This interview will be on “St. Louis on the Air” over the noon hour Tuesday. This story will be updated after the show. You can listen live . Jessica Hentoff is quick to insist that the primary focus of Circus Harmony, the St. Louis-based organization she heads up, isn’t to turn kids into top-notch circus professionals. And yet the program has a track record of doing just that — even as it changes lives in other ways, too. This fall, a total of four Circus Harmony alumni are touring with Cirque du Soleil, the largest circus company in the world. They include St. Louis natives Melvin Diggs, Sidney ‘Iking’ Bateman, Terrance ‘T-Roc’ Robinson and Chauncey Krone. Hentoff couldn’t be more proud of them — and just returned from travels to Vancouver and Chicago this past weekend where she watched them perform. On Tuesday’s St. Louis on the Air , host Sarah Fenske will talk with Hentoff about the success the program and its participants have seen. The conversation will also include comments
EAST ST. LOUIS — A new weekly tour in the city aims to bring its cultural and historical ties to the fine arts to life. Each Friday, up to 10 participants move through three well-known establishments in East St. Louis with Miles Davis’ childhood home as the focal point. The Historic Jazz and Poetry Excursion starts at the Culture Cafe restaurant , then heads to House of Miles East St. Louis , and finishes at the Local Legends Listening Lounge .
Jazz Unlimited for December 8, 2019 will be “The Sacred in Jazz.” Jazz can be a sacred, spiritual music, as witness the works of John Coltrane, Duke Ellington, Dave Brubeck, Charlie Haden and Grant Green and others. There is more to that direction in jazz than you might think. We will explore connections between the sacred and the secular from other religions with selections from Johnny Griffin and the Big Soul Band, the Duke Ellington Sacred Concerts, John Coltrane, Alice Coltrane, Cyrus Chestnut, Dave Brubeck, Max Roach, our own Grant Green, Charlie Haden & Hank Jones, Abdullah Ibrahim, Charles Lloyd, the Turtle Island String Quartet, Albert Ayler, “Rahsaan” Roland Kirk and Pharoah Sanders. The Slide Show contains my photographs of some of the musicians heard on this show. Here is an interview with the Turtle Island string Quartet on their "Love Supreme" album.
This interview will be on “St. Louis on the Air” during the noon hour on Monday. This story will be updated after the show. You can listen live . While “the cyclical nature of generational denigration is embedded in our history,” generational labels like “Baby Boomer” and “Millennial” are artificial and wrong, says St. Louis University associate professor Cort Rudolph. Rudolph recently wrote about the topic in his campus editorial “ OK Boomer Not OK, Nor Backed by Research .” Mostly, he is concerned that routinely categorizing people of different ages by generation leads to ageism. On Monday’s St. Louis on the Air , host Sarah Fenske will talk with Rudolph about use of the recent phrase “OK Boomer” and what the research tells us about whether there are major differences between the Silent Generation, baby boomers, Generation X, millennials and the most recent category, Generation Z. Do you feel there are inherent differences between the generations that aren’t due simply to age? Does
This interview will be on “St. Louis on the Air” over the noon hour Monday. This story will be updated after the show. You can listen live . As the end of the year approaches, our partners at Sauce Magazine will join St. Louis on the Air to reflect on the best new local restaurants serving up deliciousness in 2019. On Monday’s program, host Sarah Fenske will talk with the magazine’s managing editors Catherine Klene and Heather Hughes and art director Meera Nagarajan about their selections — from fine dining featuring various eclectic offerings to classic diners. The panel will also discuss their personal favorite dishes and highly anticipated restaurants opening in the new year.
The Mississippi River has been integral to life in the St. Louis region for hundreds of years — from Native Americans who occupied areas in and around Cahokia Mounds to the later arrival of Europeans. On Friday’s St. Louis on the Air , host Sarah Fenske talked with Andrew Wanko, public historian for the Missouri Historical Society and author of the new book, “Great River City: How the Mississippi Shaped St. Louis.” David Lobbig, curator of environmental life at the Missouri Historical Society, also joined the conversation. He is the content lead on the Missouri History Museum’s newest exhibit, “Mighty Mississippi,” which opened Nov. 23. Hear their conversation: “ St. Louis on the Air ” brings you the stories of St. Louis and the people who live, work and create in our region. The show is hosted by Sarah Fenske and produced by Alex Heuer , Emily Woodbury , Evie Hemphill , Lara Hamdan and Tonina Saputo. The engineer is Aaron Doerr , and production assistance is provided by Charlie
As another "Star Wars" movie speeds toward the galaxy this month, fans are eagerly anticipating its arrival — while non-fans may be yawning over the premiere of yet one more big-budget action flick. But regardless of one’s feelings about "Star Wars," Marvel or other modern myths that dominate pop culture, self-described “superfan but also a critical fan” James Croft argues that these persistent hero narratives overlap with the real world in powerful ways. “We can learn so much about ourselves and about our culture,” Croft has said, “by exploring how heroism is portrayed in movies like ‘Star Wars’ – including how notions of what heroism is, and who can be considered a hero, have developed over time.” As the outreach director for the Ethical Society of St. Louis, Croft plans to dig into this topic at a free event Thursday evening at the society. On Thursday’s St. Louis on the Air , he joined Sarah Fenske in studio alongside Martin Casas, owner of Apotheosis Comics & Lounge, which is
The St. Louis Public Radio digital team crafted its first Photojournalism Prize photography contest last month. The competition provided professional publicity, encouragement and training to St. Louis-area high school students interested in journalistic photography. This year’s theme was “Window to my World,” and participants were required to tell a story with a caption, image and personal reflection. The six prize categories were: Best Portrait, Best Landscape, Best Still Life, Best Action Shot, Best Caption and Best in Show. All winners received a master class with station photojournalists and publication on stlpublicradio.org .
The Grand Chess Tour wrapped up the final leg of its 2019 regular season with the Tata Steel Chess Rapid & Blitz held Nov. 22-26 in Kolkata, India. This was the strongest tournament of its kind to be held on Indian soil.
A newly renovated building is now open in Grand Center. It’s called the High Low. And like many other buildings in Grand Center, it’s focused on the arts. But unlike many of the others, it’s not a theater or a performance space. Instead, it calls itself a “venue for freedom of expression through spoken and written word.” In other words, it aims to be a literary hub for a city that’s long had an outsized impact on the world of letters. Like many newer developments in Grand Center, the High Low is a project of the Kranzberg Arts Foundation. On Wednesday’s St. Louis on the Air , foundation executive director Chris Hansen explained the impetus for what he describes as a “labor of love.”
The Omnimax Theater at the St. Louis Science Center reopened last week after a $3.5 million renovation. Chief among the changes is a switch from film to digital projection. While most theaters have made that transition, the complexities of the Imax format on a domed screen presented challenges. On Tuesday’s St. Louis on the Air , host Sarah Fenske talked with Jackie Mollet, managing director of visitor services at the St. Louis Science Center. She oversees the operations of the Omnimax Theater.
By the mid-1960s, Conrad Hilton’s brief marriage to Zsa Zsa Gabor was decades behind him. The hotel magnate was worth an estimated $100 million, but he tended to be tightfisted with both his ex-wives and his children. So how did a pair of St. Louis nuns persuade Hilton to give them more than $1.5 million — $12.6 million in today’s dollars? As Webster University professor emeritus Allen Carl Larson discovered, it took three years of correspondence, a shared faith and a deep mutual respect. And, yes, quite a bit of cajoling. “You are a first-class saleslady,” Hilton wrote Sister Francetta Barberis, president of what was then Webster College, in 1961. Indeed she was, as their letters charmingly attest.
Wynton Marsalis has championed traditional jazz for decades, working many of its styles into the big-band format. In 1997, the acclaimed trumpeter, composer and bandleader became the first jazz musician to win the Pulitzer Prize in Music, for his oratorio “Blood on the Fields.” He’s also written three symphonies. His latest, “Swing Symphony,” was recorded at Powell Hall in 2016 and released in July. The performance was a collaboration between St. Louis Symphony Orchestra, then led by David Robertson, and Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra , which Marsalis founded. Marsalis and his ensemble return to Powell Hall on Wednesday for a concert featuring Christmas music arranged for big band.
Maybe you know him from “The Daily Show.” Or maybe "CBS Sunday Morning.” Perhaps you saw him on Broadway (in “The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee”) or heard him on NPR (for “Wait Wait … Don’t Tell Me”). Or maybe you just read his first book, “All the President’s Pets.” As that long roster of possibilities suggests, Mo Rocca has become a one-man “Jeopardy” category. (And, yes, he’s been on “Jeopardy” — the 2015 celebrity version.) And his new book, “Mobituaries,” has a similar polymathic quality. In it, he celebrates people, places and even things that have been unfairly forgotten or whose deaths didn’t receive the outpouring you might have expected: movie stars, movements, even the humble station wagon. In both the book and the successful podcast of the same name, Rocca aims to right the wrongs.
Elsie McGrath is an unlikely renegade. For much of her life, the 81-year-old tried to avoid confrontation and follow the rules. But that changed in 2007, when she became an ordained priest — and in doing so, broke one of the most fundamental rules in Roman Catholicism. "This was definitely not part of the plan," McGrath said, of her ordination. "This was what the spirit within me was leading me to." She was excommunicated along with fellow priest Rose Marie Hudson and Bishop Patricia Fresen, who ordained the two at a synagogue in St. Louis. Only men are allowed to join the Roman Catholic clergy, but proponents of women's ordination are hopeful that may change. During a Vatican summit in October, Pope Francis said he would explore the possibility of female deacons , a class of ministry allowed to oversee weddings and baptisms but not consecrate the Communion wafer and wine. The early church A key part of the debate centers on whether women were ordained in the early days of the church.
When some music lovers cue up the oldies, they go way back — sometimes 1,000 years or so. Definitions vary as to what exactly counts as early music, but the wide-ranging category goes back at least to the beginning of European music notation, around the 10th century. Early music ensembles may perform music from the medieval era, the Renaissance, the Baroque period, and even some written as late as the 19th century. In this episode of Cut & Paste, we talk with two experts who help keep early music alive in and around St. Louis.
Over the past decade, I think it’s safe to say that the St. Louis Chess Club and World Chess Hall of Fame have made an impact on the St. Louis region. For starters, the Chess Club’s Scholastic Chess Initiative has served over 60,000 students.
Michael Turley wasn’t always a farmer. In fact, before he started managing the 120 Holstein cows on his family’s dairy farm in Greenville, Illinois, he was managing workers at the St. Louis communications and marketing firm Osborn Barr as its CEO. Turley joined Tuesday’s St. Louis on the Air, along with Sauce managing editor Catherine Klene, to talk about his journey for this month’s Sound Bites segment . They also discussed innovation in the farming industry and how farms are adapting their business plans to stay relevant to consumers.
The Thanksgiving holiday is a time to reflect and share the things for which we are grateful. On Tuesday’s St. Louis on the Air , host Sarah Fenske talked with Jill Stratton of Washington University in St. Louis. Stratton is known as the university’s “Dean of Joy,” though her official title is associate dean for undergraduate residential learning and special assistant to the provost. For years, Stratton has researched and taught a course about the psychology of young adulthood. Her interests include figuring out how students can be more successful, happier and joyful. “Cultivating gratitude can help us be happier,” Stratton said. “Sometimes we think it’s the surface things that make us happy, the circumstances. But there’s a lot of research out there about these things called ‘intentional acts.’” Intentional acts include surrounding yourself with people you love and having social interaction. Stratton’s top recommendation to practice gratitude is to keep a gratitude journal . “ St.
What does St. Louis’ Robison Park have in common with the Wild West Chimpanzee Show at the St. Louis Zoo? Both no longer exist — and both are depicted in a new book showing off historic photos from the Gateway City. The book, “Scenes of Historic Wonder,” offers context for more than 150 snapshots of a city far different from the one today. Scenes include an 1865 shipwreck, a 1931 World Series victory and the Roosevelt High School Ukulele Club, circa 1935. On Tuesday’s St. Louis on the Air , author Cameron Collins joined us to discuss the book, co-authored by Jaime Bourassa and published by Reedy Press. This is Collins’ third book of local history, and he said that while the original idea for this one was a book of funny photos, he and his co-author labored to include the good, the bad and ugly.