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Monster Mash: Alan Cumming leaves 'Spider-Man'; Babani's sweet success; diva undaunted by volcano

April 20, 2010 |  8:04 am

Cumming Goodbye, Green Goblin: Alan Cumming has withdrawn from the long-delayed Broadway musical "Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark" because of scheduling conflicts -- the same reason that prompted actress Evan Rachel Wood to leave the show in March. (Entertainment Weekly)

On a roll: David Babani has turned London's Menier Chocolate Factory into a theater hotspot, sending eight productions to the West End and three to Broadway -- including this season's "A Little Night Music" with Angela Lansbury and Catherine Zeta-Jones and "La Cage Aux Folles," which just opened with Kelsey Grammer and Douglas Hodge. (Los Angeles Times)

The show must go on: Ash from the Icelandic volcano is wreaking havoc on Europe's arts world, stranding performers such as Polish soprano Aleksandra Kurzak, who took a 19-hour cab ride from Warsaw to London so she could make the curtain for her appearance in Rossini's "Il Turco in Italia" at the Royal Opera House. (Bloomberg)

Foreign relations: Claiming politics are at play, Iran has demanded the British Museum to pay $300,000 in compensation after the museum delayed a loan to a Tehran exhibition of the 2,500-year-old Cyrus Cylinder -- a tablet considered to be the first declaration of human rights. (Daily Telegraph)

Dunes dispute: A court has struck down a building permit for a mansion being constructed next to a Cape Cod cottage once owned by Edward Hopper, preserving -- at least for now -- the celebrated view from the artist's studio window. (Boston Globe)

Also in the Los Angeles Times: Music critic Mark Swed attends recitals by Cameron Carpenter and Paul Jacobs -- two very different organists; it looks as if Steven Spielberg may not have needed to give up a Norman Rockwell painting that the FBI had listed as stolen; for Ring Festival LA, USC Thornton Opera is staging Wagner's obscure second opera, "Das Liebesverbot."

-- Karen Wada

Photo: Alan Cumming. Credit: Jemal Countess / Getty Images

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