Sunday, July 14, 2019

MFA-Toulouse-Lautrec Exhibition-2019

Toulouse-Lautrec and the Stars of Paris

Museum of Fine Arts-Boston-April 7-August 4, 2019

The exhibition explores the celebrity culture of Lautrec’s time and the artist’s fascination with its stars, both the roles that they played and their personal lives. With expressive lines and brazen colors, the artist captured the spectacle of the fin de siècle in evocative posters, prints, and paintings. “Toulouse-Lautrec and the Stars of Paris” is organized in partnership with the Boston Public Library

  There were around 70-plus paintings, sculptures, photographs, artifacts by Lautrec contemporaries (e.g., Degas, Picasso, Mary Cassatt, etc.) alongside 100-plus Lautrec works to compare how artists portrayed turn-of-the-century Paris.

MFA--Toulouse-Lautrec and the Stars of Paris: Click

Boston Magazine: Click

Boston Globe: Click

Video "Welcome to 1890's Paris Nightlife: Click

Wall Street Journal: Click

Widewalls: Click

Elle Decor: Click

Thursday, July 04, 2019

Encore Boston Harbor

Encore Boston Harbor--June 30, 2019

For someone who was never curious enough to visit Foxwoods, Mohegan Sun or even Las Vegas, there I was at Encore the first week it opened! I found it glitzy, opulent, gaudy, tacky, yet exciting. The casino and resort opened on June 23, 2019, at a cost pf $2.5 billion on 33 acres. This is a resort with a casino, hotel, harbor walk, restaurants, spa, retail outlets, meeting and convention space. Public amenities of the year-round harbor walk include a picnic park, paths for bikers and pedestrians, viewing decks, waterfront dining and retail, a performance lawn, floral displays and boat decks.

 Approaching the building

Carousel at the entrance 

Casino main floor

 One of numerous ladies' rooms

 Stairway to high-limit players only

 Stairway to one of many dining venues

 Popeye sculpture by Jeff Koons

Mary and Ken

Wednesday, April 24, 2019

Itzhak Perlman, Evgeny Kissen-4/22/19


Celebrity Series of Boston

Itzhak Perlman   violin
Evgeny Kissin    piano

Symphony Hall Boston-April 22, 2019

A meeting of Masters:

Image result for itzhak perlman

  Image result for evgeny kissin

There are superstar duos and then there are the megastar duos like the team of violinist Itzhak Perlman and pianist Evgeny Kissin. In a rare joint appearance, these legendary virtuosi demonstrate their tremendous musicianship in an evening of unforgettable music-making.              

Mozart        Sonata No.23 in D Major
Brahms      Sonata No.2 in A Major


Beethoven     Sonata No.9 in A Major

Two encores:
Tchaikovsky   Lensky's aria from Eugene Onegin
 Manuel de Falla   Spanish Dance

Susan Miron's review for the arts fuse: Click here:

Photo: Robert Torres

Mary, Evgeny Kissen, Eleanor Pao at post-performance Circle Reception and Dinner

Thursday, April 04, 2019

Met Opera in HD-Die Walküre

Metropolitan Opera in HD

Die Walküre by Richard Wagner

Die Walküre is one of the 4 operas in Wagner's masterpiece Ring Cycle. This was an exquisite performance: the orchestral score, the drama, the suspense, the magnificent cast...5 hours of beautiful music.

Conductor      Philippe Jordan

Brünnhilde     Christine Goerke
Sieglinde        Eva-Maria Westbrock
Frika             Jamie Barton
Siegmund       Stuart Skelton
Wotan           Greer Grimsley
Hunding        Günther Groissböck

Deborah Voigt was the Live in HD Hostess

David Salazar writes for the Opera Wire: Click here

Corinna da Fonseca-Wollheim writes for the NY Times: Click 

In sharp contrast James Jordan writes for the Observer: Click

Anne Midgette for the Washington Post: Click

George Loomis for the Financial Times: Click

Monday, March 25, 2019

San Francisco Symphony 3/24/19

Celebrity Series of Boston

San Francisco Symphony

Michael Tilson Thomas, conductor

Christian Tetzlaff, violin 

Sunday, March 24, 2019
Symphony Hall

The acclaimed San Francisco Symphony returned for their final appearance under the baton of visionary music director Michael Tilson Thomas, who has announced his retirement in 2020. The program features "an artist who considers the ordinary unacceptable" (New York Times) and the brilliant violinist Christian Tetzlaff, who has more recently dazzled audiences in recital and chamber performances.

This performance marks the San Francisco Symphony's eighth concert with the Celebrity Series. They made their debut in 1947. They returned in 2014 under the baton of Michael Tilson Thomas with Gil Shaham as violin soloist. Click here:

 This is Thomas's fifth performance with Celebrity Series; he made his debut in 1979 with the Buffalo Symphony Orchestra. For Christian Tetzlaff this was his sixth performance for Celebrity Series; he made his debut in 1991.


M. Tilson Thomas   Agnegram

Mendelssohn  Violin Concerto in E minor, Opus 64

Beethoven    Symphony No. 3 in E Flat-Major, "Eroica"

Both Tetzlaff and Tilson Thomas and the orchestra rewarded our enthusiasm with encores. 

Maestro Tilson Thomas on his composition Agnegram:
  "Anegram was written to celebrate the 90th birthday of the San Francisco Symphony's extraordinary patron and friend Agnes Albert and is a portrait of her sophisticated and indefatigably enthusiastic spirit. It is entirely composed of themes derived from the spelling of her name." 
Our program gave very detailed information on the composition.

Charles T Downey review for Washington Classical Review: A heroic sendoff for Michael Tilson Thomas 
Click here

This is an interesting article on Michael Tilson Thomas:
Click here

David Wininger of the Boston Globe writes "The second act of Michael Tilson Thomas": Click here

Celebrity Series invited us to a post-performance reception and dinner for Circle Members.

After a wonderful evening of music, camaraderie, good friends


Thursday, January 17, 2019

Adriana Lecouvreur at the Met

Cilea's Adriana Lecouvreur

Metropolitan Opera 
 January 1-January 26 at the Metropolitan Opera, Lincoln Center

Conductor    Gianandra Noseda
Production    Sir David McVicar 
Adriana Lecouvreur   Anna Netrebko 
Princesss of Boulillon   Anita Rachvelishvili
Maurizio                Pitor Beczala
The Abbé                Carlo Bosi
Michonnet               Ambrogi Maestri
Prince of Bouillon       Maurizio Muraro 

Co-Production of the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, London; Gran Teatre del Liceu Barcelona; Wiener Staatsoper; San Francisco Opera; L'Opera National de Paris 
 Anna Netrebko, left, with mezzo-soprano Anita Rachvelishvili  
Sara Krulwich photo/The New York Times 

Piotr Beczala as Maurizio and Anna Netrebko as Adriana Lecouvreur
Sara Krulwich photo/New York Times

Netrebko: Fedra's Monologue  Video by Metropolitan Opera

Anthony Tommasini's review--click here:

Anita Rachvelishvili is "without doubt the best Verdi mezzo-soprano today on the planet," according to the conductor Riccardo Muti (whom I hold in high esteem).

Zachary Woolfe writes about Anita Rachvelishvili for the NY Times:

Sunday, April 29, 2018

Celebrity Series Shine! Gala

Celebrity Series of Boston
Shine! Gala

Saturday, April 28, 2018

Cocktail Reception
Followed by dinner  

Beautiful centerpieces

Elegantly presented and delicious dinner

Friday, April 27, 2018

Los Angeles Philharmonic

Celebrity Series of Boston
Los Angeles Philharmonic
Gustavo Dudamel

Symphony Hall--April 25, 2018

Esa Pekka Salonen   Pollux
Edgard Varèse       Amérique  


Shostakovich   Symphony No. 5
                   in D minor, Opus 47

The majestic orchestra filled the extended stage. The first 5 rows of the orchestra had been removed. The men were handsome in their White-Tie and Tails and the ladies were elegant in their black ensembles.

"Los Angeles Philharmonic is the most important orchestra in the country."  The NY Times

"If ever an orchestra was riding the crest of a wave, it is the Los Angeles Philharmonic." The Times (London)

Gustavo Dudamel's arrival in Los Angeles in 2009 was an earthshaking event. Dudamel and the Los Angeles Philharmonic have lived up to our high expectations, delivering on their artistic promise. I notice that their performance at the Philharmonia in Paris for May 5th is completely sold out.


Saturday, April 14, 2018

An Evening with Audra McDonald

Celebrity Series of Boston presents 

An Evening with Audra McDonald

Friday, April 13, 2018

Symphony Hall

Brian Hertz, Piano; Mark Vanderpoel, Bass; Gene Lewin, Drums

Six-time Tony award winner, two Grammy awards and an Emmy award, Audra charmed her audience with her rich interpretations of songs interspersed with warm, friendly anecdotes and interactions with her audience.

Remembering how she felt on 9/11, she recounted how important it is to focus on what matters in life and decided the answer is in the song "Make Someone Happy" each day! 

I eagerly anticipated her rendition of my favorite "I Could Have Danced All Night" in which she encouraged her audience to join in on the second chorus.

Audra absolutely sparkled for nonstop 90 minutes of the American Songbook plus an encore of "Over The Rainbow."

  Recalling how I was enthralled by her performance in March 2015, I was eagerly anticipating this return visit. I was not disappointed! Click  

Nancy Grossman review for BWW click here:


Tuesday, October 24, 2017

Orchestra dell'Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilla--Rome

Celebrity Series of Boston 

Orchestra dell'Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilla--Rome

Sir Antonio Pappano  music director 

Martha Argerich         piano
             "the reigning high priestess of the piano"

Symphony Hall
Sunday, October 22, 2017

Verdi                 'Sinfonia' to Aida
Prokofiev          Piano Concerto No. 3
encore: Maestro Pappano joined Argerich in a four-hands rendition of "Laideronnette, Empress of the Pagodas" from Ravel's "Mother Goose"


Respighi        "Fontane di Roma"

Respighi           "I Pini di Roma"

encores: Sibelius's "Valse Triste"
               Rossini's   "William Tell Overture

I was eagerly anticipating this performance because I had attended a concert by this magnificent orchestra in Paris in April 2016, and now with the addition of the legendary pianist Martha Argerich I was ecstatic!

Paris in April 2016  Click:


Jeremy Eichler for the Boston Globe Click:
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               Jonathan Blumhofer for The Arts Fuse Click:


Ken Ross for MASSLIVE.COM states that Martha Argerich remains the greatest living pianist! Click:

Photo/Robert Torres

Following the performance Celebrity Series feted us to an elegant reception and a seated sumptuous dinner in the Higginson Room. The charismatic Sir Antonio Pappano joined us and mingled with the guests, participating in our lively discussions and posing for photographs with us. Legendary and elusive pianist Martha Argerich declined our invitation.


Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Cruise LA--Hawaii--LA-2017

Los Angeles to Hawaii to Los Angeles

May 23--June 10, 2017

May 23 Los Angeles Marriott Airport

May 24--June 9 Crystal Serenity

June 10--Los Angeles Marriott Airport

Sailing into Honolulu Harbor


Jean-Michel Cousteau--guest lecturer

Mary-Crystal Serenity Dining room

Camille Williams, Susan Allen, Nicola, our waiter from Serbia

Ensenada, Mexico

Mary--Dining Room

Chief Electrical Engineer--John Rivers
Roberta Miller, Sandy Hoffman, Josh Miller, Mary,
Camille Williams, Susan Allen, Marty Hoffman

absent from photo--Sue Taylor, Tom Taylor

Monday, April 10, 2017

Shine! On the Harbor Gala-April 8, 2017

Shine! On the Harbor Gala

Celebrity Series of Boston Gala
April 8, 2017

The Loft at the Innovation and Design Building

A glittering evening on the harbor that shined a light on all that Celebrity Series brings to Boston 

Co-Chairs: Stephanie L Brown
                     Susan Thonis 

Shine! Paddle Bid
After Party

Shine! On The Harbor Gala video


Monday, March 13, 2017

Cancun--February 27-March 8, 2017

Cancun, Mexico

February 27--March 8, 2017

JW Marriott Resort & Spa....Mary
CasaMagna Marriott Cancun....Linda

Lagoons, pools, white sand beach that stretched for miles, turquoise/aqua ocean with roaring waves

Flamenco dancing exhibition in the lobby lounge of the CasaMagna

Argentine tango exhibition in the La Capilla restaurant in CasaMagna

Argentine Tango video from performance at La Capilla

Gustino Restaurant in the JW Marriott--an upscale restaurant with exquisite service and ambiance

Sedona Grill in the JW Marriott--one night Mexican Buffet Night with entertainment by a trio

La Capilla in the CasaMagna Hotel--(Argentine restaurant) I had the best filet mignon I have ever had.

Dessert at the La Capilla

Sasi Thai restaurant contiguous to the CasaMagna

Mikado...Japanese restaurant contiguous to the CasaMagna

The twin Marriott hotels offered complimentary golf cart transportation to/from the hotels.