Saturday, November 22, 2014

I Don't Need TV

Over the the last two days I've enjoyed such quality entertainment it simply solidifies my sense of doing very, very well without TV.  I'm currently taking a film course at the Academy for Lifelong Learning called Wit of the Brits. In this case wit isn't limited to comedy. Yesterday's film was The Madness of King George, based on fact about George III (played by brilliantly by Nigel Hawthorne, who, incidentally in his sad, thoughtful moments looked a lot like Prince Charles to me). I saw it in the late '90s when it was new and truly enjoyed seeing it again.  All the performanes are wonderful, including a then not well known Helen Miran as his queen -- the first of a series of roles as Britsh queens in which she has excelled. The harsh treatment of George was experimental and possibly kind at the time.  His illness would have abated it seems, as it was porphyria. 

In the evening I went to a monthly gathering called Blithe Spirits where the somewhat changing group bring poems and short plays to read. We had 17 people which is twice the usual group and heard many short pieces. The second half was the first act of The Bald Soprano, a play I've been wanting to have them read. I printed a copy from the Net and found a book of Ionesco plays at a used book store and someone else found a copy at a library. It's a hilarious surreal farce and was given a very decent cold reading -- which I was not involved in so I could just enjoy it.

This afternoon I went to a simulcast from the Metropolitan Opera of The Barber or Seville which is my favorite comic opera because of the richness of the music (although some numbers are repeated a few more times than seems absolutely necessary). Bartlett Sher did the stage direction. At the height of a fine career as a director of stage comedy he crammed in every possible comic effect from prat falls to wonderful facial expressions by all the singer at all times.They were always in character. The bel canto singing was as delicious as sweetened whipped cream

So much quality entertainment in so short a time is almost too much. But I'm bearing up admirably.
And looking forward to an evening of quiet reading.


Lynn Guardino said...

I hear you June. There is so much to do and see and participate in,right here on the Cape. No excuse for sitting home, watching T.V. We were shopping yesterday morning and we stopped to look at a huge, huge T.V. that my husband knew was on sale for a very good price. Mind you, we were only looking at it because we would not buy a television set that would take over the decor of our home as that would.Along came a man who remarked that this was rated very well by Consumer Reports, a well-meaning shopper who might have been in the market for a new one. Anyway, when I told him that we only watched an hour of T.V. a day, he shook his head as if I had told him that we had just killed his mother in the parking lot. Sad, how many people are too addicted to that habit and miss so much of what is good in life. Keep up your good work!

June Calender said...

Thanks,Lynn, you know I agree about TV. Happily these opera simulcasts are ever more popular. The theatre was very nearly full, and Carmen a couple of weeks ago totally sold out. Many people like the man you chatted with stay home and feel their money has been well spent on a big TV. But I think Cape Cod is an unusual place with many of go to live arts events of all kinds.

Ladydy5 aka: Diane Yates said...

I really don't think you have time for TV. I wish I could say that but I got hooked on it from 8P to 11 PM. Some rather good things on there while others strictly mindless. I did get off using a dish receiver and only go with my TV antenna which limits tv too. You do have a place with live art events in Cape Cod which I find very fortunate for you.

June Calender said...

You're right, Diane, we are amazingly fortunate here. And there's lots more I could go to I had endless time and money.