“The outrage [at Kapoor] was based on a slew of misconceptions: one, that Kapoor had exclusive rights to the material, period – he doesn’t, only to one version of it and only in the field of art – two, that it’s a pigment – it isn’t – and three, that the material was ready to be used, which Kapoor himself has raised doubts about.” And now it’s not even the blackest black anymore.
“Reggie Gray stood in the wings at BRIC House ballroom in Fort Greene, Brooklyn, one recent Sunday evening and watched, along with a full audience, as waves of dancers took the stage to do battle. Their moves were at turns staggering contortions and graceful glides, sweeping artistry and fleeting chronicles of everyday life.”
The British director says the most American of slogans: “Just do it! You don’t need to agonize about how or why. … It doesn’t need to be a big deal. I think it was Geena Davis who said, ‘How do you get more women in films? Cross out the cast list and make half the names women.'”
“Are big publishers unwilling to take risks any more? Increasingly, ‘risky’ authors, those who’ve been rejected over and over again by traditional publishers or dozens of agents, are being picked up by small presses whose modus operandi is to take risks on literature that is exciting, innovative, or that they deem important either stylistically or politically. Then the big publishers swoop in and profit from the hard work and risk-taking of the small presses.”
In a story that begins with the director’s near-death from drugs and asthma in 1978, Stephen Galloway follows the project through legal troubles (complicated), money troubles (recurring), and weather troubles (terrifying) – with the happy ending of a screening for Pope Francis and 200 teary-eyed Jesuits.
Zoologist Antone Martinho: “Were I not an animal behaviour researcher, I would hardly notice; but because I am, I constantly ask myself: why do I treat my pets like thinking, conscious companions, and the ducklings in my lab like feathered robots? The reluctance of my field to engage seriously with animal consciousness is, I believe, holding back our efforts to truly understand their behaviour.”
Last month the conservative youth group Turning Point USA launched this website to identify academics who (in the opinion of Turning Pointers) “advance leftist propaganda in the classroom.” (Last week George Yancy wrote an Op-Ed for the New York Times about finding his name on it.) Now, saying “this is the sort of company we wish to keep,” more than 100 professors at Notre Dame have signed an open letter asking to be included.
“Former Shakespeare’s Globe artistic director Dominic Dromgoole has teamed up with producer Nica Burns to launch a theatre company focused on classic playwrights. Called Classic Spring, it will celebrate the work of proscenium playwrights, including Oscar Wilde and George Bernard Shaw, staging their plays in the theatres they wrote for.”
A mid-century modernist who loved puzzles and puns, Schwartz wrote one piece called By George that spliced together snippets by Georges Gershwin and Handel and another called Elevator Music that had the audience riding in the titular conveyance while musicians played portions of the score on various floors.
We like to talk about an “arts community” as if it’s really a thing, but in fact, art is a very personal experience, and people tend to be fans of who they like rather than the art form generally. They go to specific artists or plays or museums. New music fans aren’t necessarily interested in baroque music or opera or Mozart. The audience that shows up for the ballet is completely different from the one that goes to fringe theatre.
A study by TRG Arts of Washington DC theatre puts some numbers to the silo-ization of the city’s theatre audience. Though the number of people going to theatre generally in DC is up significantly over a decade…
The results pointed to a 13 percent increase in theatergoing households and a 25 percent increase in households buying single tickets. It even showed that D.C. theater outpaces the national rate of getting audiences to buy subscriptions — the companies realized a 20 percent increase during the decade in question.
… about 85 percent of the theatre audience goes only to a single theatre. In other words, they’re loyal to the place or company they like rather than the art form writ general. Each of the seven theatres TRG tracked has a specific profile:
Even beyond the core seven troupes that TRG studied, Washington theaters make it their business to be different — in style, in size and in price. Finding the portals to smoothly propel audiences from one stage to another is the ongoing challenge.
So when we talk about “the arts community” what is it we actually mean?
“Is music meant to be ephemeral or enduring? And indeed, are those two goals consonant with one another, or at odds? For those who take as their mentors, our sources of inspiration, and our measures of quality long-dead Germans like Bach, Brahms, and Beethoven, perhaps the ultimate goal would be to write, like they did, something of value that transcends our era. But can one write a piece with the goal that it become ‘an important part of the repertoire’?”
“In the two years of Jeff Melanson’s tenure, total expenses at the orchestra increased by almost a third, administration costs by 80 per cent. In previous years, the TSO’s expenses had either stayed flat or declined. The TSO did not see an accompanying increase in revenues in the last fiscal year. Ticket sales declined slightly in fiscal 2015-16, as did government support. Thus the organization’s surplus was created, in the first instance, by having the Toronto Symphony Foundation, the organization’s long-term funding support, make a contribution to the orchestra of almost $5-million in fiscal 2015-16, more than double its usual contribution.”
“Under the new business model, Luminato would start planning events three years in advance so that it could work with other festivals as partners in commissioning shows and work out the best possible deals with venues and artists. Meanwhile the festival would rely less on government funding.”
“The man who led the facsimile project, a proudly dishevelled Englishman named Adam Lowe, was admiring the fake walls alongside me. Lowe prefers to call them “rematerialized” walls. He whispered, “Amazing—it looks just like the real thing, doesn’t it?” He is fifty-seven years old, and looks like what Paul McCartney might look like had McCartney never undergone restoration.”