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Changes coming to PBS' 'NewsHour'

December 04, 2009

Changes on 'NewsHour'

PBS' "The NewsHour with Jim Lehrer" is relaunching Monday as simply "PBS NewsHour" as the evening newscast turns its focus to merging its online and broadcast operations.

Correspondents such as Hari Sreenivasan, a former reporter for CBS and ABC, will file dispatches for the program's website and nightly program.

In addition, Lehrer, the program's longtime anchor, will be joined at the desk by a rotating series of partners: senior correspondents Gwen Ifill, Judy Woodruff and Jeffrey Brown.

-- Matea Gold Pugh + Scarpa is honored

Pugh + Scarpa Architects, which has locations in Santa Monica and North Carolina, was named firm of the year Thursday by the American Institute of Architects.

The AIA said in its citation that the award is based on the firm's 35 years of "consistent excellent work, including its seamless blending of architecture, art and craft."

Among the firm's local projects are the Solar Umbrella home in Venice, the Orange Grove lofts in West Hollywood and the Colorado Court housing project in Santa Monica.

Pennsylvania-based architect Peter Bohlin won the AIA's Gold Medal, which is awarded to an architect for his or her "exceptional contextual use of materials."

-- David Ng Strike shuts Louvre, palace

The Louvre Museum and the royal palace at Versailles were closed Thursday because of a French museum workers' strike that appears to be gathering steam.

Frustrated tourists gathered outside the landmark pyramid in the courtyard of the Louvre, blocked off by workers. They are protesting government plans not to replace half of retiring public servants, which will affect the national museums.

The strike began at the Pompidou Center for modern art last month and workers at other national museums joined in Wednesday.

Kamal Hesni of the CFDT-Culture union said labor leaders voted to continue the strike today.

-- associated press First Poe book to be auctioned

When a teenage Edgar Allan Poe moved to Boston to find work in 1827, he was eager to launch his literary career, reestablish his roots in the city of his birth and distance himself from his foster father in Richmond, Va.

The result was his first book, "Tamerlane and Other Poems," virtually unnoticed when published but now one of the world's rarest and most sought-after texts.

Experts at Christie's auction house say it could sell for a record price for American literature.

"This is known as the black tulip of U.S. literature," said Francis Wahlgren, head of books and manuscripts at Christie's in New York, which expects to get $500,000 to $700,000 for the book today. To the best of Wahlgren's recollection, the record is $250,000 for a copy of "Tamerlane" sold at auction nearly two decades ago.

No more than 40 or 50 copies of "Tamerlane" were printed, and only 12 remain. Poe's name doesn't even grace the cover of the 40-page book, which is credited to "a Bostonian."

-- associated press Rolling Stones' Wood arrested

Aging rocker Ronnie Wood of the Rolling Stones was released on bail Thursday after being arrested on suspicion of domestic assault.

Wood, 62, known for his stinging guitar riffs and raucous private life, was picked up by police Wednesday evening near his home in Esher in southern England.

The arrest comes on the heels of Wood's highly publicized divorce last month. His marriage collapsed after he started dating a young Russian woman.

-- associated press Alarm disrupts Wonder debut

Pop star Stevie Wonder had a hotter debut Thursday as a U.N. peace envoy than he expected.

The singer-songwriter was in the middle of his acceptance speech as a prestigious Messenger of Peace and advocate for the world's estimated 650 million people with disabilities when a fire alarm went off in the basement conference room at U.N. headquarters in New York.

After six long alarm blasts, Wonder cracked: "I'm trying to figure out a new melody!"

The ceremony was moved to a higher floor. U.N. deputy spokeswoman Marie Okabe said the alarm was triggered by smoke from construction work in the second basement level.

-- associated press Julian Lennon honors Lucy

Julian Lennon is planning to release a song this month called "Lucy," which pays tribute to the late childhood friend of his who inspired Lennon's father to write the Beatles classic "Lucy in the Sky With Diamonds," Billboard.com reports.

The song will be part of a four-track EP that also features music by James Scott Cook. It will be out Dec. 15.

Lucy Vodden died in September of complications from lupus. Proceeds from the new song will go to the St. Thomas' Lupus Trust in Great Britain and the Lupus Foundation of America.

-- from a times staff writer

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