Susan Stamberg http://wkar.org en Sid Caesar, Who Got Laughs Without Politics Or Putdowns, Dies At 91 http://wkar.org/post/sid-caesar-who-got-laughs-without-politics-or-putdowns-dies-91 Comedian Sid Caesar, one of early network TV's biggest stars, died Wednesday morning at his home in Beverly Hills. He was 91.<p>Caesar didn't do smut, putdowns or smarmy remarks. Instead, he did <em>skits:</em> grown-up, gentle comedy for the whole family.<p>In one skit, Caesar was the smarter-than-anyone German "professor." Carl Reiner played a movie executive with money problems. The professor's solution? Make a musical — and get the greatest composer in the world. He is shocked to discover that his top choice won't be available.<p><blockquote><p>"Beethoven, dead? Ludwig is gone. Wed, 12 Feb 2014 22:53:00 +0000 Susan Stamberg 49297 at http://wkar.org Sid Caesar, Who Got Laughs Without Politics Or Putdowns, Dies At 91 Sid Caesar, One Of TV's Earliest Stars, Dies At The Age Of 91 http://wkar.org/post/sid-caesar-one-tvs-earliest-stars-dies-age-91 The comic actor Sid Caesar died on Wednesday at the age of 91. He starred in the popular 1950s program, Your Show of Shows, television's first live comedy show, featuring skits and musical numbers. Wed, 12 Feb 2014 21:29:00 +0000 Susan Stamberg 49301 at http://wkar.org Thanksgivukkah: A Mash Of Two Holidays That's Easy To Relish http://wkar.org/post/thanksgivukkah-mash-two-holidays-thats-easy-relish It's that time of year again. Time for Mama Stamberg's Cranberry Relish. Every year since 1972, around Thanksgiving, I've shared my mother-in-law's famous cranberry relish recipe on the radio. It's appallingly pink, like Pepto Bismol — but it tastes terrific.<p>This year, I bring my relish recipe to Thanksgivukkah. Next week, Thanksgiving and the start of Hanukkah fall on the same day. It's a rare convergence.<p>How unusual is it? Well, the last time Thanksgiving and Hanukkah shared a start date was 125 years ago — and it won't happen again for another 76,000 or so years. Fri, 22 Nov 2013 07:57:00 +0000 Susan Stamberg 45661 at http://wkar.org Thanksgivukkah: A Mash Of Two Holidays That's Easy To Relish In 1913, A New York Armory Filled With Art Stunned The Nation http://wkar.org/post/1913-new-york-armory-filled-art-stunned-nation One hundred years ago in New York City, nearly 90,000 people came to see the future of art. The 1913 Armory Show gave America its first look at what avant-garde artists in Europe were doing. Today these artists are in major museums around the world, but in 1913, they were mostly unknown in America.<p>Boasting 1,400 works — from artists such as George Braque, Mary Cassatt, Paul Cezanne, Edgar Degas, and many, many more — it was the biggest art show New York had ever seen. Mon, 11 Nov 2013 08:22:00 +0000 Susan Stamberg 45094 at http://wkar.org In 1913, A New York Armory Filled With Art Stunned The Nation Pen Pal Of Young 'Jerry' Salinger May Have Been First To Meet Holden http://wkar.org/post/pen-pal-young-jerry-salinger-may-have-been-first-meet-holden Fans of the reclusive J.D. Salinger are in their element these days. Thu, 24 Oct 2013 07:17:00 +0000 Susan Stamberg 44241 at http://wkar.org Pen Pal Of Young 'Jerry' Salinger May Have Been First To Meet Holden For F. Scott And Zelda Fitzgerald, A Dark Chapter In Asheville, N.C. http://wkar.org/post/f-scott-and-zelda-fitzgerald-dark-chapter-asheville-nc Asheville, a mountain town in North Carolina, is known for at least two important native sons: writers Thomas Wolfe, whose 1929 novel <em>Look Homeward, Angel</em> eviscerated some locals, and Charles Frazier, whose 1997 civil war novel <em>Cold Mountain</em> is set in the nearby hills. But there is also a little-known story of another writer — F. Scott Fitzgerald — who, along with his wife Zelda, had devastating connections to the town.<p>Fitzgerald spent two bumpy summers in Asheville, at the Grove Park Inn. Tue, 03 Sep 2013 07:01:00 +0000 Susan Stamberg 41678 at http://wkar.org For F. Scott And Zelda Fitzgerald, A Dark Chapter In Asheville, N.C. This Fountain Of Youth Has A Little Extra Zing http://wkar.org/post/fountain-youth-has-little-extra-zing Transcript <p>ORSON WELLES: Of course, there are all sorts of fountains. Some are beautiful, some are purely mythological. Some are silly fountains. Of course, the silliest of all, is the fountain of youth. Old Ponce de Leon thought that one was somewhere down in Florida.<p>SUSAN STAMBERG, HOST: <p>Well, actor Orson Welles never found it, but lots of Floridians claim that the Fountain of youth is in their town - Punta Gorda, for instance. Margaret Baumhardt, who lives nearby in Charlotte Harbor, may not be totally convinced, but she is a big fan of the Punta Gorda fountain. Sun, 28 Jul 2013 11:07:00 +0000 Susan Stamberg 39813 at http://wkar.org At 90, Ellsworth Kelly Brings Joy With Colorful Canvases http://wkar.org/post/90-ellsworth-kelly-brings-joy-colorful-canvases American artist Ellsworth Kelly turned 90 in May, and there's been much celebration. On Wednesday, President Obama presented Kelly with the National Medal of Arts. Meanwhile, museums around the country are showing his work: Kelly sculptures, prints and paintings are on view in New York, Philadelphia and Detroit. Thu, 11 Jul 2013 06:59:00 +0000 Susan Stamberg 38946 at http://wkar.org At 90, Ellsworth Kelly Brings Joy With Colorful Canvases A Paris Vacation For Nashville Millionaires' French Art http://wkar.org/post/paris-vacation-nashville-millionaires-french-art To say that Nashvillean Spencer Hays is crazy for French art is an understatement. "French art just quickens our step, fires our spirit and touches our heart," he says.<p>Hays' passion began when he was in his 30s. By then he was already a millionaire; Forbes estimated his worth at $400 million in 1997, money earned from book-selling and clothing businesses. Hays had humble beginnings.<p>"When Marlene and I grew up in a little old town in Texas, even visiting France was far beyond our expectations," Hays says. Thu, 27 Jun 2013 06:54:00 +0000 Susan Stamberg 38257 at http://wkar.org A Paris Vacation For Nashville Millionaires' French Art Friedkin, Who Pushed Film Forward, Looks Back http://wkar.org/post/friedkin-who-pushed-film-forward-looks-back As a kid in Chicago, director William Friedkin liked to frighten little girls with scary stories. When he grew up, he scared the rest of us <em>with</em> a little girl — Regan MacNeil, who is possessed by the devil in his horror classic <em>The Exorcist.</em><p>And in <em>The French Connection,</em> he put knots in our stomachs with one of the great movie chases in American cinema.<p>When Friedkin directed these films in the 1970s, he was breaking all the rules. Mon, 15 Apr 2013 07:03:00 +0000 Susan Stamberg 34274 at http://wkar.org Friedkin, Who Pushed Film Forward, Looks Back In NPR's New Building, Everything Will Be Better ... Again http://wkar.org/post/nprs-new-building-everything-will-be-better-again <em>Starting Saturday, </em>Weekend Edition<em> is broadcasting under the fourth roof that's sheltered National Public Radio. NPR special correspondent Susan Stamberg has worked in all of the locations since NPR went on the air in 1971, and once again she shepherds us to our new home.</em><em> </em><p>Our very first, temporary offices were at 1625 I Street, in Northwest Washington, D.C., just down the block from the Christian Science Church. No furniture at first, so we sat on the floor. Sat, 13 Apr 2013 09:11:00 +0000 Susan Stamberg 34222 at http://wkar.org In NPR's New Building, Everything Will Be Better ... Again Painting 'Renoir' In Finely Detailed Strokes http://wkar.org/post/painting-renoir-finely-detailed-strokes <p>http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UA4pRAZQY3g</p> Thu, 11 Apr 2013 07:21:00 +0000 Susan Stamberg 34100 at http://wkar.org Painting 'Renoir' In Finely Detailed Strokes For John Baldessari, Conceptual Art Means Serious Mischief http://wkar.org/post/john-baldessari-conceptual-art-means-serious-mischief <p>http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eU7V4GyEuXA</p> Mon, 11 Mar 2013 11:23:00 +0000 Susan Stamberg 32473 at http://wkar.org For John Baldessari, Conceptual Art Means Serious Mischief For Publicist Marvin Levy, It's All About Eyeballs http://wkar.org/post/publicist-marvin-levy-its-all-about-eyeballs Steven Spielberg's film <em>Lincoln</em> has earned 12 Academy Award nominations, including best picture and best director. Another Spielberg film — the multi-Oscar winning <em>Schindler's List</em> — will be celebrating 20 years since its release. These films have at least two important things in common: Spielberg and publicist Marvin Levy.<p>Levy started his career in New York writing questions for quiz shows. He wound up in publicity for MGM radio and TV personalities, but was lured to Hollywood in the mid-1970s. Fri, 22 Feb 2013 05:03:00 +0000 Susan Stamberg 31569 at http://wkar.org For Publicist Marvin Levy, It's All About Eyeballs For Film Set Decorators, Tiny Details Count http://wkar.org/post/film-set-decorators-tiny-details-count Picture Rick's smoky cafe in <em>Casablanca</em>, Lincoln's office at the White House of the 1860s, or the Mos Eisley cantina on the desert planet of Tatooine: A production designer came up with the overall look of those movie sets. But the booze on Rick's bar or the pens on Lincoln's desk — it took a set decorator and a crew to make them look authentic and believable.<p>On a recent chilly winter day in the backyard of a pretty picket-fenced house in Los Angeles, one set decorator is making rosebushes bloom again. Thu, 21 Feb 2013 05:05:00 +0000 Susan Stamberg 31502 at http://wkar.org For Film Set Decorators, Tiny Details Count Hollywood's 'Hooray': Hardly A Happy Hymn http://wkar.org/post/hollywoods-hooray-hardly-happy-hymn When the Oscars are handed out later this month, the ceremony will most likely be punctuated by music that has pretty much come to stand for movies and Movieland. Ironically, the composer grew up in Detroit, and the lyricist came from Savannah, Ga. — yet together they wrote the quintessential Tinseltown anthem.<p>"Hooray for Hollywood" was written for the Warner Brothers film <em>Hollywood Hotel</em>. It was a corny little "let's-go-to-Hollywood-and become-stars" movie from 1937, with some cute dialogue.<p>The movie didn't do much, box office-wise, but that song made it big. Mon, 11 Feb 2013 08:35:00 +0000 Susan Stamberg 30916 at http://wkar.org Hollywood's 'Hooray': Hardly A Happy Hymn WWII 'Canteen Girl' Kept Troops Company From Afar http://wkar.org/post/wwii-canteen-girl-kept-troops-company-afar American service members have long spent holidays in dangerous places, far from family. These days, home is a video chat or Skype call away. But during World War II, packages, letters and radio programs bridged the lonely gaps. For 15 minutes every week, "Canteen Girl" Phyllis Jeanne Creore spoke and sang to the troops and their loved ones on NBC radio.<p>Her Christmas shows were morale boosters. America must "use more sentiment and less tinsel, and that's the way it should be," she told her listeners during one wartime Christmas broadcast. Tue, 18 Dec 2012 08:20:00 +0000 Susan Stamberg 28422 at http://wkar.org WWII 'Canteen Girl' Kept Troops Company From Afar Ravi Shankar, Who Brought Eastern Music To Western Legends, Dies http://wkar.org/post/ravi-shankar-who-brought-eastern-music-western-legends-dies <p>http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HsuFlxxrX8k</p> Wed, 12 Dec 2012 06:00:00 +0000 Susan Stamberg 28151 at http://wkar.org Ravi Shankar, Who Brought Eastern Music To Western Legends, Dies Hopper's Lonely Figures Find Some Friends In Paris http://wkar.org/post/hoppers-lonely-figures-find-some-friends-paris Earlier this summer, I looked for Edward Hopper's <em>Morning Sun</em> at its home in the Columbus Museum of Art in Ohio. In the painting, a woman sits on a bed with her knees up, gazing out a window. She's bare, but for a short pink slip. The iconic Hopper is a must-see, but <a href="http://www.npr.org/2012/08/20/157104327/hoppers-pensive-lady-in-pink-travels-the-world" target="_blank">on the day I visited</a>, it was on loan to an exhibition in Madrid.<p>I finally caught up with <em>Morning Sun</em> in Paris, where it is on display as part of a Hopper show at the Grand Palais. Mon, 10 Dec 2012 08:23:00 +0000 Susan Stamberg 28057 at http://wkar.org Hopper's Lonely Figures Find Some Friends In Paris Leslie Caron: Dancing From WWII Paris To Hollywood http://wkar.org/post/leslie-caron-dancing-wwii-paris-hollywood In the 1950s, the moviegoing world fell in love with a young French ballerina and actress named Leslie Caron. She brightened the silver screen in musical films like 1958's <em>Gigi</em>, where she played a young courtesan-in-training who befriends a rich, handsome suitor in 1900s Paris.<p>When Caron played Gigi, she was a big star. Thu, 29 Nov 2012 10:00:00 +0000 Susan Stamberg 27574 at http://wkar.org Leslie Caron: Dancing From WWII Paris To Hollywood Print-Inspired Art: All The News That's Fit To Paint http://wkar.org/post/print-inspired-art-all-news-thats-fit-paint The print newspaper industry may be struggling, but newsprint is alive and well on the walls of a new exhibition at the National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C. The show is called <a href="http://www.nga.gov/exhibitions/shockinfo.shtm" target="_blank">"Shock of the News"</a> — and it examines a century's worth of interaction between artists and the journals of their day.<p>A 3-foot high, three-dimensional work in one gallery looks like geometric sculpture. The big white rectangle sits on the floor, squared off at the edges. Tue, 25 Sep 2012 07:28:00 +0000 Susan Stamberg 24427 at http://wkar.org Print-Inspired Art: All The News That's Fit To Paint India's Blackout A Reminder Of How Far We've Come http://wkar.org/post/indias-blackout-reminder-how-far-weve-come This week, the world's largest democracy experienced the world's largest power outage. Nearly 700 million — that's more than half a billion — Indians were said to have been without power Tuesday. No air conditioning. No traffic lights. No metro system.<p>Most of the power is back now, but the outage had resonance for me from the long-ago years when I lived in New Delhi and experienced power failures almost as regularly as I did steaming cups of dark, sweet Indian tea.<p>Fifty years ago, most Indians had no electricity. Power belonged — politically and financially — to the rich. Sat, 04 Aug 2012 09:53:00 +0000 Susan Stamberg 21631 at http://wkar.org India's Blackout A Reminder Of How Far We've Come Reflective Art Brings Light, Color To Historic Spaces http://wkar.org/post/reflective-art-brings-light-color-historic-spaces This is a story about amazing beauty, imagination and magical effects — and it begins, ironically enough, at a one-time leprosarium, or hospital for lepers, in Beauvais, France, a small town outside Paris.<p>Lepers were sequestered in Beauvais in the 12th century. That history is now noted in an outdoor art installation made up of slim metal rods that curve up into the shape of a bowl. Tue, 26 Jun 2012 07:02:00 +0000 Susan Stamberg 19547 at http://wkar.org Reflective Art Brings Light, Color To Historic Spaces 15 Summer Reads Handpicked By Indie Booksellers http://wkar.org/post/15-summer-reads-handpicked-indie-booksellers Booksellers know how important a good story is — one that reaches out, pulls you in and keeps you reading late into the warm summer night. Fri, 25 May 2012 07:34:00 +0000 Susan Stamberg 17895 at http://wkar.org 15 Summer Reads Handpicked By Indie Booksellers Power Couple, Covering War (And Waging Their Own) http://wkar.org/post/power-couple-covering-war-and-waging-their-own Before Christiane Amanpour, before Ann Garrels, before Lourdes Garcia-Navarro, there was Martha Gellhorn, one of the first great female war correspondents.<p>From the Spanish Civil War through Vietnam, she covered every major conflict of the day. But Gellhorn's reputation as a journalist was sometimes overshadowed by her marriage to one of the great American writers, Ernest Hemingway.<p>HBO has made a film about Hemingway and Gellhorn, starring Clive Owen and Nicole Kidman. Tue, 22 May 2012 07:19:00 +0000 Susan Stamberg 17702 at http://wkar.org Power Couple, Covering War (And Waging Their Own) A Museum Visit For Art Lovers With Alzheimer's http://wkar.org/post/museum-visit-art-lovers-alzheimers Many art lovers feel completely in the moment when they stroll through the galleries of a museum. That feeling was particularly true on a recent morning at <a href="http://www.kreegermuseum.org/" target="_blank">the Kreeger Museum</a> in Washington, D.C. The Kreeger runs a special program for people with Alzheimer's — seniors, their caregivers and middle school students are paired together to enjoy the art and one another's company.<p>The mansion turned gallery was designed in 1967 by renowned architect Philip Johnson for art collector and philanthropist David Kreeger and his wife, Carmen. Thu, 17 May 2012 07:00:00 +0000 Susan Stamberg 17465 at http://wkar.org A Museum Visit For Art Lovers With Alzheimer's Colorful Visions At African-American Art Exhibit http://wkar.org/post/colorful-visions-african-american-art-exhibit The African-American experience is reflected, right now, on the walls of the Smithsonian American Art Museum in Washington, D.C. Exuberant dancing in Chicago. Laundry on a line in the nation's capital. A girl smiling out from her father's warm jacket — all captured in photographs, paintings and sculptures from the 1920s through the 1990s.<p>The show is called "African-American Art: Harlem Renaissance, Civil Rights Era and Beyond." And there is a question: Does it segregate — or at the very least compartmentalize — African-American artists? Thu, 03 May 2012 06:18:00 +0000 Susan Stamberg 16717 at http://wkar.org Colorful Visions At African-American Art Exhibit In 'Ocean Park,' Gentle Portraits Of California Light http://wkar.org/post/ocean-park-gentle-portraits-california-light In the late 1960s, while America was in turmoil over the Vietnam War and the assassinations of Martin Luther King Jr. and Robert Kennedy, a painter in Santa Monica, Calif., was creating a series of tranquil, glowing canvases that made his reputation and transfixed art lovers. Fri, 02 Mar 2012 08:37:00 +0000 Susan Stamberg 13430 at http://wkar.org In 'Ocean Park,' Gentle Portraits Of California Light The Extraordinary, Ordinary Life Of Alexander Payne http://wkar.org/post/extraordinary-ordinary-life-alexander-payne Alexander Payne watches a movie every day — or tries to, anyway. Lately, the writer and director of <em>The Descendants</em> has been busy going to nomination and awards dinners, in advance of Sunday's Oscar night — when the Best Picture, Best Director and Best Adapted Screenplay prizes could be his.<p>On a recent morning, we joined Payne at his house, up a wriggling canyon road in the Santa Monica Mountains, to see how he was spending this "in between time" — the release of a well-regarded film, the waiting until Oscar night. Fri, 24 Feb 2012 05:01:00 +0000 Susan Stamberg 13030 at http://wkar.org The Extraordinary, Ordinary Life Of Alexander Payne Private Screening: How Hollywood Watches Its Work http://wkar.org/post/private-screening-how-hollywood-watches-its-work Before they made it to the Oscars, the nominated films — not to mention all the films that didn't make the cut — were viewed by some 6,000 members of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. Thu, 23 Feb 2012 05:01:00 +0000 Susan Stamberg 12965 at http://wkar.org Private Screening: How Hollywood Watches Its Work