Was Rotten Tomatoes, which is owned in part by Warner Bros., actually trying to shield the studio from an inevitably bad grade that could help kill its opening weekend?
“I’ve paid for a ticket I want to dance. I’m only 5’5, it’s not like I’m 6’7or anything,” she said. “All I wanted to do was dance.”
Michael Ball uses bay rum for Sweeney Todd and a cheap old perfume of his mother’s for Edna Turnblad (Hairspray). Fenella Woolgar deployed Chanel No. 5 (with an extra spritz) for a 1950s snob. David Greig sniffed canned mackereal to put him in mind of the chilly mountains of Scotland. Before playing a homeless man, Arthur McBain sniffed a paper coffee cup after the coffee was finished. David Jays explores the use of aromas, and the emotions they trigger, with these and other actors as well as a ballet star and a perfumer.
Jori Finkel: “It turns out that half a minute is not enough time to experience the most powerful dynamic of these rooms: our shifting perceptions of what is far versus near, or personal versus universal, as one collapses into the other through the unending regression of mirrored images. … The Hirshhorn, The Broad and other venues have essentially decided to give twice as many people half as much art, with what you might call infinitely diminished returns.”
“The piece particularly draws on the experience of Pussy Riot’s Nadya Tolokonnikova, who served 16 months of a two-year sentence for hooliganism … Recreating the humiliation, intimidation and forced labour of a Russian gulag might seem like the ultimate in misery porn – especially when it’s taking place in the Saatchi Gallery, just a stone’s throw from Sloane Square.”
“We fought to be on the stage. We should reclaim that word: I don’t know where it came from, this fucking notion that putting ‘ess’ on the end makes us weak. I would be no less afraid of a lioness than a lion.”
For years, artist Serkan Özkaya has been fascinated by Duchamp’s Etant données, the darkened room you view through peepholes in the closed door. He wanted to know exactly how it works, but the curators at the its home, the Philadelphia Museum of Art, aren’t allowed to go in and inspect its mechanisms themselves, let alone allowing a stranger access. So Özkaya did it Ikea-style.
“Found in Chandler’s archives at the Bodleian Library in Oxford …, the story, “It’s All Right – He Only Died,” opens as a ‘filthy figure on a stretcher’ arrives at a hospital.”
“From time to time when driving in the High Sierra I’ll see amateur gold miners, panning in a river that 150 years ago gave up the best of its treasure to the first prospectors,” says the composer, “and I’ll be tempted to wonder if the image of these latter-day panners, hoping only for a tiny nugget, isn’t an illustration of my own predicament as a composer.”
“Reared in gospel, Reese became a seductive, big-voiced secular music star with her No. 1 R&B and No. 2 pop hit ‘Don’t You Know’ in 1959. … She ranged through a series of releases that showed off her mastery of standards, jazz and contemporary pop through the early ’70s, and over the course of her career she received four Grammy Award nominations.” She went on to become an even bigger star on television, where she was the first black woman to host her own variety show and played major roles in Chico and the Man and Touched by an Angel.
The music director of the Vancouver Symphony (from which he departs next year) and popular guest conductor will succeed Keith Lockhart at the podium of the BBC Concert Orchestra this coming January. “Tovey’s new role will see him work with the orchestra for five years, including a Radio 3 concert at Watford Colosseum in February 2018, before leading performances in the BBC orchestra’s 2018-19 season at Southbank Centre.”
“The Colombian artist’s 57cm-high sculpture, Maternity (2003), of a mother sitting on a plinth and cradling her baby, … was stolen from Galerie Bartoux in an upmarket district of Paris earlier this month in broad daylight. Gallery staff became aware of the theft only when they prepared to close the gallery.”
A state-level boss of India’s ruling party, the Hindu nationalist BJP, is offering 10 million rupees each for the heads of the lead actress and director of Padmavati, a new movie about a legendary 14th-century Rajput queen. A leader of the present-day Rajput clans has threatened to cut off the star’s nose, and violent demonstrations have led to the delay of the film’s release. All this over rumors of a scene the director says isn’t even in the movie.
“Verna, which stars popular actor Mahira Khan, was originally denied a certificate by the Central Board of Film Censors (CBFC) because of its ‘mature themes’ and ‘edgy content’. This caused an outcry among women’s rights campaigners, who accused board members of censoring women’s voices and putting their heads in the sand at a time when … ‘rape is a rampant issue in Pakistan’ … Soon the ban had inspired a Twitter campaign under the hashtag #UnbanVerna, which emerged as Pakistan’s own #MeToo movement.”
Unlike most of my colleagues, I liked, and was even a little moved by the world première of Nico Muhly’s Marnie by the English National Opera (it goes to the NY Metropolitan next year). … read more
AJBlog: Plain English Published 2017-11-20
All there is
I’ve worked on enough shows by now to be familiar with the all-consuming experience of rehearsing, yet its disorienting nature still comes as a surprise each time it happens. … read more
AJBlog: About Last Night Published 2017-11-20
“The latest edition, updated to include figures from 2014/15 and 2015/16, found that local government funding for the arts, per person, “continues to crash”, falling by 15 points since the index was last published. It has dropped by more than a third since the index began in 2007/08 – the most dramatic drop among the 20 indicators.”
According to new data from the video giant Netflix, about 12 per cent of Americans who watch television shows or movies outside of the home admit to having done so in a public restroom. And 37 per cent say they’ve watched at work.
Justice League’s underperformance was startling. Studio estimates pegged it earning about $115 million, around what the Superman film Man of Steel opened to in 2013; it came in well below that. Whatever appeal Warner Bros. had hoped would be generated by the union of Ben Affleck’s Batman, Gal Gadot’s Wonder Woman, and Henry Cavill’s Superman was nonexistent.
“A new study suggests that the few words infants know are structured in their minds the same way as an adult’s vocabulary, in a complex web of related concepts. The evidence: When words have similar meanings, babies can get confused. That confusion hints that babies know more about language, at a younger age, than scientists have found before.”
“An algorithm-based vetting process has real issues. So few immigrants have committed acts of terrorism, that a computer program couldn’t even generate an accurate predictive model, the coalition of tech experts from some of the U.S.’s top universities and research groups says.”
Local arts agencies, be they county, city or state need to make a connection with the owners / planners of the smart cities projects, and make the case for their inclusion in the decision making process. We need to provide strong evidence of our value, and, more than that, make a case with media and the public that no city without an arts component in both the planning and execution is truly “smart” in any sense of the word.
“Hiring a young composer for the summer to write a new work for this concert is an effective way to support new talent and emphasizes the need to nurture emerging creative voices for the future of concert music in Canada.”
“Organisations often argue they simply can’t afford to pay the living wage, even if they aspire to – and that creating low or no pay opportunities is better than creating none. While this may be a blunt reality for some, we should be under no illusions that this does anything other than exacerbate the sector’s lack of diversity.”
“The irony is that some of the individuals who do take part appear to be motivated by a burning distrust of the government or else a rebel anarchism set against large corporations – sentiments that are common among cadres of biohackers. Yet it’s those very governments and corporations that are injecting the money and ginning up the momentum behind the movement. Something doesn’t stack up.”
For Andreas Görgen, a global approach to cultural policy has two aims: to promote German culture abroad and to give foreign museums access to the collections and scholarship of German institutions. “We should be willing to free things from the context of our collections and to let other curators look at them and deal with them in their own context, which might give a completely different interpretation,” he says. He is also interested in the potential of digitisation, and how virtual reality can allow objects to be shown without travelling.
“Amazon has gradually eliminated the human factor. In the early years it employed people to write reviews of the books it sold; now there isn’t even mediation in the process of making up and placing a self-published book on the network. It has robotized the chain of distribution and wants us, the consumers, to perform similarly.”
“Jazz just has new life again. The torch is being passed. You feel the sentiment by the music becoming more intense or having more depth to it. The light’s shining through again when it comes to the creative mind state. And that’s what jazz is: the ability to improvise, the ability to tighten up, play fast, play slow … it’s all of that. The idea of jazz is travelling right now.”
Galleries are looking not only to import their own artists to cities like Shanghai and Beijing, but also to scout major local talent. And some have begun to look beyond financial hubs like Hong Kong to expand into less saturated markets like Seoul.
“These days, a large part of the budget for arts programmes is taken up by reproduction fees. Museums merrily charge hundreds of pounds each second a painting is seen. But such charges are little more than a hustle. Museums talk threateningly about “copyright”, but in law, they’re on weak ground. If a painting was made by an artist who died more than 75 years ago (70 years in the US), it is out of copyright, end of story. Faithfully photographing it generates no new copyright implications, and there is nothing in law to stop one reproducing (say) a Rembrandt, in any context, and without paying. But because most of us think we need to pay to secure a spurious image ‘licence’, museums get away with it.”
Maria Contreras-Sweet ran the Small Business Administration, and now she’s wants to run a big business – the scandal-laden, struggling Weinstein Co. Or at least that’s what she said in her surprise bid: “I believe we have now reached a crossroads where it is imperative that a woman-led board acquire control of the company and create content that continues to inspire audiences around the world.”