2 comments to Robin Williams’ “eclectic celebration of the dance” in “The Birdcage”
Thank you for that! I had just watched dear Robin Williams’ brilliant display the other day. Meeting a friend’s dog, Fosse, inspired me to YouTube.
I thought you might also like this remembrance of all things scandale…..Jacaranda music’s May 20 concert will include Terry Riley’s ‘Olson III,’ whose premiere caused a near-riot. That, of course, reminded me of “Le Sacre du Printemps” premiere. So I had to look up what I’d written for the LA Times a decade or so about a now defunct OC museum’s exhibit of Nijinksy memorabilia:
“While Nijinsky’s ballets are now considered to have foreshadowed pivotal developments of avant garde choreography, they were rejected during his time. The 1913 Paris premiere of “Le Sacre du Printemps,” set to Igor Stravinsky’s equally anti-classical yet seminal score, still stands as ballet’s grandest fracas, replete with hissing, catcalls, fistfights and tiaras atilt.
“All the elements of a scandal were present,” Cocteau wrote. “The smart audience in tails and tulle, diamonds and ospreys, was interspersed with the suits and bandeaux of the aesthetic crowd. The latter would applaud novelty simply to show their contempt for the people in the boxes.”
And I found this wonderful bit online, courtesy of Drury University:
The Birth of Le Sacre du Printemps: It was a Scandal of the kind that Paris loved!
Who wrote this fiendish Rite of Spring,
What right had he to write the thing,
Against our helpless ears to fling
Its crash, cling, clang, bing, bang, being?
And then to call it ‘Rite of Spring’
The season when on joyous wing
The birds harmony’s in everything!
He who would write the Rite of Spring
If I be right, by right should swing!
- Boston Herald, after local premiere
Of course it is the writer of this memorable couplet who is swinging in the breeze of history, known only for his poem.
Los Angeles is bursting with fine art and performance -- plus the best big-screen film viewing in the world. I cover the cultural beat on the Los Angeles Times and The Huffington Post. I mix it up on arts·meme, a fine arts blog.