August 2010 Archives


This week's video: Gary Burton and Larry Coryell, performing live in 1967 with the Burton Quartet:


Today's entry: William Haggard on other people's opinions.

Baby you can drive my bus

Is it financially beneficial to provide transportation to your venue?

Thank Goodness I Live In New York

Regional Funding Differences Perpetuate The Unequal Distribution Of The Arts

Sony snap up the Vienna Philharmonic

And is that such a good deal?

Confessions of a Twitter-Phobe

Help. I got the social media blues

Chet Baker: Words And Music

As far as I know, this is the first time I've been quoted in Magyar


Today's entry: William Haggard on logic and the intellectual.

A Nationwide Education First

The deCordova Museum Hosts A Pre-School In What May Be An Arts Breakthrough
Angels in America

Two Contrasting London Shows

Tears at The New London Theatre and Laughter at The Globe.
Perhaps those engaged in arts ed lobbying believe that class- and race-based melodramas best sway elected officials and philanthropic organizations. Or perhaps they genuinely find the social and personal benefits of arts instruction more compelling than the arts themselves.
It's August. It's Monday. Delay it for 6:20.
and some very good news for the Met

How did he get to Carnegie Hall?

The boss reveals all in The Lebrecht Interview

Take to the highway

Eight days on the road.


Today's entry: Sun Tzu on escape.
A Critic Asks If Advocates Are Making The Strongest Argument -- And Answers No

The Johnny Coles Discography

Trumpeter Johnny Coles (1926-1997) was an insiders' favorite barely known to the general public.
Son of glass artist Paul Marioni, Dante grew up with glass, taking his first rod out of the furnace at age 10 and saturating himself in his teens in the practice, history and aesthetic possibilities of the medium
August dances and reviews

Kurt Cobain - last days

Final review for a terrific show that will not travel and does not have a catalog
Today's WSJ Posits An Answer
In everything she does, there is always the wound and the struggle to survive it
Beyond the Swing Era's Savory Collection, thrilling new archival discoveries

The Opera Event of the Season!

...and no, it's not The Met's new Ring.
In 1997, Jacob Lawrence called him the young artist he would most like to see achieve wider recognition

Sursum corda

Buddy Rich plays "Love for Sale" in 1970.

An "Awesome" Roster

Are These The Best Art Museum Blogs? "Recommended Reading" About The Future

Regina the First

American Players Theatre's "Another Part of the Forest" and "Major Barbara" reviewed.


Today's entry: Glen David Gold on parents and aging.
In images

Bits From The Savory Collection

Further evidence has come in verifying the value of that cache of previously unheard recordings in the Savory Collection at the National Jazz Museum in Harlem.

Chasing the Biggest Racers of the Year

We're rallying arts supporters so Meg and Jerry know we're serious
Have we got a new measurement of the jazz audience? Yes, no and yes

The Best Thing You'll Read This Week

Vice Magazine reviews recently released classical discs. ("Harp! F-ing Mozart. Man, I'd love to fight that guy.")

Economies of Life

Bill Sharpe offers a lovely and engaging treatise on art, economies, and the exchange of meaning.

Another Museum In Trouble

The Taubman, Less Than Two Years Old, Has Slashed Staff From 52 To 17, But Still Can't See The Light
What brings the art critic-in-absentia here is not art, but tennis. Will he be tempted to visit museums?


Today's entry: Jonathan Miller on theater and life.
What Do-Ho Suh floats, Yamamoto makes as heavy as a tomb

Calling all PR pros

Some jobs in marketing and PR in New York City.

Which Work Would You Rather View?

Something's Amiss In New Britain, And Maybe At The Walters. Potent Kool-Aid
Aside from the cheap space, cheap shrimp cocktails and free parking, Bavington likes the neon at dusk. Dusk is the magic hour, when the signs are smeared against the sky, fighting the dark
Court has NOT prohibited a $30-million, half-share sale of Stieglitz Collection to Crystal Bridges. It wants details modified.
Notions of "good" teachers vary among parents, other teachers, administrators, policymakers, researchers, and, of course, journalists.

I'm Typing As Fast As I Can

Deadlines are stacking up around here like cordwood or like the piles of CDs I haven't heard.


This week's video: Monty Woolley in "The Man Who Came to Dinner."


Today's entry: Robert Sherwood on the attributes of a playwright.

The Artist As Patron

Botero's Museum In Bogota Says Much About Him. Yet It Could Have Been Much Better If Only..
City can't have too many contemporary museums---especially when major holdings and $200-million endowment are involved. Museum or mausoleum?

I will follow him

Looking at a selection of classical musicians who use Twitter and Facebook and how they use them.


Today's entry: Kingsley Amis on lost causes.
It couldn't happen to better reporter or publication. But allow me to chew my sour grapes. Link to WSJ piece.

What do Children Need the Most?

Love and Respect.
That's The Trend Among New Museum Directors. Is This The Right Track?

Shortcutting Social Media

Are you unable/unwilling to stop and think through what options make the most sense in light of your mission? No problem!

Supervert Gets Into Her Head

Is there a writer alive who wouldn't kill for a review like Jessica Brown's?

Luigi Beethoven -- postmodernist

In a single passage of piano writing, three distinct styles come and go

The Art Of Colombia

What I Learned On My Summer Vacation: Gold And Mummies Star
Like the unnamed narrator of his first novel, Life With A Star, the Jewish writer Jiri Weil had a chance to escape from Prague just before the German invasion in 1939, but he couldn't bear to leave

Entry from an unkept diary

Some thoughts on gratuitous nastiness in public discourse.


Today's entry: Winston Churchill on how history repeats itself.

Congress's UnSavory Copyright Conundrum

If those "new" solos by Lester Young and Coleman Hawkins are as stunning as the few people who have listened to them say they are, let us hear them.

Music, With Occasional Cooking

No matter what genre or artist we are advocating for, do we need to adjust our efforts due to the declining opportunities for chance discovery?

Science Or Connoisseurship?

Attention For "The Mark Of A Masterpiece" Better Late Than Never. Bravo David Grann

Sarkozy, The Roma And Django

...the plight of the Gypsies has generated renewed attention to a Gypsy who has been dead for nearly 60 years.
University demonstrates serious case of delusional wishful thinking in characterizing today's ruling. There's no court mandate for $30-million payout.
AG says: "Join us in seizing this look for constructive and creative alternatives." Frist Center says: "No comment."
Time plucks objects out of its stream and leaves them stranded on the shore. Words too ride a curve around a bend and hurtle forward into a different meaning
AG gets 20 days to devise a plan to keep collection in Nashville. Read entire decision at link on CultureGrrl.

A salsa suite success

Larry Harlow's Latin-jazz extravaganza, 30+ years later at Lincoln Center Out-of-Doors

Advocacy with Libations

You share a glass of wine with friends and discuss art all the share one with candidates and call it advocacy
A must-read for every soloist and singer

Good times, bad times

Westport Country Playhouse's "I Do! I Do!" and Barrington Stage's "Absurd Person Singular" reviewed.


Today's entry: Hans Hofmann on art and optimism.
Curated by the audience


The Onion reports that Chad Ochocinco and Terrell Owens are "writing the libretto and music for, and start preliminary blocking on, a new touchdown-celebration"; the Phillies host social media nights.

Hallelujah: A Smart Retort

Brooklyn Museum's Lehman, And Board, Create More Evening Hours -- Staying Open To 10 PM Two Nights A Week

Are your ready for Facebook Place?

The social media platform now knows where you're standing.

Recessionary Blues

Are The Arts Suffering Bigger Losses In Foundation Giving Than Other Categories? No, They're Gaining Share
Fisk's attorney blasts Stieglitz Collection as "ugly" and "Caucasian." So Walton's crazy to spend $30 milllion? Fisk/Frist discussions described.
"We have a big, difficult challenge before us," said Superintendent Jerry Colonna. And, it's going to take a huge commitment from community partners and individuals to make it happen, he added.

Connecting the dots, again

Fractured Atlas offers another handy toolkit for the independent arts.

I Won't Be Having A Thom Collins

OK, That's Too Harsh, But I Quibble With The New Leadership At Miami Art Museum

The Power of Less

The fragile plastic CD jewel case is once again worthy of shelf space.

So you want to see a show?

Here's my weekly theater guide.


Today's entry: Paul Klee on style.
Christopher Knight's disdain for Jerry Saltz has a religious quality

Analyze this

Some museums spend 10% of their operating budgets on evaluation. Are visitor and audience consultants worth the money?

Teaching Arts on The Cheap

Nearly 20 percent of the city's public schools still lack a certified teacher in even one of the arts disciplines.
Pollock's "Mural" is in good hands. New museum facility is first priority. Converting the 2008 flood calamity into an opportunity.


This week's video: Jack Larson talks about his Frank Lloyd Wright-designed home.


Today's entry: Paul Klee on abstraction and escapism.
To Make A Point, Women Take Over 85% Of Museum: A Strawberry For Director
An operagoer all my life, I'm starting to hit Great Wall of Price Resistance: 12% price increase, $60 service charge.

Rolando offers a refund

and what time's the next cancellation?

Can this record save lives?

with a cover that is harmful to our health
Wednesday ends public display in New York of this Nazi-loot trophy. Museum of Jewish Heritage marks occasion with panel.


"Pops: A Vida de Louis Armstrong" has just been published in Brazil.


Paul Klee on the beautiful in art.

Correspondence, Illustrated, From Canada

Too many posts lately about the deaths of prominent figures in jazz. It was good to hear from someone who documents the work of young musicians.
"Art just isn't the kind of thing that lends itself to no-budget, laissez-faire populism"
Now, Could Steven Davis Please Talk To Meier, Libeskind, etc.?
I may be on later today, tomorrow, not at all. I'll update with link to audio if/when it's available.
A concert of French Mediaeval chant, DJs, absinthe ephemera and Asian street food downtown, and a macabre magic show

Off the grid

The communicative power of earlier music is damaged by extremely regular beating
"...we have forgotten that the test is a measure of learning and reified the test score to the status of learning itself. The test score has become the coin of the realm and raising scores through any means has become the Holy Grail."
"We do some stuff that's different from what other people do." Gotta problem with that? Plus, Lehman's less known accomplishments.

How to cope with rejection

Advice from a top opera star
Museums need to remember that's it's OK to take the money, but they don't have to kiss the customer on the lips

It's in the book

Mrs. T and I are now a part of art history.


Today's entry: Joan Mitchell on knowing when a painting is finished.

The Real Battle Isn't Over

Death Of Brodsky's Deaccessioning Bill May Simply Mean A Change In Tactics
Show's "broad legibility" requirement thwarted my guest blogger's desire for details that only a mechanical engineer/bike-aholic could love.
Bad choices hindered the former and injuries the latter

Country mouse

Some good marketing from up in the Berkshires.
Take a spin through museum's bicycle show with an avid amateur cyclist (with excellent taste in girlfriends). Any Speedvagen demos?

Can Lyrics Survive Without Music?

Billy Collins says they can't. I say they can.
The most famous spiritual after World War I was infused with Dvorak's Largo.

Dancing Across the Screen

Do the best things happen while you're dancing when you're simultaneously trying to advance a plot?

Eat love die

Shakespeare & Company's "The Taster," "Richard III," and "The Winter's Tale" reviewed.


Today's entry: George Santayana on truth.
Even when playing torch songs on dead batteries

Down With Pre-Performance Monologues

On the joy kill of being told to turn off your cellphone and pay attention to your nearest emergency exit
Manilow not only "writes the songs" but apparently also helps donate the instruments.
Objections from a few museums quashed bill "that would have served NY well." Still, most already comply with chief provisions.

So you want to see a show?

Here's my weekly theater guide.


Today's entry: J.K. Rowling on truth.
More from those who are not afraid to go back in order to go forward

Taking A Stand Through Song

A new choral ensemble in San Francisco rises in protest at Prop L

Gone fishing

Or, rather, going on vacation, so no blog posts till September. But did you know that fishing is endangered in the same way that mainstream classical music is?
Vintage social media ads.
Stieglitz Collection court case resumes. AG reveals Frist Center's offer to house the collection, keeping it in Nashville, not Bentonville.

So where did your summer go?

How musicians are being robbed of their down time

So where did your summer go?

How musicians are being robbed of their down time

Charlie's gift

Brion Gysin: Bigger Than Life

Painter, poet, promoter, Bad Boy Brion, thanks to his retrospective at the New Museum, must now be reckoned with. He invented the cut-up, used by William Burroughs. Also: sound poetry, tape poems, permutation poems, performance poems, and along the way made some beautiful and mysterious paintings.

Recent Listening: Jessica Williams

...a recital glowing with her customary pianistic dazzle and a nearly Brahmsian gravity leavened with wit.
My stealth appearance in piece by reporter whose Brooklyn coverage I criticized. Brodsky needs to become AG to police deaccessions.


This week's video: Erle Stanley Gardner appears as the mystery guest on "What's My Line?" in 1957.


Today's entry: Thomas Paine on truth.
A Northwest Coast tribe uses its sudden fame for its own ends
In ballet, Alastair Macaulay as few peers, but when he ventures into contemporary, the school of out-of-it is in session


Two dance-theatre pieces about femininity take this critic back to The Village c. 1962...but without the helpful drugs
Helping (or insulting) the Brooklyn Museum, NY Times sought advice from 17 "experts." Now let's hear from Brooklyn's own director.

Swapping Horowitz for Arrau

My son Bernie trades in Vladimir Horowitz for an unforgettable Brahms B-flat Concerto, rendered by Claudio Arrau.

Swapping Horowitz for Arrau

My son Bernie trades in Vladimir Horowitz for an unforgettable Brahms B-flat Concerto, rendered by Claudio Arrau.

The return of "Pops"

I'm speaking about "Pops" in New York's Bryant Park on Wednesday at 12:30. Jon-Erik Kellso is my guest soloist.


Today's entry: Neil Gaiman on truth.

An Open and Equal Internet For All

I thought it was a commercial advocating in favor of net neutrality, which is, um, kinda weird, considering.

It's your turn to write!

Dear Reader, it's your turn to write! I'll resume posting on SEEING THINGS after Labor Day.

The Anti-iTunes

Folksinger Marissa Nadler sells a cover album on Etsy.
Kudos to NPR for the Newport fest, and Wynton via UStream for his Marciac concert

Santa Cruz Roundup

24 hours in a small beach town are packed with culture
Here are the three arts-focused i3 applications that made the cut, a big-time congratulations to all

Ticket to New Jersey

The grudge match between Chicago and one of its great writers should have come to an end. It didn't.

'I could have been Philip Langridge'

Recent Listening: Dana Hall

Dana Hall is a busy drummer. In his case, that's a compliment

Entry from an unkept diary

Somerset Maugham and sexual obsession.


Today's entry: Rex Stout on communication between men and women.

Oliver Nelson Revisited

He became wealthy, but was leery of an essentially mercantile pursuit that he feared might sap his creativity.

Pony Up For That Funky Music

The New York Times follows a BMI licensing executive around the American Southwest on bar, club, and coffee house calls. Anecdotes involving strippers and guns ensue.

So You Think You Can Judge

Nigel Lythgoe's breathtaking stupidity

Shame on Elie Wiesel

Do you have a right not to be written about? Elie Wiesel thinks he does.
How many people responsible for the more than 31 million hits in seven weeks to a Katy Perry video realize that its chief asset comes from Will Cotton?

Where Birds Go Off To Die

An eye-catching installation opposite San Francisco's City Hall provokes thoughts about the future of the city

Gergiev's mixed doubles

Overloading on Mahler at the BBC Proms

The hypocrite's new clothes

The Peterborough Players' "Tartuffe" reviewed.


Today's entry: Brooke Berman on storytelling and the sense of possibility.
The Philadelphia Orchestra reported the other day that it faced the possibility of "profound change. It's long seemed to me that orchestras need to reinvent themselves as educational institutions. A recent NEH teacher-training institute supplied plenty of ammunition.
To refer to the Taliban as a medieval madness is to insult the Dark Ages
Astrophysicist dismayed by inclusion of Pluto on otherwise strong release.

SF Arts iPhone App

A new iPhone tool for Bay Area culture vultures debuts
"Gross Clinic" photos sent to journalists (including me) were mischaracterized by Philadelphia Museum. Now posted: the accurate post-conservation image.

Breaking news: Pletnev pulls out


Today's entry: Mark Twain on critics.

A Farewell To Kodachrome

Having Asked For The Last Roll, Photographer Steve McCurry Picks 36 Final Images


Is it a publicist's job to make sure people like their clients personally?
When Morris Graves' reputation was fogged with the dewy breath of his mythy-minded admirers, Charles Krafft and Larry Reid cleared it with satire.
Perhaps a Dr. Dre/Kyle Gann collaboration would be appropriate here?

New jazz in old Italy

Siena, the Tuscan hilltowns and Soriano nel Cimino are alive with the sounds of now

The Joy Of Singing Badly

It's not all about singin' pretty
Several reasons why this is not an entirely satisfying resolution for portrait of a mistress who launched 100 lawyers' briefs.

No more Sunny boy

Art on the Bollywood rebound

Bollywood posters not only reflect a graphic cultural stew, they have inspired one, sampling art and advertising from around the East and contributing to a wildly hybrid global tide

Elder Lee: Konitz At 82

Konitz is the epitome of the jazz soloist who tries never to play anything the same way twice, never coasts on clichés, even his own


This week's video: Maria Callas interviewed by Edward R. Murrow on "Person to Person" in 1958.


Today's entry: Teller on art for art's sake.

As Art From Latin America Grows

In Importance: Patricia Phelps de Cisneros Provides Knowledge With A Book Series

Mitch Miller And Bird

Jazz listeners tended to forgive Miller the shallowness of his pop pap because he played with Charlie Parker.
Has there ever been a good classical music video?
Taking August off in Seattle is bizarre
On semantics, string theory and Ringo Starr's hairdo


melt in plots not scores
33 grants out of 200 applications reviewed. $14mm appropriated. Stiffer competition than ever before. Where else can you get a four-year $1.1 million grant?

Gustav Mahler in the Congo

Another breakthrough for the birthday boy

Night thoughts

Dark reflections on a senior moment.


Today's entry: Brooke Berman on suffering and laughter.

It's Better Than Google Earth

Spain Gets A View Of The Hudson River. Could This Possibly Be A Breakthrough?

Burning Man for Yogis

A yoga and music festival in the California mountains inspires comparisons with a more well-known festival in the nearby Nevada desert

Mitch(ell) Miller, R.I.P.

The producer of "Mama Will Bark" was also a great classical oboist. Hear him play Sibelius' "Swan of Tuonela" with Leopold Stokowski.
But he thought William Burroughs wrote "half of a good book." The book was "Naked Lunch."
Dobrzynski, Goldblatt, Kallir, Gibson all take an offstage bow. I'm left, though, with some nagging misgivings about the restitution settlement.


plus la change

What Would Yehudi Do?

I began speculating about what certain celebrated musicians of the past might do
I'm talking about "Pops" at New York's Bryant Park on Aug. 11. The New Yorker, alas, got the date wrong.

Mahler's busiest week

Pilobolus and Art Spiegelman; Bill T. Jones and Merce Cunningham; Rezo Gabriadze and the Battle of Stalingrad; Pichet Klunchun and Thai classical dance

Curatorial Standards Sink

Celebrities Are The New Artists: Not Just Hopper, Nimoy and Dylan...Where Will It End?

Home team strikes out

"A Little Night Music" re-reviewed, with Elaine Stritch and Bernadette Peters.


Alan Bennett on the trouble with being a king.

About this Archive

This page is an archive of entries from August 2010 listed from newest to oldest.

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