WNPR

Arts and Culture

Chion Wolf / WNPR

This hour, we rebroadcast our audio tributes to the inspiring twentieth-century women -- the so-called "motor girls" and "Kalamazoo gals" -- who helped shape American history and American industry. 

Updated at 2:25 p.m. ET

Chris Cornell, the unmistakable voice and frontman of the bands Soundgarden and Audioslave, died overnight in Detroit at the age of 52. He was discovered just past midnight at the MGM Grand Detroit, according to police.

The office of the Wayne County Medical Examiner on Thursday determined the cause of his death to be suicide by hanging, noting that a full autopsy has yet to be completed.

A 101-year-old man has set a world record for oldest skydiver, according to the British company Skydive Buzz.

Bryson William Verdun Hayes, known as Verdun, made a tandem jump at the age of 101 years and 38 days, the company says.

Joanne C Sullivan/flickr creative commons

At the end of June, 26 Catholic churches in the state are set to close. Some will be sold, while others could be converted to youth centers, homeless shelters, or other types of facilities. In addition, 59 churches will merge with others as part of a restructuring plan recently announced by the Hartford Archdiocese.

Jon Kalish / New England News Collaborative

There's a thriving scene on YouTube where woodworkers, metalworkers and other "makers" provide a step-by-step guide to their process.

In Waterford, Maine a maker named Gardner Waldeier -- who calls himself “Bus Huxley” -- has been entertaining viewers with equal portions of Yankee ingenuity and video wizardry.

Marvel

Look. I don't like Guardians of the Galaxy, okay? I get it. I'm the only nerd on the face of the planet who isn't charmed by these movies. I know I have a cold stone where my heart should be. I understand that I'm totally devoid of a soul. It's fine. I've come to terms with it. You still get to love these movies. The Nose still gets to love these movies. And The Nose does love these movies.

Jean-Pierre Dalbéra / Creative Commons

Chartwell Dutiro is a Zimbabwe native and leading authority on the mbira tradition. He is also an experienced collaborator. This hour, we hear about his recent partnership with Timbila -- a band co-founded by Afropop Worldwide producer Banning Eyre. 

T. Charles Erickson

A new musical is running at the Long Wharf Theatre in New Haven called "The Most Beautiful Room in New York." The book and lyrics are written by Adam Gopnik, staff writer for The New Yorker, with music by composer David Shire.

The iconic cover art of Radiohead’s album OK Computer shows a heavily distorted picture of an anonymous highway interchange. The band has never said where the picture came from. Now some internet sleuths think they’ve found it – in Hartford, Connecticut.

PEN American Center / Wiki Commons

The Most Beautiful Room in New York is a new play by The New Yorker essayist Adam Gopnik. It's about home and food and family, and is influenced by Gopnik's five years as a Paris correspondent discovering the meaning of food in his own life.

Storytelling is built into cultures around the world. It’s a way of socializing, passing down family history, and for people of different cultures stories can reveal common ground.

Finding that common ground is what the International Institute of New England, a refugee resettlement agency operating in Massachusetts and New Hampshire, hopes to accomplish with “Suitcase Stories,” a new traveling series of live storytelling performances.

The Power Of A Story

Hulu

Margaret Atwood started writing her classic dystopian novel The Handmaid's Tale in 1984. She set it in an imagined future America where the toxic environment has limited human fertility, a theocratic dictatorship has taken control, and women have been stripped of their rights. Atwood said the novel isn't a prediction, but the internet thinks Hulu's new TV version is.

Frank C. Muller / Creative Commons

In the 1800s, Connecticut peddlers would travel south to peddle goods made in small factories around the state. The best way to increase their profit margin was to slip a few pieces of prized nutmeg -- and a few fake wooden ones to match -- in their bag. It didn't take long to expose the fraud, earning us the nickname of the Nutmeg State, known by all as clever, if ethically challenged, people. 

Ryan Caron King / WNPR

Of the 530 refugees who arrived in the New Haven region last year, more than 270 were children. Many are nearing the end of their first year in a U.S. school.  A local arts organization has partnered with the region’s resettlement agency to create a special afterschool violin program for the young refugees.

Diane Orson / WNPR

Remember when video stores seemed as ubiquitous as the corner grocery store? Today, few have been able to survive the onslaught of Netflix and online streaming.

Pages