Frank Stasio

Host, "The State of Things"

Longtime NPR correspondent Frank Stasio was named permanent host of The State of Things in June 2006. A native of Buffalo, Frank has been in radio since the age of 19. He began his public radio career at WOI in Ames, Iowa, where he was a magazine show anchor and the station's News Director.

From there he went to National Public Radio, where he rose from associate producer to newscaster for All Things Considered. He left that job in 1990 to help start an alternative school in Washington, DC. Frank returned to NPR as a freelance news anchor, guest host of Talk of The Nation and other national programs, and host of special news coverage.

He also presents audio theater workshops for children and teachers and conducts radio journalism workshops for broadcasters in former Soviet-bloc countries. He lives in Durham.

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State of Things
12:40 pm
Thu September 29, 2011

Durham's Latest Star Turn

Main Street movie
Credit mainstreetthemovie.com

When film crews were in Durham a couple of years ago making the movie "Main Street," crowds turned out to glimpse stars including Colin Firth, Orlando Bloom, Ellen Burstyn and Patricia Clarkson. The movie gets its local premiere tomorrow night at Durham's Carolina Theatre. Host Frank Stasio talks with Yvette Bickoff, one of the film's producers, and Reyn Bowman, former head of the Durham Convention and Visitors Bureau, about the role the Bull City plays in "Main Street" and Durham's long show-biz career.

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State of Things
12:20 pm
Thu September 29, 2011

Make Your Own Danger

Alina Simone
Credit www.alinasimone.com

The life of indie musician Alina Simone has been anything but ordinary. After releasing an album sung entirely in Russian and attending a male strip show in Siberia, she is now breaking new territory as an author. Simone’s debut book, “You Must Go and Win,” is a collection of essays that chronicles her bizarre adventures through the music world. She’s also released a new CD called “Make Your Own Danger,” which was influenced by her time in North Carolina.

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State of Things
9:00 am
Wed September 28, 2011

The Modern Day HOA

Nearly 55 million Americans live in communities that are governed by homeowners associations, or HOAs. In exchange for dues, residents have access to neighborhood amenities like pools, parks and club houses. But more and more, HOAs are responsible for providing services and maintenance once offered by city and municipal governments – like trash pick-up and sewage system repairs.

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State of Things
12:56 pm
Tue September 27, 2011

Tar Heel Terrorists?

A complicated terrorism trial began unfolding in federal court in New Bern last week. Facing charges are Omar Hassan, 24, Ziyad Yaghi, 23, and Hysen Sherifi, 27. The three men are accused of belonging to a home-grown terrorist network, a web that stretches from the rural Wake County hamlet of Willow Spring to the Middle East. At the center of this web is a man named Daniel Boyd. Boyd pleaded guilty earlier this year to conspiring to provide material support to terrorists and conspiring to “murder, kidnap, injure or maim” people overseas. The charges carry a possible life sentence.

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State of Things
12:52 pm
Tue September 27, 2011

Wilco's Whole Love

Wilco
Credit www.wilcoworld.net

Alternative rock band Wilco is based in Chicago and has a worldwide following, but when they take the stage in Raleigh tonight, it will be in support of a North Carolina-based nonprofit called Farmer Foodshare. The band is donating a portion of its concert merchandise sales to the organization, which collects fresh, local food and monetary donations for hunger relief. Host Frank Stasio talks with Wilco lead guitarist Nels Cline and Margaret Gifford, founder and executive director of Farmer Foodshare, about their partnership to end food insecurity in North Carolina and Wilco’s new CD, “The Whole Love.”

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State of Things
12:28 pm
Tue September 27, 2011

Becoming Through Art

''Couple in Raccoon Coats'' (1932); James VanDerZee

The son of Jamaican immigrants, Kenneth Montague often felt like an outsider in his Windsor, Canada community. As he got older, he found himself drawn to art that explored self-identity and found a connection with the work of African-American photographers, in particular. Soon Montague, now a practicing dentist in Toronto, began collecting art. He has shared a portion of his impressive photography collection with Duke University’s Nasher Museum for a new exhibit called “Becoming: Photographs from the Wedge Collection.”

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State of Things
10:00 am
Mon September 26, 2011

Meet Dr. Jeffrey Brantley

Jeffrey Brantley

The key to greater peace and health is as simple as "mindfulness" — the act of paying attention on purpose. However, practicing mindfulness isn't as simple or as easy as it sounds. Dr. Jeffrey Brantley helps patients find their way to mindful living and a stronger connection between their minds and their bodies. He is the director of the Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction Program at Duke Integrative Medicine. He is the author of a number of books on mindful living, including "Calming Your Anxious Mind: How Mindfulness and Compassion Can Free You From Anxiety, Fear, and Panic" (New Harbinger Publications/2007) and, with co-author Wendy Millstine, the "Five Good Minutes" series (New Harbinger Publications), which offers bite-size mindfulness exercises to meet the needs of busy people. Host Frank Stasio talks with Dr. Brantley about his life and work.

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State of Things
12:38 pm
Fri September 23, 2011

30 Years of NC Pride

NC Pride
Credit ncpride.org

Attendees of this weekend's NC Pride parade and festival will have a lot on their minds, including North Carolina's proposed same-sex marriage amendment and the repeal of "Don't Ask, Don't Tell." The event has grown steadily since its beginning in 1981, and now represents one of the best opportunities for North Carolina's LGBT communities to get together for celebration and contemplation. Host Frank Stasio talks about some of the issues facing gays and lesbians today with Steven Petrow, author of the book, "Complete Gay & Lesbian Manners: The Definitive Guide to LGBT Life" (Workman Publishing Company/2011); Pam Spaulding, editor and publisher of the LGBT advocacy blog, “Pam’s House Blend”; Reverend Brett Webb-Mitchell, a former pastor and visiting faculty at North Carolina Central University; and Randy Jones, the cowboy from Village People and the keynote speaker at this weekend's NC Pride parade and festival.

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State of Things
12:18 pm
Fri September 23, 2011

Joan Soriano

Joan Soriano
Credit myspace.com/joansorianobachata

Joan Soriano's musical career began in the rural Dominican countryside when he made an instrument with a tin can and fishing line. Soon after, he and some of his 15 siblings formed a bachata band, a type of Dominican music they'd been hearing on the radio for years. Soriano left his family at age 13 to pursue a career in music and was eventually christened “The Duke of Bachata.” Today, he continues to perform with his family, traveling internationally to spread bachata to the world.

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State of Things
11:18 am
Thu September 22, 2011

The Nature of Consciousness

The nature of consciousness is hotly debated among philosophers, scientists and artists. We have thoughts, we feel, we remember the past and we anticipate the future. We think that is what it means to be conscious, but nobody can explain just exactly what that is or how it comes into being.

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