Aspen Ideas Festival Announces an “Afternoon of Conversation” Starring Common and Pop-Up Magazine

June 7, 2019

The signature half-way event will feature the award-winning musician in conversation and the Spring’19 Issue of an acclaimed “live magazine”

Contact: Jon Purves
Senior Media Relations Manager
The Aspen Institute
202.736.2111 |

Aspen, CO and Washington, DC, June 7, 2019 –– The Aspen Ideas Festival, which is presented by the Aspen Institute and co-hosted by The Atlantic, will welcome a cultural icon and activist, Common, and the internationally acclaimed “live magazine,” Pop-Up Magazine, to the Afternoon of Conversation on Wednesday, June 26 at 3:00pm MT. The afternoon is the Festival’s signature half-way event, gathering all attendees at the Benedict Music Tent. Nothing will be streamed or recorded; the audience must be there to experience it.

Common, an Oscar, Golden Globe, Emmy, and Grammy award-winner, will open the afternoon in conversation with Arthur Brooks, the President and Beth and Ravenel Curry Scholar in Free Enterprise at the American Enterprise Institute. They will discuss Common’s recent book, Let Love Have the Last Word, which explores love as an action and a tool for self-betterment, and healing humanity.  

Pop-Up Magazine (“a sensation”—New York Times) will appear for the first time at the Festival with their Spring 2019 Issue show. The touring “live magazine” is created for a stage, a screen, and a live audience. Contributors will tell vivid, multimedia, nonfiction stories, accompanied by illustration, animation, photography, and an original score performed onstage by their musical collaborators, Magik*Magik Orchestra.

The Spring 2019 Issue at the Aspen Ideas Festival will feature performances from writers Vann R. Newkirk II (The Atlantic), Francesca Mari (The California Sunday Magazine, Texas Monthly), and Rowan Jacobsen (A Geography of Oysters); filmmakers Veena Rao (The New York Times Op-Docs) and Sophia Nahli Allison (Sundance Institute New Frontier Lab); photographer Xyza Bacani; comedian Mohanad Elshieky; and audio producer Robin Amer (USA Today’s The City) and opera singer Emily Birsan. This show will conclude Pop-Up Magazine’s national Spring ’19 Issue tour, which included stops in the Bay Area, Portland, Seattle, LA, NYC, and D.C.

The Pop-Up Magazine team say that “the Spring 2019 Issue will change the way we think about memory; bring you along on the world’s craziest car ride; tell a story of life away from home for domestic workers; attempt to bring a flower back from extinction; and much, much more.”

As part of the Festival, Common will also perform an intimate concert in Aspen on the evening of the 26th at 7:00pm with “Common Presents: Let Love… An expression of Art, Words, & Song.”

Common and Pop-Up Magazine join more than 300 thinkers and leaders who will participate in the 15th annual Aspen Ideas Festival this June in Colorado, where speakers and attendees will engage with many of the most pressing challenges facing our world today. The Festival is an experience for the curious: bringing together the people leading their industries for in-depth and often intimate conversations about today’s most critical issues.

This year’s Festival will run from June 23-29, 2019, preceded by Aspen Ideas: Health from June 20-23, 2019. The Festival is presented by the Aspen Institute and co-hosted by The Atlantic.

Editor’s Note: All pass holders for the Aspen Ideas Festival are invited to the Afternoon of Conversation, and a limited quantity of individual event tickets will go on sale to the public on June Press interested in covering the Festival should contact


The Aspen Institute is an educational and policy studies organization based in Washington, DC. Its mission is to foster leadership based on enduring values and to provide a nonpartisan venue for dealing with critical issues. The Institute is based in Washington, DC; Aspen, Colorado; and on the Wye River on Maryland’s Eastern Shore. It also has offices in New York City and an international network of partners. For more information, visit

Founded in 1857 and today one of the fastest growing media platforms in the industry, The Atlantic has throughout its history championed the power of big ideas and continues to shape global debate across print, digital, events, and video platforms. With its award-winning digital presence and on cities around the world, The Atlantic is a multimedia forum on the most critical issues of our times—from politics, business, urban affairs, and the economy, to technology, arts, and culture. Bob Cohn is President of The Atlantic and Jeffrey Goldberg is Editor in Chief. Emerson Collective is majority owner; Atlantic Media is the minority operating owner of The Atlantic.


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