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Under the Big Top

BY Molly Labell in General

 Have you checked out “Circus” on PBS yet? The  new   documentary, aired as six hour-long episodes, gives viewers a glimpse of the clown alleys and sawdust floors behind the Big Apple Circus. The men get more airtime during the first episode than the women, and only one of the ten featured performers on PBS’s website is a woman, but the hard-working ladies of the Big Apple are depicted as disciplined and devoted to their craft. ... Read More
The first time I met Michele Carlo was at the Moth. We were in line at the Bitter End; I'd seen her perform and introduced myself as a newbie. "Storytellers are the best group of people," she told me. "Come out with us after the show." At that point, Michele had been telling stories in New York for more than a decade. She'd been a performer since college, where she was in with the Lower East Side's hip, arty crowd. She'd created a burlesque show around a character ... Read More
Black women have long been part of rock music’s cultural landscape, from Lauryn Hill to Betty Davis to Tina Turner to Missy Elliot. But mention people who rock, and black girls will rarely show up at the top of a list most likely populated by aging white dudes with expensive guitars. Black Girls Rock Inc., a New York based non-profit whose mission it is to empower young women of color through mentorship, arts education, cultural exploration and public service ... Read More
   The world’s oldest person, Eugenie Blanchard, died earlier today in St. Bart’s at the age of 114, according to The Huffington Post. The Caribbean super-centenarian was also the world’s oldest nun.  The woman to hold the title before Blanchard, Kama Chinen of Japan, died six months ago to the day. Have you ever noticed how the world’s oldest people keep…dying? Weird! It is possible that Blanchard’s vocation ... Read More
Some street style I shot while visiting  a friend in Boston. I really want to go back, I had such a lovely time.  Maybe it's because I've spent the last four years here but Fall in New York looks nothing like Fall in Boston. The trees turn such beautiful colors- saffrons, rich magentas and emeralds- I kind of wanted to eat the leaves. Or take them home with me and stare at the pretty colors all day long.  But I've digressed- back to street style! ... Read More
The New Beauty Magazine advocates plastic surgery as the sole way to become “beautiful”. In the current issue Megan Fox’s face is dissected using Leonardo da Vinci’s rule of thirds to summarize “why she is hot”. Essentially, her brow arches up at the highest point of her “feline-like” eye. She has high cheekbones. Her lower lip is slightly larger than the top. Her neck has a youthful contour, and her jaw is ... Read More
This phrase was originally used to describe unfairness regarding minority education, but it could easily be used to explain the current climate of women in politics. Blame Sarah Palin, but it seems that women who want attention for their campaign are becoming more like parodies of America than actual leaders. There is a leap before you look, celebratory ignorance being championed by Christine O’Donnell and Sarah Palin that seems indicative of America ... Read More
  19-year-old Rye Rye is the first artist to be signed to acronym-loving M.I.A.’s record label N.E.E.T. (“Not in Education, Employment or Training.” The new video for “Sunshine” (featuring M.I.A.) is a mellow, lazy video shot on the streets and playgrounds of Baltimore. This great video is bound to conjure up some mixture of happiness and homesickness. The subdued beats, hazy colors and schoolyard choreography are a perfect ... Read More
Being a southern transplant to New York City, I find fall one of the trickiest of the seasons. You would think winter would be difficult but no no, it's not, you just freeze and get to play in the snow and sometimes slip and fall on the sidewalks. Winter is easy because it's consistent, consistently cold. Fall is a tempestuous mistress of a season, hot one day, cold the next. Or deliciously pleasant in the bright buttery sunlight and brisk and prickling the shade. ... Read More
Kim Kardashian posed nude on the cover of this month’s W Magazine. The reality persona is known for her sex tape with Ray J, the TV show “Keeping Up With the Kardashians” and general socialite antics. Kim Kardashian interests me, as she must interest most of America, which would explain her popularity. Though this woman is by no means a shrinking violet, there’s something about her I find neurotic. I have no idea what Kim is like in real ... Read More
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