Tag Archives: Education

denim: 🥰 or ☹️ ???

Do you love denim?

Guess you could say I love the colour, but not the heavy fabric itself.

I’m all into soft and flowy fabrics. Perhaps part of my non-appreciation of denim is due to not seeing good quality denim fabric, but a lot of it is sheer ignorance. You can find anything on the web, but you gotta know what to look for, right?

So curiosity, and knowing I would get solid facts presented intelligently by women that know their fabrics had me listening to Love to Sew’s latest podcast on denim.

And I got all the info and links anticipated, plus a lovely surprise that had me looking at denim fabric, just out of curiosity, you understand… . . 😉

How long have I been a fan of Helen and Caroline, the hosts of Love to Sew? Probably not that long, considering they’ve been presenting a podcast a week for two years. HAPPY ANNIVERSARY ! ! ! 🥂 💐 But I’ve done a lot of listening to older podcasts, and have recommended some to friends, too.

The photo (she said we could use it) is Helen wearing a dress she refashioned in 2016 from three pairs of her partner’s old jeans. Her blog post details how she did it. Definitely a woman who knows her way around some denim!

But the best news for denim lovers is Caroline (who owns Blackbird Fabrics in Vancouver) is doing a Denim Drop tomorrow. Yep. FRIDAY! (Now you know why I went browsing. hehehehee!)

Earlier this summer I ordered a bit of non-denim lusciousness from Blackbird but am caught in August’s intense heat so haven’t made it up yet. Blackbird’s U.S. shipping is good, and all you lovelies in U.K. and beyond should check their rates before automatically turning away.

Blackbird is a Canadian shop, and they know how to make it all happen for sewers around the world. Their packaging is well thought out and recyclable.

See you Lovelies tomorrow at the sale?!

Edited Friday noon: Just checked out Blackbird and don’t see any label of major sale or new denim as yet… but there’s a 100% viscose that looks drapey interesting…

needed: inspiration

 

I took a break from work yesterday afternoon and spent an hour listening to current YouTube clips of Dame Eva Turner, British soprano absoluta.

Why? Because her “In questa regia” never fails to move me.

Listening to the glory of her  deep, rich sound, the resonant freedom of those high notes evident even in 1920‘s & 30‘s recording technology. . . always uplifts & refreshes me.

That’s what grand opera used to be all about.

Petite Dame Turner didn’t need deafening amplification, strobe lighting, or smoke. She did it with her vocal technique and her inspiration.

The secret in singing lies between the vibration in the singer’s voice and the throb in the hearer’s heart… Kahil Gibran

That’s communication beyond words.

one thing led to another, or tetrazzini in san francisco

A look around the trio of web sites from this prolific blogger reminded me of a story about a soprano singing on the streets of San Francisco over one hundred years ago.

Memory proved accurate, and I can now suggest another site for piccies next time she’s on Market Street with a camera.

Famed soprano Luisa Tetrazzini (1871 – 1940) loved San Francisco, and had a knack for creative programming. During a contractual dispute on New York City, she reportedly said, “I will sing in San Francisco if I have to sing there in the streets, for I know the streets of San Francisco are free.”

On Christmas Eve in 1910 she did just that.

To an audience of somewhere between 200,000 and 300,000 San Franciscans, she sang ~ no microphones in those days ~ for 30 minutes.  And was heard blocks away. The lady had technique. She had heart.

The concert also recognized the rebuilding of the city after the 1906 earthquake. Her final song was “Auld Lang Syne.”

From all I could gather, the bronze plaque commemorating that concert is still attached to Lotta’s Fountain, on Market at Geary & Kearney.

An artist who used her art to help heal a city.

References include:

More reading at Project Gutenberg:

establishing rapport

José Carreras
José Carreras
click for photo source
Plácido_Domingo click for photo source
Plácido_Domingo
click for photo source

Luciano_Pavarotti_15.06.02_cropped

 

Was reading over at Uncle Spike’s blog, and came across his Nessun Dorma post, which immediately reminded me of a video with more behind-the-scenes details.

Wonder of wonders, and perhaps because it’s still only available in VHS, the entire piece is available on-line here.

I guess the 58-minute video is too large for wordpress to upload. My apologies for making you click over to watch, but please do. It’s well worth it!

It shows the original three tenors meeting for the first time,  discussing possible repertoire, clowning & rehearsing with conductor Zubin Mehta – long before they rehearsed with  orchestra. It also details some of the obstacles event producer Mario Dradi had to surmount.

Event producers, be aware of those details. And of how many rehearsal hours were scheduled with these four hugely successful artists.

Was their rapport infectious? Yes. Why?  Those maaany hours of rehearsals, besides lifetimes of study and performing.

Don’t think it can be equalled without those rehearsal hours!

further reading

Tavis Smiley: Talking with musicians

Mr. Tavis Smiley, courtesy tavistalks.com
click to go to web site

Mr. Tavis Smiley: …  the reason why I love music artists is that you get the most authentic conversations with them…  Because what’s in them typically comes out in one way, shape, or form.

From Mr. Smiley’s interview with Mr. Ben Harper and Mr. Charlie Musselwhite earlier this month.

Au*then”tic, a. [OE. autentik, OF. autentique, F. authentique, L. authenticus coming from the real author, of original or firsthand authority…] 1. Having a genuine original or authority, in opposition to that which is false, fictitious, counterfeit, or apocryphal; being what it purports to be; genuine; not of doubtful origin; real; as, an authentic paper or register…

montalbano: internationally successful

actor Luca Zingaretti from wikipedia click to go to article
actor Luca Zingaretti
from wikipedia
click to go to article

If you haven’t seen Detective Montalbano, try looking around your local telly channels.  In the U.S., MHz stations frequently include it as part of  their international mystery series.

The opportunity to watch and learn from a meticulously crafted ensemble of performers, both behind and before the camera, is invaluable to anyone involved in the performing arts.  And the music is great!

Now there are 2 hours of videos on how it’s done, led by insights from actor Luca Zingaretti (Montalbano).

Series viewer caution:  This is an Italian television series.  Some viewers may find portions objectionable.

Conversation with Luca Zingaretti (45 min)  A subtitled in-depth conversation with Luca Zingaretti on theatre and screen acting, the importance of one’s soul, the character of Montalbano, and much more.

Detective Montalbano – Making Montalbano (27 min)  From the director’s point of view.

Detective Montalbano – From Page to Screen (29 min) From other artists behind the scenes.

Detective Montalbano – True Sicilians (24 min)  The Sicilian supporting actors add immeasurably to the overall production.

opera or ?

so what makes an opera singer these days?

let’s talk vintage!

used to be an opera singer’s voice would/could fill an auditorium seating 4,000 plus, and float over an orchestra with no microphone.  just their trained understanding and use of the human body’s natural resonance. along with a bazillion other minor details.

anybody every heard a newborn cry?  instant attention for a quarter mile, right?  wonder how??

anne midgette, musical critical & writer for the ny times and washington post did a handy dandy little audio about this very thing for the times.

in a brief 4 minutes she explains & gives 2 examples of just one factor involved.

have a listen.

(Audio, MP3 format)

if above got you thinking, you can read more here.

singing is healthy

here’s an article from last july’s los angeles times about more research into music’s special effects. it seems music, and singing in particular, can have specific health benefits.

“The new research… is the latest to explore the health benefits of making music.”

i’m not a doctor, but i know what students have told me for decades: “you’ve done it again.”  done what?  “i came dragging in here, and i’m leaving feeling great.”

mission accomplished.

Ballet, Costume, Art, Music & Paris

Big exhibit opening this Sunday at Washington, D.C.’s National Gallery of Art, centering on Ballets Russes, including an extensive selection of film, lectures, performances of music and dance, and some costumes on display. Some details & reviews below.  Exhibit runs 12 May to 2 Sept 2013.