News Briefs: Enrollment opens for UT informal classes, 84th Legislature convenes

Since 1971 The University of Texas at Austin has offered evening, non-credit, classes to the public. The Informal Classes Program offers something for everyone, from the Beginner’s Guide to Novel Writing to Jiu-Jitsu or Swing Dance. Many of the classes are taught by UT professors, or members of the public can submit course proposals. Our Saturday story during PBS NewsHour Weekend goes inside their Spring Preview Night. You can see it online in the video above.

Our Sunday story comes from our partners at The Texas Tribune. The Weekly Political Roundup, from Multimedia Reporter Alana Rocha, is a rundown of news from the opening week of the 84th Legislative Session. You can watch it in the video below.

KLRU News Briefs air locally during PBS NewsHour Weekend, Saturday and Sunday evenings at 6:30pm. 

Q Night at the Movies 1/17

KLRU Q - Night at the Movies

This week Q Night at the Movies features back-to-back On Story presented by the Austin Film Festival followed by Mutiny on the Bounty!

On Story Deconstructing Dog Day Afternoon at 7 pm
Frank Pierson’s Academy Award® winning Dog Day Afternoon elevates the classic crime genre through its exploration of textured characters and rationale. Screenwriters Robin Swicord (The Curious Case of Benjamin Button) and Peter Craig (The Town) examine the story’s masterful reveal of information and its surprising, but inevitable and honest conclusion.

On Story Neo Noir: The Modern Day Film at 7:30 pm
Shane Black (Kiss Kiss Bang Bang) and Brian Helgeland (LA Confidential) discuss the modern day Neo Noir – a genre-bending response to the Film Noirs of the 1940s and 50s – and dissect the basic styles, impulses, themes, and tones that embrace this form of storytelling.

Feature film: Mutiny on the Bounty at 8 pm
First mate Mr. Christian (Clark Gable) and his 18th-century shipmates overthrow cruel Capt. Bligh (Charles Laughton) and set him adrift in the Pacific.

Arts In Context Shorts: Roots & Rhythms

Arts In Context Shorts introduces us to a group working to change lives. Teaching students to embrace their own cultures, Roots & Rhythms is an after-school drumming program founded in 2008 by Sevylla del Mazo. With drums created from recycled buckets, the bilingual students of Roots & Rhythms collaborate, create, and have some fun while learning the basics of percussion.  Thanks to a grant from the City of Austin’s Economic Growth & Redevelopment Services Office/Cultural Arts Division, this program continues to foster ties in surrounding communities and inspires hope for local children.

Highlights Jan. 18-23

KLRU Highlights

The competition stiffens like whipped peaks as the contestants take on desserts on Great British Baking Show Sunday at 7 pm.

Mary checks in to a hotel and checks out a potential mate and a secret from Violet’s past is revealed on Masterpiece Theater Downton Abbey part 3 of season 5 at 8 pm Sunday and Saturday.

James Norton (Belle) stars as Sidney Chambers, a young and charismatic vicar who turns amateur investigator when one of his parishioners dies under suspicious circumstances. Chambers on part 1 of Masterpiece Mystery Grantchester at 9 pm Sunday.

Venture behind closed doors to learn the harrowing story of a 21-year-old U.S. infantryman in Afghanistan on Independent Lens “The Kill Team” at 9 pm Monday. Followed by the animated short film “Confusion Through Sand,” which tells the story of a teenage military recruit alone and scared in a hostile desert.

Ripple of Hope at 10:30 pm Monday tells the story of Robert F. Kennedy’s speech on the night  Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. was killed in 1968.

A team of genealogists uncovers fascinating family stories in St. Louis on Genealogy Roadshow Tuesday at 7 pm.

President Obama delivers the State of the Union address to a joint session of Congress on Tuesday at 8 pm.

Nature Dogs That Changed the World part 2 at 7 pm Wednesday examines how can we learn to cope with the hard-wired instincts of pet dogs.

Nova at 8 pm Wednesday follows the epic operation to secure, raise and salvage the Costa Concordia cruise ship, which ran aground and tragically capsized off the coast of Italy on January 13th 2012, killing 32 passengers.

Austin City Limits at 10 pm Wednesday and 10:30 pm Friday features soulful pop from Sam Smith and Future Islands. UK sensation Smith sings “Stay With Me” and others from his debut. Future Islands features their single “Seasons (Waiting on You)” as well as other tunes from Singles.

Overheard with Evan Smith Thursday at 7 pm features Nicholas Kristof, two-time Pulitzer Prize-winner, journalist, author and op-ed columnist for The New York Times.

Arts In Context Thursday at 7:30 pm profiles Blue Lapis Light as the group transforms urban environments into works of art with their large-scale aerial dance productions.

The Daytripper heads to  Abilene and Lubbock in back-to-back episodes starting at 8 pm Thursday.

Dr. Paul Cruz, the sole finalist for AISD Superintendent, answers questions from students, teachers and the community at large on Civic Summit at 9 pm Thursday.

Journey through the mysterious world of sleight-of-hand with multi-talented conjurer Ricky Jay on American Masters at 8 pm Friday.

Elvis: Aloha from Hawaii at 9 pm Friday presents Elvis Presley at the pinnacle of his superstardom, giving one of the most outstanding concert performances of his career. Support KLRU and get tickets to see Elvis Lives at the Long Center.

Landscape architect students illustrate designs that face the future on Central Texas Gardener at noon Saturday. On tour, a multi-level design charmed anxious slopes for family living and habitat restoration.

Great American singer/songwriters Ryan Adams and Jenny Lewis return to Austin City Limits Saturday at 7pm. Adams features songs from his self-titled album. Former Rilo Kiley star Lewis comes in support of her LP The Voyager.

 

 

 

Science Night Jan. 21

Science Night for Jan. 21st looks at human’s changing relationship with dogs, salvages a sunken ship and examines Hitler’s SS.

Nature Dogs That Changed the World Part 2 at 7 pm
Some working dogs are able to use their skills to perform tasks they were bred for; there are still jobs today for herders, hunters and guard dogs. But as we multiply and transform the many breeds of dogs, honing their looks and their sizes, we also change our relationship with them, and theirs with us. How can we learn to cope with the hard-wired instincts of our pets, and what roles can they play in a world their ancestors would hardly recognize?

NOVA Sunken Ship Rescue at 8 pm
NOVA follows the epic operation to secure, raise and salvage the Costa Concordia cruise ship, which ran aground and tragically capsized off the coast of Italy on January 13th 2012, killing 32 passengers. Moving the ship – which stretches the length of three football fields, weighs over 114,000 tons and lies half submerged on the site of a protected reef with a 50-meter long hole in its hull – from its precarious perch on the edge of a 60 meter high underwater cliff will be a huge technical and logistical challenge. Now, NOVA joins a team of more than 500 divers and engineers working around the clock as they attempt the biggest ship recovery project in history.

Nazi Mega Weapons The SS at 9 pm
As Hitler’s power grows within Nazi Germany, so does that of the SS. From its humble beginnings as Hitler’s personal body guard, the SS under the leadership of Heinrich Himmler becomes a terrifying cult that engineers Hitler’s vision for a new Germany. By the start of the war, the SS holds sway in politics, police and security and is responsible for the creation of the concentration camps. Its power, influence and terror spread with the creation of a military wing: the Waffen SS. By the end of the war, the SS has grown into a machine that controls of every aspect of the Third Reich and brutally disposes of any opposition to Hitler.

 

AISD Interim Superintendent answers questions in Civic Summit

Austin ISD Interim Superintendent, Dr. Paul Cruz, is the sole finalist to become the permanent superintendent. Until the school board officially confirms him, AISD is hosting 5 community forums around the district. KLRU hosted one of those forums Tuesday evening in Studio 6A. Civic Summit: Student & Teacher Townhall will air Thursday, January 22, at 9pm.

During the hour-long discussion, hosted by Judy Maggio, Dr. Cruz spoke about a variety of issues facing the district including the school finance lawsuit, expanding pre-K, working with the newly elected City Council, equity among students, and so much more. PBS Student Reporting Labs All-Star and local high school senior Kennedy Huff fielded questions from our studio audience, made up of students, educators, parents, and community members.

The full show will be posted online on January 22. Until then, you can watch excerpts in the YouTube playlist above.

This Civic Summit was part of KLRU’s American Graduate initiative. As an American Graduate station, KLRU is seeking a clearer understanding of the nature and impact of the dropout problem in our region, and is partnering with organizations working to increase graduation rates. You can find more information about the initiative by visiting: klru.org/americangraduate.

Straus Re-Elected House Speaker

Representative Joe Straus will return to his role as House Speaker after a landslide win over Representative Scott Turner.

Turner has worked over the past year to curry favor with conservatives in order to unseat Rep. Straus as Speaker.  It was a campaign that led Straus to make veiled comments about Turner’s efforts to turn fellow Republicans against him in the vote for Speaker.

“Leading up to this day, a small number sought to divide us with misleading and personal attacks,” Straus said after being sworn in as Speaker. “But you can not effectively govern this House by dividing it.”

Straus garnered 127 votes over Turner’s 19.  This is the first time since 1975 that the House has held a contested vote for the Speaker of the House.

Overheard guests win big at Golden Globes

We’ve spoken to a number of impressive people in 5 seasons of Overheard with Evan Smith: winners of Oscars, Emmys, the National Book Award, the Pulitzer Prize, the Nobel Peace Prize, a Presidential Medal of Freedom recipient, just to name a few. At Sunday’s Golden Globe Awards, some recent Overheard guests added more accolades to that list.

Austin’s own Richard Linklater won in top categories for his 2014 film Boyhood. Linklater took home statues for Best Director of a Motion Picture and Best Motion Picture, Drama. Patricia Arquette, who stars in the film, won for Best Supporting Actress in a Motion Picture. We sat down with Rick in July to discuss the film. You can see that interview in the clip above.

Another Season 4 guest, Jeffrey Tambor, won for Best Actor in a TV Series, Musical or Comedy for his role in Transparent. Tambor taped Overheard during SXSW last year, when the show was only a pilot on Amazon. Now a series, it won for Best TV Series, Musical or Comedy. You can watch the episode with him here.

You can find the entire Overheard archive on our website: klru.org/overheard. While you’re there, sign up to be the first to hear about our free tapings. You can also listen to Overheard as a podcast on iTunes.

News Briefs: Cyclo-Cross Championship, First 10-1 Council Sworn In

CYCLO CROSS FOR AIR

Cyclo-Cross is a hybrid sport that’s gaining popularity around the world. This weekend, Zilker Park is hosting the 2015 USA Cycling Cyclo-cross National Championships. The event is free and open to the public and runs through Sunday. You can see our story about the event on Saturday during PBS NewsHour.

On Sunday evening, our story is about the historic swearing-in of Austin’s first 10-1 City Council.

“The excitement in this city and in this room is palpable, and the expectations are high.  And on this dias, the sense of responsibility is felt and it is real,” Austin Mayor Steve Adler told the crowd.

“Today is not about the 11 of us being sworn in before you. It’s about the community throughout Austin that, after suffering decades of under-representation and neglect in this building, will finally have a voice,” District 3 Council Member Sabino Renteria said.

All 11 members took the oath of office Tuesday evening.

You can see both stories this weekend during PBS NewsHour Weekend, Saturday and Sunday at 6:30pm.