Fresh Air

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Terry Gross

Opening the window on contemporary arts and issues with guests from worlds as diverse as literature and economics.  

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12:35pm

Fri December 6, 2013
Television

Delightful 'Six By Sondheim' Leaves You Wanting Six More

Originally published on Fri December 6, 2013 1:06 pm

The life and work of composer and lyricist Stephen Sondheim is examined in Six by Sondheim, a documentary from James Lapine, who also directed several of Sondheim's shows.
Jerry Jackson HBO

On Monday, HBO presents the premiere of Six by Sondheim, a new TV special that's part biography, part music-appreciation lesson and part performance piece. It's all about the life and music and lyrics of Stephen Sondheim, in which he explains, among many other things, how and why he became a musical theater composer and lyricist, and the inspirations for some of his most familiar songs. If you're new to the works of Stephen Sondheim, this TV special should entice you. If you're already a fan, it should delight you.

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10:51am

Fri December 6, 2013
Theater

'On Sondheim': The Musical-Theater Legend At 80

Originally published on Fri December 6, 2013 1:05 pm

Sondheim, shown here in 1974, won the Pulitzer Prize in Drama for Sunday in the Park with George. He has also received eight Tony Awards, eight Grammy awards and a Kennedy Center Honor.
Hulton Archive Getty Images

This interview was originally broadcast on April 21, 2010.

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10:50am

Fri December 6, 2013
Movie Reviews

Great Soundtrack Aside, 'Inside Llewyn Davis' Hits A Sour Note

Originally published on Fri December 6, 2013 1:05 pm

In the Coen brothers' latest film, down and out Llewyn Davis (Oscar Isaac) is trying to make ends meet as a folk singer in New York in the early 1960s.
Alison Rosa Long Strange Trip/CBS Films

The films of Joel and Ethan Coen pose a challenge: How do we reconcile their wildly disparate tones? Consider O Brother, Where Art Thou?, a burlesque of Homer's Odyssey centering on three stumblebums — but with a soundtrack assembled by T Bone Burnett of heartfelt historical gospel and country music. Ditto The Ladykillers: venal idiot characters, soaring African-American spirituals. The ridiculous and the sublime sit side by side, with no spillover.

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12:56pm

Thu December 5, 2013
Fine Art

'Pearl Earring' Is The Crown Jewel Of The Frick's Dutch Exhibit

Originally published on Thu December 5, 2013 5:48 pm

Johannes Vermeer's Girl with a Pearl Earring is one of 15 17th century Dutch paintings on view at New York's Frick Collection through early 2014.
AFP Getty Images

Some years ago, I wrote a poem called "Why I Love Vermeer," which ends "I've never lived in a city without a Vermeer." I could say that until 1990, when Vermeer's exquisite painting The Concert was one of the masterpieces stolen from Boston's Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum. It's still missing.

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12:05pm

Thu December 5, 2013
Law

Beyond Good Cop/Bad Cop: A Look At Real-Life Interrogations

Originally published on Thu December 5, 2013 12:55 pm

A lot of what we think we know about interrogation tactics comes from television and movies. Above (from left), Robert Ryan, Robert Mitchum and Robert Young appear in a scene from the 1947 film Crossfire.
The Kobal Collection

We see a lot of police interrogation on TV, but how closely do those high-adrenaline scenes resemble the real thing? According to Douglas Starr, not much. In his new New Yorker article, "The Interview: Do Police Interrogation Techniques Produce False Confessions?", Starr examines the Reid technique, the style of interrogation most widely used by police forces in the U.S.

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