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Andrew Limbong

Andrew Limbong is a reporter and producer for NPR's Arts Desk, where he reports, produces, and mixes arts and culture pieces of all kinds. Previously, he was a producer and director for Tell Me More. He originally started at NPR in 2011 as an intern for All Things Considered.

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And finally today, a young star is spelling her way into the history books.

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UNIDENTIFIED PERSON #1: The word is murraya.

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Rapper, DJ and pop culture figure Biz Markie has died. A statement from a representative said that Biz created a legacy of artistry that will forever be celebrated by his industry peers and his beloved fans. He was 57 years old. He was known as the clown prince of hip-hop, bringing a charming off-key sense of humor to the genre. NPR's Andrew Limbong has this appreciation.

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TIM WESTWOOD: Biz, how did you get your name, brother?

LGBTQ characters took up a little more space in the movies in 2020. According to GLAAD's annual Studio Responsibility Index, there was an increase in the percentage of films with LBGTQ characters. A good portion of these were serious, substantial characters, too — 80% of these movies had LGBTQ characters with more than 10 minutes of screen time. The group found that the percentage of LGBTQ characters of color also rose.

The Chicago church that hosted Emmett Till's funeral. The theater in Cleveland that is the oldest African American producing theater in the country — where Langston Hughes once had an in-house apartment. The sole remaining Black owned and built historic building along Southeastern Ohio River Valley's Underground Railroad corridor.

Copyright 2021 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

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Updated July 14, 2021 at 8:02 PM ET

A Los Angeles Superior Court judge has cleared Britney Spears to hire her own lawyer in the long drawn-out battle over her conservatorship. And the pop star has chosen Mathew S. Rosengart, a prominent Hollywood lawyer and former federal prosecutor, to take up her case.

Wednesday is set to be an important day in court for Britney Spears. Since her searing open testimony describing life under her conservatorship, there've been some big changes to her legal situation. A wealth management company, Bessemer Trust, which had been set to take over as co-conservator for Spears' estate, requested to resign.

Samuel Ingham III, the court-appointed lawyer who's represented Britney Spears in her conservatorship, has requested to resign from that role, according to papers filed in Los Angeles County Superior Court today.

Delia Fiallo, the author and screenwriter whose peers and fans often called her the "mother of the telenovela," has died. She was 96 years old. Her daughter, Delia Betancourt, confirmed to NPR that Fiallo died Tuesday, in her home in Miami, Fla., just days before her July 4 birthday.

Fiallo scripted hugely popular dramas such as Cristal, Lenoela, and Rafaela during the 1970s and 1980s, which were broadcast throughout Latin America.

A federal judge has sentenced Allison Mack to 3 years in prison, along with a $20,000 fine, for her involvement in the NXIVM case.

Mack was one of the lead deputies and recruiters for NXIVM — the cult group that masqueraded itself as a self-help organization. The group's leader, Keith Raniere, was sentenced to 120 years in prison in October for racketeering and sex trafficking charges.

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