“The caveat here is that this [project] is not about handing out tambourines and triangles en masse, or thoughtlessly plonking any old instrument on the doorstep of every home, in the hope that a child will pick it up and become the next musical ingénue.” The plan, rather, is to focus on what one might call, in this context, infrastructure.
“The online OED now allows the reader to click on citations from Shakespeare and Milton to get the extended passage they’re drawn from, and readers can easily go online to do the same with citations from other writers. Online dictionaries like Wordnik already use algorithms to construct citation lists on the fly; at the limit, you could think of an online dictionary as simply a lexicographical web interface… The advent of online historical corpora has also altered the lexicographer’s method. Word sleuthery has become a game that anyone with access to a search engine can play.”
The author and publisher of I Dare to Sleep Alone and I Learn to Control Myself insist that the book’s purpose is to teach young children about feelings they experience and how to protect themselves from abuse. But images of particular pages got circulated on social media and pushed some national buttons pretty hard.
“One of the seven buildings of the Russell Industrial Center in Detroit, which has become known as a haven for artists and a locale for edgy events and movies, was ordered closed this week.” Said the city’s director of buildings and safety engineering, “During a recent inspection, the smell of natural gas from the multiple illegal installations was so strong, DTE had to be immediately called to correct the leak.”
Teachers at Westminster High School in Carroll County, a rural area on the Pennsylvania border, put up the posters as a “show of diversity” – which is precisely their purpose. But after a staff member complained, administrators said that political material couldn’t be displayed in classrooms without “showing both sides.” Westminster students have an alternative planned (and the school board is meeting with lawyers).
That Laura Collins-Hughes chose to think about Big River, and specifically the Black character of Jim, in the context of an America currently “plumbing its own soul over questions of privilege and belonging,” did not please Jack Viertel, the long-serving producer of Encores! In a hyperbolic, vitriolic response, Viertel characterised the review — which he acknowledged was positive — as “stunningly polarized, politicized, narrow-minded and unfailingly myopic.”
“African architect Diébédo Francis Kéré has been selected to design this year’s Serpentine Pavilion, which is set to feature a roof that mimics a tree canopy and a central waterfall.”
“The idea that intelligence could be quantified, like blood pressure or shoe size, was barely a century old when I took the test that would decide my place in the world. But the notion that intelligence could determine one’s station in life was already much older. It runs like a red thread through Western thought, from the philosophy of Plato to the policies of UK prime minister Theresa May. To say that someone is or is not intelligent has never been merely a comment on their mental faculties. It is always also a judgment on what they are permitted to do. Intelligence, in other words, is political.”
The board is considering a move to require 19 WLRN reporters and editors, now employed by an independent nonprofit, to reapply for their jobs; only this time, those jobs would be under the direct control and supervision of the school district itself.
Many members of the audience may not notice that some of the more fantastic effects in the score are its main themes contorted beyond recognition. But the filmmakers do wink at the audience when they include a more traditional kind of chopped and screwed track: the slowed-down mix of Jidenna’s “Classic Man” that plays in the background in this scene.
“Over the past century, Rorschach would have seen his inkblots morph from an obscure therapeutic instrument into a nearly universal cultural meme, at once a familiar touchstone for art, music, film, and fashion, and a controversial test for assessing job applicants and prosecuting criminal defendants. Perhaps he would have wondered why his inkblots, once reserved for the assessment of patients with serious mental illnesses, should have emerged as the preeminent metaphor for the relativity of all acts of perception and the flexibility of all personalities.”
“When the Academy expanded the best picture category to more than five nominees for the 82nd Academy Awards in 2010, it also made a fascinating tweak to how the votes are counted. It used to be a first-past-the-post system, where all you needed was more votes than everyone else to win. This meant that movies used to be able to win without majority appeal, as all you needed to do was persuade a dedicated minority to pick your movie. But now, instead of picking their choice for best picture, voters rank them. Then they’re counted with instant runoff voting,1 and the impact this has is it’ll award films with broad majority appeal over ones that have strong plurality appeal.”
Following in the footsteps of unlikely writer-in-residence stunts at places like the Ace Hotel, London’s Heathrow Airport, and aboard Amtrak, the Mall of America will give one writer the chance to spend a short residency “deeply immersed in the Mall atmosphere while writing on-the-fly impressions in their own words” in celebration of the mall’s 25th birthday this year.
“What the California Symphony discovered, in short, was that “almost every single piece of negative feedback was about something other than the performance.” Another important discovery was that it’s single-ticket buyers, not veteran subscribers, who are most likely to use the orchestra’s website.”
“For at least a month before his death, Warhol had been ill, but had done his best to keep up his usual exhausting pace. His terror of hospitals had prevented him from getting any serious treatment. Even once Warhol had finally ended up in the office of Bjorn Thorbjarnarson, a leading surgeon — he was known for treating the Shah of Iran — Warhol had begged for some kind of stay-at-home treatment. “I will make you a rich man if you don’t operate on me,” the artist had said, Dr. Thorbjarnarson recalled during my visit to his New Jersey home in 2014. (He is now 95 and lives in Florida.)”
Ted Hearne’s The Source premiered in Brooklyn in 2014, when Manning had been eclipsed by Edward Snowden; it played in Los Angeles just before the election; it’s now, early in the Trump era, about to open in San Francisco. Hearne talks with Zachary Woolfe about the piece’s content and context, then and now.
When Kahn announced that he’d be stepping down after two more seasons, he said that he would leave his successor a financially healthy company. Artistically? That may be a different matter, worries Peter Marks.
“On paper, Mr. Brooks is the choreographer, and Ms. Whelan the dancer and his partner onstage. But, as a recent conversation revealed, the lines between creation and interpretation have become increasingly blurred.” Marina Harss shares excerpts from that conversation.
Vjéran Tomic – nicknamed “Spider-Man” for the athletic way he executed the theft – stole paintings by Picasso, Matisse, Modigliani, Braque and Léger from the Musée d’art moderne de la ville de Paris in 2010. He, the instigator, and the fence each got multi-year jail terms and six-figure fines plus an order to reimburse the city for the €104 million the art is worth. (The fence – who claims he threw the paintings into the garbage when his home was raided – executed a memorably self-serving piece of theater when he heard his sentence.)
It’s a seven-foot white marble nude statue of Jesus, and you’d think it would be famous by now – or stolen. But Risen Christ survived both Napoleon and the Nazis. Elisabetta Povoledo explains how.
“Like previous Hirst extravaganzas, this project is being rolled out with the same hypervigilant level of control and fanfare. And hovering over the project is whether – given the precipitous drop in his prices after his all-Hirst Sotheby’s auction in 2008 – the celebrity artist can have another chapter.” Or has he (ahem) jumped the shark for good?
“The new four-building complex, set to open in 2019, represents the largest building initiative at Tanglewood since the opening of Ozawa Hall more than two decades ago.”
A former professional ballet dancer herself, Hellman was the board chair who oversaw the campaign that raised SFB’s endowment from $3 million to $33 million.
Engagement Is Not . . .
There are, of course, many things that community engagement is not. High on that list is “a magical elixir to cure all of the nonprofit arts industry’s ills.” … read more
AJBlog: Engaging Matters Published 2017-02-21
Portland Brings Kids To Jazz
In the windows of a Target store on a busy street corner in downtown Portland is a display of art inspired by jazz. Scattered among classic album covers, the paintings are by … read more
AJBlog: RiffTides Published 2017-02-21
Spring break with Budapest jazz, photos
I went to Budapest for spring break — to introduce a photo exhibit by my Transylvanian-born friend Sánta István Csaba and help jury the 10th annual Müpa Budapest Jazz Showcase/Talent Exchange, … read more
AJBlog: Jazz Beyond Jazz Published 2017-02-21
Skrowaczewski suffered a stroke in November and again in February. A memorial service will be held March 28 at Orchestra Hall. “It is hard to express all that Maestro Skrowaczewski has meant to the Minnesota Orchestra,” the orchestra said in a statement Tuesday afternoon. “In total, his partnership with the Minnesota Orchestra spanned 56 years, and we are deeply grateful for more than a half-century of music-making with him.”
“People are quicker to diagnose change for the worse than change for the better. We established this basic effect across many methods, measures, and contexts … People demand less evidence to diagnose lasting decline than lasting improvement.”
Two of London’s biggest museums have new directors who have significant experience outside the museum world. This may lead to new ideas, but they may also have a steep learning curve…