“Being forced to step off stage gave me time to learn more about the profession. I watched so many performances, rehearsals, classes as well as taught a number of classes myself. This gave me a moment to genuinely slow down and take everything back to basics.”
Gramilano (Milan) Published:02.06.16
“Before Pilobolus, before Momix, before Mummenschantz, there was Alwin Nikolais, … [who] created shape-shifting, otherworldly visual wonders through original experiments with bodies, space, light and sound, and his work was hugely popular and influential from the 1950s until the 1990s. Today, however, it’s not well known to general audiences.”
New York Times Published:02.09.16
The choreographer explains his inspiration for his new ballet Strapless, about a young New Orleans woman who became a sort of Belle Epoque Paris supermodel – until she was ruined by a scandalous portrait painted by John Singer Sargent.
The Guardian Published:02.08.16
Sarah Kaufman: “It’s difficult to imagine a new director matching Webre’s magnetism, room-brightening cheer and go-go output. But a new hire doesn’t need to. … With a strong financial position, the Washington Ballet has an opportunity to shoot for the top. It should focus on the very highest quality, not just the short-term buzz of exhilaration. Why shouldn’t it be the nation’s premier chamber-size ballet company?”
Washington Post Published:02.07.16
“We have an opportunity right now, to really change how our culture values art, creativity and artists themselves. I believe we can do it by being an integral part of building new, more equitable and sustainable structures and systems that work for not only artists, but for lots of other people as well. To capture this opportunity, we need to look beyond small artist-specific solutions to systems level problems, and instead engage in the bigger, most urgent questions of our time.”
In an essay that makes actual sense of phrases like “the ethics of awesomeness” and “[the] existential disposition to suck,” philosopher Nick Riggle explains why being awesome doesn’t simply mean excellence and someone or something isn’t merely bad when it sucks.
“Pretentiousness is always someone else’s crime. It’s never a felony in the first person. … The pretentious flaws of others affirm your own intellectual or aesthetic expertise. Simultaneously, their fakery highlights the contours of your down-to-earth character and virtuous ordinariness. … It is axiomatic that pretentiousness makes no one look good. But pretension is measured using prejudiced metrics.”
The Guardian Published:02.09.16
“We have different conceptions of the self the world over not because selves differ, but because at different times and places people have more or less concern with different aspects of selfhood. They provide different answers to the question ‘What is the self?’ because that apparently singular question in fact contains any number of different ones.”
New York Times Published:02.08.16
When well-meaning white people say, “Help me define cultural appropriation so I know what to do and not to do,” what they are actually saying, even if they aren’t aware, is, “Help me understand how to continue in this system of privilege and oppression without feeling bad.”
The Establishment Published:02.09.16
“Websites like Sci-Hub and Library Genesis have a lot of support from the academic community, including from the authors whose work is being traded for free in shadowy corners of the Internet.”
The Atlantic Published:02.09.16
Legislation to make the artist visa process more reliable and affordable was introduced in the U.S. Senate today by Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-UT) and Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-VT). The Arts Require Timely Service (ARTS) Act, S. 2510, would improve opportunities for international cultural activity by ensuring that U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) processes artist visas on time.
League of American Orchestras Published:02.09.16
“[That’s] despite accounting for just a third of the country’s cultural offering. … The report also reveals that the average funding per London organisation is £2.1 million, compared with £495,000 for organisations outside the city.”
The Stage (UK) Published:02.05.16
“From an upstart ingenue like Alicia Vikander, tapped for Best Supporting Actress for The Danish Girl, to a veteran producer like Steve Golin, who has two films (Spotlight and The Revenant) competing for Best Picture; from a writer like Andrea Berloff, who co-scripted the unexpected blockbuster Straight Outta Compton, to documentary director Liz Garbus, nominated for her defiant and heartbreaking What Happened, Miss Simone?, all the assembled were equally eager to share their insights about the craziness (and necessity) of Oscar campaigning.”
New York Magazine Published:02.09.16
“Consciously or unconsciously, contemporary filmmakers not only tap into increased knowledge about the brain offered by neuroscientific experiments, but their films also stimulate the neural senses of emotions without the detour of narrative.”
“So how did the company that seismically shook the music industry, rethought the smartphone, and pioneered the tablet blow it with the television set? The reasons are complex but essentially involve a combination of hubris, impenetrable legal agreements, bad timing, and a television industry that identified Apple as public enemy No. 1.”
When silent movies came to India, there were almost no experienced actresses there: respectable Indian women did not appear on the public stage. So most of the stars – some of whom also produced and wrote – came from the Baghdadi Jewish community in Bombay and the Bene Israel in Maharashtra. (One of them was the first Miss India.)
Scroll (India) Published:02.02.16
“Oscar nominees in the acting and directing categories at this month’s Academy Awards will be given a 10-day, first-class trip to Israel valued at $55,000, included among other goodies in their $200,000 gift bag.”
Jerusalem Post Published:01.07.16
Opera House That’s Been Shot Up, Burned Down (Twice), Gone Broke, And Used As Political Tool Gets Restored And Reopened
The Georgian National Opera House in Tbilisi has survived tsars, commissars, civil war and economic shock over its 165 years. Now, after a six-year, $40.5 million renovation paid for by the country’s richest man (a former prime minister), it’s open again.
The Guardian Published:01.27.16
“By mathematically analyzing scans of the auditory cortex and grouping clusters of brain cells with similar activation patterns, the scientists have identified neural pathways that react almost exclusively to the sound of music — any music.”
The New York Times Published:02.08.16
“The Island’s longest continuously operated performing arts institution … suspended its subscription concert season more than five years ago due to financial shortfalls. It shut down after a failure to reach an agreement to renegotiate terms of a loan that would allow the Philharmonic to continue paying its freelance musicians and skeleton staff.”
Newsday (Long Island) Published:02.08.16
Gregory Weber was first hired as the company’s general manager in the fall of 2014; he left the following June for an executive job at Michigan State University’s arts center. Now Oklahoma has lured him back with a newly created position, general director and CEO.
Tulsa World Published:02.10.16
“Tours … are morale-boosters for an orchestra, building a sense of solidarity … and bringing the group in front of new audiences – something more important than ever, since there are fewer opportunities for an orchestra to be heard in today’s uneven recording landscape. … They’re also hugely expensive – and more popular than ever.”
Washington Post Published:02.10.16
Onward And Upward In The Arts: Ted Cruz’s Choice As His National Security Advisor? An Art Historian, Of Course
“Who is behind this rise from art historian at the Cleveland Museum of Art to being the National Security Advisor to one of the presidential front-runners for the Republican Party? It appears to have begun with Donald Rumsfeld.”
“The prolific author was known for his novels, short stories, columns and poetry and belatedly saw worldwide recognition when he was shortlisted for the Man Booker International Prize in 2013 and was awarded France’s Ordre des Arts et des Lettres a year later.”
The Telegraph (UK) Published:02.02.16
Lucas, 36, was previously the publisher of Guernica, an arts magazine with an international and often political focus. Before that, she had worked at other nonprofit cultural institutions, including the Tribeca Film Festival and the Steppenwolf Theater in Chicago.
The New York Times Published:02.10.16
“Prized for her vivacious charm, instinctive musicality and sparkling, light-footed technique, Miss Verdy danced in the works of more than 50 choreographers. But she is most closely linked with George Balanchine, with whom she worked from 1958 to 1976, in the heyday of his New York City Ballet.”
Washington Post Published:02.09.16
Lynn Nottage, Pulitzer-Winning Playwright, Talks Research, Collaboration, And The Fracturing Of America
“One of my frustrations with what happens on the stage a lot of the time when working class people are put up there, it’s like poverty porn. They’re laughed at, or they’re the villains, or they’re ridiculous. I think the struggles folks are going through are really real. It affects you physically and emotionally.”
Yes, it takes creative liberties—the Founding Fathers didn’t really spit rhymes or use phrases like “John Adams shat the bed”—but the story is historically sound.
“The role will be the first time in decades that Mr. Whitaker, an in-demand film and television actor who won an Oscar for his work in The Last King of Scotland, has acted in a play. It will also be the first time that a black actor has played Erie Smith on Broadway.”
New York Times Published:02.07.16
The show went on – with some ingenious last-minute adjustments by the show’s creator/performer, Erin Pike. For instance, the performance started with the voicemail message a Samuel French executive left Pike saying that the performance was “illegal” and the agency would “go after [their] presenter.” (includes audio of voicemail message)
The Stranger (Seattle) Published:02.08.16
“Visitors will experience an immersive journey back to Van Gogh’s Yellow House, which is located outside of the museum’s campus in Chicago’s neighborhood of River North. The bedroom runs for just $10 a night and is part of a larger apartment. Dates will be released through the posting monthly and fill up quickly.”
“Starbucks has started selling art from a new coffee bar in Chelsea, amid some of the biggest galleries in New York. The Fortune 500 company opened a branch in the neighbourhood in late November with an exhibition of paintings and drawings by the young US artist Robert Otto Epstein, each of which was on sale for between $1,000 and $3,000.”
The Art Newspaper Published:02.01.16
“The rock-carved underground church is located within a castle in the center of Nevşehir … It is reported that some of the frescoes here are unique. There are exciting depictions like fish falling from the hand of Jesus Christ, him rising up into the sky, and the bad souls being killed.”
Hürriyet Daily News (Turkey) Published:01.26.16
“As alleged, Eric Spoutz created an entire world of fiction to make a profit—from the fraudulent paintings he was selling, to the phony letters and receipts for provenance,” said FBI Assistant Director-in-Charge Diego Rodriguez.
The Daily Beast Published:02.07.16
“Al-Jazari … worked as the chief engineer at Artuklu Palace, headquarters of the Artuqid dynasty that ruled over parts of Turkey, Syria and Iraq in the 11th and 12th centuries. During his time there, he invented a large number of devices that revolutionized mechanical engineering … Perhaps Al-Jazari’s most wondrous inventions were his clocks, because they were about so much more than just telling the time.”
Atlas Obscura Published:02.04.16
A Definition Of Modernism Not By Artists But The Bureaucrats Who Used It As A Weapon In The Cold War
“Cold War modernism,” then, doesn’t refer to experimental artwork produced between the end of World War II and the Reagan administration, but to “the deployment of modernist art as a weapon of Cold War propaganda by both governmental and unofficial actors as well as to the implicit and explicit understanding of modernism underpinning that deployment.
Los Angeles Review of Books Published:02.02.16
Before September 2011, there was no way for people to freely access paywalled research en masse; researchers like Elbakyan were out in the cold. Sci-Hub is the first website to offer this service and now makes the process as simple as the click of a single button.
“Don’t get me wrong, we’re doing pretty great on our own, better than ever really. We’ve gotten a bit more independent, not putting all of our eggs into any one basket, gotten better at establishing boundaries. Still not sure, after all that, how we got this all so wrong. Didn’t we both want the same thing? Maybe it really wasn’t us, it was them. Most days it’s hard to remember what we saw in Google. Why did we think we’d make good partners?”
“Those students most in need of great books are by and large too strafed by their environments to invest the necessary force of mind.”
The New Republic Published:02.08.16
“It is a place of learning and ideas, with books salvaged from the wreckage outside … A photocopy of an old history book, a shelf full of children’s stories, and self-help books by Tony Robbins, sit alongside a J.M. Coetzee novel, a volume of Islamic scholarship, and slim editions of Arabic poetry by Mahmoud Darweesh or Nizar Qabbani. They are read by candlelight during lengthy power outages or at the war front by rebel fighters.”