Arts and culture

Andy Lee

Friday on "City Lights with Lois Reitzes":

Fred Hayes / Copyright 2016 Crown Media United States LLC

Thursday on "City Lights with Lois Reitzes":

Eric Charbonneau / Invision for Twentieth Century Fox/AP Images

Wednesday on "City Lights with Lois Reitzes":

Al Such / WABE

About 37 million Americans practice yoga, and some people in Atlanta are starting to do it in unexpected places. They do it on paddle boards out on Stone Mountain Lake, at area malls and at a park just off the BeltLine. WABE stopped by one yoga class to learn why hundreds of people there have left the gym behind.

Yoga As Community

The class is at a field near the Old Fourth Ward Skate Park. There, hundreds of people cram together yoga mats and move together like synchronized swimmers.   

Meg Chase

Tuesday on "City Lights with Lois Reitzes":

Emily Shur

You probably know him as the carnivorous, mustachioed Ron Swanson of the sitcom "Parks and Recreation," and while the actor Nick Offerman and his fictional character may be different in many ways, they both share a love of fine woodworking.

Offerman is in Atlanta this week touring for his new book, "Good Clean Fun: Misadventures in Sawdust at Offerman Woodshop." It is both a beautifully illustrated how-to guide to some of the woodshop's favorite projects, and an ode to the craft and the people who practice it. 

City Lights: Food, Fun And More With Alton Brown

Oct 17, 2016
Al Such / WABE

Monday on "City Lights with Lois Reitzes":

David Pedde

Iconic public radio programs are synonymous with their hosts. When you hear "Fresh Air," you think "Terry Gross"; "This American Life" and Ira Glass; "A Prairie Home Companion" and Garrison Keillor.

Well actually, it's now "A Prairie Home Companion" with Chris Thile. Longtime fans of “Prairie Home” recognize Thile as a frequent guest artist as well as a rare substitute host in recent seasons. Outside of “Prairie Home,” Thile is known for his cross-genre mandolin musicianship in bands like Nickel Creek and Punch Brothers.

Sharon Schuster

Friday on "City Lights with Lois Reitzes":

Atlanta Poet Pens Memoir About Bank-Robbing Dad

Oct 14, 2016
Stephanie Dowda

Molly Brodak is a poet based in Atlanta, and her latest literary work is a memoir about her dad.

It's fittingly called "Bandit.” In 1994, her dad went on a bank-robbing spree that landed him in prison. Once out, he landed himself back in prison after robbing more banks.

In "Bandit," Brodak digests her own feelings about her dad and attempts to understand him: both as a boy born in a refugee camp for survivors of the Holocaust, who grew up in poverty in the United States and served in Vietnam, and also as a sociopathic adult with a gambling addiction.


Wednesday on "City Lights with Lois Reitzes":

Al Such / WABE

Thursday on "City Lights with Lois Reitzes":

Jacquelyn Martin / Associated Press

The Atlanta theater community has proved itself to be committed to the cause of social justice for years, and next week, it joins theaters around the country in producing not one, but 75 plays inspired by the Black Lives Matter movement.

Chalane Bauzo

For queer and gender nonconforming people, language is not always a best friend. There are few words for those who do not identify in the strict gender norms of male or female.  

For non-binary Latin Americans, instead of identifying as Latina or Latino, they go by Latinx.

“Latinx is a gender nonconforming word that is inclusive to all people who are from Latin America or Central America,” said Josephine Figueroa, one of the founders of a new dance party in town celebrating that identity called “La Choloteca: Ley De Latinx.”

Courtesy of Juan Ramirez

On Monday, the United States celebrated Columbus Day, but “celebrated” is much too strong a word. Many have opted to celebrate Indigenous People’s Day instead of memorializing a figure they consider to have been a brutal colonialist.

And in many Spanish-speaking countries and communities, instead of Columbus Day, countries celebrate "Día de la Raza,” or the Day of the Race.

Myke Johns / WABE

Putting furniture on the curb — most of us have seen it, some of us have done it, and a few of us may have even picked up a well-worn coffee table or desk chair off the side of the road. Atlanta artist Lauren Michelle Peterson is exploring these objects left on the sidewalk in a solo show at the MINT Gallery, titled "on Going."

Courtesy of the Emerson String Quartet

Tuesday evening at sundown marks the beginning of Yom Kippur, which means the “Day of Atonement.” It’s considered the holiest day of the Jewish calendar. Because it is a solemn observance, there is a prescribed time to reflect upon life, and to honor the memory of loved ones. 


Tuesday on "City Lights with Lois Reitzes":

Courtesy of the Mayor's Office of Cultural Affairs

The city of Atlanta Mayor’s Office of Cultural Affairs has a vision to enhance quality of life through arts and culture. One of its major yearly event puts the arts on very public display: ELEVATE, Atlanta’s public art festival since 2011.

City Lights: Iran Beyond Politics; ELEVATE; And More

Oct 10, 2016
Ashin Danili Zakarian

Monday on "City Lights with Lois Reitzes":

1:41: ELEVATE public art festival kicks off this Thursday. The Atlanta Office of Cultural Affairs' art program manager Dorian McDuffie and curator Allie Bashuk talk about this year’s festival and the theme "Microcosm";

Photography Curator Shows Iran Beyond Its Politics

Oct 10, 2016
Virginia Abbott

When we think of Iran today, we might think about the nuclear deal or hostage crisis. We think less of its poetry, its art and its breathtaking landscapes.

MaryAm Ghadiri is Iranian. She arrived in the United States a few years ago to pursue a masters' at Purdue University in Indiana. She discovered that when she introduced herself as Iranian, more often than not, people were totally ignorance of her country beyond its politics.

Ghadiri attributed that to media.

Kate Sweeney / WABE

Hundreds of programmers descended on Atlanta last weekend for the Southern Interactive Entertainment and Games Expo. Gaming is a $23 billion industry where women are still in the minority, even though they make up half of the nation's video gamers.

The Dear Games project is hoping to move the needle on this.

Exhibit A?

Lisa Marie Pane / Associated Press

At noon this Sunday, Atlanta’s streets will be filled with rainbow-colored celebration. It’s the Atlanta Pride Parade.

Dave Hayward was part of the first permitted Pride Parade in Atlanta in 1972. Young Atlantans had tried to have a parade the year before, but the city of Atlanta refused to grant them permits.

“So back in 1971, 125 people had to march on the sidewalks and stop at every traffic light,” said Hayward. “And now, Pride, it completely blows my mind. Our beginnings couldn’t have possibly been any more humble.”

Alison Guillory / WABE

Friday on "City Lights with Lois Reitzes":

Charlie McCullers

On any given night in Atlanta, there are around 900 homeless LGBTQ youth on the streets. That’s according to Lost-n-Found Youth, a local nonprofit helping these homeless youth with a mission to stabilize their lives, find permanent housing and stable employment.

Natalie Maynor / Wikimedia

Thursday on "City Lights with Lois Reitzes":

Matt Terrell / WABE

As the current presidential election barrels loudly toward November, and rhetoric … or at least the arguments people are having on Facebook … becomes more divisive, the comedians at Dad’s Garage are here to provide some levity as they comment on current events. Their new sketch comedy show is called “Democracy Achieved: An Ode to the Perfection of American Politics,” and takes aim at both sides of the aisle.

Al Such / WABE

In his recent article for ArtsATL, architect Michael Kahn wrote that “Atlanta is a city that is often accused of forgetting its past. Indeed, as progress plows ahead and the heart of the city bustles with new development, older buildings are often cast aside as worthless, either replaced by or surrounded by monotonous, anonymous gleaming glass towers.”

AP Photo

In his latest travels around the South, travel contributor Kevin Benefield let the region’s literary elite be his guide. In the first of his three-part series around the “Literary South” on "City Lights," Benefield tours Mississippi by way of William Faulkner, Eudora Welty and Tennessee Williams.

“Light and shadow play along the avenue as you approach the ghostly-white 1844 primitive Greek revival house,” Benefield says, describing William Faulkner’s home from 1930 until 1962 in Oxford.

Storytellers Share LGBTQ Experiences At Out/Spoken

Oct 5, 2016
Chrisoula Baikos

Eight storytellers will take the stage at Emory University Thursday night to tell true stories about their LGBTQ experiences.

The event, “Out/Spoken: Queer, Questioning, Bold, and Proud,” is the result of a partnership between the Human Rights Campaign, an LGBTQ advocacy group, and the DC-based nonprofit Story District.

Four of the storytellers are from Atlanta, one of whom is Ames Simmons. Simmons is a health care attorney and a volunteer with the Human Rights Campaign. He will be talking about his experiences as a queer transgender man.