Posts

Showing posts from April, 2016

Sci-Fi and Slow Stillness

Image
Photograph by Sigrid Estrada  I had such a great time chatting with Mark Alpert, author of The Orion Plan and The Six (read my reviews here and here), in New York last week that I forgot to get a pic {Marge Simpson sound}. Mark suggested meeting on the Upper West Side at a classic New York diner, and it was a good place to sit down and discuss what motivates and informs his content, themes and style.
Remember when you had to discuss “the author’s intent” in high school English? And then you heard an author say about their book, “Oh, well that’s great if that’s what you got out of it, but that wasn’t intentional”? There’s a caveat in that. Those exam questions make us assume that we can ascribe things to writers that are not necessarily there, and we should learn to drop that presumptive approach to literature the minute we’re out of school. Case in point: I learned things about this author that surprised me because I had reflected on his books with my own ideas about what he was trying …

An Extravorganza, Real Theatre and Neatness Porn

Image
Photo credit: THOMAS GRUBE AND SONY CLASSICAL as posted in Toronto Star Okay, I might have been a little ticked that my request for an interview with Cameron Carpenter did not even garner a form reply (I've had authors, opera singers—hell, everybody I asked—all jump at the chance for more coverage) but I didn't think I was in competition with Shad, forgodssake, and Carpenter certainly ran circles around the host, whether the host knew it or no. And I was clear in my approach about not adhering to orthodoxy and actually being more interested in the arts and obviously (for anyone who takes even a cursory look at my blog and other social media can tell) being pro-LGBTQ. Ah well: biographical and interview gleanings from previous online sources will have to suffice as background to the review of his organ concert at Koerner Hall in Toronto on Friday night.  [Let me add that this review reminds me why I started this blog, lo, almost a decade ago. When I read arts reviews, I almost im…