Dec 302007
Book Review: “Zugzwang”and the Pleasures of Chess Noir

By Harvey Blume Zugzwang,by Ronan Bennett (Bloomsbury USA, 288 pages) It’s an understatement to say chess has been good for literature; the game has even inspired people not known for the written word to produce memorable prose. Consider the following, [...]

Dec 282007
Theater Commentary: Who’s Afraid of the Antiwar Play?

by Bill Marx What particularly disappointed Boston Globe theater critic Louise Kennedy about the Huntington Theatre Company’s recent production of David Rabe’s Streamers was that it lacked the emotional impact of the 1976 staging of the script. She found it [...]

Dec 272007
Music Review: Becoming Coltrane: Part One

By J. R. Carroll This review/commentary will focus on Coltrane’s recordings with the Miles Davis Quintet for Columbia (in October 1955 and June and September 1956) and Prestige (in November 1955 and May and October 1956), as well as a [...]

Dec 212007
Composer Steve Reich, Or The More Less the Better

By William Webster New Yorker music critic Alex Ross’ recent positive review of a concert featuring the compositions of Steve Reich at New York’s Carnegie Hall made me look forward to the presentation of the same program at Boston’s New [...]

Dec 112007
Opera Review: ‘Summer and Smoke’

By Caldwell Titcomb The operas of Lee Hoiby don’t come around often, but the best known of his seven stage works is Summer and Smoke, based on the play by Tennessee Williams. I still vividly remember the 1952 New York [...]

Dec 092007
Fuse Flash: Cabal? What Cabal? Pollock Experts Move in Small Circles

Only months ago, developments in the Pollock Matter controversies made news around the world (See past Fuse Flash and Anonymous Sources). But the Nov. 28 International Foundation for Art Research [IFAR] symposium, “Are They Pollocks? What Science Tells Us About [...]