December 19, 2012 |
Caruso, Bjorling, Pavarotti, Carreras, Domingo, Alagna, Kaufmann, Florez and (Eric) Cartman. One of these things is not like the other, 'tis true, but there is one way in which they are kind of the same: They have all recorded versions of "O Holy Night. " In fact it seems there is hardly a singer who hasn't. Most Christmas music is meant for group singing, so, unless you are a soprano singing the descant, Christmas caroling doesn't require a lot of vocal skill. "O Holy Night," on the other hand, written in 1847 by French composer Adolphe Adam as a setting of the poem "Minuit, chrétiens," offers the irresistible combination of operatic drama and technical difficulty.
September 7, 2012 |
"I'm about to do it for the first time," chirps goofy Mormon missionary Elder Cunningham. "And I'm gonna do it with a girl!" The young man in a white shirt and tie isn't singing about a lusty encounter, but a holy rite of passage in "Baptize Me," a bubbly show tune in the Broadway phenomenon "The Book of Mormon. " "I just died during that part," said Joanna Brooks, author of "The Book of Mormon Girl: Stories From an American Faith," recalling the first time she heard the cast album.
October 23, 2013 |
Soprano Audra McDonald is clearing out junk - in more ways than one. When reached by phone at her home outside New York City, the five-time Tony-winning actress and two-time Grammy-wining singer was awaiting a call from "the 1-800 junk guy," who would soon be hauling away the fruits of her fall cleaning. McDonald's newest album, the 12-song disc "Go Back Home," is also a clearing of sorts. It's the Broadway star's first solo album in seven years, and it addresses major life shifts that unfolded during that time, including the death of her father in a plane crash in 2007.
July 24, 2013 |
Jeffrey Deitch has made it official: He'll be stepping down after a stormy three years as director of L.A.'s Museum of Contemporary Art. The MOCA board said it had launched a search for his successor. Deitch told the board of his decision to leave at its meeting Wednesday, according to a MOCA statement. "He will stay on to ensure a smooth transition and the successful completion" of a campaign begun in March to boost MOCA's endowment to $100 million, the statement said. The statement said the campaign is "expected to close this fall.
October 27, 2013 |
NEW YORK - Wielding silence as deftly as he harnessed speech, British playwright Harold Pinter wrote plays that have the precision of musical scores. Much of the joy in encountering these extravagantly minimalist works in performance is noticing where the stresses have been placed and interpretive liberties taken. "Betrayal," first produced in London in 1978, is the Pinter play that has lately been drawing the starriest interpreters. In Ian Rickson's 2011 West End revival, Kristin Scott Thomas was like an icy cinder, coolly burning her way to the heart of this drama that lays bare the gamesmanship of marital infidelity.
May 28, 2013 |
"James Turrell: A Retrospective" is a bit like a dinner party at which the guest of honor is absent. Family members and friends are there, plus lots of conversation about the one who's missing. But the primary impetus for the get-together couldn't make it. The missing guest, of course, is Roden Crater - the much written-about volcano in the Northern Arizona desert that the artist has been converting into an elaborate, celestial observatory since he located the dramatic site more than 40 years ago. The exhibition at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art includes extensive documentation of the ongoing project, in the form of models, drawings, plans, photographs and video.