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This weekend in LA: Holiday Open House at the Pasadena Museum of History

Pasadena Museum of History Holiday Open House  Sunday 12/9 1:00 – 4:00 pm.  The perfect Cultural Cocktail of Music, Visual Treats, and a Family Craft in a Beaux-Arts style Pasadena Cultural Heritage landmark. Performances by the Ad Hoc Consort throughout the afternoon. The costumed musicians will perform on a variety period instruments including the Viola da braccio and the Oud, an early form of what became the Lute; and a 16th century German Serpent horn. In addition to the music the event will include: refreshments, a family craft, and a visit to the exhibition Something Revealed; California Women Artists Emerge, 1860-1960. 470 W. Walnut Street Pasadena, CA 91103 626.577.1660  All Photography from a prior Holiday Open House © 2018 Leticia Marie Sanchez                   Photo Below: Children’s Craft Station at the Pasadena Museum of History’s Holiday

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The Christmas fruitcake fiasco: Puccini versus Toscanini

In her revealing book, Secret Lives of the Great Composers, Elizabeth Lundy described a fruity fiasco between two rivals: opera composers, Giacomo Puccini and conductor Arturo Toscanini: “During the years of Puccini and Toscanini’s feud, they had very little contact- except for one Christmastime incident. That year Puccini forgot to remove the conductor’s name from the list of friends to whom he sent the traditional Italian holiday gift, a pannetone cake. When Puccini realized his error, he sent Toscanini a telegram reading: “PANNETONE SENT BY MISTAKE. PUCCINI.” Toscanini replied, “PANNETONE EATEN BY MISTAKE. TOSCANINI.”

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Autumnal Splendor in Southern California

  “Autumn is a second spring when every leaf is a flower.”  – Albert Camus (at the Garden of Flowing Fragrance, Huntington) All Photography  © 2018 Leticia Marie Sanchez                

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Rossini’s Risky Business

“Please don’t throw me out the window!! I’m a MAESTRO!” Does Procrastination lead to Defenestration? Professor Robert Greenberg, in a wonderful lecture for the Teaching Company, read a letter in which opera composer Gioachino Rossini (nicknamed “The Italian Mozart”) confessed his last minute habits. According to Rossini: “Wait until the evening before opening night- nothing primes inspiration more than necessity! Whether it be the presence of a copyist waiting for your work or the prodding of an impresario tearing at his hair (In my time, all the impresarios of Italy were bald by 30). I wrote the overture to La Gazza Ladra the day of its opening- in the theater itself- where I was imprisoned by the director and under the direct surveillance of the stage hands who were instructed to throw my original text through the window, page by page,

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“Maria By Callas”- A MUST SEE FILM

 “Maria By Callas: In Her Own Words”- A MUST SEE FILM by Leticia Marie Sanchez Directed by Tom Volf, “Maria by Callas,” offers a sublime, moving portrait of a legendary opera singer using never-before-seen footage. The film dispels the notion that Callas reigned as a diva, revealing instead the grace, poise, and self-restraint she showed while perpetually facing intrusive harassment by the media. Through the film, one gains insight into the cruelty of the headlines towards the opera singer, who was called tempestuous, for instance, simply for having bronchitis. The world expected her to be beyond human, but the film revels in her humanity.  As Callas herself noted, those around her, including her ex-husband seemed drunk on the glory of being in her orbit; meanwhile the star, no matter how successful, continued to focus obsessively on her vocal craft. Even in

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The Key of D Minor? Vitamin D deficiency may have contributed to Mozart’s death

According to an article in Live Science, the lack of sunlight-induced Vitamin D may have contributed to Mozart’s young demise. The authors of the study surmise that the Vitamin D deficiency could have made the composer more susceptible to a plethora of infections during the winter. According to the authors of the study, “Mozart did much of his composing at night, so would have slept during much of the day. At the latitude of Vienna, 48 degrees N, it is impossible to make vitamin D from solar ultraviolet-B irradiance for about 6 months of the year. Mozart died on December 5, 1791, two to three months into the vitamin D winter.” The researchers include: D. William Grant, of the Sunlight, Nutrition and Health Research Center in San Francisco, and Stefan Pilz of the Medical University of Graz in Austria For the

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Review: In the Raw: A fresh take on the Renaissance at the Getty Center- A Must See Exhibit

In the Raw: A Fresh take on the Renaissance at the Getty Center by Leticia Marie Sanchez The Renaissance Nude Oct 30, 2018- Jan 27, 2019 The exhibit on the Renaissance nude at the Getty does not pull any punches- it is authentic, raw, and illuminating. What makes it stand out is that idealization is not the name of the game. Instead, the exhibit gets to the heart of the matter. There are books on anatomy, studies from morgues, saints being tortured, bodies that are emaciated and infirm contrasting with ripe, seductive, athletic, forms. The lushness of a painting like Titian’s Venus Rising From the Sea is viewed within the context of the nude form in all its facets. Unlike other Renaissance exhibits which focus on iconography alone, the Getty exhibit explores what proves more fascinating, the intriguing world behind

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Making a Splash at Christie’s Beverly Hills- October 23-27 (Post War Contemporary Sale-Los Angeles Tour)

  by Leticia Marie Sanchez Art-loving Angelenos will have a chance to check out iconic Post-War paintings at Christie’s Beverly Hills this week! The works on view include David Hockney’s Portrait of an Artist (Pool with Two Figures) and Edward Hopper’s Chop Suey- which is no chopped liver,- it’s estimated to be worth about$ 70 million! According to Christie’s the Hockney’s painting is “poised to become the most valuable work of art by a living artist ever sold at auction.” Post War Contemporary Sale – Los Angeles Tour:  David Hockney (b. 1937), Portrait of an Artist (Pool with Two Figures), 1972. Acrylic on canvas. 84 x 120 in (213.5 x 305 cm). Estimate on request. Offered in the Post-War and Contemporary Art Evening Sale on 15 November 2018 at Christie’s in New York © David Hockney       Edward Hopper, Chop Suey (1929). Oil on

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Beautiful Day at the Norton Simon Fall Family Festival

All Photography  © 2018 Leticia Marie Sanchez

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Art world crime: In the news: Joshua Bell impersonator robs hotel room of celebrity violinist

Throwback Tuesday to an Art Crime from 2012 Art World Crime: Joshua Bell Impersonator robs hotel room of world-famous Violinist by Leticia Marie Sanchez HELLO. MY NAME IS JOSHUA BELL. CAN SOMEONE GIVE ME A VIOLIN? OR A ROLEX? THANKS. So while Joshua Bell is performing the Brahms Concerto with the London Philharmonic in Zaragoza, Spain, a man goes to the front desk of his hotel claiming to be the world-famous violinist. The Hotel clerk does not bother checking the guy’s ID. (Ever try Google Image, buddy?) The hotel hands over the key to Joshua Bell’s room to a man off the street while poor Bell fiddles his heart out on stage. The thief no doubt could not wait to get his sticky fingers on Bell’s 1713 Stradivarius, worth about 4 million dollars. But, unlike the thief, Bell was actually working that

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