Arts & Culture | Texas Public Radio

Arts & Culture

Arts and culture news, criticism, and programming from TPR/NPR.

As an African-American, George Walker had no prospects for a career in 1940s America. But incredibly, by 1996 he would be awarded the Pulitzer Prize for music.

Walker was born in 1922 in Washington, D.C.  He began piano lessons at age five, and entered Oberlin at 14 and the Curtis Institute at 19, after meeting Rudolf Serkin, who took him as a student there. Walker completed a Doctorate at Eastman.  He would then continue to study in Europe with Nadia Boulanger.

David J. Dowling

As the holiday season winds down, another season important to movie lovers is shifting into high gear. Awards season has expanded from just the Oscar race to a dizzying parade of broadcasts and ceremonies, including the Golden Globes, the SAG Screen Actors Guild Awards, the Directors Guild Awards, and many other “kudocasts,” as the industry sometimes calls them.

 

Kino Lorber

It’s not the music of Rachmaninoff, but that of Sir Edward Elgar that informs the brief encounter depicted in "Mademoiselle Chambon."  The music, performed by the titular character in this Cesar-winning (Best Adapted Screenplay) film, appropriately communicates the longing for human connection and experience that draws Jean (Vince

©Disney. All rights reserved.

Whenever I’m asked to name my favorite Disney movie, I usually hesitate for a moment before answering “Fantasia.”  Not because my love for the film is any less than, say, Dumbo or Bambi, but because “Fantasia” is so strikingly different than any Disney film before or since, except for—you guessed it—"Fantasia 2000.”

“The Jazz Singer” may have brought sound to the movies in 1927, but it didn’t exactly bring them to life.  Cumbersome sound equipment ensured that talking pictures were also largely static in their staging and imagery until the early 1930s, when Busby Berkeley’s musicals broke artistic boundaries with their proto-psychedelic arrangements of chorus girls. Consequently, many of the silent pictures of the mid to late 1920s are more memorable than early experiments with sound. Two new releases this month highlight some of the best that silent comedy has to offer.

Über-Metropolis

Nov 9, 2010
Courtesy of Kino Lorber, Inc.

The story goes that Fritz Lang conceived of Metropolis on a visit to New York City in 1924.  Seeing the Woolworth Building, he instantly knew what the look and feel of his next film would be.  In truth, Lang had already been working on the scenario for Metropolis with his wife, Thea von Harbou.  But the towering skyscrapers and brilliant lights of Jazz Age NYC gave Lang a clarity of vision. 

'The Alamo' At 50

Oct 15, 2010
MGM

"The Alamo" is celebrating a milestone. Fifty years ago this month, John Wayne's version of Texas' struggle for independence made its way to the big screen.  "The Alamo" was nominated for seven Academy Awards, including Best Picture, and won one Oscar, for Best Sound.  To celebrate its 50th anniversary, the caretakers of the Alamo, the Daughters of the Republic of Texas, organized a special screening of the film at San Antonio's IMAX Rivercenter Theater on Friday, October 8.  

Courtesy of the Criterion Collection.

"The Red Shoes," the rapturous 1948 British film by Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger, is not just a great backstage film, it’s about the burning hunger that great artists have within them to create. In fact, "The Red Shoes" even goes as far as to suggest that art is something worth dying for.  In the freshly post-war England, this must have been a daring thematic choice.  After all, citizens for years had been dying for crown and country, and now, for dance?  But for the artists of "The Red Shoes," dance they must. 

John Clare

Enjoy two selections from YOSA on tour in China, from Hong Kong here is the Spring Festival Overture

And the combined orchestras of YOSA with the Hong Kong Youth Symphony in The Moldau; both are conducted by Troy Peters.

© 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment.

Are we wake-walking through our dreams, or sleep-walking through life? Or is it the reverse?

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