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From June 29, 2006...
A UAB professor uses film and music to teach Arabic language and challenge stereotypes. One of America's best "Fake News Guys" really likes Birmingham - we talk with Mo Rocca who visited the Magic City to star in a movie. And, the not quite punk, not quite pop sound of Birmingham's Gainer. I'm Greg Bass and this is Tapestry.
Language is acquired in many ways. There's the language we learn as children, from the moment our mother first whispers in our ear. There's the language we learn on the playground - although some of it may get us in trouble! And, of course, there's the language we learn in school - with its rules for contractions and split infinitives. Many of us learn another language - a foreign language - in school. And experts agree, the younger the student, the easier it is it pick up a foreign tongue. On the UAB campus, professor Lamia Zayzafoon is teaching adults to speak Arabic...and she uses Arabic film and music in great measure. From PRI, The World's Jessie Graham has our story.
He's been a reporter for the Daily Show with Jon Stewart and, more recently, with Jay Leno of the Tonight show. He's also a regular panelist on NPR's Wait Wait Don't Tell Me. But last weekend, writer and TV personality Mo Rocca was in town to star in a film written and directed by local filmmaker, Jennifer West. When Rocca came by our studios, I asked him how he was cast for his part in the film "Piece of Cake".
Local filmmaker Jennifer West who wrote and directly the film explained why she picked Mo Rocca to star in her movie.
Jennifer West is the writer and director of Piece of Cake starring Mo Rocca who really wanted to share with us his impression of jazz singer Al Jolson.
American Idol wannabe Mo Rocca can be heard most Saturday mornings as a panelist on NPR's Wait Wait Don't Tell Me. There's more Mo and an extended version of our interview with the film's cast on the Tapestry page of WBHM.org.
To hear the audio portion of the Community Calendar from Tapestry, click here.
Want to know more? Activeculture.info is a one-stop source for finding out what's going on in the Birmingham metro area.
Somewhere between not-quite-punk rock and not-quite-pop there's a Birmingham foursome called Gainer. The group is making a name for itself with a bitter brew of personal and political lyrics. This song is "Fairlee" from the album "You Say It Like It's a Bad Thing". (AUDIO MONTAGE) We've got more of Gainer's music available for download at the Tapestry section of our website, WBHM.org.
Tapestry is produced by Tanya Ott and Michael Krall. Hunter Bell handles musician relations and Francesca Rosko compiles the community calendar. Additional reporting this week from Jessie Graham. Next week on the program we talk to Mark Childress about his new book "One Mississippi" a story about two outsiders who become friends in a Mississippi High School and how things can go very wrong. I'm Greg Bass...we'll see you next week.