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We’ve had a lovely afternoon and evening at the American Conservation Film Festival.

We are in the four day period of the ACFF, now celebrating it’s 10th Anniversary of presenting conservation and nature support films here in Shepherdstown.

We saw two films this afternoon, but tonight we saw two films accompanied by live discussions and question periods with the filmmakers.

The most interesting to me was Marion Stoddart whose life and career spent saving the Nashua River was so well presented in the short film “The Work of 1000.”

Filmmaker Susan Edwards broached the subject Can one person truly make a difference? This film tells the inspiring story of how a remarkable woman saved a dying river–for herself, for the community and for future generations–and became an environmental hero honored by the United Nations.

Mrs Stoddart, now in her 80s spent decades getting a very polluted river clean… petitioning, demonstrating, approaching manufacturers and politicians directly, and getting her husband and children involved. Her live presentation with the audience was very involving.

Our Nation’s River: A System on Edge  was the second film we saw this evening. Ten minutes long and made by Alexandra Cousteau, granddaughter of historic natural filmmaker Jaques Costeau. This piece was particularly meaningful for us, since it is about the Potomac River, the water body that forms our northern border and flows from us down to Washington DC.

Ms, Cousteau answered questions but also presented a discussion panel of professionals from the Nature Conservancy and the Potomac River Foundation.

The House was pretty full at Reynolds Hall, Shepherd University, with a number of standers who wanted to catch everything as well. Among the folks there tonight were most of the officers of Sustainable Shepherdstown (My wife is in that bunch, of course), our current State Delegate John Dolan whose work for us has been spectacular and who is leaving office at the end of the session. Steve Skinner, the Democratic candidate for Delegate who, hopefully, will take John’s place, was there as well. Both men realize the importance the Potomac is to our community. Of course, Republican Candidate Elliot Spitzer was NOT there this evening. Preserving our environment is just not a Republican issue… after all, don’t they all think that Climate Change is a joke?

We’re going to some more films tomorrow.

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My radio show is short and earlier today…

Shepherd University is loaded with alumni this weekend and there is a home football game which is covered on WSHC starting at 11 AM. That means that my show, Talk To Me, is only 1 hour long and starts at 10 AM.

I’m putting my short list of songs on my playlist now and that will keep me from blog posting until I’m back home after 10 AM.

If you want to listen at 10, but are outside of the fifty mile or so tuning radius for 89.7, you can listen live on the WSHC  web site:

http://897wshc.org. When you get there, click on “Listen Live”.

What is the potential of the youth vote in the election?

 

It’s a pretty substantial 20%… the question is will they show up? Here’s the demographics:

Here in the Shepherd University area where we see an awful lot of the youth category daily, we are curious as to how involved students are getting in the campaigns. From what I see it is minimal at best.

How is it where you are? Does it look like we will surpass the 2008 election or fall below it’s total of young voters? We’ll have to wait and see.

 

My life has changed… not for the better, I’m afraid

Following my radio show this morning, I’m sitting over at Mellow Moods having coffee while I wait for my friend Cecil to pick me up

He’s over at  workshop at the Contemporary American Theater Festival and are schedules our slightly skewed.

This not being able to drive, what I have been condemned to since my accident, stands a real possibility of going on for the rest of my life. If I were in a city with public transportation to everything going on, it would be one thing, but I’m a few miles out of town in an empty, rural neighborhood where walking to anything is out of the question and there are no buses or anything else.

I’m dependent on family and friends to go out, can no longer do the grocery shopping, which I enjoyed, and, basically I feel trapped. The internet is my only way out, so you, dear blog readers, are now my connection to the world. I enjoy hearing from you whether you agree with me or not.

Think I’ll go buy another cup of coffee while it becomes 102° outside.

Scarborough Library Follies

Todd and John setting up the remote studio

John and I broadcast Winners and Losers from Shepherd University‘s Scarborougfh Library this morning, adding an extra hour to our regular show. Todd Cotsgreave, our Station Manager, spent close to two days setting up the equipment, testing it and getting rerady for the broadcast, for which we express great thanks.

I was really struck by the signs and posters they had outside of the Library building and all over the inside that showed John and me broadcasting (pictures swiped from this blog going back quite a ways).

We interviewed members of the Library staff, program directors, student volunteers and Lisa Welch from the Film Society (movie tonight, btw – George Clooney ‘s Good Night and Good Luck). It was all set up by the Library Dean and we even had a mini breakfast and coffee for all attendees.

It all worked out pretty well and we’ll probably do it again in 6 months or so.

Everything is behind today… I’m walking an uneasy line…

This is how I feel...

I was supposed to be at WSHC at 7:30 this morning to cover for John Case until 9:00 AM, but somehow I missed the alarm and slept too late… and if Ralph Petrie hadn’t called at 8:30 to see where John was I never would have gotten in.

At 7:55 I was on the air and my regular callers (especially Ralph, whose birthday is today… Happy Birthday, Ralph) started ringing in. I held the show an extra half hour to make up for the lateness.

I had a therapist’s appointment a little later… then I got home, fed the dogs and, dammit, fell asleep until 4:00 PM. Now I’m getting a really late start on my house packing and kitchen cleaning, etc.

We’re supposed to be trucking the furniture and boxes to the new house on Saturday and Sunday. We’ll never make it!

And I’ve got to be on with John at 7:30 tomorrow morning.

Two weeks of moving start today…

Elly and Me?

We closed on our “farmette” on Friday, and now we will spend the next two weeks moving, emptying the townhouse and getting it ready for sale (say, are you looking for a nice townhouse in Shepherdstown, WV? Let me know.)

Home for Chicks

The thought of entering a life as somewhat of a farmer has been entering my consciousness as I plan to repair the very old chicken house on the property so we can go out in April (or earlier) to get a dozen or so live chicks. Sure looking forward to eggs by the end of the summer.

If this makes the blog come out at odd times of the day in the next week or so (no internet connected to the new house yet) then we will have to live with it.

Take a break…

A wonderful film for a Wednesday Night:

The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore from Moonbot Studios on Vimeo.

This has been nominated for a short film Academy Award and I think it is surely worth it. Make sure to watch it at full screen.

Have a great time… more fun than watching politicians.
For those of you who are my radio listeners I’ll be on WSHC (89.7 FM) tomorrow morning from 7:30 AM to 9:00 AM substituting for John Case(on the web at http://www.897wshc.org).

A Great Night At “Sweeney Todd”

We went to see Sondheim’s  Sweeney Todd at Shepherd University last night and were treated to a really wonderful performance.

I’m always amazed by the professional quality of performance that comes from the Shepherd music students.. great voices, convincing characters and exciting choreography.

You’re not allowed to photograph the performance, but I took a quick shot of the set during the intermission with my iPhone:

Sorry for the quality… I was trying to pretend I was making a phone call while I took the picture… didn’t want to get arrested or dragged off to the audience jail hidden under the stage.

The show is running this afternoon at 3:00 PM and then next week on Friday, saturday nights and Sunday matinee. Then it’s over. If you get the chance, go to see it. No reservations at the Frank Center, but it is a very big house and we’ve never missed getting a seat there.

It’s well worth the trip (we went over in the middle of one of the rare snowstorms this winter.)

Great Responsibilities tonight at Shepherdstown Film Society…

Elly and I volunteered to turn out the houselights and do the head count at Shepherdstown Film Society tonight at 7:00 (Reynolds Hall at Shepherd U. – FREE). The film is Atlantic City with Burt Lancaster,,,one I haven’t seen in a couple of decades.

That means we can’t go to the opening of Sweeney Todd, also at Shepherd U. We’ll have to go on second night tomorrow.

_____

We finished the official inspection of our new house this afternoon… also got a quote on the deck we’re building in the back… now we have to wait for the bank and the lawyer to engineer the closing. After that we’ll get Dave, our fix-up guy, to put in a couple of days correcting the faults found in the inspection.

I’ll also have to pick up two rolls of welded wore fencing and the steel stakes to put in the dog fence for Nestle and Byron.

___

Radio show on WSHC (89.7 in Shepherdstown, http://www.897WSHC.org around the world. 11:AM to 1:PM.

Almost time for my Saturday radio show…

I’m in the outer studio at WSHC FM getting my playlist ready for the 11 AM show (we’re up until 1:00 PM.) The station is 89.7 for those of you within 50 miles or so from Shepherd University (our owner) and on the internet at http://www.897wshc.org. Feel free to tune in… or call in at 304- 876- 5369.

We’re probably going to talk about some of the dreadful things Newt and

Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street

Mitt have been hurling at each other in Florida this week, among other things. Also, there is a production of Sweeney Todd opening next week at Shepherd, which I’m looking forward to… so they’ll be a little theatre discussion.

I expect that Ralph, Mark or Stu or some other of our regulars will be calling in as well. I also have my usual eclectic mix of music.

Have a nice day… I’m signing off for a couple of hours.

Sitting in the radio station after crawling through ice to get in.

Thank goodness for 4-wheel drive. Fortunately they had already plowed King St. and I could park quite close to WSHC‘s studio in Kunicke Hall.

There’s about 2 inches of snow layered with a half inch of ice.  It took me a few minutes to scrape my car off, but it looks like the worst is probably over. The Weather Bureau says the temperature will go above freezing and we’ll have a little light rain and then overcast sun later this afternoon. Can’t wait.

Given the weather, I’m not sure if any of my regular walk-in guests will be on “Talk To Me” today. Hopefully folks will call in to 304-876-5369 and say hello.

The internet is up, so if you’re not in the Shepherdstown, WV, area you can tune in at http://897wshc.org. I’ll be on from 11AM until 1 PM ET.

Since it’s a great day to stay inside and snuggle up with your sweetie take advantage of it. There has been so little winter this year that this is almost like a vacation.

Are you ever too old to be creative?

Although it is Friday the thirteenth, this may be an unusually lucky day for me. I’m sitting over in Mellow Moods with John Case (post our 7:30 – 9:00 AM radio show on WSHC) where we are meeting on a proposed revision of Clifford OdetsWaiting for Leftywhich we are framing

CraftWorks

inside the Occupy Movement. With music, yet.

Later this morning I have an appointment at CraftWorks over in Charles Town WV where they are looking for a part-time guy with arts administration experience (like me) who’s willing to be paid for ten hours at a low rate but actually work for twenty or thirty. A retired guys’ dream. I hope I do well at the interview… had a good conversation with their Director yesterday.

A Lubalin Masterpiece

I started getting interested in doing some type-oriented graphic design work, something I haven’t really done since the U-Design years in Hartford. One way to get inspired for that is to ramble through the works of my favorite graphic designer, Herb Lubalin. He’s been dead for three decades now (he died on MY BIRTHDAY, May 24), but many of his designs and logos are still being used and much of his work will live forever.rpiece

Bradley Sanders

I get such a thrill out of seeing what Lubalin did with type (he’s one of the reasons I started designing typefaces in the 80s… Avant Garde kicked me over the edge when I saw what letters could do when they interact.)  I’m going to work on a couple of experimental pieces… one supporting my Saturday show on WSHC… then see if any of the local non-profits are willing to giver me a try.

I saw Bradley Sanders of the Folly when John and I came into the Mood earlier and told him I’d like to learn how to weld. I have some ideas for metal sculpture that I’d like to carry out and Bradley was encouraging. One more thing to keep from the boredom of retirement.


So at 65 I’m getting ready to move ahead.

Night of the Living Dead…

I’ve had to get up really early every morning this week, what with WSHC calls and doctors appointments… tomorrow is no different. My big problem is that I don’t get any sleep at night. I tend to wake up in one and a half hour increments and by the time the 6 AM alarm goes off I’m more tired than I was when I went to bed at 10 PM.

As the week goes by I feel much worse. Usually I come back after my Saturday radio show and sleep off the afternoon… but I can’t this weekend since Elly and I have to drive down to DC for a party at an old friend’s house.

That means tonight will be utter misery, even if I go to bed at 9… even if I take a useless sleeping pill.

I need a vacation (hiding in my bedroom).

Getting ready to go on the air at WSHC…

It’s about ten after seven and I’m warming up the board for John Case’s  Tuesday morning show (we go on at 7:30). John is spending a couple of days in DC and I’m covering today and tomorrow… so I’ll be here until 9:00 AM.

If you want to listen, we’re at 89.7 FM in Shepherdstown, WV, but our signal doesn’t go very far… we are really meant to cover Shepherd University and the Town… but people all over the country listen to us at http://www.897wshc.edu. We know that because we get calls from New York, Montreal, Chicago and other places (like DC).


Anyway, I’ll get back to the blog when I get home… right after I walk the dogs.

Another day with no Internet connection at home…

… so I’m back at WSHC updating UTL and again making my apologies to regular readers and responders.

This morning on my Talk To Me program I have Ann Watson, Head Librarian of the Scarborough Library at Shepherd University and we are going to have a great discussion on Libraries, Books, and the change in reading activities given recorded books and the internet (and iPad/iPhone technologies.)

If you want to tune in, it’s 89.7 FM in the Shepherdstown area. To hear it on line go to http://www.897WSHC.org.

Hearing Richard Dreyfus

Elly and I went to hear Richard Dreyfus speak at Shepherd last night on the subject of teaching civics in our schools… something for which he has founded a new organization, The Dreyfus Initiative, which is setting up a Center over in Charles Town.

We got there a half-hour before the speech and the Byrd Center auditorium was already full. We got shuffled into the second overflow room which filled in about ten minutes. We got to watch Dreyfus on a big screen television via C-Span, which was recording the speech for later broadcast. For those, even in the overflow rooms, who wanted to meet him, there was to be a very crowded reception afterward.

You can go here to listen to the speech: http://www.c-spanvideo.org/program/Drey. I think you’ll be impressed… I was. I’d rather you heard the substance of his message, which closely relates to the major problems our country faces as we become a frozen left-right situation without the civility which was a part of America from its beginning.

Yesterday was Constitution Day, something I hadn’t realized. I guess this is just not promoted by our government or the press.

CATF’s 21st Season… an Overview

We often think of 21 as the age of adulthood, and this year the Contemporary American Theater Festival has turned 21.  In the years since it was conceived and brought into the world by Ed Herendeen, under the auspices of Shepherd University, the CATF has not only brought new plays, professional actors and visionary directors to Shepherdstown, it has given our small community an international focus in the Theater World.

CATF has brought us world premieres, commissioned works and plays by both the famous and the unknown.  Very few, if any, have ever let us down… and this season is no exception.

This year’s plays include:

Ages of the Moon, by Sam Shepard

The Insurgents, a World Premiere of a Commissioned Play by Lucy Thurber

Race, by David Mamet

We Are Here,  by Tracy Thorne

and

From Prague, World Premiere by Kyle Bradstreet

There are also extra, mostly free events, lectures and readings scheduled throughout the Festival. Listings are available at the website, www.catf.org.

Tickets are available now at the Box Office (warning a number of shows are Sold Out already, so call soon), 304-876-3473 or 800-999-CATF.

Ages of the Moon, by Sam Shepard, Directed by Ed Herendeen

In this long one-act, two men in their 60s, Ames (Anderson Matthews) and Byron (John Ottavino), sit on Ames’ front porch and discuss their 50-year friendship while waiting for a 5:00 AM eclipse of the moon. Yet, as they discuss their lives, we discover two different personalities, one prone to agitation and anger and the other composed and calm.

Both of them are aware that each is older than the last time they were together and both are losing their memories.

Both have lost the women in their lives… in fact they are together because Ames has called Byron for support because his wife has apparently walked off. We find out later that Byron’s wife, Lacey, has died (something he never told Ames about before… which gets the angrier one upset.)

As the eclipse progresses, they go through arguments, some hand to hand wrangling and what appears to be a near heart attack, ending up as two tired friends who realize they are all each other has as they watch the moon disappear in shadow.

And the question you ask, finally, are these two sides of the same person?

***

The Insurgents, a World Premiere of a Commissioned Play by Lucy Thurber,  Directed by Lear Debessonet

In a small, working class kitchen in western Massachusetts, Sally (Cassie Beck) has returned home from one of her several excursions around the country… something she has been doing for six years. She has been seeking answers to problems that the world seems to have inflicted on her… losing a college scholarship, questioning her identity as daughter to a laid off father and sister to an anti-intellectual brother.

As she questions her life she ponders revolt against society, influenced by the books she immerses herself in about the great insurgents of a previous age (John Brown, Nat Turner and Harriet Tubman)… and one of recent vintage (Timothy McVeigh.). All of them believed in using violence, if necessary. All believed they were called… whether by God or conscience… to carry out their actions.

The question is, now that you have learned how uneven the playing field is, how do you stand up to the things that are tearing you down? How it is not the fault of your lower class family, since you and they were cheated  from birth, that you read the books, on revolution and try to do something about the situation. How do you remain part of your family knowing they will never understand and will be truly alienated?

Be aware, there is a certain amount of audience participation in this work… from the direct discourse at the opening, to the singing, with lyrics supplied in the program, at the end. Don’t worry, you’ll enjoy it.

***

Race, by David Mamet, Directed by Ed Herendeen

Into a law firm run by an Afro-American partner (Guieseppe Jones) and a white partner (Kurt Zischke), with a young, black legal aide ( Crystal A. Dickinson), comes a wealthy white man (Anderson Matthews) accused of raping a black chambermaid. He seeks representation before going to court, having been turned down by another firm. The  greater part of the play is concerned with whether or not the partners will represent him, and, when there is no longer any choice, how they will structure the case to get him off.

At the same time it explores the power structure of race and how it becomes, as Mamet says, “a play about lies… Race, like sex, is a subject on which it is near impossible to tell the truth.” The tension of racial relations and office politics are combined with the weight of attitude, class and money to make surprise twists and turns for the audience.

If you have seen similar Mamet plays…Oleana comes to mind… then you will recognize an aspect of the author’s style that can only be called audience manipulation. The technique requires powerful character performances, and this cast is spectacular.

BTW, many of the scheduled performances of Race started selling out early. Check with the Box Office to see what’s available.

***

We Are Here,  by Tracy Thorne , Directed by Lucie Tiberghien

What happens when a child dies ending a family bloodline in tragedy?

In this remarkable play, two generations of upper middle class interracial marriages are on the verge of falling apart over the untimely death of Eli (Barrington Walters, Jr.), the young son of Billie (Crystal A. Dickinson) and Hal (Cary Donaldson). In the midst of their sorrow Billie somehow speaks to and hears Eli as they discuss ordinary things… Is it a dream? A hallucination?

Hal, her parents…Vera (Tamara Tunie) and Everett (Kurt Zischke)… and her sister Shawn (Stacey Sergeant), with whom she has a stormy relationship, all want her to stop talking to the air. Yet it is the thing that is keeping her sane in the face of misery. During the course of the play, Eli becomes visible and speaks with each of the others in the family… each with a different view of who he was and their relationship with him.

One of the most beautiful concepts in We Are Here is how the family communicates by music, carrying out a weekly song night. The songs show who they are in a clear and creative way… I was especially taken with Vera’s intense version of “Fever” which she sings in a vision of putting baby Eli to sleep.

The grief over of the child, the lift of the music and the closeness of a truly functional family is what finally brings them together to deal with the trial of life.

***

From Prague, World Premiere by Kyle Bradstreet, Directed by Ed Herendeen

For me, this is the best play of the season. Told in alternating monologues as the audience sits in a crumbling church, we learn of the breakup of a family over the sexual transgression of the father, Samuel (John Lescault). After sleeping with one of his students (Julianna Zinkel) and being discovered by his middle son Charles (Andy Bean), he flees to Prague where he apparently has committed suicide leaping off the Charles Bridge at the site of the Great Crucifix.

The interrelationships of the three characters are revealed throughout the monologues as they move from Prague to the funeral of Samuel’s wife, Patricia, back in the States. These are complex interactions which keeps the audience in a framework of investigation as the lives of the three characters go back and forth in time.

Prague is a haunting city made even more so by the wonderful set. Snow is falling as the audience enters and, to some extent, walks through it as they enter. It sets you up for the experience of a family torn apart by lies and self-destruction.

I’ve got TWO plays to see at CATF today…

“For 20 years, in the oldest town in West Virginia, new plays have had a home and a loyal audience.  The Contemporary American Theater Festival at Shepherd University is a dream for the writers of those plays.”


NPR’s Morning Edition – June 2010

On Saturday my wife and I were at the invited dress rehearsal of Kyle Bradstreet’s From Prague, one of the five plays I’m doing reviews for at WSHC. I won’t comment on it now (I do my reviews on Friday and they will be scattered through WSHC broadcasts at 89.7 FM… plus they will be reproduced on this blog and I’ll discuss them on next week’s Podcast), but I will say that it was one of the most amazing theatre experiences I have had in recent memory. This is a world premiere, so you are not likely to have seen it anywhere else… so go over to CATF and get tickets NOW.

This afternoon, John Case and I are going to the invited dress rehearsal of Sam Shephard’s Ages of the Moon and tonight Elly and I will be seeing David Mamet‘s Race at CATF. Then I’ll have two more plays to see tomorrow and Thursday so I can put my reviews together on Friday.

We are so fortunate in Shepherdstown to have the CATF. This is its 21st Season, and, as Elly and I have said many times, CATF is one of the things that attracted us to Shepherdstown as a place to live. To see excellent,

Contemporary American Theater Festival

professional Equity actors in new plays by both new and well-known American playwrights directed by supremely talented people like the Festival’s founder, Ed Herendeen, is an experience that defies accurate description.

More to come.

Project planning for, probably, a year from now…

I’ve started to work on a proposed theatre project which, if it comes to more than just planning and proposing, will be the first time I’ve done something like this in years.

As all of you know, given my series of animated backgrounds on this blog, I have been investigating the life and career of Eadweard Mubridge, his photo and animation experiments and his trial and acquittal on murder charges. While going into Muybridge-iana on the internet, I came across Philip Glass‘s “opera” of a couple of years ago, The Photographer, which is about Muybridge. Like most Glass pieces this is made up of highly repetitive musical signatures… this also includes some words by David Byrne. It’s three act (but short) structure includes signing, mime and orchestral variations… and I see it with projections of Muybridge animations as they would have been seen on a Zoopraxiscope.

I realized, however, three things:

1. No local community theater is likely to touch this idea… it is far too experimental and is not and audience draw. Therefore, finding a place to present it is a problem…

2. Since I want it presented at no charge, raising the money to pull this off is another thing to deal with…

3. Finding the musicians (a small ensemble, including a violinist and a keyboard artist), performers (2 sopranos and a mezzo), a conductor and a choreographer will probably require getting Shepherd University involved, and I’m not sure they will.

One thing at a time, however.

Elly and I went to look at Folly today… Folly is an outdoor performances space that was built some years ago by our friend Al Thomas, out in the woods outside of town. This would be a great place to do the project:

This is fascinating… what a spot.

I’ll comment on the project as I go along… at least as long as it might happen.


 

 

We Are One Demonstration Tonite In Shepherdstown…

 

 

____________

Candlelight Vigil –  Shepherdstown, WV

8:00PM to 08:45PM

Hosted by Rod Snyder

Event Description:The Jefferson County Young Democrats, Shepherd University Young Democrats and Jefferson County NAACP will hold a candlelight vigil to honor the life and work of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and to emphasize the ongoing struggle for civil rights and worker rights.

One of 1000 Demonstrations Nationwide.   Be There!

Location:
McMurran Hall at Shepherd University
Shepherdstown, WV
25443

“Candide” at Shepherd

Just returned from watching the last Dress Rehearsal of Shepherd’s production of “Candide”, the great operetta by Leonard Bernstein ( and Hugh Wheeler, Lillian Hellman, John LaTouche, Richard Wilbur, Dorothy Parker and Stephen Sondheim.)

For a student production it was pretty good… the Candide and Cunegunde were excellent and the rest of the cast certainly could sing.

This is a difficult show for student performers… hell, it’s a difficult show for professionals, and this cast, chorus and orchestra did a fine job. The staging was based on the Lonny Price concert production that was done with the New York Philharmonic at Lincoln Center, also seen on PBS. This is a fairly tight version and keeps the orchestra onstage throughout the show.

It runs for the next two weekends at Shepherd University. Go see it.

I am off to review Candide…

Tonite is the dress rehearsal of Shepherd University‘s production of Candide which I am reviewing for WSHC FM. I’m getting ready to go over to the Franks Center now and I’m quite looking forward to it.

I’ll be publishing my review here in the blog as well.

See you later…

What we can do to preserve Liberal/Progressive standards and information in the growing Right-Wing Oligarchy…

My wife asked me, as we watched the news about Keith Olbermann’s firing at MSNBC, the House of Representatives’ attack on necessary human services – especially in Health care, and the limiting of the commercial media to control by 6 right leaning corporations (excuse me… “citizens”, according to the SCOTUS): “What can we do?”

Good question, and one I think many Progressives and Liberals are asking themselves and each other right now.

Well, here are a few things to remember right now:

1.) The Internet, especially the blogosphere on the WWW, is an overwhelmingly Progressive place, with left oriented sites far outnumbering those on the right. As long as technology moves forward, it will remain Progressive… “Conservative Technology” is a backward concept that will not bring us into the kind of social network that we are only recently becoming aware if.

Therefore: get out there on these blogs (start with mine and the list of others you’ll find on the right side of this page)… make your comments seen… start your own blogs and make your opinions stand up with the rest of us. I look forward to cross-linking ith you.

2.) Get anything you can onto other media. I’m particularly fond of Radio and I participate on a very liberal morning radio show (I’m on every Friday and I sub on other days when the regular host is on vacation) called “Winners and Losers” on WSHC FM 89.7, in Shepherdstown, WV. For folks not in our local broadcast range (limited to the WV Eastern Panhandle area) this station at Shepherd University has a large local listening population and more and more people who listen On Line.

If you live in a college town, you may find other stations like this one who allow locals to broadcast (you do it for Free as college stations have very low budgets.) Check it out.

3.) You can run for local, state, county… even National offices. Get involved in politics now. 2012 is likely to bring back the many voters who got Obama elected in the first place.

In Summary… GET INVOLVED. And when you come up with things, click on my little mailbox and let me know what you’re doing. Or leave a comment.

-Bill.

Saturday Morning…

I don’t know why it is, but, standing in the shower this morning, I was overtaken by the score from “Carousel” and started singing Billy Bigelow‘s Soliloquy out loud, persisting until it’s completion as I was getting dressed. Byron, our younger dog, lay on the bedroom floor staring at me.

I hadn’t been thinking about Carousel… I don’t recall thinking about it and I hadn’t dreamed about it. I have been thinking about Candide, however… since I am reviewing the Shepherd University production next week for WSHC radio. I’ll be going to a dress rehearsal in order to get the review on the air timed with the Friday opening on the 4th.

I have been playing a couple of versions of Candide from my iTunes collections… primarily the Harold Prince version from 1974 and the British Royal National Theatre version from 1999 (and somewhere I have the Original Cast album , sometimes known as the Lillian Hellman version, whose story and Richard Wilbur lyrics and Barbara Cook soprano vocals, many prefer over the revisions… but I don’t know where it is right now. On a CD download somewhere (although I have a 33 1/3 rpm record somewhere as well.) That is where the thoughts of Carousel may have come up.

Each of the two musicals have significant overtures which often stand by themselves in legitimate Orchestra performances. Richard Rogers’ Carousel Waltz and Bernstein’s Candide Overture (available on YouTube with Bernstein conducting it shortly before his death) are both splendid, long (4 minutes or so) pieces which are quickly recognized even by people who have not seen either shows. That’s a thought which may have brought Carousel into my mind this morning.

Isn’t it interesting how music I learned at age 14 persists at age 64.