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Wednesday, May 25, 2022 — Houston, TX

Arts and Entertainment

A&E 2/22/22 11:03pm

Soul Night amplifies multidimensional Black narratives

Featuring dance, song and spoken word, Soul Night provides an outlet for Black students at Rice to unapologetically voice their individual perspectives while simultaneously celebrating their shared identities. Preceded by a dinner reception, the event is the Black Student Association’s annual cultural showcase, held in the Grand Hall for the last time. This year, the show’s theme is Black excellence, which performers aim to honor in all of its nuances. Students and community members can watch Soul Night on Saturday, Feb. 26. Dinner starts at 6 p.m. and the show starts at 7 p.m.; tickets are $10.  

A&E 2/15/22 11:52pm

Review: ‘The Fallout’ provides a nuanced and empathetic examination of grief

Last year, a St. Louis reporter tweeted a promo for a segment on where parents should look for hidden drugs in their child’s room. The tweet started with the sentence: “Looks like a normal teen’s bedroom, right?” — a grave mistake considering that the bedroom looked nothing like a normal teen’s bedroom (for starters, no teen has ever owned a three hold punch). There are two morals of this story. First, the news station needs to fire whoever their teen-bedroom correspondent is. Second, there’s a reason the common refrain is “write what you know.” It’s really hard to accurately portray something or someone you don’t have personal experience with. 

A&E 2/15/22 11:49pm

Review: ‘Death on the Nile’ is a murder-mystery without substance

Going into “Death on the Nile,” I had extremely high hopes for this murder-mystery film based on the 1937 Agatha Christie novel of the same name. Its predecessor, “Murder on the Orient Express,” was a fantastic film filled with twists and turns and a genuinely surprising but well-earned final reveal. However, “Death on the Nile” is a massive disappointment, failing at all levels of production.

A&E 2/15/22 11:46pm

Review: Saba embraces a wide spectrum of emotion on “Few Good Things”

It’s been almost four years since Saba’s last release, “CARE FOR ME,” a therapeutic memorial for his late cousin Walter Long, who was murdered in 2017. The album saw him dealing with the loss of a mentor, friend and family member whose death left him empty. Saba’s detailed and personal writing about depression and grief struck a chord with listeners and drummed up anticipation for what Saba would do next.

A&E 2/15/22 11:43pm

Review: Toni Morrison’s re-released ‘Recitatif’ is as relevant now as ever

Late last year, the metastasizing effort by school boards across the country to ban certain books from school curricula, many of which were written by queer and/or BIPOC authors, rose to the forefront of American politics. Glenn Youngkin, Virginia’s then-conservative gubernatorial candidate and now governor as well as Rice alumnus, supported the effort to excise Toni Morrison’s Pulitzer-Prize winning masterpiece, “Beloved,” from students’ required reading. In response, Democratic incumbent Terry McAullife’s campaign began handing out free copies of the novel at his rallies. It didn’t win him the election, but it did bolster a burgeoning countermovement to ensure that Morrison’s work retained its legacy as being among the most essential literature ever crafted. And so now we have “Recitatif,” again. 

A&E 2/15/22 11:40pm

Celebrate Black History Month with these Black-owned restaurants near Rice

February is Black History Month, and what better way to recognize and celebrate the occasion than to support local, Black-owned businesses? From breakfast spots to vegan-friendly bakeries, here is just a sampling of some of the Black-owned restaurants near Rice or accessible by METRO for readers to consider visiting the next time they venture into Houston for a meal.

A&E 2/15/22 11:38pm

VADA, Rice Players combine forces for musical

Rice’s Visual and Dramatic Arts department and student-run theatre company the Rice Players will stage a musical production of “The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee.” Described by Christina Keefe, the VADA producer of the production, as an “uplifting, fun, wacky production,” the show features student actors and crew members and the work of both professional and student designers. Performances are Feb. 25, 26 and March 3-5 at 8:00 p.m. in Hamman Hall. Student admission is free, and general admission is $10.

A&E 2/15/22 11:36pm

‘We’re all we’ve got’: BSA and RASA celebrate shared identities

Africayé and Soul Night are some of the largest cultural events on campus, hosted by the Rice African Student Association and the Black Student Association, respectively. They each showcase unique aspects of Black and African culture, and together, they create vibrant spaces to celebrate Rice’s Black and African students. The upcoming events are particularly special for organizers because they mark a return to an in-person audience, and will be the last events held in the Grand Hall before the Rice Memorial Center is torn down. This year, BSA and RASA have collaborated more to execute their respective visions for live audiences.

A&E 2/1/22 11:16pm

Valen-tunes: Songs to listen to this Valentine’s Day

Maybe Valentine’s Day is a corporate scam to sell heart shaped boxes of chocolate, but how can I care when they’re so cute? Here’s my confession: I’m a hopeless romantic at heart despite my cynicism (one true love? I’m gagging), and, in that vein, here are some songs that hopefully encompass the conflict between romanticism and disillusionment around the holiday. You can listen to the full playlist on Spotify in the lead up to Valentine’s Day this year.

A&E 2/1/22 11:15pm

Seasonal review: Sprinkles finds its strength in classic flavors

Whether you’re looking to celebrate an occasion, grab dessert after a quick bite or simply indulge your sweet tooth, Sprinkles never disappoints. Located in Rice Village on 2563 Amherst Street, Sprinkles Cupcakes, a popular nationwide dessert bakery, is creating new limited flavor items on a monthly basis. For the month of January, they offered a seasonal Pop Tart cupcake, and I was curious as to how it would compare with other traditional flavors in both taste and value. 

A&E 2/1/22 11:13pm

Review: Estrada delivers with raw, rich ‘Marchita’

Más o menos technically translates to more or less but, like Silvana Estrada’s latest album “Marchita,” any kind of technical explanation does it injustice. The key difference is that in Spanish más o menos is a state of being, an answer to a cordial “how are you?” Silvana Estrada’s new album Marchita, beginning with the appropriate “Más o menos antes,” studies that state of being, the pain obscured behind the phrase (Más o menos usually implies a bit more menos than más). Fittingly, the album also explores the tensions of mistranslation, the communication breakdowns, the nuances lost in the process of romantic communion. 

A&E 2/1/22 11:11pm

Conventional documentary butchers beautifully unconventional popstar Charli XCX

Early in the “Alone Together” documentary, Charli XCX reflects on her early career at a time when people knew her songs but not her. Constrained by typical pop fare like “I Love It” and “Fancy,” Charli XCX didn’t shine until she charted her own path with the experimental PC Music collaborative in 2016’s “Vroom Vroom.” Ironically, the documentary makes the exact same mistake by flattening Charli XCX into a cut-and-dry popstar narrative that destroys the beautiful nuance of her pandemic-era musical production.

A&E 2/1/22 11:04pm

Start February right with these romantic comedies

Valentine’s Day is right around the corner. Whether you view it as a scheme created by greeting card companies and Hershey’s integrated marketing team or as an important day to recognize love, we can all agree on the artistic genius that is the romantic comedy.  Regardless of your relationship status, everyone deserves to open a box of chocolates and watch ridiculously predictable romantic comedies, so here’s a list to get you started.

A&E 2/1/22 11:02pm

Senior Spotlight: Laura Semro discusses transience in art

​​From illustrating Bible stories in the first grade through competitive on-site drawing as a teenager to transferring to Rice as an art history and visual and dramatic arts double major, art has always been a part of life for Laura Semro, Sid Richardson College senior. 

A&E 2/1/22 11:00pm

Rice PRIDE hosts first Open Mic Night

To many, Rice PRIDE events are just that — capitalized and in technicolor. Last Thursday, the undergraduate club’s Open Mic Night offered students a more intimate setting to express themselves and connect with listeners, who received them with earnest applause and words of support. Throughout the night, the energy ebbed and flowed as students presented their art with topics ranging from sobering to inspiring. Guidelines were purposefully left open-ended, since the event was intended to provide a communal space for performers to make the night their own.

A&E 1/25/22 11:57pm

New Year, new hobbies to explore

As we end the first month of 2022, it’s never too late to pick up new hobbies and learn new habits to set yourself up for success for the rest of the year (and maybe longer). With everything from little habits to fun new hobbies, here are some things to try that embody the “new year, new you” motto. 

A&E 1/25/22 11:42pm

Celebrate Lunar New Year in Houston

With the Lunar New Year approaching on Feb. 1, celebrations are happening in Houston to ring in new beginnings and the Year of the Tiger. The Lunar New Year is the beginning of the lunar calendar and is commonly referred to as the Chinese New Year, but is actually celebrated by several countries and cultures globally. With celebrations happening both virtually and in person, there are plenty of opportunities to commemorate the new year across the Houston area.