Lorde, the 17-year-old singer from New Zealand, has been number one on the Billboard’s pop singles for nine weeks with her single “Royals.” Last week, “Royals” was streamed 6.5 million times in the United States, and it has sold a total of 3.7 million tracks. The young songwriter’s single is performing notably better than singles by Enimem, Miley Cyrus and Katy Perry.


For one night only, NBC will air the new live production of “The Sound of Music,” starring Carrie Underwood. Beth McCarthy-Miller, who led “Saturday Night Live” broadcasts for 11 years and directed the “30 Rock” live broadcasts, will direct the telecast. The casting of Underwood as Maria has generated controversy, including many hate-tweets directed at her.


After the tragic death of actor Paul Walker, best known for his starring roles in the “Fast and Furious” movies, production on two of his less popular movies, “Hours” and “Brick Mansions,” will go ahead as planned. Filming has already wrapped on both movies, and “Brick Mansions” is expected to be released in the first quarter of next year.


A court in Moscow sentenced Pavel V. Dmitrichenko, a star ballet dancer with the Bolshoi Theater, to six years in a penal colony for ordering the acid attack that nearly blinded the Theater’s artistic director, Sergei Filin. The proceedings surrounding the attack have brought to light many rivalries and tensions within the Theater, as other dancers have taken sides—many in support of Dmitrichenko.

Visual Arts

Chinese political dissident and artist Ai Weiwei is planning to bring his art to Alcatraz Prison, drawing inspiration from the site to create a series of new artworks. He is working on this installation remotely, as he is still under house arrest by the Chinese government. The government has held onto his passport following Mr. Ai’s investigation into the unsuitable, government-constructed schools that led to thousands of deaths of schoolchildren in the 2008 Sichuan Earthquake.

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