News, Commentary on Classical Music, Jazz, Theater, Dance & More

Thomas Swan

Ranbir Kapoor/Katrina Kaif in Happier Times

Ranbir and Katrina Call it Quits >>

Reports are that Ranbir Kapoor and Katrina Kaif have called it quits. While reasons are not entirely clear at this moment, there are some things we know. They began in the most difficult of situations. They met while Ranbir was seeing Deepika Padukone. The subsequent press coverage was withering and Deepika added to it by calling Ranbir a cheater on a talk show.

Mindless Self-Indulgence: Piano Virtuoso Khatia Buniatishvili Takes No Shame in Pride, but Can You Knock Her

Orpheus Chamber Orchestra Welcomes Khatia Bunistishvili >>

The Orpheus Chamber Orchestra will be welcoming Georgian pianist Khatia Buniatshivili to Carnegie Hall as guest soloist on January 30th. They will be playing the dark and stormy Piano Concerto No. 20 by Mozart. According to the press release, the program will include, "New York premiere of Paul Chihara's orchestral arrangement of Rachmaninoff's Suite No. 2 for Two Pianos, Op. 17, Haydn's First Symphony and Arensky's Variations on a Theme by Tchaikovsky."

Still From The Revenant

The Best Picture Nominees Are.... >>

The Oscar nominations are out. It is that special awards show where Hollywood pats itself on the back and says good job. Then, gets criticized for an overly long and borrowing show broadcast and having nominated no black people. Still, it's a tradition and if you let it, and what it should stand for, it can reinvigorate your passion for cinema. Courtesy of the Hollywood Reporter. Here are the Best Picture Nominees -

Rann

PopcornFlix Presents Three Bollywood Films to Stream For Free >>

PopcornFlix is the website for movie lovers. Looking through their site, one sees that right away. Think of it as Netflix but for free, which makes it even better. To quote their website, " Popcornflix was created for people like us who want to watch "Great Movies. Free." Popcornflix has full-length movies that will make you laugh, make you cry, scare the heck out of you, or inspire you to hug the person you love. We have compelling documentaries, foreign films, unique original web series, and a place that showcases the brightest film makers of tomorrow. We built Popcornflix to be the most user friendly movie destination on the web. No movie is more than two clicks away and they are all FREE." Among the eclectic assortment of movies are three Bollywood films. They are a taste of what PopcornFlix has to offer.

A Gentleman's Guide

'A Gentleman's Guide to Love and Murder' Unite for Cabaret Evening >>

Th\e original stars of the Tony award-winning show The Gentleman's Guide to Love and Murder are planning to reunite February 13 for one show. It is a special thank you to the fans and the cast is planning a cabaret style evening, showcasing songs from the show. It will be hosted by composer Steven Lutvak and he will be joined by cast members Jefferson Mays, Bryce Pinkham and Lisa O'Hare, along with Catherine Walker.

Valentina Listisa

The Continuing Controversies of Valentina Listisa >>

Being Ukrainian by birth and being pro-Vladimir Putin supporter will not win a lot of popularity contests in the former Soviet sattelite state. It's akin to spouting the virtues of Karl Marx on the steps of the Indiana state capital. Valentina Lisitsa is blonde, would be considered good looking by a numerous amount of people, and is a sublimely talented pianist. She is also very opinionated about the politics of her birthland, even though she no longer calls it home. Eight years ago, her career was finished. No record deal or tour dates to speak of, so Valentina turned to the internet, specifically Youtube and filmed herself playing piano. The results were very surprising. Probably even for Valentina.

8 Players

'8Players' Show Held Over, Too Popular to Close? >>

Immersive theater is all the rage at the moment and the show 8Players is the high point of this style so far. In this new style of theater, you are the actor. No longer do you have to sit on your butt and watch as others act out fantasy and oddly perverse little situations. You are there, right in the middle of it all, as it happens. No time to think, only do and because it is so popular, its run is being extended through March of 2016.

Joni Mitchell Reportedly

Joni Mitchell Recovering Slowly? >>

As Joni Mitchell--the delicate blonde Canadian folk singer who penned the song theme "Woodstock" for the 1969 gathering that rocked an entire culture--continues to recover and work her way back to full health, her legacy continues to unfold. Both in her own recordings and those of the numerous musicians throughout the decades she has inspired and influence, the latest tribute comes from R&B singer Chaka Khan, who has announced a tribute album to Mitchell.

Sanjay Dutt

Sanjay Dutt to be Released From Jail? >>

Bollywood is rallying around jailed actor Sanjay Dutt as he prepares for his release from jail February 27. Bollywood, as a whole, has long voiced its support for the actor and many have greeted the news of his early release wholeheartedly. Dutt, you may remember, was arrested in April 1993 for possessing two illegal firearms and he served time for that and was eventually granted bail. In 2007, the Indian Supreme court found him guilty of possessing arms relating to the 1993 Mumbai blast and they threw the book at him, sentencing the actor to five years hard labor.

Ranbir Kapoor

Ranbir Loves Charlie More Than Katrina. >>

Ranbir Kapoor's ex Deepika Padukone had no qualms about getting his name tattooed on the nape of her neck. It is the true sign of forever love, of giving your heart to a...Wait, Ranbir is her ex. So, basically, she carries around his name to remind her that he cheated on he? Luckily, they made up and tattoos are removable. Also, Deepika was quick on her feet and started dating the actor with the closest sounding name to Ranbir, the ever likable Ranveer. Given all this, it's a pretty safe bet that Ranbir Kapoor won't be getting Katrina Kaif's name tattooed anywhere on his being anytime soon,

Khatia

Khatia Buniatishvili Might Offend You >>

Everything about Khatia Buniatishvili perturbs some segment of the classical world in some way at some point. Is that a bad thing though? Why must we sit in our most formal attire watching similarly dressed people play similarly arranged music? Does that enhance Vaughn Williams' Concerto Grosso into the sublime? Does it make Antonín Dvořák's: Cello Concerto in B minor, third Movement rondeau crisper? After all, the music must not hold that much sway if Khatia\'s cleavage has your attention more than Antonin. But don't just look at her boobs. The critic from the Daily Telegraph is not. He was told that Georgians were nice sweet people and the banging Khatia was doing to poor Stravinsky's Petroucshka was tantamount to rape, to say nothing what it was doing to Lady Chatterly and the ideas it was putting in her head. Do you love classical music? If so, Khatia Buniatishvili will likely piss you off at some point.

Priyanka Chopra

Priyanka Chopra, The Wandering Nomad >>

Bollywood actress and star of the hit American TV show Quantico Priyanka Chopra says she wouldn't mind starring in Pakistani film. Of course, that is if the right story comes along. It appears Priyanka is developing a yen for all things Pakistani. What it was born from, no mention has been made. Chopra isn't doing this to promote a cause or anything like that. Indian and Pakastani differences are beyond her sphere of influence. If the countries are to make peace with each other, it is the governments of both countries that must lead, she feels.

Aamir Khan

Intolerant India Proves Aamir Correct >>

Looking for enlightened people? Yeah, you're probably not going to find them in India either. Sad as that is to say. The Goonj India Index 2015 reports that Aamir Khan is the most disliked Bollywood actor, coming in just behind two extremist Indian politicians. Recently, Khan came under fire for comments about intolerance in India. Khan, of Muslim faith, was being interviewed and spoke about the growing friction taking place in Indian society based solely on a person's faith. Naturally, people jumped to extreme conclusions.

Tampa Bay Rays

Tampa Bay Rays Dark Horse of the American League East >>

When the experts around baseball begin to convene together and try to make some sense of what happened in the off-season, generally what they come back with is largely predictable and you regret laying out the money you did for material you could have written in your sleep. This year will be no different, especially in the American League East. Boston's signing of David Price and the Yankees acquistion of fireballer Aroldis Chapman will see the Red Sox and Yankees shoot to top of the AL East, at least in the mind of the experts. Toronto's run in last year's playoff will give them the three spot, leaving Tampa Bay and the Baltimore Orioles to fight it out for the 4th and 5th spots. However, do not sleep on the Rays in 2016. They are going to surprise a lot of people.

Deepika Padukone

Could Deepika Padukone Become the Most Bankable Actress in the World? >>

Success follows Deepika Padukone around like a faithful dog. It remains at her side and hasn't left in a number of years. In 2015, Padukone took over Bollywood for the most part. Except for the pesky Salman Khan, who had two box office smashes and pulled a stunning magic trick by extracting himself out from under a five year prison sentence for his infamous 2002 hit and run accident. As for actresses, it's hard to come up with a comparable actress who has equaled Deepika the past couple of years. With the call to Hollywood nearing and a part in Vin Diesel's XXX sequel, the Queen of Bollywood will look to expand her kingdom. Can she become the most bankable actress in the world?

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