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September 20, 2013 | By Robert Lloyd, Los Angeles Times Television Critic
"The Hollow Crown," which begins Friday on PBS under the venerable standard of its "Great Performances," comprises four Shakespeare plays, often called the Henriad as there is a King Henry (Henry IV, then Henry V) in each of them. It's too much to say that this is what television was made for - since it was also made for professional wrestling and situation comedies - but it is part of its original promise and compact, that ennobling great works of art (ennobling in their greatness, that is, not in any didactic way)
September 19, 2013 | By Diane Pucin
The Amgen Tour of California announced Thursday that its title sponsor, Amgen, the Santa Clarita-based company that conducts cancer-drug research, has re-upped its sponsorship. Kristin Bachochin, executive director of AEG Sports, which owns the race, said the sponsorship was a "multi-year" agreement. Among other race sponsors that have renewed contracts are Champions Systems, an apparel company that renewed for three years. Amgen's sponsorship contract had been up after the 2013 race and had raised questions about the cycling race's future.
August 28, 2013 | By Jim Peltz
Veteran NASCAR driver Bobby Labonte suffered three broken ribs in a cycling accident Wednesday morning and won't participate in this weekend's race in Atlanta, said his firm, Bobby Labonte Enterprises. The accident happened while Labonte, 49, was riding his bicycle near his home in Trinity, N.C. He was taken by ambulance to a hospital. Details of the accident were not disclosed. Labonte had no other injuries but was being held overnight for observation. Mike Bliss will replace Labonte this weekend in the No. 51 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series car fielded by Phoenix Racing, the announcement said.
August 8, 2013 | By Geoffrey Mohan, This post has been corrected, as indicated below.
Forests in Earth's northern latitudes have been thickened by migrating plant species and younger growth, driving a stronger gyration in the amount of carbon that cycles between land and the atmosphere each year, a new study suggests. The net rise in seasonal exchange of carbon between land and air cannot be explained solely by increased burning of fossil fuels, more wildfire or changes in the way the ocean cycles carbon, according to the study published online Thursday in Science.
August 1, 2013 | By Kenneth Turan, Times Film Critic
"Rising From Ashes" gives you more than you expect. Its story line is as positive and affirmative as the title indicates, but it turns out there are dramas going on in this documentary that you wouldn't initially suspect. Directed by T.C. Johnston and filmed over more than six years, "Ashes" tells the wildly improbable story of the Rwandan National Cycling Team, a.k.a. Team Rwanda, and a devoted American coach who says "they're terrified of me, and I wouldn't have it any other way. " The ashes of the title refers to the 1994 genocide in this African country, when Rwandans murdered one another at a horrific rate: As many as 1 million were killed over a roughly three-month period, which worked out to one person killed every 10 seconds for 100 days.
July 30, 2013 | By Mark Swed, Los Angeles Times Music Critic
SANTA BARBARA - Midori is a formal and famously unflappable violinist. I don't know whether she is fearless, but she may be that too. She came to our attention at age 14 in 1986 as a soloist for Leonard Bernstein in his "Serenade. " She broke two strings during the performance, but nothing fazed her. Bernstein bowed to her afterward in awe. She's as committed a musician as you will find. She never lets an audience down. But there can be a downside to her dedication and her striving for perfection.
July 23, 2013 | By Mikael Wood
Van Dyke Parks has a story for everything in his life, from the name of his pet schnauzer to the mug in which he served a visitor coffee on a recent morning at his antique-lined home in Pasadena. "You know where I got that cup?" asked Parks, an important figure on the margins of the Los Angeles pop scene since the mid-1960s, when he wrote allusive lyrics for the Beach Boys' ill-fated "Smile" album. The mug was emblazoned with the logo of the New York Flute Club, founded nearly a century ago by Georges Barrère, whose grandson Paul went on to play in the band Little Feat with one of Parks' best friends, the late Lowell George.
July 14, 2013 | By Ken Bensinger
Consumer Portfolio Services Inc. operates on a simple principle: Everyone needs a car. For more than two decades, the Irvine subprime auto lender, known as CPS, has helped finance vehicles for people who have less than perfect credit. Employing a network of more than 5,000 new- and used-car dealerships around the country, the company buys up loans after they're originated, then bundles them with thousands of other loans. The package of auto notes is rated by credit agencies, cut into pieces as securities and sold to investors.
July 12, 2013 | By Deborah Netburn, This post has been corrected. See note at the bottom for details.
Those of us who have been paying attention to the sun this year have been a little ... disappointed. 2013 was supposed to be the year of solar maximum -- the peak of an 11-year cycle when the number of sunspots that mar the sun's surface is at its highest. These sunspots, which are actually cool areas on the sun's surface caused by intense magnetic activity, are the sites of spectacular solar flares and CMEs, or coronal mass ejections, which can send billions of tons of solar material hurtling into space.
July 9, 2013 | By Mike DiGiovanna
CHICAGO - Mike Trout spent Monday with Albert Pujols and several other Angels teammates in a St. Louis suburb playing in the Pujols Family Foundation Celebrity Golf Classic. Although Pujols, who is nursing right-knee and left-foot injuries, did not play in the event, Trout played 18 holes and led his foursome to victory. Not once did Trout, an American League All-Star for the second straight year, worry that golfing in the middle of the season would mess up his baseball swing.
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