Filed under: america | Tags: ballet, fireworks, july 4, kim gordon, public art, sonic youth, swan lake, the feelies, thurston moore
|[photo by Davey Wilson]||[photo by Ryan Muir]|
|[photo by cverwall]||I wasn’t actually madly impressed by the NYC fireworks on the Fourth of July. Maybe they would have been better from a different viewing point – we were aiming for the South Street Seaport, but ended up in a bit of a dead end on Pier 36 when they started. Apparently they’re the largest display of fireworks in the world, when all four concurrent segments are put together. That’s an interesting label – maybe attached because one centralised city authority covers the firework display for the entire city?
As opposed to maybe Dubai where almost each hotel will have ridiculous displays on New Year’s Eve (not so much the 4th July..). A friend from Hong Kong mentions a similar effect. Overall the display is far larger, but I suppose they’re technically many smaller displays happening at the same time. Not so technically, I suspect there’s a good deal of American-centrism and pride in this statement too.
[photos by Ryan Muir]
Fireworks themselves originally came from the Chinese, as the natural extension of their invention of gunpowder; they’re still the world’s largest manufacturer and exporter. I hear the city spent sclose to 10 million dollars on them, And that fewer fireworks actually arrived this year due to soaring gas and transport costs, and of course the floundering dollar. That’s a lot of money; maybe it could have been better spent elsewhere? Watching the fireworks on Friday though, I realised that the concept of fireworks itself is kind of amazing. Fireworks can essentially be seen as the most accessible form of public art. You can cut off the streets, the land even the water from people but (at least so far) you cannot cut off the sky.
|[photo by Frankie Teardrop]||
And the Sonic Youth and Feelies show? Pretty amazing. Or well, the Feelies were pretty alright to watch, and a halfhearted reminder that the US did have some punk in ’77, which I should probably look up sometime. Maybe. Sonic Youth, though, were incredible. And a little overwhelming if you think about how many teenage bedrooms and static nights they soundtracked. They played a surprisingly wide range of stuff, which was kind of nice.
My favourite moments came when Thurston grabbed Kim up in a hug. Possibly the most wonderful couple ever? Sid and Nancy have nothing on this. And also when she was spinning for ages. Reminded me of Swan Lake in which Prince Siegfried is left spinning alone on stage at the end. I kind of forgot how beautiful ballet can be, at that. Maybe one of these days I’ll make it to the student rush lines.
[photo by Chi Chuan]
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