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  • Dance

    Dancers Have iPads, Not Discipline, Says Choreographer

    The 88-year-old Gillian Lynne “claimed teachers were tougher when she was starting out, adding that venues such as the London Palladium were ‘run with a rod of iron.’”

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    The Choreographer Who Took A Bunch Of Professors To A Dance

    Bruise Blood

    “My intention was to put dance, rather than them, in the dock. Instead of writing technically about dance, I wanted them to bring their own highly refined terminology to bear on the form. In this way, both dance and academics would change locations and effect a mutual migration.”

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    Survey: Most Dancers Have Been Criticized For How Their Bodies Look

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    A group of 74 female dancers, training primarily in ballet and from six vocational dance training colleges across the UK, were asked if they could recall someone ever making a “critical comment” that their body “should be a certain shape, weight, or that there was a need to diet to lose weight or increase food […]

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    The Science Behind The Beats That Make You Wanna Dance

    dance

    “The results revealed that beat preference, when graphed, looks like an upside-down U on the scale of rhythmic intricacy. Overly simplistic beats are boring, it seems; overly complicated ones are befuddling. A mix of both, however, makes a sound that’s just off-kilter enough to be exciting.”

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    Two Ballerinas Take On The Mythology Of Dance

    Google ChromeScreenSnapz118

    “Providing a behind-the-scenes look at the glory and gore of ballet, both books, in their own way, uncover unjust practices in ballet which for decades have tended to be tolerated, if not excused, in the name of art.”

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  • Ideas

    Remembering The Architecture (And Everything Else) Of The 1964 World’s Fair

    World's Fair

    “An adult puppet show, ‘Les Poupees de Paris,’ that included figures of Elvis and Frank Sinatra, became the area’s biggest hit.”

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    American Sidewalk Cafés Try So Hard, And Get It All So Wrong – Why?

    Parisian Caff

    “They might have the appropriate Bistro Collection Café Chairs. But everything else is slightly awry and amiss, as if designed by someone whose understanding of European café culture arose from having once, long ago, seen the Disney film The Aristocats. The café is poorly positioned, poorly arranged, or too exposed to loud traffic and passing cellphone shouters.”

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    New York Is So Expensive – But Here’s One Option For Artists To Live There

    Artists Coop

    “If our projected costs and occupancy rates were correct (and if the jackhammering would let up), each partner would work 10 to 15 hours a week at the co-op to cover our rent, utilities and shared groceries, freeing up time to pursue the low-to-zero-pay projects we all had in music, art, education and writing.”

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    What We Mean When We Talk About Happiness

    NYT The Stone logo

    “‘Are you satisfied with your life?’ ‘How are you feeling?’ Does either question tell us what we really want to know?”

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  • Issues

    Is There *Any* Way To Make The Comcast/Time Warner Merger OK?

    Comcast Time Warner

    Maybe? “There is no better example of the existence of our Second Gilded Age than Comcast. Government has made it possible for the company to exert economic power unheard of a generation ago. If this deal is to go through, Comcast should be required to pay dearly for the privilege of exerting market domination.”

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    The Surveillance Society Hurts – Literally

    surveillance-society

    People “who had any type of contact with the criminal justice system were 31 percent more likely than those who had no contact to not obtain medical care when they needed it. Even people who were merely stopped by police were 33 percent more likely to not seek medical care.”

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    What Should Happen To The BBC If It Doesn’t Diversify?

    Lenny-Henry

    Looks like the broadcaster might be losing a fair amount of money as soon as the government makes it legal for people to choose not to pay their BBC license fee.

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    You Can’t “Habit” Your Way Into Making Good Art

    creative-mind

    “There is no secret ingredient to artistic success; no magic routine for producing art. Copying Joan Didion’s routine won’t make you write like Joan Didion. Writing on index cards won’t turn you into Vladimir Nabokov. We are all more than the pattern of our days and the materials of our work.”

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  • Media

    Spain Bans Aerial Drones – And Deeply Wounds Its Film Industry

    Cromatica

    “Cromática 45 says it has had four orders cancelled since last week; Camfly has seen 15 orders disappear, ‘all the work until October’; and the Andalusia Film Commission has even had to stop a project for the Andalusian regional government. ‘Today the answer [to clients] is that it’s not possible. We’ll see about tomorrow,’ says Querol.”

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    Chicago Lays Claim To The Comedy (And Late Night) World

    Screen Shot 2014-04-20 at 7.39.54 AM

    “Colbert is the logical extensions of groundbreaking, neo-absurdist shows like Second City’s ‘Pinata Full of Bees,’ coupled with the arrival on North Wells and North Clark streets of good-looking careerists rather than neo-Brechtian improvisors with much facial hair.”

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    Oliver Stone Tells The Chinese – To Their Faces – To Make Critical Films About Mao

    Oliver Stone at the Beijing international film festival

    At the Beijing International Film Festival: “It’s about time. You got to make a movie about Mao, about the Cultural Revolution. You do that, you open up, you stir the waters and you allow true creativity to emerge in this country. That would be the basis of real co-production.”

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    ‘The Best Documentary Ever Made On The Basis Of A Dubious Premise’

    documentary cable car

    “The filmmakers follow the narrow limits of a self-imposed rule, and their obstinacy courts cinematic disaster. They set the movie entirely within the capsules of a cable-car line in Nepal that connects the ancient mountaintop temple of the title with a neighboring village. The film’s two-hour duration is filled solely with a dozen ten-minute trips.”

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    The Ten Best Documentaries Of All Time, Per The New Yorker’s Film Blogger

    best docs

    Richard Brody: “I’m the first to admit that it’s a somewhat tendentious list, with an odd preponderance of French movies. This isn’t merely the result of a personal affinity for an adoptive cinematic homeland but, rather, the crystallization of an idea.”

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  • Music

    Record Day Started As A PR Move For Indie Stores – And It Worked

    Record Day

    “As recently as 2008, only 2.9 million LPs were sold in the United States, representing about 0.7 percent of annual album sales, according to the Recording Industry Association of America. Last year those sales climbed to 9.4 million, representing 3 percent of all albums, and the independent, off-the-grid nature of many of those sales may mean that vinyl’s numbers are underreported.”

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    The Granite State Symphony Undergoes A Complete Overhaul

    Granite State

    The New Hampshire orchestra abruptly canceled its last two concerts and let its music director go. Now it’s planning to reopen in the fall with new musicians, a new music director, and a new venue.

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    What Has Osmo Vänskä Been Thinking – And Doing – Since The Minnesota Board Let Him Resign?

    Screen Shot 2014-04-20 at 8.37.43 AM

    “I think that classical music is always going to be here, as long as there are human beings. But I think that everyone has to think about what is the right way to take care of classical music. It is not the first time when there are problems. I don’t know if there has ever been something which is not called difficult time, in history. I think it’s always time to try to adjust.”

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    Pandemonium At San Diego Opera Board Meeting, Followed By New Chairman And Rescue Plan

    Ian Campbell

    Karen Cohn, the board chairman who presided over the sudden plan to dissolve the company, stormed out of the meeting, as did several other members as well as general director Ian Campbell and his deputy and ex-wife, Ann. Carol Lazier, who gave $1 million toward saving the company, is now acting board chair, and she declined to say if Campbell is still affiliated with the Opera.

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    The Life Cycle Of A Pop Song

    life cycle of a pop song

    The Awl charts the entire course, from the Conception Phase and Underground Phase, through the Indie and Hipster Phases, into and out of the Top 40, to the Shame Phase and beyond. (Not to forget the karaoke afterlife.)

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  • People

    That Time Josephine Baker Adopted 12 Children And Bought A Castle In France

    Josephine Baker dancing the Charleston at the Folies-Bergère, P

    “She installed what she called her ‘Rainbow Tribe’ in a 15th-century chateau in the South of France and charged admission to tourists who came to hear them sing, to tour their home, or to watch them play leapfrog in their garden.”

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    ‘Fecund Imagination And Exuberant Sleight-Of-Hand’: Michiko Kakutani On Gabriel García Márquez

    garcia marquez nyt

    “[In his novels, he] mythologized the history of an entire continent, while at the same time creating a Rabelaisian portrait of the human condition as a febrile dream in which love and suffering and redemption endlessly cycle back on themselves on a Möbius strip in time.”

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    French Court Swaps Bob Dylan Out Of Hate Speech Case

    bob dylan

    The case stems from a 2012 Rolling Stone interview in which, to some eyes, Dylan appeared to equate Croatians with Nazis. The judge ruled that, since Dylan gave the interview in the U.S., he couldn’t be liable – but the publisher of the French edition of Rolling Stone could.

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    Gabriel García Márquez Dies At 87

    Marquez-Gabriel-adv-obit-slide-VTSE-jumbo

    “Mr. García Márquez, who received the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1982, wrote fiction rooted in a mythical Latin American landscape of his own creation, but his appeal was universal. His books were translated into dozens of languages. He was among a select roster of canonical writers — Dickens, Tolstoy and Hemingway among them — who were embraced both by critics and by a mass audience.”

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  • Theatre

    When Actors Take To Social Media To Lambaste Reviewers

    web-franco

    “Franco’s Instagram post came with the comment: ‘Sadly Ben Brantley and the NYT have embarrassed themselves. Brantley is such a little bitch he should be working for Gawker.com instead of the paper of record.’”

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    Cast of ‘Fun Home’ Wades Into South Carolina’s Legislators-Against-Lesbians War

    south carolina flag

    A group of state lawmakers threatened the College of Charleston with a budget cut after a reading list for incoming freshmen included Alison Bechdel’s graphic memoir. So the cast and creators of the musical based on the book are going to Charleston next week for concert performances and discussions.

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    So You Think You Can Be An Actor, Tough Guy?

    Hamlyn with Alex Andreou

    Alex Andreou: “I have worked 14-hour shifts in a travel agency, seven days a week, for six months during the Greek tourist season, with no day off. I have handled multi-billion industry investigations as a competition expert, with days and weeks which I thought would never end. None of it compares – not even close – to the self-imposed temporary obsession that preparing for a part demands.”

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    Resetting ‘Three Sisters’ Among Expats In Yemen

    Three Sisters at Southwark Playhouse

    The isolated Arab country “presents a conflict zone, but not one that gets international attention; far-flung but not exotic; visitors who hope to do good with varying degrees of conviction;” and the “claustrophobia” of life in an expatriate community.

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    Seattle Theatres Talk About Raising Wages

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    “Despite the outcry from some restaurant and bar owners in the past few weeks, not everyone running small and midsize businesses with razor-thin margins is panicking about the prospect of a $15 minimum wage. Arts organizations large and small say they will do what it takes to increase wages.”

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  • Visual

    When A Studio Fire Destroys Everything

    Darvaza

    Artist Julian Bell: “At first, the blow seeming so clean and entire, I glimpsed a neat image for it. A rectangle had been punched straight through me and I was an empty frame, the picture gone. And I was struck by the way my fuzzy life had suddenly acquired definition, even if only in negative mode. Now I start to sense the rip is more ragged.”

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    The Best Easter Art Is Bloody And Disturbing

    The Crucifixion in the Isenheim Altarpiece

    “Of all the rituals that marked the pre-modern year in Christian Europe, this was the time for the darkest meditations and most intense hopes. This contemplative mood makes the art of Easter far more personal than that of Christmas.”

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    Legal Landscape Still Murky For Detroit Institute Of Art Collection

    bilde

    “Like every aspect of the Detroit bankruptcy, the legal issues surrounding the DIA and its multibillion-dollar collection remain a landscape of uncharted territory and foggy complexities.”

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    Why Museum Directors Still Want To Curate Shows

    257-directors-tate

    “If I didn’t continue to curate—even now that I have a job that oversees six museums—I would stop breathing. The strong relationship with artists gives me the energy to take on all the business that I have to do.”

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    Artists Plan To Recreate 1914 ‘Human Zoo’

    congo village

    “Norway celebrates the 200th anniversary of its constitution this year, and, the artists Mohamed Ali Fadlabi and Lars Cuzner plan to re-enact one of the main attractions from the centenary in 1914: ‘The Congo Village’, in which 80 Africans were put on display, living in cabins with palm roofs surrounded by African artefacts.”

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  • Words

    Poetry, Sex, And Agatha Christie

    Sophie Hannah

    “All through childhood I wrote verses and mysteries. There is, for me, one connection: structure. My poetry is metrical, rhyming. My crime novels are highly structured. I never start out with a dead body. I start with an impossible scenario. Opening questions should be mysterious, weird, intriguing and contain the seeds of the solution.”

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    The Fired Creator of ‘Vampire Diaries’ Bites Back With Fan Fiction

    Vampire Diaries

    “In one of the stranger comebacks in literary history, Ms. Smith is independently resurrecting her stories about the adolescent undead. She’s publishing her own version of ‘The Vampire Diaries’ digitally on Amazon, as fan fiction, creating a parallel fictional universe that many hard-core fans regard as more legitimate than the official canon.”

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    Falling In Love Over And Over, With Bookstores

    bookstores

    “My favorite day at that store was when the power went out for a few hours but we didn’t close. We experienced booksellers manned the computer-less information desk, answering questions using only our amassed knowledge of books in print. It was like bookseller thunderdome, and I have to say that I killed it.”

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    Random House Wins Bidding To Publish New Shirley Jackson Collection

    Shirley Jackson

    “The new collection, called Garlic in Fiction, is edited by two of Ms. Jackson’s children … and includes her fiction (like the short story ‘Paranoia,’ which was published for the first time in The New Yorker last summer), as well as drawings, lectures and works of nonfiction that previously appeared in women’s magazines of the 1940s and ’50s.”

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    Gary Shteyngart Resigns From Blurbing Books (Here’s His Resignation Letter)

    shteyngart-open-letter

    “It is with deep sadness that I announce that the volume of requests has exceeded my abilities, and I will be throwing my ‘blurbing pen’ into the Hudson River during a future ceremony, time and place to be determined.” (He is making exceptions, though, including all owners of long-haired dachshunds.)

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