Arts and entertainment briefs

Posted
Britain ends millions in funding for Ethiopia girl band

ADDIS ABABA, Ethiopia — Britain says it has ended millions of dollars in funding for an Ethiopian girl band, amid growing criticism at home of overseas aid. Yegna, sometimes called "Ethiopia's Spice Girls," addresses women's issues in the East African country.

A statement Friday from the Department for International Development says empowering women and girls remains a priority for Britain, "but we judge there are more effective ways to invest UK aid."

The move comes after reports of the band receiving another $6.3 million. The five-member band uses a radio show and music and drama productions to create awareness about forced marriage, violence, teen pregnancy and dropping out of school.

The Girl Effect project that launched Yegna confirms the British decision. Chief executive Farah Ramzan Golant says, "New ideas are often resisted and sometimes willfully misrepresented."



Whoopi Goldberg, North Carolina commissioner in online feud

WILMINGTON, N.C. — Comedian and talk-show host Whoopi Goldberg is being targeted by a North Carolina county commissioner over her comments about President-elect Donald Trump.

Local media reports New Hanover County Commission Chairman Woody White used Facebook to criticize Cape Fear Community College for hosting Goldberg's concert June 23. White asked if taxpayers were footing the bill and if the school was going to bring conservative performers to the campus.

White also criticized the school for "providing a venue for someone who just a few weeks ago was moving to Canada in protest to Trumps election? Terrible."

Goldberg responded on Twitter that she never said she would leave if Trump was elected.

The school said ticket sales will help cover the cost of Goldberg's appearance.



Jimmy Buffett show to stop in New Orleans, Houston, Chicago

NEW YORK — The Jimmy Buffett musical making its world premiere this year in California will make stops in New Orleans, Houston and Chicago before docking on Broadway.

"Escape to Margaritaville," combining Buffett's tunes with an original story by writers Greg Garcia and Mike O'Malley, will start grooving onstage in May 2017 at La Jolla Playhouse.

It then goes to New Orleans from Oct. 20-28, Houston from Oct. 31-Nov. 5 and Chicago from Nov. 9-Dec. 3. It hopes to reach Broadway by spring of 2018.

Buffett has written such beach-bum classics as "A Pirate Looks at Forty," ''Margaritaville," ''Changes in Latitudes, Changes in Attitudes" and "Cheeseburger in Paradise."



Kim Kardashian West breaks silence on Paris heist in teaser

NEW YORK — A tearful Kim Kardashian West breaks her silence on her Paris robbery in a new teaser for the family's reality show, telling two of her sisters her thoughts at the time: "They're going to shoot me in the back. There's no way out."

She's also seen on the short clip released Friday by E! ahead of the upcoming March season sobbing on the phone over husband Kanye West's hospitalization in November.

"Don't scare me, please. What's going on," Kardashian West said. "I think he really needs me, and I have to go home."

Kardashian West was bound, gagged and held at gunpoint in October inside a Paris hotel room by masked men who stole jewelry and escaped. She recalls the incident in the clip to sisters Khloe Kardashian and Kourtney Kardashian, adding: "It makes me so upset to think about it."

Her rapper husband was admitted to UCLA Medical Center in Los Angeles for sleep deprivation and exhaustion, later canceling his Saint Pablo tour. It was unclear where Kardashian West was at the time she learned the news.

The show, "Keeping Up with the Kardashians ," returns in March but no specific date has been announced.



Fact check: Trump's slam on Schwarzenegger's ratings

NEW YORK — Arnold Schwarzenegger is the latest victim of a Donald Trump Twitter attack. The president-elect took time Friday to note that the "Terminator" star was "swamped" in his "Celebrity Apprentice" debut "by comparison to the ratings machine, DJT."

"So much for being a movie star," Trump tweeted, continuing: "But who cares, he supported Kasich and Hillary."

Schwarzenegger tweeted back, urging Trump to work as hard for the American people as he did for his ratings.

Trump is right about the ratings, using the comparison he set up. His Jan. 4, 2004 debut on the reality show drew 18.49 million viewers, and Schwarzenegger's Monday bow as host was seen by 4.95 million. That's a 73 percent drop, according to the Nielsen company.

Two things are important to note: television shows almost always fade in popularity with time, and live viewership in general is down in an on-demand world.

The first episode of Trump's last season on "Celebrity Apprentice" in 2015 was seen by 6.81 million, down 63 percent from his own debut 11 years earlier, Nielsen said. For all television shows, viewership this season is off 23 percent from the 2003-04 season.

Schwarzenegger, the Republican former California governor, did indeed endorse Ohio Gov. John Kasich as Republican presidential nominee. In October, he said he would not be voting for Trump, urging Republicans to vote country over party. But he did not endorse Clinton or publicly say who he was voting for.

From a political standpoint, Trump's tweak of Schwarzenegger was understandable.

Business-wise, it's less so. Trump is still listed as an executive producer of "Celebrity Apprentice" and retains a financial stake in the NBC program. So he has an interest in seeing Schwarzenegger succeed, not fail.



Lyle Menendez talks prison life after parents' 1989 murders

IONE, Calif. — Lyle Menendez says his childhood prepared him "surprisingly well for the chaos of prison life."

Menendez and his younger brother, Erik, killed their wealthy parents, Jose and Kitty Menendez, at their Beverly Hills home in 1989. The brothers admitted the killings. They were convicted of murder in 1996 and sentenced to life terms without parole.

Lyle Menendez is now 48. He tells ABC News in a phone interview from a California prison that he maintains a close bond with his brother, even though he is being housed at a separate facility. He also reiterated claims of sexual abuse at the hands of his father.

Kitty Menendez's brother denied those claims to ABC News, saying there's "no indication" Jose Menendez abused his sons.

Lyle Menendez also says he's happily married, though he is barred from having conjugal visits with his wife.


















TALK TO US

If you'd like to leave a comment (or a tip or a question) about this story with the editors, please email us. We also welcome letters to the editor for publication; you can do that by filling out our letters form and submitting it to the newsroom.


Powered by Creative Circle Media Solutions