It’s very hard to write about music in fiction without ending up sounding like a music critic or a musicologist. What can you say? “The adagio was sublimely moving”; “Everyone who heard the symphony acknowledged it as a work of genius”; “His technical dexterity at the keyboard made the audience gasp.” It doesn’t quite fly – the author is asking the reader to take too much on trust.
“Officially unveiled last month, StoryCorps’ One Small Step initiative seeks to help people with opposing political views who don’t know each other have civil, personal conversations. Participants can record face-to-face conversations using the StoryCorps mobile app or by visiting a StoryCorps booth. … Facilitators will encourage participants to discuss questions that could help them find common ground.”
“He illustrates this idea by knotting his hands and pulling up his fingers very rapidly in turn; it took him 15 years to master this movement, he says with a grin, but you couldn’t watch it for 15 minutes without falling asleep. ‘Why? Because no more information is coming out. It doesn’t matter how much effort I’ve made. But if I go like this’ – he sticks out one finger mid-twiddle and holds it aloft – ‘you snap to attention. Your brain goes ‘Oh … anomaly or trend?’ That is the beginning of narrative.'”
Lloyd Alexander, author of the five-volume series The Chronicles of Prydain, was deeply influenced by Sartre; indeed, he was the first to translate Nausea into English. “Despite Alexander’s remarkable role in the history of existentialism, oddly no one has made any connection between that philosophy and his own work” — until Jesse Schotter, here.
With chants like “Save our sails” and “Our house is not for sale,” the crowd booed and jeered at the promotional images for a horse race that were projected onto the steep white roofs of the building. Some protesters even aimed lights at the Opera House in order to mar the display.
Does the hoax identify something uniquely rotten in gender and sexuality studies, or could it just as easily have targeted other fields? Is it a salutary correction or a reactionary hit job? And what does it portend for already imperiled fields? The Chronicle Review asked scholars from a variety of disciplines.
The stolen Strad resurfaced in 2015, several years after the death of the apparent thief, a violinist with a checkered career, when his ex-wife turned it over to the F.B.I. The bureau returned it to Mr. Totenberg’s three daughters, Amy, Jill and Nina Totenberg, who decided to have it restored and sold — but who wanted to make sure it wound up with a musician, not locked away in a collection.
He made a number of well-regarded animated shorts (including one Oscar winner) and one feature film (The Adventures of Mark Twain), but the project that really made his career was the California Raisins, four Motown-singin’ dried grapes whose television commercials for the California Raisin Advisory Board in the 1980s’ and ’90s became huge pop-culture hits. (Michael Jackson even called Vinton to ask if he could be a raisin.)
In the past few decades, academia has largely abandoned traditional connoisseurship because it was too often tied to “great man” narratives. Over the same period professional art criticism has been eclipsed by a journalistic preoccupation with glamour, scandal and money. While the art world was never entirely free from market forces, these are now essentially the sole determinant of value. People need narratives to make sense of culture and collectors require a mechanism to assess quality. By default, today’s dominant narratives are being written by dealers and auctioneers.
Reporter Julien Hanck visits Warsaw and talks with two jury members and all six finalists about the challenges and joys of using instruments from Chopin’s own lifetime and about their own experience with those pianos. (One prizewinner had been playing them since he was 12, another started as a harpsichordist, and one finalist had never played anything older than an early-20th-century Erard.)
The Globe is announcing today that it has finally replaced Pulitzer Prize-winning art critic Sebastian Smee, who left for the Post nearly a year ago. The Globe’s new critic is Murray Whyte, currently at The Star of Toronto, whose arrival in Boston, I’m told, was delayed because of immigration issues.
Marina Harss visits with the 42-year-old Spaniard ahead of his final performance with New York City Ballet, where he has spent 15 years.
“[The collector] referred to Mahler’s ‘spectacular banalities,’ Wagner’s ‘voluptuous debauches,’ and Weber’s ‘inanities.’ … ‘Why give us so much … that nourishes the idle, the ignorant, the lazy, the debauche, to whom in music the only thing is the cheap emotional orgy?” Yes, the Barnes and the Philadelphians are building two programs out of this — and they should be good ones.
“Richard Meier’s six-month leave of absence from the firm he founded, which began after five women came forward in March to accuse him of sexual misconduct, has become more permanent. Richard Meier & Partners Architects announced today that its founder would ‘step back from day-to-day activities’ at the firm.”
“[The city government] will give grants to Off Broadway and other small theaters to install software that allows patrons to follow along with low-light smartphones and tablets. … The software, using voice recognition, can provide closed captioning of the spoken word, or audio description of stage action, on users’ mobile devices.”
“The lower part of the painting, which depicts the Crucifixion (around 1555), was torn after the piece loosened due to weak wall fastenings [in a monastery at El Escorial in Spain]. Crucially, the figure of Christ was undamaged. ‘Detaching from the wall caused a considerable horizontal tear [across the canvas support],’ says an official statement.”
“They come from different backgrounds and take in a wide range of influences – from ballet, contemporary dance, physical theatre, Stanislavski and method acting, krumping and popping, contact improvisation. But they all lean towards political engagement, which gives a hint of what might be to come.”
Banksy’s elaborately orchestrated send-up of the auction market — contriving to have his $1.4-million Girl with Balloon self-mutilate at the fall of the hammer on Friday at Sotheby’s London — is the subversive gift that keeps on giving.
It was a weird evening at Carnegie Hall. Rarely have I listened to an orchestra with such discomfort. Never have I responded to a tenor with such gratitude.
According to the orchestra’s statement, while the Lyric’s budget grew from $60 million in 2012 to $84 million in 2017, the weekly salary for musicians increased an average of less than 1 percent annually and, when adjusted for inflation, decreased by just over 5 percent since 2011. The orchestra is represented by the Chicago Federation of Musicians.
Since the 1990s, Berlin has served as a magnet for artists drawn by cheap rents, large empty buildings, a vibrant subculture and a hip, liberal atmosphere. It ranks as the most important centre for art production in the world after New York. Olafur Eliasson, Ai Weiwei and Alicja Kwade are among the prominent artists with studios here. But for the past ten years, the city has been in the grip of a property boom, with spiralling price increases threatening its allure for artists. In 2017, Berlin had the fastest-growing real estate prices in the world, up 20.5% in a year, according to the property consultancy Knight Frank.