How Do You Figure Out The Future Of Theatre If You’re Stuck In The Past?

Eddie Eyre as Yakov and Jenny Rainsford as Masha in Headlong's version of The Seagull in 2013

“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.”

Stepping Out – Retirement Is Tough For Dancers


“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.”

Study: Big Gender Gap In Pay For Museum Directors


“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.”

The Densest Music Ever?

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“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.

“Inherent Dullness”: A Young Man Goes To An Orchestra Concert

Photo courtesy of The Cleveland Orchestra

“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.”

Why Ravel Was An (Almost) Great Composer


“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.”

The New World Trade Center – A Panoramic View From The Top Of The World

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“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.”

Japan’s “Beethoven” Apologizes


“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.”

Why Do We Find Some Languages More Beautiful Than Others?


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.'”

When James Met Jean-Jacques: How Rousseau Cured Boswell of Calvinism


“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.”

A Century of Dance in America, On Walls in Washington


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.