Tag Archives: Sophia Loren

New York City Blog — Dec. 14 – Dec. 17

Standing in line, hoping we’d get in, we got the last two seats in MOMA’s Theater 3 for Big Deal on Madonna Street. Its Italian title is I Soliti Ignoti (The Usual Suspects ). It was directed by Mario Monicelli and had a stellar cast: Vittorio Gassman, Marcello Mastrioanni, Toto, (the beloved Neopolitan wise guy of Italian movies), Renato Salvatori, Claudia Cardinale. And, of course, post-war Rome. The movie dates from 1958 and shows the urban poor scrabbling to survive in gritty Rome. Italy had an awful war: a maelstrom of individual bravery, stoicism, ridicule, suffering, fleeing. and famine. In I Soliti Ignoti there’s a scene in which the inept thieves gobble food they’ve discovered in the house they’re burglarizing. It reminded me of Sophia Lorne eating ravinously in the 1960 masterpiece, Two Women set in the time of World War 2.

Pouring out of a packed, usually quiet restaurant, on Thursday night we went to Carnegie Hall. The NYC buzz was in high gear. Joyce DiDonato, the mezzo soprano, presented In War and Peace: Harmony through Music. As we entered the Hall, we saw Ms. DiDonato sitting stationary on the stage, so still that I thought she was a statue. In addition to her singing there was interpretive dancing by Manuel Palazzo. As light designs shimmered across the stage, Ms. DiDonato, representing War and Peace, sang sections, from among others, Handel and Purcell. Her question to the enthusiastic audience was, In the midst of chaos, how do you find peace?

Joyce DiDonato: In War & Peace:Harmony Through Music






Graphic Lessons: Recent widow Millie Fitzgerald applies for a private school teaching job, faints on a stabbed and dying man, deals with the only witness to the stabbing, a troubled nine year old, befriends a lying seventeen year old, develops a crush on a NYPD detective and her dog dies.

New York City Blog May 25 — May 31

A friend and I wended our way from the Gagosian Gallery’s Michael Heizer’s exhibit to the Highline and down the stairs and across Ninth Avenue to cocktails and dinner at the Tipsy Parson. Stuffed eggs, mac and cheese and delicious red wine always aid great conversation.

Michael Heizer's Altars
Michael Heizer’s Altars

Coypel’s Don Quixote Tapestries closed at the Frick Collection with Frick movie night. Staff and volunteers were invited to the Music Room to see a screening of the Man of La Mancha. it was based on the Cervantes eighteenth-century novel that no one reads. Lyrics were borrowed from the Broadway production. In spite of the fact that the late Roger Ebert gave the 1972 movie only two and a half stars, it was lots of nostalgic fun. Big names from that era include Peter O’Toole, Sophia Loren, and Ian Richardson playing a young, idealist priest. Many years later in BBC’s House of Cards, Richardson played, brilliantly, a corrupt politician who flung his mistress off the roof of the houses of parliament.

For the past week the Joyce Theater has been a shine to Wendy Whalen. Two other acolytes and I went on bended knee and broken check book to Restless Creature: four dances choreographed and danced by Ms. Whalen and Alejandro Cerrudo, Joshua Beamish, Kyle Abraham and Brian Brooks. It was a rare treat watching a great dancer, supported by other great dancers, at the Joyce, which doesn’t have a bad seat in the house.