Fresh Air on WPRL

Weekdays at 11:00am
  • Hosted by Terry Gross

Opening the window on contemporary arts and issues with guests from worlds as diverse as literature and economics.

Actor Oscar Isaac was middle school-age in 1992 when Hurricane Andrew swept through his hometown, blowing the roof off his Florida home. He remembers holding his dog and huddling with his family under some cushions in the living room as water rose up to his ankles.

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TERRY GROSS, HOST:

This is FRESH AIR.

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "HEROIN")

Updated October 20, 2021 at 2:09 PM ET

Copyright 2021 Fresh Air. To see more, visit Fresh Air.

TERRY GROSS, HOST:

This is FRESH AIR. I'm Terry Gross.

Actor Billy Porter grew up in Pittsburgh, immersed in the Pentecostal church and convinced that he would be damned for being gay. It wasn't until he was introduced to the world of theater in sixth grade that Porter began to imagine a different future.

Theater, he says, "cracked open a space for me to dream beyond my circumstance."

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It's a familiar story - a majority Black town in Michigan has high levels of lead in the water. Officials have known about it for years. People wait in long lines for water to bathe, cook and brush their teeth with. But we're not talking about Flint here. This time it's Benton Harbor in the southwestern corner of Michigan. Last week, Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer set an 18-month goal for replacing the lead pipes throughout the city. Marcus Muhammad is the mayor of Benton Harbor, and he joins us now.

Welcome to ALL THINGS CONSIDERED.

Fresh Air Weekend highlights some of the best interviews and reviews from past weeks, and new program elements specially paced for weekends. Our weekend show emphasizes interviews with writers, filmmakers, actors and musicians, and often includes excerpts from live in-studio concerts. This week:

Questlove spins the soundtrack of his life in 'Music is History': In his new book, Roots co-founder Ahmir "Questlove" Thompson starts in 1971 and moves year-by-year through his life, writing about memories, turning points and the songs he listened to.

DAVE DAVIES, HOST:

This is FRESH AIR. I'm Dave Davies, in for Terry Gross.

The memoir "Maid" - that's M-A-I-D - by our guest Stephanie Land is about what it's like to clean houses for a living and what it's like to be a working single mother struggling to get out of poverty. The new Netflix miniseries of the same title is adapted from Land's memoir. Here's a clip from the series in which Alex, the single mom based on Land and played by Margaret Qualley, applies for government assistance.

(SOUNDBITE OF TV SHOW, "MAID")

The Last Duel is a sprawling, often ungainly movie — a talky, three-part Rashomon-style drama that mixes past and present-day politics — but there's a bracing intelligence to its messiness. It opens the way a lot of Ridley Scott period epics do, on a gloomy day with two sides preparing for battle.

Copyright 2021 Fresh Air. To see more, visit Fresh Air.

TERRY GROSS, HOST:

This is FRESH AIR. I'm Terry Gross.

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