“For decades, artists have been using horror to speak to our deepest societal fears, from the wilderness (werewolves) to the unknown (aliens). With zombies, that fear is infection: the outbreak of some terrible epidemic that sweeps the world, rendering us all into the drooling, flesh-eating monster next door. … Why have these outbreak narratives infected the public conversation? And how have they affected the way we see the world?” (podcast)
“For Lindsay Acker and Austin J. Sachs, students at Eastern Mennonite University who spent 3½ months last year in the Middle East, the one-man play that came to their campus compelled them to grapple with all sorts of wrenching memories. … And for Gassan Abbas, the Palestinian actor from Israel who has been performing I Shall Not Hate in one college town after another, the experience has broadened his understanding of the compassion in this country – as well as a sense of its myopia about the world.”
“Juan Rulfo (1917–1986), rightly revered in Mexico and outside, is regarded as one of the most influential Latin American writers of all time. … One reason for the surprising neglect of Rulfo today may be that his reputation rested on a slender harvest of work, essentially on two books that appeared in the 1950s.” Ariel Dorfman pays tribute to Rulfo – and explains why his work hasn’t fared as well in the English-speaking world as it might have.
“The proposals will lead to most of the existing Ambassadors Theatre being demolished, with the existing West Street facade and part of the Tower Court facade retained. Under the plans, the building will then be redeveloped into a flexible performance space with 450 to 475 seats and a new floor built above the auditorium to house a rehearsal space for larger shows.”
The core issue involves what the Canadian and international publishing industries see as a deeply damaging expansion of “fair dealing” copyright compensation (called “fair use” in other countries). As we’ve reported earlier, vague and imprecise language in the Copyright Modernization Act has resulted in universities setting their own fair-dealing guidelines, in many cases copying and distributing material to students without paying the publisher or copyright holder. This has created patterns of usage which other educational institutions, including K–12 schools, have then adopted. Canadian publishers have estimated they’re losing more than $50 million annually in copyright revenue.
“After Joss Whedon stepped down as the film’s writer and director on Thursday, Gay tweeted saying, ‘Hey [DC Comics] I can write your Batgirl movie, no prob.’ The tweet quickly garnered attention, leading Michele Wells, a Warner Bros. vice president who also works on DC films, to respond to Gay’s message. ‘If you’re serious … contact me,’ Wells wrote, providing her email address.”
On stage, she starred in High Button Shoes, Make a Wish, and Love Life (for which she won a Tony). On the big screen, she’s remembered for Vincente Minnelli’s MGM musical The Band Wagon (she was one of those bratty baby triplets). But television was where she made her biggest mark – costarring with Sid Caesar in sketch comedy (for which she won three Emmys), playing the mothers of the lead characters in The Mary Tyler Moore Show and One Day at a Time, and appearing on countless variety and game shows, from Ed Sullivan to Carol Burnett and Hollywood Squares to Match Game.
At one level, few things are simpler than a dictionary: a list of the words people use or have used, with an explanation of what those words mean, or have meant. At the level that matters, though – the level that lexicographers fret and obsess about – few things could be more complex. Who used those words, where and when? How do you know? Which words do you include, and on what basis? How do you tease apart this sense from that? And what is “English” anyway?
Laurie Frick imagines a future in which your smart watch will know how your body is responding to someone. Then it will combine with Facebook data about their personality. And that will let you know whether that person makes you lethargic, raises your blood pressure or depresses you. “If you start training people that, ‘Look at what’s happening to your inflammation levels or whatever. This is the best thing for you and you can let go of the guilt.’ “
Are you surprised that these teenage drama nerds are now taking the international stage by storm? I’m not. A theatre class is more than an artistic distraction for students. It can serve as a lightning rod of empowerment for young people. For many teens, the experience of standing in a spotlight on a stage in a play or musical, galvanizing the attention of adults in the audience, is the first time a young person discovers that what they say matters. They learn that words have power, that their voice can move and inspire others.
Regional Tourism Network provided a half-million dollars that was matched by ArtsWave to co-create the region’s first arts marketing campaign outside of a 100-mile radius. The result: Their $1 million campaign in fall 2016 reaped $14 million in hotel stays. Arts audiences across the region increased 3 percent. Surveys showed that Cincinnati was gaining a reputation as a place people might like to live, work and visit.
The main French-language production centre of Radio-Canada in Montreal has been digitising its collection. However recently it was revealed that most of the collection of over 200,000 CDs will be destroyed when the process is completed in 2019, prior to the move to new quarters in 2020.
Widespread objective, nonpartisan media did once exist in this country, from roughly the 1950s to the late 1970s. But at the time, that was something new, too. Before that, there was no press other than the partisan press. Newspapers controlled by the Federalists branded Thomas Jefferson an “infidel,” while the Democratic-Republican press called George Washington a “traitor.” Before journalism became a “profession” in the Progressive Era, newspaper editors organized parties and held meetings in their offices. So if the passage of modern objective news is lamentable, it is also not all that surprising.
The large earthen mound complexes lie everywhere in the river valleys of the Midwest and Southeast. But “early archaeologists working to answer the question of who built the mounds attributed them to the Toltecs, Vikings, Welshmen, Hindus, and many others. It seemed that any group — other than the American Indian — could serve as the likely architects of the great earthworks.”
Yes, it was partly about European colonial greed. “In Istanbul, the buying of books by foreigners eventually got so out of hand that in 1715 or 1716 the grand vizir, Şehid Ali Pasha, himself a book collector, ‘enacted a law … banning the sale of books to foreigners.’ This protectionist measure was designed to prevent the disappearance of valuable intellectual resources from the capital.”
As Game Night opens, the history of the screwball comedy has become the history of the chaos comedy, often with the word “Night” in the tile. Basically: “Two or more characters who’ve hit a roadblock in their (sometimes platonic) relationship get wrapped up in craaazy-wild frolics, forcing them to work together to escape the scenario. No matter the nature of their connection, they are seeking to reaffirm their value to one another’s lives. Instead of Hepburn wooing Grant away from his fiancée in a battle of the sexes, these characters are wooing one another away from the monotony of adult routines, marital discord or corporate greed.”
The museum’s director says it’s because people in L.A. love the city, and donor Lynda Resnick has more pointed words. “The gift to the Hammer, Lynda Resnick said in a phone interview, comes at a time when the economy may be good but ‘we can depend less and less on the government and what they can do. It’s up to the private sector to give back.'”
The daughter of a prosperous Black family from Alabama became a force for the arts in Washington, D.C. She “was a voracious collector and champion of African and African-American artists, including Jacob Lawrence, Kara Walker, El Anatsui, Kerry James Marshall and Kehinde Wiley, [and] … she amassed one of the country’s largest private collections of African-American art.”
Movie theatres are struggling, and Netflix and Amazon Prime – and many other streaming services – offer closed captions on almost all of their shows. But in actual movie theatres? Whoa. “I stuffed the circular base into the cupholder and grappled with the Doc Ock arm until I could see the little green letters inside the rectangular head. I could feel eyes darting towards me and the black box dangling in front of my face. The rectangular head started to dip sideways, too heavy for the Doc Ock arm. I tried to lift it back up, but the arm wouldn’t keep upright. I had to slink into my seat so I could see the green letters again.”
As City Ballet is run by a team of four (three ballet masters and a choreographer), Alistair Macauley sums up a few recent changes: “Whoever takes over City Ballet long-term must address not just the legacy of Mr. Martins but also the achievements of this interregnum, too. A controversial slap in Mr. Martins’s Romeo + Juliet has been deleted; the ballerina Patricia McBride has coached a role she created. There have been impressive debuts in individual roles.”
Critic Monica Castillo notes that it’s not the fault of the 2017 movie that the Academy didn’t recognize the 2002 movie. “Real Women didn’t receive a single nod from the academy, though it won a handful of awards in the run-up to the Oscars. That might look as if the industry were praising the movie with the white protagonist when it ignored the movie with a Latino one — that Real Women Have Curves lacked the familiarity the traditionally white, older Oscar voters would reward. … This should be a time to re-evaluate how the entertainment industry missed a remarkable movie.”
That’s right, they’re nominated for both Beauty and the Beast and Darkest Hour – one for costume design and two for production design. The women often work together. Who should win the Oscars? “Personally you know which you think you did your hardest work for. … But that doesn’t necessarily translate into which is the best film.”
The number of female protagonists in the 100 highest-grossing films fell five percentage points last year, according to a new report from San Diego State University’s Center for the Study of Women in Television and Film. Women made up 24 percent of featured protagonists, defined for the study’s purposes as characters from whose perspective the story is told. It’s an odd occurrence, given that the three most popular films of last year’s domestic box office list each featured a woman in a lead role: Rey in “Star Wars: The Last Jedi,” Belle in “Beauty and the Beast” and Diana Prince of “Wonder Woman.”
Around 1,385 arts and cultural projects received at least £345m in EU funding between 2007 and 2016, of which £210m came through European Structural & Investment Funds, according to the research commissioned by ACE and conducted by EUCLID.
The race to dominate the personal AI space—to build the artificial intelligence that each of us will use as an all-purpose digital assistant—is closer to being over than most people realize. And Google is poised to win. And if ever there was a business that we can’t let any one company dominate, it’s AI.
A nearly century-old radio station like WNYC swooping in to save a group of sites that helped write the rules of online journalism does contain a hint of irony. But when you consider these radio stations have managed to weather technological changes from the transistor to the television, the idea that they might be able to help younger newsrooms navigate the choppy waters of the digital revolution—while benefiting from their digital native audiences—doesn’t sound so crazy after all.