Arts

Arts and culture

Rick Bass was born in Fort Worth, Texas in 1958. His father was a geologist who passed on his passion to his son. Bass received a B.S. in petroleum geology at Utah State University in 1979, and then worked as a gas and oil geologist in Jackson, Mississippi. He started writing short stories during his lunch breaks.

He is the author of over twenty books. His first short story collection, The Watch, set in Texas, won the PEN/Nelson Algren Award, and his 2002 collection, The Hermit’s Story, was a Los Angeles Times Best Book of the Year. Bass’s stories have also been awarded the Pushcart Prize and the O. Henry Award and have been collected in The Best American Short Stories. His newest novel is called All The Land To Hold Us.

Bader Howar

Edan Lepucki is a graduate of Oberlin College and the University of Iowa Writers’ Workshop, and her short fiction has been published in Narrative Magazine, the Los Angeles Times Magazine, Meridian,  FiveChapters, and McSweeney’s, among others. She is a staff writer for The Millions, and teaches creative writing at the UCLA Extension Writers’ Program and for Writing Workshops Los Angeles, which she founded.   Her novel is called California.  www.edanlepucki.com.

 

Actor and director William H. Macy has just released his directorial debut, "Rudderless". He and his wife, actress Felicity Huffman, will be speaking & screening the film at Paepcke Auditorium on Saturday night as part of Aspen Film's summer season.

RUDDERLESS is a poignant musical drama about the power of a parent's love. Sam (Billy Crudup) is a former high-profile advertising executive whose life has been torn apart by the tragic death of his son. Off the grid, living on a docked sailboat, he drowns his pain in alcohol. When Sam discovers a box filled with his son's demo tapes and lyrics, his own child's musical talent is a revelation for him, a grieving father who felt he'd been absent from his son's life. Communing with his deceased son's dashed dreams, Sam learns each song and eventually musters the will to play one at a local bar. When Quentin, a young musician in the audience, is captivated by the song, the unlikely duo form a rock band that becomes surprisingly popular and changes both of their lives.

A searing performance from Billy Crudup leads an exemplary cast that includes Anton Yelchin as Quentin, plus Selena Gomez, Laurence Fishburne and Felicity Huffman. Casey Twenter and Jeff Robison's potent screenplay was the launching pad for Macy's auspicious debut as a feature film director.
 

Jennifer Schatten

Elizabeth Gilbert was born in Waterbury, Connecticut in 1969, and grew up on a small family Christmas tree farm. She attended New York University, where she studied political science by day and worked on her short stories by night. After college, she spent several years traveling around the country, working in bars, diners and ranches, collecting experiences to transform into fiction. Her books include Eat, Pray, Love, Pilgrims, Committed, The Last American Man and most recently The Signature of All Things. Elizabeth Gilbert lives in the small river town of Frenchtown, New Jersey, where she and her husband run a large and delightful imports store called Two Buttons. More at www.elizabethgilbert.com.

Two speakers from this year’s Aspen Ideas Fest, Janna Levin, an astrophysicist from Barnard College and Kay Hymowitz, the author of the bestseller,  "Manning Up".

aspenideas.org

First Draft - Jack Driscoll

Jun 23, 2014

Jack Driscoll is the author of four books of poems, two collections of short stories, and four novels. In addition, he is the recipient of numerous grants and awards, including the NEA Creative Writing Fellowship, the NEH Independent Study Grant, two Pushcart Prizes and Best American Short Story citations, the PEN/Nelson Algren Fiction Award, the Associated Writing Programs Short Fiction Award, and seven PEN Syndicated Project Short Fiction Awards.

His stories have been read frequently over NPR’s “The Sound of Writing,” and his work has appeared nationally in magazines, literary journals, and newspapers such as Chicago Tribune, Kansas City Star, Civilization, Poetry, The Georgia Review, The Southern Review, and Ploughshares.

His novel Lucky Man, Lucky Woman received the 1998 Pushcart Editors’ Book Award, the Barnes and Noble Discovery of Great New Writers Award, and the 1999 Independent Book Publishers Award for Fiction. Stardog, his third novel, appeared in 2000, and How Like an Angel, a University of Michigan Press Sweetwater release, appeared in May, 2005. His newest short story collection, The World of a Few Minutes Ago, was published by Wayne State University Press in 2012

Today on CrossCurrents, a speaker from this year's Ideas Fest, Danah Boyd.

Danah Boyd is a principal researcher at Microsoft Research; a research assistant professor in media, culture, and communication at New York University, and a Fellow at Harvard’s Berkman Center for Internet and Society

http://www.aspenideas.org/speaker/danah-boyd

Nina Subin

Meg Wolitzer's novels include The Interestings; The Uncoupling; The Ten-Year Nap; The Position; and The Wife. She is also the author of a novel for young readers, The Fingertips of Duncan Dorfman.  Wolitzer's short fiction has appeared in The Best American Short Stories and The Pushcart Prize.  www.megwolitzer.com

Huts for Vets presents "Make Sure it's Me", a play about veterans returning home after deployment, read by veterans from the Roaring Fork Valley. Guests are Paul Andersen, Dr. Jerry Alpern and Adam McCabe from Huts for Vets.

And David Ledingham, Donald Sage Mackay and Adrianna Thompson from the Aspen Fringe Festival on this year's lineup, including the Morales Dance Company, "Venus in Fur" and a play workshop on "The Last Outlaw" written by Mackay.

Welcome to Audio Canvas, a weekly guided tour of the Anderson Ranch Arts Center in Snowmass Village, Colorado. I'll take you behind the scenes of the center, where they are in high gear with students, local staff, visiting faculty, and world-renowned artists. Nancy Wilhelms is the Executive Director of Anderson Ranch, and sits down to discuss the lectures, symposiums, events, and programs happening at the ranch this summer.

Andre Dubus III is the author of six books: The Cage Keeper and Other Stories, Bluesman, and the New York Times bestsellers, House of Sand and Fog, The Garden of Last Days (soon to be a major motion picture) and his memoir, Townie, a #4 New York Times bestseller and a New York Times "Editors Choice". His work has been included in The Best American Essays of 1994 and The Best Spiritual Writing of 1999, and his novel, House of Sand and Fog was a finalist for the National Book Award, a #1 New York Times Bestseller, and was made into an Academy Award-nominated film starring Ben Kingsley and Jennifer Connelly. His new book, Dirty Love, was published in the fall of 2013 and has been listed as a New York Times “Notable Book”, a New York Times Editors’ Choice”, a 2013 “Notable Fiction” choice from The Washington Post, and a Kirkus “Starred Best Book of 2013”.

Mr. Dubus has been awarded a Guggenheim Fellowship, The National Magazine Award for Fiction, Two Pushcart Prizes, and he is a 2012 recipient of an American Academy of Arts and Letters Award in Literature. His books are published in over twenty-five languages, and he teaches full-time at the University of Massachusetts Lowell. He lives in Massachusetts with his wife, Fontaine, a modern dancer, and their three children. www.andredubus.com.

Aspen Native Returns with "Beautiful" Film

Jun 5, 2014

After a series of festival screenings for her new film, Aspen native Naomi McDougall Jones has returned home to screen her new project “Imagine I’m Beautiful” to a hometown audience on Saturday at the Wheeler Opera House. Aspen Public Radio’s Rob St. Mary spoke to McDougall Jones about the film recently. She says she wanted to bring the film to Aspen at her earliest opportunity not only because she’s from here, but because the community helped to make the film possible. 

The Wyly Young Artists Mentorship Program with internationally renowned artist Nancy Lovendahl and Basalt High School junior Michelle Lehman. 

More at wylyarts.org

Marion Ettlinger

Melissa Bank is the author of the bestseller The Girls’ Guide to Hunting and Fishing and The Wonderspot. She won the 1993 Nelson Algren Award for short fiction. She has published stories in the Chicago Tribune, Zoetrope, The North American Review, Other Voices, and Ascent. Her work has also been heard on Selected Shorts” on National Public Radio. She holds an MFA from Cornell University and divides her time between New York City and East Hampton.

Bruce Machart's debut collection of stories, Men in the Making, follows the widely acclaimed first novel, The Wake of Forgiveness, which was published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt in the fall of 2010. Winner of the Texas Institute of Letters Steven Turner Prize for fiction, the Mountains and Plains Independent Booksellers Association's Reading the West Prize, the novel was named a Barnes and Noble "Discover Great New Writers" selection and a New York Times Book Review "Editors' Choice." Chosen as a Top Ten title for 2010 by Barnes and Noble, Amazon.com, The Cleveland Plain Dealer, and The Wall Street Journal, the novel was a finalist for the American Booksellers Association's Indie's Choice award and the PEN/USA Literary Prize. The recipient of numerous awards and fellowships, Machart graduated from the MFA program at The Ohio State University in 1999. He is currently Assistant Professor of English at Bridgewater State University. He lives in Hamilton, Massachusetts. www.brucemachart.com.

More on First Draft on Aspen Public Radio: aspenpublicradio.org/programs/first-draft

From the archives, two speakers from Aspen Ideas Fest, 2011, James Fallows, national correspondent from the Atlantic and Nancy Aossey, CEO and President of International Medical Corps.

aspenideas.org

Deborah Treisman

John Freeman is a writer and literary critic. He has written author profiles and book reviews for more than two hundred newspapers worldwide, was the onetime president of the National Book Critics Circle, and was the editor of Granta. His new book called How to Read a Novelist, includes 55 profiles of some of the very best novelists of our time.

Jackie Merrill and Catherine Johnson are from Spellbinders – a non-profit dedicated to restoring the art of oral storytelling to connect elders to youth, weaving together the wisdom of diverse cultures throughout time.

http://www.spellbinders.org/

Michael Lionstar

Jenny Offill is the author of three children’s books and co-editor of two non-fiction anthologies. Her first novel Last Things (1999) was a New York Times Notable book and a finalist for the L.A Times First Book Award. Her second novel is called Dept. of Speculation. She teaches in the MFA programs at Brooklyn College, Columbia University and Queens University.

Interview: Alan Fletcher

May 7, 2014
Roger Adams

  When the Aspen Music Festival and School opens for the summer on June 18th it will be the start of the 66th season of classical concerts and performances.  Year over year, the festival has featured well-known conductors, composers and musicians and paired many of them with students.  Some of those students have gone on to become world renown and then return to Aspen for the summer to teach the next generation.  For audiences the festival offers hundreds of performances.  Alan Fletcher is the president and CEO of the Aspen Music Festival and School he spoke about the summer’s events with A

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