General News

Junauda Petrus is a local playwright, actor, and so much more. She's currently performing in "Queen," a puppet show she co-wrote with Erik Ehn, at the Heart of the Beast theater in South Minneapolis. The show traces the surreal, painful path of a grandmother as she navigates the grief brought on by the murder of her grandson. The play's narrative takes the abstract form of a long poem and is accompanied by the haunting live gospel music of Musicians Taylor Johnson and Matt Larson and vocalists Mari Fitch and Selah Obinrin.

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Poet and playwright Amiri Baraka died in early January.
He was revered as an unapologetic champion of the Black Power Movement.
Baraka’s influence on American culture has been profound, and to celebrate his contributions a group of Minnesota artists have planned a major event for this Saturday.
“Spirit Reach: A Twin Cities Tribute to Imamu Amiri Baraka” will happen at 3 in the afternoon this coming Saturday, April 12, at the Capri Theater on West Broadway in Minneapolis. The show will feature Douglas Ewart, Toki Wright, Shá Cage, E.G. Bailey and many others, including j. Otis powell, who appeared recently on the KFAI program “Conversations with Al McFarlane”.
Here’s some of what Powell said about the life and legacy of Amiri Baraka.

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It’s springtime, and birds are on the wing, traveling above our great watery highways back to their summer homes.

But what birds? Where are they going? How do they do this?

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This Thursday through Saturday, Bedlam Theater in Lowertown St. Paul hosts three nights of dance performances for the seventh annual production of Rhythmically Speaking.  The events will feature national and local choreographers exploring a wide range of topics including addiction, masculinity, and the "groove of a hat."  KFAI's Ryan Dawes spoke with choreographer Rush Benson on the Morning Blend about these themes.  

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Minneapolis band Valet has a new album coming out called “The Truth Might Not Be Here,” which it will release Friday, July 10 at the Turf Club. Valet is sharing the bill with Gramophone, Whatever Forever, and Guante. The show starts at 8 p.m.  “The Truth Might not be Here” is also available for download. Valet's Robin Kyle stopped by the Thursday Morning Blend with his guitar to play something that will be on the new record.

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Minnesota Politicians and their run for the White House
Produced by Ahndi Fridell

Forty-four men have served as President of the United States, though none hail from Minnesota. In this MinneCulture documentary, KFAI legacy producer Ahndi Fridell profiles six local politicians who left a mark on national history in their run for the White House: Ignatius Donnelly, Floyd Olson, Harold Stassen, Hubert Humphrey, Eugene McCarthy and Walter Mondale.

Golden Retrievers swimming with dolphins. French bulldogs do-see-doeing with deer. A black bear and a Bengal tiger. That kind of thing. But you don’t have to go to Youtube to catch an unusual mashup. At Como Zoo in St. Paul, a harpist and some 400-pound gorillas have enjoyed exchanging music for nearly a decade. KFAI’s Diane Richard has the story.

 

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Ask nearly any Minnesotan about lutefisk and you’re likely to get a funny answer, especially from Minnesotans with Scandinavian roots. In this episode of “MinneHistory” we explore a controversial subject: Lutefisk. The fragrant and gelatinous Scandinavian-American codfish delicacy has long been associated with Minnesota. People love to celebrate – and poke fun at – this traditional immigrant food. What is Lutefisk, and how is it made? And why is it so smelly? KFAI's Jess Mador finds out with a visit to Olsen Fish Company, the largest lutefisk producer.

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This summer the City of Minneapolis and partners from across the state have collectively hosted events to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the signing of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.

A closing ceremony is scheduled for the Minneapolis Convention Center on Thursday, July 31st at 5pm. Toni Newborn is assistant director of the Minneapolis Department of Civil Rights and chair of the closing ceremony. She talked with KFAI’s Xan Holston, who asked why it’s important to remember the anniversary of the passage of a piece of legislation.

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