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Stephen Sondheim -(March 22, 1930 – November 26, 2021)

November 26th, 2021

  • Stephen Sondheim, Bernadette Peters and Mandy Patinkin in rehearsal for Sunday in the Park with George (1984)

  • Stephen Sondheim

    Sondheim’s best-known works as composer and lyricist include A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum (1962), Company (1970), Follies (1971), A Little Night Music (1973), Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street (1979), Sunday in the Park with George (1984), and Into the Woods (1987). He was also known for writing the lyrics for West Side Story (1957) and Gypsy (1959).

  • A must see – on youtube James Lipton interviewed Stephen Sondheim

  • BBC obit see photos of Elizabeth Taylor and Stephen Sondheim (Also Judy Dench video of singing his song)

  • The Stephen Sondheim cameo you didn’t realize was in Tick, Tick…Boom

    Stephen Sondheim’s Voice End of Tick Tick Boom

    “When I showed him the finished film, he said, ‘You treated me gently and royally, for which I’m grateful,'” says Miranda. “And then he wrote me and said, ‘But the last phone message to Jon, the language feels a little trite. I don’t feel like I would ever really say that. Can I rewrite it?’ I was like, ‘Gosh, a rewrite from Stephen Sondheim — do I accept this?'”
    There was only one problem — Whitford had already wrapped his work on the project and was unavailable to re-record it. Sondheim offered to record the new version for Miranda, and it’s his voice that audiences can hear in the final cut.
    “It makes me weep to even think about,” gushes Miranda. “Because he was such a mentor to Jon and generations of songwriters. But yes, he rewrote that message and recorded it himself and just sent it to me.”
    He’s not good, he’s not nice, he’s Stephen Sondheim.

  • Listen to 22 best “I am still here

  • Robert Bly – (December 23, 1926 – November 21, 2021)

    November 22nd, 2021
  • Things to Think

    Think in ways you’ve never thought before.
    If the phone rings, think of it as carrying a message
    Larger than anything you’ve ever heard,
    Vaster than a hundred lines of Yeats.

    Think that someone may bring a bear to your door,
    Maybe wounded and deranged; or think that a moose
    Has risen out of the lake, and he’s carrying on his antlers
    A child of your own whom you’ve never seen.

    When someone knocks on the door, think that he’s about
    To give you something large: tell you you’re forgiven,
    Or that it’s not necessary to work all the time, or that it’s
    Been decided that if you lie down no one will die.
    Robert Bly


  • A Billy Moyers – Gathering Men, Robert Bly

  • Mark Rylance How Robert Bly Changed My Life

  • Robert Bly – Poetry Foundation

  • Robert Bly wiki

  • Baseera Khan – “I Am an Archive”

    November 17th, 2021
  • Baseera K.

    Baseera Khan I am an archive – New Yorker

  • Baseera Khan homepage

  • Baseera Khan I am an Archive

  • I am a Muslim – an interview with Baseera Khan

  • Jakucho Setouchi – (15 May 1922 – 9 November 2021)

    November 12th, 2021


  • (Hagiwara Kenichi or known as Sho-Ken and Jakucho Setouchi – from the Magazine Jakucho 2009) Hagiwara Kenichi and Jakucho Setouchi were very close, she was his surrogate mother. In this magazine their trips to Yokahama and Kyoto and their daily conversation were recorded. Hagiwara Kenichi passed away a few years ago.


  • Mario Ambrosieus posted the sad news of the passing of Jakucho Setouchi at 99 years old.

    Distant Rain Jakucho Setouchi and Tess Gallahar
    (I would like to read this.)

    Distant Rain records a conversation between the eloquent American poet Tess Gallagher and the renowned Japanese novelist and Buddhist nun Jakucho Setouchi that took place in 1990 at Jakuan, Setouchi’s home temple, in Sagano, Japan.

    Gallagher had recently experienced the death of her husband, Raymond Carver, an internationally renowned short story writer. In a frank and at times humorous exchange, the two women trade observations about love and loss, and about the role of writing in coping with grief.

    Their words, reproduced in both English and Japanese, unfold accordion-style across the rich colors and striking imagery of artist Keiko Hara’s wood-block and stencil prints. Complemented by the exquisite lettering of typographer Maki Yamashita and under the guidance of master bookbinder Atsuo Ikuta, Distant Rain is not only a moving tribute to the sustaining power of love but also a stunning example of the art of book design


    (For Hagiwara Kenichi, the last time he visited Ten Ryu Mon in Kyoto was 25 years ago)

    Dean Stockwell -Delicate to Delirium – RIP Nov 7 2021

    November 9th, 2021

    Life in pictures Dean Stockwell

    Dean Stockwell wiki

    Great interview here – all about Dean Stockwell (by Michael Buckley
    Films in Review, January 1985)

    “Cannes is a good place for me,” claims Dean Stockwell, shortly after PARIS, TEXAS (one of his two new pictures) won the Grand Prize at the 1984 Cannes Film Festival. He has twice shared acting honors at Cannes, with Bradford Dillman and Orson Welles for Compulsion (1959) and with Ralph Richardson, Katherine Hepburn and Jason Robards, Jr. in Long Day’s Journey Into Night (1962). And it was there that he met his wife, Joy: “It was in 1976, at one o’clock in the morning, on the beach in front of the Carlton Hotel.” Says Stockwell: “Between Paris, Texas and Dune (in which he plays Dr. Yueh), I think I’ve got a pretty good start on what amounts to a third career.”

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    (Dean Stockwell photo by Dennis Hopper)

    “Long Day’s Journey Into Night,” states Stockwell, “was as intense and rewarding an experience as I’ve had. It’s a small cast, and one of the greatest plays of the century by one of the greatest American playwrights. We rehearsed it six weeks with a brilliant director, Sidney Lumet. I feel that the film is the best American film made from a play – that I’ve ever seen. There was no screenplay. Some cuts were made to make it feasible for a film – but nothing was transposed. It was very gratifying.”
    In the book, Kate, by Charles Higham, Sidney Lumet is quoted: “Dean would come in with a bottle of vodka, and Kate at first almost did what she did to him in the movie – struck him. She was so angry at him – out of love. But she was tender to him. The first day of work was cold, and he had forgotten to bring an overcoat. The next day, there was a coat in his dressing room; she had gone out after shooting and bought him one. She always had an enormous affinity for heavy drinkers – maybe because of Tracy.”

  • 1aaacompulsion

    Darrow was the inspiration for the character of Johnathan Wilk in the 1956 novel Compulsion, a thinly fictionalized account of the Leopold and Loeb case. In 1959, the novel was adapted into a film of the same name, starring the legendary filmmaker Orson Welles as Wilk. Welles, whose closing monologue was the longest ever committed to film at that time, shared the Best Actor award with co-stars Bradford Dillman and Dean Stockwell.

    Compulsion (1959)

    Dean Stockwell made three remarkable films in his mid-career starting with Compulsion followed by Sons and Lovers and Long Day’s Journey into Night.


  • Sons and Lovers

    Of Sons and Lovers, Stockwell maintains, “It’s a classic film. It holds up – over a long period of time. It had a brilliant cast, and I feel it was a pretty damn good rendition of that book.” Sons and Lovers headed the National Board of Review’s 10 Best Films of 1960 list. It tied with The Apartment as the NY Film Critics Best Film. In his FIReview, Henry Hart wrote: “Rarely has so honest and meaningful a novel been turned into so good a motion picture.” He noted, “Stockwell does things . . . an actor twice his age would be proud of,” and added, “I think the thing about his performance that fascinated me most was his seemingly spontaneous use of bits of business which seemed to come . . . from his feeling for the character.”

  • The O’Neill classic, says Stockwell, “remains one of my favorite films. And Paris, Texas is certainly another. The film was put together and shot in a most unusual way. Sam Shepard, probably our leading playwright right now, wrote the screenplay. But, as we started, it was simply a synopsis, a breakdown of scenes – with no dialogue at all. At the time, Sam was shooting Country, which opened the New York Film Festival. Everyday, when he got through acting, he would type out dialogue for Paris, Texas.” (Interview with Dean Stockwell)

    Dean Stockwell dean-stockwell in Blue Velvet

    Dean Stockwell, Blue Velvet – It’s not easy to out-bizarre your fellow cast members in a David Lynch movie, but Dean Stockwell managed to do just that in his one-scene turn as Frank Booth’s (Dennis Hopper) unctuous, kabuki-faced, satin-jacketed mentor in malevolence, Ben. The mellow yin to Hopper’s manic yang, Stockwell’s eerie lip-synching rendition of Roy Orbison’s “In Dreams” just barely hints at what lies inside the depraved mind of the drug dealer/pimp. (via)

    “I hate to admit it, but you can’t do a role unless it’s somewhere in your psyche. People don’t realize how vast the subconscious is. It’s like infinity.” Dean Stockwell.

    Albert Camus The Plague, Leonard Cohen & Joni Mitchell – Nov 7 2021

    November 7th, 2021
  • William Hurt and Sandrine Bonniare in Plague (youtube)

    Albert Camus

    Camus albertmaria and Maria Casarès

    Camus and his women

    Camus had met Maria Casares, later star of Cocteau’s Orpheus but already an established actress, in 1944. Daughter of a rich Spanish Republican, a refugee from Franco, she was a passionate, wilful, intelligent woman. She was probably the only one of his lovers who had a relationship of equality with him. In addition, Todd says, ‘If he was a Don Juan, she was a Don Juana’.

  • (Albert Camus and Viggo Mortensen)
    Far from Men Viggo Mortensen

  • Leonard Cohen archive (Cohen died on Nov 7,2016.)

    Happy birthday Joni Mitchell
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  • Happy Diwali!

    November 4th, 2021
  • F. Clementi


    Radha Giving Butter-Milk to Krishna, illustration to Bihari’s Sat Saiya, Basohli, c. 1690

    See more Basoli paintings

    Shahzia Sikander Indian Miniture

  • Mistress of the Dark

    October 30th, 2021

  • (Self Portrait- Michiko Kon)

    Michiko Kon Mistress of the Dark

  • (Art by Kaitlyn who is 15 years old)

  • Happy Halloween!

    Laurie Anderson at Hirshorn – Exhibition till July 2022

    October 26th, 2021

  • Laurie Anderson at the Hirshhorn

    Looking Back While Facing Forward: Laurie Anderson at the Hirshhorn

  • Laurie Anderson: The Weather – Hirshhorn Exhibition and Portrait


    Laurie Anderson The Weather


  • Laurie Anderson – interview

  • See more art from Vito Schnabel Gallery – Laurie Anderson


  • (Photo by Mary Ellen Mark)
    RIP Lou Reed who passed away on Oct 27, 2013.

    RIP Manuel Neri (April 12, 1930–October 18,2021)

    October 20th, 2021

  • Manuel Neri wiki

    Manuel Neri – Hackettmill (See more art here)

  • Manuel Neri was an American sculptor who is recognized for his life-size figurative sculptures in plaster, bronze, and marble. In Neri’s work with the figure, he conveys an emotional inner state that is revealed through body language and gesture.

    Granddaughter Kaitlyn performed at Phoenix art museum.

  • Viggo Mortensen in Two Films, with Cronneberg & another with Lisandro Alonso

    October 19th, 2021

  • Crimes of the Future

    (On David Cronenberg)[He] has helped me do really good work, better than other directors. Maybe because he understands my process and because we have some things in common in terms of our sensibility – the kinds of books we like to read, our sense of humor is similar.
    It’s comforting to be working with someone you know will make a good movie. Some people will say, ‘Ahhh, he’s over the top, it’s gratuitous,’ [but] I disagree completely. He’s one of the most responsible filmmakers today as far as showing violence – which there’s very little of compared to other movies. It just stays with you because he shows very little of it. It just stays with you and he’s very direct about it. He shows you what happens, and what the consequences are physically and emotionally, in some cases; certainly he does in A History of Violence (2005), and also here [in Eastern Promises (2007)], that makes him very honest.

    Viggo Mortensen IMDB

  • Eureka – Viggo’s new film with Jauja director Lisandro Alonso

    The first part of the film, titled “Western” and set on the U.S.-Mexico border, will have echos of Jauja but is not a sequel, following Mortensen playing a father named Murphy searching for his daughter (Agger), who has been kidnapped. The second part of the film, titled “Pine Ridge,” is set in South Dakota on a Native American Reservation in the present-day. While there aren’t details on Part 3 yet, Part 4, titled “Amazonia,” will follow a character named Ubirajara, “a member of a far happier indigenous settlement in the Amazon who goes off to dig for gold, contracting, literally, gold fever.”

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  • Far from Men
    See Far from Men – Viggo Mortensen and Albert Camus (Previous post)


  • Viggo on his art –
    “Photography, painting or poetry those are just extensions of me, how I perceive things, they are my way of communicating.” (via IMDB)
    Happy birthday Viggo Mortensen

  • Hannah Arendt – Lesson from Life

    October 18th, 2021
  • How the facts of Hannah Arendt’s life read like fiction

    Lesson from Life – Hannah Arendt

    As her friend Mary McCarthy once said, Arendt was “a magnificent stage diva”. Focusing on only one episode in Arendt’s eventful existence, Margarethe von Trotta’s dull 2012 biopic Hannah Arendt didn’t show the half of it. Time, surely, for the 12-part HBO drama series. Having read Ann Heberlein’s lyrical yet lucid On Love and Tyranny, I suggest Episode One end with the young Arendt declaring, “I can either study philosophy or I can drown myself”.

  • Raul Hilberg, the first historian to document the banality of Nazi evil, nursed a lifelong grudge against Arendt. who borrowed from and popularized his work without crediting him.

    Hanna Arendt never did the research, she popularized the idea that Nazis were primarily bureaucrats. Here is a book about the man whose research Hanna used without attribution.

    Hilberg was not happy either. After toiling for thirteen years on his book, he was being eclipsed by someone who had worked for little more than two years on hers. “Who was I, after all?” Hilberg asked bitterly in his autobiography. “She, the thinker, and I, the laborer who wrote only a simple report, albeit one which was indispensable once she had exploited it.”

  • Hannah and Her Admirers by David Rieff (Susan Sontag’s son)

    Margarethe von Trotta’s biopic of Hannah Arendt is a film about ideas that remains intellectually detached from them.
    Arendt had relied, by her own admission, on Raul Hilberg’s magisterial history of the Shoah, The Destruction of the European Jews, published in 1961. Most valuable of all to her was Hilberg’s account of the role of the Judenräte during the Shoah, and to what degree the leaders of these councils had in effect collaborated in the Jews’ extermination. Her conclusion was that had the Jews been leaderless and unorganized, there would have been chaos and misery, but nowhere near as many as 6 million would have been murdered. It was this position, far more than her thinking about the banality of evil, that had set so much of the official Jewish world against her. And while Hilberg did not agree with her, as he makes clear in a few icy paragraphs of his memoir, The Politics of Memory, he nonetheless defended Arendt publicly during the controversy.

    It is a film about ideas that remains intellectually detached from them. Despite her immense talent as a director of actors, perhaps with Hannah Arendt von Trotta is not so far from those late Rossellini films after all, and is nowhere near being as diligent or trustworthy.