Presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton was in Springfield, Ill., Wednesday where she sought to use the symbolism of a historic landmark to draw parallels to a present-day America that is in need of repairing deepening racial and cultural divides.

The Old State Capitol — where Abraham Lincoln delivered his famous "A house divided" speech in 1858 warning against the ills of slavery and where Barack Obama launched his presidential bid in 2007 — served as the backdrop for Clinton as she spoke of how "America's long struggle with race is far from finished."

Episode 711: Hooked on Heroin

1 hour ago

When we meet the heroin dealer called Bone, he has just shot up. He has a lot to say anyway. He tells us about his career--it pretty much tracks the evolution of drug use in America these past ten years or so. He tells us about his rough past. And he tells us about how he died a week ago. He overdosed on his own supply and his friend took his body to the emergency room, then left.

New British Prime Minister Theresa May announced six members of her Cabinet Wednesday.

Amid a sweeping crackdown on dissent in Egypt, security forces have forcibly disappeared hundreds of people since the beginning of 2015, according to a new report from Amnesty International.

It's an "unprecedented spike," the group says, with an average of three or four people disappeared every day.

The Republican Party, as it prepares for its convention next week has checked off item No. 1 on its housekeeping list — drafting a party platform. The document reflects the conservative views of its authors, many of whom are party activists. So don't look for any concessions to changing views among the broader public on key social issues.

Many public figures who took to Twitter and Facebook following the murder of five police officers in Dallas have faced public blowback and, in some cases, found their employers less than forgiving about inflammatory and sometimes hateful online comments.

As Venezuela unravels — with shortages of food and medicine, as well as runaway inflation — President Nicolas Maduro is increasingly unpopular. But he's still holding onto power.

"The truth in Venezuela is there is real hunger. We are hungry," says a man who has invited me into his house in the northwestern city of Maracaibo, but doesn't want his name used for fear of reprisals by the government.

The wiry man paces angrily as he speaks. It wasn't always this way, he says, showing how loose his pants are now.

Ask a typical teenage girl about the latest slang and girl crushes and you might get answers like "spilling the tea" and Taylor Swift. But at the Girl Up Leadership Summit in Washington, D.C., the answers were "intersectional feminism" — the idea that there's no one-size-fits-all definition of feminism — and U.N. climate chief Christiana Figueres.

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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Melissa Aldana Wins Thelonious Monk Competition For Saxophonists

Sep 17, 2013

At a ceremony and concert last night in Washington, D.C., the Thelonious Monk Institute of Jazz named Melissa Aldana, 24, the winner of its annual competition for young musicians. The highest-profile event of its kind, this year's competition was open to saxophonists.

Aldana, who plays tenor sax, is the first female instrumentalist to take first prize in the event's history, held every year since 1987. She wins $25,000 in scholarship money and a recording contract with Concord Music Group. Fellow tenor player Tivon Pennicott, 27, won second prize and a $15,000 scholarship; alto saxophonist Godwin Louis, 28, finished third and took home $10,000 in scholarship funds. All three finalists are currently based in New York City.

"I'm really good friends with Godwin and Tivon," Aldana said following the competition. "They are like my brothers, so I was really honored to be next to them."

In the final round, she performed a medium-slow take on the standard "I Thought About You," showcasing her dark tone, motivic development and creative ornamentation; she also called an original composition in the uptempo, angular "Free Fall." Like all the contestants, she was accompanied by the trio of Reggie Thomas (piano), Rodney Whitaker (bass) and Carl Allen (drums). Judging was handled by a panel of saxophonists: Wayne Shorter, Jimmy Heath, Bobby Watson, Branford Marsalis and Jane Ira Bloom. Before announcing the winners, the Monk Institute also presented a series of tribute performances to Shorter, who turned 80 this year, and the late keyboardist George Duke, the previous musical director for the ceremonial concert associated with the Monk Competition.

Raised in Chile, Aldana came to the U.S. in 2006 to study at Berklee College of Music. Her father and grandfather were also saxophonists; in fact, her father Marcos Aldana competed in the 1991 Thelonious Monk International Jazz Saxophone Competition.

"He said it was really terrible, actually," Aldana said. "He said it was, like, 23 people. He was really scared. It was the year Chris Potter and Joshua Redman were here. But he was like, 'Just be yourself and play, and you'll be fine.'"

Aldana has at least one "shovel-ready" recording project prepared: She is planning to document her Crash Trio with drummer Francisco Mela and bassist Pablo Menares. Previously, Aldana released two albums on the Inner Circle label — founded by saxophonist Greg Osby, who has also employed her with his own band.

She's also looking forward to using the scholarship funds: "I'm going to take a lot of great lessons with people," she said.

Copyright 2013 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.