Nico Muhly, photographed by Matthew MurphyIra writes:
When I was invited to interview composer Nico Muhly, I jumped at the chance. He’s the unusually-young-for-a-guy-premiering-his-work-at-the-Met composer of the new opera Two Boys. I really like his music and am so incredibly curious to see how he turns a real incident – about a 16-year-old boy who almost murdered another boy – and the Internet chats that lead to the attack – into an opera.
Our interview is at the NY Public Library next Tuesday, Oct 29th, 7:00. Tickets.
There’s a video excerpt from the opera on the Metropolitan Opera site. They also commissioned this arty but beautiful video in conjunction with the opera, hoping, I’m told, that people who aren’t into classical music or opera might like it.
A lecture explaining why using our imaginations, and providing for others to use theirs, is an obligation for all citizens
Fiction can show you a different world. It can take you somewhere you’ve never been. Once you’ve visited other worlds, like those who ate fairy fruit, you can never be entirely content with the world that you grew up in. Discontent is a good thing: discontented people can modify and improve their worlds, leave them better, leave them different.
Our guest tonight is the Guardian’s Editor-in-Chief, Alan Rusbridger. In the last three years, he’s seen it all: private meetings with Julian Assange, the collapse of News of the World, Edward Snowden’s revelations about the NSA surveillance programs. Read his thoughts on these stories and more, and prepare your own questions for tonight’s event.
Our guest this Wednesday is Alan Rusbridger, the editor in chief of the Guardian. He spent over a year learning Chopin’s First Ballade, and along the way spoke with countless musicians, cognitive scientists, amateurs, and more in an effort to understand this complex and difficult work. Among those he interviews is Murray Perahia. In his discussion with Rusbridger, Perahia suggests the work has a sonata-like structure, with three parts: enslavement, present exile, and future rebirth. Here is Perahia’s performance of the piece.
In case you missed it, here’s the full-length video of our evening featuring Sandra Day O’Connor, Madeleine Albright, and Anne-Marie Slaughter. If you’re pressed for time, we recommend scrolling to 49:13 to hear Justice O’Connor’s story about growing up on a cattle ranch in rural Arizona.
"If all fairy tales begin ‘Once upon a time,’ then all graduation speeches begin ‘When I was sitting where you are now.’ We may not always say it, at least not in those exact words, but it’s what graduation speakers are thinking. We look out at the sea of you and think, Isn’t there some mistake? I should still be sitting there. I was that young fifteen minutes ago, I was that beautiful and lost."
The school year is just beginning, but Ann’s commencement words are a wonderful articulation about the passing of time.
Join LIVE from the NYPL in hosting her and Elizabeth Gilbert on December 10.
“I tend to like art that does more than what’s necessary, goes further, exceeds; but that keeps its contours sharp, holds its shape. I think of the way huge flocks of pigeons reverse and catch the light in a synchrony that doesn’t eradicate the oneness of each particular bird.”—
Poet Timothy Donnelly, on his style of writing, which he will discuss further with John Ashbery and Adam Fitzgerald on September 19.
We’ve reviewed hundreds of books publishing this fall. These are the stand-outs.
Publishers Weekly is piquing our interest in the many exciting books coming out this Fall. We’re particularly thrilled to see shout outs to Margaret Atwood and Elizabeth Gilbert, both of whom will be joining LIVE from the NYPL this season!
When I heard the Trayvon Martin verdict last month, I was astonished. I shouldn’t have been, but I was. I grew up in Mississippi in the ’80s, and my entire family has lived here in the South for generations, so I should have known that George Zimmerman would be found not guilty. I saw that Trayvon Martin was, in some ways, tried for his own death, that the subtext in the courtroom and in the court of public opinion was: He was a thug. He was a threat. He was a violent menace. He deserved it. That in some ways, little baby-faced Trayvon went on trial for being young and black and male. I know this country is rife with racism. I didn’t have the heart to actually watch the trial proceedings or any commentary on the case, so I was following all of it on Twitter . When I read that verdict, I was moved to tears, but something about the outcome felt expected. I felt surprise and knowing all at once.
LIVE from the NYPL’s guest Jesmyn Ward honors the memory of Trayvon Martin.
Curious about how The Moth came to called just that?
“The organization’s name comes from its founder, author George Dawes Green, who was once part of a group of friends who gathered on a porch in Georgia and told stories on summer evenings. Members noticed moths sneaking in and started calling themselves “The Moths.” Green later re-created the gatherings in his New York apartment and they proved so popular, they spread to clubs and cafes, because, according to the Moth’s website, “Audiences are drawn to the stories, like moths to a flame.”
George Dawes Green, along with Andrew Solomon, Catherine Burns, and more, will join LIVE to tell stories about stories!
“There are moments from childhood that attract heat in our memories, some for their sublime brilliance, some for their malignancy. The first time that I was treated differently because of my race is one such memory.”—
This is just the beginning of Jesmyn Ward’s thoughtful piece in the NY Times.
LIVE from the NYPL welcomes her back on September 30, for an event that is not to be missed!
“Elmore Leonard was the only author I ever wanted to be. Leonard outsized his characters with his easy charm, sardonic humor and seen-it-all-before eyes. When it came to books, Elmore Leonard was the king of cool. Who wouldn’t want to be him?”—
Michael Connelly remembers a literary hero of his, Elmore Leonard.
On December 4, masters of the mystery genre Michael Connelly and Martin Cruz Smith will join LIVE from the NYPL.
"You always think, 'Oh, if only I had a little chalet in the mountains! How great that would be and I’d do all this writing…' Except, no, I wouldn’t. I’d do the same amount of writing I do now and the rest of the time I’d go stir crazy. If you’re waiting for the perfect moment you’ll never write a thing because it will never arrive. I have no routine. I have no foolproof anything. There’s nothing foolproof."
Margaret Atwood, who will be joining Carl Hiaasen in conversation at LIVE from the NYPL on September 17, reflects on her process of writing.
“Newspapers continue to reign supreme in the delivery of local news. If you want to know what’s going on in your town – whether the news is about the mayor or taxes or high school football – there is no substitute for a local newspaper that is doing its job.”—Ann Patchett, who will be coming to LIVE in a few months, recently wrote a piece for The Washington Post about Jeff Bezos’ purchase of the cherished newspaper. Warren Buffett, who will also be coming to LIVE this fall, offers his own insight here regarding the essential role of newspapers in a technologically dynamic age.