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Friday, May 14, 2021 — Houston, TX 72°

Arts and Entertainment


A&E 3/23/21 10:31pm

HACER’s ¡Ritmo! celebrates community resiliency and futurity

¡Ritmo! is known for being an explosion of vibrant colors, sounds and style, and for the members of Rice’s Hispanic community involved onstage and behind the scenes, it’s both a celebration of their cultures and a testament to their perseverance. The annual showcase is the chef-d’œuvre of the Hispanic Association for Cultural Enrichment at Rice. This year’s Ritmo (Spanish for “rhythm”) will be screened virtually at watch parties hosted by each of the residential colleges on Saturday, March 27. The event will include singing, dancing, poetry recitation and other artistic interpretations from both Rice students and members of the larger Houston community. 


A&E 3/23/21 9:51pm

The New Heart of Montrose: Blessings Gallery engenders gratitude

Tucked into a corner of Houston’s eclectic Montrose neighborhood, Blessings Gallery is a groovy one-stop shop for music lovers and plant parents alike. David Blessings opened the charming boutique amidst the pandemic on Oct. 11, 2020 to remind his community that in the face of hardship, we can still count our blessings, no matter how small.  



A&E 3/16/21 10:26pm

Femmes on Film: Women’s History Month Watchlist

It’s Women’s History Month, and you know what that means! Companies are going to tweet about how women are human beings as if it’s a revolutionary point, and there’s going to be more shirts at Forever 21 that say “feminism.” Cynicism aside, this month serves as a good reminder to support films made by women and reflect on the importance of celebrating women in the often male-dominated industry of filmmaking.  


A&E 3/16/21 9:23pm

‘ITCHY SOUR CANDY’: VADA students talk solo exhibition series

“ITCHY SOUR CANDY,” a series of four student solo art exhibitions, is this year’s Mavis C. Pitman Exhibition, organized through the visual and dramatic arts department. Kyle Dickens, Ginny Jeon, Isabel Samperio and Sumin Hwang’s exhibitions will each be open for eight days at Sewall Hall’s Emergency Room Gallery, spaced from March 12 to April 28. 


A&E 3/16/21 8:54pm

Historic River Oaks Theatre at risk of permanent closure

The River Oaks Theatre, a historic art deco cinema from the 1930s located at 2009 West Gray Street, is at risk of permanent closure after being unable to pay rent to Weingarten Realty for a year during the COVID-19 pandemic. Two Houston organizations, Artists for Artists and the Houston Film Critics Society, are working to prevent the cinema’s closure. 



A&E 3/9/21 10:12pm

Black Art at Rice: A Conversation With Milkessa Gaga

Milkessa Gaga (Martel College ’22) challenges norms within the realm of Japanese art by creating manga as a Black artist. Drawing inspiration from comics such as “Naruto,” “JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure” and “My Hero Academia,” he constantly integrates new techniques to refine his artistic style, and often shares his work on Instagram (@avantgaga). Unfortunately, because of the lack of Black creators in this field, manga and anime often depict Black characters with racist stereotypes. As a result, Gaga is passionate about uplifting other Black artists and hopes to someday create his own comics to reimagine manga in the image of Blackness. 


A&E 3/9/21 10:09pm

Pandemic Picks: Professors talk favorite TV and film to watch during quarantine

It’s been about a year since COVID-19 turned our lives upside down. And national reckonings in different spheres have shaped the months following the beginning of quarantine. In these strange times, watching on-screen content has been a quintessential activity for many — not just students. The Rice Thresher asked professors from different disciplines to share the films or series that have been keeping them entertained, encouraged or engaged.




A&E 3/9/21 8:08pm

Review: Clutch City Cluckers brings the best of Nashville hot chicken to Houston

If you’re looking for ways to spice up your next night out, Clutch City Cluckers has you covered. Since its grand opening on Feb. 26, Clutch City Cluckers has served Nashville hot chicken from its food truck located at 5550 Val Verde Street, right next to the Galleria Food Truck Park. I was impressed by their chicken sandwich — crispy pickles and tender chicken between a mouthwatering bun — which made my entire Saturday night. 


A&E 3/9/21 8:01pm

Ranking the top 10 silver screen portrayals of true crimes

Movies and TV shows based on true crime are about so much more than the crimes themselves — they provide filmmakers with a medium to tell compelling stories of the complex layers of our human condition. Whether heavily fictionalized or strictly factual, these stories are all the same at their core: they point to the shared humanity we all possess, the good and the bad. The result is an expansive genre that is far more artful and diverse than many would think. From serial murder to con men and securities fraud, here are my top 10 movies and TV shows based on true crime. 


A&E 3/9/21 7:47pm

Pop culture that defined a year of COVID

A year ago in March 2020, no one was prepared for how life would change due to COVID-19. The average student likely had little idea of how their lives would likely be dominated by Zoom, social distancing and uncertainty. Now that we’re in March 2021, the past year seems incredibly monumental in the change it caused to human existence around the world. Here, I sum up some of the most noteworthy cultural happenings that defined our year in quarantine.  


A&E 3/3/21 11:43am

The show goes on: 'Hello, Hamlet!' adapted for the screen after a year of delays

This past Saturday, Feb. 28, Wiess Tabletop Theatre streamed their quadrennial rendition of “Hello, Hamlet! A Play in Too Many Scenes,” a comedic retelling of William Shakespeare’s “Hamlet.” Performed roughly every four years since 1967, the musical is characterized by pop culture references and songs from movies and other musicals, rewritten each time to stay relevant. After the 2020 production was put on hold shortly before its premiere due to COVID-19 restrictions, it took a year for it to be adapted to digital media, starting nearly from the ground up.


A&E 3/2/21 9:17pm

Out of the shadows: “Electrifying Design” celebrates century of light

Just days after the city of Houston was in its most desperate need of light, the Museum of Fine Arts Houston unveiled an unparalleled beacon of brilliance. “Electrifying Design: A Century of Lighting” opened last week as the first large-scale U.S. exhibition to examine both the technological and artistic innovations in international lighting design. Through three thematic galleries, audiences are invited to see lamps, chandeliers and the humble bulb in a whole new light.  


A&E 3/2/21 9:10pm

‘The United States vs. Billie Holiday’: Andra Day shines while others are left behind

It can be hard to imagine that Andra Day, who plays legendary jazz singer Billie Holiday in “The United States vs. Billie Holiday,” has never played a leading role before. Better known for her success in the R&B music scene than on the silver screen, Day beautifully captures the spotlight and Holiday’s essence: her swagger, her love for gaudy jewelry and clothes and especially her voice. The same success, however, cannot be said for the rest of the movie, directed by Lee Daniels and written by Suzan-Lori Park. Though it boasts a talented star-studded cast, "The United States vs. Billie Holiday" largely fails to do justice to Holiday's life and legacy due to shallow writing and confusing plot development. 


A&E 3/2/21 9:06pm

Top 10 Best of Daft Punk

On Feb. 22, electronic duo Daft Punk unexpectedly announced their retirement after 28 years of prolific influence on the music industry with a short video featuring one of the duo's robots dramatically exploding. Emerging in 1993 out of the Paris underground rave scene, Daft Punk’s music effortlessly combined influences from disco, funk, R&B and even the Chicago house genre. The duo’s enigmatic robot personas allowed them to avoid the media and uniquely transcend the limitations of age, relevance and appearance to continuously create musical masterpieces. By choosing anonymity, Daft Punk maintained a focus on their creative freedom and musical quality, managing to evade the corrupting forces of fame and ego.  


A&E 3/2/21 9:01pm

KTRU Cozy Show brings local talent to student screens

Last Friday, Feb. 26, KTRU held its fourth annual Cozy Show, and it was unlike any year before. Instead of going to see and hear the featured artists perform live on Rice campus, this year’s audience was invited to enjoy the show from the comfort of their homes as the artists’ performances were streamed on KTRU’s Facebook and YouTube pages, marking the radio station’s first completely virtual concert.  


A&E 3/2/21 8:56pm

The life and work of filmmaker Ya’Ke Smith

Ya’Ke Smith, filmmaker and associate professor at the University of Texas at Austin’s Moody College of Communication, channels his powerful prose and uncompromising storytelling to rewrite traditional narratives of Black Americans in film.