Members of the Grammy-winning rock band Portugal. The Man are stepping into a banned book controversy in their Alaska home town. After the school board at the Matanuska-Susitna Borough School District in Palmer voted 5-2 last week to remove five classics used for high school English elective courses including F. Scott Fitzgerald's “The Great Gatsby," “Joseph Heller's Catch-22” and Maya Angelou's “I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings,” the band announced it would buy the books for any student or parent who wanted them.
Paul Stein felt useless — stuck in his Brooklyn brownstone apartment, watching his neighbors suffer deprivations as COVID-19 swept the city. Then, on television, the retired public-sector lawyer and political activist saw people around the world rallying: “I saw people in France and Italy banging pots and pans out their windows, clapping and singing from balconies. I wanted to do this in my neighborhood. “ He knew what he had to do. He took out his accordion. And he played.
Decked out in full firefighting gear, Elielson Silva stands 150 feet above the ground atop a retractable ladder poking up from a red fire truck. His lofty perch is about as high as Rio de Janeiro's colossal Maracana soccer stadium behind him. Silva faces a row of apartment buildings filled with Brazilians sheltering from the new coronavirus and watching from their windows and balconies. He raises his silver trumpet to his lips and the notes soar toward his audience, helping extinguish the blues from being cooped up inside their homes.
John Prine, the ingenious singer-songwriter who explored the heartbreaks, indignities and absurdities of everyday life in "Angel from Montgomery," "Sam Stone," "Hello in There" and scores of other indelible tunes, died Tuesday at the age of 73. His family announced his death from complications from the coronavirus.
Ellis Marsalis Jr., jazz pianist, teacher and patriarch of a New Orleans musical clan that includes famed performer sons Wynton and Branford, has died after battling pneumonia brought on by the new coronavirus, one of his sons said late Wednesday. He was 85.
The words "I am truly sorry" have not been uttered often in the #MeToo era. So when soprano Luz del Alba Rubio woke up Tuesday to see an apology from opera superstar Placido Domingo, she was in shock. "I felt like we have conquered Goliath. Now we don't have to be scared to speak out," said Rubio, who stepped forward Tuesday to add her voice to the women accusing the legendary tenor of sexual harassment and abuse of power.
Some in the audience wore tuxedos and evening gowns, others wore jeans and sneakers. There was even a man wearing a black sleeveless shirt and blue suede cowboy boots. The Metropolitan Opera began regular Sunday-afternoon staged performances for the first time in its 136-year history with Puccini's "Turandot," an effort to boost ticket sales and revenue.