Arts

Arts and culture

When Míriam Colón left Puerto Rico for New York City in the 1950s, to study at the Actors Studio, she became the first Puerto Rican actor to be admitted to the prestigious program. By the time she died Friday at the age of 80, Colón had acted in more than 90 films and founded a traveling theater designed to help other Latina actresses follow the trail she blazed.

Jordan Peele used to be half of the comedy duo Key & Peele, with his partner Keegan-Michael Key. (You may remember Peele as the calm President Obama who needed an Anger Translator). His most recent project is the horror film Get Out, which he wrote, produced and directed.

We've invited Peele to play a game called "Eh-oh, eh-oh": Three questions about the children's TV show Teletubbies, which marks is 20th anniversary this month.

Michael Rodriguez is both a military man and a muse. Years after President George W. Bush sent him into war, the two men now call each other friends.

Rodriguez was a U.S. Army Special Forces Green Beret who served from 1992 to 2013. He's featured in President Bush's book of portraits of more than 60 soldiers, sailors, airmen and Marines who served in wars under his watch. It's called Portraits of Courage: A Commander in Chief's Tribute to America's Warriors.

The movie that won the Grand Jury Prize at Sundance in January is about a woman whose home is burglarized. She then becomes a vigilante guided by one simple wish: that people just be nice to each other.

I Don't Feel at Home in This World Anymore, now out on Netflix, is Macon Blair's debut as a director. He's best known as an actor, having starred in Blue Ruin and last year's surprise cult hit Green Room. For his turn behind the camera, Blair wanted to mash up the genres he loved as a kid.

For lovers of traditional circus shows, the announcement that the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus was closing may have come as a shock. But the nonprofit Circus Now wants you to know that the circus is more than ringmasters, elephants and lion tamers.

What inspired realpolitik bare-knuckler Niccolo Machiavelli to compose his 16th century masterwork, The Prince? The real question might not be what, but whom? Cesare Borgia stands as the best candidate, at least according to In the Name of the Family, historical novelist Sarah Dunant's second work (after Blood and Beauty) devoted to the tightly knit Borgia clan. The family dominated the military, political and religious affairs of the period.

When I started writing stories four years ago, I knew, in a very vague but urgent way that I wanted to tell "my story," or at least the stories that were important to me: stories about the people I knew and loved, black and brown people, first-generation kids and our parents, poor people and working-class people and barely-middle class people trying to find meaning and connection and comfort.

At the heart of Gustav Metzger's best-known work rests a seeming contradiction: The truest work of creation contains within itself the seeds of its own destruction. Working with acids and liquid crystals, Metzger often made his art to fall apart, break down or disappear entirely — and in doing so, better reflect the crumbling world around it.

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

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

A few years ago, Chimamanda Adichie received a message from a childhood friend asking for advice: She wanted to know how to raise her newborn daughter to be a feminist.

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

ARI SHAPIRO, HOST:

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

DAVE DAVIES, HOST:

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

DAVE DAVIES, HOST:

All The Answers From A To A

Mar 3, 2017

This final round is inspired by our very own acronym: AMA! The answer to every clue begins and ends with the letter A.

Heard on Tim Daly: Mr. Madam Secretary

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

OPHIRA EISENBERG, HOST:

TV Guile

Mar 3, 2017

Quick — What's the TV show where celebrities quickstep and tango to show off marks left from surgeries and stabbings? If you said "Dancing with the Scars", you're already tuned in! We changed one letter in the title of a popular TV show and re-wrote the description based on the new name. Contestants buzz in to guess what it is.

Heard on Tim Daly: Mr. Madam Secretary

A Band By Any Other Name

Mar 3, 2017

There was a time when Black Sabbath was known as Polka Tulk Blues Band and Creed was The Naked Toddler. Contestants must guess famous bands based on their original (and slightly odd) names.

Heard on Tim Daly: Mr. Madam Secretary

Mystery Guest

Mar 3, 2017

This week's mystery guest is Harvey Burgett, an accomplished music composer, conductor and organist. In 2015, Harvey won a national title for something he only started doing four years ago! Ophira Eisenberg and Jonathan Coulton ask "yes" or "no" questions to figure it out what it was for.

Heard on Tim Daly: Mr. Madam Secretary

Magazines Other Than Vogue

Mar 3, 2017

Let your body move to the music as you guess the names of the magazines Jonathan Coulton is singing about, in this parody of Madonna's "Vogue."

Heard on Tim Daly: Mr. Madam Secretary

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

To Mock A Harper Lee

Mar 3, 2017

In this game, we describe hypothetical sequels to the classic novel To Kill a Mockingbird with much better names. Each title plays off the original EXCEPT we've replaced the word "kill" with a rhyming verb and the word "mockingbird" with a different, three-syllable animal. For example, if we said, "Scout excites a spotted, laughing, dog-like scavenger, by taking it on a roller coaster," the title of that sequel would be "To THRILL a HYENA."

Tim Daly: Mr. Madam Secretary

Mar 3, 2017

Madam Secretary star Tim Daly says men come up to him all the time to thank him for portraying a "competent" man on TV. Daly, who in the show plays the husband of the Secretary of State, told host Ophira Eisenberg that the portrayal can sometimes get a little out of hand. "In the first season...by the the fourth episode I'd cooked like fourteen meals, and I was like okay...if I'm playing a 21st century version of a housewife...I don't want to do that either!"

When we offered our friend Barrie Hardymon the chance to sit in our fourth chair for a discussion of Big Little Lies and Feud, I must tell you, listeners: she leapt. And if you know anything about Barrie, you know that she doesn't leap halfway.

As horror movies go, 1962's What Ever Happened to Baby Jane? was a B movie, in budget and, if I gave it one, a letter grade. It didn't deserve an A for its scares or its innovation, as Alfred Hitchcock's Psycho did two years earlier, or his movie The Birds would in the following year.

Sanity Is Slowly Lost In 'Spaceman Of Bohemia'

Mar 3, 2017

Jakub Procházka, a citizen of the Czech Republic in the very near future, loves nothing more than silence and solitude. So, despite his cozy position as a professor of astrophysics and a tranquil domestic life with his wife Lenka, he's oddly relieved to be chosen as the first Czech to travel to space, where the most profound silence and solitude abound. Not that his mission is a calming one: The year is 2018, and a strange comet has left a vast cloud of space dust between Earth and Venus. The night sky has turned from black to perpetually purple.

Copyright 2017 WNYC Radio. To see more, visit WNYC Radio.

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

When Ryan Murphy explains what he does as a TV showrunner, he admits it can sound kind of lofty. "The greatest thing that you have when you're a showrunner is this opportunity to create worlds," he says, laughing a bit. "And it always sounds so insane when somebody says, 'Well, what do you do?' And you say, 'I create worlds.'"

He's a handsome fellow who can play all sorts when given half a chance, but Michael Shannon's alarming bone structure and "you-talkin'-to-me?" eyes tend to trap him in many Frankenstein-adjacent roles. Which is why you might be forgiven for spending much of Wolves, a somber family drama with a fun sports movie neatly tucked inside, waiting for Shannon to explode. And he is a familiar coiled spring as Billy, the self-immolating father of a promising high-school basketball star.

Actors are the most visible links the movies possess to their own past, because while actors age, the image of them that we carry with us does not. When you look at Shirley MacLaine today, you can see the young widow giggling over a corpse in Alfred Hitchcock's The Trouble With Harry, the melancholy mistress in The Apartment whose radiant smile masks the fact that she's given up on love and life, and the heartbreaking single mother forced to watch her daughter die in Terms of Endearment.

Fifteen years ago, director Jeffrey Blitz kicked off his career with the hit documentary Spellbound, which brought audiences into the high-stakes world of spelling bees, following eight competitors on the road to the 1999 National Spelling Bee. The kids were all outcasts, products of hard-driving parents who pushed them to memorize words like "hellebore" and "seguidilla" and study their lingual roots like thickly bespectacled Talmudic scholars.

Long live Logan, James Mangold's sad, stirring requiem for the X-Men franchise's most beloved character. The only problem with calling it the boldest and most affecting superhero flick in many years is that it's barely a superhero movie at all.

For a man who had just spent a week living inside a rock, sucking oxygen through tiny air holes and storing days' worth of his own waste in bottles closely around himself, Abraham Poincheval was admirably even-keeled.

"I'm a little dazed, which I imagine is totally normal after one week living in a rock," the French performance artist told reporters who had gathered Wednesday at Paris' Palais de Tokyo museum to see him emerge from the more than 10-ton boulder.

Pages