Ann Heppermann

Ann Heppermann is a Brooklyn-based, independent radio/multimedia documentary producer and educator.  A Peabody Award-winning producer, she also has received awards from the Associated Press, Edward R. Murrow, and Third Coast International Audio Festival. From 2010-11, she was a Rosalynn Carter Mental Health Journalism fellow, reporting on perinatal depression.  In 2011, she was named a United States Artists (USA) Fellow with Kara Oehler. She is also a faculty member teaching radio writing and radio drama at Sarah Lawrence College.

Ann Heppermann appears in the following:

American Icons: Untitled Film Stills

Friday, October 11, 2013

In the 1980s, Cindy Sherman began taking self-portraits that showed her in costumes and scenarios that looked just like movie stills, although they were her own inventions. In a media-saturated age, Untitled Film Stills have influenced a generation of artists as well as pop stars who play with identity as a kind of performance.

Slideshow: Cindy Sherman's Untitled Film Stills

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American Icons: Native Son

Friday, September 06, 2013

The story of a young man in the ghetto who turns to murder was an overnight sensation. But some think Native Son exploited the worst stereotypes of black youth. We trace the line from Bigger Thomas to Notorious B.I.G., and visit a high school drama class acting out Native Son, and struggling to grasp the racism their grandparents experienced.

Video: Author Richard Wright's screen test for the film adaptation of Native Son

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David Brooks: What Our Words Tell Us

Friday, August 09, 2013

New York Times columnist David Brooks recently wrote that our word choice proves that we’ve become a more individualistic society.  Brooks cited Ngram studies which showed that in the last 50 years, words like “self” and “unique” have been on the rise while “community" and "share” ...

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Big Data and Culturomics

Friday, August 09, 2013

Big Data — and how we use it — is changing the way we understand our culture and history.  Research scientists Erez Lieberman Aiden and Jean Baptiste Michel teamed up with Google to create the (highly addictive) Ngram Viewer: it sifts through millions of digitized books and charts the ...

Send us your Big Data discoveries

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Eric Fischl Bares His Soul (Explicit)

Friday, June 28, 2013

When Eric Fischl was first described as a painter of the suburbs, it wasn’t meant as a compliment, but he tells Kurt Andersen, “I wear it proudly.” Fischl grew up on Long Island, outside New York City, and then in Phoenix. He finds the suburbs artistically fertile ground. In his memoir Bad Boy ...

Slideshow: Eric Fischl's Paintings


Carl Hiaasen’s Sunshine Noir

Friday, June 21, 2013

For someone who says he’s angry, Carl Hiaasen seems awfully nice. “A lot of the funniest writers I know, funniest people I know, have a deep vein of anger. It’s a sense of ironic outrage at things. They’re not happy-go-lucky people. They’re writing for a reason. If you go back, Mark Twain ...

Bonus Track: An excerpt from Bad Monkey

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Hollywood's Bad-Girl Summer

Friday, June 14, 2013

Since there have been movies, there have been bad girls. But girls are really going wild this movie season. Spring Breakers has bikini-clad college students (played by former Disney stars) shooting up fast food joint. Violet and Daisy’s protagonists are teen assassins who kill for cash to buy ...

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Tim Minchin and Matilda

Friday, June 07, 2013

At this year’s Tony Awards, a show about a strange little girl with horrible parents was nominated for no fewer than twelve awards — practically every category that it was eligible for. Matilda is based on Roald Dahl’s novel, and set to music by the Australian songwriter and comedian Tim Minchin ...

Video: Tim Minchin performs "When I Grow Up"

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Sarah Sze and the Venice Biennale

Friday, May 24, 2013

The Venice Biennale is like the Olympics of the contemporary art world. Every two years countries around the world send their best and brightest to an art fair that nearly takes over Venice. This year the honor belongs to the installation artist Sarah Sze, who builds intricate gravity-defying ...

Slideshow: Sarah Sze’s Installations

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Alex Timbers and Here Lies Love

Friday, May 17, 2013

The director Alex Timbers is young, but in the last few years he’s already carved out a unique niche as a director of historical mashup musicals. He directed Gutenberg! The Musical! as well as the critically acclaimed Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson. Timbers is the director of a new show, Here Lies Love ...

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Aha Moment: Mary Karr's "Entering the Kingdom"

Friday, May 10, 2013

Ten years ago, Beth Greenspan put a poem in her wallet that she’s carried ever since. Her son was just on the verge of adolescence, and she was wistful. “I noticed that his wrists were starting to get thicker, his hands were starting to look bigger. His hand was almost the size of my own ...

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Isabella Rossellini's Mammas

Friday, May 10, 2013

Isabella Rossellini’s Mammas is an unsentimental look at motherhood — very unsentimental. The mothers in this new series of film shorts take multiple husbands, abandon their young, even cannibalize them. And they take maternal self-sacrifice to an extreme, letting their hungry young devour ...

Video: "Wasp"

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Darcy James Argue's Big Band

Friday, May 03, 2013

Darcy James Argue’s new album Brooklyn Babylon is one of the most anticipated jazz albums of the year. But Argue wondered if he should even record it. “I thought long and hard whether this would work as a record,” he tells Kurt Andersen, because Brooklyn Babylon was originally a score ...


Are Kids with Imaginary Friends More Creative?

Friday, April 26, 2013

Lots of kids have imaginary friends. Marjorie Taylor, a psychology professor at the University of Oregon, has been looking at imaginary friends and the children who have them. “They tend to be more social, less shy, and do better on tasks which require you to take the perspective ...

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Fiona Shaw and The Testament of Mary

Friday, April 19, 2013

The Irish actress and director Fiona Shaw stars as Mary, the mother of Jesus, in a one-woman show opening this week on Broadway. The Testament of Mary, which Colm Tóibín based on his own novel, presents not the saintly exemplar of maternal love familiar from religious paintings ...

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Meg Wolitzer and The Interestings

Friday, April 12, 2013

Meg Wolitzer’s latest novel, The Interestings, is both a coming-of-age and coming-of middle-age story. Six teenagers meet at a performing arts camp in the Berkshires — the kind of place where kids put on Beckett plays — and become lifelong friends. It’s the summer of 1974 ...

Bonus Track: Meg Wolitzer's 3 for 360

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Jeremy Irons: Perfecting the Bad Guy

Friday, April 12, 2013

“You can’t play a bad guy thinking, ‘I’m a bad guy,’” Jeremy Irons tells Kurt Andersen. “You’ve got to say, ‘Why does he make that choice to behave in that way?’” It’s all about playing the gray areas. Irons knows from despicable; for 40 years, he’s been our best bad guy ...

Bonus Track: Jeremy Irons' 3 for 360

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The Flame Alphabet

Friday, March 08, 2013

William S. Burroughs famously said that “language is a virus.” Novelist Ben Marcus took Burrough's line as inspiration for The Flame Alphabet. In the book, the language of children has become literally poisonous to adults, and a married couple with a teenage daughter is faced ...

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Does Your Zombie Have Rabies?

Friday, March 08, 2013

Long before science explained rabies, the virus showed up in folklore and literature. "The vampire myth, the werewolf myth, and the zombie myth," Bill Wasik tells Kurt Andersen, "are all saliva-born infections that manifest as a contagious animal essence. Rabies is the only thing ...

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What Going Viral Means

Friday, March 08, 2013

Computer viruses emerged in the 1980s. But in the internet era, we decided not to beat viruses, but to join them. “Going viral” became the goal of any piece of content, from a movie to a Facebook post. Bill Wasik is the author of And Then There’s This: How Stories Live and Die in Viral Culture ...

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