Haines Logo Text
Column Archive
January 23, 2021:


Bruce Kimmel Photograph bk's notes

Well, dear readers, I am sitting here like so much fish, listening via the Tube of You to a short one-act opera by Saint Saens entitled La Princesse Jaune (The Princess Jaune) and I’m finding it delightfully delightful, an opera comique with wonderfully tuneful music, like all the Saint Saens I’ve heard. In fact, just prior to it I’d listened to Saint Saens’ Requiem, which is a wonderful work with a stunning Agnus Dei, just gorgeous, also on the Tube of You. And even earlier I’d listened to Verdi’s Otello, which I must say is my favorite now of Verdi’s things that I’ve heard. A wonderful recording that was on RCA in Living Stereo circa 1960 with Jon Vickers and Tito Gobbi, with Tullio Serafin conducting. Much earlier, I did a couple of other tiny revisions to the ending of the book – I shortened one speech that happens before the stuff I changed because I realized it needed to be adjusted due to the changes, and deleting the two sentences I deleted helped everything, actually. I deleted one small sentence from the stuff I’d already changed because it took away from the fun of the line before it and dissipated it. I don’t know about you, but I don’t like when things dissipate other things. I don’t even like the word dissipate, do you? Then I called Muse Margaret to read her those changes and she thought they all worked really well. I also viewed Doug Haverty’s cover design and I liked it very much save for the font, but he gave me two other choices and I chose, and Muse Margaret agreed with the choice. I think Doug liked the fancier font, but I felt the simpler font spoke to the lead character better. Otherwise, I’m now back to listening to Samson et Dalila, which I’d decided to listen to again and which got me investigating the other operas. I really like Samson and Dalila ain’t so bad either. Rim shot.

Yesterday, was a perfectly decent day. I only got six hours of sleep, I answered e-mails and did a bit of work on project one, and then did the small book revisions, which I think helped. After that, I had a few telephonic conversations, then made hot dogs again and those were good. Then I got a haircut and boy are my arms tired. Rim shot. I really needed it and now I am once again kempt – Once Again Kempt – that’s the title of my next novel.

After that, I went and picked up one lonely package and came right back home. It was quite chilly here yesterday. Was that a non-sequitur? Or was it merely a sequitur? Rim shot. What am I, Henny Youngman all of a sudden?

After that, I got a call from editor Marshall Harvey, who told me the first cut was done. But rather than go over to watch it in the evening and then try to do any finessing it may need seemed like not the right thing to do, so I’ll see it at noon o’clock today and I am VERY excited to do so. Hartley Powers created a delightful main title thing and Richard Allen scored it and I think that will work great. Once we lock the picture, then the entire sound files goes to a sound engineer to finesse and smooth out everything. Then that gets laid back on the locked video and that will be that. Hartley is also creating the end credits and one sequence that has special effects. So, we’re gettin’ it done, bit by bit, putting it together. What am I, Stephen Sondheim all of a sudden?

Then I made some white rice with butter and onions and that was very good and brought me up to 1000 calories. After that, I sat on my couch like so much fish.

Last night, I finished watching Laurent Petitgirard’s opera of Joseph Merrick, The Elephant Man. For me, it has real libretto issues now that I’ve heard/seen it with subtitles, and the production is from hunger, kind of a cross between Sweeney Todd and every Les Miz wannabe with some Side Show thrown in, along with lots of smoke and the kind of lighting I loathe. The director did stuff that was so confusing you just wanted to say what story are you actually trying to tell. I didn’t like the treatment of Dr. Treves and the sung stuff for the Elephant Man is very dissonant – I would have taken the opposite approach, but I didn’t write it. Much of the music sounds like Petitgirard’s film music, so that was all fine. I’m not sure what’s at play with so many operas casting women in men’s roles – here a soprano plays the Elephant Man – she was very good, thought, but what’s with that?  It also goes on a bit too long – thirty minutes out of it would make it two hours and that would help. I think had it been a great production I would have enjoyed it more – certainly I enjoyed just hearing the CD more.

After that, I began listening to all the opera stuff and the rest you know because you’ve been reading the notes and are with it and happening.

I must tell you that my hopes for Facebook becoming more pleasant after Wednesday are apparently not to be. The negativity is astonishing, actually. Everyone keeps posting about the former president, the stuff in the senate, and everything but what President Biden is doing. And the media is disgusting, and boy did that happen quickly. The big New York Times story yesterday was that Biden was wearing a Rolex. I mean, whoever did that story should be fired. We don’t need four years of tan suit reportage, if you get my meaning and I know you do because I’m about as subtle as a ten-dollar hooker playing the xylophone with her teeth. Rim shot. And there’s one fellow I know who swore he was leaving Facebook and that we wouldn’t see him for a while because he’d had it – that lasted approximately thirty-five minutes. Then he said he would never speak of the former president again. That last about eight minutes. I just don’t understand people – I guess they’re not happy if they don’t have their Facebook daily outrage. I gotta tell you. Right now, I’m actually picturing a ten-dollar hooker playing the xylophone with her teeth – I like it.

Today, I’ll be up by ten-thirty, I’ll do whatever needs doing, and then I’ll head over to Marshall Harvey’s home environment to see the first cut of project one. I can’t wait. We’ll watch straight through with no interruptions, and then we’ll start at the top and go through it and figure out if we want to futz and finesse. I’m sure there’ll be things to do but that’s the nature of these things. So, that will probably be a good portion of the day. Then I’ll hopefully pick up some packages, I’ll eat something calorie-friendly but fun, and then I can watch, listen, and relax.

Tomorrow, I’m hoping to relax, and we’ll see if anything comes up that needs doing. Next week is planning the March Kritzerland and hopefully putting the finishing touches on project one and choosing our air date. I think it will only be available for a short time, most likely under a week. I have two possible premiere dates and I want to hold that information for a bit because the second I announce our date I guarantee you that suddenly, out of nowhere, there will be five other things that announce that their thing is happening on that very date at that very time. It’s happened every single time, especially with one person. That person has already said they have a video in the works, but they haven’t announced the date yet. I’d bet good money that when we announce, that will be the very date. And I’m probably not going to choose a Sunday. I’m excited to unveil this thing.

Well, dear readers, I must take the day, I must do the things I do, I must, for example, be up by ten-thirty, do whatever needs doing, see the first cut, futz and finesse the first cut, hopefully pick up packages, eat, and then watch, listen, and relax. Today’s topic of discussion: What are the worst productions you’ve seen of well-known plays and musicals? Let’s have loads of lovely postings, shall we, whilst I hit the road to dreamland, where I shall dream of a ten-dollar hooker playing the xylophone with her teeth. Rim shot.

Search BK's Notes Archive:
© 2001 - 2021 by Bruce Kimmel. All Rights Reserved