Today, we welcome Quraysh Ali Lansana back to StudioTulsa. Lansana was born Ron Myles in Enid, Oklahoma, and originally worked in broadcast journalism here in our state before studying poetry and literature in New York and Chicago. He's written several books of poetry, edited or co-edited several anthologies, and works as an Associate Professor of English and Creative Writing at Chicago State University. He also teaches at writing workshops and literary events all over the country.
On today's show, we speak with John Wooley, host of the popular "Swing on This" program here on Public Radio 89.5, which airs every Saturday night at 7pm. Wooley is also a prolific and longtime writer/critic/advocate/fanboy concerning many various facets of American pop culture: horror movies, Western Swing music, comic books, pulp fiction, Oklahoma music and filmmaking, etc.
On today's show, we speak by phone with Dav Pilkey, the popular children's book author and illustrator who's probably best known for his "Captain Underpants" series of books. (There are ten books in this series --- Pilkey's now working on the 11th --- as well as a few different spin-off series.) Pilkey tells us about how his career got started, when the "Captain Underpants" character was actually born, and where some of his recurring ideas and themes as a writer and illustrator come from.
Moviegoers, rejoice! The Circle Cinema is turning eighty-five! The theatre opened on July 15, 1928, with a showing of "Across the Atlantic," starring Monte Blue --- in this picture, according to advertisements from the period, Blue "flies to France...and...finds romance." The Circle is Tulsa's only remaining historical movie theatre (and the only theatre in town built before the 1960s); it's listed with the Oklahoma Historical Preservation Office and on the National Register of Historic Places.
Our guest on this installment of StudioTulsa is Jonathan Rossetti, a young actor/writer/director who grew up in Tulsa and is now based in Los Angeles. Rossetti joins us by phone from Oklahoma City, where his newly completed indie film, "Home, James," will have its public debut tomorrow, Saturday the 8th, at 2pm at the Harkins Bricktown Cinema 2. "Home, James," which Rossetti directed, co-wrote, and stars in, is appearing as part of OKC's annual deadCenter Film Festival.
Move over, Oscar; your uber-hyped, high-octane night of movie-making awards and accolades is now done with. This evening, Monday the 25th, at 7pm here on the University of Tulsa campus --- in the Gussman Concert Hall of the Lorton Performance Center --- the TU Film Studies Department will present its Fifth Annual Spring Film Festival, which is free to the public. This will be a juried festival, wherein prizes will be awarded after the screenings for Best Film, Runner-Up, Best Original Score, and Audience Choice. Our guest on this edition of StudioTulsa is Prof.
Our guest on this edition of ST is Ken Busby, the Executive Director and CEO of the Arts & Humanities Council of Tulsa (AHCT), which recently celebrated its 50th anniversary. As everyone who cares about the arts (and the ongoing presence of the arts) in this city knows already, the AHCT has been enriching the cultural life of our community ever since it began in 1961. And now, the ACHT is nearing the completion of its largest initiative ever, the new 42,000-square-foot Arts & Humanities Council of Tulsa Hardesty Arts Center (or "AHHA"), which will open in the fall of this year.
On today's show, we speak with the gifted Alaskan writer Eowyn Ivey, whose first novel, "The Snow Child" (Reagan Arthur Books), appeared earlier this year to international acclaim. (And yes, in case you're wondering, Eowyn's mother did name her after a character in Tolkien's "Lord of the Rings.") As the following rave review from a critic at Amazon.com has noted: "In her haunting, evocative debut, Eowyn Ivey stakes her claim on a Russian fairy tale, daring the reader --- and the characters --- to be lulled into thinking they know the ending.
[Aired on Monday, February 27th.] On today's show, we speak with Kelly Kurt, a former AP reporter and freelance writer here in Tulsa whose article, "Death's Yellow Door," is the cover story in the current issue of This Land.