The Monocle Minute

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The week ahead, opportunities and observations
Saturday 8 September 2018

Media

Image: Getty Images

Second ‘Interview’

The Andy Warhol-founded magazine that was dead and buried a few months ago has made a bold return.

Fans of the printed word will be pleased to learn that less than four months after claiming bankruptcy, Interview magazine is back on newsstands with a bold cover and a wealth of talent. Our favourite large-format monthly has been taken over by Kelly Brant (the daughter of former owner Peter Brant), and its September issue boasts an all-star list of contributors. They include Mel Ottenberg (stylist to Rhianna) as creative director, design by Richard Turley (famous for the redesign of Bloomberg Businessweek) and a cover story shot by Collier Schorr. Let’s hope that the business plan is watertight and that this adored title is around for years to come.

Military

Image: Getty Images

Protest songs

Should K-pop stars be spared army time in favour of entertaining legions of worldwide fans?

In South Korea, two years of military service is mandatory for able-bodied folk of fighting age. But athletes at the top of their game are sometimes able to forego military drafting if they represent their country at the highest sporting level; now a debate is emerging over whether K-pop stars ought to receive the same treatment. “The idea has been spurred on from the success of Korean athletes at the Asian Games,” says Bernie Cho, founder of K-pop artist-management agency DFSB Kollective. “What wasn’t known is that there are many instances of Korean musicians getting military exemptions – but they are pianists, violinists and classical musicians who have won international competitions.” With K-pop becoming a key soft-power export, perhaps Seoul should give more performers a chance to dodge the draft.

Cinema

Mature themes

A new film focusing on conversion therapy is a prime example of how teen movies have grown up.

The teen-movie genre has had a revamp in recent years: storylines are supplementing adolescent themes of sex and teen angst with more gripping and complicated issues. The Miseducation of Cameron Post is one such coming-of-age film. Set in 1990s Montana, it centres on a teenage girl – compellingly portrayed by Chloë Grace Moretz – who, on being caught in an amorous embrace with a prom queen in the back seat of a car, is sent off for conversion therapy. American-Iranian director Desiree Akhavan sought to give her lead character depth. “I felt that teen movies were talking down to the experience of coming of age and really neutered their characters,” she told Monocle 24. For more, listen to the full interview on The Monocle Weekly, premiering tomorrow at 12.00 London time.

Society

Something to celebrate

From brass instruments and beer to battles aboard boats, festivals in the former Yugoslavia are well worth a visit.

Age-old festivals in the former Yugoslavia have weathered centuries of turbulence – and post-independence, they’re a handy form of cultural calling card. Serbia plays up the bacchanalian Guca Trumpet Festival: four days of strident brass justifying the massive overconsumption of grilled meat and Jelen beer. Bosnians have been jumping off Mostar’s old bridge every July for more than 400 years. And, this weekend, Slovenia gets silly at the Boatmen’s Fights. As part of a tradition dating back to the 11th century, rival boats take to the capital’s Ljubljanica River and use long sticks to try to poke opposing crews into the drink. Come to the River Captain’s Club tomorrow – poles are provided.

From Monocle 24

El Internacional

The Menu

How the legendary New York tapas bar and restaurant has found a new life as an international pop-up.

From Monocle Films

The secret to designing outdoor space

Monocle Films sits down to talk to architect Iliana Kerestetzi and see how she goes about designing courtyards in rural Greece.

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