Archive for December, 2010

KadmusArts 2010 Festival Year in Review!

Tuesday, December 21st, 2010

Are you ready to fall in love, all over again?

To celebrate 2010, sing along with one of the world’s great bands, Sharon Jones and the Dap Kings, as their song All Over Again creates a perfect soundtrack to the KadmusArts Festival Year in Review:

All of the images highlight only a portion of the 2010 festival producers and promoters, artists and bands, audiences and fans from 154 countries who use to travel, discover, and create.

What a great year: extraordinary live events, amazing artists, astounding audiences!

Our toast for 2011: The world is a better place when we all have the opportunity to live a festive life. Here’s hoping we see you on the road, on the stage, and on

From all of us at KadmusArts,
Happy New Year!

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Artists In Memoriam

Monday, December 13th, 2010

In Memoriam

Photo by Roberto Ruiz — Creative Commons License Some Rights Reserved

As a way of honoring our heritage, our inspiration, and our common global culture, here’s a look back at the significant artists and producers who passed away in 2010:

Jill Clayburgh
Tony Curtis
James Gammon
Dennis Hopper
Tanie Kitabayashi
Sotigui Kouyaté
Mick Lally
Steve Landesberg
Patricia Neal
Leslie Nielsen
Kazuo Ohno
Corin Redgrave
Lynne Redgrave
Lorene Yarnell

Jerry Bock
Geoffrey Burgon
David Fanshawe
Henryk Górecki
Jacques Hétu
Benjamin Lees
Paulo Moura
Ariel Ramírez
George David Weiss

Classical Music
Rudolf Barshai
Ernest Fleischmann
Jacob Lateiner
Sergiu Luca
Charles Mackerras
Yvonne Loriod
Earl Wild

Rex Nettleford
Arnold Spohr
Doris E. Travis
Jonathan Wolken

Claude Chabrol
Alain Courneau
Clive Donner
Blake Edwards
Bud Greenspan
Mario Monicelli
Arthur Penn
Eric Rohmer
Christoph Schlingensief
Werner Schroeter
David William

Fred Anderson
Buddy Collette
John Dankworth
Bill Dixon
Martin Drew
Herb Ellis
Hotep Galeta
Noah Howard
Hank Jones
Abbey Lincoln
James Moody
Benny Powell
Billy Taylor

Helen Boatwright
Hugues Cuénod
Frances Ginsberg
Peter Hofmann
Anthony Rolfe Johnson
Philip Langridge
Siphiwo Ntshebe
Laszlo Polgar
Anneliese Rothenberger
Cesare Siepi
Giulietta Simionato
Joan Sutherland
Shirley Verrett

Herman Leonard
Jim Marshall

Bella Akhmadulina
Tuli Kupferberg
Purushottama Lal
Edwin Morgan
Adrian Paunescu
Andrei Voznesensky

Iain Burgess
Bernard Coutaz
Dino De Laurentiis
Hillard Elkins
Richard Griffey
Elaine Kaufman
Ruth Lilly
Mark Malkovich
Malcolm McLaren
Bob Mercer
Roy R. Neuberger
M. Edgar Rosenblum
John Willis


Bill Aucoin
Ron Banks
Solomon Burke
Stuart Cable
Captain Beefheart
Bobby Charles
Hank Cochran
Phelps “Catfish” Collins
Rich Cronin
Ronnie James Dio
Jimmy Dean
Kenny Edwards
Mike Edwards
Bobby Farrell
Doug Fieger
Dave Fisher
Pauly Fuemana
Harvey Fuqua
James Freud
Al Goodman
Paul Gray
Charles Haddon
Tim Hart
Richie Hayward
Dale Hawkins
Marvin Isley
Gregory Isaacs
Jackson Kaujeua
Ben Keith
Mark Linkous
Teena Marie
Kate McGarrigle
Sugar Minott
Remmy Ongala
Teddy Pendergrass
Pete Quaife
Jay Reatard
el Sabalero
Roberto Sánchez
Irwin Silber
Ari Up
Phillip Walker
Bernard Wilson
Robert Wilson
T-Bone Wolk

Eddie Fisher
Olga Guillot
Walter Hawkins
Lena Horne
Mitch Miller
Enrique Morente
Susan Reed
El Shaka

Visual Artists
Louise Bourgeois
Eric Joisel
Ken Noland

Beryl Bainbridge
Helen Chinoy
Bernard Clavel
Cecchi D’Amico
Jacqueline de Romilly
Denis Dutton
Frank Kermode
Heda Kovaly
Jiri Krizan
Harry Mulisch
J.D. Salinger
Jose Saramago
Erich Segal
Mikhail Shatrov
Alan Sillitoe
Joseph Stein
Kohei Tsuka
Tahar Wattar

- Bill Reichblum

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Hungary’s Art of Freedom

Monday, December 6th, 2010


Photo by Amancay Maahs — Creative Commons License Some Rights Reserved

As a follow-up to our post “Old Story of Ugly Politics,” this letter, issued by the Hungarian Critics’ Association, calls the attention of the international media and theatre community to the intensifying state and political control over arts, culture and media in Hungary.

A new highly-contested and controversial “media law” of the present government promises serious control over the whole media, including blogs. The new Media authority – formed by members of the ruling party – will have the entitlement to control and punish. This week, independent cultural papers and sites are published with a blank cover page as a protest sign against this control. See blank covers and

Governmental attacks on the National Theatre and its artistic director, Róbert Alföldi, were only rumors until the “case” was recently discussed on the floor of Parliament. Members of Parliament described Alföldi as deviant, rowdy, and treasonous, and called the present National Theatre dangerous and mischievous. They are calling the work presented in the National Theatre obscene, pornographic, anti-national, and anti-Hungarian, and are demanding the expelling of Róbert Alföldi from the National. State secretary’s answer of Ministry of National Resources was: “Everything will happen in due time”.

On December 1st, one of the parties of the Parliament, Jobbik organized a demonstration next to the National Theatre’s building with the sole purpose of replacing the director. Artists, writers, critics, and theatre goers – organized by a Facebook group - also gathered in front of the National marking their sympathy for this theatre and artistic freedom. Since the beginning of Alföldi’s tenure in July 2009, the National Theatre has prospered and undergone an artistic rebirth. The director was awarded the precious Critics’ Prize in September 2010 “For renewing the National Theatre”, and a similar prize from the City Council of Budapest. Many works presented in the theatre received international critical acclaim were invited to international festivals.

Róbert Alföldi’s contract does not expire until June 30, 2013. His dismissal would mean the termination of this contract without any legal base, and this, consequently, could create a dangerous precedent: from that time on the leader of any cultural institute could be dismissed based on the aesthetic ideal of a given political party.

Another major cultural institution in the country, the Opera House of Budapest (the best financed institution) is also undergoing difficult times. The artistic director of the Opera, Balázs Kovalik, an internationally celebrated director, was dismissed this past summer. There is still no appointed general director to take his place.

Because appointments of theatre directors in the provinces are made directly by the local governments, decisions were often based on political sympathies for the ruling political party. This has been always the same, indifferent of political climate. The process has a legal face and an illusory professional basis, because seemingly directors’ applications and eventual appointments are based on competition. There is a board of professionals who evaluates the applications and makes recommendations to the local government. But this board is either formed of people with a particular political view who are certain to make the “right” decision, or it is an indeed free board whose proposal is not taken into consideration. This situation was recently repeated when the new artistic director was named to the theatre in Tatabánya, and a fine previous leadership was replaced.

The independent theatres in Hungary are most vulnerable in this current climate. This is the field that is most mobile, young, and willing to take artistic risks; this is the field that contains all dance companies, and most of the production houses and freelance artists. It has been only one year since the so-called theatre law, which guarantees for the first time that a minimum 10% of the total budget for the national theatre subsidy goes to independents, came to operate. One of the new cultural leadership’s first actions was to cut this subsidy, although it is such a microscopic part of the whole budget.

The theatre law will undergo a serious rework in the spring 2011, and there is little hope that the 10% for independents will be maintained.

Watch the president of the cultural committee of the parliament commenting what should happen in the National. (English subtitles from 9.20).

We are addressing you, the international theatre and media community, because we want to preserve the freedom of artistic expression and speech we gained 20 years ago after the social changes.

Issued by Hungarian Theatre Critics’ Association

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