“I’m not suggesting for a moment that we should cease to celebrate, cherish and, indeed, support our rich theatre culture – and that includes what has gone before. But by playing it too safe, hunkering down and not shifting investment into grassroots, new forms and genuine risk-taking productions, there is a real possibility that you will destroy theatre’s many possible and as yet undreamed of futures.”
Archives for March 7, 2014
“The great majority of current dancers claim to be aware of the challenges that transition will pose (98 percent, 86 percent and 93 percent in the U.S., Switzerland and Australia, respectively), but many former dancers concede that they were in fact ill-prepared for this process.”
“The change has been greeted like some kind of major capitulation. But that’s actually not quite true: This is merely the latest move in a slow shift toward a new and more realist take on digital monetization — a shift that’s been going on for years.”
Luca Belgiorno-Nettis “left as more artists said they would pull out of the event in protest over its main sponsor, his family’s construction company Transfield Holdings. The firm provides services for the Australian government’s controversial immigration detention centres.”
“It found that female directors at museums with budgets of more than $15 million earn 71 cents for every $1 male directors earn. At the same time, women who run art museums with smaller budgets do earn more than their male counterparts – annually, they earn 2 cents more.”
“Black MIDI,” a subculture of electronic music remixing that mutated into existence in Japan five years ago, is an aesthetic snapshot of the early 21st century if there ever was one. It’s digital, viral, and truly “multimedia”–because it’s music, data visualization, and software demonstration at once.
“I got into trouble in the past for my nonfiction, and I swore, ‘I’m never going to write anything with a footnote again.’ “
Being studioless, some have put their art careers aside. Others have begun to ask: If they can’t afford gritty, unglamorous Industry City, then where?
“I had trouble enjoying myself. My brother did too. This by no means is to suggest that the orchestra itself was poor. Perhaps me and my bro are just uncultured, southern swine. More likely it was just not for us (and by extension a lot of people in my age range). I enjoy symphony music. I have a playlist of classical music on my Spotify. But I thought sitting and watching the orchestra play has an inherent dullness.”
“Everything in Ravel’s music is held at a distance, as it was in his life. Just think what iron discipline and self-denial it must have taken, to keep the messy intimacies of life at bay. There’s a similar denial in the music. You always know where the music’s heading; there’s no sense of discovery or risk.”
“A survey has found that half of an average home’s 138 books go unread. I’m surprised it is as low as a half. Books aren’t meant to be read.”
If you think of your self as an essence—something you’d describe with adjectives like “unified,” “continuous,” and “unchanging”—well, science has some bad news for you.
“No doubt the new building’s official dedication will open the way to a necessary debate over its merits as architecture and urbanism, its turbulent design history and the compromises made over the long years it took to get the thing built. But in one important respect, One World Trade Center has already succeeded. It has reclaimed the sky. And this is the view from there.”
“The Biennial is the most purely narcissistic of all New York art world events, an orgy of navel-gazing that can leave a bad feeling—a sense of unease, if not disgust.”
“Ditching his trademark long hair and sunglasses, a clean-cut Mamoru Samuragochi repeatedly bowed in shame before a packed press conference in a Tokyo hotel, where some dubious reporters dragged along hearing-impairment experts to assess the mock maestro.”
“If this much loss comes with the translation of a single word, it’s hard to imagine the worlds that are lost with the rendering of an entire novel. But the crucial thing to remember – I often tell myself – is that it doesn’t matter. Loss is invisible; it is what makes it through the net that matters.”
Bernd Brunner (aggrieved): “People often describe German, my native language, as hard and aggressive. They relish criticizing its guttural sounds, long compound words, and the sentence structure … According to popular accounts, it was five hundred years ago when the apparently polyglot Charles V, Holy Roman Emperor, declared ‘I speak Spanish to God, Italian to women, French to men, and German to my horse.'”
“Boswell had been raised in the dour Church of Scotland, where the worst of Scottish weather and Scottish Calvinism met to form a perfect storm of fear and trembling.” And so, while on the Grand Tour, the young man turned to the author of Emile and The Social Contract, who had “succeeded in the redoubtable task of uniting, if only on the subject of Jean-Jacques Rousseau, Catholics and Protestants, monarchic France and republican Geneva.”
For a start, it’s because his approach to writing opera was, as he wrote, “Put aside intelligibility, put aside urgency of plot. Put in embellishment. Put in Maria Callas and Patsy Cline and Billie Holiday.” Mark Swed explains.
While she did just make her last opera appearance, she says, “One door closes and another door opens but as to retiring, I’ve never ever had that word in my vocabulary. Only thing is that other people have got it in their vocabulary because they can’t think of anything else to say.”
“In Doha, there was once a buzzing festival and schemes to nurture local talent, but now much of the the money in the Qatari film business goes to projects elsewhere.”
Bartlett Sher will direct the musical’s latest incarnation in the fall of 2015. No casting has been announced, though the director has reportedly talked informally with Broadway stalwart Danny Burstein about playing Tevye.
“Stephen Jay Carlton, the former executive director of the Los Altos-based Peninsula Symphony, is facing felony charges for embezzling hundreds of thousands of dollars from the nonprofit organization, prosecutors said Wednesday.”
“Thanks to a collaboration between Gaumont Pathé archives, La Cinémathèque Française, and sound-recording expert Henri Chamoux, 34 of the original films [shown at the Exposition’s newfangled Phono-Cinéma] have been beautifully restored.” (includes clips)
Alastair Macaulay visits the “exuberantly diverse” exhibition at the National Portrait Gallery, “Dancing the Dream”, which features everyone from Vernon and Irene Castle to Rudolf Nureyev to Shirley Maclaine to Isadora Duncan to Mark Morris to Twyla Tharp to John Travolta to Gypsy Rose Lee.
“Opera Wilmington is now formally incorporated and is applying for federal non-profit status … Plans now call for the company to mount a production of Franz Lehar’s The Merry Widow, in English, July 25-27 … with a cast of student and local singers.”
Columbia Pictures is producing the remake for release this coming holiday season, with stars Quvenzhané Wallis (Beasts of the Southern Wild) and Jamie Foxx. (includes trailer)