Seabourn Club Herald - - IN THIS ISSUE -

Se­abourn sug­gests how to spend your down time.


Cass Neary, the ni­hilis­tic, crime-solv­ing pho­tog­ra­pher in Hand’s art­house mys­ter­ies, is ag­ing well, or at least burn­ing out in style; she de­scribes her­self in her new­est out­ing as “the ghost of punk, haunt­ing the twenty-first cen­tury in dis­in­te­grat­ing black-and-white.” Hav­ing won le­gions of fans in Hand’s pre­vi­ous books, Gen­er­a­tion Loss and Avail­able Dark, Neary tries to re­turn to her old loves and her old vices,but in­stead de­scends through the un­der­belly of Lon­don’s avant garde — pass­ing deal­ers in art, rock and nar­cotics on her way down — into the dim be­gin­nings of hu­man art in the Ice Age. Hand’s knack for po­etic de­tail is as good as her anti-hero­ine’s eye for images.


Since the 1500s, the pil­lars and arches of the Bue­nav­ista Palace have looked over this Span­ish city; within the last 20 years it has been re­built as a tem­ple to Mod­ernist mas­ter Pablo Pi­casso. Málaga is where the painter was born, and the mu­seum dis­plays more than 200 paint­ings, ce­ram­ics, sculp­tures, draw­ings and en­grav­ings from his fam­ily’s col­lec­tion, as well as other Mod­ernist works. With new win­dows, airy rooms and struc­tural ad­di­tions, the com­plex is an art­work in it­self, win­ning a 2005 De­sign Award from the Amer­i­can In­sti­tute of Ar­chi­tects. It rests at the base of Gi­bral­faro Hill in the old town, be­low the Moor­ish Al­caz­aba and next to a Re­nais­sance cathe­dral and Ro­man theater, on Calle San Agustín — the same street where Pi­casso’s fa­ther worked as cu­ra­tor of the city’s mu­seum.


Yo-Yo Ma has be­come some­thing be­tween a force of na­ture and an in­dus­try unto him­self, so it’s good to hear him con­stantly find­ing new ways to bring his cello to ever more ex­pres­sive heights. He’s teamed up with dozens of mas­ter mu­si­cians — from Amer­ica’s Jef­frey Beecher (dou­ble bass) and Spain’s Cristina Pato ( gaita) to Le­banon’s Hadi Elde­bek ( oud) and China’s Wu Man ( pipa) — to per­form pieces by ar­rangers and com­posers from 22 coun­tries, draw­ing on in­ter­na­tional tra­di­tions to cre­ate a “new mu­si­cal lan­guage.” This is a bold ex­per­i­ment, even moreso since the al­bum goes along with a fea­ture­length doc­u­men­tary. Luck­ily, it works. Ex­per­i­ments can some­times be clin­i­cal; star soloists like Abi­gail Wash­burn, Toumani Di­a­bete, and Bill Frisell el­e­vate these pieces out of the realm of nov­elty and into some­thing more like pure mu­si­cal ex­pres­sion.

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