61 The High Museum in Atlanta Revisits the Later Works of Painter Salvador Dali
MARIO RITTER: Welcome to AMERICAN MOSAIC in VOA Special English.
I'm Mario Ritter.
This week we answer a question about the great Fillmore music halls and the man behind them. We also play some recordings from shows there.
But first, we visit a museum in Georgia to explore the works of the wild Spanish painter Salvador Dali.
MARIO RITTER: The High Museum of Art in Atlanta, Georgia is well known for its collection of nineteenth and twentieth century art. It is also known for its very modern building. American architect Richard Meier designed the museum’s main building. Italian architect Renzo Piano later designed an addition to it. The museum’s current exhibit is about the Spanish surrealist painter
Salvador Dali. Barbara Klein has more.
BARBARA KLEIN: The High Museum’s current exhibit is called “Salvador Dali: The Late Work.” Many of the paintings have not been shown in the United States for over fifty years. This
is the first major exhibit to pay attention to Dali’s art after nineteen forty.
The exhibit aims to change the belief that his later art was not as strong as his earlier works. Salvador Dali is widely recognized as one of the most famous and also disputed artists of the twentieth century. He was born in nineteen-oh-four in Figueres, Spain. In the nineteen thirties he became one of the most well known members of the Surrealist art movement.
The Surrealists rejected reason in favor of the mind’s subconscious. Many works were very
strange and inspired by dreams.
The Surrealists later expelled Dali from their group. But this did not stop him from continuing to call attention to his art and his wild personality. His work is playful, strange, intelligent and extraordinarily skillful.
As visitors enter the High Museum’s exhibit, they get to know the artist through a series of pictures taken by photographer Philippe Halsman. One series of playful black and white photos of Dali are all about the different forms of his famous mustache.
Many paintings in the exhibit combine Dali’s interest in religion and science. It was unusual for a modern artist to paint a subject as traditional as religion.
“The Madonna of Port Lligat” from nineteen fifty is his version of a painting of Mary and Jesus.
He painted his wife Gala as Mary. She and her surroundings seem to be breaking apart like molecules.
“Christ of St. John of the Cross” shows Jesus on the cross. But he is seen from a striking angle, as though Dali were looking down on him from above his head. Experts say this is one of the most popular religious paintings of the twentieth century.
Dali called his belief in science and religion “nuclear mysticism.”
The exhibit also tells about Dali’s interest in drawing, clothing, theater and movies. And the
exhibit shows how he created an image of himself that was larger than life.
Bill Graham and the Fillmores
MARIO RITTER: Our listener question today comes from Japan. Neal Osawa wants to know about the concert promoter Bill Graham and his Fillmore music halls.
Bill Graham was born Wolfgang Grajonca in nineteen thirty-one in Berlin, Germany. He fled by foot to France to escape the Nazis in nineteen thirty-nine. A few years later, he moved to the United States.
Bill Graham was one of the most famous concert promoters and band managers of his time. He held his first event in nineteen sixty-five at the Fillmore Auditorium in San Francisco, California. It was a benefit performance for a political comedy group called the San Francisco Mime Troup. Bill Graham served as the group’s business manager.
San Francisco had long been known as one of the most popular entertainment cities in the United States.
Graham had rented the Fillmore Auditorium from an African American man named Charles Sullivan. Sullivan was one of the major promoters of black music at the time. He had made the Fillmore Auditorium popular worldwide by bringing famous African American performers like Billie Holiday, James Brown and Sammy Davis, Jr.
Bill Graham’s benefit concert was so successful that he asked to use the Fillmore for other concerts. They were also successful.
Charles Sullivan was murdered in nineteen sixty-six. Bill Graham took over the job of getting performers for the hall. He brought in some of the biggest names in rock history. They included the Grateful Dead, Jefferson Airplane, Big Brother and the Holding Company, Howling Wolf and Otis Redding. The concerts were advertised as “Bill Graham Presents.” They used creatively
designed posters for advertisements. The concerts were also popular for the extreme light shows that lit up the stage as the bands performed.
In nineteen sixty-eight, Bill Graham moved his operations to a dance hall called the Carousel Ballroom. He renamed it the Fillmore West.
That same year he opened another concert hall in New York City called the Fillmore East. Janis Joplin, Jimi Hendrix, the Doors, Miles Davis and the Who were among the many famous musicians who performed there.
Bill Graham was an extremely talented business man and band manager. He was one of the first promoters to include rock, jazz, blues and folk on the same show. He died in a helicopter crash in nineteen ninety-one as he was leaving a concert. He was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame the following year.
Bill Graham and The Music
MARIO RITTER: That is blues great Muddy Waters performing at the first Fillmore. Katherine Cole plays more of the music Bill Graham helped make great.
KATHERINE COLE: The rock band Jefferson Airplane was popular in San Francisco in nineteen
sixty-five. Bill Graham presented the band in the first of what he would call dance concerts at the Fillmore that year.
The following Bill Graham became the band’s manager. In nineteen sixty-seven, Jefferson
Airplane’s song “Somebody to Love” became a big hit.
The Californian band the Byrds was among the groups Bill Graham presented at the new space he called Fillmore West. Here is a recording from a nineteen sixty-nine show. The Byrds perform “So You Want to be a Rock and Roll Star.”
In nineteen seventy-one Aretha Franklin was already a huge success as the “Queen of Soul.” But
former producer Jerry Wexler wanted her to perform for the rock and roll audiences at Fillmore West. Later, she said it was one of the greatest moments of her career. The concerts were recorded on an album. Here is Aretha Franklin performing “Love the One You’re With,” from “Aretha Live at Fillmore West.”
Finally, we leave you with music from the Fillmore East in New York City. It was recorded May thirtieth, nineteen seventy-one. Less than a month later, Bill Graham closed the Fillmore East forever.
Here is New York native Laura Nyro with “Spanish Harlem.”
MARIO RITTER: I’m Mario Ritter. Our program was written by Dana Demange, June Simms and Caty Weaver, who also was our producer.
Join us again next week for AMERICAN MOSAIC, VOA’s radio magazine in Special English.
62 US Condemns WikiLeaks Release of Secret Documents
This is IN THE NEWS in VOA Special English.
Secretary of State Hillary Clinton says the release of thousands of State Department documents will not in any way interfere with American diplomacy.
HILLARY CLINTON: “I have not had any concerns expressed about whether any nation will not
continue to work with, and discuss matters of importance to us both, going forward.”
Secretary Clinton condemned the release of diplomatic cables as an attack on American foreign
policy interests and the international community. She said the United States is taking aggressive steps to hold responsible those who stole the information. And she said it is taking action to make sure it does not happen again. But the Secretary of State said the real damage to America’s international relationships will be small. She made the comments during a visit to Kazakhstan Wednesday. Secretary Clinton spoke by telephone with a number of world leaders to express regret for the release of the documents. She made this statement on Monday.
HILLARY CLINTON: “The United States deeply regrets the disclosure of any information that was intended to be confidential including private discussions between counterparts or our diplomats’ personal assessments and observations. I want to make clear that our official foreign
policy is not set through these messages but here in Washington.”
The website WikiLeaks planned to publish more than two hundred fifty thousand diplomatic cables this week. Several newspapers have been reporting details of the documents. They include statements by American diplomats about the private and public lives of world leaders. They also include criticisms of governments around the world. For example, a secret document apparently from the American embassy in Moscow says Russia is extremely corrupt at every level of government.
Hundreds of diplomatic cables from the American embassy in Kabul say corruption exists in every level of government in Afghanistan. The cables accuse government officials of making illegal payments, hiding money and profiting from the drug trade. They also describe Afghan President Hamid Karzai as weak and ineffective.
Some cables say Saudi Arabia and other Arab countries have urged the United States to attack Iran as a way to prevent it from getting nuclear weapons. Other cables suggest that the United States military has carried out air strikes against suspected al-Qaida targets in Yemen. The Yemeni government had earlier told its people that its military alone had been carrying out the raids.
Officials believe an American soldier gave all the documents to WikiLeaks after getting them from a Defense Department computer network.
The international police agency INTERPOL approved a “red notice” for the arrest of the founder of WikiLeaks, Julian Assange. It tells officials to follow his movements. Sweden approved an order to arrest Mr. Assange, who is an Australian citizen. He is wanted for questioning about sex crimes.
American government officials have been angry about WikiLeaks publications that began earlier this year. They included hundreds of thousands of documents about the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.
And that's IN THE NEWS in VOA Special English. I'm Steve Ember.
63 Short Story: ‘The Last Leaf’ by O. Henry
FAITH LAPIDUS: Now, the VOA Special English program AMERICAN STORIES.
Our story today is called "The Last Leaf." It was written by O. Henry. Here is Barbara Klein with the story.
BARBARA KLEIN: Many artists lived in the Greenwich Village area of New York. Two young women named Sue and Johnsy shared a studio apartment at the top of a three-story building.
Johnsy's real name was Joanna.
In November, a cold, unseen stranger came to visit the city. This disease, pneumonia, killed many people. Johnsy lay on her bed, hardly moving. She looked through the small window. She could see the side of the brick house next to her building.
One morning, a doctor examined Johnsy and took her temperature. Then he spoke with Sue in another room.
"She has one chance in -- let us say ten," he said. "And that chance is for her to want to live. Your friend has made up her mind that she is not going to get well. Has she anything on her mind?" "She -- she wanted to paint the Bay of Naples in Italy some day," said Sue.
"Paint?" said the doctor. "Bosh! Has she anything on her mind worth thinking twice -- a man for example?"
"A man?" said Sue. "Is a man worth -- but, no, doctor; there is nothing of the kind." "I will do all that science can do," said the doctor. "But whenever my patient begins to count the carriages at her funeral, I take away fifty percent from the curative power of medicines." After the doctor had gone, Sue went into the workroom and cried. Then she went to Johnsy's room with her drawing board, whistling ragtime.
Johnsy lay with her face toward the window. Sue stopped whistling, thinking she was asleep. She began making a pen and ink drawing for a story in a magazine. Young artists must work their way to "Art" by making pictures for magazine stories. Sue heard a low sound, several times repeated. She went quickly to the bedside.
Johnsy's eyes were open wide. She was looking out the window and counting -- counting backward. "Twelve," she said, and a little later "eleven"; and then "ten" and "nine;" and then "eight" and "seven," almost together.
Sue looked out the window. What was there to count? There was only an empty yard and the blank side of the house seven meters away. An old ivy vine, going bad at the roots, climbed half way up the wall. The cold breath of autumn had stricken leaves from the plant until its branches, almost bare, hung on the bricks.
"What is it, dear?" asked Sue.
"Six," said Johnsy, quietly. "They're falling faster now. Three days ago there were almost a hundred. It made my head hurt to count them. But now it's easy. There goes another one. There are only five left now."
"Five what, dear?" asked Sue.
"Leaves. On the plant. When the last one falls I must go, too. I've known that for three days. Didn't the doctor tell you?"
"Oh, I never heard of such a thing," said Sue. "What have old ivy leaves to do with your getting well? And you used to love that vine. Don't be silly. Why, the doctor told me this morning that your chances for getting well real soon were -- let's see exactly what he said – he said the chances
were ten to one! Try to eat some soup now. And, let me go back to my drawing, so I can sell it to the magazine and buy food and wine for us."
"You needn't get any more wine," said Johnsy, keeping her eyes fixed out the window. "There goes another one. No, I don't want any soup. That leaves just four. I want to see the last one fall before it gets dark. Then I'll go, too."
"Johnsy, dear," said Sue, "will you promise me to keep your eyes closed, and not look out the window until I am done working? I must hand those drawings in by tomorrow."
"Tell me as soon as you have finished," said Johnsy, closing her eyes and lying white and still as a fallen statue. "I want to see the last one fall. I'm tired of waiting. I'm tired of thinking. I want to turn loose my hold on everything, and go sailing down, down, just like one of those poor, tired leaves."
"Try to sleep," said Sue. "I must call Mister Behrman up to be my model for my drawing of an old miner. Don't try to move until I come back."
Old Behrman was a painter who lived on the ground floor of the apartment building. Behrman was a failure in art. For years, he had always been planning to paint a work of art, but had never yet begun it. He earned a little money by serving as a model to artists who could not pay for a professional model. He was a fierce, little, old man who protected the two young women in the studio apartment above him.
Sue found Behrman in his room. In one area was a blank canvas that had been waiting twenty-five years for the first line of paint. Sue told him about Johnsy and how she feared that her friend would float away like a leaf.
Old Behrman was angered at such an idea. "Are there people in the world with the foolishness to die because leaves drop off a vine? Why do you let that silly business come in her brain?" "She is very sick and weak," said Sue, "and the disease has left her mind full of strange ideas." "This is not any place in which one so good as Miss Johnsy shall lie sick," yelled Behrman. "Some day I will paint a masterpiece, and we shall all go away."
Johnsy was sleeping when they went upstairs. Sue pulled the shade down to cover the window. She and Behrman went into the other room. They looked out a window fearfully at the ivy vine. Then they looked at each other without speaking. A cold rain was falling, mixed with snow. Behrman sat and posed as the miner.
The next morning, Sue awoke after an hour's sleep. She found Johnsy with wide-open eyes staring at the covered window.
"Pull up the shade; I want to see," she ordered, quietly.
After the beating rain and fierce wind that blew through the night, there yet stood against the wall one ivy leaf. It was the last one on the vine. It was still dark green at the center. But its edges were colored with the yellow. It hung bravely from the branch about seven meters above the ground. "It is the last one," said Johnsy. "I thought it would surely fall during the night. I heard the wind. It will fall today and I shall die at the same time."
"Dear, dear!" said Sue, leaning her worn face down toward the bed. "Think of me, if you won't think of yourself. What would I do?"
But Johnsy did not answer.
The next morning, when it was light, Johnsy demanded that the window shade be raised. The ivy leaf was still there. Johnsy lay for a long time, looking at it. And then she called to Sue, who was preparing chicken soup.
"I've been a bad girl," said Johnsy. "Something has made that last leaf stay there to show me how bad I was. It is wrong to want to die. You may bring me a little soup now."
An hour later she said: "Someday I hope to paint the Bay of Naples."
Later in the day, the doctor came, and Sue talked to him in the hallway.
"Even chances," said the doctor. "With good care, you'll win. And now I must see another case I
have in your building. Behrman, his name is -- some kind of an artist, I believe. Pneumonia, too. He is an old, weak man and his case is severe. There is no hope for him; but he goes to the hospital today to ease his pain."
The next day, the doctor said to Sue: "She's out of danger. You won. Nutrition and care now -- that's all."
Later that day, Sue came to the bed where Johnsy lay, and put one arm around her. "I have something to tell you, white mouse," she said. "Mister Behrman died of pneumonia today in the hospital. He was sick only two days. They found him the morning of the first day in his room downstairs helpless with pain. His shoes and clothing were completely wet and icy cold. They could not imagine where he had been on such a terrible night.
And then they found a lantern, still lighted. And they found a ladder that had been moved from its place. And art supplies and a painting board with green and yellow colors mixed on it. And look out the window, dear, at the last ivy leaf on the wall. Didn't you wonder why it never moved when the wind blew? Ah, darling, it is Behrman's masterpiece – he painted it there the
night that the last leaf fell."
FAITH LAPIDUS: You have heard the story "The Last Leaf" by O.Henry. Your storyteller was Barbara Klein. This story was adapted by Shelley Gollust and produced by Lawan Davis. You can read and listen to other American Stories on our Web site, voaspecialenglish.com. 64 Milton Hershey, 1857-1945: He Created a Successful Business and Built a Sweet Town
BARBARA KLEIN: I’m Barbara Klein.
STEVE EMBER: And I’m Steve Ember with the VOA Special English program PEOPLE IN AMERICA. Today we tell about Milton Hershey. He built one of the sweetest towns in the United States.
BARBARA KLEIN: Milton Snavely Hershey was born in eighteen fifty-seven in central Pennsylvania. His mother was a member of the Mennonite Church. The religious group valued self-denial and community service. His father worked at many different jobs. The Hershey family moved several times during Milton’s childhood. His parents did not have a
happy marriage. They lived separately for much of their lives. Missus Hershey finally rejected her husband after a daughter died in eighteen sixty-seven.
STEVE EMBER: Milton Hershey stopped attending school when he was twelve years old. He first went to work as an assistant for a man who published a German language newspaper. Milton did not like the job. He was dismissed after dropping his hat into a machine. Milton then got a job with a candy and ice cream maker in the town of Lancaster. There, he learned how to mix sugar and water to make candy products. At the time, American candy makers used chocolate mainly to cover candies. Reports say it was bitter tasting and not at all like the taste of chocolate today.
BARBARA KLEIN: Milton moved to the city of Philadelphia when he was eighteen years old. He had already learned all he could about candy production. His mother and her family offered to help him set up a candy store. But the business failed after six years. Milton decided to join his father in the western state of Colorado. The younger Hershey found a job with a candy maker in Denver. There, he worked with a kind of sticky candy: caramel. He also learned the importance of using fresh milk in making good caramel.
Milton later attempted candy businesses in Chicago and New York City. But like before, each business failed.
STEVE EMBER: Milton returned to Lancaster. Most family members considered him a failure. But he continued to receive help from his mother’s sister and a man who had worked at the Philadelphia store. Milton began making caramels his own way – with fresh milk. His
caramels were softer than others being sold and less sticky. One day, an English importer tasted Hershey’s caramels and placed a large order. Soon the Lancaster Candy Company was a
success. Hershey became one of Pennsylvania’s top businessmen. He was selling his candies all
across the United States and Europe.
BARBARA KLEIN: Things began changing for Hershey after he visited the Chicago World’s Fair in eighteen ninety-three. At the World’s Fair, he saw chocolate-making machines from
Germany. He decided that chocolate was the future of the candy business, and bought the machines. He had them moved to Pennsylvania, and sold the Lancaster Candy Company. He was developing an unusual plan -- to build a large chocolate factory and a town to support it.
STEVE EMBER: Michael D’Antonio wrote a book about Milton Hershey. It says Hershey got
the idea for his town from the Cadbury family in Britain. The Cadburys made chocolates. They also built a factory surrounded by a town. The book says Hershey decided to do the same. He paid for many buildings in his town. He wanted to create a place where his factory’s workers
could own their own houses. In this way, he prevented Hershey, Pennsylvania from becoming a factory town in which the workers were forced to pay their employers for a place to live. Hershey’s town was modern. It had nice houses, large public buildings, and an electric railway system for easy transportation. Nearby farms provided the chocolate factory with fresh milk for its products.
BARBARA KLEIN: Milton Hershey and his company found a way to make large amounts of milk chocolate. The secret was using fat free milk with the seeds of cacao trees and heating them slowly. The Hershey Candy Company was on its way to success.
Most of the company’s workers loved Milton Hershey. He made it possible for them to earn good
wages and live well. The book “Hershey” says he sometimes shared the company’s financial
success with them. Yet Milton Hershey was not always fair. Writer Michael D’Antonio says not
everyone was happy living in a place where one man and his company attempted to control so much.
STEVE EMBER: Milton Hershey did not marry until he was over forty years old. He surprised his family when he married Catherine Sweeney in eighteen ninety-eight. Some members of his family did not approve of her. She was a Roman Catholic from New York State. Milton called her Kitty. The Hersheys first lived in Lancaster. They later moved to a large house near the factory. The land around the house was known for its many flowers and plants. Catherine Hershey was sick for much of her married life. She died in nineteen fifteen at the age of forty-two.
BARBARA KLEIN: The Hersheys were unable to have children, so they decided to help needy children by creating a school for them. Milton Hershey said the school had been his wife’s
idea. She reportedly wanted to provide a safe place for those in need of a good home and a better chance in life.
In nineteen-oh-nine, the Hersheys created the Hershey Industrial School for boys who had lost one or both parents. They established a special legal agreement, or trust, to provide money for the school. They gave nearly two hundred hectares of farmland to the trust.
At first, ten white boys attended the school. But more and more boys attended as time went on. The school provided the boys with a good education and farming skills.
STEVE EMBER: After his wife died, Milton Hershey gave shares of Hershey Chocolate Company stock worth sixty million dollars to the trust. This money made it possible for the school to expand. After Hershey died, the name of the school was changed to the Milton Hershey School. Later, the school opened its doors to boys and girls of all races and religions.
Today, the school serves children in financial and social need. It provides education, housing, food, clothing, medical care and recreation to about one thousand eight hundred students. The students are between the ages of four and eighteen. They live in more than one hundred fifty student homes. Each home has the latest technological equipment, including computers. A married couple lives in each home. They serve as parents to between eight and thirteen students. (MUSIC)
BARBARA KLEIN: Many Americans experienced economic hardship during the Great Depression of the nineteen thirties. But Milton Hershey put many people to work in the town by building a large hotel and a sports center.
He also created a not-for-profit organization to provide education and culture to the local townspeople. This organization continues to support the Hershey Theater and other cultural centers in the area.
In the early nineteen sixties, the Milton S. Hershey Foundation gave money and land to the Pennsylvania State University for a medical center. The Penn State Milton S. Hershey Medical Center opened in nineteen sixty-seven. Today it is a medical school, teaching hospital and research center.
STEVE EMBER: Milton Hershey died in nineteen forty-five. He left behind the company, the town, the school and the trust that supports it. At the time of his death, the company he built was said to have produced about ninety percent of all the milk chocolate made in the United States.
Today, Hershey, Pennsylvania is unlike any other town in the United States. For example, the streetlights are shaped like the candy called Hershey’s Kisses. The air often smells like
chocolate. Millions of people visit every year. They learn how chocolate is made at Hershey’s
Chocolate World. They stay at the Hotel Hershey.
They enjoy Hersheypark, an amusement park with more than sixty rides. They can also visit the Hershey museum and Hershey gardens. This special town calls itself “The Sweetest Place on
BARBARA KLEIN: This program was written by Nancy Steinbach. Lawan Davis was our producer. I’m Barbara Klein.
STEVE EMBER: And I’m Steve Ember. Our programs are online with transcripts and MP3 files at voaspecialenglish.com. And you can find us on Twitter, Facebook and YouTube at VOA Learning English. Join us again next week for PEOPLE IN AMERICA in VOA Special English.
65 Words and Their Stories: Money, Part 1
Now, the VOA Special English program WORDS AND THEIR STORIES.
I think people everywhere dream about having lots of money. I know I do. I would give anything to make money hand over fist. I would like to earn large amounts of money. You could win a large amount of money in the United States through lotteries. People pay money for tickets with numbers. If your combination of numbers is chosen, you win a huge amount of money – often in
the millions. Winning the lottery is a windfall.
A few years ago, my friend Al won the lottery. It changed his life. He did not have a rich family. He was not born with a silver spoon in his mouth. Instead, my friend was always hard up for cash. He did not have much money. And the money he did earn was chicken feed – very little.
Sometimes Al even had to accept hand-outs, gifts from his family and friends. But do not get me wrong. My friend was not a deadbeat. He was not the kind of person who never paid the money he owed. He simply pinched pennies. He was always very careful with the money he spent. In fact, he was often a cheapskate. He did not like to spend money. The worst times were when he was flat broke and had no money at all.
One day, Al scraped together a few dollars for a lottery ticket. He thought he would never strike it rich or gain lots of money unexpectedly. But his combination of numbers was chosen and he won the lottery. He hit the jackpot. He won a great deal of money.
Al was so excited. The first thing he did was buy a costly new car. He splurged on the one thing that he normally would not buy. Then he started spending money on unnecessary things. He started to waste it. It was like he had money to burn. He had more money than he needed and it was burning a hole in his pocket so he spent it quickly.
When we got together for a meal at a restaurant, Al paid every time. He would always foot the bill, and pick up the tab. He told me the money made him feel like a million dollars. He was very happy.
But, Al spent too much money. Soon my friend was down and out again. He had no money left. He was back to being strapped for cash. He had spent his bottom dollar, his very last amount. He did not even build up a nest egg. He had not saved any of the money.
I admit I do feel sorry for my friend. He had enough money to live like a king. Instead, he is back to living on a shoestring -- a very low budget. Some might say he is penny wise and pound foolish. He was wise about small things, but not about important things.