Pictures: American Art in Early Film
ambitious exhibition, opening Saturday at the Williams College
Museum of Art, examines the relationship between American
art and cinema at the dawn of the 20th century.
It’s ambitious because it pulls together artworks and film
from so many different sources, including MoMA, the National
Gallery, Boston’s Museum of Fine Arts and the Whitney, and
because it’s such a difficult and tricky proposition, considering
the grotesquely high percentage of early American cinema
that no longer exists. The exhibition will include 100 works
and 50 films, “installed side-by-side on the gallery walls
to highlight the extraordinary relationship between the
two media.” On the “art” side, there are plenty of names
you’ll recognize, like Mary Cassatt and John Singer Sargent.
Some of the creators of early cinema are less familiar—like,
say, W.K.L. Dickson—but are equally relevant.
Pictures: American Art in Early Film opens Saturday
(July 16) and continues through Dec. 11 at the Williams
College Museum of Art (15 Lawrence Hall Drive, Williamstown,
Mass.). For more info, call (413) 597-2429 or visit the
museum’s Web site at www.wcma.org.
Up Is Hard to Do
boomers must be feeling some kind of dislocation. (And we
should know, as a couple of us are baby boomers.) For years
they were the kings and queens of American consumer culture,
but that is so over. Popular music has passed them
by; TV networks consider their demographic too old; the
second boomer president turned out to be more of a reactionary
than his WW II-vet dad; and Paul McCartney’s alleged facelift
made him look like an old woman. Fear not, however, dear
boomers. The theater still cares about your needs.
Starting tonight, Capital Repertory Theatre will present
the world-premiere musical Breaking Up Is Hard to Do.
Based on the sprightly songs of Brill Building mainstay
Neil Sedaka, this ultra-friendly production is set at a
Catskills resort in the summer of 1959. While of course
there was that Cold War/fear-of-nuclear-annihilation
thing in the air, there was also a real sense of innocence:
Kindly old Ike was in the White House, American Bandstand
was on every afternoon, and girls (and boys) just wanted
to have fun. You know, like in Dirty Dancing.
The score is rich with Sedaka’s easily-identifiable tunes.
These include his own hits (“Breaking Up Is Hard to Do,”
“Happy Birthday Sweet Sixteen,” “Calendar Girl”), and the
songs made hits by other performers (“Love Will Keep Us
Together,” “Where the Boys Are.”) Not a bad soundtrack for
a little nostalgic fun, is it?
Up is Hard to Do will be presented by Capital Repertory
Theatre (111 N. Pearl St., Albany) beginning tomorrow (Friday,
July 15) through Aug. 14. There is a special pay-what-you-will
preview tonight (Thursday, July 14) at 7:30 PM; tickets
(limit four per customer) go on sale at 6 PM. Previews start
tomorrow and continue through Tuesday (July 19), and the
grand-opening night is Wednesday (July 20). For tickets
and schedule information, call the Capital Rep box office
Bruce Springsteen takes the stage at the Pepsi Arena this
Saturday, he’ll be just one man in front of thousands. That
has to be just a bit uncomfortable—with the E Street Band,
he at least has a few (like, eight) other folks to cover
his ass. But then the Boss’ current acoustic tour is a lot
different from the globetrotting two-year jaunt he and the
E Streeters embarked on a few years back. The solo thing
is in keeping with Springsteen’s latest release, Devils
& Dust, a set that has critics raving and fans scratching
their heads. Nothing new there: As a follow-up to The
River, 1982’s sparse and excellent Nebraska alienated
many fans, and The Ghost of Tom Joad barely registered
on the pop-culture radar upon its release in ’96. But, if
nothing else, the man bounces back: 1984’s Born in the
USA sold 15 million copies to Nebraska’s one
million, and the Mellencampian Rising (2001) was
a blockbuster in comparison to Tom Joad—so don’t
be surprised if we get another flag-waving, fist-pumping
epic out of him soon.
Bruce Springsteen will perform—solo—at the Pepsi Arena (51
S. Pearl St., Albany) on Saturday (July 16). As of press
time, some upper-level tickets—priced at $76—were still
available for the 8 PM show. Contact Ticketmaster at 476-1000
for tickets (they’re not available through the Pepsi’s box
office), or call the arena for more information (487-2000).