As a Mormon missionary, Ryan McIlvain spent two years ringing strangers' doorbells, even as he experienced doubts about his own faith. He left the church in his mid-20s. McIlvain's debut novel, Elders, tells the story of two young Mormons carrying out their missions.
Brazilian film director Bruno Barreto. His new film “Bossa Nova” is a romantic comedy starring his wife, American actress, Amy Irving. Barreto’s other films are the critically acclaimed “Dona Flor and Her Two Husbands” and “Four Days in September” which was nominated for an Academy Award for best Foreign Language Film.
Music critic Milo Miles comments on a recent concert he went to featuring Brazilian pop singer Caetano Veloso. He's currently touring in the United States promoting his new album "Livro" on the Nonesuch label.
Music critic Milo Miles reviews two "outstanding" world music CDS from 1996: "The Subtle Body" (Bar/None label) by Brazilian singer/guitarist Arto Lindsay, and "Money No Be Sand" (Original Music) an anthology by world music pioneer John Storm Roberts.
World music critic Milo Miles surveys the work of Caetano Veloso. Miles says that, of the musician's many albums, each features both knockout songs and slow bores. But that doesn't diminish from his cultural impact -- and ever improving output.
Author and Senior Fellow at the World Wildlife Fund, Roger D. Stone. He's on his way to Rio de Janeiro for the Earth Summit. His book, "The Nature of Development: A Report from the Rural Tropics on the Quest for Sustainable Economic Growth," (by Knopf) in which he theorizes that the only way to protect an environment is to provide economically viable, ecologically sound alternatives for the the people who live there.
Classical music critic Lloyd Schwartz is also an accomplished poet. The U.S. Information Agency recently sent Lloyd to Brazil for a lecture tour. He tells us he found a country with a huge love of poetry.
Talking Heads frontman David Byrne featured Brazilian singer Margarich Menezes on a recent tour. World music critic Milo Miles says she blew Byrne out of the water. Menezes' politically-informed new album, Elegibo, is intriguing but uneven -- though Miles admits that, as an American listener, he may be missing something.
Brazilian singer/songwriter Caetano Veloso (kah-TAH-no vah-LOW-sah). He's revered as one of the primary architects of "tropicalismo," - a 1960's cultural and musical movement that reevaluated traditional Brazilian music and incorporated non-Brazilian musical styles. Leftist intellectuals denounced his music for it's use of foreign influences. In the late 1960's he was jailed and exiled from Brazil for his participation in the musical movement because the government feared the social force it might have.
Composer Antonio Carlos Jobim, who introduced America and Europe to bossa nova, the sensual, urbane musical idiom of Brazil. Before he started composing bossa novas in the 50s, he wrote symphonies, drawing from his training as a classical musician. His most widely circulated works include "The Girl from Ipanema" and "Desafinado."
The bossa nova duo comprises married couple guitarist Orlando Haddad and pianist Patricia King, who both sing. Fresh Air producer Danny Miller asks them about the growth of their career and the unique rhythms they incorporate into their performances.