Gone are the days when a taste for classical music had to be backed by a six-figure salary, an old-money social circle, and season tickets to the Metropolitan Opera House. Today’s culture vultures consume widely, albeit not indiscriminately, and while you might not put Beethoven at the top of your pump-up mix, we know you’ve all grooved out to Hungarian Dance No. 5 and wish you played the cello every now and then. With indie idols like Radiohead and Sufjan Stevens playing shows accompanied by orchestras, genres have never been more permeable; but the classical-light instrumentals that cameo in the pop tracks we love are only palate teasers. If you like what you’ve heard so far and want to explore where it all came from, enjoy our four-course primer on classical music, after the jump. … Read More
He’s one of the most influential composers of the late 20th century, and yet how much do we really know about Philip Glass, the man? We’d say that it’s pretty minimal (har har). Apparently, that’s all about to change thanks to a deal that Glass has made with W.W. Norton & Company to write a… Read More
1. This sounds promising: Fox Searchlight has greenlit the first film by Jonathan Dayton and Valerie Faris since their 2006 Oscar-winner Little Miss Sunshine. He Loves Me, which will reunite the filmmaking team with Paul Dano, also stars his girlfriend, Zoe Kazan, who wrote the script. [via Deadline]
2. Battlestar Galactica star Edward… Read More
Last Friday, a mix of hipsters, soccer moms, and high school students could be seen entering Carnegie Hall to attend the 20th annual Tibet House Benefit Concert. Curated by Philip Glass, Tibet House shows have a reputation of bringing diverse, uber-talented, politically-conscious musicians together to raise money and awareness for the plight of the Tibetan… Read More
In the Painter’s Studio, a collection of interviews by artist Joe Fig, explores the practice of 24 contemporary painters by delving into their quotidian habits and customs. Beyond some fascinating insight into the head space behind the easel, we’ve also gleaned a few tidbits that would make for interesting trivia. To wit, Will Cotton only uses six colors of paint on his canvases — white, “a really cold” red, yellow, orange, blue, and sometimes a little green in place of black. Composer Philip Glass was Richard Serra’s only paid assistant in the early days after Yale. Eric Fischl only works on gigantic easels; his partner April Gornik isn’t that kind of artist who sloshes paint on the floor. And quite a few of our favorite contemporary painters never, ever worked as someone else’s assistant. After the jump, we have a pictorial preview of the book plus some questionnaire sound… Read More
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The Big Ears folks deserve massive credit for kicking off one of the more fantastically nerdy avant-music droolfests we’ve seen smack in the middle of an economic septic tank. Over three days, Knoxville, Tenn. found itself in the odd company of several hundred well-trained ears for a series of improv collaborations, tightly composed modern-classical performances, musical theater renditions, and dance parties. The weather was lovely, the ten-hour drive sucked, and Southern hospitality was no joke.
Not widely known in life, musician Arthur Russell epitomized much of NYC’s downtown scene in the late-’70s and ’80s by introducing disco to the avant-garde. Little footage remains of him, but the just-released DVD, Wild Combination: A Portrait of Arthur Russell, trains a sympathetic spotlight on this underappreciated innovator.
Far from a conventional… Read More