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Get inspired to make your world more beautiful I think it's important to listen to the news, however, lately doing so has become bad for my emotional health. When a friend suggested hosting a show, the first idea that came to mind was a version of _Fresh Air_ , since Terry Gross is my idol. But since that show already exists, I decided to focus on the ways that we can still find both beauty and inspiration around us, no matter how much the headlines get us down. To that end, I make sure to repeat two questions in each interview: "What comes to mind when you think of beauty?" and "Can art change the world?" While most of my guests are artists (like me), I choose each interviewee in the hope that our conversation will make me, and hopefully the listeners, want to be a better person. In addition, each guest has to be at least somewhat analytical, because people who can't get philosophical bore me. The result is wide-ranging conversations with fascinating people you may never have heard of, but will perhaps never forget.

Get inspired to make your world more beautiful I think it's important to listen to the news, however, lately doing so has become bad for my emotional health. When a friend suggested hosting a show, the first idea that came to mind was a version of _Fresh Air_ , since Terry Gross is my idol. But since that show already exists, I decided to focus on the ways that we can still find both beauty and inspiration around us, no matter how much the headlines get us down. To that end, I make sure to repeat two questions in each interview: "What comes to mind when you think of beauty?" and "Can art change the world?" While most of my guests are artists (like me), I choose each interviewee in the hope that our conversation will make me, and hopefully the listeners, want to be a better person. In addition, each guest has to be at least somewhat analytical, because people who can't get philosophical bore me. The result is wide-ranging conversations with fascinating people you may never have heard of, but will perhaps never forget.
More Information

Location:

Lancaster, PA

Description:

Get inspired to make your world more beautiful I think it's important to listen to the news, however, lately doing so has become bad for my emotional health. When a friend suggested hosting a show, the first idea that came to mind was a version of _Fresh Air_ , since Terry Gross is my idol. But since that show already exists, I decided to focus on the ways that we can still find both beauty and inspiration around us, no matter how much the headlines get us down. To that end, I make sure to repeat two questions in each interview: "What comes to mind when you think of beauty?" and "Can art change the world?" While most of my guests are artists (like me), I choose each interviewee in the hope that our conversation will make me, and hopefully the listeners, want to be a better person. In addition, each guest has to be at least somewhat analytical, because people who can't get philosophical bore me. The result is wide-ranging conversations with fascinating people you may never have heard of, but will perhaps never forget.

Twitter:

@MariaCorley

Language:

English

Contact:

7175380672


Episodes

Amanda Kemp: Creating a "Tribe of the Heart"

3/7/2018
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Dr. Amanda Kemp is an activist, playwright, poet, actress, writer, and educator, but her underlying mission is no less than a plan to heal the world. A survivor of foster care and sexual abuse, this Stanford and Northwestern graduate seeks to create a “Tribe of the Heart” dedicated to unity that grows out of true authenticity. With her book Say the Wrong Thing and her performance troupes Theater for Transformation and Inspira as resources, she seeks to connect with people who are more...

Duration:00:50:45

Eva Thompson: Educator, Church Musician, Proverbial Woman

3/7/2018
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Eva Thompson proves that some of the most remarkable people you will ever meet aren’t famous. That said, my mother is well-known. Her dedication to others guarantees it. My mother comes by her lifelong association with church music honestly. My great-grandfather, Austin Richardson, planted five African Methodist Episcopal Churches in her homeland, Bermuda, and both of her parents were pillars of their respective churches. Also, her great-grandmother was an organist and pianist, and her...

Duration:00:43:11

Robin Fay Massie: Musician of Mercy

3/3/2018
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Robin Fay Massie is gentle and vulnerable, but oh-so strong and passionate. My “homeland sister” shares my Jamaican roots, but my affinity for Robin has much more to do with who she is than her ancestry. I met her playing in the Philadelphia-based Black Pearl Orchestra. She introduced herself with a smile that immediately let me know this was a person who radiated warmth and light. Later, via Facebook, I discovered that she was the driving force behind Musicians of Mercy, a collective of DC...

Duration:00:35:17

Haley Simons: Championing Creativity

2/27/2018
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Although Haley Simons was a constant presence in my youth, this interview was our first in-depth conversation. We were co-competitors in piano; when I saw her name among the entrants in a music festival class, I knew I’d have to bring my “A” game. When I read a recent article about the important work she is doing to ensure that creativity receives equal educational emphasis with reading and math, I decided to reach out to her on Facebook, and then to ask her to be a guest on my podcast. Our...

Duration:00:43:06

Dr. Geoff Hicks: Healing Souls Through Sermon and Song

2/24/2018
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Geoff Hicks has been likened to Nat King Cole. While the caliber of singing and piano playing is comparable, this is inaccurate, because Geoff’s sound is unique. For years a fixture in major Boston hotels, Dr. Hicks is not only a graduate of the New England Conservatory, but also of the Andover Newton Theological school, allowing him to minister to souls in both sermon and song. That said, most of his compositions are instrumental, and include the piano. It was after hearing some of his...

Duration:00:57:37

Lin Ross: Poet, Novelist, Essayist, Newyorkophile

2/18/2018
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When I asked Lin Ross for an interview, I knew him only as a brilliant poet who had said something very encouraging about my first adult attempt at the genre. I also knew he was a Prince fan, which sealed the deal. He turned out to be insightful, intense, and extremely intelligent, a combination that led to one of my longest, widest podcast conversations to date, perhaps because he flipped the script and started asking me questions, too. Since we both have definite opinions on everything...

Duration:01:05:38

Alicia Thompson: Escaping a Sibling's Shadow

2/15/2018
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Alicia Thompson is an Atlanta-based pianist and educator whose students have included the children of elected officials and well-known rappers, professional basketball players, and the like. Her teaching philosophy is rooted first and foremost in caring for each student, an approach that has created lifelong bonds between her and many of the families who have come to know her. My conversation with this passionate musician and dedicated mother was both enlightening and surprising (did you...

Duration:00:31:49

David Cohen: Guitar/Pipa/Bagpipes

2/10/2018
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Philadelphia-based composer and multi-instrumentalist David Cohen is a cancer survivor who exemplifies the phrase “beauty for ashes.” While he never suffered from the disease himself, he watched his beloved wife, Tatyana, die of ovarian cancer, a process that nearly stripped him of his will to make music. While she was alive, he became an active advocate for patient-centered care, a role he continues today. After her death, he recorded a farewell to his life as a musician, which won an...

Duration:00:48:02

Dr. H. Leslie Adams: The Happiest Man Alive

2/7/2018
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Dr. H. Leslie Adams has worked hard to stay “middle of the road.” Some of us—myself included—may prefer to passionately skew in one direction or the other, but Leslie’s efforts make him very happy, and he is so sure of his own inner compass that he truly doesn’t care what anyone else thinks. Leslie’s self-assurance is also reflected in his music, which deliberately chooses the lovely over the edgy, shunning outside influences. This doesn’t mean his pieces lack tension, however. One thing is...

Duration:00:36:02

Carl Ellenberger: Probing Music's Effect on the Brain

1/31/2018
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Carl Ellenberger is a man of boundless curiosity and equal energy. A retired neurologist, he founded the Mount Gretna music festival, which is now a year-round series of diverse concerts featuring world-class musicians. Until very recently, Dr. Ellenberger made at least cameo appearances playing the flute, holding his own with performers whose life’s work is their instrument. His latest project is a book about the interactions between music and the brain; the ability beautifully is another...

Duration:00:39:15

Chris Gees: Celebrity Hair and Makeup Genius

1/24/2018
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Chris Gees knows Oprah. Chris Gees knows Beyonce. And Chris Gees has seen some of the most celebrated women in the world at their most unadorned, without their makeup, and without their Spanx, often in their sumptuous homes. Yet, Chris continues to treat everyone he meets with equal respect and kindness. If the way he dealt with me during the process of creating his podcast is typical (and I suspect that it is), each person he works with comes away feeling important. When I decided to call...

Duration:00:49:38

Rita Smith-Wade-El: Educator, Activist, Warrior

1/20/2018
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If Rita Smith-Wade-El is truly “like a shark,” as her son Ismail says, she swims through a world full of injustice and want, intent on destroying the poverty, injustice, and apathy that have been her prey since childhood. A discalced Carmelite nun, she is as devoted to her church as she is to the NAACP, women’s rights, and generally being an activist. I asked how she chooses which causes to support, and she answered that she doesn’t. In short, her mission is boundless. Although Rita is a...

Duration:01:09:34

Darryl Taylor: Countertenor and Champion for Marginalized Musicians

1/17/2018
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How many of us can say we’ve done much more than prove the butterfly effect? There’s nothing wrong with being devoted to ordinary challenges, like raising healthy children, or becoming a functional (as opposed to dysfunctional) member of society. Still, it’s always inspiring to meet someone like Darryl Taylor, who truly embraces the challenge to make a difference. I came away from my conversation with Darryl impressed by sense of mission. He saw a void—the lack of resources about African...

Duration:00:54:10

Patricia Thompson, Ph. D: The Power of Positive Work Environments

1/12/2018
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Patricia Thompson’s articles have been published by Forbes, TIME, and a host of other prominent media outlets. The thing that sticks with me about my conversation with this accomplished psychologist and consultant, who lists major corporations among her clients (and is also one of the most together people I’ve ever met), is her willingness to try new things without getting too caught up in the outcomes. When I asked about her efforts to build her profile, she mentioned that she realizes she...

Duration:00:28:30

Kevin Wood: Author, Educator, Crusader

1/7/2018
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Do artists have a responsibility to society? Kevin Wood thinks so. An educator and author with experience in all aspects of classical music, from the stage to recording companies to managing orchestras, Kevin has strong, informed opinions that may surprise you. Perhaps it isn’t surprising that Kevin cares so deeply about the people around him, since his first aspiration was to be a collaborative—not solo—pianist. Playing songs with words in something other than English spurred an interest in...

Duration:00:38:13

Peter Black, Virtuoso Guitarist

12/30/2017
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Peter Black is a London-based virtuoso guitarist/composer, seeker, and amateur philosopher who is equally at home playing classical, Latin, flamenco, jazz and the blues . His corporate clients include 20th Century Fox, Google, Bvlgari Jewels, Audi, General Motors, Sainsbury, United Coffee, 3-mobile, Fiat and many more. He has performed for celebrities such as Emma Thompson, Dustin Hoffman, Catherine Zeta-Jones and Michael Douglas, as well as appearing all over the UK in venues such as the...

Duration:00:39:26

Jeanne Krausman, Nonagenarian Pianist

12/21/2017
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For Jeanne Krausman, music is a “mitzvah.” Every day, she wakes up determined, responding to a call that is changing her in ways she doesn’t quite understand. And yet, she is certain of one thing: as long as she feels this way, her life will continue. For an anxiety-prone woman of 92, this sort of certainty is precious. Jeanne fell in love with the piano as a young girl, but didn’t perform her first public recital (for friends and family) until she was in her 60’s. In her 70’s, she learned...

Duration:00:55:34

Ruby Taylor: Making Sure Black Stays Beautiful

12/13/2017
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With a broad nose, full lips, and brown skin, Ruby Taylor always knew she was beautiful, but she soon realized that the world didn’t necessarily agree. Watching her niece struggle with the idea of being created in God’s image spurred this former social worker to write her first book. Ruby further bolstered her niece’s self-image by commissioning artist Shanequa Gay to paint her. When Ruby saw the painting’s uplifting effects, she commissioned a series of similar portraits for other girls,...

Duration:00:26:23

Janet Benton: The Heart Cracker

12/8/2017
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In her acclaimed debut novel, Lilli de Jong, Janet Benton seeks to “crack open” the hearts of those who devalue and dismiss the arduous job of motherhood. Although the tale is set in the 19th century, the struggle to find affordable childcare, especially among single mothers, still hits a bit too close to home. Despite the odds against single mothers raising healthy babies, Lilli remains determined, which isn’t surprising, given the background of her creator, the daughter of an ardent...

Duration:00:41:34

Kiana Corley, Singer/Songwriter

12/4/2017
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The first guinea pig for _Finding Beauty _needed to come from somewhere, so I looked in my backyard, or rather, down the hallway upstairs, and asked my daughter, very nicely, if she wouldn’t mind helping me out. Our conversation turned out to be brief, but revealing. We have an excellent relationship, but there are things I never would have asked about her thoughts on music and life if not for the more formal setting an interview creates, and her answers demonstrated her depth in ways that...

Duration:00:27:50