Saturday playlist

Missed the Cloud Cult in-studio performance on The Current? Didn’t make it to Talking Volumes with Barbara Kingsolver? Here’s your chance to catch up on the week’s radio stories, interviews and performances.

Novelist Paul Auster writes about home

Paul Auster’s new novel about abandoned homes and broken families speaks to Americans’ experience with the recession. He revisits themes of existential crisis and the search for identity.

In ‘Our Basic Nature,’ a radio story fit for an opera

Inspired by a radio show about a therapist who tried to raise a chimp as his own daughter, a public reading of the unfinished opera “Our Basic Nature,” will be held in St. Paul this week.

Pat Conroy on literature that changes lives

In his new book, the best-selling author of “The Great Santini” and “Prince of Tides” pays homage to the literature that transformed his life.

Cloud Cult chases time

The nationally known group is releasing a new CD called “Light Chasers.” Cloud Cult frontman and chief songwriter Craig Minowa, third from the right in the photo, talked with MPR’s Chris Roberts about the music on the new CD.

Cloud Cult perform live at The Current in the UBS Forum

This Twin Cities staple has been making emotionally-fused experimental rock for years, packing venues with capacity crowds entranced by live painting, dozens of instruments and encouragement to sit on the venue floor and become fully absorbed with the sound surrounding them.

Talking Volumes with Barbara Kingsolver

Barbara Kingsolver’s new novel, “The Lacuna,” is the story of a man who spends his youth among legendary Mexican figures Frida Kahlo and Diego Rivera, then grows reclusive in older age. Kingsolver talked with Kerri Miller on Nov. 11 as part of the Talking Volumes regional book club series.

Departing Nina Archabal reflects on history

The longtime director of the Minnesota Historical Society departs at year’s end. She joins Midday to talk about why history is important, the role of museums, and how best to convey the story of Minnesota’s people and places.

For Eiko and Koma, it’s a lot of work being ‘Naked’

For the last two weeks performers Eiko and Koma have spent six hours a day, six days a week, rolling slowly in a pile of dirt straw and feathers at the Walker Art Center in Minneapolis.

Making of the National Book Awards

Rocker icon Patti Smith took home the nonfiction prize for the just announced National Book Awards. This prestigious award recognizes fiction, nonfiction, poetry, and young people’s literature, but some critics may argue that the judges don’t always get it right.

Middle Class Rut perform live in The Current studio

Middle Class Rut is good ol’ fashioned alternative rock, a band which has collaborated live with the likes of Alice in Chains and Social Distortion, a total throwback for those of us who grew up with those bands

Art Hounds: blue paint, Black Dub and acting prowess

This week’s hounds treat us to a sparse production with powerful performances, drench us in brilliant guitar licks, and then roll us around in some blue paint for good measure.

Novel explores the psychological impact of torture

Author Thomas Kennedy moved to Copenhagen in the 1970s and has published more than 20 books in Europe, yet until recently had gone unpublished in America. His new book tells the story of a former political prisoner’s attempt to recover from years of torture.

Franken returns to comedy for Don Shelby roast

Don Shelby signs off for the last time on Monday as an anchor for WCCO-TV. Last month, Shelby was honored and lampooned at All-Star roast in downtown Minneapolis. Among the roasters: Polar explorer and educator Ann Bancroft, former Republican Sen. Norm Coleman and current Democratic Senator Al Franken.

Dinner Party Download featuring actress Sally Hawkins

This week’s Dinner Party Download features Golden Globe-winning actress Sally Hawkins. Her latest movie, “Made In Dagenham,” opens on U.S. screens this week. Sally talks about the real-life laborers the movie portrays — and why humankind should fear crows.

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