Carol Ann Duffy: My First Five Years As Poet Laureate

Carol Ann Duffy

“When Carol Ann Duffy was appointed poet laureate in 2009, the first woman to hold the post in its nearly 350-year history, she set herself several goals that included setting up new prizes, giving support to new festivals and helping to generate commissions for poets.”

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Tech Companies Begin To Understand That Changing The World Isn’t Just About Tech, It’s Politics Too

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“A new generation of tech companies, however, have made Silicon Valley’s political needs less theoretical, and more immediate. They are taking on pre-existing, real-world industries. (The purely virtual ideas — search, portals, email — have been taken.) It’s harder to ignore politics when you’re changing the world, not just the web. And so these companies — Uber and Airbnb are the most obvious — have found a sweet spot where founders’ disdain for politics and regulators meets the smartest political strategy money can buy.”

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A Remarkable Career: Soprano Magda Olivero Dies At 104

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The spell she cast could win over even skeptics like Schonberg, who began his review of her now-legendary Met debut by inexplicably claiming, “It wasn’t Magda Olivero’s evening, as it turned out.” But he then went on to aver, “It was history come to life last night, as the soprano, despite her age, gave us a feminine, fiery, utterly convincing Tosca.”

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How Do We Build Sustainable Arts Audiences?

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Join the conversation: Building Arts Audiences – live panel discussion with Kurt Andersen, NEA chairman and national arts leaders. Oct. 1 at 3pm est. #buildingartsaudiences

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Atlanta Symphony CEO Resigns As Lockout Continues

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“I believe that my continued leadership of the ASO would be an impediment to our reaching a new labor agreement with the ASO’s musicians,” said Stanley Romanstein in a press release.

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Julio Bocca Injured In Auto Accident

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The former ballet superstar, now director of the National Ballet of Uruguay, suffered “minor traumas” when his car ran off the road and flipped over about 30 miles north of Montevideo.

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Can Ballet Depict The Abuse Of Native Children In Residential Schools?

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“In one scene, a young residential school student receives crippling blows from a clergyman. In another, he is brutally strapped. His classmate later has her long hair sheared off. This is part of what viewers will see when Going Home Star – Truth and Reconciliation debuts at the Royal Winnipeg Ballet on Wednesday.”

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The New Yorker Discovers Barroom Shakespeare

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Rebecca Mead visits the Three Day Hangover theatre company, founded last year, which performs “textually divergent interpretations” of Hamlet and Romeo and Juliet” in crowded New York bars.

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Les Arts Florissants Loses State Funding (But They’ll Adapt)

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The celebrated Baroque specialist ensemble “is losing the support it has received for 25 years for performing and teaching in Caen, where the city and regional French governments are cutting back.” But, says founder/director William Christie, the group is better situated to absorb the shock than many other French arts organizations.

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Giving Voice To Syria’s Hidden Dead In New Theatre Piece

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Tania El Khoury’s interactive sound installation/performance piece Gardens Speak reconstructs “oral histories of the men and women who are buried not in public cemeteries, but in the back gardens of ordinary Syrian homes” because public burials were too dangerous.

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“The Airbnb Of Classical Music”

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“Groupmuse – started in 2012 and run by [Sam] Bodkin, Ezra Weller and Kyle Nichols-Schmolze – matches Groupmuse users looking to host a concert with willing musicians needing a venue to perform. Once a match is set up, other ‘Groupmusers’ are invited to attend, creating an event that’s part house concert, part party, part social platform.” (includes video)

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Could We Reconstruct The Music Of Ancient Mesopotamia?

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Composer and musicologist Stef Conner means to try. “The reason I think we can do this is that the language of the poems – their stresses, intonation, and rhythm – provides clues about musical style.”

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“Children Of A Lesser God” Returning To Broadway After 35 Years

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Children of a Lesser God, a groundbreaking play about the relationship between a deaf woman and a hearing man, who clash over ideas about speech even as they fall in love, will be revived on Broadway during the 2015-16 theater season … The director will be Kenny Leon, who won a Tony Award in June for staging the Broadway revival of A Raisin in the Sun last spring.”

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Leonardo’s “Lady With An Ermine” – Turns Out There Were Three Of Them

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“Engineer Pascal Cotte has spent three years using reflective light technology to analyse The Lady with an Ermine … [and] has shown the artist painted one portrait without the ermine and two with different versions of the fur.” (includes video)

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Now The Big Guns Are Joining Writers’ Fight Against Amazon

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“Andrew Wylie, whose client roster of heavyweights in literature is probably longer than that of any other literary agent, said he was asking all his writers whether they wanted to join the group, Authors United. Among those who have said yes … are Philip Roth, Orhan Pamuk, Salman Rushdie, V. S. Naipaul and Milan Kundera.”

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The Philly Fringe Festival Isn’t Really A “Fringe”, Says Its Founder

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Nick Stuccio: “[It] is really not a fringe . … I don’t know what it is. It’s an arts festival, picked by me and Sarah [Bishop-Stone, programming manager], that worked. We call it ‘fringe’ because 18 years ago we really didn’t know what we were doing and we called the whole thing the ‘Fringe’.”

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Social Trust And Personal Trust: What Policymakers Can Learn From The Self-Help Gurus

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“Even some of the most seemingly unemotional forms of trust can be deeply emotional. In other words, policymakers who want to improve our faith in others should take a page from the self-help crowd and do more to build a sense of social intimacy and promote what neuroeconomist Paul Zak once called the ‘empathic human connection’.”

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UK Copyright Law Finally Allows Exception For Parody

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“Under current rules, there has been a risk of being sued for breach of copyright if clips of films, TV shows or songs were used without consent. But the new European Copyright Directive will allow the use of the material so long as it is fair and does not compete with the original version.”

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Two Lancaster, Pa. Museums Merge (No Hostile Takeovers Involved)

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“The Demuth Museum and the Lancaster Museum of Art will merge into one museum at two locations. … The museums will not change their names, nor will they unite under an umbrella title, Lampe said, because the community has strong ties to both museums. … [but] they will be a single 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization with one staff and one board of trustees.”

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Can L’Exception Culturelle Save Paris’s Oldest Bookstore?

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“This month, the Librairie Delamain’s lease is up for renewal by the Qatari company Constellation Hotel Holdings, which … plans to double the bookstore’s rent to 100,000 euros per year – nearly a tenth of their annual revenue.” But now the Académie Française and the nation’s minister of culture have gotten involved.

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Philadelphia Doesn’t Have To Say Goodbye To Those Thousands Of Sendak Items Forever

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“Practically speaking, it doesn’t matter where the Sendak materials live or who owns them. Any exhibition uses only a few dozen items at a time, and loans are common in the world of arts and literature. In theory, if the Rosenbach and the Sendak trustees agreed, a steady stream of Sendak shows could continue to flow through the Rosenbach, and as far as the backstage legal status and residency of the collection goes, the public would be none the wiser.”

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Legal Battle Over Astérix Ends As Co-Creator And Daughter Kiss And Make Up

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“It was a dispute as bitter and drawn-out as Astérix the Gaul’s campaign against the Romans. On Friday, however, the illustrator Albert Uderzo … and his daughter … buried the hatchet after a court threw out a case brought by Sylvie Uderzo claiming her father had been tricked into selling off part of the family heritage.”

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Longwood Gardens, Near Philadelphia, To Give Its Fountains $90M Upgrade

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“With more than one million visitors a year, Longwood – the former estate of the industrialist Pierre S. du Pont, who designed and built the Fountain Garden in 1931 for his own entertainment – is the most popular public garden in the country.” Currently, the fountains’ original plumbing – described as “a network of Band-Aids” – is still in use.

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The British Museum Is Becoming Part Of “Minecraft”

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“The British Museum in London – complete with all of its exhibits – is to be recreated in the video game Minecraft. The project is part of the Museum of the Future scheme, which aims to expand the institution’s appeal.” And they’re crowdsourcing the (virtual) construction.

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Sustainable Audiences? Growing Audiences?

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Join the conversation: Building Arts Audiences – live panel discussion with Kurt Andersen, NEA chairman and national arts leaders. Oct. 1 at 3pm est. #buildingartsaudiences

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We’ve Known The Internet Was Broken For Decades. Now What Do We Do?

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“Because the net is built on software that gets endlessly used and reused, it’s littered with code that dates back decades, and some of it never gets audited for security bugs.”

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Afraid To Fly? Aside From The Terrifying Crash Shows, Hollywood Can Help You

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“Air Hollywood has become a go-to destination for filming aviation scenes in Hollywood. Its aircraft sets and props have been featured in countless TV shows, commercials and movies and not just for moments of terror.”

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You’ll Finally Be Able To See All Of Michelangelo’s Work At The Sistine Chapel

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“Michelangelo was said to have mixed the pigments for his work and painted the frescos using natural light, and for centuries, the only illumination came through the few windows in the chapel or from candlelight. In modern times, Vatican officials blocked off the windows for fear the sunlight would damage the frescos. In the 1980s, the museum installed a halogen system that emitted low-level lighting to protect the artworks.” Now, things are changing.

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This Woman Worked As A Teamster To Support Her Daughter And Her Writing – And Won The American Book Award

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“J. California Cooper, an award-winning writer whose black female characters confront a world of indifference and betrayal, but find kinship there in unexpected places, died on Saturday in Seattle. She was 82.”

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