Texas Standard for Dec. 26, 2023: The best of the year in arts & culture

From ‘The Last of Us’ to the Eras Tour, we’re taking a look at some of the biggest stories of 2023.

By Texas StandardDecember 26, 2023 8:30 am,

Here are the stories on Texas Standard for Tuesday, Dec. 26, 2023:

‘The Lady Bird Diaries’ tells a first lady’s story in audio and on film

During the turbulent 1960s, with President Lyndon Johnson mired in the Vietnam War and pushing for new civil rights and voting rights laws at home, many observers didn’t realize that Lady Bird Johnson had become one of the most influential first ladies to occupy the White House. And she chronicled it all in audio diaries that are now the basis for a film from director Dawn Porter.

She told us about the film in March, along with Julia Sweig, who chronicled the first lady’s time in Washington in a book and podcast.

Taylor Swift fans in Texas were ready for the Eras Tour

Taylor Swift hadn’t toured since 2018, and in the five years since then she’s released four LPs and re-recorded several older albums. So it’s hard to overstate how big of a deal the Eras Tour is for her fans. Six of Swift’s first dozen or so shows were in Texas: three in Arlington and three in Houston.

The Texas Standard’s Sarah Asch reported on how Texas Swifties prepared.

Some tips before you saddle up to attend your first rodeo

Rodeo season is a big deal in the Lone Star State. But what if you’ve never been to a rodeo and need some help figuring out how to get started? We’ve got you covered.

Joe Dodge, who has been competing in the calf roping event for over 20 years, joined the Standard in March to share some tips.

Gabriel Luna on “The Last of Us”

Gabriel Luna is no stranger to Hollywood’s action scene: He has been a superhero, a terminator and a CIA agent. Now, the native Austinite has taken on a post-apocalyptic role based on the award-winning video game “The Last of Us.”

Luna spoke to the Texas Standard about his role in the HBO series ahead of its premiere in January.

Teaching Greek and Roman texts in the Jim Crow era

During the Jim Crow era, a debate emerged among Black leaders and educators: is it better to teach trade skills or to teach the classics and study ancient Greek and Roman texts? Now, modern researchers are highlighting the contributions of Black Texans at the center of the debate. The Standard’s Sean Saldana reports.

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