Sometimes, it’s easy to feel like we’re lacking in heroes. This week, we’ve got a collection of tales to prove valor is anything but dead. Meet the comics writers investing in the tenacity of teens, an all-female string quartet playing the classics on their own terms, and a London-based musician keeping the demons at bay.
At the epicenter of Portland’s thriving comics community is Brian Michael Bendis. He spent 17 years at Marvel, writing for “Spider Man,” “Iron Man,” and “Jessica Jones.” Now, Bendis has made the switch to DC, where — aside from writing “Superman” — he’s developing five titles for a new teen-oriented imprint, Wonder Comics. “Naomi,” the title we’re most excited about, follows a 17-year-old girl as she unravels her past in the fictional town of Port Oswego, Oregon. Bendis and his co-writer on the series, David F. Walker, joined us to discuss representation in comics, and expanding the DC universe to welcome a younger generation.
Mousai Remix Plays Classical Music for the Rest of Us - 22:15
Mousai Remix is the all-female string quartet making classical music accessible — and exciting. Breathing new life into the genre, the group focuses on works that have often been overlooked, forgotten, or ignored. In February, for instance, they presented a concert celebrating (just a few of) their favorite black composers. Think Out Loud’s Dave Miller spoke with violist Jennifer Arnold, cellist Marilyn de Oliveira, and violinists Emily Cole and Shin-young Kwon. Don’t miss Mousai Remix performing in 45th Parallel’s ode to the German composer Richard Strauss on March 21. Tickets are available here.
At the tender age of 23, London-based singer-songwriter Nilüfer Yanya already exudes the confidence and self-possession of an industry veteran. Yanya’s dynamic pop music — which incorporates elements of soul, rock, and jazz — reveals her efforts to keep contemporary anxieties at bay. Yanya is something of an overachiever; aside from her musical projects, she’s involved with Artists in Transit, a nonprofit that stages art workshops in refugee camps and settlement squats around Europe. At a recent live session with opbmusic, Yanya previewed a few songs from her upcoming release, “Miss Universe.” The album is out March 22, but in the meantime, you can stream it here.