Janet Jackson has announced Metamorphosis, her Las Vegas residency that will kick off this spring and runs through the summer at Park Theater at Park MGM resort. Tickets for the 15-date run go on sale Saturday via Ticketmaster, with a presale for members of the artist’s fan club and Citi cardmembers beginning on Wednesday.
In addition to Wednesday’s presale, MGM resorts’ M life Rewards loyalty members, Live Nation and Ticketmaster customers will also have access to a presale, which begins on Friday.
The shows will trace Jackson’s “path to self-love, empowerment, motherhood and activism, amidst the challenges she faced along her personal journey. She encourages her audiences to find their own light within themselves through her Metamorphosis,” according to a statement. As the singer wrote on Instagram, it also marks the 30th anniversary of Rhythm Nation.
“Tonight I feel moved to speak for women whose voices have been stifled,” she said. “I am one of those women. Women who have been gagged, both literally and emotionally. Women who have been abused. Women who have been intimidated. Women who have lived in fear. I stand with you. You are my sisters.” The singer continued, “Tonight, I carry the hope that a new world is emerging. A world in which caring people, male as well as female, will no longer tolerate gender inequality. Women, our voices will be heard.”
Jackson released her first new music in three years, “Made For Now” with Daddy Yankee, last summer.
Janet Jackson Metamorphosis Las Vegas Residency
May 2019: 17, 18, 21, 22, 25, 26
July 2019: 24, 26, 27, 31
August 2019: 2, 3, 7, 9, 10
Jerome Powell’s Congressional Testimony: Live Analysis
Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell is on Capitol Hill for two days of hearings facing a political and economic backdrop greatly changed from when he gave his congressional testimony in July. We'll have live video and all the details.
Jerome Powell’s Congressional Testimony: Live Analysis
Jerome Powell Affirms Fed’s ‘Patient Approach’ to Future Interest-Rate Changes
Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell affirmed the Fed’s decision last month to stop raising interest rates while officials assess the impact of slower global growth and financial-market turbulence.
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Warren: Fed Merger-Approval Process Is 'Rubber Stamp'
Sen. Elizabeth Warren on Tuesday said the Federal Reserve's process for approving bank mergers "appears to be a rubber stamp," as the Fed is set to review a deal to merge BB&T Corp. and SunTrust Banks Inc.
Since 2006, the Fed has not said no to any merger application, Ms. Warren told Fed Chairman Jerome Powell as he testified before the Senate Banking Committee.
A BB&T-SunTrust merger could create the sixth-largest U.S. retail bank.
"This time, you’re going to be listening to comments from the public?" Ms. Warren asked.
Mr. Powell said the Fed would "conduct a very fair and open, transparent process."
Powell Sees Good Domestic Outlook, Risks Overseas
Where do risks to the U.S. economy stem from right now? Overseas, according to Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell.
Slowing global growth, particularly in Europe and China, could create headwinds for the domestic economy. Brexit is an "event risk which could have implications for us," he added.
Meantime, the outlook for the U.S. economy is a positive one.
Powell Says Policies Should 'Reward and Support' Labor-Force Participation
Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell said the strong economy is pulling people back into the labor force or encouraging them to not leave, a welcome development he hopes will be sustained.
Several members of the Senate Banking Committee raised questions about educational and urban-rural divides.
"We ought to have policies that reward and support labor-force participation," the Fed chairman told lawmakers.
In Powell's Hill Testimony, No One's 'Fed Up'
Fed Chairman Jerome Powell's testimony so far has been a low-drama affair compared with past hearings. Mr. Powell has received hardly any questions about the stance of monetary policy and only the most gentle sense of pushback from Republicans over the Fed's plans to retire its balance sheet runoff earlier than had been expected when the process began in 2017.
Absent are the critics of interest-rate increases from the group "Fed Up" who used to line the back of the hearing room.
Powell: Look to Health Care to Stabilize Federal Debt
Although it's grown trendy to argue the U.S. faces no meaningful constraints on government debt—at least not any time soon—Mr. Powell seems to not buy into this view.
"The U.S. federal government is on an unsustainable path," Mr. Powell said. "We need to stabilize debt-to-GDP."
He didn't endorse a specific strategy, saying: "The timing of doing that, the ways of doing that, through spending, through revenue, all of those things are not for the Fed to decide."
Pressed on what Congress should do, however, Mr. Powell highlighted one specific area of focus: health-care delivery. He noted the U.S. appears to waste money, spending far more on health care than other advanced economies while not successfully improving health outcomes.
"It's not that the benefits themselves are too generous, it's that we deliver them in highly inefficient ways," he said. "If I were in your seats—and I'm not—I would think that's a good place to look."
Powell: Defaulting on U.S. Debt Would Be 'A Very Big Deal'
Fed Chairman Jerome Powell said Tuesday "it would be a very big deal" if the U.S. failed to pay all of its bills in full and on time in the event Congress fails to raise the federal borrowing limit.
The limit is set to be reinstated Saturday at $22 trillion, but the Treasury Department will use extraordinary measures to conserve enough cash to keep making payments. Those measures are expected to last at least through the summer, the Bipartisan Policy Center has estimated.
Mr. Powell told lawmakers a default on U.S. debt is "beyond even considering," and said the government should always pay its bills on time.
When Skydance Media Chief Executive David Ellison announced this year that he was hiring John Lasseter to head Skydance Animation, many in and outside the company were shocked and deeply unhappy. Only months earlier, Lasseter had ended his relationship with Pixar — where he had worked since the early ’80s — and parent company Disney after multiple allegations of inappropriate behavior and the creation of a frat house-like work environment. Lasseter had admitted to inappropriate hugging and “other missteps.”
After announcing the hire, Ellison sent a long email to staff, noting that Lasseter was contractually obligated to behave professionally, and convened a series of town halls in which Lasseter apologized for past behavior and asked to be given the chance to prove himself to his new staff. Meanwhile, Mireille Soria, president of Paramount Pictures Animation, with which Skydance has a distribution deal, took the highly unusual step of meeting with female employees to tell them that they could decline to work with Lasseter.
But it was Emma Thompson, the politically outspoken newly anointed dame commander of the British Empire who made the first real definitive statement on Lasseter, and one of the most significant decisions in post-#MeToo Hollywood.
In mid-February, it was reported that the two-time Oscar winner had pulled out of Skydance’s highly touted animation feature “Luck,” citing her concerns about Lasseter’s hiring. According to her representatives, from the moment the hire was announced, Thompson began conversations about extricating herself from the project; she officially withdrew Jan. 20.
In a letter she sent to Skydance management three days letter, she acknowledged the complications caused by a star withdrawing from a project, including the effect her decision would have on the director, the rest of the cast and the crew. But in the end, she wrote, the questions raised by the Lasseter hire made it impossible for her to remain in the film.
Thompson declined to comment on her decision, but she made the letter available to The Times. (When contacted, Skydance representatives had no comment.) Here it is, in full:
As you know, I have pulled out of the production of “Luck” — to be directed by the very wonderful Alessandro Carloni. It feels very odd to me that you and your company would consider hiring someone with Mr. Lasseter’s pattern of misconduct given the present climate in which people with the kind of power that you have can reasonably be expected to step up to the plate.
I realise that the situation — involving as it does many human beings — is complicated. However these are the questions I would like to ask:
- If a man has been touching women inappropriately for decades, why would a woman want to work for him if the only reason he’s not touching them inappropriately now is that it says in his contract that he must behave “professionally”?
- If a man has made women at his companies feel undervalued and disrespected for decades, why should the women at his new company think that any respect he shows them is anything other than an act that he’s required to perform by his coach, his therapist and his employment agreement? The message seems to be, “I am learning to feel respect for women so please be patient while I work on it. It’s not easy.”
- Much has been said about giving John Lasseter a “second chance.” But he is presumably being paid millions of dollars to receive that second chance. How much money are the employees at Skydance being paid to GIVE him that second chance?
- If John Lasseter started his own company, then every employee would have been given the opportunity to choose whether or not to give him a second chance. But any Skydance employees who don't want to give him a second chance have to stay and be uncomfortable or lose their jobs. Shouldn’t it be John Lasseter who has to lose HIS job if the employees don’t want to give him a second chance?
- Skydance has revealed that no women received settlements from Pixar or Disney as a result of being harassed by John Lasseter. But given all the abuse that’s been heaped on women who have come forward to make accusations against powerful men, do we really think that no settlements means that there was no harassment or no hostile work environment? Are we supposed to feel comforted that women who feel that their careers were derailed by working for Lasseter DIDN’T receive money?
I hope these queries make the level of my discomfort understandable. I regret having to step away because I love Alessandro so much and think he is an incredibly creative director. But I can only do what feels right during these difficult times of transition and collective consciousness raising.
I am well aware that centuries of entitlement to women’s bodies whether they like it or not is not going to change overnight. Or in a year. But I am also aware that if people who have spoken out — like me — do not take this sort of a stand then things are very unlikely to change at anything like the pace required to protect my daughter’s generation.
Yours most sincerely,
These are issues raised by many after news of Lasseter’s hiring broke, and as other men who stepped down or were fired from high profile jobs after being accused of inappropriate behavior have attempted to return to their industries. They are, perhaps, described more succinctly by Thompson — she did win one of those Oscars for screenwriting — but far more important is that they are literally parting words.
Kim Jong-un has had 421 officials 'purged' and executed - with victims fed naked to animals, blown up with anti-aircraft guns or burned alive with flamethrowers, says South Korean report
- Collection of accounts from high-ranking defectors reveals Kim's cruel methods
- One said he'd witnessed 12-man execution by soldiers using anti-aircraft guns
- One-by-one, they 'blew victims up, crushed their bodies using armored vehicles'
Kim Jong-un is using barbaric methods to 'purge' his officials and cling onto power, according to a damning South Korean investigation.
The dictator has had 421 officials executed and exiled since seizing power in 2011, with victims being fed naked to hunting dogs, blown up with anti-aircraft guns, burned alive with flamethrowers and hanged, the report claims.
In some cases, entire families of officials have been executed while others were imprisoned in concentration camps and 'erased from society'.
Kim Jong-un (pictured in Vietnam ahead of his summit with Donald Trump) has purged 421 officials since seizing power in 2011, including his own family members, according to a damning South Korean report
The dictator (waving on arrival at Dong Dang Station, flanked by his security) has had victims fed naked to animals, blown up with anti-aircraft guns, hanged and burned alive with flamethrowers, the report claims
When the North Korean leader had his uncle Jang killed, 'more than 15 people were killed and 400 others were purged,' according to the collection of accounts from high-ranking defectors.
Titled 'Executions and Purges of North Korean Elites: An Investigation into Genocide Based on High-Ranking Officials' Testimonies', the report was researched by the Seoul-based North Korean Strategy Centre (NKSC).
It combined the accounts of 14 North Korean elite group defectors, six North Korean officials in China and five other defectors who witnessed executions.
The investigation found that Kim ordered the execution of his uncle because Jang 'sold the country's resources to foreign countries at a low price.'
It also claims officials faced death or imprisonment for minor infractions such as slouching at an event attended by the supreme leader.
The report lists the full names of more than 50 purged victims, while confirming that hundreds more were executed but never named.
Moon, a former student at Pyongyang Commercial College, said in the report he'd witnessed a 12-man public execution by soldiers using four anti-aircraft guns.
He said that, one-by-one, four guns were aimed blew up the victims, according to Radio Free Asia (RFA), before armored vehicles were used to crush their remains.
Moon said he suffered from PTSD following the killings.
The report was analysed at a Human Rights panel discussion in Washington last Friday.
Jared Genser, a member of Human Rights in North Korea's (HRNK) International Advisory Council, explained that these methods were to strike fear into the hearts of the entire population, from the average citizen to high ranking officials.
The report claims Kim had his uncle Jang Song Thaek - the vice chairman of the National Defense Commission - in 2013 because he 'sold the country's resources to foreign countries at a low price'
He issued a plea to US President Donald Trump to raise human rights with Kim as they discuss nuclear disarmament at their summit in Hanoi today.
'Read this report that has hard evidence of the facts, and they're corroborated. Know your counterpart, who he is. The single most important issue when dealing with him is not denuclearization. It is the human rights issue,' said Kang.
Kim crossed into Vietnam with fanfare and a red carpet on Tuesday – as an attendant scurried looking like his life depended on it to catch up to be by the absolute leader’s side.
Kim's half-brother Jong-nam, who was assassinated in 2017 by two women who attacked him with a nerve agent at Kuala Lumpur International Airport in Malaysia
Included in his lengthy motorcade that snaked its way through the Vietnamese capital was an armored vehicle complete with a mounted gun turret on top.
It later parked itself around the corner from Kim's hotel, while locals on scooters made their way through the city's packed streets.
As he reached his final destination, Kim's team of protective agents jumped out of a line of black SUVs to enter Kim’s hotel. They could be seen riding with vehicle doors open, then rushing to the heavily-guarded leader.
Jenna Bush Hager joins Hoda Kotb as Kathie Lee Gifford's replacement on 'Today' show
Lee Gifford says she will stay on NBC's "Today" show until April. USA TODAY
Hoda Kotb has a new wine-drinking partner! Jenna Bush Hager will join Kotb as the permanent co-host of the "Today" show’s fourth hour later this year, NBC announced Tuesday.
The move comes after Kathie Lee Gifford revealed in December that she would be leaving the show in April. Gifford had served as co-host for 11 years before announcing her departure.
“You have been such a role model and so generous with your time," Hager said Tuesday to Gifford. "You are beloved here in so many ways and if I can use some of your grace and have a half of what you’ve done, my life will be a very happy one.”
Hager has been a correspondent on the show since 2009, and has regularly filled in for Kotb and Gifford during the 10 a.m. EST/PST hour.
“It feels humbling and I can’t believe it,” Hager said on the show Tuesday.
The daughter of former president George W. Bush shared what her father said to her about her new gig, getting emotional as she told Kotb and Gifford.
“My dad just wrote me three words, which made me weep. He said, ‘Very proud dad,’ ” Hager said. “Which I’m like, what is there to be proud about? I’m just drinking wine in the morning!”
NBC News president Noah Oppenheim sent out an email to staffers about Hager's move.
"Jenna joined TODAY nearly ten years ago and she quickly became a fixture in our family," he wrote in the email obtained by USA TODAY. "Her compassion and curiosity come through in all of her stories, along with her Texas-sized sense of humor. Jenna instantly connects with everyone she meets, whether they are guests on our show or fans on the Plaza."
Oppenheim noted that this would be "the first of many" changes happening at "Today."
"While it’s bittersweet to say goodbye to Kathie Lee, we are thrilled to have the opportunity to make some changes at 10 a.m. This is just the first of many! The show is evolving, and we will have additional announcements to share with you in the coming months," he wrote. "In the meantime, please join me in wishing Jenna a big congratulations!"
LA Lakers: Luke Walton gives update on Lonzo Ball injury
Ball has been out for 11 games after suffering an injury against the Houston Rockets.
The point guard went down with a grade three left ankle sprain and was originally set to miss four to six weeks.
However, word spread over the weekend that the youngster’s injury was worse than originally feared.
It was reported that Ball had a bone bruise in the ankle, and he is now further away from a return.
However, he admitted that he had no idea when the star will be back.
Ball has been sorely missed, and the Lakers have won just four times since he was injured, losing nine games.
Lonzo Ball suffered injury against the Houston Rockets
Lonzo Ball might not return this season
“Nope, they haven’t given me a date,” Walton said.
“They just said they are working with him and they’ll let me know.
“I like staying in communication with the guys, so I check in with him just make sure to see how he’s doing.
“I ask about whatever, where his mind is at and those type of things.
Lonzo Ball has been out for more than a month now
“But we don’t speak daily, no.”
The Lakers currently have a roster spot open, and have been linked with moves for free agent Carmelo Anthony and DeAndre Jordan from the New York Knicks, if the latter can organise a buyout with the organisation.
And Walton hinted that there has been no major update on either move, and suggested that he is leaving it up to president of basketball operations Magic Johnson and general manager Rob Pelinka.
“I’ve had conversations with them about a lot of things, but they’re looking to see how they can help improve the team with that last spot,” Walton continued.
“But no decision from what I’ve been told so far on what that’ll be.”
Karl-Anthony Towns’ NBA-record streak of 303 starts ended Friday, but the All-Star forward made it clear to reporters that he was just “happy to be alive,” given that he emerged relatively unscathed from a scary crash.
The car in which Towns, 23, was traveling Thursday was stopped on a stretch of highway in Minneapolis because of a wreck in front of it. He said his car, a compact SUV, was then struck from behind by a semitruck he estimated to be traveling at 35 to 45 mph.
"I would say I had a 5 percent chance of making it out alive," Towns declared, before returning to action Monday in a home game against the Kings. "I hit the 5 percent mark. And then, I'd say 4 percent was to be seriously injured, and 1 percent was to be minorly injured. And I came out in the 1 percent, so it's not bad."
"It's been a blessed three days," he added, "just to be here talking to you all, to be able to do what I'm doing, is a blessing."
Towns missed road games against the Knicks and Bucks while in the NBA's concussion protocol. He said Timberwolves assistant strength and conditioning coach Kurt Joseph was driving during the crash, which "happened too quick" for Towns to worry about his safety.
A car had stopped in front of theirs, reacting to the crash ahead, causing the driver of Towns' car to do the same.
The crash remains under investigation, according to the Twin Cities Pioneer Press, but a report by authorities stated that alcohol was not suspected to be a factor.
The Timberwolves’ interim head coach, Ryan Saunders, noted that he has made a point to “talk a little bit more” than usual with Towns since the crash, saying, “You obviously want to make sure KAT the person is taken care of. That’s definitely put ahead of KAT the basketball player.”
It’s usually tough to pinpoint when sparks start flying between celebrity couples... except for Gwen Stefani and Blake Shelton. Thanks to their televised partnership as judges on The Voice, they couldn’t keep fans guessing about their relationship status for long. The chemistry was super obvious.
After divorcing their respective spouses in 2015, the duo made it official a few months later. "It’s kind of crazy—we both went through the same thing at the same time," Gwen told Ryan Seacrest on his radio show that year.
And now, they're still going strong with romantic vacations, Christmas duets, and mentions of "forever" in interviews. Wedding bells must be around the corner, right?! Well, before the No Doubt frontwoman and 2017’s Sexiest Man Alive walk down the aisle, Terri Orbuch, PhD, relationship expert and author of 5 Simple Steps to Take Your Marriage From Good to Great, analyzed their body language to find out if they're the real deal.
Making their first red carpet appearance as an official couple at the Vanity Fair Oscars afterparty in 2016, Gwen and Blake did not hold back with their genuine smiles, locked hands, and bodies leaning toward each other. "This illustrates a close connection and bond, showing everyone 'I’m 100 percent into this person, and I want you all to know that,'" says Orbuch. (Plus, they had a lot of missed PDA to catch up on.)
The lack of space between the couple is especially telling. "Their bodies form and fit each other," says Orbuch.
Blake showed Gwen all the love with a big ol’ smooch at the 2018 People’s Choice Awards and even brought her on stage during his acceptance speech. But he didn’t stop there (because making viewers swoon in front of their TVs isn’t enough): Blake took to Twitter later that night to continue gushing, calling the award show "a hell of a date night!!"
Even in a quick snap at the 53rd Academy of Country Music Awards, the duo's body language is all about showing the world that they are each other’s—and only each other’s. "He has his hand on her leg," which Orbuch says is a signal to everyone that "this woman is mine."
Meanwhile, Gwen’s body—nestled up to Blake’s with her hand on his thigh—shows how proud she is to be with him and how much she wants everyone to know it.