The Purpose Of Failure


“Since we cannot succeed simply by not failing, we should stop spending so much energy trying to avoid failure or engineer it away. Instead, we should embrace it — smartly.”

Are We Ready For Bite-Sized Lunchtime Theatre?

Undress Me Clarence from Bite-Size Lunchtime Fourplay

“I sat next to a woman who told me she had children and normally rushed home after work, but that she liked the idea of seeing a 50-minute show in her lunch hour. Tellingly, as a result of seeing a lunchtime show she was planning to see an evening show later in the month.”

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.”

Will Durant’s Lost Final Book to Be Published

Will Durant

“Durant mentioned it several times in interviews in the 1970s, once calling it ‘a not very serious book which answers the questions of what I think about government, life, death, God.’ But the whereabouts of the manuscript were unknown before it was found in a box in his granddaughter’s attic last year.”

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 New York concert halls, listening intently and then expounding to his colleagues on the music.” (includes audio)

‘A Rich Noticer of Strange Things’ – Colm Tóibín on Lynne Tillman

Lynne Tillman

“Her style has both tone and undertone; it attempts to register the impossibility of saying very much, but it insists on the right to say a little. So what is essential is the voice itself, its ways of knowing and unknowing. An observation; a dry fact; a memory; something noticed; someone encountered; a joke; something wry; a provocation; something playful.”

Top Posts From AJBlogs 04.03.14

What did you do in the war, mummy?
AJBlog: Performance Monkey | Published 2014-04-03

San Francisco Museums Land A Great Gift
AJBlog: Real Clear Arts | Published 2014-04-03

Are Strads really better than new violins? First report from the Paris Experiment
AJBlog: Slipped Disc | Published 2014-04-03

The Inventiveness of Brad Mehldau, and Another Bookstore Down
AJBlog: CultureCrash | Published 2014-04-03

How Do We Feel About Killer Heels?
AJBlog: Real Clear Arts | Published 2014-04-04


Music You Can Visit – Apparently There’s Interest In Buying The Only Copy Of Wu-Tang Clan’s New Album

Wu-Tang Clan.

“Announced last week, Once Upon a Time in Shaolin is not just one of two new Wu-Tang records: the 128-minute double album will only be pressed once, in a unique edition that will tour festivals and galleries. According to RZA, there have already been numerous offers to purchase the music once it finishes its exhibition circuit.”

The Most Detailed Map Of The Human Brain Was Revealed This Week


“Scientists released the most detailed map ever made of the fetal human brain today. It contains a massive amount of information about gene activity at a crucial time in development — just as the cerebral cortex is developing. The scientists believe it holds important clues about the biological origins of disorders like autism, as well as insights into what makes the human brain unique.”

Of Artists And Politics (What’s Their Responsibility?)


“Do artists have a special responsibility to speak out about injustice? Or do artists contribute best to social welfare by the practice of their art, and that alone? This issue is pertinent in classical music, because the field is considered, for better or worse, a high art with a mystique of gravitas and enlightenment.”

Latest Women-Shouldn’t-Be-Conductors Gaffe Comes From Legendary Conducting Teacher

Jorma Panula

Jorma Panula, the now-83-year-old professor who trained a flock of talented maestros that includes Esa-Pekka Salonen, Osmo Vänskä, Sakari Oramo, and (ahem) Susanna Mälkki, told a Finnish news broadcaster, “They can come [to my masterclasses] and try. It’s not a problem – if they … take more feminine music. Bruckner or Stravinsky will not do, but Debussy is OK. This is a purely biological question.”

How Amazon Plans to Take Over Our TV Sets

fire tv

“Amazon has a vested interest in making sure it is present at every moment of possible consumption, which is all the time. It wants to get into that television screen and start to build a relationship.” The tool: Fire TV, a new set-top box.