Arts



arts

‘The Half of It’ is a beautifully bold stroke and the love story we’ve been longing for

May 11, 2020 3:00am

On May 1, Netflix released Alice Wu’s “The Half of It,” a film that follows Ellie Chu (Leah Lewis) as she navigates love and personal identity as a queer, Asian American teenager. “The Half of It” transforms the common teen romance narrative into a funny, relatable and heartwarming work of art by pushing the boundaries of representation in mainstream romantic comedies.


Arts

Review: 'What Kinda Music' is a creative triumph

May 7, 2020 2:10am

Tom Misch and Yussef Dayes released their latest project, “What Kinda Music,” through the jazz label Blue Note Records on April 24. Their collaboration is an experimental album combining the upbeat, polished chords and production of Misch with the jazzier, more experimentally inclined sound of the drummer Dayes. “What Kinda Music” is Misch’s first project since his 2018 album “Geography” and is also Dayes’ first album release since 2017. “What Kinda Music” is exactly what the name implies — a genre-defying album, incorporating the best of both Misch and Dayes. It’s a project that’s part electronica, part jazz and part hip-hop. Dayes’ experimental inventiveness melds with Misch’s catchy chords and pitch-perfect voice (and a well-rounded range of featured artists) to create an original UK sound.


Arts

Hop to Broadway: Live with Ali Stroker

May 7, 2020 2:10am

The Hopkins Center for the Arts has continued its Hop to Broadway series virtually with an April 29 conversation featuring “Oklahoma!” star Ali Stroker, hosted by theater professor and “Oklahoma!” choreographer John Heginbotham. Stroker, who plays Ado Annie in Daniel Fish’s revival of “Oklahoma!,” shared her perspective on theatrical connection through virtual platforms and the expressive power of song.


Arts

Hood Museum’s virtual gallery talk explores limitations of the virtual artistic experience

May 4, 2020 4:23am

Even after we emerge from quarantine, our interaction with museums and the arts will likely be influenced by social distancing, according to Hood Museum of Art director John Stomberg. Last Wednesday, Stomberg’s virtual gallery talk titled “Mediated Authenticity: Art and Experience Now” provided a window into our new way of interacting with museums and by extension, with art itself.


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arts

Amir ElSaffar’s Live Living Room Concert: Expanding the boundaries of performance in an age of social distancing

April 27, 2020 3:05am

Last Thursday, jazz trumpeter Amir ElSaffar and four members of his Rivers of Sound orchestra performed together live from multiple locations for the Hopkins Center for the Arts’s first online concert through its new program, Hop@Home. ElSaffar and the entire 17-member orchestra were originally scheduled to perform at the Hop this spring. The in-person concert has been rescheduled for 2021. 


arts

Review: 'Sawayama' is musically fascinating, but falls short of greatness

April 27, 2020 3:00am

Every 20 years, like clockwork, American culture repeats itself. This does not mean that the same exact trends are recycled in an endless loop. Rather, after about 20 years, outdated culture becomes “retro,” and nostalgia for past decades shapes new styles and artwork. The 1970s had “Happy Days,” and the 1990s had “That ’70s Show.” In a more abstract sense, the infatuation with the glamorous lifestyles of the fabulously wealthy in the 1980s inspired reality television and “Gossip Girl” in the 2000s. As we enter the 2020s, the music stylings of the early aughts are making a comeback. Artists like Charli XCX and Slayyyter evoke Britney Spears-style pop, while Poppy and Grimes both recently released music that is heavily reminiscent of nu metal.


Arts

Review: 'Never Rarely Sometimes Always' is a slow burn that highlights a sad reality

April 24, 2020 2:10am

As a wave of states introduced abortion restrictions last year, abortion rights have increasingly come under fire. Now, in the age of COVID-19 — with abortions deemed non-essential in some states — the right to choose is especially pertinent. With this in mind, “Never Rarely Sometimes Always,” a movie that premiered at the Sundance Film Festival in January and can now be purchased on Amazon Prime, is even more timely than it would’ve been just two months ago. 


Arts

Virtual museum tours provide substitute for in-person visits

April 23, 2020 2:10am

Virtual tours of national parks, Instagram Live concerts from celebrities and Broadway shows streaming online are all examples of the new forms of entertainment people have been consuming since the country went on lockdown. Among these options, the virtual museum tour offers an experience that is both self-directed and artistic. 24/7, 365 days a year, you can see selections from some of the world’s best museums from your home, either through a program of the museum’s own or through an offshoot of the all-seeing Google.


Arts

Review: 'Pandemic' provides an informative but unfocused account of combating deadly viruses

April 16, 2020 10:57am

The Netflix docuseries “Pandemic: How to Prevent an Outbreak” offers six episodes to binge-watch during self-isolation. If you have already seen the drama of Steven Soderbergh’s “Contagion” and Wolfgang Petersen’s “Outbreak” or are searching for a documentary perspective, “Pandemic” may be the show for you. Following the lives of doctors in the U.S., Asia and Africa as they combat flu viruses, the show reveals the challenges of preventing a deadly outbreak of influenza. Although “Pandemic” is flawed in its false advertising and dwells too long on its depiction of doctors’ personal lives, it still presents an overall interesting and accurate account of influenza epidemics and pandemics.


Arts

Hopkins Center introduces Hop@Home

April 16, 2020 2:10am

The Hopkins Center for the Arts has canceled or postponed all live events through May 31 in response to the global spread of COVID-19. Rather than shuttering its doors completely, however, the Hop has introduced “Hop@Home” — a new project aimed at creating “a virtual stage that brings our adventurous artistry and creative community to your living room,” according to a statement from Hop director Mary Lou Aleskie.


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arts

Hood Museum experiments with virtual learning

April 13, 2020 3:05am

Although the online nature of this term poses a significant obstacle in the Hood Museum’s core functionality — enabling people to interact with art — the museum staff see a silver lining in the chance to appreciate art in a new way. One of the biggest challenges this term was ensuring that people can still observe the art and witness “the power of the shared experience,” according to Hood Museum director John Stomberg.


arts

A TV Guide to Social Distancing

April 6, 2020 3:30am

Whether you’re in a mandated quarantine or simply practicing social distancing, we can all agree that there isn’t much to do in the confines of your home. Sure, you’re attending classes from the comfort of your bed and appreciating how light your workload is now that everything is credit/no credit, but you’re getting restless and bored and in desperate need of a distraction. Welcome to a comprehensive list of shows worth your laughs, tears and time, for whatever mood you’re in.


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arts

Majority of arts and music classes moving on despite difficulties

April 2, 2020 2:10am

With the College’s switch to online instruction this term, many questions have arisen over how studio art and music courses, which rely heavily on in-person instruction and hands-on learning, will proceed. Despite the challenges, however, faculty and staff in both departments have found ways to keep their courses running remotely.