

When Joshua Bell was 21, he recorded an iconic piece of chamber music for piano and violin — the Sonata in A major by Cesar Franck. Today, Bell is 44 and he's recorded it again. It's on his new album, French Impressions, with pianist Jeremy Denk.

All Things Considered host Robert Siegel invited Bell to listen to his old recording for a little session of compare-and-contrast.

"Do you hear the same violinist?" Siegel asks, after playing for Bell the opening bars of his 1989 recording.

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Movies
6:01 am
Sat January 14, 2012

Wim Wenders On 'Pina': A Dance Documentary In 3-D

Damiano Ottavio Bigi and Clementine Deluy, both members of the Tanztheater Wuppertal under Pina Bausch, perform her choreography in Pina.
IFC Films

The film Pina is Germany's official entry at the 84th Academy Awards — and a collaboration between two famous Germans of the postwar generation. The filmmaker Wim Wenders captures the groundbreaking modern-dance choreography of the late Pina Bausch, in what many critics are calling a groundbreaking use of 3-D film.

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Movie Reviews
1:45 pm
Fri January 13, 2012

An 'Iron Lady' Fully Inhabited By Meryl Streep

Meryl Streep (center) stars as Margaret Thatcher in Phyllida Lloyd's biopic about the former prime minister of the United Kingdom.
The Weinstein Co.

Originally published on Fri January 13, 2012 12:12 pm

I admit I was biased against the Margaret Thatcher biopic The Iron Lady. Not, you understand, against Thatcher and her Tory politics. Against Meryl Streep and her accents. Which are great, no doubt. But I went in resolved not to fall for her pyrotechnics yet again. I wanted realism.

Well, it didn't take long to realize that I was watching not only one of the greatest impersonations I'd ever seen — but one that was also emotionally real.

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StoryCorps
9:52 am
Fri January 13, 2012

Threats And Lies, And 'Who I'm Supposed To Be'

Nathan Hoskins told Sally Evans the story of how his mother tried to scare him out of being gay, during a visit to StoryCorps in Lexington, Ky.
StoryCorps

Originally published on Fri January 13, 2012 12:01 am

Nathan Hoskins knew from an early age that he was gay. But when he was growing up in rural Kentucky, his mother took extreme steps to convince him otherwise.

"When I was in sixth grade, I had met a good friend and he wasn't interested in girls," Hoskins, who's now 33, tells his friend Sally Evans. "One day, he said, 'I have a Valentine's Day card for you.'"

"I asked him for it, and he said it was so special that he mailed it," he says. "And he didn't know he'd done a very terrible thing because at my house only one person got the mail — and that was my mother."

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Arts & Culture
6:00 am
Fri January 13, 2012

Spotlight on Local Music

Making a living as a working musician has never been easy. Most work day jobs and feed their stage passions at night and on weekends, playing in the corners of smoky bars and dimly-lit restaurants. The dream for many weekend warriors is to play music full-time.  One New Hampshire musician that has made the leap is Plymouth’s Jim Tyrrell. Now he’s hoping to help other Granite State acts with a little promotion… by exposing them on a new local TV show as well as online.  He talked with NHPR's Rick Ganley about playing music, his new show and the New Hampshire music scene. 

Arts & Culture
12:00 am
Fri January 13, 2012

NH this Weekend: Unique Theatre

Hippo Editor Amy Diaz talks with NHPR's Rick Ganley about a new play from New Hampshire's Ernest Thompson  Political Suicide  and a new stage adaptation of the classic Frankenstein.

 

 

Theater
1:01 pm
Thu January 12, 2012

'Intergalactic Nemesis': From Radio To Page To Stage

A Multimedia Production: The performance of The Intergalactic Nemesis involves (from left to right) three voice actors, a foley artist, a keyboardist and, overhead, art from the graphic novel on screen.
Intergalactic Nemesis/The Robot Planet

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Digital Life
10:26 am
Thu January 12, 2012

A War To Watch: YouTube Takes On Television

Screenshot from YouTube

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Arts & Culture
1:00 pm
Tue January 3, 2012

Museum Brings Pompeii To Life

Body cast of a young woman from A Day in Pompeii on exhibit now through February 12, 2012, at the Museum of Science, Boston.
© William Starling, Photographer.

In August 79 AD, disaster struck among the cities surrounding Mt. Vesuvius in Italy.  It is believed that the Roman citizens living in that area did not know that the mountain looming above their homes was a volcano, nor did they know that the earthquakes leading up to that day were an indication that an eruption would follow.

When it erupted that day, Mt. Vesuvius eventually sealed everything and everyone in its path beneath 70 feet of lava.

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Arts & Culture
4:06 pm
Fri December 23, 2011

Christmas, Auto Racing, Lights, and a Baby

Brady Carlson, NHPR

When you think of Christmas, auto racing might not come to mind.

But the New Hampshire Motor Speedway in Loudon has turned a mile long race course into a Christmas display featuring more than a million LED lights.

NHPR’s Brady Carlson took his family to see the show and has this report.

I’m not really a light kind of guy – in fact, the first thing I do when I host All Things Considered is turn down the studio lights.

Winter solstice is fine with me.

But then I’m not really the target demographic for the Gift of Lights show.

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Arts & Culture
9:00 am
Wed December 14, 2011

Holiday Books 2011

Writers Russell Banks, Ann Patchett and Jeffrey Eugenides all have new novels out.  Horror writer Stephen King has a new thriller based on the Kennedy assassination, while notables Glenn Beck, Bill O’Reilly and Chris Matthews tell the true story of Presidents Washington, Lincoln and Kennedy. We’ll look at the books that may be under your Christmas tree this holiday season.

Guests

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Arts & Culture
5:22 pm
Fri December 9, 2011

North Country Man Recreates World's Most Elegant Cars

Photo: Chris Jensen NHPR

LISTEN 

While there are thousands auto body mechanics in the U-S, only a handful have been able to turn their work into a specialized art form.

One of those artists lives in the North Country re-creating some of the world’s most elegant automobiles.

Banging sound

In a shop in Bethlehem Joe Stafford is beating – ever so carefully - an aluminum panel.

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Arts & Culture
11:01 am
Wed December 7, 2011

A Different Look At What It Means To Be A New Hampshire Native

 

I have done a lot of things in New Hampshire.

I have climbed Mount Monadnock in a sleet-storm, ridden a snow machine deep into the woods of Coos County; I have met future presidents, made maple syrup, split untold cords of firewood, battled ice dams, swallowed black flies; I’ve eaten beans that had been cooked in a hole in the ground in Berlin. 

I’ve been to the Isles of Shoals and to Donald Hall’s living room.

I once presented Hugh Gregg with the gift of a sack full of turnips. 

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