Monday, March 05, 2018


Sunday, March 4, I was privileged to be in the audience for a wonderful concert by the Lincoln Center Chamber Society’s Artistic Directors, David Finkel on the cello and Wu Han, piano. It was another outstanding, moving, performance from the Music in The Park Series, in Saint Paul. It was easy to understand why these two rank among the most esteemed and influential classical musicians in the world. Their talent and synchronicity are outstanding with a nuanced, varied program featuring pieces by Beethoven, Adolphe, Auerbach, Mendelssohn, and Grieg.
The concerts for Music In The Park are held in a lovely venue with outstanding acoustics, Saint Anthony Park United Church of Christ. The series is more than thirty-five years old and has introduced Twin Cities residents to a wide variety of classical musicians in an intimate setting.
During the intermission, Andy and Linda Boss, long-time park residents and strong supporters of the series were honored.

Saturday, March 03, 2018


Tonight (3/3) we watched "The Darkest Hour," Britain and Winston Churchill's struggle in the early years of the Nazi invasion of Europe. Dunkirk was a difficult rescue of the British army and there were many who wanted to engage with Mussolini to plead for peace with Herr Hitler. Churchill, as portrayed by Gary Oldman, came unglued a few times but in the last analysis, as we all know, prevailed and Britain, wikth eventual assistance from America, crushed the Axis powers. The film is a stunning look at the machinations of the British government, a good story for those of us old enough to remember WWII. And, the film is an excellent lesson for those who are too young to remember that war. In addition to being a mesmerizing drama, well-acted by all involved, excellently and carefully produced with restraint and authenticity, the film has lesson for all of us today. I highly recommend the film THE DARKEST HOUR.

Friday, March 02, 2018


We attended a coffee concert of the Minnesota Orchestra this week (March 1). The Program was comprised of a varied number of pieces, all well-performed under the able direction of guest conductor, Juraj Valcuha.
The initial work was a lyrical, other-worldly vision of a mythical body of water by Anatol Lyadov. Calm, peaceful and misty, The Enchanted Lake, Opus 62, is the kind of music one might hear as background to a sensual massage.
Guest pianist Kirill Gerstein thrilled the audience and used all his skill and endurance to perform Rachmaninoff’s Piano Concerto Number 3 in D minor, with able assistance from the orchestra. The work carries themes of two world wars, the conflict in the Ukraine and visions of the Asian Steppes and other catchy tunes.
The final two pieces also provoked sustained ovations from the audience, Respighi’s Fountains of Rome and Debussy’s La Mer. All in all an excellent concert, well worth repeating.

Wednesday, January 17, 2018


When Edie Black’s son, Sam, is arrested for murder, Edie calls her cousin, Marjorie Kane, in Minneapolis. Kane, a former exotic dancer, turns immediately to her partner, fellow independent special investigator, Alan Lockem. The pair are successful unlicensed investigators who specialize in unusual projects that appear to have strange solutions.
In Grand Lac, Sam Black is accused of murdering a member of a small group of investors who have purchased large lots on a mountain outside of town in northern Idaho. One dark night one of the investors, Jack Ketchum, in a drunken rage, climbed aboard a large bulldozer and carved a raw track down the mountainside destroying vegetation on the property of each of the other owners. Days later his body is discovered in a ravine on the mountain, a bullet hole in his chest.
Sam Black is a young local stock day-trader who has stumbled on some shady city officials’ illegal activities. His mother, Edie, believes that may be the real reason Sam has been indicted for Ketchum’s murder. Alan and Marjorie jump feet first into a strange town of guns and civic corruption in a complicated effort to save Sam from prison or worse.