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      Entertainment & Pop Culture

      Entertainment and leisure activities have been a part of all cultures in one form or another since the ancient times, whether the activity in question involved participating in a dance performance, attending a Broadway show, going to a music festival, or watching a movie.
      Browse Subcategories

      Featured content, December 03, 2020

      When Dylan “Went Electric”
      More than 50 years after Bob Dylan shocked the folk music world by “going electric” people still don’t agree on what happened...
      Companion / Entertainment & Pop Culture
      Bob Dylan (b. 1941) playing guitar and harmonica into microphone. 1965.
      What’s That Sound?: 8 Intriguing Early Musical Instruments
      What exactly is a sackbut? Which early instruments require water? Does the rackett make a racket?
      List / Entertainment & Pop Culture
      Woman Playing a Theorbo to Two Men, oil on canvas by Gerard Terborch, 1667-1668. (Baroque Art)
      10 Incredible Uses for Eggs
      Eggs are for more than omelettes.
      #WTFact / Entertainment & Pop Culture
      A broken egg shows its contents, an egg yolk and egg white.
      Does Tomato Juice Really Neutralize Skunk Odor?
      Tomato juice is the traditional remedy to deal with skunk spray, but does it actually remove the smell?
      Demystified / Entertainment & Pop Culture
      Pair of baby skunks, side by side, on a fallen log.
      Film
      Film, series of still photographs on film, projected in rapid succession onto a screen by means of light. Because of the...
      Encyclopedia / Entertainment & Pop Culture
      Doctor Zhivago
      Theatre music
      Theatre music, any music designed to form part of a dramatic performance, as, for example, a ballet, stage play, motion picture,...
      Encyclopedia / Entertainment & Pop Culture
      Popular art
      Popular art, any dance, literature, music, theatre, or other art form intended to be received and appreciated by ordinary...
      Encyclopedia / Entertainment & Pop Culture
      Dance
      Dance, the movement of the body in a rhythmic way, usually to music and within a given space, for the purpose of expressing...
      Encyclopedia / Entertainment & Pop Culture
      Pieter Bruegel the Elder: Peasant Dance

      Entertainment & Pop Culture Quizzes

      Garlic. Allium sativum. Garlic cloves. Bulbs. Spice. Four heads of garlic. Two heads of garlic and peeled and unpeeled cloves.
      Garlic and Vinegar: Fact or Fiction?
      Is vinegar about half acetic acid? Does garlic battle methane? Sort fact from fiction and find out the bitter truth in this...
      Flower. Sunflower. Helianthus annuus. Petals. Field of sunflowers against a blue sky.
      General Food Knowledge: Fact or Fiction?
      From coffee to hops, turn up the heat in this study of food.
      Traditional yellow dijon mustard in a glass jar. spice, mustard seed, condiment, French gourmet food
      Pass the Mustard: Fact or Fiction?
      Is mustard an ingredient in traditional medicine? Is brown mustard hotter than white mustard? Put the squeeze on your knowledge...
      Legume. Pea. Pisum sativum. Peapod. Pod. Open peapod showing peas.
      This or That? Fruit vs. Vegetable
      Where is the line between fruit and vegetable really drawn? Test your knowledge with this quiz.
      the Beatles. Paul McCartney. Publicity still from Let It Be (1970) directed by Michael Lindsay Hogg starring The Beatles (John Lennon, Paul McCartney, George Harrison and Ringo Starr) a British musical quartet. film documentary rock music movie
      This or That? Lead Vocals: Lennon vs. McCartney
      Have an acute case of Beatlemania? Try to remember whether John or Paul took lead vocals on these Beatles hits.
      The Shining (1980) directed by Stanley Kubrick (1928-1999) Actor Jack Nicholson, left, with actress Shelley Duvall in a scene from the horror film. Motion picture director movie screenwriter
      This or That? Book First vs. Movie First
      Movie buff, bookworm, or both? Some of these famous titles were books first, and some were films first. Try to guess which...
      Fruit. Grapes. Grapes on the vine. White grape. Riesling. Wine. Wine grape. White wine. Vineyard. Cluster of Riesling grapes on the vine.
      Scientific Names of Edible Plants
      All of these plants are fairly common, but do you know their scientific names?
      Andy Griffith (left) and Ron Howard in the television series "The Andy Griffith Show" (1960-1968). (comedy)
      Griffin or Griffith?
      Are you good with names? Try to remember whether these famous folks are named Griffin or Griffith.
      Take the Money and Run (1969) Comedian and actor Woody Allen as Virgil Starkwell in a prison scene from the comedy mockumentary film directed and cowritten by Woody Allen. Allen's first leading role in a movie
      The World of Woody Allen
      What was Woody Allen’s first film? What instrument does the famous director play? Test your knowledge with this quiz.
      Seed. Nut. Walnuts. Juglans. Close-up of raw walnuts.
      Walnuts: Fact or Fiction?
      Nuts about walnuts? Find out how much you really know.
      Never Miss a Day in History
      Sign up for daily fun facts about this day in history, updates, and special offers delivered right to your inbox.

      Entertainment & Pop Culture Subcategories

      Grace Kelly. Actors
      Acting is a performing art that involves much more than just being able to cry on command. It requires the ability to react to imaginary stimuli and situations, to put oneself into another character, to create through performance a nonexistent event, and to repeat this performance at specified times and places. Actors exercise supreme control over their voice and their body and facial movements so as to effectively and believably convey the emotional experience of the characters they represent. Although theatrical productions, television, and movies each carry unique technical demands for the actor, skilled actors can move from one medium to another without a diminution of talent; celebrated actors such as Laurence Olivier, Judi Dench, Dustin Hoffman, Meryl Streep, and Viola Davis have been outstanding in both film and theatre.
      Articles
      King, Frank: Gasoline Alley Comic Strips & Superheroes
      Spider-Man, Batman, Wonder Woman, Iron Man: in the early 21st century, these superheroes rose to staggering global prominence. Movies featuring characters from Marvel Comics or DC Comics regularly drew in high global box office earnings, and the likenesses of these characters could easily be spotted adorning clothing, toys, backpacks, and more. Prior to the rise of the modern comic books from which these characters sprung, their precursor, the comic strip, held court. Early comic strips were produced in Europe before the form began appearing in American magazines in the late 19th century. In 1933 the first true comic books were released, marketed as giveaway advertising premiums. Five years later, DC Comics introduced Superman, the character who truly launched the superhero genre.
      Articles
      Egyptian dancing Dance
      Do you prefer tap dancing or ballet? Modern dance or line dances? The world of dance is expansive and covers a wide variety of styles and forms, ranging from simple spontaneous activity to formalized art or from a social gathering where everyone participates to a theatrical event with dancers performing before an audience. Dance is typically governed by the principles of aesthetic pleasure, self-expression, and entertainment, though these principles are not universally agreed upon by all dance groups. Regardless of ongoing debates about how to best define the art of dance, it remains true that dance is a universal language that can communicate emotions directly and sometimes more powerfully than words.
      Articles
      Walter Becker and Donald Fagen of Steely Dan Entertainment Awards & Festivals
      There may be no business like show business, but that doesn't mean that the people of show biz wouldn't like to be recognized with an award every once in a while. Honors like the Academy Awards, Golden Globes, Emmys, and Tonys recognize outstanding work in film, television, and theater, whereas honors such as the Grammy Awards and the Juno Awards celebrate excellence in music. Additionally, annual film festivals around the world honor exceptional works and performances with awards such as the Cannes film festival's Palme d'Or and the Berlin International Film Festival's Golden Bear. Music festivals such as the Montreux Jazz Festival (in Switzerland) and Lollapalooza (in Chicago) feature performances by a variety of artists and groups.
      Articles
      fish on a conveyor belt Food
      The necessity of food for survival is something that all humans have in common, but the trends of diet and food consumption can vary considerably from region to region. Find out more about the ingredients, dishes, and drinks that fuel people around the world.
      Articles
      Brees, Drew Leisure & Nightlife
      When it comes to free time, everyone has his or her own activity of choice. While some may like to repose with a nice game of bridge, poker, or chess, others may find bungee jumping or bullfighting to be more engaging, and still others would rather opt for hiking or archery. Luckily, there's no shortage of leisure activities available for those who have the time, resources, and inclination to pursue them.
      Articles
      Doctor Zhivago Movies
      There's always been a certain sense of magic surrounding the movies. Even though movies are technically just a series of still photographs on film, projected in rapid succession onto a screen to create the illusion of actual continuous movement, good movies are remarkably effective at conveying drama and evoking emotion, and they allow spectators to immerse themselves in the world of the film. Emerging at the end of the 19th century, this art form became one of the most popular and influential media and was perhaps the first truly mass form of entertainment. Without movies, we wouldn't have such iconic movie quotes as "We'll always have Paris" (Casablanca, 1942), "Here's Johnny!" (The Shining, 1980), and "Why so serious?" (The Dark Knight, 2008).
      Articles
      Woody Allen Movie, TV & Stage Directors
      Although directors are often "invisible" to the audience in plays, shows, and movies (Alfred Hitchcock and his film cameos being one notable exception), they play an important role by controlling the evolution of the theatrical or dramatic performance. When there are actors involved, the director often oversees and shapes their performances as well. Although the auteur theory holds that the director is the major creative force in a performance, the role of the director actually varies a great deal, not only according to the medium in question but also according to the extent to which he works with actors.
      Articles
      subcategory placeholder Music, Classical
      Rosin up your bows and get to work on those sonatas! Classical music utilizes a wealth of different musical forms, including the symphony, concerto, and fugue, among many others. It can be written for musical instruments (such as an orchestra or a string quartet) or for vocal groups (as in choral music). Most of the best-known composers of classical music worked during the last 600 years in the Western tradition; even people disinclined to seek out classical music may recognize passages from some of these composers' standout works, such as Ludwig van Beethoven's "Für Elise," Antonio Vivaldi's "The Four Seasons," and Georges Bizet's "Haba?era" (from the opera "Carmen").
      Articles
      Art Tatum, c. 1947. Music, Contemporary Genres
      Hey, what's that sound? Music pervades many aspects of contemporary everyday life; it appears in commercials, blares from speakers in stores and restaurants, accompanies commuters on the way to work, and energizes gym-goers when their motivation is flagging. Music festivals such as Lollapalooza (in Chicago) and the Sziget Festival (in Budapest) attract enormous crowds by featuring an extensive lineup of musicians over several days. Today's music can be divided into any number of categories and subcategories, encompassing genres such as pop, jazz, rock, alternative, country, electronic, rap, and much more.
      Articles
      time signature Music Theory
      Why do the opening notes of Beethoven's famous "Symphony No. 5" sound strong and driving rather than leisurely and soothing? The answer can be found by turning to music theory, the study of the concepts and compositional methods involved in the creation of music. Music theory examines musical qualities such as timbre, tone, pitch, and texture, as well as compositional elements such as rhythm, dynamics, tempo, and much more. And do you have perfect pitch like Mozart? If you do you can usually hear a melody, then sit at the piano and tickle the ivories or strum the strings of a guitar and play it by ear. A song—or any piece of music—is made up of two or more parts, or sections, which together create the whole of the composition. A ritornello, for instance, is a melodic sequence that “returns” multiple times throughout the composition. Harmony, the musical scale, how chords are formed, and the musical notation necessary to allow other musicians to play a piece of music are all parts of the musical education you’ll need to be a pro in the field.
      Articles
      African log amadinda xylophone; property of the Uganda Museum, Kampala Musical Instruments
      Not everyone is gifted with an exceptional singing voice. That's where instruments come in! The principal types of musical instruments are percussion, stringed, keyboard, wind, and electronic instruments. Musical instruments have been used since the earliest times, and modern technology has in many cases simplified or improved the construction of instruments, while mechanization has made possible the mass production of instruments of all kinds. It remains true, however, that the production of an instrument of the highest quality still demands the highest degree of individual skill.
      Articles
      Jean Stapleton and Carroll O'Connor in All in the Family Television & Radio
      Is it true that video killed the radio star? When broadcast radio came into prominence early in the 20th century, it delighted the public by providing news and entertainment with an immediacy that had been unimaginable beforehand. Radio developed into the first electronic mass medium, but broadcast radio's popularity was eclipsed by television, which appeared about 1945. Television, which was originally conceived as a potential medium for education and interpersonal communication, ultimately evolved into a vibrant broadcast medium that offered a diverse slate of news and entertainment to people all over the world. By the early 21st century, the Internet made it possible to watch TV anywhere, anytime, on small portable devices.
      Articles
      subcategory placeholder Movie, TV & Stage Development & Production
      Even before the director can first call “Action!,” there’s a lot that must be done to get a movie, television show, or theatrical production ready for production or rehearsal. Screenwriters, producers, and distributors all come into play before a project moves on to the process of hiring the cast and crew, designing and building sets and costumes, creating storyboards, and more. Cinematographers, animators, and special-effects artists are among those who may be called upon to shape the look and feel of a production, ensuring its maximal success when it hits theaters or screens.
      Articles
      bugaku performance Theater
      There's no business like show business! Nothing quite matches the immediacy and electricity of a live dramatic performance, a fact which may help explain why the art form has persevered from its ancient origins up through the present day. During the 20th century, live theater demonstrated an unexpected tenacity in the face of tough competition from film, television, video, the Internet, and other media. Some works can be given full expression only by stage representation; this is why, despite economic challenges, limited technical resources and funding, and the logistical problems of touring, live theater is likely to continue captivating audiences, as it has done for centuries.
      Articles
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