People

This Woman Completely Reinvented The Way Broadway Gets Were Funded

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Karen Walter Goodwin’s “idea was essentially to provide an investment bank for nascent stage productions, putting together producers — who were enthralled by the idea of financial backers who did not crave or require creative input — and investors with proven track records who were willing to try their hand in a new arena.”

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Author Of ‘Up The Down Staircase’ Dies At 103

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Bel Kaufman was “a former New York City schoolteacher whose classic first novel, ‘Up the Down Staircase’ — shot through with despair and hopefulness, violence and levity, bureaucratic inanity and a blizzard of official memorandums so mind-bendingly illogical as to seem almost Kafkaesque — was hailed as a stunningly accurate portrait of life in an urban school when it was published in 1965.”

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Zohra Sehgal, 102, Indian Actress On Three Continents

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Western film and TV viewers knew her as the go-to actress for feisty Indian old lady roles (Bend It Like Beckham, Bhaji on the Beach, Masala, Jewel in the Crown, Dr Who). Yet she had a seven-decade stage and movie career in the subcontinent: she toured as a young dancer with Uday Shankar, and worked in Bollywood well into her 90s.

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This Year’s National Medal Of Arts Winners

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It’s a “diverse roster of big names in the arts, literature and entertainment – including Linda Ronstadt, dancer-choreographer Bill T. Jones, author Maxine Hong Kingston, Broadway composer John Kander and L.A.-nurtured visual artist James Turrell — will receive the National Medal of Arts from President Obama.”

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At A Woody Allen Press Conference, Avoiding The Only Questions People Really Want To Ask

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“The problem is, the only thing newsworthy about Magic in the Moonlight – an unexceptional, oddly slack late-period Allen picture – is that it’s his first release after decades-old allegations of sexual abuse resurfaced last winter … And now we were all being told to pretend like this ubiquitous scandal never happened.” Jason Bailey eased up to the issue, sort of, and Allen answered like a practiced politician.

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My Buddy Picasso

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“Lucien Clergue befriended Pablo Picasso in 1953. Over the next 20 years, he took intimate portraits of the artist in his studio, at bullfights and on the beach.”

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The Man Who Created Bugs Bunny

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“Charles M. Jones (1912-2002) was, in fact, easily one of the greatest comedy directors in the history of motion pictures, indisputably on a par with Preston Sturges, Billy Wilder, Mel Brooks or Woody Allen.”

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The Decline Of Harper Lee

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Boris Kachka offers a notably sympathetic account of how the 88-year-old author of To Kill a Mockingbird, so feisty – and so beloved by her friends and neighbors – for so many years, came to her enfeebled, embattled, litigious current state.

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Novelist Thomas Berger, 89

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“The reclusive and bitingly satirical novelist … explored the myths of the American West in Little Big Man and the mores of 20th-century middle-class society in a shelf of other well-received books.”

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San Diego Opera Settles With Its Former Director

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“The opera said in a statement that it has mutually resolved its differences with Campbell and his ex-wife Ann Spira Campbell, a former high-ranking adminstrator at the company. It said the differences arose out of their former employment relationships with the opera.”

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Actress Elaine Stritch, 89

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“Ms. Stritch’s career began in the 1940s and spanned almost 70 years. She made her fair share of appearances in movies, including Woody Allen’s “September” (1987) and “Small Time Crooks” (2000), and on television; well into her 80s, she had a recurring role on the NBC comedy “30 Rock” as the domineering mother of the television executive played by Alec Baldwin.”

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Actress Elaine Stritch, 89

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“Once, when she went to the Actors Studio for a tune-up, [Lee Strasberg] just waved her away with ‘Elaine, you were born with The Method’.”

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Architect Randall Stout, 56

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“Mr. Stout, an associate in Frank Gehry’s office before establishing his own firm in 1996 in Los Angeles, explored the relationship between architecture and energy in holistic designs that were no less sculptural and humane for being ecologically responsible. Sustainability helped shape form.”

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Harper Lee Disavows New Biography (Again)

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“Now, with the publication this week of The Mockingbird Next Door: Life With Harper Lee, [former neighbor] Marja Mills’s memoir of what she describes in the book as a warm friendship with Ms. Lee and her older sister, Alice Lee, Harper Lee is back to remind us that she did not authorize the book or cooperate with Ms. Mills.”

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Is This The Next Lena Dunham? (Not Exactly)

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“Most references to director, writer and actress Desiree Akhavan place a neat three-word descriptor by her name: bisexual Iranian American, often followed by the words ‘the next Lena Dunham’.” But being young, female, and a writer/director/actress is where the similarities end.

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The Genius Of Lorin Maazel

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“He had an incomparable stick technique (something he pooh-poohed as a technique). A brilliantly accomplished musician (he was a virtuoso violinist and a composer), he boasted what must have been a genius-level IQ. He appeared capable of playing four-dimensional mental chess while carrying on a dinner conversation with lesser mortal beings.”

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Did Slavoj Žižek Plagiarize A White Supremacist Magazine? (Sort Of)

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“[The] superstar Marxist philosopher … [has] been accused of the worst professorial misdeed of them all: plagiarism. And not just any plagiarism – plagiarism of a 1999 article in American Renaissance, a white supremacist magazine published by an organization that the Southern Poverty Law Center has designated a ‘hate group’.”

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The Jazz Cemetery

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“We’ve only got a few left,” he comments, adding that a “high percentage” of those who have invested will have done purely because of the proximity to the trumpeter.

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Nobel Laureate Nadine Gordimer, 90

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“Regarded by many as South Africa’s leading writer, Gordimer was renowned as a rigid moralist whose novels and short stories reflected the drama of human life and emotion in a society warped by decades of white-minority rule.”

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