Shirley Verrett – Artistic Versatility at its Penultimate Best

When Shirley Verrett switched fachs from mezzo-soprano to soprano much of the opera world didn’t know what to think since hardly ever did a singer make such a drastic transition while still in their vocal prime. One can only assume the constant hemming and hawing from those associated with such a pristine art form that got shaken up over the slightest bit of change must have worn out La Verrett over time. I made this presumption after walking along the fountained plaza of Lincoln Center one day in the late 1980’s to see banners being newly put on display along the cultural center’s entire perimeter which stated in big bold letters:

“SHIRLEY VERRETT – SINGER”

To which I murmured aloud, “What vocal coglioni!”
(If you’re not sure what that foreign word means, good.)

Through those simply worded banners, Shirley Verrett was telling every nay-sayer in the classical world in no uncertain terms to Fach Off.

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Brad Kronen’s Astrological Dating Guide “Love in the Stars” Now Individually Tailor Made for each Zodiacal Sign!

  Happy Autumn, Everyone! It’s the first week of October and for many of us this time of year is a reminder to begin motivating ourselves in preparation for a particular seasonal activity – Christmas Shopping! Brad thought he would ease some of the potential Yuletide pressure by letting everyone know his astrological dating guide […]

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Richard Strauss – A Most Mercurial Life

Richard Strauss is considered by most music historians to be one of the most innovative artists of the 20th century by virtue of his compositions of symphonic music, opera, tone poems, and lieder or art songs. His musical contributions have been interpreted as both ground-breakingly shocking through his use of dissonance and morally defiant choices of subject matter to the most beautifully sublime.

However, there are those who greatly downplay the influence of the German composer’s work based on actions he took which many interpret on the surface to have been made by a blatant hypocrite and/or weak willed opportunist. Among the musical elite of the present day there are a choice few in Strauss’ field that cannot reconcile the Mercurial composer’s actions with his art.  Their argument being deeply rooted in the following moral dilemma:

Should a person’s art be praised and appreciated unto itself despite that person’s actions being interpreted as a willingness to overlook the overt displays of evil that took place over the course of his or her lifetime?

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Neil Patrick Harris and David Burtka: Life is but a Same Signed Dream

In the Foreward section of my book about Astrology and Relationships in the 21st century, “Love in the Stars” I reveal my personal take on same sign dating. To quote myself:

“As far as dating your own sign, there are a few exceptions (actually, just 1) but a good rule of thumb when considering dating another who is the same sign as your sexy self: Look at it as dating your own gene pool – would you date your cousin?”

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Brad Kronen’s Welcome to the Zodiac Series: Gemini

Gemini is the first representative of the element of Air which utilizes the functions of the rational mind as its primary tool to get through life. Not surprisingly, the foundation behind this most mentally agile of signs’ key phrase is rationally based – “I THINK”.

Mix all that mutably mental material up and you have the makings of a Gemini with a razor sharp mind kept forever young by approaching each day as a chance to learn something new about the world or on the unevolved side of the dualistic fence, a Twin born person being the perpetual motor mouth whose non-stop babble reflects just how much they actually know of a whole lot of nuthin’ .

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Muammar the Mutable: Contradicting Views regarding the Life of Muammar Gaddafi – Part III

  Muammar the Mutable: Contradicting Views regarding the life of Muammar Gaddafi Part III by Brad Kronen True to its former leader’s duality, the new flag of Libya is its old flag before Gaddafi took over in 1969. Let’s hope this does not signify: same day, same totalitarian style rulership, different flag. (travelagencyguide.com)     […]

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Muammar the Mutable: Contradicting Views regarding the Life of Muammar Gaddafi – Part II

Muammar the Mutable: Contradicting Views regarding the life of Muammar Gaddafi Part II by Brad Kronen The New Yorker at least intimated that Muammar Gaddafi was portrayed to the American public by the Western media with a one-sided, scare tactic approach.     “The Arab world, from the marbled palaces of its leaders to the […]

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Muammar the Mutable: Contradicting Views regarding the Life of Muammar Gaddafi – Part I

Muammar the Mutable: Contradicting Views regarding the life of Muammar Gaddafi Part I by Brad Kronen The American media crystallized the vilified persona of Muammar Gaddafi during the Reagan years, as in this cover of Newsweek from July of 1981. (businessinsider.com)     The revered performance artist and culture maven, the great Laurie Anderson, has […]

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