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News & Events, ProfilesAug 22nd, 2012 | 1 Comment
Lovely and lengthy report from CBS Sunday morning on the latest with Rufus, who’s getting married this week.
News & Events, ProfilesAug 13th, 2012 | 1 Comment
“I’m not dismissive of classical music and the Western canon,” Ms. Oliveros said during a wide-ranging interview at the office of her foundation in Kingston, N.Y., where she lives with her longtime partner, Ione, a writer and performance artist. “It’s simply that I can’t be bound by it. I’ve been jumping out of categories all my life.” She laughed, a hearty sound that liberally punctuated a generous, easygoing conversation.
From “Strange Sounds Led a Composer to a Long Career,” a fine piece by Steve Smith in the Sunday New York Times.
News & Events, ProfilesAug 5th, 2012 | 1 Comment
With the arrival of its new music director Yannick Nézet-Séguin in the fall, the dawn of a new era is at hand for the Philadelphia Orchestra. Audiences at the Saratoga Performing Arts Center this week will get more than a sampling of what’s in store.
Starting on Wednesday (8/8/12), the 37-year old French Canadian conductor leads three consecutive nights of performances at the Saratoga Performing Arts Center. The enticing programs showcase the range of his strengths as well as where he plans to take the Philly in the future. In tried and true SPAC tradition, they’ll be plenty of mainstream...
News & Events, ProfilesMar 13th, 2012 | No Comments
Paula Kimper’s first opera, “Patience and Sarah” was subtitled “a pioneering love story.” Written in collaboration with librettist Wende Persons and based on the historical novel by Isabel Miller, it was also a pioneering opera, depicting a 19th century lesbian couple who settle a farm in upstate New York.
As a composer Kimper didn’t have a deep catalog when she undertook to write the evening-length “Patience.” But the opera was widely hailed when it debuted in the 1998 Lincoln Center Festival and it’s had five subsequent revivals in the...
ProfilesMar 3rd, 2012 | 1 Comment
Shaun O’Brien made his name on the stage as a New York City Ballet dancer and adopted the troupe’s summer home as his own until his death last week.
O’Brien, a member of New York City Ballet for about 40 years, died in Saratoga Springs on Feb. 23 at age 86. He will be remembered for his unusually long career portraying character roles, especially Drosselmeier in “The Nutcracker” and Dr. Coppelius in “Coppelia.”
O’Brien danced in the 1966 opening season of the Saratoga Performing Arts Center and in 1973 he bought a home off North Broadway in Saratoga with his companion, the actor...
News & Events, ProfilesFeb 22nd, 2012 | No Comments
“A short, feminist opera about social change” is how composer Marie Incontrera describes her new project. In short, it’s a “riot girl opera.”
“At the Other Side of the Earth” is scheduled to debut May 18 at the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Community Center in New York. The cast features Layla Jasmine Presson, Katherine Cardin, Monica Harte, Scottie Roché and Lisa Difiore. J. Julian Christopher directs.
Here’s the synopsis:
Aurora is forced to face who she truly is when she meets Layla, an out-and-proud “riot grrrl” with a bold...
News & Events, ProfilesFeb 7th, 2012 | 1 Comment
Ashman wrote the book and lyrics for the musical “Little Shop of Horrors,” and the lyrics to songs in the Disney films “Aladdin,” “Beauty and the Beast” and “The Little Mermaid,” all featuring music by Alan Menken. He died of AIDS in 1991 at age 40.
Last summer his sister Sarah Ashman Gillespie launched a beautiful tribute site, Howard Ashman: Part of His World. It’s a place for fans to learn and explore but it also seems to be an outlet for Sarah to rediscovered who her brother was.
I can’t carry on Howard’s singular talent as a writer...
ProfilesFeb 4th, 2012 | 2 Comments
I’ll never look at paper dolls the same again. That’s because I recently befriended the greatest living creator of the art form, 83-year old Tom Tierney.
Now I certainly didn’t go looking to chat up a paper doll artist, which made the whole experience all the more special. Here’s the story…
My boyfriend Doug and I were driving from Houston to Austin last Sunday, and stopped in the little town of Smithville, population c. 4,456. We’d been told it was the best place to browse antique shops while en route. Junk stores is more what Doug considered them. But it was a typically...
News & Events, ProfilesFeb 2nd, 2012 | No Comments
Fred Hersch isn’t a meditation guru. He’s a composer and jazz pianist. But he does know something about that elusive goal of living in the moment.
“If you think too far ahead you drop the ball. This is why tennis and jazz are very similar,” he says, in the documentary “The Lives of Fred Hersch.” He continues, “you have to play what is in front of you and what appears, and react to it.”
On Friday night he’ll be performing a solo piano concert at Chapin Hall in Williamstown, Mass. “People should come expecting original music, and definitely some things by Thelonious Monk...
News & Events, ProfilesJan 20th, 2012 | No Comments
For the past two holiday seasons, fans of Broadway musicals have had special treats under the Christmas tree – the collected lyrics of Stephen Sondheim, issued in matching volumes during the past two autumns. “Finishing A Hat” (volume 1) and “Look, I Made A Hat” (volume 2) are coffee table-size books that include not just the lyrics for legendary shows like “West Side Story,” “A Little Night Music” and “Sweeney Todd,” but also extensive commentary and reminisces by Sondheim. (The books’ titles reference a song from “Sunday in the Park With George.”)
In one passage,...