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Arts

Theater

The Devil and the Details

Conor McPherson's new play "The Seafarer" is in the rich British tradition of holiday ghost stories, mostly known in our time through endless repetitions of Dickens' best-known spook-fest, "A Christmas Carol." The little frissons of fear are, ironically, intended to make one feel snug around the hearth, and it's not spoiling the fun to reveal that McPherson's tale centers on a friendly card game where the highest stake is the soul of one of the players. Comment
Theater

Thirty Years Without Callas

Had she survived her self-created tragedies, Maria Callas would have turned 84 this month. Instead, the controversial soprano, many of whose operatic recordings remain unsurpassed, died in 1977 of "natural causes" -- translation: from a broken heart and overuse of sleeping pills and other drugs. Comment
Theater

New Norma, New Roméo

As with Broadway productions, sometimes operatic revivals are seemingly cursed with unshakable bad luck. Such was the case with Bellini's masterpiece "Norma" this season. James Jorden reported on the initial run, featuring Hasmik Papian, in the November 29 issue. The title role was taken over November 26 as scheduled by Maria Guleghina, fresh - if that is the word - from her spectacularly uneven run in the new "Macbeth," where the Russian soprano's huge format vocalism made for some visceral excitement, as well as much cringing. Comment
Music

Artists Lost to the Ages

As 2007 fades into memory, a vital exercise is to memorialize those figures lost in the past 12 months. What follows is ten jazz legends lost in 2007 - a small part of a larger list, all deserving of their own commemoration, and a woefully inadequate list of their accomplishments. Comment
Art

Glitter and Be Equal

Artist Alex Da Corte's current body of photographs and sculptural installation examines evidence of power dynamics in human relationships. His work deals with appearances and intimacy - the potency of what lies beneath appearances. His interest is in the soul rather than the surface of the work, the person, or the subject. Comment
Music

Lost in a Blind Spot

Directors such as Hong Sang-soo, Jia Zhang Ke, and Tsai Ming-liang can sell out 1,000-seat theaters at the New York Film Festival, but upon theatrical release, their films are lucky to last two weeks. The aesthetic of "festival cinema" - slow pacing, an austere tone, an avoidance of psychological explanations and conventional narrative - has yet to click with more general audiences, even in New York arthouses. Comment
Music

Stephen Greco's Reinvention

Stephen Greco has some big dancing shoes to fill. He works in the office where Marion Dienstag sat for a time, after she led Dance Theater Workshop into the new millennium with a brand new building and a fully loaded theater. Before her, David R. White, the kingmaker, reigned over these lands for a quarter century. Comment
Books

A Marvelous Party, and Then Some

Just as the infernal machinery of the Yuletide season was ramping up its materialistic drone, the classy house of Knopf came out with a large collection of Noel Coward's letters and selected diary entries which are as welcome as a hot rum toddy in days of bleak weather and forced cheer. Comment
Books

A Marvelous Party, and Then Some

Just as the infernal machinery of the Yuletide season was ramping up its materialistic drone, the classy house of Knopf came out with a large collection of Noel Coward's letters and selected diary entries which are as welcome as a hot rum toddy in days of bleak weather and forced cheer. Comment
Theater

Family Affair, Tawdry at Best

By: DAVID KENNERLEY Comment
Theater

No Business Like...

By: CHRISTOPHER BYRNE Comment
Theater

Family Affair, Tawdry at Best

By: DAVID KENNERLEY Comment
Theater

In The Noh: Wise Endora, Rosie, Madonna

In no particular order, the "Aggie Awards" are here presented for the best live performances of 2007. The awards are named for the divine Agnes Moorehead (1900-74), best known today for her campy "Endora" character on "Bewitched" and rumored lesbianism. But what should most be remembered - apart from her numerous distinguished stage performances - is that in "The Magnificent Ambersons," Moorehead gave one of cinema's greatest, realest performances, for which she won the New York Film Critics' 1942 Award. Comment
Theater

No Business Like...

In the idiosyncratic but appealing musical "The Glorious Ones," Lynn Ahrens (book and lyrics) and Stephen Flaherty (music) tell the backstage story of a 16th century troupe of Italian street players who are responsible for the establishment of Comedia dell'arte and the transformation of the theater. Under the direction of Flamino Scala, a flamboyant actor/manager, who it could be argued was the first to put his faith in typecasting, the improvisational troupe go from the streets to the court, back to the streets and are left pondering their future and relevancy as the culture - and the theater - changes around them. Comment
Theater

Family Affair, Tawdry at Best

"So, the message of this play is that women are whores and that's the way men like them?", asked my companion, looking drained and dumbfounded as we exited the Cort Theatre where a stunning revival of "The Homecoming" is now playing. Comment
Art

Man Tames Beast

By: CHRISTINE CALLAHAN Comments (1)
Art

After the Soirée

By: GREGORY MONTREUIL Comment
Theater

Timpani, the Hunter's Call

By: LORI ORTIZ | You may know the charismatic Isaac Mizrahi, but you may not know his sexy storytelling voice. He read "Peter & The Wolf" to a crowd of mesmerized children and adults at the Guggenheim's Peter B. Lewis Theater on December 17. Audience members were privy to an intimate encounter with the world-famous, out gay clothing designer. Comment
Books

Ex-Lovers and Other Strangers

By: DOUG IRELAND Comment
Art

After the Soirée

Approaching the new installation at David Zwirner, "Black Pussy" appears as the final work by Jason Rhoades, who died in 2006 at 41. The vestige of a series of soirées planned and executed by Rhoades, the mammoth installation is built around an empty stage. Never one to shy away from hot buttons issues, Rhoades carried out the "Black Pussy Soirée Cabaret Macramé" evenings with carefully composed guest lists and planted attendees. The guests were required to wear white and included art world luminaries as well as celebrities and local people. Comment
Art

Man Tames Beast

Man tames beast. Somewhere, out there, in a barren land. Who are they? Why do they have hyenas and monkeys on leashes? Are the animals being domesticated as pets or are they weapons or perhaps just curiosities? None of these questions are answered, only raised, in this striking exhibition, "The Hyena and Other Men." Comment
Art

Man Tames Beast

Man tames beast. Somewhere, out there, in a barren land. Who are they? Why do they have hyenas and monkeys on leashes? Are the animals being domesticated as pets or are they weapons or perhaps just curiosities? None of these questions are answered, only raised, in this striking exhibition, "The Hyena and Other Men." Comment
Film

The Preminger Touch

There is the man. A child of privilege, born in Vienna in either 1905 or '06, according to varying accounts, to a father retained as counsel by the Habsburg monarchs. The young artist turned by the muses from law school to apprenticeship with Max Reinhardt, then to film with "Die Grosse Liebe" (1931) and soon enough onstage in New York and on B detail at Fox in Hollywood, swinging freely between film and theater for years. Comment
Film

Keeping the Arthouse Open

In 2007, cinephilia meant spending a lot of time in mourning, thanks to the deaths of Michelangelo Antonioni, Ingmar Bergman, Ousmane Sembene, and Edward Yang. Obituary proclamations of Bergman's irrelevance were answered at length in the blogosphere, but even if the director's reputation has fallen since the '60s, he lived a long life and made a vast oeuvre. Yang died in his 50s and only got to direct seven films. His fate seems emblematic of the current state of art cinema. Comment
Film

Film Fest Honors Gays

This year the 36-year-old, internationally touring, New York City-based Dance on Camera Festival has spread its wings and swept into the boroughs. Expanded content brought opportunities for community-based programming. Comment
Film

Where There's Oil...

In the finest Hollywood tradition of coaxing movie magic from literary banality, writer-director Paul Thomas Anderson has taken Upton Sinclair's 1927 novel "Oil!", which studio heads and agents hadn't exactly been pining to produce, and made from it a work of sensory astonishment and rich moral ambiguities. Comment

The Preminger Touch

There is the man. A child of privilege, born in Vienna in either 1905 or '06, according to varying accounts, to a father retained as counsel by the Habsburg monarchs. The young artist turned by the muses from law school to apprenticeship with Max Reinhardt, then to film with "Die Grosse Liebe" (1931) and soon enough onstage in New York and on B detail at Fox in Hollywood, swinging freely between film and theater for years. Comment
Film

Keeping the Arthouse Open

In 2007, cinephilia meant spending a lot of time in mourning, thanks to the deaths of Michelangelo Antonioni, Ingmar Bergman, Ousmane Sembene, and Edward Yang. Obituary proclamations of Bergman's irrelevance were answered at length in the blogosphere, but even if the director's reputation has fallen since the '60s, he lived a long life and made a vast oeuvre. Yang died in his 50s and only got to direct seven films. His fate seems emblematic of the current state of art cinema. Comment
Music

Timpani, the Hunter's Call

You may know the charismatic Isaac Mizrahi, but you may not know his sexy storytelling voice. He read "Peter & The Wolf" to a crowd of mesmerized children and adults at the Guggenheim's Peter B. Lewis Theater on December 17. Audience members were privy to an intimate encounter with the world-famous, out gay clothing designer. Comment
Books

Ex-Lovers and Other Strangers

By: DOUG IRELAND Comment

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