New Opera makes East Coast debut in Philly


After debuting his first full-length Opera in Detroit, David DiChiera, the father of Michigan Opera scene, has brought “Cyrano” to the Opera Company of Philadelphia until tomorrow.

It is a modern form of “Cyrano de Bergerac,” Edmond Rostand’s famed 19th-century play of unrequited love.

DiChiera, 72, is old enough to begin his Opera-writing career, but he has been trained and involved in the art all his life.

(Photo: David DiChiera, in Philadelphia before Wednesday’s performance of “Cyrano,” the 72-year-old’s first full-length opera. By Jim Graham For The Washington Post, from an article referenced in this post)

First place Keystone Press Award


The winners of the Keystone Press Awards for 2007 were announced recently, both professional, academic and collegiate levels. The prizes are awarded by the Pennsylvania Newspaper Association.

I will be sharing first place in the personality profile category with Tyson McCloud for a feature we wrote for The Temple News on a Temple University alumni who found and lost love in World War II. There are 16 categories in the collegiate level, and nine staff members of The Temple News were recognized in seven different categories. Last year’s award winners.

(Above photograph depicts me with a 2006 Keystone Press Award for a first place standing from news coverage covering a SEPTA strike in 2005. I shared that finish with others.)

Look, another list that criticizes Philadelphia


Well, if there’s anything that media has figured out in this age of failure, it is that lists sell. Particularly lists stacking and ordering cities, something everyone takes pride in, even as people continue to leave them. So it is no surprise that Forbes magazine recently came out with a list ordering cities by a ‘misery’ code.To come to their conclusions Forbes made all sorts of quasi-scientific sounding scales and used all sorts of measures. Yeah.Philadelphia is in the top five, top place went to Detroit.To see the list, complete with the numbers Forbes came up with, check after the jump. Continue reading Look, another list that criticizes Philadelphia

The diary of a mad, black, super delegate

carol-campbell.jpgAmericans. Who the hell knows what a super delegate is? Even if you do, you don’t really. Primary season can be about as labyrinthine as.. well, as every other element to the broken, patchwork voting system that elects leaders in the most powerful country in the world.

Thing is, they could end up being awfully important, if Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama continue to run tightly through to this summer’s Democratic Convention – which almost all are concluding they will. See, if the primary season doesn’t choose a presumptive candidate, then the Party’s 796 super delegates decide for them, as was displayed in an interesting report by the Philadelphia Inquirer’s Larry Eichel. No surprise, Philadelphia’s representatives in this game are voices of the city’s Democratic machine, notably Carol Ann Campbell, the city party’s secretary, former councilwoman, and resident caricature.

Campbell has said she isn’t saying who she supports yet, as the Inquirer’s Heard in the Halls blog reported. Another noted machine rep who is a super delegate is Ron Donatucci, a Temple University alumus and trustee, the city’s register of wills and has also served as the city commitee’s secretary. The city’s other superdelegates are senior elected officials, like U.S. Reps. Chaka Fattah, Bob Brady and Allyson Schwartz, Sen. Casey and Gov. Rendell. (Photo courtesy of City Paper, from an article that is referenced in this post)

My son was riding this Chinese bus

Good find on Philadelphia Weekly’s Will Do blog.

Chris Matthews, a Philly kid and MSNBC talking head, tried to talk about the Chinatown bus, and how his son took it to get home and vote. ‘Cept he kept calling it the Chinese bus, not that getting it right and calling it the Chinatown bus woulda helped most of the country know what the hell he was talking about.

So, yeah, though Matthews totally goes to bat for Philly on the reg, it’s fairly amusing.

Arrest that jaywalker

philadelphia-police-badge.jpgNew Philadelphia Police Commissioner Chuck Ramsey unveiled his comprehensive crime fighting report early this month. Lots was made of  initiatives to pump in new cops and lessen homicide totals with direct action, but a smaller plan is in the works.

An old suggestion by city cop Edward McLaughlin for Philadelphia to conform with most of Pennsylvania in a small and sensible way caught the attention of Ramsey and was included in his plan, as reported by the Philadelphia Inquirer today.Throughout most of the state, such quality of life offenses like littering, jaywalking and acting as a public nuisance require an officer just to write a citation, permitted the transgressor has proof of address. Since 1974, Philadelphia officers have had to arrest the person, and spend an hour or more bringing the individual to be booked and processed.

Don’t be too hopeful though. The change could take at least six months and could require a massive overhaul in processing, as there is the expectation for a huge upsurge in citations. We’ll see if Ramsey can fight Philly, where good ideas come to die.

Political ad of the century?

The embattled, corrupt, figurehead of the contemporary South Philadelphia Democratic machine, Vince Fumo, is running his reelection campaign for state senator, amid questions of his having to sell his Fairmount mansion – built more than ten years ago – to pay legal fees in defense of the usual sort of allegations of malfeasance. But, boy does he have an advertisement for you.

Philly Mayor to be featured on ABC's 'World News'

Tomorrow, new Mayor Michael Nutter will be interviewed by ABC’s Charles Gibson, host of the network’s signature newscharles-gibson-world-news.jpg broadcast, World News Tonight.

ABC will also follow Nutter to film a day in the life segment. Gibson will host World News from Old City tomorrow night, as well.

The feature comes as Nutter comes into one power of one of the largest cities in the country, determined to take on urban problems with big plans.

World News broadcasts at 6:30 p.m. on ABC 6.