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Wednesday Morning Roundup

by Stephen Becker 31 Aug 2011 7:48 AM

Today in the roundup: What’s in a frame?, “Morphing” at Ochre House and how visual cues affect what we hear.


WHAT’S IN A FRAME?: How much time do you spend looking at the frames around paintings when you go to a museum? Probably not much. But you know who does closely consider the frame? The artist. The tricky thing, though, is that when a painting changes hands, there’s nothing to stop new owners from reframing it however they see fit. That happened to some of the works in the DMA’s collection, and recently the museum has found replacement frames that more closely resemble the originals.

‘MORPHING’ AT OCHRE HOUSE: A man-eating puppet would be cause for alarm at most theaters, but the idea sounds par for the course at Ochre House. The puppet is part of Morphing, Matthew Posey’s deconstruction of Eugene O’Neill’s Long Day’s Journey into Night. And it sounds like the whole concept works. “The play is haphazard and disjointed at times (the nature of deconstruction), but well worth it for when these scattered bits come together,” M. Lance Lusk writes on Front Row. “The sheer density of firmly committed characterizations creates a pressure cooker of absurdity,” David Novinski writes on “Rare to see such committed and disciplined performances on such random material.” Catch it through Sept. 17.

MOVIN’ TO THE MUSIC: When you go to a concert, does what you see affect what you hear? According to a new study, the answer is yes. German researchers had a group of accomplished musicians watch four pianists play the same piece. What the participants didn’t know is that the music they were hearing was actually a recording. Despite hearing no difference in the performances, the group noted that the men played with more precision and the women played more dramatically. The takeaway – next time you go to a concert, close your eyes.