Notes from New Orleans
5:00 am
Thu May 22, 2014

Lessons From Their Lives: Iconic Jeweler Mignon Faget

Mignon Faget, right, credits her year in Paris as a young woman to be one of the most formative experiences of her life.
Credit Tulane Public Relations

What makes an artist into an entrepreneur? For jewelry designer Mignon Faget, it was less the kindness of strangers and more the assistance of friends. Mignon, now in her 81st year, still lives in the house she grew up in along Bayou St. John and is the subject of this week’s Notes from New Orleans.

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Notes from New Orleans
8:40 am
Mon May 19, 2014

Tulane Goes Down To The River To Study

Matthew Chatfield is Project Coordinator for Tulane's new riverfront campus.

It wasn’t that long ago that the idea surfaced to use the power of the Mississippi River as a source for energy. But it turns out that turbines placed near New Orleans weren’t going to be that effective after all. So some smart folks at Tulane University have come up with other ideas.

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5:38 am
Mon May 5, 2014

A Jazz Fest Post-Mortem

Jazz Fest 2014.
Credit Laine Kaplan-Levenson / WWNO


The New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival is looking fat and happy. Yep, as it turns 45, it’s definitely getting that middle-age spread.

But is it aging well? As usual, Jazz Fest fans are wondering if the event is getting too big? Too expensive? Too crowded? Does it even have enough jazz?

And, most importantly, is it for us or for them?

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Notes From New Orleans
5:00 am
Thu May 1, 2014

Art At The Intersection: Public Paintings Are Thanks To Local Nonprofit

Genie Tidy, at far left, has helped fund more than 30 public art paintings throughout New Orleans. Her nonprofit, Community Visions Unlimited, turns ordinary objects like automatic traffic light controllers into art.
Credit Genie Tidy

New Orleanians have always found ways to transform the mundane into something a little more festive and lively. Atop the list of monotonous things in this world — sitting in traffic. Next time you’re stopped at a traffic light, look right and look left because you might see something.

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5:19 am
Mon April 28, 2014

Actor Yolonda Ross Talks 'Go For Sisters' And 'Treme'

Yolonda Ross as Fontaine in the John Sayles film Go For Sisters.
Credit Kevin Long

Along with Jazz Fest comes the Sync Up Conference, several days of workshops and discussions on the business of entertainment, at New Orleans Museum of Art.

This year’s Sync Up Cinema event features John Sayles newest film, Go For Sisters, screening tomorrow afternoon. It stars actor Yolanda Ross, who also appeared in HBO's Treme. She started with how she got the role in John Sayles' new movie.

Laine Kaplan-Levenson: What was your connection to John Sayles before this film?

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Notes from New Orleans
5:00 am
Thu April 24, 2014

So Much Fun You'll Want To Go Back To School: Circus Arts At The International School Of Louisiana

Meret Riyhner, center, teaches children myriad acts for circus performance, including acrobatics.
Credit Thomas Walsh

It’s impossible to wager how many angry children have told their parents they’re running away to join the circus. Switzerland-native Meret Riyhner never had such a violent outburst with her parents, but she ended up in the circus anyway. Now, she’s the circus arts teacher at the International School of Louisiana located on Camp Street, and the subject of this week’s Notes from New Orleans.

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5:15 am
Mon April 21, 2014

Jazz In The Park Adds Something For (Congo) Kids

This year's lineup at Jazz in the Park.
Credit People United for Armstrong Park

When Jazz in the Park gets underway this Thursday afternoon at Congo Square, the age span may skew a little younger than usual. For the first time, the weekly jazz concert series will feature an additional tier of programming aimed at local youngsters. It’s called Congo Kids.

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Notes from New Orleans
5:00 am
Thu April 17, 2014

Musical Architecture In New Orleans: The Return Of The Music Box

Children bang on cans that will be used in Dawn Dedeaux's "Can You Hear Me House." Their percussion performances and voices are recorded and incorporated into the final installation.
Credit Thomas Walsh

In 2011, a group of more than 25 artists created the Music Box, a house made of found objects designed as a laboratory for musical expression. By the time it closed in Spring 2012, it had been visited by more than 15,000 people.

On this week’s Notes from New Orleans, Sharon Litwin talks with artist Dawn Dedeaux about the return of the Music Box project.

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Music Features
11:09 am
Wed April 16, 2014

Already Missing French Quarter Fest? Here's A Mid-Week Playlist

Irvin Mayfield at French Quarter Fest this past Saturday.
Credit Ian Cook

The 2014 French Quarter Festival took place on a beautiful weekend... But it's been all rain and cold and work and traffic ever since.

Maybe you missed Gal Holiday belt out "That's How I Ride" because you were waiting in line for crawfish bread. Maybe you didn't catch Little Freddie King bang out "Cleo's Back" because you lost track of the time on the river, or ran to Gene's to get a daiquiri. Maybe you missed Dr. John because there were too many people! Or maybe you caught every act you intended to see, and now are twitching from FQF withdrawals (or shivering in the chill).

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5:11 am
Mon April 14, 2014

Sarah Vowell Riffs On Satchmo, 'The Incredibles' And Andrew Jackson

Sarah Vowell signing books after a lecture at Lamar Univ. in Beaumont, Texas
Credit Loren-zo / wikimedia commons

Noted writer, historian and former This American Life contributor Sarah Vowell will be in town to speak at Tulane’s Freeman Auditorium on Wednesday, April 16. And while she’s in town, the author of books like The Wordy Shipmates, Assassination Vacation and Unfamiliar Fishes will likely pay a visit to the New Orleans Center for the Creative Arts (NOCCA). She might also check out some of Louis Armstrong’s old haunts. 

But don’t count on Vowell to spend any time in Jackson Square.

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