At the end of this month, the label Impulse! is releasing Both Directions at Once: The Lost Album, “a full set of material recorded by [Coltrane’s] quartet on a single day in March 1963, then eventually stashed away and lost. The family of Coltrane’s first wife, Juanita Naima Coltrane, recently discovered his personal copy of the recordings, which she had saved, and brought it to the label’s attention.”
“A new paper takes a deep dive into the connection between culture and economic development in New York and London. The paper … looks at the ways in which culture and cultural capital interact with economic factors (such as changes in median income and house prices) to shape urban economic development. And because urban economic development and culture are increasingly seen to be associated with rising gentrification and deepening inequality, it also looks at the effects of cultural capital on housing prices and housing affordability in these cities.”
Whatever it recommends, the government will probably wind up horse-trading production and promotion commitments in exchange for no direct regulation: think the Netflix deal Minister of Canadian Heritage Mélanie Joly announced last fall but (here’s hoping!) more detailed and more enforceable. Cunningly
“The first thing the dance company does when we arrive is to measure the stage. They have to reset the dance to fit that stage. So you also have to reset the time of the music: In a larger theater, you must play slower. In a smaller theater, you have to play faster. The relation of time and space in music is dynamic. I have a range of speed in mind. If the players don’t pay attention to that, it will look really funny. You can see the stage fill up with dancers because they are playing at the wrong speed.”
“In this presentation we explore the science of improvisation, with rapper GoldLink, jazz pianist Jason Moran, and comedy duo Andy Bustillos and Alex Song of Upright Citizens Brigade. We’ll get inside the artists’ heads to see how their quick creative process allows them to step into the spotlight — without knowing what’s coming next.” (multimedia feature)
“The posters and films produced in the Soviet Union and Nazi Germany in the 1930s and 40s have become totemic representations of the genre, and as such the idea of ‘propaganda’ is now synonymous with aggressive, bold representations of utopian ideals, spouting malicious untruths against enemies, or manipulating and controlling their compliant populations. Such a simplistic conception undermines the often complex, creative and thoughtful productions of propagandists whose work in that crucible of political agitation still appears fresh and thought-provoking today.”
“In the piece below, Biesenbach, who is the director of MoMA PS1 and chief curator at large at the Museum of Modern Art in New York, narrates the founding of the Biennale and its first edition, working with artists like Sarah Sze, Christoph Schlingensief, and Carsten Höller in a very different Berlin.”
A facade of Europeanization couldn’t fix everything: “The new Europe … never really made it into everyday life, into council estates and suburbs, other than when the former were demolished to make way for something more ‘aspirational’. If the centre of Manchester became like a cheaper, rainier Barcelona, its suburbs and satellites remained resolutely part of 80s England, with all the retail parks, developers’ housing, and dreary jobs that entailed. Lottery-funded arts complexes couldn’t replace skilled work, secure housing and a sense of purpose.”
The play sure doesn’t look very revolutionary now, but in 1968, the history of gay male characters on stage was short and not very pleasant. Now, however, it’s revolutionary because the gay characters are actually played by out gay actors.
The NYT has 11 bestseller lists every week and five other ones that are monthly – and that’s rather a lot of work to maintain. The staff who put them together say they consult “tens of thousands” of retailers across the country. “The number of categories and rankings make the lists more useful to our readers, and also make competition between authors more fair. This way a picture book, for example, isn’t going against a cookbook or an adult fiction title.”
Here’s the breakdown: “According to new NEA findings, in the past five years, the number of poetry readers in the United States has almost doubled to a total of 28 million adults. This is the highest number the NEA has seen since 2002. The largest increase in poetry readership in the past five years has come from young people ages 18–24 and African American, Asian American, and other non-white readers.”
Humble people don’t focus on their flaws – not exactly, anyway. It’s more that humble people don’t focus on themselves very much at all. ‘This is not to say that a humble person fails to care about her own welfare or pursue her own interests – it is simply that she sees these as being deeply intertwined with the welfare and interests of others,’ write the authors of a 2017 paper in The Journal of Positive Psychology.
Jada Yuan: “What I’d failed to pick up from those gauzy recollections [from my college freshman roommate], though, was just how vibrant and inspiring of an arts scene I would find. … This time around, I got to dig deep on the wealth of murals in public spaces; an architectural history to make your jaw drop; and three newly renovated, world-class performing arts venues in a roughly four-block radius.”
The symphony runs an operating deficit at the Marcus Center mainly because the orchestra’s performance schedule must compete with other events. Those include the Broadway at the Marcus Center series and performances by Milwaukee Ballet and Florentine Opera. In its new performance hall, the orchestra will play more dates and have more favorable dates, including holiday season slots. It will be able to schedule more high-profile guest artists and earn rental revenue by hosting other concerts.
“Carne y Arena belongs to the same category of gallery-quality, conceptual installations as the Rain Room or the Museum of Ice Cream — but it’s a world apart from either. It’s an anti-spectacle: The piece can’t be shared on Instagram, even though it is more immersive, and more substantive, than anything else in its class.” Kriston Capps reports.
Why does de Mille’s choreography seem so dated now, while Fosse’s still looks as fresh and provocative as ever? It’s particularly puzzling considering that de Mille was the more revolutionary of the two. She created a startling new approach to integrating dance into the musical via character development, and established the standard for the widely imitated (and later much-parodied) “dream ballet,” an expressionistic choreographic sequence probing deep into characters’ psyches. Fosse’s great contribution to Broadway dance, on the other hand, is largely limited to his creation of a compelling physical vocabulary,
“The books deliberately avoid interviews with celebrities. Terkel wanted to talk with ‘ordinary people’ — to show that there are no ordinary people. … The radio programs, by contrast, despite his occasional trips, dealt mainly with people of extraordinary abilities or achievements, and especially with show business eminences, whether in music, theater, literature, or other arts. Chicago has its own famous acting, singing, and writing accomplishments, but it is also a crossroads where famous people came to perform — and Studs dearly loved a performance. His politics made him celebrate noncelebrities, but his heart always tugged him toward the footlights.”
“[He] was widely considered one of the finest photojournalists of the 20th century. In Life magazine photo essays, television specials and about two dozen books, he captured the seemingly incongruous subjects of war and art, traveling from the front lines of battle to the treasure troves of the Kremlin in Moscow and the French studio of Pablo Picasso.”
“Three poetry editors at The Boston Review announced their intent to resign on Tuesday, citing disagreements with the magazine’s executive editors over their decision to retain Junot Díaz as fiction editor … Díaz, who received the 2008 Pulitzer Prize for fiction, has been accused by multiple women of verbal abuse and sexual harassment.”
“Michael Longhurst has been appointed as the new artistic director at the Donmar Warehouse in London. Longhurst, the acclaimed director of Amadeus at the National Theatre and Constellations at the Royal Court [and subsequently on Broadway], will take over from outgoing artistic director Josie Rourke at the Covent Garden theatre in March 2019.”
“Rising star Velicu, who was born in Bucharest, is certainly one to keep your eye on. Earlier this year, she picked up an Olivier Award, named the winner of Outstanding Achievement in Dance for her performance in Pina Bausch’s Le Sacre du Printemps. She joined the English National Ballet in 2016 and was quickly promoted to First Artist the following year. … We caught up with her in rehearsals to find out more about what it takes to become a ballet dancer, and how she spends each day.” (video)
“With an estimated A$1bn dollars flowing into Australia’s second largest city through cultural tourism each year, Melbourne has long-been described as the country’s cultural capital. … In a move that should cement Melbourne’s place at the top, the Victorian State Government has now announced a partnership with the National Gallery of Victoria (NGV) — one of the world’s most-visited art museums — to build Australia’s largest contemporary art gallery, NGV Contemporary, in the city’s revitalised arts precinct.”
Sanford Schwartz: “Put roughly, an outsider artist is a figure who makes a body of work while operating in relative isolation, unaware of, or indifferent to, developments in the work of professional artists … An outsider artist might be someone who resolutely, and perhaps eccentrically, wants to live and work only on her or his terms. An outsider artist might be someone who has been institutionalized, or who suffers some physical impairment, which keeps the person at a remove from others. But an outsider artist, as the term has evolved, might as easily be someone whose daily experience — as, say, a black person in the South — has kept that person from having any real contact with the larger culture beyond his or her immediate community.”
“As accusations continue to unfold, US museums have been forced to confront, publicly and in real time, ethical dilemmas such as how or whether to show work by alleged abusers — but there is no standard, accepted institutional response to such situations.” Jillian Steinhauer looks at the choices five different museums made.”
“The board of the association behind the festival, Pori Jazz 66 ry, met on Wednesday evening to discuss [incoming CEO Aki] Ruotsala’s views as expressed in an interview with [the Finnish regional newspaper] Satakunnan Kansa. In that interview Ruotsala said he does not believe there are homosexuals, only homosexuality, and said that it was similar to drug addiction in that it could be ‘fixed’.”
“UK Theatre’ member venues, comprising more than 200 auditoria, took a reduced total of £469.8 million from ticket sales in 2017, down £1.9 million on the previous year. The total number of tickets sold was also less than in 2016, falling 1.87% from 19 million to 18.7 million. … This is despite a 2.9% increase in the total number of performances in 2017.”
There is a convincing case that when it comes to overseeing the use and abuse of algorithms, neither the European nor the American approach has much to offer. Automated decision-making has revolutionized many sectors of the economy and it brings real gains to society. It also threatens privacy, autonomy, democratic practice, and ideals of social equality in ways we are only beginning to appreciate.
It has long been considerably less expensive to spiff up and repackage an existing recording than to make a new one. The first stereo albums of Fritz Reiner and the Chicago Symphony, for example, sound as though they were recorded yesterday, although some of them are nearly sixty-five years old and every person associated with them is either dead or long retired. Brilliant young performers now have to compete not only with their contemporaries but also with a host of legendary ghosts. Through technology we have established a permanent pantheon of great performances, one that can be very difficult, perhaps impossible, for newcomers to crack.