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Found 10 results

  1. MOMA is one of the finest modern-art museums in the world, accommodating 2.8-million visitors in 2016, which was #13 in the world that year. In Midtown, it houses such masterpieces as "The Bather" by Paul Cezanne, "The Starry Night" by Vincent Van Gogh, "The Dance (1)" by Henri Matisse, "The Dream" by Henri Rousseau, and many, many more.
  2. Vera Miles is perhaps most noted for working with Alfred Hitchcock; with me, it's her role in "The Man who Shot Liberty Valance." Vera Miles on donrockwell.com
  3. I will confess--I have always been infatuated with Audrey Hepburn. The pixie cut, the cigarette pants, those eyes! I grew up wanting to be her, and now, in my 50s, I still emulate her gamine fashion style. I first became smitten with her when I saw her Oscar-winning performance in the 1953 romantic comedy, "Roman Holiday." She was just 24 when she landed the role of Ann, a princess who sneaks away from her royal duties for a day of fun in Rome with Gregory Peck. She went on to receive five Oscar nominations throughout her career, but this was her only win. She won a Tony award that same year for Best Lead Actress in a Play for her performance in Ondine. She remains one of the few people who have won Academy, Tony, Emmy and Grammy Awards. Since I was a young girl, "Roman Holiday" has been one of my favorite films. It won three Academy Awards: best actress, costume design and screenwriting. I watched it again this week, and I still love it. It isn't the most complicated story. There aren't any special effects. But the chemistry between Peck and Hepburn is compelling, and the shots of Rome are delightful. The thing that makes this film a classic--the standard by which romantic comedies are judged, and often found lacking--is Audrey Hepburn. She isn't the most beautiful film actress of her era, nor is she the most talented. But she is graceful, charming and beguiling. She has that "it" factor that makes it impossible to take your eyes off of her when she is on the screen. She radiates loveliness, kindness and approachability. I have never been one to follow celebrities. When she died in 1993, I bought a copy of the commemorative People Magazine about her. I felt like the world lost a true icon, a woman with a spirit and style that inspires people to this day. I enjoyed her performances in "Sabrina," "Charade," and "Wait Until Dark." I am not a "Breakfast at Tiffany's" fan, although that role is one that established her as one of the world's top fashion icons. Born in Brussels, she lived in German-occupied territory during the second World War. She later became a ballet dancer, a model and an actress. Perhaps because of the adversity she faced as a child, Hepburn became an advocate for children in her later years, devoting much of her time to UNICEF.
  4. Given that I've seen one film eligible, and know virtually nothing, would people please chime in and discuss the awards here? I promise you that this thread will have a lovingly curated, permanent home, and I would be extremely interested in what you have to say. In fact, I'll go so far as to say that if you mention a film, an actor or actress, a director, a score, or whatever, I'll be very likely to see it just based on your discussion. Thanks in advance, and I hope you all can help me out here because I know zippo, and I want to learn.
  5. There is nothing wrong with your television set. Do not attempt to adjust the picture. We are controlling transmission. If we wish to make it louder, we will bring up the volume. If we wish to make it softer, we will tune it to a whisper. We can reduce the focus to a soft blur, or sharpen it to crystal clarity. We will control the horizontal. We will control the vertical. For the next few minutes, sit quietly, and we will control all that you see and hear. You are about to experience the awe and mystery which reaches from the inner mind to ... The Outer Limits. Serious band members will tell you that Henry Fillmore (1881-1956) is no John Phillip Sousa (1854-1932), but, like it or not, he's one of the most famous - and certainly one of the most prolific - composers of marches in American history. Earlier today I mentioned Carl Stalling's screamer (the first time I heard that term, I thought exactly what you thought - we're all a bunch of degenerates), and that reminded me of a certain march I heard performed a couple years ago that got into my head, and stayed there for about a week. "The Footlifter" was composed in 1929 by Henry Fillmore, and published in 1935. The march was commissioned by a Cincinnati insurance agency who wanted something catchy to go along with their company's slogan: "A penny a day" (apparently an annual policy was $36.50). This agency sponsored the radio broadcasts of Fillmore's band, so Fillmore had plenty of incentive to do it - especially considering the economic climate of the time. It was dedicated to Harry T. Garner, Secretary of the Cincinnati Automobile Dealers Association. I'm not sure if the two men were friends, or if there was a business relationship (if anyone wants to research this, I'd be very interested in knowing the information). It was composed under the pseudonym "Harold Bennett" - I'm also not sure why Fillmore used a pseudonym. I put "A penny a day" in bold two paragraphs back, because that's the phrase that's going to mess with your mind for the next few hours or days, depending on your level of mental control. The opening statement of "The Footlifter" uses the exact same rhythm as "A penny a day," and that motif is repeated throughout the march - you'll hear it dozens of times. You'll hear it tonight while you're trying to sleep. It's a catchy piece - not a great piece of music, but the very definition of an earworm - only the strongest among you will be able to fend it off. All you need to do is listen to the entire thing one time, and you'll be cursing yourself (and me) tomorrow as you walk around endlessly singing to yourself, "A penny a day!" The Footlifter is also widely played by high school bands because it's not that difficult, and offers "a lot of bang for the buck." Still, some bands are better than others, and this version is about as good as any I've seen on YouTube (it's the U.S. Air Force Band of the Rockies). The second theme, becoming quiet and shifting to E-flat major (around 1:05 in this video), is particularly insidious, as it, too, uses its own form of the "A Penny A Day" motif. Some conductors choose to play it as something close to a screamer - The Footlifter is a showpiece, and offers a lot of leeway (this version is played at a moderately fast speed, but I actually kind of like its brashness).
  6. I never had the pleasure to hear Albertina Walker in person, but listening to her recordings I came to feel that I knew her. She was one for the ages. She died in 2010, and was mourned across the gospel and r and b world. Aretha Franklin was one of many artists who sang at Albertina's funeral. I am not a Christian, and I don't believe in God, but I can really appreciate the kind of religious ecstasy that can be found in Albertina Walker's singing, as here:
  7. A few years ago, I was preparing for a trip to northern Spain and southern/southwestern France, which was to include a visit to Bilbao, where I'd never been before. I've been an ardent lover for most of my life of the musical works produced by the collaboration of Bertolt Brecht and Kurt Weill, so naturally my thoughts turned to the "Bilbao-Song" from Happy-End. Googling it, or YouTubing it, I chanced upon a version of it translated into French and sung by the late French singer Catherine Sauvage. I don't know why I was unfamiliar with her work untl then, but I fell in love with her immediately, and have never woken from the dream. Here she is singing "Bilbao-Song". Here she is singing a French version of the Brecht-Weill song "Nannas Lied", their penultimate collaboration.* (I used a line from this in my signature here for a while: "Et en fin d'compte, mes réserves s'épuisent", although I might more poignantly have used "Et en fin d'compte, on n'a pas toujours dix-sept ans".) Catherine Sauvage is especially associated with the songs of Léo Ferré, as here with "Est-ce ainsi que les hommes vivent?". And here most wonderfully with "Paris-Canaille". And here. And stupendously here. *The refrain in the French lyric runs "Hier tu pleures, oí¹ sont tes larmes? Oí¹ est la neige qui tombait l'an dernier?" (Yesterday you weep, where are your tears? Where is the snow that fell last year?) Brecht's original is "Wo sind die Tränen von gestern Abend? Wo ist der Schnee vom vergangenen Jahr?" (Where are the tears from yesterday evening? Where is the snow from last year?) These harken back, of course, to the repeated question in Franí§ois Villon's famous ballade: "Mais oí¹ sont les neiges d'antan?" which Dante Gabriel Rossetti put into English as "where are the snows of yesteryear?", in which he coined the word "yesteryear", not much used since except in The Lone Ranger.
  8. This request may fall into the "Snowball's Chance" category, but does anyone know where to find a streaming version of "The Broadway Melody" (1929 version) online? It's not on Amazon, Netflix, Hulu, or YouTube. It was the first "talkie" ever to win the "Outstanding Picture" award, so there might be some hope.
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