A WASTE OF TALENT
BIG LITTLE LIES on HBO is an embarrassing soap-opera that was dropped on Monterey without any connection to its culture or history. Reading the local press coverage of the series I couldn’t imagine how their reporters could possibly take themselves seriously. Talented Reese Witherspoon, Laura Dern, Nicole Kidman and others in the cast suffer from an insufferably cheap screenplay that none of them can rescue. HBO has offered some outstanding fare, recently including The Young Pope, a snarky, surreal, Felliniesque satire. Big Little Lies isn’t in the same league.
WIES NORBERG, 1933-2017
MUSIC WAS HER LIFE. Wies published weekly Wies’ Notes, a newsletter of local musicians, mostly jazz, though she could often be seen at classical events. Earlier this month she suffered a major stroke. I visited her at a care facility about a week later, found her in good cheer but she told me that this was her end. Wies died last Wednesday afternoon.
MAGGIE FINNEGAN, a Pacific Grove native, joins the Camerata Singers as soprano soloist in three performances this week of John Rutter’s popular and haunting Requiem. The annual Jazz Bash by the Bay descends on Monterey this weekend at multiple venues. Masked Acts, an Indonesian “dance drama” with gamelan music opens in the Mainstage Theater at UC Santa Cruz. For details and links, click our CALENDAR
WHO ALSO WROTE SHAKESPEARE?
AFTER ALL he was not the only genius of his generation. Does he justify being reinvented? Click HERE
BALLS, THE BILLIE JEAN KING OPERA
COMPOSER LAURA KARPMAN talks about her opera, inspired by the legendary 1973 tennis match in which Billie Jean King took down Bobby Riggs. Click HERE
WHO’S THE BAD GUY
SOMETIMES EVEN REAL CRITICS get it blazingly wrong. So explores Joseph Luzzi in The Chronicle of Higher Education. Click HERE
THE WINDOWS WALTZ
WHERE CLASSICAL MUSIC AUDIENCES ARE GETTING YOUNGER
A POST IN La Repubblica says that Italians are bucking the “Zimmer-frame” trend. Classical record sales are up 20 percent. Rome is staging classical raves. Naples sells opera tickets for 7 Euros to the under-30s. La Fenice [in Venice] is showing an 11% increase in under-40 online ticket buyers. Classical is looking sexy once again.
DEAR LIAR at Monterey Museum of Art. Click HERE
YOUTH MUSIC MONTEREY plays Scheherazade in Carmel. Click HERE
Scott MacClelland, editor; Rebecca RC Brooks, associate editor