Over the next few weeks, I’ll be sharing some of my favorite things to read, watch, and listen to over the holidays in a series I’m calling Make The Season Bright.
I recently sat down to watch the Pacific Northwest Ballet’s 1986 film version of the Nutcracker and really enjoyed it. Maurice Sendak’s set design and costumes were just as impressive as I expected they would be and the many film-version-only transitions are stunning! PNB’s Nutcracker is available in its entirety on Netflix and YouTube.
“Maurice and I went back to the original Nutcracker story by E.T.A. Hoffman and incorporated much more of the story into the production. Clara and Herr Drosselmeier will be the central figures though the story essentially remains the same. The essence of the Nutcracker story is really a fantasy dreamed by Clara, a young girl on the verge of growing up. The ballet is seen unfolding through her eyes, in an atmosphere tinged with mystery, where there are no boundaries between dream and reality. We have worked on the concept of this new production for two years. Seeing our plans become a reality for our company is an incredible accomplishment—one we feel will be well worth it for all our Nutcracker fans.” — Choreographer Kent Stowell, November 1983
A good glimpse of the set design from the more recent stage production(s):
“Grand Canyon,” Ani DiFranco
Happy Election Day, everyone. I hope you’ll make your voice heard today.
“And too, bearing witness
Like a woman bears a child
With all her might
Born of the greatest pain
Into a grand canyon of light”
As someone with a competitive spirit and fond memories of acing my local library’s Summer Game challenges in elementary school (those “Read Ten Books & Win A Prize!” forms never knew what hit them), long had I bemoaned the fact that there was never a satisfactory corollary for adults. That pity party ended this summer when I became fully immersed in the Ann Arbor District Library‘s (AADL) Summer Game. Not only was it a great deal of fun, it also proved to be an innovative way to showcase the library’s services, teach information literacy skills, and provide incentives for community members to contribute to the library catalog.
While the grand scale and massive amount of monetary and staff resources might not be feasible for every organization, I believe many aspects or even the useful notion of learning through play, could potentially be re-purposed in many contexts. It’s really up to you and your patrons’ identities and needs. Over the next several days, I’ll be sharing different aspects of AADL’s Summer Game, along with what I found so inventive and, yes, fun.
Happy Friday, everyone!
Today I’d like to highlight a great blog called Librarian Lifestyle.
I will say, for any non-librarians out there, that the name is somewhat misleading. Although librarians and library students are indeed the target audience, I think many entries, like this guide to Nashville, how to exercise “on the cheap,” or how to bike in style, speak to a broader audience as well. And those who do work in libraries will find a growing number of entries devoted to workplace issues and professional practice. I especially liked the recent entry “From One New Hire to Another: Tips for Success.”
Librarian Lifestyle features a large body of contributors, most of whom are affiliated with academic institutions in Texas.
Recently came across some terrific children’s literature bibliographies compiled by Kathleen Collins, the Children’s and Young Adult Literature Specialist at the University of Washington. (Aside: What a cool job!) They appear to have been created in conjunction with exhibits within the UW libraries.
They’re all great resources. I plan to seek out the wordless books I haven’t read in the Ann Arbor District Library’s catalog. Hope they’re useful for you too.
I want to highlight an excellent blog sponsored by the American Library Association’s Reference and User Services Association (RUSA).
Chasing Reference originated as a 2012 Emerging Leaders project and is written by Emily Hamstra (University of Michigan), Sarah Elichko (Swarthmore College), Amy Barlow (Quinebaug Valley Community College), Heather Beverly (Cook (IL) Memorial Public Library District), and Carrie Dunham-LaGree (Drake University). Recent entries have covered freshman library orientation, using Pinterest in libraries, and resources about the Olympics. Each month the contributors share what they’ve been reading. It’s a great resource and I recommend it for anyone in a public service role, particularly within an academic library.