Imagine that you're a composer. Imagine getting the commission to write a song that will allow family members to face the death of a loved one. David Lang had to do just that when a hospital in Garches, France, asked him to write music for their morgue, or 'Salle Des Departs.'
It might seem hyperbole to claim, as many Wagnerites do, that The Ring Cycle is 'The Greatest Work of Art Ever.' But it's permeated our culture from Star Wars to Bugs Bunny to J.R.R. Tolkien. On this Radiolab/WNYC Special, we explore the impact and influence of Wagner's Ring Cycle on the Metropolitan Opera's 2004 Presentation.
In 1903, Wilbur and Orville Wright managed to coax their spruce biplane off the North Carolina sand for twelve seconds, and those twelve seconds started a revolution in flight. We examine the human desire to fly, and how getting flight changed us.
How would you describe life on Earth to an alien? In 1977, the Voyager spacecraft launched into space. And with it, went the Golden Record-- a sort of time capsule, a collection of sounds and images that would describe life on Earth to whomever or whatever might find it.
In spring of 2006, Jad and Robert took the stage at the SoHo Apple Store to talk about the making of Radiolab. Jad geeks out on digital sound editing, and Robert raises editorial questions. And film editor joins them to Walter Murch weigh in on storytelling.
We ponder our insignificant place in the universe, and boldly go after stories of romance & cynicism in Outer Space.
We explore the line between music and language, and turn to physics and biochemistry to ask how sound becomes feeling.
What happens when there is no leader? We look at the bottom-up logic of cities, Google, and even our brains.
For thousands of years philosophers have debated the essence of morality. Now, neuroscientists may have answers.
Fighting the inevitable march of time -- or at least the common sense view of it.
The modern search for the fountain of youth, and personal stories of witnessing death.
Remembering is a tricky, unstable business. This hour: a look behind the curtain of how memories are made...and forgotten.
Blood-thirsty Romans, frozen carcasses, wild jaguars, and a question: how do you build a better cage?
Birds do it, bees do it...yet science still can't answer the basic question: why do we sleep?
The "mind" and "self" were formerly the domain of philosophers & priests. But this hour, neurologists lead the charge.
Stories of stress -- from a singer who loses her voice, to an author caught in a body that never grew up.