With input from three choreographer-dance scholars, fine art journalist Natalie Cenci answers the questions “What is contemporary dance?” (and how does it differ between the U.S. and Europe), “How does contemporary dance differ from performance art?”, and how a beginner should approach watching the genre.
Scott Beauchamp: “The spiritually inverted radicals of the Sixties who sacralized their politics and secularized their spirituality – blame Reich and Marcuse – read Kerouac with blinders on. They only saw what they wanted to see, and what they wanted to see was a celebration of the ‘freedoms’ of hedonism. … The truth is more complex and so much more interesting: Kerouac” – who described himself as a “strange solitary Catholic mystic” – “was one of the most humble and devoted American religious writers of the 20th century.”
“When we confabulate, we tell a story that is fictional, while believing that it is a true story. As we are not aware that our story is fictional, this is very different from a lie: we have no intention to deceive. So in confabulation there is a mismatch between what we aim to do (tell a true story) and what we end up doing (tell a fictional story). We tend to confabulate when we are asked to explain our choices because we don’t always know the factors responsible for our choices. Yet, when asked why we made a choice, we offer an explanation.”
In his ruling, Judge Michael W. Fitzgerald held that combining the phrases, “Playas gonna play” and “haters gonna hate,” does not entail sufficient originality to warrant copyright protection. “By 2001, American popular culture was heavily steeped in the concepts of players, haters, and player haters,” Fitzgerald wrote. “The concept of actors acting in accordance with their essential nature is not at all creative; it is banal.”
“[He] was a short, pudgy comedian who found his greatest success from 1957 to 1968, when he teamed with [Steve] Rossi, a tall, handsome singer who set up his partner’s vaudeville-style, groan-worthy gags. … With the bulging eyes and innocence of a Harpo Marx-like fool, Mr. Allen ambled onstage with his trademark catchphrase, ‘Hello dere,’ and quickly waded into comic quicksand.”
Suzanne Massion is following a path taken by other older artists who, eager to continue creating and attempting to earn a living from art in their retirement, are turning to online sales to supplement or replace their gallery ties. With the change, older artists are having to learn to engage with an ever-widening pool of buyers on the internet. The experience can be unsettling, she said.
Why have even senior City Ballet dancers been deprived for so long of interpretive wisdom about this (and many other) Balanchine ballets? When Peter Martins was ballet master in chief (1983-2018), Ms. McBride was among the many creators of Balanchine roles who — as if in exile — were seldom if ever invited to coach their roles at City Ballet. Mr. Martins retired under pressure on Jan. 1 after allegations of physical and sexual harassment. Over the decades, no single feature of his artistic policy has caused more grievance than this disinclination to bring in Balanchine alumni.
“Some criticized the change as an erasure of the organization’s history. Others took issue with the choice of a generic-sounding name over one reflecting the origins of PS122, which was founded in 1980 when a group of artists took over an abandoned public school.” (One waggish critic tweeted, “In honor of PS122’s decision to rebrand as Performance Space New York, I am considering changing my name to Personal Name.”) “The initial outcry has subsided, but … questions linger about the new identity. To what extent does a name matter? What happens to the history it holds? “
Mr. Damone lacked the outsize personality of fellow Italian American pop singers Frank Sinatra and Dean Martin, but he nonetheless flourished on a rung just below greatness. He made more than 2,000 recordings, as well as dozens of movie and TV appearances, and sold out live performances until he retired in the early 2000s after a stroke.
After five years of dredging, which saw 320 million cubic metres of sand and 25 million tonnes of rock hauled into place, the final stone in the breakwater was laid in January 2008 – on the eve of the global financial crisis. The vision collapsed just as quickly as the computer renderings had been conjured. Dubai World, the government investment arm in charge of the project, was revealed to have debts of $60bn.
“The 37-year-old Venezuela native” – like his friend Gustavo Dudamel, a product of El Sistema – “will succeed Jahja Ling, who last year concluded his 13th and final season with the symphony. … Now music director-designate, [he] will formally assume his role as music director July 1, 2019. Payaré will [also] continue … as music director of Northern Ireland’s Ulster Orchestra.”
“Robertson, whose tenure [as music director] with the [St. Louis Symphony] ends at the close of this season, succeeds Alan Gilbert at Juilliard, perhaps the most important training ground for classical musicians in this country.”
Another excerpt from the Dan Kois-Isaac Butler oral history The World Only Spins Forward: The Ascent of ‘Angels in America’: here, “actors, administrators, and journalists tell the story of one such theater that went to court to fight a local government that wanted to shut the play down – and won.” (Until, that is, the following year.
“On Tuesday afternoon, the [paper] announced that it would be hiring Quinn Norton as an editorial board member. Shortly before 10 p.m., the paper fired her. Norton has been a prolific tech journalist – covering issues ranging from bioethics to the Anonymous movement for publications like Wired and The Atlantic – and seemed initially to be a remarkably good pick to become the Times‘ lead opinion writer ‘on the power, culture, and consequences of technology.’ The hours between her hiring and firing were an object lesson in all three.”
“Spinning the globe for a spot where it can play for a knowledgeable crowd, conduct cultural diplomacy, and woo some important patrons, the Philadelphia Orchestra has put its finger on Israel. The ensemble will perform in Tel Aviv, Jerusalem, and Haifa the first week in June, after another leg of the tour takes them to Vienna, Paris, and smaller European cities. The Philadelphians have been to Israel only once before, in 1992 as Riccardo Muti was ending his tenure as the orchestra’s fifth music director.”
“An spokeswoman says that the site will be ‘totally closed from December 2020; the Rue des Palais, Nef [nave] and Grand Galleries will open in the spring of 2023’. During the 2024 summer Olympics, fencing and taekwondo will be held at the historic venue. The closure will, however, cause upheaval in the art fair calendar with three major fairs – Fiac, Paris Photo and La Biennale Paris – forced to relocate to temporary locations for their 2021 editions.”
Know Your Communities
This is a sneaky post. The emphasis of this series is on the small, simple, inexpensive things that can be done to pursue community engagement in the early days of such efforts. That would be true of what follows if our industry’s marketing were grounded in audience awareness. Unfortunately, it is not. … read more
AJBlog: Engaging Matters Published 2018-02-13