Wilson says he did not feel he was Black by nature. He had to learn to be Black, and his education, which began at the age of 20, with the discovery of Bessie Smith and the Blues, is the stuff he transformed with ever growing skill into the tissue of his work.
Of course some restrictions would be needed to keep them open, starting with the usual 25 percent capacity, six-foot distance, and masking requirements. But the fact that some institutions can’t operate safely in a pandemic shouldn’t doom those that can.
Made with determination and imagination against the most inimical conditions imaginable, it may come to be seen as one of the harbingers of a new era performance, when all forms of delivery to an audience are seen as equally valid.
ArtsFund's Michael Greer, Seattle Theatre Group's Josh Labelle and Post Alley editor Douglas McLennan talk about the state of Seattle's arts community seven months into the COVID lockdown.
In some ways, 2&U is a laboratory for cities of the future. It could show us how to activate the all-important ground floor after e-commerce and now the pandemic have dealt blows to downtown retail.
The Seattle Repertory Theater (as the name recalls) once deployed a repertory method. It commenced in 1963, right after the Seattle World's Fair, when the repertory idea was the hot idea for regional, non-commercial theater.
In this spare, intense revival from the Opera am Rhein in Düssedorf, it fits our current national mood like an Iron Maiden.
All philanthropic support is not equal. And the pandemic lockdown demonstrates different approaches.
Holl’s building remains the most important work of art in the collection of Bellevue Art Museum
Surprise: A new recording of JS Bach's Goldberg Variations shows Lang Lang in a new light.
It’s likely that many reading this piece were not among the audiences that made Stop Making Sense on of the most successful concert films of all time. I can only hope that they take advantage of the opportunity while it lasts.
Seattle will go from being an over-achiever in the arts (measured by our population) to something much closer to other mid-sized cities such as Phoenix, San Diego, Portland, and Milwaukee. Or not.
The orchestra opens its season with a socially-distanced performance. "Imagination is not the word I would use in describing the show, which put competence on view but nothing more. No surprise, no delight, no flair, no depth of feeling."
In the past you could go out for six weeks at a time. But now maybe you'll go out and work two or three jobs and you'll try to lump them together. But it's nothing to go to Florida for a one-nighter compared to the past. Really why I keep doing gigs now is because I think it's important to keep this music alive. It's part of the American heritage and it's part of history.
An interesting innovation in Atlanta is to create a new kind of local opera company, built around notable singers who live in Atlanta. This kind of repertory company has the flexibility to put on all kinds of imaginative performances.
"Theatres need to stop worrying about how they can reopen in a reduced form, and look out for other models of production in different spaces and to different audiences."
It is true that when we take them down, all those people whose sole method of learning history is walking past statues of “great” men, looking up and then looking down again if there’s enough time on the tour schedule to read an inscription, will have to find another way of learning history.
Seattle got a little of this regional spirit, but never drank deeply. Our cultural institutions are instead quite derivative, which is more comforting for audiences and donors. Take away the New York dominance, however, and you might have more vitality at the regional level.
Deprived of their usual performance venues, artists have turned to the internet to make and disseminate their art. The art is evolving quickly
“Normally getting a project of this size done in the city of Seattle would have required months of bureaucracy, red tape, and writing grants, and trying to find the money, all of which can kill a creative vibe or project real quick.”
How to Train Your Dragon doesn't exactly live up to my memory of it. It far surpasses recollection, shrugging itself out of the familiar skin of animated fantasy action-movie and emerging as a noble allegory.
For more than three decades, Seattle has been earnestly shaping policy and procedure to get better downtown buildings, and fend off the worst. What have we got to show for it? Rainier Square Tower.
The show is a reminder of the power of still photos to explore and explain, especially events that blend history with natural phenomena. Much of the exhibit consists of photo essays reminiscent of extinct magazines like Life.
At REEL Grrls, all the hard drives we used to store our short films we made were named after female directors. By fate, I got “The Lynn Shelton” hard drive. I admired Lynn because she had the courage to take a leap of faith, shift gears, and begin a second life as a filmmaker.
Perhaps, they said, they might open again in the fall of 2021 in a new but still undetermined location. Either way, my heart is broken. Re-bar was like another home to me in a rapidly changing city that offers fewer and fewer places where it is possible to hold on to some of what once was.
"I cannot see these works now, nor look south from a ferry crossing, without recalling the landscape-shaping power of a melting glacier – in the Vashon case a massive river of receding ice that gave us the islands and waters of the Sound. I see Julie’s striking works as marvelous catalysts calling attention to larger surroundings, to the colossal reach of time."
Two marvelous leadership opportunities. Two chances to make a historic difference. Bad as the arts needs money right now, leadership is even more important.
With an alacrity I hadn’t anticipated, today’s “Mad Men” are daily pushing out new ads tied to life as we now know it. This pandemic pivot in sales pitches highlights that we still have a robust creative sector hard at work to persuade us to buy things (whether we need them is a separate question).
You can see this as nothing but loss. Or perhaps some of our most intractable debates are now suddenly shaken free of their old moorings.
Biking around Seattle to re-engage a city that I had not lived in for 21 years, I was intrigued and positively impressed with the quality of speculative housing projects. They exhibit rich texture and articulation, with colors often vivid by historical standards.