Shooting Stars: Iconic Images of Hollywood’s Golden Age, a Bob Willoughby retrospective, is on display at the Elliott Halls Gallery in Amsterdam until January 19. Willoughby photographed MM at Ray Anthony’s ‘My Marilyn’ party in 1952 (see above), and on the Let’s Make Love set in 1960. Bob Willoughby died in 2009; you can read my tribute to him here.
Richard Avedon’s 1954 photo of Marilyn with director Billy Wilder covers the latest issue of Dutch arts weekly VARAgids(or VARA Guide), as this summer’s Wilder retrospective continues at the Eye FilmMuseum in Amsterdam. (You can read the full article – in Dutch – here.)
The Seven Year Itch is being screened at the Eye FilmMuseum in Amsterdam on selected dates from now through August, as part of ‘Sweet & Sour’, a Billy Wilder retrospective. The new restored print of Some Like It Hot (also mentioned here) will follow in September.
Gentlemen Prefer Blondes will be screened tonight at 7 pm at the Rialto Film Theatre in Amsterdam.
“‘Diamonds are a girl’s best friend,’ as the blond showgirl Lorelei Lee sings in this particularly successful comedy / musical, which is based on the equally popular Broadway musical. Lorelei is played by Marilyn Monroe, who sings this song in a silly, seductive way. Director Hawks, who had trouble with Monroe anyway, wanted to have it spoken by a professional singer, but she rejected this resolutely. The now iconic song, for example, inspired Madonna to become a ‘Material Girl’.”
If you’re in Amsterdam this Christmas, don’t miss the Happy Birthday Marilyn: 90 Years Ms Monroe exhibit (featuring the Ted Stampfer collection), on display at De Nieuwe Kerk until next February. And from next Thursday (December 22), the city’s EYE Film Institute will be screening seven of Marilyn’s best movies: Niagara, Gentlemen Prefer Blondes, How to Marry a Millionaire, The Seven Year Itch, Bus Stop, Some Like It Hot and The Misfits.
Also coming from the Netherlands in October is Marilyn and Audrey: The Battle, a children’s book by Hanneke Groenteman, about two girls studying MM and Audrey Hepburn for a school project – and as they dig into the stars’ lives the girls learn about friendship, love and jealousy.
Marking Marilyn’s 90th year, Ted Stampfer‘s extensive collection of her personal property and memorabilia will be on display at De Nieuwe Kerk in Amsterdam, from October 1st, 2016 until February 5, 2017.
Milton Greene’s 1955 portrait of Marilyn – posing with a girl’s best friend, her dog – graces the January 2016 cover of Focus, a Dutch photography magazine. Inside is a short item about Marilyn Monroe: The Woman Who Made Love to the Camera, an exhibition of images by Greene and Douglas Kirkland, on display at the Eduard Planting Gallery in Amsterdam from January 9-March 5.
Amsterdam’s latest opera, Waiting For Miss Monroe, is reviewed in today’s Financial Times.
“Coming hot on the heels of Simon Curtis’s reverent film My Week With Marilyn, Raaff’s Waiting hits a similar note of literalistic hagiography. Though the medium of opera could have afforded the makers the chance to explore more distantly associative territory, Raaff and his team have stuck with a handful of well-explored biographical reflections. The opera’s three scenes trundle through Monroe’s fabled lateness on set, her fear of the film camera, her love affair with drugs and alcohol, her insecurity, her birthday hymn for JFK, and her death (a duet with her former self, Norma Jeane).”
The New York Timesreports on ‘Waiting for Miss Monroe’, an opera starring Laura Aikin which has just opened in Amsterdam. (As ES Updates noted in April, it is said to be loosely based on the highly dubious Miner transcripts.)
“After about 15 minutes one grasped the extent of Mr. de Raaff’s musical palette and sensed that Marilyn’s personality and the opera’s ambiance generally needed more variety. Only in fleeting moments did Mr. de Raaff break with austerity, as when rumblings of jazz announced the Kennedys or a quotation from Shakespeare brought a hint of something Elizabethan.
Originally conceived at 90 minutes without a break, the opera lasted two and a half hours, with one intermission. The original idea might have been better.
Fortunately, the vocal lines are well conceived for the voices — a decisive factor in Laura Aikin’s tour-de-force portrayal of the title role. She soars in the vocal stratosphere, shaping phrases expressively and with purpose. And her resemblance to the real Marilyn — figure and all — as dressed in the star’s familiar fashions (recreated by Clement & Sandôu, also responsible for the realistic décor) was uncanny.”