Esa-Pekka Salonen Talks About A Life In The Arts

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“Every one of us who works in this field becomes part of this fabric we call history. You want to know how you connect with the past but also how you connect with the future. Therefore it becomes more and more important to work with young people.”

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Peter Sellars Remembers Gerard Mortier

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“None of us who knew and worked with Gerard will ever be the same. His visionary, always practical, and constantly generous presence enlivened each conversation, each rehearsal, each project. Perhaps more amazingly, many of Gerard’s rivals, critics, and adversaries will never be the same either.”

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How An Engineer Practices In The Art World, And Online

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Julian Oliver: “Whether my work is placed in a gallery and intended as art is of little interest to me, but what I’ve found is that it doesn’t matter whether I call it art. Others will do it for me, so I may as well take advantage of what those spaces have to offer.”

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Mickey Rooney, Legendary Actor And Box Office Smash, Dies At 93

Mickey Rooney

“As adept at comedy as drama and an excellent singer and dancer, Rooney was regarded as the consummate entertainer. During a prolific career on stage and screen that spanned eight decades (‘I’ve been working all my life, but it seems longer,’ he once said), he was nominated for four Academy Awards.”

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Peter Matthiessen, Writer And Founder Of The Paris Review, Dead At 86

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“A rugged, weather-beaten figure who was reared and educated in privilege — an advantage that left him uneasy, he said — Mr. Matthiessen was a man of many parts: littérateur, journalist, environmentalist, explorer, Zen Buddhist, professional fisherman and, in the early 1950s, undercover agent for the Central Intelligence Agency in Paris.”

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Priscilla Morgan, One of the 20th Century’s Great Cultural Matchmakers, Dead at 94

Priscilla Morgan

“Known for recognizing talent and nurturing it, for making connections among artists – ‘an instinctive, intellectual switchboard,’ [one observer] wrote of her – Ms. Morgan was at various times an agent, an amanuensis, an administrator, a salon-keeper and a behind-the-scenes alchemist who helped forge creative partnerships for decades.”

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Critic and Pianist Harris Goldsmith, 77

Harris Goldsmith

“Goldsmith, who set aside a pianistic career to write for High Fidelity magazine in the heyday of the classical LP, became a familiar and influential critical voice for music lovers in the ’50s and ’60s, and could be spotted almost any night of the week in the press section of one or another of the […]

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In Search Of The Real John Updike

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“He forgot to kiss the bride at his first wedding. He rarely drank and avoided drugs. He was plagued by his deep love for an overbearing mother. He was a poor family man. Even the arc of his career was marked by a strange blandness.”

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Are Comedians Really Depressives?

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“One of the most enduring stereotypes in all of comedy is of the road-weary, alcohol-soaked, and/or drug-addled comedian. Certainly there is a long line of victims.” (The L.A. comedy club the Laugh Factory even has an in-house therapy program.)

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Ted Hughes Estate Cuts Off His Biographer

Ted Hughes

“The Shakespeare scholar Jonathan Bate, who began working on a biography of the former poet laureate in 2010, said he was surprised that the estate has barred him from private archives, asked that he return photocopies of privately held documents, and withdrawn his right to quote extensively from the poet’s work.”

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Why Have So Few People Heard of This Great 20th-Century Polymath?

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“He was a powerfully individual composer, an amazingly talented conductor” – Balanchine thought he was the best ballet conductor out there – “and one of the most quotable critics ever to put pen to paper.” He was also Margot Fonteyn’s lover, and he was brilliant at dirty limericks. “[He] complicated posterity’s job by deliberately choosing […]

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Spike Lee Goes After A.O. Scott For Piece About Brooklyn

Spike Lee

“Since you are a New York Times Film Critic this should be very easy for you. According to your logic I should not have Written and Directed JUNGLE FEVER because I have never lived in HARLEM and BENSONHURST. I should not have Directed CLOCKERS because I have never lived in Boerum Hill and the Gowanus […]

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Prospect Is Out With Its Annual List Of The World’s Top Thinkers (and There’s Been A Shakeup)

The Woodstock Literary Festival, Blenheim Palace, Woodstock, Oxfordshire, Britain - 18 Sep 2011

“Twenty-two of the new list (44%) are women, a considerable advance on the blokeish 2013 squad. How has that been achieved? One factor is a marked increase in the number of philosophers, up this time from four to 14 (28%) to improbably make philosophy the second best-represented subject behind economics, which boasts a spectacular proportion.”

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