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Activities Archives

August 18, 2006

Getting ready for combat

Here it comes, looming on the horizon of my life, either a portentous storm, a whirling of frantic activities, or a glorious foray into newness, the unexpected.

September 8, 2006

Dinner at Orchard Restaurant

AH, THE JOYS AND AGONY OF NEW YORK DINING, THE RIDICULOUS MYSTIQUE, THE FOL-DE-ROL OF THE FOODIE BRIGADE. ISN'T IT STRANGE THAT THERE IS HARDLY AN UNALLOYED, PERECT DINING EXPERIENCE? EITHER THE ROOM IS AN ARCHITECT'S TRIUMPH, BUT THE WAITE STAFF IS SNOOTY. THE FOOD IS TOO EXPENSIVE AND THEREFORE DISAPPOINTING, THE FOOD AND ROOM ARE FINE, BUT THE ROOM IS SO RAUCOUSLY NOISY THAT YOU CAN'T CONVERSE AND HAVE TO SHOUT, ADDING TO THE GENERAL CLAMOUR. OR YOU LIKE THE FOOD, BUT YOUR COMPANION DOESN'T.


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September 9, 2006

UNION SQUARE

SOMEONE TOLD ME THAT UNION SQUARE IN NEW YORK CITY WAS SO NAMED BECAUSE THIS SUBWAY STATION WAS THE FIRST INTERCHANGE BETWEEN THE TWO INDEPENDENT UNDERGROUND RAILWAYS. I THOUGHT THE NAME HAD TO DO WITH THE CIVIL WAR, OR TRADE UN IONISM. WELL!
AND THIS UPSURGING NEIGHBORHOOD IS GETTING AS CROWDED AS THE NEXUS OF 34TH ST. AND B'WAY. ONE CAN HARDLY WALK THERE IN COMFORT. NOW THERE IS LITTLE NECESSITY TO GO UPTOWN ANYMORE, UNLESS UPSCALE BUYING IS
THE MOTIVE.

September 10, 2006

THE WEEK THAT WILL BE

AH, YES. NOW IT BEGINS. THE FIRST DAY OF THE REST OF MY LIFE. BEYOND THE NIGGLING, PETTY RESPONSIBILITIES, THE PHONE CALLS, THE NECESSARY LITTLE CHORES, HOW TO ADORN THE WEEK WITH GOOD THINGS\, JOYOUS MOMENTS?
ACCORDING TO ACCEPTED PHILOSOPHY ONE IS TO DISPENSE LOVE, SHOW COMPASSION, SPREAD GOOD WILL, DISTRIBUTE LARGESSE. THIS SHOULD BE AN EASY TASK. ARE WE NOT TAUGHT THESE BEHAVIORS AND ATTITUDES BEGINNING
IN OUR EARLIEST DAYS?
HA! WELL, THAT'S THE WAY I AM. THE PARADIGM O CONDUCT. OH, I AM SUCH A JUICY PERFECTION. I CAN HARDLY BEAR TO BASK IN THE SCINTILLATING AURA OF MY SAINTLINESS. YOU WHO KNOW ME. DO YOU BELIEVE IT? HMMMMMM..........

September 11, 2006

GREAT DAY!

THE SUN WAS BRILLIANT, THE AIR COOL AND BRACING. ONE OF THOSE RARE DAYS THAT SEEM TO SUPPLY THAT EXTRA ENERGY THAT FILLS YOU WITH A JOY, A PASSION.
THERE IS A GUY I LIKE SOOO MUCH! HIS NAME IS JOSEPH ALBANES, R.N., AND HE IS THE NURSE LIASON FOR DR.SHASHA, MY RADIATION ONCOLOGIST. EVERYTIME I SEE HIM, NO MATTER WHAT IT'S ABOUT,(TODAY TO GET A NEW PRESCRIPTION)----JOE MAKES IT EASY, SIMPLE AND PLEASANT. HE IS ONE OF THOSE RARE "PEOPLE
PERSONS" WHO HAPPENS TO BE IN THE PERFECT PLACE FOR HIS TALENTS. AND

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September 19, 2006

DAILY PASSIONS

PERHAPS I DON'T WRITE THIS BLOG FOR ANYONE ELSE TO READ, JUST FOR MYSELF. OTHERWISE THERE IS NO JUSTIFICATION FOR THE CATALOGUE OF MY ACTIVITIES. I WANT, FOR SOME STRANGE REASON TO HAVE A RECORD OF ALL THE ODD BALL STUFF I DO. I'M SURE TO BE BORING, BUT HERE GOES THE CATALOGUE:
MY FIRST DRAMA WORKSHOP MEETING WAS ON THE 11TH. THEN ON THE 14TH WAS THE LONG ANTICIPATED DINNER PARTY AT TED GANNON'S APARTMENT IN THE UN PLAZA. ON THE 16TH LILLIAN AND I SAW "HEARTBREAK HOUSE" AT THE ROUNDABOUT AMERICAN AIRLINES THEATRE ON 42N D STREET. STRANGELY ENOUGH I FELT THAT PHIL BOSCO WAS NOT LOUD OR ENERGETIC ENOUGH FOR THE CAPTAIN ROLE. I SAT IN THE 3RD ROW CENTER AND HAD TROUBLE HEARING SOME OF THE DIALOGUE. WELL, THIS WAS THE FIRST PREVIEW AND I'M SURE THE SHOW WILL TIGHTEN UP AND IMPROVE MIGHTILY. THE PEOPLE ARE SO TALENTED.
MONDAY, THE 18TH, WAS THE FIRST DAY BACK AT THE NEW SCHOOL IRP. THE CLASS ON RICHARD WILBUR'S POETRY WAS VERY GOOD.
THEN IN THE EVENING WE SAW "THE APPLECART" BY GB SHAW AT THE PLAYER'S CLUB. I ENJOYED THIS PLAY IMMENSELY. SO MANY LAUGHS. BRIAN MURRAY WAS FABULOUS AS THE KING, AND MARION SELDES WONDERFUL.
WENT TO THE GYM TODAY, AND TOOK IT EASY AFTERWARD.
TOMPRROW IS MY FIRST CLASS ON THE DECLINE OF THE BRITISH EMPIRE AND THEN IN THE EVENING I'M GOING TO THE PHILHARMONIC TO HEAR MAHLER'S FOURTH SYMPHONY. THEN THURSDAY THERE IS THE DEAN'S BREAKFAST TO ATTEND, AND A CLASS IN 20TH CENTURY FRENCH PLAYS AND THURSDAY NIGHT A CHAMBER MUSIC CONCERT AT ALICE TULLY HALL. THAT IS IT FOR NOW, A VERY BARE LIST OF ACTIVITIES WITH LITTLE DESCRIPTION AND ABSOLUTELY NO LITERARY MERIT. JUST A SORT OF REMINDER FOR ME
I SHALL WRITE MORE COLORFULLY AND INTERESTINGLY(I HOPE) SOON.

September 20, 2006

ANOTHER BUSY DAY

THIS DAY BEGAN FOR ME WITH TH RECOMENCEMENT OF THE MEN'S LUNCH -BUNCH, AND IT WAS A GOOD MEETING. THE MATTERS DISCUSSED HAD TO DO WITH AGING, DEATH OF FRIENDS AND LOVED ONES AND COPING. SOUNDS A MITE DEPRESSING AND MORBID, EH,WHAT? BUT WE DO SEEM TO NEED TO DEAL WITH SUCH MATTERS, AND THE GENTLE AND SOMETIMES INSULTING JOSHING THAT GOES ON, SOMETIMES AIMED AT OUR GOOD-NATURED CHAIRMAN, FRED CUBA, BREAKS UP THE SERIOUSNESS. THIS IS PERHAPS ONE OF THE BEST ACTIVITIES OF THE IRP. ONE WOULD BE HARD PUT TO FIND SUCH A FINE GROUP OF MEN SUCH AS THE ONES IN THE LUNCH BUNCH.
THE NEXT THING WAS THE FIRST CLASS MEETING OF THE RISE OF THE BRITISH EMPIRE STUDY GROUP AND IT DIDN'T GO SO WELL, BUT I'M HOPING THE CLASS WILL IMPROVE. IF NOT.............I'M OUT OF THERE. I'M MUCH TOO OLD TO WASTE TIME. IF IT AIN'T FUN, I AIN'T DOIN' IT ----NO MORE OF THAT NONSENCE!
"THE NEXT THING" WAS THE CONCERT OF THE NYPHIL AT LINCOLN CENTER. I MUST
AVER THAT LORIN MAAZEL HAS PROBABLY THE BEST, CLEAREST STICK TECHNIQUE I'VE EVER SEEN. IT'S A MARVEL AND A JOY TO SEE. AND HIS INTERPRETATION ARE RIGHT ON THE MONEY. MY SEAT WAS IN THE SECOND TIER IN A SIDE BOX, BUT O.K.
NOT AS GOOD AS MY REGULAR SEASON SEAT, BUT I'VE SAT ALL OVER AVERY FISHER HALL. AND THE PRICE WAS RIGHT. I SAT WITH SHARON, ARNIE, AND DOLORES.
THE PROGRAM WAS THE OVERTURE TO OBERON OF VON WEBER, MOZART ARIAS, SUNG VERY BEAUTIFULLY BY HEIDI GRANT MURPHY, SOPRANO, AND THE GREAT MAHLER FOURTH SYMPHONY..................AND A FINE PERFORMANCE.
"THE NEXT THING"---WHEN I GOT HOME THERE WAS A CALL FROM RUTH EDGE, A SOPRANO TO WHOM I TAUGHT VOICE IN MY NEW JERSEY DAYS. THAT'S `13\14 YEARS AGO. I WILL CALL HER TOMORROW OR THE NEXT DAY.

ONE OF THESE DAYS, I'LL DO SOME GOOD, DESCRIPTIVE WRITING AND SURPRISE MYSELF AND ANY VICTIM WHO READS IT!!!

September 22, 2006

AIR LIKE WINE

YES, HOW THE HEART BOUNDS AND SINGS WHEN THE WEATHER IS AS IT WAS ON THURSDAY. FIRST, THE DEAN'S BREAKFAST--A"WELCOME BACK TO SCHOOL THING."
THESE SORTS OF GATHERINGS HAVE A SAMENESS ABOUT THEM:"DID YOU HAVE A NICE SUMMER? DID YOU TRAVEL? YOU'VE LOST WEIGHT!" FAMILIAR FACES. A FEW NEW ONES.
THE FIRST MEETING OF A CLASS I'M ATTENDING, 20TH CENTURY FRENCH PLAYS, LOOKS TO BE FINE. RENEE WEHRMANN, A VERY SMART FRENCH WOMAN WHO WAS IN MY IMPROVISATION CLASS, IS THE COORDINATOR. THE FIRST PLAY IS ANOUIHL'S ANTIGONE, WHICH I HAVE DIRECTED SEVERAL TIMES. THEN THERE IS CAMUS, BECKETT, ETC..
AFTER CLASS I HAD A GOOD LUNCH WITH MY FRIEND,LARRY, AT A MOROCCAN RESTAURANT, OUR TABLE OUTSIDE FROM WHICH VANTAGE POINT WE COULD OGLE THE PRETTY GIRLS AS THEY PASSED, MANY, IT SEEMED, PARTIALLY EN DESHABILLE.
BETTER THAN ANY DESSERT! WE THEN TRAMPED THE WEST VILLAGE A BIT, AND I WAS ABLE TO STOP AT MY "BEST KEPT SECRET,'' FLORENCE BUTCHER SHOP,
WHERE YOU CAN PURCHASE NEWPORT STEAKS, PRIME, FOR LESS THAN YOU MIGHT IMAGINE.
WE FOUND A WEIRD ANTIQUE MUSIC SHOP, SO CROWDED YOU HAD TO WALK SIDEWAYS TO ENTER, WHERE LARRY FOUND A MARTIN GUITAR-SIZED UKELELE
WITH A REPAIRED CRACK IN IT FOR ONLY $800.(HE DIDN'T BUY IT. HIS WIFE, JANE, WOULD HAVE KILLED HIM, HE SAID.
I REALLY TIRED MYSELF OUT ON THAT WALK, SO BEAT IT HOME BECAUSE I HAD TO BE AT ALICE TULLY HALL FOR THE NYCHAMBER MUSIC SOCIETY OPENING NIGHT.
LILLIAN IS NOT A FAN OF STRING QUARTETS OR CHAMBER MUSIC, BUT I KNOW SHE
WOULD HAVE ENJOYED THE VARIETY OF THE ECLECTIC MUSIC AND CHANGING ENSEMBLES....... THE VIVALDI, AND ESPECIALLY, THE DVORAK QUINTETS
WERE JUST BEAUTIFUL.
TODAY I WAS ABLE TO CALL VIVIAN GLICK - IN HOSPITAL FOR SURGERY, AND TO WISH HER WELL. HAPPY TO SAY SEE SEEMS FINE. VIVIAN AND HER HUSBAND, BOB, ARE AN EXTREMELY WITTY AND INTERESTING COUPLE WHO SIT NEXT TO ME AT ROUNDABOUT THEATRE.
I'M A LITTLE STIFF HERE AND THERE(NOT JUST MY STILTED PROSE STYLE) FROM
THE GYM TODAY. HERE I SHALL STOP AND REVIEW THIS ENTRY NOTING THE VACUOUS, VAIN AND VAPID QUALITY OF MY OUTPUT.
HEY, I JUST REALIZED WHAT THIS KIND OF WRITING REMINDS ME OF.............THOSE TERRIBLE MIMEOGRAPHED LETTERS PEOPLE USED TO SEND AT CHRISTMAS.DO THEY STILL DO THAT? I NEVER DID. BUT LOOK............. MIDDLE AMERICA JUST CAUGHT UP WITH ME!

October 4, 2006

BUSY TIME

ANYONED READING THIS-----FEEL FREE TO SKIP. THIS PART IS FOR ME. BELIEVE IT OR NOT, IF I DON'T KEEP A RECORD OF WHAT I'VE DONE, EVEN RECENTLY, I'LL FORGET THE DETAILS.
SATURDAY, LILLIAN AND I ATTENDED A MOST REMARKABLE EXHIBITION AT THE NEW YORK BOTANICAL GARDEN.
DALE CHIHULY, A WORLD RENOWNED ARTIST WHO CREATES SCULPTURE IN GLASS(AND WHO HAS EXHIBITED HIS WORKS WORLDWIDE) HAS TAKEN OVER THE CONSERVATORY AND OTHER BUILDINGS, WHERE ALMOST EVERYWHERE YOU LOOK THERE ARE BEAUTIFUL, COLORFUL, SURPRISING REPRESENTATIONAL OR ABSTRACT PIECES---CHANDELIERS, FLOATING GLOBES, GLASS BIRDS, SURPRISES EVRYWHERE....... AND I WENT RELUCTANTLY. GOD, WHAT I WOULD HAVE MISSED BECAUSE OF STUPID STUBBORNESS! I WILL NEVER FORGET THE FLOATING GLASS BALLOONS OR THE ROWBOATS FILLED WITH STRANGE BEAUTIFUL FISH, IBIS, FRUIT.(EXHIBIT RUNS TO OCTOBER 29TH.)
SUNDAY, ANOTHER GORGEOUS FALL DAY, WE WALKED UP ALONG THE HUDSON TO THE 79TH STREET BOAT BASIN RESTAURANT FOR LUNCH.

MONDAY, OCTOBER 2ND, WAS MY REGULAR SEASON TICKET NIGHT AT THE MET. THE
OPERA, MOZART'S IDOMENEO, I HAD NEVER SEEN BEFORE. IT'S "OPERA SERIA,"
A VERY SPECIFIC GENRE, YOUNG MOZART, STYLISTICALLY STATIC, BUT THE MOVEMENTS WERE SO WELL COREOGRAPHED AND THE SINGING SO GREAT THAT THE OPERA WAS QUITE EXCITING.
CAST:ROSCHMANN, JEPSON,MAKARINA, HEPPNER.

YESTERDAY, I WENT BACK TO THE BOX OFFICE TO EXCHANGE A TICKET AND ENDED UP WAITING IN THE "RUSH" LINE - ORCHESTRA SEAT FOR FAUST FOR TWENTY BUCKS! SO I SAW THE PREMIERE NIGHT'S PERFORMANCE. QUITE A SAVING OVER WHAT I PAY FOR GRAND TIER SEATING. NOT THE BEST SINGING BUT THE PRODUCTION HAD MANY OTHER FINE ASPECTS..........A BARGAIN FOR SURE.
CAST:VARGAS, ABDRAZAKOV, SVENSON.

October 10, 2006

LUDWIG et al

THIS PAST SUMMER I HEARD/SAW THE BOSTON SYMPHONY AT TANGLEWOOD CONDUCTED BY BERNARD HAITINK PLAYING THE EROICA. IT WAS VERY GOOD. THIS YEAR HAITINK HAS EMERGED AS A BEETHOVEN SPECIALIST.........OF COURSE HAITINK, 77 YEARS OLD, IS FAMOUS ALL OVER THE WORLD, HAVING BEEN THE CONDUCTOR OF THE CONCERTGEBOW AMONG OTHER ORCHESTRAS. HE AND THE LONDON PHILHARMONIC HAVE RECORDED ALL THE BEETHOVEN SYMPHONIES, AND NOW THIS GROUP IS AT AVERY FISHER HALL TONIGHT PLAYING THE 4TH AND SIXTH SYMPHONIES. THE SIXTH, THE PASTORAL, IS MORE.FAMILIAR TO MOST PEOPLE THAN THE FOURTH, BUT THIS IS A GOOD OPPORTUNITY TO HEAR IT PLAYED BY A SUPERB ORCHESTRA, LED BY A FINE CONDUCTOR..
OF COURSE, THE AUDIENCE, AS THEY USUALLY DO, GAVE A STANDING OVATION.
(I FIND THAT SO ANNOYING, ESPECIALLY WHEN THEY DO IT EVERY TIME. THEN THE STANDING OVATION LOSES ALL SIGNIFICANCE.)
SOMETIMES, WHEN I GO TO A BEETHOVEN CONCERT, THE SHEER GENIUS OF THIS TITAN OVERWHELMS ME. I TRY TO IMAGINE WHAT EFFECT THESE NEW, POWERFUL COMPOSITIONS MUST HAVE HAD ON THE AUDIENCES OF HIS TIME, THE GRANDEUR, THE UNRELENTING, GLORIOUS SOUNDS, THE PLAIN COURAGE IT TOOK TO WRITE THIS NEW MUSIC, THE NEW DIRECTIONS IN WHICH HE WAS TAKING MUSIC.
VIVA, LUDWIG!!!!


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October 13, 2006

DANCE TO THE MUSIC OF TIME

TODAY WAS ANOTHER BEAUTIFUL FALL DAY, A LITTLE COOL, BRACING, STIMULATING.
THIS FRIDAY WAS THE FIRST "FRIDAY'S AT ONE" LECTURE AT THE UNIVERSITY, AND ONE I HAD BEEN LOOKING FORWARD TO. NICHOLAS BIRNS, A PROFESSOR AT THE NEW SCHOOL GAVE A LECTURE ABOUT ANTHONY POWELL'S 12 NOVELS, TITLED "DANCE TO THE MUSIC OF TIME'' ALL WHICH I READ LAST YEAR AND ENJOYED
TREMENDOUSLY. SO THAT PART OF THE DAY EXCEEDED EXPECTATIONS. AFTER THE INEVITABLE, UNAVOIDABLE COFFEE HOUR LILLIAN AND I TOOK A LONG WALK IN THE WEST VILLAGE ENDING IN WASHINGTON SQUARE. AFTER A REST WE WENT TO MARIO BATTAGLIA'S "OTTO" AT FIFTH AVE AND NINTH STREET FOR MY FAVORITE THIN CRUST PIZZA AND SOME PROSECCO.
I WENT HOME, LILLIAN TO CASA ITALIANA TO SEE "AMARACORD," A FELLINI FILM ABOUT FASCISM-----RELATED TO AN IRP COURSE SHE'S TAKING.
WE'LL SEE EACH AT AN 80TH BIRTHDAY CELEBRATION TOMORROW.

October 18, 2006

SOME NEW, SOME OLD "DO'INS"

jUST SO I WON'T THINK I DID NOTHIN' THE PAST FEW DAYS, I'M SETTING THIS DOWN IN PRINT!
SUNDAY, ANOTHER LOVELY FALL DAY, I SPENT SOME TIME IN BRYAN T PARK--NEW YORK TIMES BOOK FAIR, MANY PEOPLE, BUT I WAS ABLE TO FIND A PLEASANT HIDE-A-WAY FOR READING, WHILE LILLIAN LOOKED, SHOPPED AROUND.
MONDAY WAS THE RICHARD WILBUR COURSE AT SCHOOL, AND THE MORE I READ HIM, THE BETTER HE GETS--A REALLY MARVELOUS ARTIST!
MONDAY EVENING WAS MY FIRST MEETING OF "SPEAK THE SPEECH" SEMINAR AT THE SHAKESPEARE SOCIETY...............KING HENRY THE FOURTH , WHICH I KNOW PRETTY WELL, AND IT WAS A GOOD OPPORTUNITY TO DO A LITTLE ACTING. YESTERDAY WAS LOAFING DAY. TODAY, THE 18TH, WAS THE MEN'S LUNCH BUNCH, A VERY GOOD MEETING, THEN THE BRITISH EMPIRE CLASS.
AND THAT'S ALL SHE WROTE! (WHAT A BORE, BUT A MEMO TO MYSELF.)

October 27, 2006

OCTOBER FOLLY

THE TITLE OF THIS ENTRY IS IN ITS ANTIQUE MEANING - MADNESS. WHEN ONE SCHEDULES TOO MANY ACTIVITIES THAT IS A FORM OF MADNESS. iT SEEMED THAT WAYTHIS WEEK, ALTHOUGH I SEEM TO REMEMBER DOING MORE, BEING BUSIER IN THE PAST, BUT ALAS, I WAS YOUNGER AND STRESS AND MY BODY'S ACHES, PAINS, AND STIFFNESS WERE NOT SO BOTHERSOME AS LATELY THEY HAVE BEEN.
MONDAY, I DID NOT TAKE THE RICHARD WILBUR POETRY CLASS........WAITING FOR THE PLUMBER, WHO DID NOT ARRIVE................SURPRISE!
BUT I DID GO TO THE SHAKESPEARE SOCIETY CLASS "SPEAK THE SPEECH" WHERE WE CONTINUED READING HENRY IV, PART 2. HAVING STUDIED THIS PLAY BEFORE, AND HAVING COACHED SOME SCENES FROM IT MADE A RE-VISIT VERY PLEASUREALBLE.
TUESDAY NIGHT I COULD HAVE GONE TO LINCOLN CENTER TO HEAR GERGIEV CONDUCT THE KIROV ORCHESTRA IN TWO SHOSTAKOVICH SYMPHONIES, BUT I DECIDED TO REST BECAUSE OF THE REST OF THE WEEK'S ACTIVIITIES.

WEDNESDAY, THE MEN''S LUNCHEON GROUP WAS UP TO 17 ATTENDEES, AND THE DISCUSSION WAS TOP DRAWER.THEN THE CLASS IN BRITISH EMPIRE'S RISE.
WEDNESDAY NIGHT I SAW RIGOLETTO AT THE MET. AS USUAL, GREAT SETS AND COSTUMES. THE BARITONE, JUAN PONS, I HAD SEEN BEFORE AT THE MET, BUT THE OTHER PRINCIPALS WERE NEW TO ME. THE TENOR WAS O.K. SERVICEABLE AND NOT UNPLEASANT, SANG ALL THE NOTES, BUT THERE WAS SOME LACK OF EXCITEMENT THERE. HOWEVER, I FELL IN LOVE WITH THE SOPRANO WHO SANG GILDA...................A LOVELY VOICE AND STAGE PRESENCE, A REAL BEAUTY WHOM THE AUDIENCE TOOK TO THEIR HEARTS. I WASN'T THE ONLY ONE SWEPT AWAY.

CAST:THE DUKE, JOSEPH CALLEJAH, RIGOLETTO, PONS, GILDA, EKATERINA SIURINA

THURSDAY NIGHT'S PHILHARMONIC CONCERT WAS WELL ATTENDED..............EMPPHASIS UPON HUNGARIAN COMPOSERS SANDWICHED IN BETWEEN BEETHOVEN PEICES. VERY CLEVER PROGRAMMING! A GOOD WAY TO KEEP THE AUDIENCE FROM LEAVING DURING THE BARTOK AND LIGETI PIECES BY KEEPING THE BEETHOVEN FIFTH AS THE PIECE DE RESISTANCE IN THE SECOND HALF OF THE CONCERT.
AS USUAL, LIGETI'S PALETTE NEEDS SOME GETTING USED TO, BUT IT IS QUITE INTERESTING MUSIC........................STANLEY KUBRICK USED LIGETI'S MUSIC IN MANY OF HIS FILMS.
PETER SERKIN, WHOM I HAVE HEARD AT LEAST FIVE TIMES IS A GREAT FAN OF THE SO CALLED "MODERN" COMPOSERS, ALTHOUGH I'VE HEARD HIM DO ALL PERIODS OF MUSIC. WELL, HE PLAYED THE HELL OUT OF THE BARTOK CONCERTO, ECHOING THE PERCUSSION SECTION OF THE ORCHESTRA......THE PIANO IS, AFTER ALL, A PERCUSSION INSTRUMENT. BUT THE BARTOK CONCERTO IS SO DIFFICULT TO PLAY!
IT WAS GOOD TO HEAR THE B EETHOVEN FIFTH PLAYED AGAIN BY THIS ORCHESTRA. I ALWAYS SEEM TO HEAR SOMETHING NEW. PEHAPS A COUNTER MELODY THAT I NEWLY DISCOVERED.
THE CONDUCTOR, WHOM I HEARD LAST YEAR AND LIKED VERY MUCH, JONATHAN
NOTT, IS WELL LIKED BY THE ORCHSTRA, ONE COULD SENSE, AND THE PUBLIC RESPONDS WELL TO HIS YOUTH AND GOOD LOOKS. HIS BATON TECHNIQUE IS EASY TO READ, ALSO. PERHAPS HE WILL BE ON "THE SHORT LIST" SOME DAY FOR THE PHILHARMONIC JOB!

PROGRAM: BEETHOVEN-OVERTURE TO KONEG STEPHAN
LIGETI -LONTANO, FOR LARGE ORCHESTRA
BARTOK- PIANO CONDERTO N O.1 (PETER SERKIN)
BEETHOVEN- SYMPHONY NO.5 IN C minor

SO TODAY TIRED AND RESTING.

December 4, 2006

PICK-UP AGAIN

THIS IS MY RETURN. IT'S BEEN SEVERAL WEEKS SINCE I MADE AN ENTRY IN THIS BLOG. MAY I MAKE A DEMAND OF ANYONE WHO READS THIS, NO MATTER HIS OR HER AGE? PLEASE DO NOT CLIMB UP ON A KITCHEN CHAIR OR ON AN UNSTEADY LADDER.......OR LIKE ME, YOU MAY WIND UP WITH BROKEN RIBS, TWISTED KNEE AND ALL THE PAINS THAT ACCOMPANY SUCH AN ACCIDENT. SO, I MISSED A NUMBER OF CLASSES, AND SOME CONCERTS. WHAT WITH MY INJURIES AND MY OTHER PHYSICAL PROBLEMS, I HAVE APOINTMENTS WITH FOUR DOCTORS NEXT WEEK.

THURSDAY, NOV. 30TH, WAS THE FIRST DAY I WAS ABLE TO GO OUT, AND
I DID GET TO SEE A NEW YORK PHILHARMONIC CONCERT, ONE THAT I HAD BEEN LOOKING FORWARD TO FOR A LONG TIME, AND IT WAS MARVELOUS, ONE OF THE BEST I HAVE SEEN. MY ORCHESTRA SEAT(NOT MY USUAL ONE,)WAS EXCELLENT. I REALLY WAS "TRANSPORTED."

THE PROGRAM:

MOZART - PIANO CONCERTO IN A MAJOR - LEON FLEISHER
HINDEMUTH - PIANO MUSIC WITH ORCHESTRA OP.29 - LEON FLEISHER
ROUSSEL - BACCHUS ET AREIEL SUITE NO. 2

R. STRAUSS - FINAL SCENE FROM SALOME - NANCY GUSTAFSON

THIS WAS ONE BEAUTIFULLY PLAYED AND WELL PROGRAMMED CONCERT!
COULDN'T HAVE BEEN BETTER.

THEN ON FRIDAY, DECEMBER 1. I HAD A GREAT TIME AT THE ROUNDABOUT THEATRE
FOR THE MUSICAL, "THE APPLE TREE" WITH KRISTEN CHENOWETH. LILLIAN AND I HAD A GREAT TIME. I FELT AS IF THIS SHOW, TOO, WAS ONE OF THE BEST REVIVALS OF A FAMOUS B'WAY SHOW THAT I HAD EVER SEEN. LUCKY ME!

THIS BLOG WRITING ENDEAVOR WAS STARTED BECAUSE I WANTED TO KEEP A RECORD OF WHAT I DO IN NEW YORK, BUT MY DEAR JENNIFER, DAUGHTER NUMBER
THREE SUGGESTED, RIGHTLY, THAT I NEVER MENTION MY FAMILY OR TELL ANY PERSONAL STUFF, AND SHE IS CORRECT BEACAUSE, AS I SAID I STARTED THIS AS A KIND OF MEMORANDUM. BUT I WILL TRY TO INCLUDE A DIFFERENT SORT LOF WRITING IN FUTURE.

January 31, 2007

A MISSED BLOG MONTH

I RECENTLY SAW TWO GOOD GB SHAW READINGS AT THE PLAYERS' CLUB, THE PHILANDERER AND CANDIDA(THE BETTER OF THE TWO.)
"SUDDENLY LAST SUMMER" AT THE ROUNDABOUT WITH BLYTHE DANNER AND CARLA GUGINO(GORGEOUS!) WAS A GOOD PLAY- TENNESSEE WILLIAMS DONCHA' KNOW.

AT THE MET CAVALLERIA AND PAGLIACCI WHERE LICITRA PLAYED BOTH TENOR ROLES AND WAS EXCELLENT. REMINDS ME OF WHEN I DID THE SAME THING IN IL TRITTRICO, RINUCCIO IN SCHICHI AND LUIGI IN TABARRO.

AT CARNEGIE THE PITTSBURGH SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA -SIR ANDREW DAVIS-
BEETHOVEN-CORIOLANUS OVERTURE
GUBAIDULINA- FEAST DURING A PLAGUE (NY PREMIERE)
BRAHMS-VIOLIN CONCERTO-JOSHUA BELL
STRAUSS-TILL EULENSPIEGELS LUSTIGE STREICHE
THEN NEXT AT CARNEGIE:
BACH'S ST MATTHEW PASSION - ORCHESTRA OPF ST LUKE'S, HELMUTH RILLING,
CONDUCTOR

AT THE PHILHARMONIC:- DAVID ROBERTSON, CONDUCTOR:
DEBUSSY - LE MARTYRE DE SAINTE SEBASTIEN
KAIJA SAARIAHO - ADRIANA SONGS FOR MEZZO & ORCHESTRA (PATRICIA BARDON)
SIBELIUS- NIGHT RIDE AND SUNRISE
DEBUSSY - LE MER
THEN AT THE PHILHARMONIC: CARLO MUTI(THE GREATEST!)
MARTUCCI- PIANO CONCERTO NO.2 IN B-FLAT MINOR
VERDI-BALLET MUSIC FRFOM MACBETH
RESPIGHI - FESTE ROMANE
(AS EXPECTED TRIUMPHANT, GORGEOUS

I KNOW I LEFT SOME ACTIVITIES OUT. BUT IT SERVES ME RIGHT FOR
PROCRASTIN ATION

February 23, 2007

MORE CULTURE

THIS IS THE BLOG THAT IS NOT A BLOG BUT MERELY A LIST OF MY ACTIVITIES SO THAT I WILL HAVE SOME RECORD OF WHAT I DO HERE IN NEW YORK CITY. PERHAPS
A MIRACLE WILL OCCUR AND THIS BORING RECITAL WILL CHANGE INTO SOME SORT OF LITERARY, POLEMICAL SPOT LIKE A "BLOG" SHOULD BE. BUT FOR NOW IT IS WHAT IT IS. SO...................

MONDAY FEBRUARY 5TH I WAS PRIVILEDGED TO SEE AT THE MET, ANNA NETREBKO, THAT BEAUTIFUL AND FINE ARTIST, SING ELVIRA IN "PURITANI." WONDERFUL!

SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 10TH TOGETHER WITH MY SON, STEPHEN, AT THE MET WE SAW(AND WERE THRILLED TO SEE "JENUFA" WITH THE MAGNIFICENT FINNISH SOPRANO, KARITA MATTILA. THIS WAS ONE OF THE FINEST PRODUCTIONS I HAVE SEEN AT THE MET.........IN OUR GREAT SEATS, FIRST ROW, GRAND CIRCLE!

LAST NIGHT, FEBRUARY 22, WAS MY REGULAR SERIES NIGHT AT THE PHILHARMONIC.
I WASN'T THRILLED AT THE PROSPECT, BUT I WAS WRONG. THE CONCERT WAS FABULOUS, SOMETHING NOT TO BE MISSED.

MAAZEL CONDUCTED THE ORCHESTRA IN THREE WORKS WITH WHICH I WAS NOT FAMILIAR:
MOZART CONCERTO IN C MAJOR FOR FLUTE AND HARP...SO LIGHT AND GORGEOUS.

SCHUMANN CONCERTSTUCK IN F MAJOR FOR FOUR HORNS AND ORCHESTRA AND OF COURSE ONE CANNOT FIND A BETTER BRASS SECTION THAN IS IN THAT ORCHESTRA.

MELINDA WAGNER CONCERTO FOR TROMBONE AND ORCH. NEW COMMISSION-WORLD PREMIERE.

GERSHWIN-AN AMERICAN IN PARIS!!!!!!!!!!!!!

OH,YES,I WAS LISTED IN THE PROGRAMME AS PATRON.

MONDAY, FEBRUARY 12 I SAW A PRODUCTION GIVEN BY THE SHAKESPEARE SOCIETY(OF WHICH I AM A MEMBER) CALLED "HISTORY GIRLS" - READINGS OF THE CHARACTERS, CONSTANCE, ELIZABETH, & MARGARET STARRING KATHLEEN CHALFONT AND MARIAN SELDES. GREAT LADIES OF THE AMERICAN THEATRE' WHO DID A WONDERFUL JOB.

September 16, 2010

Reentry

After not having written for over four years, after not having sat down, thought out, and decided subject matter for my blog, here I am again.
What shall I write about? To whom shall my musings be addressed? Who in God's name would be interested in my petty, very personal activities and thoughts? I guess I'm the only one!

Daily enlightenment-Monday, September 13.

This feeling of excitement, or perhaps fear that I have about my teaching of improvisation may perhaps be a very good thing. I should really bask in this feeling and not view it as frightening or damaging my soul. After all one of the things I enjoy the most is performing. Teaching is the ultimate performance vehicle because the teacher has a trapped audience. This is a very egocentric activity. There's no question about it.

I sincerely hope that my present deep interest in meditation and Buddhism is not a passing fancy or fad. I certainly am having a great feeling of relaxation and peace from the readings I've been doing.

I hope to keep a daily journal of my feelings and experiences in attempting to merge my spiritual life with my teaching activities.

The Alzheimer's class went very well. The fact that big Al was not there had very little to do with the outcome. It was a lot of joy and accomplishment in the class which was a result of the fact that I really did nothing more than supply situations for improvisation. It looks as if the easiest way for me is simply to bring in ideas for improvising and let them do it. I had just better forget any therapeutic experimentation. There was applause, and a lot of praise from the rest of the staff. A good time was had by all.

I told Lillian that I would not be available next Saturday because of an improvisation workshop. She seemed all right about that because she has other stuff to do also next weekend.

I know this completely out of context but it's something for me to think about." Thinking is not awakened understanding. Awakened understanding is quicker than lightning where there is reasoning there is failure."

I am looking forward to the Stein Tuesday class. I don't have to much preparation for this. I'm just going to reiterate the ideas I used yesterday with the Alzheimer's group. Also I'll give these people a chance to do some of their scenes and monologues. It looks as if there will be several new people there. What a great opportunity it is for these people in my class to get free teaching of acting for nothing. At least I'm getting paid for my services.

Tuesday Sept 14th, 10

Stein went very well. Several absences. Renee very funny in skit in operating theatre.
New actor guy, terrifically good. Requests scene work.......also from Menage w/Susan
Engels.

Got phone call from Holly..........will see! Harbour trip had some plusses. Especially the view of New York Harbor and after sunset when all the city lights begin to go on. Ate a very noisy tapas restaurant at the Seaport. Not bad, decor nice, but noisy as it could be. Probably the noisiest restaurant I ever ate in.

Wednesday, September 15.

Went to school, dropped off papers to be xeroxed. Talked with MM and said much too much about my relationship with LS. Stepped right off the pathway. It seems as if there is continual struggle to maintain one's progress in meditation. I found the men's luncheon group to be extremely boring today, but it was nice to meet with Harry and my dear friend, Pete. At the present time I have a temptation not to go back to the men's group on Wednesdays. But we'll see how I feel. (Went to mFood Emp on Ave 6.

As of 8:34 PM today I have not heard from Holly again. Not to worry - the situation of my attending the workshop on Saturday will work out one way or the other.

Took a walk with BGM to the drugstore. She wasn't as good at it as she was in our walk yesterday.

I should not be concerned about my creative dramatics workshop on Friday. However the kind of person I am, I'm always worried. So I think I will try and draft a lesson plan that will satisfy me about what I plan to do. I believe that there are no really experienced improvisation folks in the class so so I can start them all off on a very basic level.

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