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Maryland Morning with host Tom Hall aired its final broadcast on September 16, 2016. Programs airing from 10/15 - 9/16/16 can be found below.  Tom is now hosting Midday which can be found here.

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The Open Society Institute, the non-profit group founded by billionaire philanthropist George Soros, is sponsoring a popular series of lectures called Talking About Race.  The lectures, presented at the Enoch Pratt Library's Central Library, have been delving into the nuanced and complex issue of race and its impact in our community.  The speaker on Tuesday, October 27th will be Dr. Elizabeth Nix, an assistant professor in the Division of Legal, Ethical and Historical Studies at the University of Baltimore, and one of the members of the steering committee of Baltimore ’68: Riots and Rebirth, a project that examined the causes and effects of the riots that took place here and across the country following the death of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. in April of 1968.   Dr. Nix joins host Tom Hall for a conversation about the history of racial segregation in Baltimore and the seeds of this spring's unrest.

Fences, by August Wilson, won the Pulitzer Prize for Drama and a Tony Award for Best Play when it debuted on Broadway in 1987.  When it was revived on Broadway 5 years ago, it won another Tony for Best Revival.  The play is in the middle of Wilson’s ten-part Pittsburgh Cycle, in which the playwright chronicles the African American experience with a trenchant and powerful voice unparalleled in American theater.  Fences opens at Baltimore’s Everyman Theater tonight.  Vincent Lancisi, the founding artistic director of the Everyman, and Clinton Turner Davis, who directs this fine production, talk with host Tom Hall about their unique staging of this August Wilson classic.   


Black bears are making a resurgence in Western Maryland. As late as the 1970s, they have been considered an endangered species in our state. But their population has since bounced back – so significantly, that the state has sanctioned annual black bear hunts since 2004.   Licensed hunts are  conducted in Western Maryland’s Garrett and Allegheny Counties to slow the growth of black bears to manageable levels. 

The African Proverb “It takes a Village” animates a lecture series developed in the wake of the riots and uprising in Baltimore last spring. The Black Mental Health Alliance is curating a series of talks on the unmet health needs in communities facing high rates of poverty and unemployment. The Alliance was founded in 1983. It provides training, resource referrals, and education on mental health issues. Their lecture series is called Baltimore Rising: Summoning The Village.

Next up on the series, tomorrow night, will be Dr. Gayle Porter. She is the Co-Director of The Gaston & Porter Health Improvement Center in Potomac, an organization that provides free health services for black women between the ages of 40 and 75. One of her most well-known projects is called Prime Time Sister Circles, a free, nation-wide support group that focuses on helping women of color deal with a spectrum of health challenges. Dr. Porter joins Tom in the studio, along with Sheri Brown who was a participant in a Baltimore Prime Time Sister Circle a decade ago.

Baltimore Jewelry Center Holds First Exhibition

Oct 21, 2015
Baltimore Jewelry Center

The Baltimore Jewelry Center in the new Centre building on North Avenue in the Station North A&E District is a resource for emerging and established metal and jewelry artists. It offers classes and studio space, and now, the Center is holding its first exhibition, featuring the work of three acclaimed artists with strong Baltimore roots, Shana Kroiz, Joyce Scott, and Betty Cooke. The exhibition also features some of the work of the current faculty at the Jewelry Center.

Joyce Scott and Betty Cooke join Tom in the studio. Their work is known internationally, and, like the Jewelry Center, their history in Baltimore includes the Maryland Institute College of Art. Betty graduated from MICA in 1946, and she taught there for more than 20 years. Joyce also received a degree from MICA, and went on to get a graduate degree from Mexico's Institute Allende. She has taught community arts in Baltimore and across the US, and she also performs as a singer and theater artist.

Reel Nepal

About 15% of Marylanders were born outside the United States. Maryland’s ethnic diversity spans people from all over the globe, and now, we’ll take a look at a holiday being celebrated by the Nepalese community in the Free State. The Nepali festival of Dashain is upon us. The multi-day festival wraps up next week and the main day of the festival is tomorrow.

Prem Raja Mahat joins Tom in the studio to tell us about Dashain. Prem has lived in Baltimore since the mid 1990’s, where he and his wife, Kabita, own a restaurant called The Nepal House in Mt. Vernon. Prem is also a folk music star in Nepal, where he had the top-selling album in the country for ten years straight.

JD Lasica // Flickr Creative Commons

It’s been 6 months since Freddie Gray died from spinal injuries while in Baltimore police custody, just one of a spate of police-involved killings of unarmed black men around the country in recent years that have shocked the nation. Freddie Gray’s death triggered peaceful protests and a wave of rioting in the city. The city is still on edge. The pending trials of the six Baltimore City police officers charged in the Freddie Gray case have kept the spotlight on a grievance that simmers in nearly every major US city, but runs especially hot in Baltimore: a police force that many believe is too quick to use force on its black citizens, too out of touch with the community, and too often allowed to act with impunity.

Last Friday, a day after protests erupted at City Hall over police commissioner Kevin Davis’ approval by a city council committee, a broad coalition of city youth, community and civil rights leaders stepped forward with a six-point plan to reform the Baltimore Police Department. Ben Jealous, the former president of the NAACP and now a senior fellow at the Center for American Progress, is lead author of the report called Toward Trust: Grassroots Recommendations for Police Reform in Baltimore. He joined Tom in the studio Friday, along with Kwame Rose, a Baltimore social activist, hip hop artist, blogger and public speaker who has been involved in the Freddie Gray and recent City Hall protests.

Linda Tanner // Flickr Creative Commons

WYPR was in the middle of our fall pledge drive when NASA announced it had discovered the existence of water on the planet Mars. Now that our members have figuratively “made it rain,” Nathan's going to focus on that Martian water. And planetary scientist Nathan Bridges of the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory is here to help. Bridges looks at Mars through the electric eyes of the Curiosity Mars Rover.

Nicholas Griner

You can’t miss it – the giant gash, the cavernous hole, in the living room wall of the set of Bad Dog at Olney Theatre Center. The hole is big enough to drive a car through. That’s exactly what happened a few days before the play begins.

Molly Drexler, a 40-year-old Hollywood screenwriter, fell – no, catapulted – off the wagon after a decade of sobriety. She plowed her Prius into her living room and ended up in the hospital.

Bad Dog, by Jennifer Hoppe-House, is part of the Women’s Voices Theater Festival. It’s also part of the American tradition of domestic dramas about addiction. Think Long Day’s Journey into Night or Days of Wine and Roses

Petur // Flickr Creative Commons

Podcasts have been exploding around the U.S. and with that explosion, people are finding all kinds of niche topics to talk about. Tom's guests have a podcast called Erasable, and it’s all about pencils. That's right, traditional pencils. In this day and age of mobile, digital offices that live in the cloud, their podcast focuses on wooden pencils, office spaces, typography… you get it.

One of the co-hosts, Johnny Gamber, lives here in Baltimore and joins Tom in the studio. Johnny has a PhD in philosophy and used to work in faculty development in higher education. Another host, Andy Welfle, who is a content strategist at Facebook, joins Tom on the phone from San Francisco. The third host is Tim Wasem, he’s currently teaching third grade and unfortunately can't join in on the discussion today.