culture

In romance, characters often face obstacles that are larger than life — pirates, spies, secret plots, paranormal forces. And sometimes our heroines grapple with issues closer to reality, like how to have both a satisfying career and a deeply satisfying love life. Romance heroines — they're just like us! These three novels remind us that it's worth fighting for both a romantic and professional happy ever after.

From the outside, Melania Trump looks like a woman in over her tastefully balayaged head. At public events, she rarely speaks, but assumes the rictus smolder — like a model who has just spotted a lion over the photographer's shoulder — that inspired a thousand #freemelania signs.

The shutdown due to the coronavirus pandemic hit musicians hard, with concert halls and rehearsal spaces shuttered and silent. But a new music initiative from the Library of Congress embraces the constraints of COVID-19. The series is a collection of 10 videos of 10 different original compositions that will premiere online starting Monday, June 15. It's called the Boccaccio Project.

As of Friday, 15 of the top 20 bestselling books on Amazon were about race or racism. Earlier this week, Code Switch was number one on Apple Podcasts — which, as host Gene Demby said, is "dope," but unfortunately occurred under "soul-crushing circumstances." And The Help is trending on Netflix (ahem, a film that drew immediate ire upon release).

Wanda Tima

The butt of anti-immigrant jokes. Fistfights after school. Inner-shame in public spaces. Haitian-Americans across social media say it wasn’t always cool to be Haitian. 

Behold Miami-Dade's Art In Public Places, One Of The Largest Public Collections In U.S.

Apr 30, 2020

Miami has become known as a global capital for the visual arts – thanks to the artists who make the city home, and aided internationally by the attention of the annual Miami Art Week crowds each December.

Fewer know, however, that Miami-Dade County is also home to one of the largest public art collections in the United States.

Miami Dance Community's Contagion-Induced, Existential Crisis

Apr 23, 2020
Courtesy of Yanni de Melo

When the rapid spread of COVID-19 vacated performance halls, it attacked Miami’s economic ecosystem of artistic activity. Within the dance community, as with many others, performers and organizations saw anticipated revenues evaporate in a matter of hours – and this in an industry dominated by 1099s.

In writing his new book, David Daley was looking to shake off a cynicism that had been following him around for years.

The former editor-in-chief of Salon gained attention in 2016, as the man who chronicled a Republican gerrymandering machine.

South Florida’s Push For Theater Art And Relief Goes on

Apr 16, 2020
Florida International University

It’s mid-April, a month into isolating at home, and South Florida’s theater artists and companies are busily engaged in virtual programming, classes and relief efforts. Here’s a roundup of initiatives, some new, others ongoing.

FAU THEATRE LAB

Theatre Lab’s Online Original Monologue Festival (#OOMF) in March was a hit, so now the Florida Atlantic University company is planning a slightly different April edition of its virtual effort to help the region’s theater artists.

How South Florida Musicians Are Getting By During The Coronavirus Crisis

Apr 9, 2020
Photo courtesy of @danny_beard

“Please don’t stop the music,” implores the chart-topping, Grammy-nominated, 2007 dance-pop hit by Rihanna.

Don’t worry, South Florida, our local musicians have no intention of doing so.

Julia Alvarez has written what she calls her first novel as "an elder."

"It took a while to sort of process this stage of life that I'm in," she says. "And you know, what are the stories that I can tell now, from the hindsight and the insights that I've gained that is different. And you have to, you know, learn that."

The author of beloved and bestselling novels for adults and children, including How the García Girls Lost Their Accents and In the Time of the Butterflies, has brought out her first novel for adults in a decade and a half.

Back in January, Laura Gao, a 23-year-old product developer for Twitter living in San Francisco, was preparing to visit her relatives in Wuhan, China. The trip was to celebrate her grandmother's 80th birthday.

But in the days leading up to her flight, Gao's relatives told her to cancel her trip. The coronavirus was spreading throughout the city.

Gao, a native of Wuhan, stayed in San Francisco and on January 23, the day after her flight would have landed, the city went on lockdown. If she'd taken her trip, Gao thinks she'd still be in Wuhan today.

Alexia Fodere / Miami Herald

The coronavirus pandemic has forced closures of restaurants, bars, nightclubs, concert halls and theaters -- the places that would've taken up our weekends.

Country music icon Kenny Rogers, whose hits included "Lucille," "Lady" and "The Gambler," died late Friday at his home in Sandy Springs, Ga., his family said in a statement. He was 81.

The Houston-born country star had 20 No.-1 hits and three Grammys and performed for some 60 years before retiring from touring in 2017 at age 79, according to the Associated Press.

Rogers didn't write most of his hits and often said he didn't consider himself much of a songwriter. But he told NPR in 2012 that he had a knack for picking songs that could draw in the listener.

Every year, NPR's Stephen Thompson compiles The Austin 100 — a playlist of his favorite artist discoveries ahead of the SXSW Music Festival. Though this year's festival was canceled due to concerns about the coronavirus, The Austin 100 will still publish on Monday, the day the music performances were supposed to begin. NPR's Renee Montagne spoke to Stephen Thompson about a few of the artists featured in this year's roundup.

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