Performing Arts

ANNA PAVLOVA: VOLUME 85

ANNA PAVLOVA: VOLUME 85

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In this book from the critically acclaimed, multimillion-copy best-selling Little People, BIG DREAMS series, discover the true story of ballet dancer Anna Pavlova.


Little Anna fell in love with ballet after watching a performance with her mother. At the age of just nine years old, she auditioned for the famous Imperial Ballet! But...she was rejected.

The set-back didn't stop Anna--she auditioned again a year later and was accepted into the company. Although ballet was her passion, it didn't always come easily to her, and she worked fiercely to become the best.

After her training was complete, she performed across Russia and later formed her own company with which she toured the world. The story of Anna Pavlova, one of the greatest dancers to have ever lived, teaches us that with hard work, our talents can take us wherever we want to go.

This inspiring book features stylish and quirky illustrations and extra facts at the back, including a biographical timeline with historical photos and a detailed profile of the star's life.

Little People, BIG DREAMS is a best-selling series of books and educational games that explore the lives of outstanding people, from designers and artists to scientists and activists. All of them achieved incredible things, yet each began life as a child with a dream.

This empowering series offers inspiring messages to children of all ages, in a range of formats. The board books are told in simple sentences, perfect for reading aloud to babies and toddlers. The hardback versions present expanded stories for beginning readers. Boxed gift sets allow you to collect a selection of the books by theme. Matching games and other fun learning tools provide even more ways to make the lives of these role models accessible to children​.

Inspire the next generation of outstanding people who will change the world with Little People, BIG DREAMS!

Apollo's Angels:A History of Ballet

Apollo's Angels:A History of Ballet

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NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER - NAMED ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY THE NEW YORK TIMES BOOK REVIEW, LOS ANGELES TIMES, SAN FRANCISCO CHRONICLE, AND PUBLISHERS WEEKLY

For more than four hundred years, the art of ballet has stood at the center of Western civilization. Its traditions serve as a record of our past. Lavishly illustrated and beautifully told, Apollo's Angels--the first cultural history of ballet ever written--is a groundbreaking work. From ballet's origins in the Renaissance and the codification of its basic steps and positions under France's Louis XIV (himself an avid dancer), the art form wound its way through the courts of Europe, from Paris and Milan to Vienna and St. Petersburg. In the twentieth century, émigré dancers taught their art to a generation in the United States and in Western Europe, setting off a new and radical transformation of dance. Jennifer Homans, a historian, critic, and former professional ballerina, wields a knowledge of dance born of dedicated practice. Her admiration and love for the ballet, as Entertainment Weekly notes, brings "a dancer's grace and sure-footed agility to the page."

Catherine Littlefield: A Life in Dance

Catherine Littlefield: A Life in Dance

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While she is best remembered today as founder of the Philadelphia Ballet and the director and driving force behind the famous Littlefield School of Ballet, from which Balanchine drew the nucleus for his School of American Ballet, Catherine Littlefield (1905-51) and her oeuvre were in many ways emblematic of the full representation of dance throughout entertainments of the first half of the 20th century. From her early work as a teenager dancing for Florenz Ziegfeld to her later work in choreographing extravagant ice skating shows, a remarkable dance with 90 bicyclists for the 1940 World's Fair, and on television as resident choreographer for The Jimmy Durante Show, Littlefield was amongst the first choreographers to bring concert dance to broader venues, and her legacy lives on today in her enduring influence on generations of American ballet dancers.

As the first biography of Littlefield, Catherine Littlefield: A Life in Dance traces her life in full from birth through childhood experiences dancing on the Academy of Music's grand stage, and from her foundation of the groundbreaking Philadelphia Ballet Company in 1935 to her later work in television and beyond. Littlefield counted among her many glamorous friends and colleagues writer Zelda Fitzgerald, conductor Leopold Stokowski, and composer Kurt Weill. This biography also provides an engrossing portrait of the remarkable Littlefield family, many of whom were instrumental to Catherine's success. With the unflagging support of her generous husband and indomitable mother, Littlefield gave shape to the course of American ballet in the 20th century long before Balanchine arrived in the United States.

While she is best remembered today as founder of the Philadelphia Ballet and the director and driving force behind the famous Littlefield School of Ballet, from which Balanchine drew the nucleus for his School of American Ballet, Catherine Littlefield (1905-51) and her oeuvre were in many ways emblematic of the full representation of dance throughout entertainments of the first half of the 20th century. From her early work as a teenager dancing for Florenz Ziegfeld to her later work in choreographing extravagant ice skating shows, a remarkable dance with 90 bicyclists for the 1940 World's Fair, and on television as resident choreographer for The Jimmy Durante Show, Littlefield was amongst the first choreographers to bring concert dance to broader venues, and her legacy lives on today in her enduring influence on generations of American ballet dancers.

Cinematic Encounters 2: Portraits and Polemics

Cinematic Encounters 2: Portraits and Polemics

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Eschewing the idea of film reviewer-as-solitary-expert, Jonathan Rosenbaum continues to advance his belief that a critic's ideal role is to mediate and facilitate our public discussion of cinema. Portraits and Polemics presents debate as an important form of cinematic encounter whether one argues with filmmakers themselves, on behalf of their work, or with one's self.

Rosenbaum takes on filmmakers like Chantal Akerman, Richard Linklater, Manoel De Oliveira, Mark Rappaport, Elaine May, and Béla Tarr. He also engages, implicitly and explicitly, with other writers, arguing with Pauline Kael—and Wikipedia—over Jacques Demy, with the Hollywood Reporter and Variety reviewers of Jarmusch’s The Limits of Control, with David Thomson about James L. Brooks, and with many American and English film critics about misrepresented figures from Jerry Lewis to Yasujiro Ozu to Orson Welles. Throughout, Rosenbaum mines insights, pursues pet notions, and invites readers to join the fray.

Cinematic Encounters: Interviews and Dialogues

Cinematic Encounters: Interviews and Dialogues

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Godard. Fuller. Rivette. Endfield. Tarr. In his celebrated career as a film critic, Jonathan Rosenbaum has undertaken wide-ranging dialogues with many of the most daring and important auteurs of our time.

Cinematic Encounters collects more than forty years of interviews that embrace Rosenbaum's vision of film criticism as a collaboration involving multiple voices. Rosenbaum accompanies Orson Welles on a journey back to Heart of Darkness, the unmade film meant to be Welles's Hollywood debut. Jacques Tati addresses the primacy of décor and soundtrack in his comedic masterpiece PlayTime, while Jim Jarmusch explains the influence of real and Hollywoodized Native Americans in Dead Man. By arranging the chapters chronologically, Rosenbaum invites readers to pursue thematic threads as if the discussions were dialogues between separate interviews. The result is a rare gathering of filmmakers trading thoughts on art and process, on great works and false starts, and on actors and intimate moments.

Dance in the Renaissance: European Fashion, French Obsession

Dance in the Renaissance: European Fashion, French Obsession

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Dance was at the core of Renaissance social activity in France and had important connections with most major issues of the period. This finely illustrated book provides the first full account of the pivotal place and high status of dance in sixteenth-century French culture and society.

Margaret M. McGowan examines the diverse forms of dance in the Renaissance, contemporary attitudes toward dance, and the light this throws on moral, political, and aesthetic concerns of the time. Among the subjects she covers are: expectations of dance; style, costume, music, and social coding; court dance versus social dancing; dance and the Valois dynasty; professional dancers, virtuosos, and choreographers; burlesque; opposition to dance; and dance and the people. Nearly one hundred illustrations, many of them rare, accompany the engrossing text.

First Collection of Criticism by a Living Female Rock Critic: Revised and Expanded Edition

First Collection of Criticism by a Living Female Rock Critic: Revised and Expanded Edition

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Jessica Hopper's criticism is a trenchant and necessary counterpoint not just on music, but on our culture at large. --Annie Clark, St. Vincent

An acclaimed, career-spanning collection from a fiercely feminist and revered contemporary rock critic, reissued with new material

Throughout her career, spanning more than two decades, Jessica Hopper, a revered and pioneering music critic, has examined women recording and producing music, in all genres, through an intersectional feminist lens. The First Collection of Criticism by a Living Female Rock Critic features oral histories of bands like Hole and Sleater Kinney, interviews with the women editors of 1970s-era Rolling Stone, and intimate conversations with iconic musicians such as Björk, Robyn, and Lido Pimienta. Hopper journeys through the truths of Riot Grrrl's empowering insurgence; decamps to Gary, Indiana, on the eve of Michael Jackson's death; explodes the grunge-era mythologies of Nirvana and Courtney Love; and examines the rise of emo. The collection also includes profiles and reviews of some of the most-loved, and most-loathed, women artists making music today: Fiona Apple, Kacey Musgraves, M.I.A., Miley Cyrus, Lana Del Rey.

In order for the music industry to change, Hopper writes, we need "the continual presence of radicalized women . . . being encouraged and given reasons to stay, rather than diminished by the music which glues our communities together." The First Collection of Criticism by a Living Female Rock Critic--published to acclaim in 2015, and reissued now with new material and an introduction by Samantha Irby--is a rallying cry for women-centered history and storytelling, and a groundbreaking, obsessive, razor-sharp panorama of music writing crafted by one of the most influential critics of her generation.

Throughout her career, spanning more than two decades, Jessica Hopper, a revered and pioneering music critic, has examined women recording and producing music, in all genres, through an intersectional feminist lens. The First Collection of Criticism by a Living Female Rock Critic features oral histories of bands like Hole and Sleater Kinney, interviews with the women editors of 1970s-era Rolling Stone, and intimate conversations with iconic musicians such as Björk, Robyn, and Lido Pimienta. Hopper journeys through the truths of Riot Grrrl's empowering insurgence; decamps to Gary, Indiana, on the eve of Michael Jackson's death; explodes the grunge-era mythologies of Nirvana and Courtney Love; and examines the rise of emo. The collection also includes profiles and reviews of some of the most-loved, and most-loathed, women artists making music today: Fiona Apple, Kacey Musgraves, M.I.A., Miley Cyrus, Lana Del Rey.

In order for the music industry to change, Hopper writes, we need “the continual presence of radicalized women . . . being encouraged and given reasons to stay, rather than diminished by the music which glues our communities together.” The First Collection of Criticism by a Living Female Rock Critic―published to acclaim in 2015, and reissued now with new material and an introduction by Samantha Irby―is a rallying cry for women-centered history and storytelling, and a groundbreaking, obsessive, razor-sharp panorama of music writing crafted by one of the most influential critics of her generation.

FOSSE

FOSSE

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Now the FX limited series Fosse/Verdon starring Sam Rockwell and Michelle Williams with Lin-Manuel Miranda executive producing.

"Wasson is a smart and savvy reporter, and his book abounds with colorful firsthand tales." -- Janet Maslin, New York Times

"Fascinating . . . Wasson has taken complete control of his subject." -- Wall Street Journal

The only person ever to win Oscar, Emmy, and Tony awards in the same year, Bob Fosse revolutionized nearly every facet of American entertainment. His signature style would influence generations of performing artists. Yet in spite of Fosse's innumerable--including Cabaret, Pippin, All That Jazz, and Chicago, one of the longest-running Broadway musicals ever--his offstage life was shadowed by deep wounds and insatiable appetites.

To craft this richly detailed account, best-selling author Sam Wasson has drawn on a wealth of unpublished material and hundreds of sources: friends, enemies, lovers, and collaborators, many of them speaking publicly about Fosse for the first time. With propulsive energy and stylish prose, Fosse is the definitive biography of one of Broadway and Hollywood's most complex and dynamic icons.

"Spellbinding." --Entertainment Weekly

"Impeccably researched." --Vanity Fair

An NPR Best Book of the Year

Live Wires: A History of Electronic Music

Live Wires: A History of Electronic Music

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We live in an electronic world, saturated with electronic sounds. Yet, electronic sounds aren't a new phenomenon; they have long permeated our sonic landscape. What began as the otherworldly sounds of the film score for the 1956 film Forbidden Planet and the rarefied, new timbres of Stockhausen's Kontakte a few years later, is now a common soundscape in technology, media, and an array of musical genres and subgenres. More people than ever before can produce and listen to electronic music, from isolated experimenters, classical and jazz musicians, to rock musicians, sound recordists, and the newer generations of electronic musicians making hip-hop, house, techno, and ambient music. Increasingly we are listening to electronic sounds, finding new meanings in them, experimenting with them, and rehearing them as listeners and makers.

Live Wires explores how five key electronic technologies--the tape recorder, circuit, computer, microphone, and turntable--revolutionized musical thought. Featuring the work of major figures in electronic music--including everyone from Schaeffer, Varèse, Xenakis, Babbitt, and Oliveros to Eno, Keith Emerson, Grandmaster Flash, Juan Atkins, and Holly Herndon--Live Wires is an arresting discussion of the powerful musical ideas that are being recycled, rethought, and remixed by the most interesting electronic composers and musicians today.

MARTHA GRAHAM: WHEN DANCE BECA

MARTHA GRAHAM: WHEN DANCE BECA

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A major biography--the first in three decades--of one of the most important artistic forces of the twentieth century, the legendary American dancer and choreographer who upended dance, propelling the art form into the modern age, and whose profound and pioneering influence is still being felt today.

Brings together all the elements of Graham's colorful life...with wit, verve, critical discernment, and a powerful lyricism."--Mary Dearborn, acclaimed author of Ernest Hemingway

Time magazine called her "the Dancer of the Century." Her technique, used by dance companies throughout the world, became the first long-lasting alternative to the idiom of classical ballet. Her pioneering movements--powerful, dynamic, jagged, edgy, forthright--combined with her distinctive system of training, were the epitome of American modernism, performance as art. Her work continued to astonish and inspire for more than sixty years as she choreographed more than 180 works.

At the heart of Graham's work: movement that could express inner feeling.

Neil Baldwin, author of admired biographies of Man Ray ("Truly definitive . . . absolutely fascinating" --Patricia Bosworth) and Thomas Edison ("Absorbing, gripping, a major contribution to our understanding of a remarkable man and a remarkable era" --Robert Caro), gives us the artist and performer, the dance monument who led a cult of dance worshippers as well as the woman herself in all of her complexity.

Here is Graham, from her nineteenth-century (born in 1894) Allegheny, Pennsylvania, childhood, to becoming the star of the Denishawn exotic ballets, and in 1926, at age thirty-two, founding her own company (now the longest-running dance company in America).

Baldwin writes of how the company flourished during the artistic explosion of New York City's midcentury cultural scene; of Erick Hawkins, in 1936, fresh from Balanchine's School of American Ballet, a handsome Midwesterner fourteen years her junior, becoming Graham's muse, lover, and eventual spouse. Graham, inspiring the next generation of dancers, choreographers, and teachers, among them: Merce Cunningham and Paul Taylor.

Baldwin tells the story of this large, fiercely lived life, a life beset by conflict, competition, and loneliness--filled with fire and inspiration, drive, passion, dedication, and sacrifice in work and in dance creation.