"In a move designed to remind young people that culture can enrich one’s life and bring people together, Italian citizens are to get a €500 (£430) ‘culture bonus’ on their 18th birthday." Christopher Hooton, The Guardian
In my monthly email news round-up for May 2016, I shared a link to a video about Japanese director Akira Kurosawa.
Today I thought I’d also share it in a post for those who don’t see my emails.
In looking for an image to share with the post I found the most famous one from “Throne of Blood” (1957). At the same time I discovered something I hadn’t previously realised about Kurosawa (March 23rd, 1910 – September 6th, 1998) in that he has a total of three films based on plays by William Shakespeare; “Throne of Blood” (1957) based on “The Scottish Play” (the title of the play about a king in Scotland for any superstitious theatre types!); “The Bad Sleep Well” (1960) based on Hamlet; and “Ran” (1985) based on King Lear.
It is always humbling when a great artist pays tribute to another - somehow it makes us feel a line of time and a thread of connection across continents. Time and space shrink.
In this case my respect must also go to the owner of the Youtube channel "Every Frame A Painting”, the editor Tony Zhou, for this wonderful documentary where he shares insight into what he calls Kurosawa’s “innate understanding of movement and how to capture it onscreen.” Being an editor himself Zhou analyses the “movement of objects in the frame.”
“For the past ten years, I’ve been editing professionally. Yet one question always stumps me: “How do you know when to cut?” And I can only answer that it’s very instinctual. On some level, I’m just thinking and feeling my way through the edit. So today, I’d like to describe that process: how does an editor think and feel?” Tony Zhou
Any one like me who has a shared passion for dance and film will be needing to watch this video quite a few times!
Equally it is the year in which we commemorate the 150th anniversary of Shakespeare’s death, it is somehow therefore all the more poignant.
Akira Kurosawa: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=doaQC-S8de8
Another link with brief information on Akira Kurosawa: http://www.top10films.co.uk/archives/23101
Recently I shared on the Clear Insight Productions facebook page the image above. Then this week I was amused when a colleague in the USA, a writing coach called Elaine Bennett, picked it up and wrote about it in her blog (see here). She took my impulse to share it (which I did partly just because for me the words fuzzy felt just make me feel warm and cosy), and wrote about it in a way that wouldn't have occurred to me in a blog post entitled "You don't think like us". Apparently Phil Lucas is a British comedian - a fact that I hadn't even looked into. What had struck me was the way the image humourously captures that certain kind of determination to adapt to the circumstances come what may - something with which all "creatives" can identify. Elaine Bennett wrote about another aspect, that of how her corporate clients say, "We love talking to you... Because you don't think like us and you don't talk like us" - sometimes it is good to be reminded that being absorbed in culture gives access to ways of thinking that are vitally needed in the world. Hats off to creativity and to Phil Lucas who made a great piece of viral marketing.
Good news for the arts in London: “Supporting the arts and creative industries will be a core priority for my administration — right up there with housing, the environment and security — as one of the big themes that I want to define my time as Mayor Sadiq Khan,” he added. “There is no question London without culture would be a much poorer place and we can’t rest on our laurels. We face stiff global competition."
Great reminder about the space that the arts create for an audience, from the book "The Invisible Actor" of fantastic actor, Yoshi Oida, best known for his way of building bridges between Eastern and Western theatre techniques, and for his work with director Peter Brook.