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Wise Man: Marcel Proust

The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes but in having new eyes.

 

 Marcel Proust 

 

Marc Chagall


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Happy Birthday, leap year baby Gioachino Rossini


GiorcesRossini1Give me a laundry list

and I’ll set it to music”-

Gioachino Rossini

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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, to the copyists waiting down below.

If I did not compose quickly enough-

the stage hands were instructed to throw ME out the window, instead.”

Lucklly, Rossini finished the overture to La Gazza Ladra in the nick of time.

Thus, avoiding the fate of the gentleman in pantaloons above.

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Picasso and Monets– burnt to a crisp?

 Picasso and Monets—Burnt To a Crisp?

by Leticia Marie Sanchez

Cultural Cocktail Hour® is a registered Trademark

Left:  Matisse, Reading Girl in White and Yellow(1919)

Will she ever see the light of day?

Carmelized Monet. No, this is not a trendy Crème Brule whipped up by a chef obsessed with molecular gastronomy, but quite possibly one of the most heinous art crimes covered by Cultural Cocktail Hour.

Olga Dogaru, mother of art thief Radu Dogaru, confessed to using her oven to set ablaze seven masterpieces valued at between 100 and 200 million Euros including works by Picasso, Matisse, Gaugin (and two by Monet) as if they were no more than slices of pizza.

Dogaru’s son Radu was the ringleader of a group of six Romanian art thieves who broke into Rotterdam’s Kunsthal museum last October with a set of pliers. After her son’s arrest, Mama Dogaru hid the pilfered artworks in a graveyard in the village of Caracliu (Talk about unresponsive audiences).Then, Ms. Dogaru essentially transformed this case from art kidnapping to outright art murder.

What museums desire most is to retrieve their works. Ergo, most art thieves with an IQ higher than a gnat realize that keeping the works intact can be a future bargaining chip in order to reduce their sentences.

In the dim attic of Ms. Dogaru’s mind, however, the light bulb went off a bit too late.

According to an interview with People magazine, Ms. Dogaru revealed her recent epiphany,

“I sense I made a big mistake.”

Alas, sense and sensibility does not seem to be her strong suit.  Moreover, with the classic Parenting 101 mistakes exhibited by Mrs. Dogaru (enabling, aiding, abetting, barbecuing Cubist works), it was inevitable that her mama’s boy would not wind up an Eagle Scout.

Of course, now the case has its inevitable twist.

According to Reuters, forensic experts linked Mama Dogaru’s humble oven to the traces of a specific Prussian Blue paint in addition to other materials corresponding with the missing paintings.

And yet, despite all evidence to the contrary, her son now claims that his mother’s initial confession was all a lie. That if he is somehow transported away from the blasted Bucharest courtroom and allowed to be tried in the Netherlands, he will reveal the paintings’ location.

Recently, however, the trial was delayed due to offending footwear.

The art thief’s defense attorney donned blue suede shoes, which sent the judge into a tizzy. The judge fined the attorney more than 1400 dollars for his bold fashion sense.

Unfortunately for Radu, having an attorney who dresses like Elvis is the least of his problems.


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Happy Cultural Valentine!

HAPPY’S VALENTINE’S DAY to my readers!

Wishing you a day filled with love, art, and music!

All Photography© 2016 Leticia Marie Sanchez

Cultural escapade at the Getty Center

Cultural Cocktail Hour® is a registered TrademarkV-day 4

V-DayV-Day 2

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Sculptures taking Selfies?

When even the sculptures take selfies, you know that we are in trouble!

What would Michelangelo say?

by Leticia Marie Sanchez

Kudos to these artists for providing a snapshot into today’s culture. Lines of tourists crowd Florence’s esteemed Uffizi Gallery, not necessarily to take the time to observe the art, but rather to take a quick selfie with Botticelli’s Birth of Venus before rushing onto the next Instagrammable moment. Today many individuals walk by masterpieces because they are too busy staring at their cellphones or getting ready for a closeup.

Based on Bertel Thorvaldsen’s “Eve Holding an Apple,” “The Immortalization of  Self” by Jana Cruder and Matthew La Penta captures today’s self-obsessed culture with cheeky precision.

CCH selects this work as the most timely at LA Art Show this week.

Narcissistic statue seen at LA Art Show 2016

selfie sculpture 1Selfie Sculpture 5

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

“Immortalization of Self” by Jana Cruder and Matthew La Penta, based on Bertal Thorvaldsen’s “Eve Holding an Apple”

Axiom Gallery

tumblr_m2gtnczn9G1rt1kt8o1_r1_400Bertel Thorvaldsen, Venus, 1813-16 (Copenhagen, Denmark, Thorvaldsens Museum)

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Pictures at an Exhibition- LA Art Show 2016

La Art Show7LorgnetteLa Art show 10La Art show 15La Art show 14LA Art show 11

by 

Leticia Marie Sanchez

Seeing Chagall’sMagic Flute was like running into an old friend.

Chagall and Klimt galore, plus a quite a few undiscovered surprises made LA Art Show a visual treat!

LA Art show 13LA Art show 1 LA Art show 5LA Art show 2La Art show 10

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CCH End-of-January Highlights

Cultural Cocktail Hour End-of-January Highlights

The end-of-January’s LA Cultural recipe includes: an Explosion of art, an Infusion of Impressionism, and a Shot of VerdiEnjoy!

Cultural Cocktail Hour® is a registered Trademark

LA CCHLA Art Show

January 27 – 31

http://www.laartshow.com

 

hale_crimson_600The Artist’s Garden: American Impressionism and the Garden Movement

Jan 23 – May 09

Huntington Library. 1151 Oxford Road. San Marino, CA  91108. http://www.huntington.org

Philip Leslie Hale (1865-1931), The Crimson Rambler, ca. 1908, oil on canvas, 25 1/4 x 30 3/16 in. Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, Philadelphia, Joseph E. Temple Fund.

lamcchVerdi Requiem: Los Angeles Master Chorale

Sat. Jan. 30th, 2 pm; Sun. Jan. 31,  7 pm

Grant Gershon, conductor; Amber Wagner, soprano Michelle DeYoung, mezzo soprano;  Issachah Savage, tenor Morris Robinson, bass;   Walt Disney Concert Hall.. 111 S. Grand Avenue  LA, CA 90012. www.lamc.org

Photo credit: Jamie Pham

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Wise Man: Goethe

A man should hear a little music, read a little poetry, and see a fine picture every day of his life, in order that worldly cares may not obliterate the sense of the beautiful which God has implanted in the human soul.

 Johann Wolfgang von Goethe  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Dante Gabriel Rossetti, Annunciation, Tate Gallery, London

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Review: “Made in L.A” by the Los Angeles Master Chorale

Passport to the Human Soul:

LA Master Chorale’s Made in LA

By

Leticia Marie Sanchez

LA Master ChoraleLA Master Chorale’s Made in LA provided audiences with a passport to the human soul. The diverse program not only allowed concertgoers to experience distinct cultures, but also transported them on a journey to understand the human condition in all its complexity: solitude, pain, love and redemption. Prior to the concert, LA Master Chorale’s Artistic Director, Grant Gershon announced that in light of the recent tragic current events, the concert was a “response to nihilism;” the evening’s program was dedicated to “victims of hate around the world.”

Made in LA opened with Morten Lauridsen’s Ave Maria, an uplifting antidote to violence, a work of art that brings us closer to celestial realm. The piece invokes the Virgin Mary, a figure who symbolizes one who has transcended human suffering. The singers of LA’s Master Chorale seamlessly expressed the rich resplendent harmonies; on stage, singers of a multitude of ages and races came together in unity, making it the perfect piece to open the concert.

Continuing the musical journey was the work of Dale Trumbore’s The Whole Sea In Motion, a composition that explored what it means to feel solitude in nature. Pianist Lisa Edwards evoked the waves that flowed in the lyrical prose of Anne Bronte, on which Trumbore’s composition was based. Water proved one of several themes running through Made in LA. For instance, Moira Smiley’s charming In The Desert With You, filled with onomatopoeia, provided a vivid and witty reflection on LA’s drought crisis.

In addition to water, the connection between poetry and music proved another consistent theme of the evening. In Matthew Brown’s Another Lullaby for Insomniacs, the hauntingly beautiful lyrics were reminiscent of Romantic poetry, centering on unrequited love with sleep personified as the elusive mistress. The tragic poetry of Oscar Wilde’s De Profundis was powerfully amplified in Jeff Beal’s The Salvage Men, a complex work that explores the human condition. The Master Chorale delved into the nuances of the poetry of both Wilde and poet Kay Ryan in a way that was profoundly moving and healing.

A third theme of Made in LA was the Ave Maria, which also provided inspiration for two of the composers in the latter half of the program, Shawn Kirchner and Paul Chihara. Chihara’s Ave Maria/Scarborough Fair juxtaposed sacred text with folk song. The female oboist represented the earthly emissary, as she subtly heralded the music of Simon and Garfunkle. This overlay of modern and classic also occurred during the Renaissance, when composers would insert popular music into sacred texts, so Chihara is in good company.

The program concluded with the world premiere of Nilo Alcala’s Manga Pakalagian  an exuberant and at times hypnotic choral suite. The piece, which marked the first time that the LA Master Chorale sang in Tagalog, contained traditional music from the Southern Philippines, Kulintag, which dates back over a thousand years.

Made in LA’s ambitious program ultimately provided its audience with respite and relief, a sacred space to reflect on humanity and emerge with a sense of healing and hope.

Photo Credit: © Steve Cohn

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