To quote Judy Collins, “Who knows where the time goes?” We surely don’t. Please forgive us, dear readers, for not having posted one solitary word in July, though our Facebook comings-and-goings were well documented, as were our Tweets, Instagrams and live comments at every event we covered or were happy to be at.
Oy! To say we were busy is an understatement. We spent July 4th in Pasadena, at a very literary barbecue. And yes, there is such a thing, as it was presided over by raconteurs/writers Mark Schwartz and Erika Schickel, where guests had been asked to prepare odes to our nation’s Day of Independence. (We demurred.)
Then there was the wedding of our fabulous clothes designer, Bruno Duluc to his beloved Burke Daniel. Fortunately, we weren’t asked to play the harp, although we were asked to bring numerous changes of clothes, including a gown described below, as the festivities continued long after the ceremony. We couldn’t find a picture of us in that frock, but we do have the one below with the harp.
Our opening number at the wedding was a full-length gown and pair of huge black net gloves that Duluc had designed for us when we received the Lester Horton Award for Furthering the Visibility of Dance.
Of course, for the awards ceremony, we had the fabulous Diavolo dancer, Garrett Wolf, carry our train as we descended from the top of the aisle at the El Portal Theater while Pavarotti crooned Nessun Dorma over the loudspeakers.
This had been preceded by Diavolo director/genius Jacques Heim giving the sold-out house the most astonishing speech before presenting us with our crystal trophy. The video of my life (below) was made by the incredible filmmaker/artist Kate Johnson, and was shown to the somewhat shocked and baffled crowd. Indeed, some attendees are still reeling. (Did we say Garrett was mostly nude and, well, dance critics can be a stuffy lot…). And speaking of Diavolo, they’ll be rocking the Greek Theatre on September 12!
On a more current note, our colleague Matt Carey took us to a screening of Woody Allen’s latest romp, Magic in the Moonlight. No matter that it’s gotten mixed reviews and is barely seen (at least in L.A.), we loved it.
And it was particularly refreshing to see Colin Firth in leading man mode, albeit as Woody’s cranky alter ego, with Emma Stone (right).
After a year on the back burner, we finally wrote our KCET Artbound megastory on artist/poet/sculptor/mudperson Mike M. Mollett (cover photo by D.A. Metrov, left by Dee Balson Mollett). A doc for SOCal Connected was in the works before our story first hit, which is still, btw, racking up thousands of ‘Likes’ on FB. Word just in: The KCET show airs Wed., 8/27 at 8 p.m. and repeats Fri., 8/29 at 8 p.m. and Sun., 8/31 at 6:30 p.m., and is anchored by Val Zavala.
Then there was this huge deal: We came out as a writer of satiric fiction, with the publication of our short story, The Oudist, which is in the recently released anthology, Gen F, edited by the venerable Gordy Grundy. And since the collection consists of L.A. writers, many of whom only cover the visual arts, we’ve been supplying the comic relief. We first read at Les Noces de Figaro as part of DTLAB,with Traxx’s fabulous Tara Thomas serving as MC. Two days later we were at Library Girl , a terrific reading series produced by Susan Hayden at the Ruskin Group Theatre, the second Sunday of every month. Ms. Hayden only knew our work as an international arts journalist, and booked us sight unseen. Thanks, Ms. H!
That evening, which also featured a roster of playwrights, poets and authors, including Jim Turner, Darrell Lawson, Diane Sherry Case and daughter Natalie Case, as well as filmmaker Tamar Halpern (she directed the recently released doc, trailer above, on the quirkily wonderful artist Llyn Foulkes, who was in attendance with the Dark Bob). There was also music by Mason Summit. And though none of this had anything to do with Gen F, we were told that we stole the show!
Our third reading in July took place at Shulamit Gallery in Venice and was part of Gen F. But why most of the readers sat behind a desk with their heads buried in their books is a mystery to us. We stood, proudly, and apparently, killed.
We also went to The Box with site-specific queen Heidi Duckler to check out Melinda Ring’s all-nude work, Forgetful Snow, where, surprisingly, two men left before it ended.
In addition, there were several lunches, notably one with La Chanteuse Dangereuse, Ms. Joyce Aimee, who, since she’d just bought new patio furniture and a fabulous fountain, offered to throw us a birthday party. We accepted and then trucked to Boston Court with vocalist/performance artist Anna Homler to see the contemporary music ensemble Wild Up.
Oh, yes, there was an i Palpiti chamber music performance at a private home, as well as a schlep down to Orange County with our Salon 2.0 co-host/producer, the hard-working visual artist Linda Kunik. We were there covering Natalia Osipova and Ivan Vasiliev, aka Vasipova for Fjord Review.
We plowed hard into August where one of the highs was REDCAT‘s marvelous NOW Festival. We love the place and not just because our favorite performance artist, John Fleck, previewed his high-octane work, Blacktop Highway.
Ate 9 Dance Company rounded out that bill. They danced an excerpt of For now, choreographed by the troupe’s founder, Danielle Agami, whom we wrote about for the L.A. Times in April. That work premieres this Sunday at the Wallis as part of the Voices of L.A. Festival. We’ll be there, of course!
Blablablabla…to be continued…but if you’re in the mood, here’s a link to our last 59 – count ’em – 59 reviews and stories for the L.A. Times, including our coverage of American Contemporary Ballet from last weekend…just in case you thought we’d been slacking off!