Neda Ulaby Neda Ulaby reports on arts, entertainment, and cultural trends for NPR's Arts Desk.
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Neda Ulaby

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Doby Photography/NPR

Neda Ulaby

Reporter, Arts Desk

Neda Ulaby reports on arts, entertainment, and cultural trends for NPR's Arts Desk.

Scouring the various and often overlapping worlds of art, music, television, film, new media and literature, Ulaby's radio and online stories reflect political and economic realities, cultural issues, obsessions and transitions, as well as artistic adventurousness— and awesomeness.

Over the last few years, Ulaby has strengthened NPR's television coverage both in terms of programming and industry coverage and profiled breakout artists such as Ellen Page and Skylar Grey and behind-the-scenes tastemakers ranging from super producer Timbaland to James Schamus, CEO of Focus Features. Her stories have included a series on women record producers, an investigation into exhibitions of plastinated human bodies, and a look at the legacy of gay activist Harvey Milk. Her profiles have brought listeners into the worlds of such performers as Tyler Perry, Ryan Seacrest, Mark Ruffalo, and Courtney Love.

Ulaby has earned multiple fellowships at the Getty Arts Journalism Program at USC Annenberg as well as a fellowship at the Knight Center for Specialized Journalism to study youth culture. In addition, Ulaby's weekly podcast of NPR's best arts stories. Culturetopia, won a Gracie award from the Alliance for Women in Media Foundation.

Joining NPR in 2000, Ulaby was recruited through NPR's Next Generation Radio, and landed a temporary position on the cultural desk as an editorial assistant. She started reporting regularly, augmenting her work with arts coverage for D.C.'s Washington City Paper.

Before coming to NPR, Ulaby worked as managing editor of Chicago's Windy City Times and co-hosted a local radio program, What's Coming Out at the Movies. Her film reviews and academic articles have been published across the country and internationally. For a time, she edited fiction for The Chicago Review and served on the editing staff of the leading academic journal Critical Inquiry. Ulaby taught classes in the humanities at the University of Chicago, Northeastern Illinois University and at high schools serving at-risk students.

A former doctoral student in English literature, Ulaby worked as an intern for the features desk of the Topeka Capital-Journal after graduating from Bryn Mawr College. She was born in Amman, Jordan, and grew up in the idyllic Midwestern college towns of Lawrence, Kansas and Ann Arbor, Michigan.

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Phil Spector in the studio in an undated photo. Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images hide caption

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Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images

Phil Spector, Legendary Record Producer And Convicted Murderer, Has Died At 81

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In the long-running "Up" series, Michael Apted began with a group of British children, and checked in with them every seven years as they aged. 63 Up came out in 2019, and he said he hoped to release 84 Up at age 99. He's pictured above at the Dubai International Film Festival in December 2012. Andrew H. Walker/Getty Images for DIFF hide caption

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Andrew H. Walker/Getty Images for DIFF

F. Scott Fitzgerald, Virginia Woolf, Ernest Hemingway, Franz Kafka and many more authors and artists have 1925 works entering the public domain on January 1. Above, a first edition of The Great Gatsby at the London International Antiquarian Book Fair in London in 2013. Oli Scarff/Getty Images hide caption

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Oli Scarff/Getty Images

A new leash on life: The ASPCA's Behavioral Rehabilitation Center in Weaverville, N.C., helps traumatized dogs learn to trust humans again. ASPCA hide caption

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ASPCA

1 Of A Kind Shelter Helps Traumatized Dogs Learn To Trust Humans Again

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A Sugar & Spice Holiday, starring Jacky Lai and Tony Giroux, is Lifetime's first Chinese American Christmas romantic comedy. Kailey Schwerman/Courtesy of Lifetime 2020 hide caption

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Kailey Schwerman/Courtesy of Lifetime 2020

Holiday Rom-Coms Go Beyond Diversity To Center New Christmas Stars

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Olivia Newton-John as Sandy and John Travolta as Danny in the 1978 movie Grease, which was added this year to the National Film Registry at the Library of Congress. Library of Congress hide caption

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Library of Congress

G.I. Woe: Mattel's Flushin' Frenzy sends a brown plastic poop flying into the air. It's pictured above at Toy Fair in New York in February 2018. Mark Lennihan/AP hide caption

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Mark Lennihan/AP

Who Cares About The No. 1 Toy When You Could Have No. 2?

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Stacey Mei Yan Fong has been baking her way across the United States: Clockwise from upper left, a baked Alaska pie, Utah's funeral potato pie, Nevada's all you can eat buffet pie, South Carolina's peach pie, Ohio's buckeye pie, Iowa's s'mores pie, Missouri's frozen custard pie, and Minnesota's corn dog casserole pie. Stacey Mei Yan Fong hide caption

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Stacey Mei Yan Fong

An Ode, À La Mode: 1 Baker Savors America, Creating 50 Pies For 50 States

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An archival postcard of the Grove Park Inn in Asheville, N.C., where much of the novel Even As We Breathe is set. Smith Collection/Gado/Getty Images hide caption

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Smith Collection/Gado/Getty Images

'Even As We Breathe': A First Novel From A Teacher Who Writes For Her Students

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Jasmine Surti (far right) and three generations of her family celebrating Thanksgiving in Philadelphia in 2018. From left, front: Louise Aucott, Gabe Aucott with Juniper Chamberlin, Rachel Aucott, Sandhya Surti, Anjali Surti, Hemant Surti, Jasmine Surti 2nd row, starting from center: Steve Hoenstine, Aimee Landau, Mike Aucott Top: Ezra Landau. Aimee Landau/Jasmine Surti hide caption

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Aimee Landau/Jasmine Surti

How To Plan – And Even Be Grateful – For A Socially Distanced Thanksgiving

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Anya Taylor-Joy plays a swaggering chess prodigy in the new Netflix hit, The Queen's Gambit. It's success may lead to a shortage of chess sets this holiday season. Phil Bray/Netflix hide caption

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Phil Bray/Netflix

Can't Find A Chess Set? You Can Thank 'The Queen's Gambit' For That

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Cecilia Chiang poses in her kitchen in 2014. She told NPR that when she first arrived in the U.S., she was shocked by the food most Americans considered to be Chinese. Eric Risberg/AP hide caption

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Eric Risberg/AP

Cecilia Chiang, Who Revolutionized American Chinese Food, Dies At 100

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