James Dean would follow Eartha Kitt anywhere! 1

Dance · Film · Music
Even to Katherine Dunham‘s dance class circa 1955 … but who wouldn’t? Eartha Kitt danced with the Dunham troupe from age 16 to 20, approximately, touring Europe, and becoming a cabaret sensation in Paris. James Dean, on the other hand … this great photo care of koolcatshipchicksblog. fabulous dunham historic photos here.

Duke Ellington’s polished “Satin Doll” 1

Music
Note the beat-up bass Aaron Bell solos on! Personnel: Ray Nance, Shorty Baker, Cat Anderson, Bill Berry, Ed Mullens (t), Lawrence Brown, Leon Cox, Chuck Connors (tb), Russell Procope, Johnny Hodges (as), Paul Gonsalves (ts), Jimmy Hamilton (cl, ts), Harry Carney (bars), Duke Ellington (p), Aaron Bell (b), Sam Woodyard (d). NYC, Jan 9, 1962. ...

Herb & Lani’s Latin-infused jazz at “Vibrato” 1

Music
“It’s what Miles said about me, which is really touching, ‘You hear three notes and you know it’s Herb Alpert.’ Well, you hear one note and you know it’s Miles. He won!” So says the modest and artistic Herb Alpert, musician, painter, sculptor, and arts philanthropist, at the end of an interview on a CBS morning program ...

Lorenz Hart taught Balanchine English 1

Dance · Language & ideas · Music
Chatting by phone with George Balanchine’s longtime assistant, Barbara Horgan, I learned an amusing story about the great expatriate choreographer. “Balanchine was rather reserved,” noted Horgan. “But he adored Lorenz Hart [the brilliant but troubled lyricist of Rodgers & Hart songwriting team]. “Balanchine always used to say that ‘Larry taught me how to speak English.'” ...

Happy 70th birthday, Captain Beefheart

Language & ideas · Music · Visual arts
Guitarist Gary Lucas‘s Captain Beefheart symposium was already in the works when he received a text message December 16 that Beefheart, aka Don Van Vliet, was no more. After years of suffering from multiple sclerosis, the enigmatic rock vocalist and musician, who had long forsaken music for painting, died at 69. Speaking to a theater ...

OCPAC reborn as Segerstrom Center for the Arts

Architecture & Design · Dance · Music · Theater · Visual arts
The erstwhile Orange County Performing Arts Center — Costa Mesa, California’s artistic mecca worthy of the 1.5- hour caravan southward from Los Angeles — entered a new era yesterday. In a burst of fireworks — $100,000 worth it is rumored — the center honored its founding patron Henry Segerstrom in a special way. Dropping its ...

Dance ambassador Lula Washington heads to Middle Kingdom 2

Dance · Music
A U.S. consulate representative’s positive feedback of a Vladivostok performance by Lula Washington Dance Theatre — they were in Russia in November and December on a 20-city tour — resulted in a six-figure grant in support of a visit to China for the ebullient Los Angeles-based dance troupe. The Washington-ites will visit Henan and its neighboring central ...

Ringing in 2011 at the Neujahrskonzert

Dance · Music
They’re gonna have to tie me into my seat when the Strauss waltzes kick in at this weekend’s Neujahrskonzert at Walt Disney Concert Hall. New Year’s concerts — famous, festive, and now franchised — are an old Austrian tradition. You know, like sacher tortes and California governors. [How did the Austrians come up with something ...

Sugarplum heart attack

Dance · Music
arts•meme thanks Lou Beach Like Pytor Illych? I love him. Read more: Ken Russell & Dr. Kildare tackle Tchaikovsky

Glendale’s Don Van Vliet, aka Captain Beefheart, dies

Music · Visual arts
Fine artist represented by Michael Werner gallery, New York & Köln. Van Vliet’s irrepressible California creativity captured in New York Times obituary — must reading. photo: anton corbijn