“Digital broadcasts of dance generally fall into two categories: behind-the-scenes glimpses into rehearsals, like those offered by ballet companies around the globe on World Ballet Day, and live streams of in-demand theatrical performances, like those presented by the Guggenheim for its Works & Process performance series. In these latter cases, the broadcast usually supplements the live event; even without people tuning in remotely, the show would go on. “Marfa Dance Episodes,” directed by Benjamin Millepied, with choreography by him as well as several company members, differ in that the broadcast itself was the event; the series was created exclusively for an online audience, and the episodes, ranging from about seven to twenty minutes, were choreographed for—and with—the camera.”
Art In America Published:06.21.17
When Dance Magazine published its list last week, the editors asked readers to tell them whom they unjustly left out. And readers definitely did.
Dance Magazine Published:06.21.17
“‘It’s easy to talk about the issues facing the dance sector, but I thought we had to do something,’ McGregor says, citing the cost (“around £2,000 per week,” or over $2,500) of renting a studio in London. As part of [his] FreeSpace [program], 5,000 hours of studio time will be gifted to 25 artists over one year. In exchange, for each week spent in the Studio they are asked to devote one day to outreach projects.
Dance Magazine Published:06.20.17
She’s opening a studio in St. Petersburg that will teach yoga and gymnastics as well as ballet; she’s running a dance festival that covers both that city and Moscow; she loves being a guest with other companies and wants to do more of it. In a Q&A with Gia Kourlas, she talks about her plans, ballet training today, and what she loves about American audiences.
New York Times Published:06.20.17
A longread report on “Calling Bullshit in the Age of Big Data,” a full course taught by two data scientists at the University of Washington who believe that teaching bullshit detection is one of the main purposes of education – and crucial for a healthy democracy. (Be sure to look out for Brandolini’s Bullshit Asymmetry Principle.)
Australian scientists have recreated a famous experiment and confirmed quantum physics’s bizarre predictions about the nature of reality, by proving that reality doesn’t actually exist until we measure it – at least, not on the very small scale.
Science Alert Published:06.01.17
“People who enjoy a lot of respect — like Stephen Hawking and Elon Musk — warn of a coming artificial intelligence apocalypse. Others say the conversation has become alarmist — either that general AI is unlikely, or that even if it arrives, it will be here to help, not harm us.”
“Maybe the abolition of privacy will kill the novel. But more likely, as with the invention of trains or rockets or sex, it will make it new. One of a writer’s rewards is to find himself alive in the detail of his stories, and the age of the internet provides a whole new funfair of existential provocations. In my childhood, the visiting funfair was called “The Shows”, and that is what I found when I went looking for heroes in the fiction machine, carnivalesque people who are bent of shape – by their pasts, by their ambitions or by their illusions – under the internet’s big tent. In a world where everybody can be anybody, where being real is no big deal, some of us wish to work back to the human problems, driven by a certainty that our computers are not yet ourselves. In a hall of mirrors we only seem like someone else.”
The Guardian Published:06.17.17
More than 18,000 people voted at 60 polling booths set up by activists and 17,874 chose to eject the ships, which are accused of shaking the delicate foundations of Venice’s venerable palazzi.
The Times (UK) Published:06.20.17
“We recognize that art is an industry with a structural reality that must be acknowledged in order for artists to challenge their complicity in the displacement of long term residents in low-income and working class neighborhoods and fight against this. It’s important that people see the devastating impacts of securing housing in working class and poor neighborhoods, and setting up investment properties posing as art spaces.”
“The takes are scorchingly hot, the opinions often on point. And yet the pronounced progressiveness of opinionated pop culture writing stands in direct contrast to the increasingly regressive nature of America’s actual politics. What accounts for the discrepancy?” Shaun Scott explains what.
“The average culture vulture in the US spends an additional $31.47 whenever she attends an arts event: almost $17 on food, about $4.50 on souvenirs and gifts, over $3 on local transportation – it all adds up. This is the micro level of the $166.3 billion in economic activity that the nonprofit arts sector contributed to the US economy in 2015, according to a study released on Saturday by Americans for the Arts.”
“Thomas Edison might be best known for the electric lightbulb, but he was also a connoisseur of strange short films.” And one of those odd little movies was Boxing Cats. (includes video)
Atlas Obscura Published:06.19.17
“While women, people of color, LGBTQ folk and other historically marginalized communities in Hollywood continue to insist ‘diversity pays,’ the box office success of films with diverse casts such as Hidden Figures ($230.1 million worldwide) and Get Out ($251.2 million worldwide) is inevitably deemed a ‘surprise.’ A new study and database crafted by Creative Artists Agency, however, is aiming to take some of the surprise out of box office performance, noting that across every budget level a film with a diverse cast outperforms a release not so diversified.”
Los Angeles Times Published:06.21.17
“What makes that era seem if not golden then at least more sophisticated is that by comparison, local television today, Boston included, is in the doldrums. For the declining influence of local television, and for the withering influence upon younger viewers, executives blame the internet and the profusion of cable options. A reason they do not acknowledge is that it was made easier by the decline in quality since the era.”
“Under the two-year deal with Snap Inc., Time Warner – which owns Warner Bros. as well as cable networks CNN, HBO, TBS and TNT – will develop and produce up to 10 made-for-Snapchat shows per year. The projects will span genres, including scripted dramas and comedies, and will reach across Time Warner’s networks and entertainment properties, meaning that Wonder Woman or Batman could one day end up on Snapchat.”
Hollywood Reporter Published:06.20.17
“Kristin Scott Thomas, Penelope Wilton, Joanna Scanlan and Steffan Rhodri are among the stars performing the monologues” – a series of nine online videos collectively titled Brexit Shorts: Dramas from a Divided Nation – “by writers including Abi Morgan, Meera Syal, Maxine Peake and David Hare.”
The Guardian Published:06.19.17
“Finland has one of the best education systems in the world, where teaching music and learning to play an instrument are the foundation of children’s schooling; it should be the model for us to follow. The principle is that a child is never too young to start a relationship with music; creative play is the key and it should never be a chore; musical exploration will feed into other disciplines; children should be allowed to develop at their own pace and go into music as deeply as they wish. It is fantastically successful, and Finland has produced a stream of extraordinary musicians over the past 30 years – making it surely per capita the most productive country for churning out great classical conductors and soloists.”
The Guardian Published:06.19.17
Philippe Auguin, 56, will have completed eight seasons with WNO by the time he steps down from his post. Having made his company debut in 2009 as an 11th-hour replacement for his ailing predecessor, Heinz Fricke, in a concert version of Wagner’s “Twilight of the Gods,” he has particularly excelled in Wagner, leading “Tristan and Isolde” in 2013 and Francesca Zambello’s “Ring” cycle in 2016, which counts as one of the company’s great triumphs.
Washington Post Published:06.21.17
“It was after seeing the sharp distinction in approach, methodology and effect between Rancid and the concert’s headliners, Green Day, that a theoretical superstructure for punk rock struck me – one which can be linked to the history of art.” Noah Charney – who grants that “normally you don’t find ‘punk rock,’ ‘theoretical superstructure’ and ‘history of art’ occupying the same sentence” – makes the case.
Vireo is the first opera designed for episodic release, both on television and online, and the culmination of an artist residency project at the Grand Central Arts Center at California State University, Fullerton. “My hopes for Vireo,” says center director John Spiak in a promotional film about Vireo’s making “is that 30 or 40 years down the line it will be seen as one of those groundbreaking things that made a difference in the artistic world. We’ve taken a live entertainment, opera,” adds the director, Charles Otte “and shot it as a piece of film, as opposed to finding an opera, staging it on a stage, and shooting it with three or four cameras.
San Francisco Classical Voice Published:06.20.17
The ornate Belle Epoque theatre had lost its luster, visually and artistically, by the end of the last century. But the house’s director, Olivier Mantei, is determined to bring excitement and audiences back. So he’s overseen a meticulous restoration of the building to its original splendor, reopened it with a spectacular revival of a grand opera not seen in Paris for 246 years, and even commissioned a patisserie to create a new cake for the occasion.
New York Times Published:06.20.17
Morton’s terminology is “slowly infecting all the humanities”, says his friend and fellow thinker Graham Harman. Though many academics have a reputation for writing exclusively for their colleagues down the hall, Morton’s peculiar conceptual vocabulary – “dark ecology”, “the strange stranger”, “the mesh” – has been picked up by writers in a cornucopia of fields, from literature and epistemology to legal theory and religion. Last year, he was included in a much-discussed list of the 50 most influential living philosophers. His ideas have also percolated into traditional media outlets such as Newsweek, the New Yorker and the New York Times.
The Guardian Published:06.15.17
To be Sofia Coppola is to have grown up with certain advantages. The Coppola family tree is a verdant one: Sofia’s grandfather was composer Carmine Coppola; actors Jason Schwartzman and Nicolas Cage are her cousins; and her brother Roman produces her films through the family-run production company American Zoetrope. But lineage alone doesn’t determine who we grow up to become. At 46, Coppola, who has made six delicately distinctive feature films over the past 18 years, has built something of a stealth career.
“A museum on the site of the boyhood home of the [Nobel-winning] poet and playwright Derek Walcott has closed amid a funding shortfall that has been linked to disputes over controversial tourist developments on St Lucia.”
The Guardian Published:06.21.17
The disgraced theatre mogul had run the hugely successful Livent company. “At its height, Livent produced shows including The Phantom of the Opera and Ragtime across North America, the United Kingdom and Australia. The company sought bankruptcy protection in 1998 and was sold off three years later.”
“Jerry Springer — The Opera was supposed to come to Broadway more than 10 years ago after its [Olivier] award-winning premiere in London. That didn’t happen for a variety of reasons, but that brazen musical will finally have a proper run in New York as part of the Off Broadway troupe New Group’s 2017-18 season, the company announced on Wednesday.”
New York Times Published:06.21.17
It is a well-established, incontestable fact that playwrights may exert veto power over both casting and creative teams, too, for unlike film and TV, playwrights hold all the cards in the theater. I use the word “incontestable” very much on purpose, for the playwright, indeed, has a legal basis for that level of control, even if — as with those now accusing the estate of Edward Albee of being raging racists — we dislike the result. The question is to what degree the “scope” of a dramatic work legally extends beyond the experience and performance of the play.
Clyde Fitch Report Published:06.16.17
“The storytelling one encounters in the theater is found nowhere else in life. … These stories are how we come to an agreement about just what is this world is. To experience them together is to renew our shared understanding, and to give ourselves a common point around which to debate life’s big questions.”
Literary Hub Published:06.20.17
“As far as I know, Weiss has never bothered with political correctness. If a chorus line breaks with tradition by incorporating a variety of body types, she notices—as does everyone in the audience. If a play for young audiences glorifies vandalism in the form of graffiti, she objects. I’d argue that’s her greatest strength as a critic: she’s taking on the subject matter of the work, as any critic worth his or her salt should, and she’s not afraid to go out on a limb. You might not share her perspective, and that can make her a lightning rod, but it doesn’t automatically make her a bigot.”
Chicago Reader Published:06.21.17
“The museum, which opened on June 3, displays a bit of amnesia about the formative experiences that led to Mr. Geisel’s best-known body of work. It completely overlooks Mr. Geisel’s anti-Japanese cartoons from World War II, which he later regretted.”
The New York Times Published:06.21.17
Says Francis Kéré, the first African architect to design the annually built structure, “I was inspired by the big tree in my native village of Gando [in Burkina Faso]. The community always gathers in its shade. I wanted to create a place that would encourage people to come together, with spaces where you feel enclosed and protected, or choose to look out to the park.”
The Guardian Published:06.20.17
‘We Are Not Going For The Bilbao Effect!” Insists New Spanish Museum (Even Though They Hired A Starchitect)
“The idea was not to create an icon,” avers the director of the Centro Botín in Santander. “The building is not trying to show off or give the impression that Santander is more than it is.” “I suppose our strategy was the opposite of the Guggenheim,” says architect Renzo Piano, who designed the building not to be visible from the city center. “How many Bilbao effects can you have after all?”
The Art Newspaper Published:06.21.17
“The World Monuments Fund is launching a £500,000 scheme to train Syrian refugees living in and around the Zaatari camp on the Jordanian border in traditional stone masonry. The aim is to develop skills so that cultural heritage sites that have been caught in crossfire or destroyed by [ISIS] can be rebuilt once peace is restored to Syria.”
The Art Newspaper Published:06.21.17
“In a small-scale study, a research team led by Francesco Walker of Vrije University presents evidence that children and adults look at works of art quite differently, with kids focusing first on visually stimulating elements. Adults, in contrast, try to make sense of the thing from the get-go.”
Pacific Standard Published:06.21.17
“[There’s] a national movement to turn K-12 librarians into indispensable digital mavens who can help classroom teachers craft tech-savvy lesson plans, teach kids to think critically about online research, and remake libraries into lively, high-tech hubs of collaborative learning – while still helping kids get books.”
Eliza McGraw tells the story of the Pack Horse Library, a WPA program that served the isolated, book-starved towns of the eastern Kentucky mountains.
Smithsonian Magazine Published:06.21.17
José Eduardo Agualusa and translator Daniel Hahn share the International Dublin Literary Award 2017 for A General Theory of Oblivion, which was a finalist for this year’s Man Booker International Prize. Candidates for the IDLA are nominated by librarians and library readers all over the world.
Irish Independent Published:06.21.17
“Reading historical fiction not only puts our current events into a historical context, but also helps us understand and imagine and empathize with what people lived through in other times and places. It reminds us that other people, ordinary people, real people, have lived and survived and fallen in love, but also, died in these times of political turmoil before us.”
Anjum Hasan looks at the phenomenon of “minor-character elaboration” – from Jean Rhys’s The Wide Sargasso Sea (the story of Jane Eyre‘s madwoman in the attic) to Margaret Atwood’s The Penelopiad (how Ulysses’s wife and queen passed the twenty years waiting for his return) and onward. (Hasan also includes Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, though we think that wasn’t the same thing.)
The Baffler Published:06.15.17