July 2009


The latest issue of Performance!, the newsletter of the SAA Performing Arts Roundtable is now available.

Percy Anderson's costume design for Herbert Beerbohm Tree's production of A Midsummer Night's Dream (1911) from the B. J. Simmons & Co. records, Harry Ransom Center.

Percy Anderson's costume design for Herbert Beerbohm Tree's production of A Midsummer Night's Dream (1911) from the B. J. Simmons & Co. records, Harry Ransom Center.

In addition to feature length articles on outsourcing the Paul Taylor Dance Company archives and the development of an exhibit space by the American Choral Directors Association, the issue contains full details about the upcoming PAR meeting at the SAA Annual Meeting in Austin, Texas.

In our ongoing remissness, we also completely forgot to remark upon the second anniversary of Ephemeral Archives (last week).  Blame it on the summer heat.

Look for more tidbits about the Roundtable in the coming days…

Image credit: Harry Ransom Center Web site

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Merce Cunningham at Black Mountain College  (1948)

Merce Cunningham at Black Mountain College (1948)

We generally do not include obituaries on Ephemeral Archives, but just wanted to observe that the news of the dance giant’s death followed too closely on the heels of last month’s announcement about the Cunningham Dance Foundation’s Legacy Plan.  Merce Cunningham was a pioneer and a visionary in just about everything, including his utilization and support of archives.  Too sad.

Image credit: NYPL Digital Gallery Image ID: 1619842

Hatch Cats poster

Hatch Cats poster

I’m posting about these two exhibitions now mainly because we haven’t run a cat picture in quite a while, but also to serve as a reminder that the extremely interesting show (with a boring title), American Letterpress: The Art of Hatch Show Print is due to close this Sunday after a long run at the Experience Music Project.  Catch it while you can.

Rowlf

Rowlf

Over in the other part of the building, Jim Henson’s Fantastic World is drawing in huge crowds (or at least it was on the free night I attended).  While the exhibit could have benefited from a bigger gallery space, there were a lot of fascinating objects crammed in.  To add insult to injury, a mother dragged her crying toddler over to see the case with Rowlf, referring to him as “Fonzie Bear.”  Teach your children well.

Image credits:

Image 1: Hatch Cats from the Country Music Hall of Fame Online Store

Image 2: Rowlf from the EMP/SFM Web site

While we await the Paper of Record to pronounce on the recently opened exhibit at the New York Public Library for the Performing Arts, Diaghilev’s Theater of Marvels, you can enjoy Robert Johnson’s account in the Star Ledger.  In other news, the New York Times finally did get around to reviewing Creating the Modern Stage: Designs for Theater and Opera at the Morgan Library & Museum, but more from an art historical perspective.  What’s the archivist’s point of view?

Robin (and egg) cigarette card

Robin (and egg) cigarette card

Yes, the pace of posting certainly has slackened a bit, but we will endeavor to write more regularly (and occasionally about the Society of American Archivist’s Performing Arts Roundtable) as the countdown to the 2009 Annual Meeting begins.  Remember that tomorrow is the deadline for the early-bird registration discount (and the conference hotel is already filled)!

Image credit:  NYPL Digital Gallery ID #1133235