A light-hearted look at Passover–CHOZEN.

http://elitedaily.com/humor/introducing-chozen-passover-frozen-tribute-every-jew-will-want-play-sedar-video/

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Starbucks in Great Neck Shopping Center on Great Neck Road should be called Blow Your Bucks

This is the Starbucks island in the Garden shopping center in Great Neck. Look at how filthy the island is. Garbage hanging out and if you could feel how sticky the counter is and see the grains of sugar and who knows what else spewed all over, and the tables you have to clean yourself, you’d be so disappointed. The manager claims it’s just because they were short-handed, but this is always a problem. They came in, gobble up all their coffee shop competitors, and now look what you get! Sure wish it would be as good as all the other Starbucks I’ve gone to anywhere else. 2014-04-09_15-56-38_779

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BULLETS OVER BROADWAY now at the Saint James Theater

Remember Woody Allen’s 1994 movie about an idealistic young playwright desperate for a backer for his next show who agrees to cast a mobster’s moll as the lead in order to get the moolah? All good, right? The playwright is happy. The mobster has assuaged his moll. But bang, bang, there are BULLETS OVER BROADWAY, and now they actually ring out on Broadway with the songs that made the Roaring Twenties roar.

BULLETS OVER BROADWAY features Brooks Ashmanskas (The Producers), Emmy Award winning and Golden Globe Nominee Zach Braff (Scrubs, Garden State), Nick Cordero (Rock of Ages), Tony and Drama Desk Award nominee Marin Mazie (Passion, Ragtime), Vincent Pastore (The Sopranos), Bestsy Wolpe (The Drowsy Chaperone), Helen York (Grease), and Tony-Award-winning Karen Ziemba (Contact), among an ensemble cast of 29.

Cheech, (Nick Cordero), the gangster who makes the best-ever edits on the play and even takes steps to, shall we say, rearrange the cast, gives a standout performance that had all the ladies on line for the ladies room, abuzz.

BULLETS OVER BROADWAY began previews on March 11th and opens officially on Thursday, April 10th, 2014.

THE ST. JAMES THEATER: 246 W. 44th St., NY 10036

website: www.bulletsoverbroadwaythemusical.com 

BULLETSOVERBROADWAY850x315_v2

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JEAN BAPTISTE CARPEAUX, (1827-1875) SCULPTURES AND PAINTINGS AT THE MET

To find an artist you never head of before and have his work etch itself into your mind is a thrilling experience. Carpeaux knew how to capture emotion. Looking at his marble reliefs of the Old Testament, I found myself getting worked all over again about Cain slewing Abel, about Abraham being ready to kill his son, Isaac, to prove his faith. I am also ready to return to Dante’s Inferno where Count Ugolino earned his place in the realm of political traitors for a series of betrayals against Pisa and it’s political leadership. He, his sons, and two grandsons were held in a tower for eight months and then it was decided that the door should be nailed shut, the keys thrown in the Arno, to let them starve to death. Carpeaux’s sculpture of Ugolino eating his own hand and his sons begging to let him eat them instead is the stuff of nightmares.

But the pieces that actually interested me most were the sketches he made, whether in clay or watercolor or pencil. He walked around with paints and wet clay in his pockets. “It’s in the street that we learn our art,” Carpeaux said.  Attn: Writers, always carry a notebook!

Jean-Baptiste_Carpeaux's_marble_sculpture_'Ugolino_and_his_Sons',_Metropolitan_Museum_of_Art

 

 

 

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ERNEST AND CELESTINE, A CLASSIC CARTOON FOR ALL AGES

I don’t know about you, but I’m so tired of taking my young grandkids to cartoon that have toucans or penguins shaking their booties, making suggestive remarks. And I want children’s book illustrations to look more like Winnie the Pooh or Beatrice Potter’s tales instead of the unsentimental graphics that have taken over. Ernest and Celestine is what I’ve longed for–beautiful watercolors come to life. Below the cobblestone streets lives hardworking mice who are terrified of the bears living above ground. The bears, in turn, are terrified of being overrun by mice.  Celestine, unlike her fellow mice, is an artist and dreamer who almost is eaten by Ernest, a starving street musician beggar-bear. Their friendship ends up pitting them against their own kind and landing them in prison until their heroism and loyalty to each other causes the bears and the mice to face their prejudice. Funny, charming,. Winner of the Cesar Award and nominee for an Oscar. ernest_hires1 Wait until you hear Lauren Bacall’s voice. And Forest Whitaker does make a great bear.

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TERRENCE MCNALLY’S MOTHERS AND SONS at Broadway’s JOHN GOLDEN THEATER

mothersandsonsImagine that the mother of a former lover who died stops by your apartment unexpectedly to give you her dead son’s diary, which neither of you want because it feels too private and too painful to read. And now imagine that this mother’s son, a twenty-nine year old actor has died of AIDS in the 80′s, and she not only blames his lover for “making him gay,” but also believes that this man has put her son at risk for AIDS. And here she comes, newly widowed, looking for a scapegoat for her considerable rage, and finds out her son’s lover now has a husband and a son and is happily married in the era when this is possible. What fodder for fire-cracking drama! Continue reading

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EVERYONE IS HAUNTED BY SOMETHING

Check out my blog post on UNDERCOVER SOUND TRACK that hails from Ebngland about what hauntsKG_250pixels you and the inspiration for art of any kind.

http://mymemoriesofafuturelife.com/2014/03/19/the-undercover-soundtrack-rochelle-jewel-shapiro/

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THE GRAND BUDAPEST HOTEL–A FAIRY TALE FOR ADULTS

From the director of the wacky Moonrise Kingdom comes an even zanier story about the adventures of a legendary concierge *Ralph Fiennes) at a famous hotel between the wars, and the lobby boy, Zero Mustafa (newcomer Tony Rvolori) who becomes his best friend. I don’t want to add the rest of the cast because it’s so much fun coming upon the actors in costume and wondering–who is that? I know the voice. Hmm. But the cast must have been dying to work together because practically no one could have paid so many top stars for one film.

It begins with the fictional author (Tom Wilkinson) talking about writing. He says that readers think that writers use their vast imaginations for stories. Instead, if a writer stops to listen, the stories come to him, just begging to be told. GrandBudapestHotel

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ANYTHING CAN HAPPEN AT THE BROOKLYN BOTANICAL GARDENS

This photo was taken of my husband and I as we walked through The Brooklyn Botanical Gardens on Sunday. A young woman took our picture and then asked for my email to send it to us. I was reluctant. Everyone is running scams. But I gave her an email that I barely used and received this wonderful photo along with an invitation to join her evangelical church. I thanked her profusely for the photo. 1-IMG_0254

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DELICATE EDIBLE BIRDS and other stories by Lauren Groff

DELICATE EDIBLE BIRDS and other stories

51LMRgt-dtL._BO2,204,203,200_PIsitb-sticker-arrow-click,TopRight,35,-76_SX342_SY445_CR,0,0,342,445_SH20_OU03_Lauren Groff

Hyperion, 2009

206 pp.

ISBN-13: 978-1400160709

Okay, so the book isn’t brand new, but when you stumble upon an author who entrances you, who cares when the book came out?

Lauren Groff, author of critically acclaimed and bestselling Monsters of Templeton, has given us the gift of this resonant book of short stories, each an insightful drama of a twentieth century woman.

She writes stories that are both achingly real and mythic. In Lucky Chow Fun, the first story, a shocker taking place in the small Midwestern town of Templeton refers to fairy tale within the telling of the tale, and it’s never intrusive. “Fairy tales,” she writes, “are not like real life in all its beautiful ambiguity. There are no semigod absent mothers. Or, for that matter, semipresent good ones.

The youngest daughter in this story has OCD, and fixed on ornithology. Every writer knows how challenging  it is to write onomatopoeia. Well, Poll, the younger girl, has figured out how to do birdsong in words.  “Hurry, flurry, blurry, worry,” is the scarlet tanager’s song. The Eastern Towhee’s song is “hot dog, pickle, ickle, ickle.”

No use in my telling you about each story. Read them. In each, there’s so much to learn beyond the stories edges. Other worlds to open to.

http://www.amazon.de/Delicate-Edible-Birds-Other-Stories/dp/1400160707

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