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  • Report: UK Creative Industries Employment Growing At Twice National Average

    “Statistics released by the Department for Culture, Media and Sport found that jobs within the creative industries increased by 5.5% compared to the national 2.1% rise in employment between 2013 and 2014.”

    This Year In New Museum Construction (A Chart)

    “It has been a huge year for museum construction, with many institutions—public and private, established and upstart—spending, in total, hundreds of millions of dollars on new buildings, with even more on the way.”

    Comedy Central Is (Kind Of) Booming, Except For The Money Part

    “Comedy Central’s quandary is almost paradoxically acute: What does a television network do when its bread-and-butter demographic — young, piracy-fluent, glued to phones — stops watching television?”

    Menil Collection Director To Step Down

    “Under Josef Helfenstein, the Menil doubled its annual attendance, increased its endowment by almost 54 percent, and added more than 1,000 works to the collection, including pieces by Jasper Johns, Claes Oldenburg, Robert Rauschenberg, Richard Serra and Kara Walker.”

    Why “Smart” Kids Often Don’t Turn Into Smart Adults

    “When people perform well (academically or otherwise) at early ages and are labeled smart or gifted, they become less likely to challenge themselves. They become less likely to make mistakes, because they stay in their comfortable comfort zone and stop growing. And their fixed mindset persists through adulthood. The simple and innocent praising of a smart kid feeds an insidious problem that some researchers track all the way up to gender inequality in STEM careers.”

    Misty Copland Promoted To Principal At ABT

    “Her promotion — after more than 14 years with the company, nearly eight as a soloist — came as Ms. Copeland’s fame spread far beyond traditional dance circles. She made the cover of Time magazine this year, was profiled by “60 Minutes” and presented a Tony Award on this year’s telecast. She has written a memoir and a children’s book, and has more than a half-million followers on Instagram.”

    Did Adding More Best-Picture Nominations Devalue The Oscars?

    In opting for more pictures, the Academy has risked tarnishing the value of a nomination. “It’s hard to find 10 movies that should be nominated,” says producer and former studio chief Bill Mechanic. “Truth is, it’s hard to find even five right now.”

    Crowdfunding To Recreate An Old TV Show As A Live Experience Smashes Its Funding Goals

    The live immersive project has now raised more than £600,000 from close to 4,500 people in just 16 days, after reaching its £500,000 target last week. Money from fans just keeps on coming on the Indiegogo page, meaning “two extra games will be added to each zone”.

    Damien Hirst, Curator? (Shudder)

    “Now Hirst, too, has reached an uncomfortable stage in his career, embedded in the establishment he once goaded. On past performance, he might be expected to try even harder to shock, to prove his relevance. Instead, by founding Newport Street, he is doing something far more likely to shore up his status and secure his legacy. In promoting his own view of contemporary art through the medium of a big, public gallery, he is testing his power to shape tastes and markets, and his ability to exert control.”

    The Hunt For The Last Few Missing Faberge Eggs

    “Today seven imperial eggs are still missing, along with many of their “surprises”, but an impassioned group of experts and enthusiasts from Russia, the UK, the US, Switzerland and Finland are on their trail. Géza von Habsburg, one of the world’s leading Fabergé experts, has been on the egg hunt for more than 40 years.”

    It’s Leap-Second Day. Do You Know Where Your Computer Is?

    “About 50 years ago, we started keeping time with atomic clocks—clocks that operate according to the oscillations of a tiny atom.—and in order to keep these clocks in step with the earth, we add an extra second every now and again. The trouble is: the world’s computers, often running on ancient software code, aren’t always configured to accommodate this extra second. And that can cause problems.”

    Royal Opera House Audience Boos Rape Scene In “William Tell”

    “We thought maybe that would be the end of it, although I had been forewarned by a notice about the production containing nudity, and sure enough, suddenly she was starkers on a very long table. They were all pawing her and then the heckling from the crowd started. There was a lot of booing during that, then it subsided.”

    Indie Musicians Hope Apple Music Changes The Streaming Biz (As In Make It Profitable)

    “The belief is that the revenue for indie artists on Apple Music—even if it’s minuscule per stream—may mean more bucks overall than what they get from streaming competitors. And with Apple Music’s new social network, Connect, indie artists may finally have the definitive place to interact directly with their fans—like Myspace a decade ago, but with way more weight behind it.”

    EL James Hosts A Twitter Chat About “Fifty Shades Of Grey” And Things Quickly Go South

    alongside the serious queries came a deluge of questions that made fun of James’s much-criticised prose style, including jibes such as “Do you get paid per adjective?”, “Have you ever held a dictionary?” and “Did you ever consider using a thesaurus, or did that sound too much like hard work?”

    Christian Thielemann Gets A New Job In Bayreuth

    “The title of music director is essentially a new one at Bayreuth — officials there said it was given briefly in 1931 to Wilhelm Furtwängler — and the decision to bestow it upon Mr. Thielemann showed his growing influence at the festival.”

    The Top-Earning Musician In The Past Year

    Katy Perry was the third highest-earning celebrity overall, behind boxers Floyd Mayweather Jr. and Manny Pacquiao who fought a highly anticipated match in May in Las Vegas.

    Museum Quandry: In A World Of 3D Printers, What Happens To Originals?

    The proliferation of replicas does stand to diminish the value of the real thing. Susan Ades, who is in charge of the exhibit’s 3‑D-printing operation, told me that she believes the technology ought to be carefully deployed and fully disclosed in galleries. “For museums,” she said, “the real thing is what we have going. Authenticity.”

    Former NYCity Ballet Principal Albert Evans, 46,

    “Mr. Evans joined City Ballet in 1988 and was named a soloist in 1991 and a principal four years later, becoming only the second black dancer in the company’s history to hold that position. The first, Arthur Mitchell, now 81, performed with City Ballet in the 1950s and ’60s and in 1969 helped found Dance Theater of Harlem.”

    Two-Year Stalemate Between The Hartford Symphony And Its Musicians

    The orchestra says it’s “severely undercapitalized” and struggling with annual deficits of more than $1.3 million, a fully-drawn $2 million line of credit, falling subscriptions and ticket sales that are flat.

    John Lassiter: Technology Is Changing The Vocabulary Of Film Storytelling

    “What’s great about film is it constantly reinvents itself. It started as a sheer novelty, those images moving on the screen. Then it went and every step of the way a new technology started being added — sound, color. What happens is the film grammar of storytelling evolves and changes as well. The technology goes directly with the evolution of the storytelling.”

    Tennis Anyone? A Surprising Amount Of Music Has Been Inspired By The Raquet Game

    “With the rise in popularity of the sport in the late-19th century, tennis and music soon began to make a match.”

    Those Awkward Animal Moments On Stage

    “During a four-week run of “Gypsy,” a baby lamb from Living History Farms grew almost too big for the star to hold in her lap. Mice in “Cinderella” gave birth to a squirmy pink litter in the Playhouse costume shop, and a goat in “Mister Roberts” ate a hole in the dressing-room wall.”

    Here’s What Happened When One Foundation Consolidated Its Giving And Focused On The Arts

    “Long a contributor to causes across the board, from homeless shelters to opera companies, the organization began steering all of its funding toward the arts. Culture needed the money, the thinking went, and by targeting one area, the foundation could set itself apart from its peers and become a real player in the community.”

    Music Streaming Services Are Pretty Terrible At Discovering New Music

    “Though I keep listening out of animal curiosity for what comes next, I am almost never surprised. I always feel as if I’m shopping somewhere, and the music reflects What Our Customers Like to Listen To. The experience can feel benignly inhuman.”

    A New Shakespeare Play?! Computer Algorithm Says Yep

    “The play does have all the hallmarks of a legitimate Shakespeare and Fletcher collaboration.”

    Principal Ballet Dancers, Aging Gracefully

    “Retirement is there, it is going to happen. This is going to sound morbid and I don’t know if I should say it, but it’s a bit like dying. You know you’re going to die, everybody does, but you don’t stop what you are doing because of that. You don’t slow down because you know you are going to have to retire. You get on with it, you keep taking the vitamins, you go to Pilates, you do what you have to do to survive in this thing that we do.”

    Bookstores Are Planning For Harper Lee’s New Novel Like It’s A Harry Potter Sequel

    “Because Ms. Lee, who is 89 and famously private, will not be doing any publicity or bookstore appearances, booksellers are finding creative ways to draw in customers and capitalize on the widespread anticipation, with read-a-thons, midnight openings, film screenings, Southern food and discussion groups.”

    French Singer And Actress Magali Noël Was Muse To Fellini, And Much More

    “Her daughter described Ms. Noel as ‘the muse of Federico.’

    “‘It was a great relationship,’ she said. ‘Platonic or not at the start, I do not know.'”

    The Underfunded, Disorganized Plan To Save Earth From The Next Giant Asteroid

    “Unfortunately for the future of the world, the recent 2005 Congressional mandate to find NEOs on the order of 140 meters or larger within the decade appears to be floundering due to organizational and funding challenges.”

    Apple Music Starts Tuesday

    What it is, what it does, what it means.

    The Worst Act Of All Time – Perhaps By Design

    The Cherry Sisters’ “variety act included original music, bass drum thumping, poetry, mouth harp playing, inspirational recitations, essay reading, fake hypnosis and other artistic expressions. And the audience responded to the whole shebang by hurling vegetables, shouting interjections and behaving rudely.”

    Why Theatre Basically Sucks (Except When An Actor Entirely Forgets The Lines)

    “The vast majority of plays are distinctly average. They are fairly well written, fairly well acted and fairly well staged. But they do not reflect how people actually speak because dialogue in most modern plays is generally produced to show how clever the writer is or how gifted the actor delivering it is. The tickets are expensive. The seats are uncomfortable. The audiences are pretentious and pleased with themselves, laughing loudly to show they get obscure jokes and cultural references.”

    Those Deeply Ugly Ebook Fonts Are Getting A Makeover

    “For typography fans, electronic books have long been the visual equivalent of fingernails on a chalkboard. The fonts are uninviting. Jarring swaths of white space stretch between words. Absent are all the typesetting nuances of a fine print book.”

    Wait, What Actually *Is* The Most Banned Book In The United States?

    The American Library Association’s list is not statistically supported, says FiveThirtyEight. Sooooo what’s the deal?

    Retired Baby Boomers Become Docents Gone Wild

    “Managing a generation of volunteers who grew up as rebels isn’t always easy.”

    As The Recent Met Show Proves, Museums Need To Step It Up Around Native Art

    “That a show of that size and scope wouldn’t include Native American curatorial partners is indicative of a museum system that has for centuries seen Indigenous people as subjects. In the United States, where most of the large encyclopedic art museums were formed in the second half of the 19th and early 20th centuries, legacies of putting Native cultures on display are deep-rooted and not so easily given up.”

    Remember That Photo Of The Nine-Year-Old Smoking?

    “When she came along and took those photos, I thought, ‘Well, hey, people will see me and this may get me the attention that I want; it may change things for me,’ ” Ellison says. She thought someone would see the images and come rescue her. “I had thought that that might have been the way out. But it wasn’t.”

    What If The Only Shakespeare Play To Survive Had Been ‘Midsummer Night’s Dream’?

    “The mystery of Midsummer Night gets bound up in the larger mystery of Shakespeare. Yet it is an anomaly, distinct from anything he wrote before or after, a world to itself with its own rules and its own moods.”

    Top Posts From AJBlogs For 06.28.15


    Ornette Coleman, Traditionalist

    AJBlog: RiffTidesPublished 2015-06-26
    AJBlog: SandowPublished 2015-06-26
    AJBlog: Infinite CurvesPublished 2015-06-26

    Are Children’s Books The Next Frontier For High-Quality Nonfiction Illustration And Writing?

    “For a long time it has been thought that publishers serve fiction well, while non-fiction has been dominated by glossy reference books. But we are currently seeing a boom in beautifully illustrated narrative non-fiction – and this Greenaway win marks a high point in the trend.”

    The President’s ‘Amazing Grace’ And The Political Power Of Music

    “When it comes to political leaders, it’s a fine line between human and unbecoming, and the line gets ever-thinner in a social-media age where moments can be highlighted, repeated and parsed ad infinitum. If the singing isn’t good, it can become a punchline; if it is, it can look glib or narcissistic.”

    Why Is The Academy Suddenly Getting More International (Again)?

    The Best Foreign Film category’s “apparent magnanimity was said to have emanated out of a desire to celebrate great international works, but many saw right through it: it was at least as much about giving Academy members a specific way of honoring foreign language films so that they wouldn’t necessarily feel compelled to honor them in categories in which Hollywood films were also competing.”

    Nina Simone’s Music Is More Relevant Than Ever

    “For Simone, who lived next door to Malcolm X in Mt. Vernon, New York, and whose first interaction with Martin Luther King, Jr. involved a heated declaration that her activism was on the ‘by any means necessary’ part of the scale, the tune bore none of the turn-the-other-cheek wholesomeness of other protest songs. ‘Mississippi Goddam’ was also an upshot of Simone’s time spent in the care of intellectual co-conspirators like Lorraine Hansberry, James Baldwin, and Stokely Carmichael.”

    London Is Eating Itself. What Will Be Left?

    “The spaces for work that are an essential part of the city’s economy are being squeezed, its high streets diminished, its pubs and other everyday places closing. It is suffering a form of entropy whereby the distinctive or special is converted into property values. Its essential qualities, which are that it was not polarised on the basis of income, and that its best places were common property, are being eroded.”

    Public Art: Nuisance Or Blessing (Or Both)?

    “Undistinguished work warrants critical drubbing; strong work is a catalyst for dialogue. Isn’t it the presenting organization’s role to stimulate that conversation? Doesn’t diverse opinion fulfill the ambitions of a democracy?”

    The Most Controversial Ballerina In The U.S., In Her Prime

    “The ballerina Sara Mearns, now 29, has entered her prime. She has surely become the most Dionysiac artist in an Apollonian genre, very probably the most talked-of ballerina in America and quite possibly the most argued-about ballerina anywhere.”

    How Art Is Helping Charleston Unite After The Massacre

    “People use creativity to make sense of all of this. They use the arts to express these deep emotions of sorrow and pain and loss. … The arts can do that. They can help us heal.”

    How Ticket Reselling Is Killing Live Music (And There’s Nothing We Can Do About It)

    “Defenders of the ticket resale market will tell you ticket resale is a simple extension of the free market; that the resale market is the best way to learn the true value of a ticket (as opposed to the perceived one asked by promoters, venues and artists); and that if artists don’t like resale (and many don’t), they should set higher prices (in fact, certain top artists, defenders correctly point out, work a percentage of resale profits into their contracts).”

    Why Are Movies Having Such A Blockbuster Year?

    “It’s been a phenomenal six months for blockbusters, with Avengers; Age of Ultron and Fast and Furious 7 also breaking the $1bn barrier – an achievement that was almost unheard of until a few years ago.”

    A Five-Hour Dance Performance Becomes An Endurance Test

    “Even watching ‘Still Life’ is an act of endurance. Without a narrative arc or the traditional performance signals of beginning, middle and end, the experience of being in the audience demands a particular focus and attention.”

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