GLENN LONEY'S ARTS RAMBLES
Report for The Week of October 10 to 16, 2011
THIS WAS THE WEEK THAT WAS…
Friends were heading down to the Wall Street Area to protest the on going Banker/Broker Stampede for Greed, Corruption, Outrageous Wealth, Dishonesty, Tax Havens, Power, Destruction of Unions & the Middle Class, as well as Freedom from Prosecution for their Lies & Scams.
Trapped at this Keyboard & Monitor, I nonetheless sent down some Supplies for the Sit Ins, waiting to hear on WQXR some on site reports of the Actions & Re Actions.
On the Sit Ins, at least.
But the Campaign for Funding to continue the Broadcasting of "Good Music" on WQXR raged ever onward.
There was a time when WQXR was always identified as The Radio Station of the New York Times.
Then the Times dumped one of the few good things it had to offer the Public.
Miss Management at the Times? Or the sudden on set of Mega Newspaper Death?
Initially, however, it was surprising—as well as Disappointing—that Major Media, both Print & Broadcast, chose to ignore what was happening down in the Financial District.
As well as spreading across America…
This was & promises to continue to be the Real Street Theatre of our day.
Some Pundits complained that the Sit In Protestors Had No Agenda: whatever that was supposed to mean.
The Leaders of the French Revolution certainly had Agendas: Heads Rolled in the Gutters…
Is that what we want? Will beheading all CEOs who make more than $10,000,000 per year really change anything?
It won't create Jobs. Maybe only Steve Jobs could do that, but he's dead & in either Word Processing Heaven or Code Writing Paradise.
As for Agendas, it is already very clear what Needs To Be Done to Put America Back To Work, as well as to Repair a Broken Nation.
The Republicans have made it equally clear that their One Item Agenda is to make Obama a One Term President.
That is Not Going To Save America. Nor are the Democrats, who don't seem to have any clear cut Agendas at all.
Seen against this Gargantuan Struggle—waged both in Wall Street & in Main Street—mere Theatre Productions in New York seem puny indeed.
Stay Tuned, if not to WQXR…
PASSING GLANCES AT SCENES SEEN:
•Broadway's Own Paul Gemignani Gives "Our Regards to Broadway" from MSM…
•Steichen's Vintage Photos & Stieglitz's Artists Emerge from Met Museum Vaults!
•Stop! Don't Take That Bus! Watch Out for Born Again Christians & Arson!
•Man & Boy on 42nd Street: Father Pimps Son To Save Big Business Deal!
•Thursday Gallery Night on 57th Street: So Much Art—So Little Time To See It!
•AIDS Support Group Metaphorically on the Raft of the Medusa: Shark Alert!
•Marta Eggerth Still Singing at 99: The Queen of Viennese Operetta Returns!
•Garment Workers: Awake & Sing! Pins & Needles Revue Makes a Comeback!
•Best Cymbeline Staging Ever by Fiasco Theatre Definitely No Fiasco…
•Chinese Slave Labor Children Made Your iPad: Mike Daisey's Steve Jobs Takedown…
End of Week Rambles Summary:
Giving "Regards to Broadway" Way Up on Broadway at the Manhattan School of Music…
What a wonderful evening of Broadway Music & Song this concert at the Manhattan School of Music was!
It was not only conducted—but also Presided Over—by Paul Gemignani, who is Steven Sondheim's Conductor of Choice.
A number of Musical Samplers of Broadway Hits by major composers & lyricists book ended some outstanding solos & duets, featuring Kate Baldwin & Alexander Gemignani.
There was nothing in the MSM Program about Nepotism, but lots of glittering Credits for all of these shining Talents.
Usually—at MSM, Juilliard, & Mannes—such programs are showcases for the students. In this case, it was the MSM Chamber Sinfonia on parade. With a few Stars to help out…
There was a lot of Sondheim, but also Cole Porter, Frank Loesser, Leonard Bernstein, Strouse & Adams, Bock & Harnick, Adler & Ross, as well as Rodgers & Hammerstein.
A Musical Feast. But One Night Only…
Student performed Opera Productions have only three showings at MSM & Juilliard, so you may want to get the monthly program schedules by mail or on line, in order to miss none of these great Musical Events!
Edward Steichen's Photos Among Alfred Stieglitz's Treasures:
Plus His Gallery 291 Artists at the Met Museum: Raiding the Vaults!
Looking at the "Pictorialist" Vintage Photographs Alfred Stieglitz donated to the Met Museum back in 1933 was like peering through a Window into the Past.
So many of these often artistically staged scenes were on the walls of homes & schools in the Depression Era 1930s that some of them in this show were also like Old Friends.
Some of the most evocative are by Edward Steichen. Certainly, Storm in the Garden of the Gods still conjures up romantic visions.
Also on view are photo scenes & photo portraits by such talents as Adolf de Meyer, Alvin Langdon Coburn, Gertrude Käsebier, F. Holland Day, & Clarence White.
Back in the mid 1930s—when Your Arts Reporter was growing up—we couldn't get enough of Images of Isadora Duncan dancing or posing!
But, rather than attempt to describe various Seminal Photos—some of which look like they were left in the Developing Solution too long—a few digital samples will suffice.
This visual testimony will also show you some of the Treasures that Alfred Stieglitz retained from works by the Artists he represented in his Gallery 291. Most of these came to the Met in 1949, as part of the Stieglitz Estate.
Among the now famed Painters, Sculptors, & Collagists are: Arthur Dove, Marsden Hartley, Georgia O'Keeffe, Henri Matisse, Francis Picabia, Charles Demuth, Pablo Picasso, Vasily Kandinsky, & John Marin.
Appropriately enough, this show is titled: Stieglitz & His Artists: Matisse to O'Keeffee…
Over at 59E59, Starry Night Theatre Gives Audiences a Flaming BUS Ride!
In the smallest of 59E59's theatre spaces, the audience four squared the center stage production of Bus.
It was introduced by a girl who seemed rather like the Stage Manager for Thornton Wilder's Our Town.
The Bus itself was a mock up of some wood planks & railings.
We were to imagine that it belonged to a Born Again Christian Church Fellowship, just up the hill from the Service Station, on whose property it was stranded.
The Station Owner wanted it gone.
His Super Pious Ex Wife & the rest of the Christians up the hill regarded the Bus as a Sign Post—if not toward Heaven—at least toward the actual Church.
A Complication arises, in that the Station Owner's son & another male teen are Sexually Experimenting in the bus late at night…
Well, the Bus catches fire & you can guess the Rest…
As Decent, Right Thinking, God Fearing Christians often say: God Hates Fags!
Frank Langella Pretends To Be a Slippery Romanian Financier in Terence Rattigan's Man & Boy.
If you have Aisle Seat Tickets with American Airlines for its very own American Airlines Theatre on 42nd Street, you might want to re schedule for the next Roundabout Theatre production there.
Currently, they are showing Terence Rattigan's Man & Boy, which is set in a mythical Greenwich Village way back in 1934, in the Depths of the Great Depression.
The only reason Your Roving Arts Reporter can imagine for reviving this unsavory & unbelievable drama is that someone at Roundabout thought it had some Resonance with the current Financial Scandals, involving Unscrupulous Hedge Fund Managers & Scum Bag Bankers.
Frank Langella—using his best Fake Romanian Accent—is desperately trying to save a Questionable Deal by using his long estranged Son [Adam Driver] as Bait for a rich & powerful New York Financier, who he knows fancies Attractive Young Men.
This, today, would be rather like George Soros offering such dangerous bait—Male or Female, for choice—to the likes of Robert Rubin, Tim Geithner, or, say, Henry Kravis.
But, in Rattigan's fevered 1930s Imagination, it had to be the Scammer's Own Son. Not a Hired Escort or Hostess…
Gallery Night Comes Again!
On Thursday Evening this week, all the Galleries on 57th Street had what they were pleased to call Gallery Night. Not very original, but who said Gallery Owners needed to be Original?
They leave that to the Artists whose Masterpieces—or, in some cases, Minorpieces—they are hawking!
Gallery Maps abound, especially when the Owners have declared some kind of ArtWeek or Gallery Week. There seem to be hundreds, even thousands, of Galleries in Manhattan.
For GlennLoneyArtsArchive.com, Your Roving Arts Reporter & his Web Editor & Colleague, Scott Bennett, already receive a Plethora of Snail Mailed & E Mailed Invitations to various Openings.
We cannot afford to go to Art Basel Miami, as no one pays us for what we see & report, even on 57th Street.
I do have a Month Unlimited Senior Metrocard, so I can manage a jaunt down to Ana Tzarev & St. Etienne, both of which are having Openings this Gallery Night week.
Lovers of German & Austrian Expressionism, will surely want to check out St. Etienne's THE LADY & THE TRAMP: Images of Women in Austrian & German Art.
A Major Dividend at each new St. Etienne show is the accompanying Essay by Jane Kallir, whose father, Otto Kallir, founded the gallery, first in Vienna, then in Paris, & fleeing the Nazis, finally in Manhattan.
The name of the current show, The Lady & the Tramp, well describes—in Jazz Age terms—the largely negative Male Attitudes toward Women in the Vienna of such artists as Gustav Klimt, Max Klinger, & Oscar Kokoschka.
"Madonna vs. Whore" is another Male Imagined Dichotomy. But this was also the Vienna of Sigmund Freud who was not quite as simplistic as Klinger & Klimt…
In the same building as St. Etienne are a number of adventurous galleries. As the Elevator was descending, I spotted one gallery with an Orosco show, but its metal grill was also descending.
At the Eleanor Ettinger Gallery—on another floor of descent—if you are on West 57th, do check out Daniel Greene, N. A., New York's Hot Mix.
Daniel Greene—who has painted himself before a gleaming Locomotive tile in the Grand Central Station Subway—is a wonderfully Realist painter. Better than John Currin, not least because his subjects are more interesting…
Greene's paintings of various Subway Station Signature Tiles make them look better & brighter than they do in the best of photographs, my INFOTOGRAPHY™ images included…
His canvases of Auction Scenes offer him the opportunity to demonstrate his Virtuosity in, say, representing a rare decorated Chinese bowl, against a richly patterned Oriental Carpet.
Vermeer & Frans Hals might well recognize a fellow spirit in Greene's detailed brushwork.
Even the Auction Attendant looks alive & human!
At Ana Tzarev's handsome two story gallery on 57th, the new show features again the Inimitable Brush & Lavishly Applied Color Palette of Ana, but this time focusing on Monet's Garden at Giverny…
The handsome invitation for Impressions from Monet's Garden presents a very bold interpretation of the Water Lilies that Monet's own brush has made so famous.
It would seem that Ana Tzarev is keeping Windsor & Newton—if not Sherwin Williams—in business, so generously does she slather on the Pigments!
If such Galleries as Maxwell Davidson, Hirschl & Adler, or Knoedler—who always send very handsome Invitations & sometimes, even Catalogues—were to offer to pay for Listings & Reports, Scott & I would be able to extend Our Coverage.
But we don't have any Federal Subsidies & certainly not any Bailouts…
Don't Fall Off the Raft of the Medusa—Even in an AIDS Support Group: Sharks in the Waters!
There they are! In that famous painting, desperate Survivors of a Shipwreck are crowded onto a small log raft in stormy seas, with sharks circling round: The Raft of the Medusa!
In Joe Pintauro's play—at the Cherry Lane Theatre, as part of the Stripp3D Festival—we are almost in the middle of what seems to be a Support Session for Victims of AIDS—both Straight & Gay—as well as their friends or Lovers.
It's a raucous production, at times threatening to involve close seated members of the audience.
Your Roving Arts Reporter found the concept of a Young Man who wanted to be a Rabbi, but who had a Lover & was dying of AIDS, an Interesting Conceit.
It reminded me of Brother Jonathan, a Franciscan Monk—famed in his time for creating Street Theatre—who was my next desk colleague at Brooklyn College in the Theatre Department.
A member of Lee Strasberg's Actors Studio & a Playwright as well, Brother Jonathan had a Problem, with which he constantly wrestled: He liked Men.
Not Altar Boys, unlike some of his Priestly Co Religionists!
Nonetheless, Franciscans, Salesians, Dominicans, even Trappists, are all supposed to be Celibate.
[This is In Imitation of Christ, that famed Celibate…]
But AIDS did him in.
Not Christ, but Brother Jonathan…
It was a sad loss for all of us in theatre. He was a Good Man & a Generous Teacher.
Watch Out for Vegans at Ollie's!
At Ollie's, as usual, I ordered Little Bit of Everything Nooodle Soup. But only with the Vegtables & Shrimp.
NO CHICKEN or MEAT!
The beaten down Couple next to me perked up: Oh, you must be a Vegan! A Fellow Spirit!
No. Not at all. I am a Methodist, although I have very little Method left.
Actually, I am Too Old to be able to chew the Chicken & Meat.
The Shrimp is OK, even if it's Trayff, as Methodists don't have any Food Laws that would Condemn them to Hell if they broke them…
The hard faced Woman then said: If you're not a Vegan, then we have nothing to say to you!
To which I responded: But I think you ought to know that even a Carrot, when you pull it up out of the ground, makes tiny little squeaks of Pain!
Its tiny Rootlets are being torn apart, but its pathetic Cries are too high pitched for Human Ears…
The now angry Man protested: But Carrots don't have Eyes! They cannot see. They cannot feel Pain!
But what can you say about Potatoes? They do have Eyes. You can even grow new Potatoes with those Eyes!
They turned away to read their Fortunes, also eating the Fortune Cookies, which were not made of Meat or Milk Products.
Your Fortune: You will meet a Vache qui rit very soon. Do NOT try to Milk her…
Still Singing at Age 99! The Ageless Marta Eggerth Returns to Manhattan in Song!
Marta Eggerth is that very rare thing: a Living Legend!
Her Career in Musical Comedy, Operetta, Opera, & Films spans more than Eight Decades!
Today, the charming, twinkling, witty Marta Eggerth is 99 years old & still able to sing. On Key, with Expression!
This past week, she shared Memories with members of the Vocal Record Collectors Society—VRCS—at Christ Church on Park Avenue.
Marjan Kiepura, her Pianist Son & devoted Guardian of the Heritage, introduced Marta & guided the rapt audience through great moments in her long career, as captured on recordings, even going back to Vintage Films. Some of which were made in separate versions, in different languages for different audiences.
What was especially wonderful about this event was seeing & hearing Marta re live some of those sessions, even singing along with herself!
On Key! A bit fainter than back when, but still with that impeccable phrasing & sincere emotion…
Mar Jan is a composite of Marta & Jan Kiepura, Marta's famed Polish Tenor husband & frequent on stage partner.
This delightful evening showcased the Dual CD Album: Marta Eggerth, My Life in Song. [You can check it out via Amazon.com…
Released by Patria Productions, it provides gems from her recorded legacy, stretching from the early 1930s to her impressive New York Concert in 2002!
Many great Opera Stars have to retire long before they reach the Seventies.
Marta Eggerth will be 100 years old in April 2012!
Perhaps that has something to do with her preference for Operetta over Opera?
As she says: "In Opera, everybody dies. In Operetta, everyone flirts!"
On Pins & Needles With Revival of Historic Depression Era Garment Workers' Revue!
As our so called Recession deepens into Depression, it's interesting how the Roaring Twenties & the desperate New Deal 1930s are being re cycled in the New York Theatre.
Not only has Terence Rattigan's Man & Boy been brought back from Limbo, but, now, Pins & Needles has made a brief comeback in the East Village.
This was the now fabled Pins & Needles, Harold Rome's amusing Topical Revue, created in 1937 for & performed by members of the International Ladies Garment Workers Union, produced by the Labor Stage.
Now we are in a time when Unions are dying out, being deliberately killed off—at the behest of & with the cash of the infamous Koch Brothers, among other Supreme Court Free Speech Enfranchised Corporate Persons—by Republican Tea Party State Governors & State & National Legislators.
So, maybe it's High Time for another Pins & Needles, needling those who are trying to destroy—or at least enslave—both the Middle Class & the Working Class?
Mimi Stern Wolf, who charmed at the piano, is to be thanked for this also charming Revival. It was great to hear once again Harold Rome's Sing Me a Song of Social Significance!
No, Your Roving Arts Reporter was not present at the 1937 performances.
But, in the late 1940s, at UC/Berkeley, some of the Pins & Needles songs were popular Party Entertainments. Long before Steve Sondheim, there was Sunday in the Park…
Of course, Rome's It's Better with a Union Man was always topped with the more Agit Prop There Once
Was a Union Maid. She never was afraid of Goons & Ginks & Company Finks…
But Staff Members of the Left Leaning Daily Californian—for which I was Science & Religion Editor—also favored Revolutionary Songs from Los Discos de la Brigade Internationale.
Small wonder that the usual greeting on getting off the Greyhound Bus back home in Grass Valley was: HOW ARE THINGS AT THE RED SCHOOL AT BERKELEY?
If you missed Pins & Needles at Theatre 80, a block beyond St. Mark's Place, in the East Village, you might want to catch other planned productions this season.
Or go upstairs to inspect its Museum of the American Gangster! It's "The First Museum Dedicated to Organized Crime in New York City."
Actually, there's another one over on Wall Street, but it's nominally dedicated to Banks, Bonds, & the Stock Exchange.
But they may well prove to be only a different form of Organized Crime?
Producing Shakespeare's Cymbeline, Do NOT Lose Your Head!
Ordinarily, few Shakespeare Festivals produce Cymbeline.
There's a Good Reason, but not only because you have to deal with kicking around the Severed Head of Clothen, the clottish idiot son of the British King Cymbeline's evil Second Wife.
Nonetheless, Your Roving Arts Reporter has by now seen a number of productions of this Plot Cluttered so called Late Comedy. It has a Happy Ending, in that all of the Bad People die…
The Oregon Shakespeare Festival, in Ashland, has staged Cymbeline at least twice, as they are determined to go through the entire Canon over & over.
These stagings really didn't work.
Nor have others that I've seen over the years, especially when I was researching the North American Shakespeare Festival Survey, THE SHAKESPEARE COMPLEX.
Now, for the very first time, there is a Cymbeline that really works & is a joy to behold!
This is the Fiasco Theatre's six person ensemble production over at the Barrow Street Theatre.
DO NOT MISS THIS WONDERFUL MUSICAL CYMBELINE!
Fiasco must be an inside joke, as there is nothing Fiasco Like about this hilarious, energy charged, sexy, imaginative, suspenseful, cleverly edited staging.
This is not another Shakespeare Abridged, but some long dull stretches of Exposition are rapidly summarized or even sung about.
What's amazing is how a kind of Magic Box can show a Beheaded Clothen, simulate a Mountain Cave, or even the Trick Chest by which the Wicked Iachimo sneaks into the bed chamber of the Virtuous Imogen, blackening her Name & Fame with her Exiled Husband, Posthumus Leonatus.
What's even More Amazing is how the Talented Cast of Six can play All The Roles in this Character Strewn, Multi Plotted Narrative. With the barest minimum of Costumes & Props & Musical Instruments…
They are the delightful, attractive, resourceful Jessie Austrian, Noah Brody, Paul L. Coffey, Andy Grotelueschen, Ben Steinfeld, & Emily Young!
Brody & Steinfeld have staged, but there was surely interactive input from one & all.
This show should Tour both Nationally & Internationally.
But, in the meantime, Outer Critics & Drama Desk Awards for Everyone!
Mike Daisey & The Agony & the Ecstasy of Steve Jobs: Jobs in China for Child Slave Labor!
Steve Jobs is Dead. But the Memory—as well as the Legacy & the Updates—lingers on…
Dickens' Jacob Marley was also Dead, but kept returning as a Ghost in Chains.
Will the Spectre of Steve Jobs continue to haunt us—especially Apple Addicts & Mac Mavens—not only with not yet perfected Gadgets & Operating Systems, but also with the knowledge that our Airbooks & iPads are made in Southern China in Immense Factories for Overlong Hours by barely paid Workers, some of whom are only Children?
Mike Daisey went to the Factory that churns out Apple Products for Worldwide Markets.
He interviewed some of the Workers, in his Hawaiian Shirt.
What he learned is appalling, but only part of his Steve Jobs Monologue—now being shared by the perspiring Daisey at the Public Theatre—deals with this Epic Outsourcing of Jobs that Jobs could have saved for Americans. If he'd wanted to do so…
Mike Daisey also considers the Phenomenon of Jobs, the Man, the Visionary, the Misfit, possibly even the Menace?
Forced out of Apple by a stupid Board of Directors, Jobs was desperately invited back when their idiotic choice of a new CEO almost ran the company into Bankruptcy.
Nonetheless, Jobs is one of the Major Figures in our current Technological Revolution, which is changing the way We Live, Move, & Have Our Being. [To quote one of Mary Baker Eddy's favorite formulations…]
One of Mike Daisey's apposite bon mots: Think Tanks are where Ideas go to die…
To hear the Entire Story, you need to get a seat at the Public. It's selling out, so you may have to catch Mike on line or On Tour.
Yes! Mike will e Mail you to keep you posted on where he is & what he's doing!
You can Google Mike Daisey for more Info…
How About These Items from Loney's Blog Files…
THE TELL IT LIKE IT IS BLOG:
[Recorded & © by Glenn Loney]
Curious Questions & Odd Answers:
•When you are in Hell, can you get Time Off for Good Behavior?
•Are Drought & Starvation Possibly God's Plan for Population Control?
•Can an Orthodox Jewish Wage Earner accurately be said to be "Bringing Home the Bacon"?
*Goldman Saks Fifth Avenue
*Young Victoria's Secret Garden
*Sexual Congress of Vienna
*Rack of Lamb of God!
STARS IN THEIR CROWNS:
This Week's Rational Ratings—
Paul Gemignani & MSM's GIVE OUR REGARDS TO BROADWAY [****]
James Lantz' THE BUS[**]
Terence Rattigan's MAN & BOY [**]
Joe Pintauro's RAFT OF THE MEDUSA[**]
Harold Rome's PINS & NEEDLES [***]
Fiasco's Shakespeare's CYMBELINE [*****]
Mike Daisey'sTHE AGONY & THE ECSTASY OF STEVE JOBS [*****]
Caricature of Glenn Loney in header is by Sam Norkin.
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