I’ve got a few goodies for those of you who are missing out on all the way cool stuff I do and see every day. Most of you, I know. But hey, that’s why I’m here!
The New York Times did a whole section on the history of Times Square, which just turned 100 in April. I know this one is way old, but it’s good. And like the Times, I like to come to the story way behind the curve but give it the full treatment. There’s a cool slideshow narrated by James Traub. A Day in the Life is surprisingly fascinating: “And what of the sights? ‘We did see the Eiffel Tower,’ says Julie Pasket. She meant the Statue of Liberty, but the confusion is understandable. All those French structures look alike.” Even better is a comment by Elaine Swann, 85, in Their Times Square who says, “The idiot tourists come in droves. I want to kill them when I’m trying to get across the street.” I know, Elaine. I know.
Next up, Monday was the premiere event for Meme, a new “music, art and mixed media” organization. Off to a bit of a rocky start with a 25 minute atonal clarinet/laptop duet, the evening turned out nicely, thanks in part to the handsome and funny host. The second piece, another atonal clarinet/laptop duet, was quite a bit better than the first, mostly because it was quite a bit shorter. This time, they played in front of a large, digital projection of a screensaver, which eventually dissolved to reveal soft-core porn. So that was pretty cool, I guess. Everything after that managed to be relatively innovative and engaging. A guy jamming on his electric cello, Kamala singing a Mozart opera thing into a webcam and a fun music video/sex documentary. there was plenty more after that, but I had to leave around 12:45 am to go somewhere even more fabulous. Not to go to sleep or anything like that.
Wednesday was more mainstream, but no less fun. Metropolitain Opera in the Park on the Great Lawn. One of my favorite summer events, almost up there with the (practically identical) Philharmonic in the Park. An unusually large crowd turned out for Madama Butterfly. I didn’t really follow the story, since it was in French or something. But the wine was good…or at least, there was a lot of it.
Keep an eye out for the Philharmonic as well as Bryant Park Movie Night every Monday this summer. See you out there.