Long Beach Opera Hires James Darrah As New AD

During the pandemic, Darrah’s affinity for film allowed him to pivot to digital content with ease. Over the last six months, the director has worked with LA Opera, Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra, Opera Philadelphia, Boston Lyric Opera and others to produce visually compelling screen experiences hailed by the New Yorker as “arresting” and by the Boston Globe as “ambitious and spectacular.” – Los Angeles Times
Tags: Art, Music, Boston Globe, Darrah, 02.22.21, Long Beach Opera Hires James Darrah

Australia’s Restless Dance Company Faces A Funding Crisis

When the Australia Council announced its latest four-year funding winners in 2020, Restless was a shock omission, as were La Mama Theatre in Melbourne and The Blue Room in Western Australia. It means a $1.2 million shortfall over three years — a nightmare scenario at any time for an arts company, let alone during a pandemic. – ABC News (Australia)
Tags: Art, Australia, Dance, Melbourne, Western Australia, Australia Council, 02.21.21, Restless Dance Company Faces

Inside What Makes Tom Stoppard Tick

Anthony Lane: “Many folk, less deserving than Stoppard, and with scarcely a whit of his charm, are greeted with godsends. What marks him out is the unusual thoroughness with which he has probed the mechanism of fate, as if it were his moral duty—shaded, perhaps, with a touch of guilt—to understand why he, of all people, should have got the breaks.” – The New Yorker
Tags: Art, People, Anthony Lane, Stoppard, 02.22.21, Tom Stoppard Tick

Philip Guston’s Daughter Speaks Out On Postponement Of Her Father’s Show

To Musa Mayer’s dismay, her father, an antiracist and the son of immigrants who had fled antisemitic persecution, was now having his complex images misrepresented and their subject matter rendered simplistically provocative. – The Guardian
Tags: Art, Visual, Philip Guston, Musa Mayer, 02.21.21

Think The Arts Stand Apart From Political Issues? They Can’t Be

As we are now experiencing in new ways with COVID-19, we cannot have a just arts sector within an unjust world. And moreover, we do have the means and the agency to make change, not just for the arts sector, but for our global community. What we need is a new narrative. – HowlRound
Tags: Art, Issues, 02.19.21

Defining The Struggle Inside to “Do The Right Thing”

“From the first-person stance, you navigate the world as an agent trying to realise your projects and satisfy your desires. From the second-person perspective, you understand yourself and the world through the lens of other people, who are a locus of projects and preferences of their own; projects and preferences that make legitimate demands on your time and attention. From the third-person stance, you understand yourself as one among many, called to fit yourself into the shared standards and ru...
Tags: Art, Ideas, 02.19.21


Someone’s calling, maybe me. C. C sharp? D? My scalp tightens, which makes me wonder where I am, and who, too. But this voice today is a shell’s, of a conch from a Pyrenees cave, assigned as Paleolithic, 17,000 years old. – Jeff Weinstein
Tags: Art, Ajblogs, 02.20.21

Jeff Alexander Shares the Importance of Live Orchestral Music

The President of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra speaks about the importance of live, in-person concerts and the day-to-day leadership of a major symphony orchestra. – n
Tags: Art, Ajblogs, Chicago Symphony Orchestra, 02.20.21, Jeff Alexander Shares the Importance

New Possibilities As Classical Music Explores Music By Black Composers

Somewhere, in an attic or a music library or maybe hiding in plain sight, are pieces by non-white-male composers that, with the right kind of attention, will open our ears to genius. – Philadelphia Inquirer
Tags: Art, Music, Black Composers, 02.21.21

Jazz Is Dying During The Pandemic

The pandemic has wrecked an already vulnerable jazz industry by forcing live music shows to halt. Musicians and club owners have turned to online fundraisers for survival, and point to the music’s connection to civil rights as a need to keep its legacy alive. – Axios
Tags: Art, Music, 02.21.21

Los Angeles Group Plays Its Way To Diversifying The Orchestra

The Inner City Youth Orchestra of Los Angeles is the largest Black-majority orchestra in the country. But it doesn’t want to be alone. The ICYO founder’s mantra “is that there needs to be an inner city youth orchestra in every city where there’s an NFL team.” – NPR
Tags: Art, Music, NFL, Inner City Youth Orchestra of Los Angeles, 02.20.21, Los Angeles Group

How Boredom Is Changing Us

Another way the pandemic has had an impact on the economy is by making people bored. By limiting social engagements, leisure activities and travel, the pandemic has forced many people to live a more muted life, without the normal deviations from daily monotony. The result is a collective sense of ennui — one that is shaping what we do and what we buy, and even how productive we are. – The New York Times
Tags: Art, Ideas, 02.20.21

The Phillips Turns 100

The museum in Washington, DC, founded by Duncan and Marjorie Phillips, was a sensation when it opened as a museum of modern art, and it’s been a refuge and inspiration since, including, at times, during the pandemic. “Dorothy Kosinski, director of the museum, tells a story: ‘I was standing outside of the Phillips in the fall when we were open for a while. A woman came out, exhaled, and said, ‘Oh! That was such a wonderful vacation!'” – NPR
Tags: Art, Washington Dc, Visual, Duncan, Phillips, Dorothy Kosinski, 02.22.21, Phillips Turns, Marjorie Phillips

In Canada, The Supreme Court Is Facing A Major Case About Comedy And Freedom Of Speech

At issue: Whether the comedian Mike Ward harmed a disabled teenager by mocking his disability, calling him “ugly,” saying that the youth would die soon and if he didn’t, the comedian would drown him. Comedians in Canada are not laughing about this case. One asked, “Will I need to have my every comedy routine reviewed by a lawyer, or think before every joke whether I am going to find myself in front of the Supreme Court?” – The New York Times
Tags: Art, Supreme Court, Canada, Issues, Mike Ward, 02.20.21

Arturo Di Modica, Sculptor Of New York’s Charging Bull Sculpture, Has Died At 80

Di Modica was a “Sicilian-born sculptor best known for Charging Bull, 3.5 tons of bronze belligerence that he illegally deposited in Lower Manhattan one night in 1989.” But this wasn’t the first time he pulled such a stunt. Disappointed by a lack of interest in his first solo show in 1977, “Mr. Di Modica rented three trucks, and he and a group of friends drove eight of his enormous sculptures uptown to Rockefeller Center, where they deposited them in the dead of night. He was ordered to pay a s...
Tags: Art, New York, People, Rockefeller Center, Lower Manhattan, Arturo Di Modica, Di Modica, 02.21.21

Longing For The Challenges Of The American Booksellers Association

Sometimes, virtual isn’t going to cut it – and certainly won’t replace “the interstitial socializing, the sidewalk conversations on the way to the next bar, the hungover confessionals of the diner booth, the 4 am rants about art and life and the absurdities of corporate publishing. … Finding their way through it all, giving it purpose and passion, are the booksellers, the newbies and the veterans alike who invariably leave me with a deeply renewed faith in the importance of books in our lives.”...
Tags: Art, Words, 02.19.21, Challenges Of The American Booksellers Association

If You’re A Special Effects Artist, You Might As Well Make Pandemic Isolation More Fun

Peter Quinn, VFX artist, has been making homemade special effects movies, and posting them online. “The whole quarantine and lockdown aspect, I find that useful because it means I’ve got all this spare time and I’ve got the gear, I’ve got the lights … all I need is to think of a little idea I can do without leaving the house.” – BBC
Tags: Art, Media, Peter Quinn, 02.20.21

Who Wrote A Mysterious Inscription On Munch’s The Scream?

Looks like the mystery’s been solved – and the writer was (drumroll) … the artist himself. “The text, ‘Could only have been painted by a madman,’ isn’t large enough for most people to notice, especially when it’s presented in the museum behind glass, Guleng said. To study it, the researchers needed to use infrared photography to make it more legible.” – The New York Times
Tags: Art, Visual, Guleng, 02.21.21

Monopoly Place Names Are Just As Redlined As Real Life Cities

To wit: Cyril and Ruth Harvey, “who played a key role in popularizing the game, lived on Pennsylvania Avenue (a pricey $320 green property on the board); their friends, the Joneses, lived on Park Place. … The Harveys employed a Black maid named Clara Watson. She lived on Baltic Avenue in a low-income, Black neighborhood, not far from Mediterranean Avenue. On the Monopoly board, those are priced cheapest, at $60.” – The Atlantic
Tags: Art, Ideas, Cyril, Pennsylvania Avenue, Joneses, Harveys, Baltic Avenue, Mediterranean Avenue, 02.21.21, Ruth Harvey, Clara Watson

Dali Was A Surrealist With Absolute Discipline And Scientific, Renaissance Style Perspective

Dalí, art historians say, was “very deliberate” in his art – and sketches of unfinished works also show how he combined complex mathematical calculations with artistic license in his finished paintings. – The Observer (UK)
Tags: Art, Visual, Dali, 02.21.21

Bringing The Joy Back To New York, Through Pop Up Music

As the leader of “NYPopsUp” explains, “This is what I like to call ‘social music.’ … You can use music to minister to so many sectors of society.” This summer, that means 100 days of scattered, mostly unannounced street performances across the state. – Washington Post
Tags: Art, Music, New York, 02.21.21

Certain ‘Muppet Show’ Episodes Get A Disclaimer At Disney Plus

The disclaimer, which runs on 18 episodes of the show (re-relased on Disney+ last week): “This program includes negative depictions and/or mistreatment of people or cultures. These stereotypes were wrong then and are wrong now. Rather than remove this content, we want to acknowledge its harmful impact, learn from it and spark conversation to create a more inclusive future together.” The rest of the disclaimer sends viewers to Disney’s website to “learn more about how stories have impacted societ...
Tags: Art, Media, Disney, 02.21.21

"It truly feels as though you and I have crossed an ocean of outrage together… but something tells me it’s time to rest my social media gavel and reclaim a little neurological bandwidth."

"If it seemed like I was ignoring my main Twitter followers here and outside the US and Canada in my quest to rid our democracy of 'Orange Julius Caesar' and his Empire of Lies, it was not my intention. I just assumed that a radicalized America is a threat to us all. When a madman grabs the wheel of the bus loaded with innocent passengers and threatens to drive it off a cliff, it tends to steal everyone’s focus."  Jim Carrey lets us know he's giving it a rest. He needs to get his brain back. He...
Tags: Art, Law, Suicide, US, America, Canada, Jim Carrey, Ny Post, Julius Caesar, Ambiguity, Ann Althouse, Trump derangement syndrome

The Artist Painting Baltimore’s Winter Salt Boxes

Juliet Ames couldn’t resist decorating her first salt box, back in December. Then she got permission from the city. “In the past two months, more than 100 of the decorated salt boxes have appeared around Baltimore, including more than 25 adorned by Ames herself. The boxes celebrate such iconic Baltimore figures as the filmmaker John Waters, the Natty Boh logo and the googly-eyed Mr. Trash Wheel.” – Baltimore Sun
Tags: Art, Baltimore, Ames, Visual, 02.18.21, Juliet Ames

Did The Post-Earthquake Rebuild Of Central Christchurch Fail?

Pretty much, yes. “Downtown Christchurch isn’t empty because of COVID. It’s empty because of twin catastrophes: Ten years ago an earthquake leveled much of the city—and then the local and national government botched the rebuild, squandering a golden opportunity to transform Christchurch.” Here’s what happened. – Slate
Tags: Art, Visual, Christchurch Here, 02.21.21, Downtown Christchurch

Women Are Getting Stronger, Deeper Roles In A New Generation Of Bollywood Movies

Some of the change is due to a worldwide audience. Netflix and other streaming services “have a certain sensibility that they want to see in the kind of narratives that they are promoting on their platform. That has been a great boon for women filmmakers, women writers, women behind the camera and in front of the camera.” – The New York Times
Tags: Art, Media, Uncategorized, Netflix, Audience, 02.19.21

Facebook’s Ban On Australian News Has Harmed Small Aussie Arts Orgs

Small arts organizations got caught up in the massive trawler net of Facebook’s rush to react to a new Australian law meant to generate funding for news organizations. “By the close of business on Thursday, over 300 arts organizations were impacted by the snap ban. While Facebook worked over the ensuing 24-hours to reinstate a number of pages, irreparable damage had already been done.” – Hyperallergic
Tags: Art, Facebook, Issues, 02.19.21

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