November 12, 2011 |
"The Song of Lunch," which airs Sunday as part of PBS' "Masterpiece Contemporary" series, is something you don't see every day, not even in bardic old England, whence it comes, and where a 47-minute TV drama using a narrative poem for a screenplay would seem somewhat more likely than it would here. Christopher Reid is the poet whose 2009 book is the source of all the words spoken here, in order, nearly all of them by the wonderful Alan Rickman, and nearly all the rest of them by the equally wonderful Emma Thompson, two actors whose many other accomplishments may be obscured in far posterity by their having appeared in "Harry Potter" movies.
September 30, 2013 |
The good news: According to a new report from the National Endowment for the Arts, more than half of American adults read books for pleasure in 2012. The bad news is that the percentage of adults reading works of literature -- in the NEA's definition, novels, short stories, poetry or plays -- has declined since 2008, returning to 2002 lows. Fifty-seven percent of American adults read one or more books not required for work or school in 2012 -- that's 128 million readers. Some other interesting findings: More women (64%)
May 19, 1991
After reading William Stiles' curmudgeonly letter on April 21 regarding the Home Depot's service, I recommend he shop at similar stores to fully appreciate what a pleasure it is to shop at the Home Depot. I shop at the one in Van Nuys. I find the staff friendly, courteous, helpful and knowledgeable. If it is not their department, or they don't know the answer, they'll find someone who knows, then help you load your car or truck if you need it. My only complaint is that there is not a Home Depot closer to Santa Monica.
March 3, 1990
Frequently I find (Joseph Bell's) columns to be the most satisfactory in our entire Orange County Times. Considering that I do check most of the editorial and opinion pieces quite carefully I intend this to be a sincere compliment to (Bell). (The Feb. 10) column on our soft-spoken congressman (Rep. Robert K. Dornan) brought me great pleasure. You have a talent for stating facts gently yet forcefully. The column after your visit to Jimmy Carter's church was another that remains in my memory as well as my collection.
November 30, 2006 |
PART mad Stravinsky, part mad Purcell, part mad Handel, Gerald Barry's "The Triumph of Beauty and Deceit" is a zany, outlandish and, of course, thoroughly batty 55-minute Irish opera. It also was a triumph of Pleasure, Truth and Time (its other three characters) in its American premiere Tuesday night at the Walt Disney Concert Hall. "Beauty and Deceit" was presented in concert form by the Los Angeles Philharmonic New Music Group in its Green Umbrella series.
November 12, 2004 |
Neil LaBute is noted for his sardonic, sometimes shockingly frank films ("In the Company of Men," in which two guys torment a deaf woman; "Your Friends and Neighbors," which exposes the sex lives of three intermingled couples) and stage plays ("The Mercy Seat," in which a man who was supposed to be in the World Trade Center on Sept. 11 uses the attack as an excuse to linger with his mistress, and "Bash," three one-acts about ordinary people who happen to be killers).