Macaulay Seminar One at Brooklyn College
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Symphony Space: Selected Shorts

Going in to this performance I didn’t know what to expect, but knowing that Mario Batali was going to come out got me excited for the event. When the event started I remained fully engaged to understand what exactly the subject of the performances would be and how they were going to execute, turns out what they were basically going to do was present stories about food and its impact on their lives. I thought this was very interesting because the stories seemed like something you would tell your friend over a cup of coffee or on the phone. The fact that there was a whole magazine and performance dedicated to this subject made me appreciate its importance. I noticed it sort of integrated the beauty of story telling and the passion people have for food in to one, which I enjoyed because it’s something people would easily dismiss, but in fact can hold an importance in your life.

My favorite story was Mario Batali’s The Perfect Moment because of what he emphasized about cooking. To create these culinary masterpieces you have to make sure that you tend to it and pay attention to it in order to capture all the flavors into one perfect moment. His vivid description on the fennel bulbs actually encouraged me to try to cook that vegetable, I’ve always been hesitant on using it because of its complexity, but I’ll try to capture its perfection over the break.

Another story that I really enjoyed was Pan-American which was read by David Cross I believe. The story itself revolved around a different aspect of food, which was the instruments used to make it and how it can hold a sentimental value for anyone who cooks in specific pots and pans. I can sort of relate to this story because my family has a grinder that takes spices and grinds them in a fine powder and from generation to generation we have never washed it because it holds a musky aroma that brings a sort of nostalgic feeling, and the flavors are just so concentrated that it would be a crime to wash it. So I really enjoyed that story. All in all, I would definitely go to this event again. It’s something I might do on a boring Friday night if it just so happens to come up, because I loved the casual atmosphere, and just the fact that everyone’s coming together for one purpose, the appreciation of food and storytelling is something I really enjoy.

December 16, 2013   No Comments


Coming into this class I thought talking about art would come easily, and after the first couple of classes I thought we were sort of done with the topic as a whole. But that was not true. The way we have attacked every angle of how we can view or experience art and still have only scratched the surface of it, has stimulated my mind in to viewing things differently. The solid line that I have mentally had for what is considered art has blurred, and as a result I have taken this mentality outside of the classroom, by noticing the little things that I would, before, dismiss quickly.

While waiting for a computer at the local library I noticed the mural that was painted above the computers. I’ve probably walked past that mural a hundred times? But never once have I taken the time to look at it in such great detail. It’s supposed to show the progression of America from when it was an agricultural society to an industrial society. I didn’t understand why they chose that to paint as the mural in the library, but then I thought maybe that’s when the viewer comes in, to find the connection. This thought process has now, as I’m typing, made me question: What is more important: creating a theme when it comes to art or finding it? Maybe the two of them come hand in hand?

This was especially an underlying question when curating for Snapshot NYC. What common theme can we find in the 400 photos that came from all the Macaulay students from all 5 boroughs? We decided on branches and roots to emphasize the common theme that everyone in this program is from this common seed and we eventually branch out to different parts of NYC that is important to us, whether it be a public space (photo of the skyline) or a private space (photo of the meal they had that day). All in all every photo, even though some weren’t taken in the best quality, meant something to the person who took it. And after being a part of Snapshot NYC I’ve learned to appreciate the process of finding that common theme everyone can connect to.

December 9, 2013   No Comments

Mohammed’s Radio

I genuinely enjoyed the play Mohammed’s Radio and when I read it, I felt like I had fully satisfied how I wanted to view each character in the story, so I didn’t think seeing the play act out in front of me would make a huge difference. I was wrong. I really enjoyed the reading of the script of each character in front of me. It was very intimate, because it wasn’t the set that was being shown or the over the top stage and lighting, it was just the talented actors all sitting together and acting out this wonderful play and giving the spotlight to each character. Very beautiful. A distinguishing aspect that I discovered from how I read the play and seeing it played out in front of me was how different I pictured the “high and low” of the dialogue. It’s not really something I can explain by typing, but the way the character decided to stretch out the sentences was very different than how I read it, so that was very interesting. All in all, even though I had already read the play I was fully engaged throughout the whole performance and even teared up when Alice was talking about Joe being the first one to say sorry, it got to me when I read the play, and I told myself not to but I caved. I couldn’t help it, that part was so important to me. My favorite part of the trip however was after the performance when all the actors came out of their character and began to explain the significance of each character. I loved that we got to ask questions and have a one on one with the writer and director, it made the performance all the more memorable. I had a lot of fun and there were some funny moments. I even got Stephen Gracia to sign my program! I’m actually going to look into these kinds of events and see if I can go in my free time because I got so into it, I would definitely go to these “script-reading” aka work of art sessions again. This and the Juilliard Jazz Quartet are neck to neck the best trips so far in my Macaulay journey. Thank You Professor Ugoretz.

November 22, 2013   No Comments

9/11 and Vietnam Memorial

Walking in to the 9/11 memorial I was surprised at the security measures that were taken before getting to see the actual place the metal detectors and the security guard at every corner actually got me a little paranoid. When approaching the memorial the sound of the water was so beautiful. It was so refreshing and I feel like the water coming down just gave off a sense of relief. The day the towers fell, I remember, it was a hot day and just the smoke and fire must’ve made that area an unbearable place to be, so I really liked the way water was utilized in this memorial. I also didn’t realize the massive amount of people who had lost their lives until I walked down the whole memorial. I liked how the names were the focal point of the memorial. The discussion we had in class made me realize that after death, that’s all a person really has as remembrance and to put the names on the memorial is something every memorial should have to pay homage for those who died.
The Vietnam memorial although it wasn’t very well maintained had its own beauty. I liked the location of the place it was kind of eerie with the inscribed letters of people who passed away on one side and the life and busy roads of New York on the other.
For me, the 9/11 memorial had more of an impact because it was a memorial for something that happened to my home, New York. I think it’s very rare to have a memorial be located at the exact place where the event happened and that’s what makes the 9/11 memorial all the more beautiful and emotional.

November 6, 2013   No Comments

The Metropolitan Opera

The Metropolitan Opera is gorgeous! I’ve walked past it many times when I come to the city, but I hadn’t been as close to it as I was during the night of the opera. It’s so grand. Anyways the actual show was great too. The set was my favorite part because it was so far from what I was expecting and the funny thing is I felt like it depicted the forest more than a couple of cardboard tress would’ve. I especially liked the concept of the doors it gave the stage depth and I think the trees stabbed in to the doors was the set designers trying to be funny since it was one of Shakespeares’ silly plays. I also really liked the costumes towards the second half of the show because they got a little more opera-esque. Since I’ve read the play I knew what was going so I guess I wasn’t really watching that pan out. What really caught my attention throughout the night was how everything was presented, I’m glad I watched it that way though. I liked differentiating what I would’ve seen at the theater and what I saw at the opera.

October 25, 2013   No Comments