Arts & Entertainment

Visiting Ilya Kaminsky reads original poetry

April 11, 2019

Humanities students at Hopkins are used to not getting the same opportunities as their STEM counterparts. Friendly fire proved just as fatal, however, when faculty members in the Writing Seminars started closing the door on students attempting to enter ...

The Barnstormers put on a production of Cabaret for their 100th Anniversary Spring Musical.

Berlin comes to Baltimore in Barnstormers' Cabaret

April 11, 2019

The Barnstormers finished their opening weekend of their 100th anniversary spring musical, Cabaret, in Swirnow Theater. Directed by Max Hunter, the artistic director of The Bridge Production Group, and produced by senior Julia Zimmerman, the show centers around a Berlin cabaret called the Kit Kat Klub and the lives of those involved in it. 

Red Emma's hosts presentation of World War 3 Illustrated

April 3, 2019

Red Emma’s hosted a multimedia presentation of the latest issue of World War 3 Illustrated, a left-wing political comic magazine, on Friday, March 29. This issue, “Now is the Time of Monsters,” focuses on the rise of capitalism and fascism. And though the theme may be broad, each featured artist hones in on one specific evil in the world, from Mark Zuckerberg to forced evictions in Detroit. 

Courtesy of Emily McDonald
Red Emma's hosted authors from magazine World War 3 Illustrated.

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A conversation with Baltimore musician Cris Jacobs

April 8, 2019

Ask Baltimore musician Cris Jacobs if he has a favorite song from his most recent album, Color Where You Are, and he’s unable to give a direct answer.  “I can’t really say that I do,” he said. “Different songs have different emotional levels and different purposes.”

Throat Culture puts on whirlwind 24-hour show

April 4, 2019

Throat Culture, the only sketch comedy troupe on campus, performed their 24-hour glow show in Arellano Theater on Saturday night, offering audience members not only humor and talent, but also free candy and glow sticks.

Courtesy of Throat Culture

Members of Throat Culture perform in the 24-hour show on Saturday.

Three Hopkins alumnae return for reading series

April 4, 2019

It’s sometimes hard to feel successful at Hopkins, or for that matter, to feel that you will ever be successful. Assignments come and go, and you complete them with varying degrees of competency and effort invested in each. You’re supposed to be learning, but often you feel like you’re treading water. Even if you do learn something, and can recognize and feel fulfilled by that fact, where does that leave you? 

Peabody Wind Ensemble impresses audiences at latest concert

April 3, 2019

Compared to ensembles like the full symphony orchestra and string quartet, the wind ensemble seems to be a less written-for group. Exceptions may include instances in which programs present notable pieces like Holst’s “First Suite” and “Second Suite” or Samuel Barber’s much-loved “Commando March,” but for all their merits, performances of these works remain infrequent. 

Public Domain
Peabody Wind Ensemble showed off their musical flexibility on Saturday.

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Michael Keaton plays the villainous businessman in Disney’s Dumbo.

Dumbo fails to live up to its high expectations

April 4, 2019

For the life of me, I cannot figure out why Disney decided to add Dumbo to its list of live-action adaptations. It’s easy to understand why they remade Cinderella and Beauty and the Beast; the films are so deeply ingrained in our cultural childhood that it is difficult to imagine a world in which the remakes weren’t successful. Dumbo, on the other hand, is nowhere near as popular a character, and his story seems like it wouldn’t translate very well to a more realistic film.

Earl Sweatshirt performs a lively set at the Baltimore Soundstage

April 3, 2019

Concerts where the artist has to ask the audience to calm down are rare, to say the least. For me, Earl Sweatshirt’s concert on his tour Thebe Kgositsile presents: Fire it Up! A Tour Starring Earl Sweatshirt & Friends at Baltimore Soundstage on Thursday, March 28 was the first of its kind. Even though the mosh trampled me in one of its earliest waves and probably scarred me for life (no, I’m definitely not mad at all), the rhythmic energy that night was nothing short of primal — a wonder to witness.

Frank Morales/CC BY-SA 4.0
Earl Sweatshirt performs for a high-energy crowd with his old hits and newer releases.

Why opera isn’t as exclusive as you might think

March 27, 2019

The Metropolitan Opera is New York elites’ best kept secret. With its still lingering 19th century grandeur and 60-foot high ceilings, it can almost feel like a farce. But within the performance itself, there are quiet moments of intimacy too. 

Netflix airs 18 animated short films in a NSFW series

March 27, 2019

For all the Black Mirror fans out there, Netflix has finally released its animated equivalent: Love, Death + Robots. This not-safe-for-work (NSFW) series of 18 short films is the stunning collaborative effort of filmmaking teams from across the world. These five to 15 minute long short films are shocking but beautifully animated commentaries on, you guessed it, love, death and occasionally robots. 

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Cole Sprouse stars in the new romantic drama film Five Feet Apart.

Five Feet Apart is sincere despite slight plot holes

March 27, 2019

Sometimes you watch a movie that makes you feel like you’ve entered a different dimension. Not in the sense that you’ve been transported to a fantastical location, but rather everything in the movie operates differently from how you would expect events to normally operate. I often feel that way when watching romance movies. Whenever I watch them, I feel caught between feeling everything in the movie is ridiculous and that, if someone were to truly attempt to portray love, then it would look somewhat ridiculous. After all, one person’s love will never be the same as another’s. 

AKC’s Museum of the Dog invokes thoughts of ethics

March 27, 2019

If my Instagram feed is any indication, most of you spent spring break soaking up the carcinogenic sun in Cancún, Mexico or Miami. Well I didn’t. An albeit metaphorical ray of sunshine of my vacation, however, was visiting the American Kennel Club (AKC) Museum of the Dog in Manhattan.

The museum features “Sealyham Terrier Head Studies” by Lilian Cheviot.

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SNL’s Aidy Bryant stars in the new show Shrill, based on a memoir by Lindy West.

Hulu’s Shrill fearlessly takes on some of TV’s biggest taboos

March 28, 2019

Shrill, Hulu’s latest original comedy, is as liberating as it is entertaining. The show, which aired on March 15, 2019 stars Saturday Night Live (SNL) actor Aidy Bryant as Annie and is based on Lindy West’s memoir Shrill: Notes from a Loud Woman, in which West tackles taboos surrounding periods, abortions and the fat-shaming she faces as a plus-size woman. 

Joost Evers/Public Domain
Ingmar Bergman drew from his own life in directing Wild Strawberries.

Wild Strawberries still radiates truth 62 years later

March 27, 2019

I’d never heard of the film Wild Strawberries before The Charles Theatre put it as the most recent choice for their weekly Revival Series — a Swedish film from 1957 about a grumbling old man isn’t something I’d bet money on enjoying. But as with most Revival Series selections, I left the theater with a feeling of gratitude, an opinionated argument for going to random screenings and texting everyone in my contact list to “immediately go watch the most underrated movie of all time.”

T-Pain makes triumphant return to Baltimore stage

March 27, 2019

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: T-Pain is back and in a big way. After his victory on The Masked Singer and the release of 1UP, his latest project, T-Pain has ventured on a national tour. The very first show of the tour was held last Wednesday at Rams Head Live!, and I, an intrepid News-Letter reporter, was lucky enough to go.

Will Folsom/cc by-sa 2.0
T-Pain returned to Baltimore after 17 years with old hits and newer songs.

Australian singer Dean Lewis performed at Union Stage on March 9.

Dean Lewis makes “Waves” on headlining tour

March 14, 2019

I came away from Dean Lewis’ concert having learnt three things. Firstly, that all the best artistic inspiration comes from spending time in London. Secondly, that diamonds are definitely made under pressure. And thirdly, that Dean Lewis’ voice is even more beautiful in real life than it is over Spotify, which is something I truly didn’t think was possible. 

The Jonas Brothers return after 6 years with new song “Sucker”

April 4, 2019

It first came to Instagram. Perhaps the three brothers were all sitting in the same room and pushed the “share” button all at the exact same time. Perhaps Nick wanted to reinforce the dominance he’s been slowly establishing since 2013, and he posted the first picture. Even more likely, perhaps Kevin wasn’t even told about their new song coming out until he saw the other posts. But no matter how it happened, what matters is that it did: The Jonas Brothers are reunited, and they’ve released a new single called “Sucker.” 

Christopher Simon/ CC BY-SA 2.0
After six years apart, the Jonas Brothers recently released a new song.

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T-Pain’s latest comeback and why he’s succeeding

March 21, 2019

We’ve seen a lot of comebacks in the past few months. Lil Wayne was the first, and perhaps biggest, with the unlikely release (and even more unlikely success) of The Carter V album. Recently, we also saw Big Drako, AKA Big Soulja, AKA Soulja Boy push himself back into relevancy through sound-bite laden radio interviews, outrageous Instagram stories and the sale of illegal overpriced game consoles.