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Arts

Tony-Winning Twosome

6.13.12

<i>Porgy and Bess</i> ensemble members Nathaniel Stampley (on left) and Alicia Hall Moran sang "Bess You Is My Woman Now," outside the Science Center during the production’s run at the ART.

Porgy and Bess ensemble members Nathaniel Stampley (on left) and Alicia Hall Moran sang "Bess You Is My Woman Now," outside the Science Center during the production’s run at the ART.

Rose Lincoln/Harvard Staff Photographer

In a surprisingly dominant showing, the Broadway musical ONCE took eight Tony Awards at the American Theatre Wing’s annual ceremony, held on June 10.  John Tiffany, director of ONCE, received the Tony for Best Director of a Musical; he was a fellow at the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study during the 2010-2011 academic year. During his fellowship year, he workshopped ONCE at the American Repertory Theater (ART), preparing the show that won the 2012 Tony for Best Musical, and, among musicals, also won for book, leading actor’s performance, orchestrations, scenic design, lighting design, and sound design. While at Radcliffe, Tiffany, who is associate director of the National Theatre of Scotland, delivered the Julia S. Phelps Annual Lecture in Art and the Humanities, titled “Can We Keep Up? Theatre’s Incredible Ability to Evolve.” His presentation touched on topics also explored in the Harvard Magazine 2012 feature, “The Future of Theater.”

Another musical with roots at the ART, The Gershwins’ Porgy and Bess, won two Tonys—for Best Revival of a Musical and for the best performance by a musical actress—its female lead, Audra McDonald. The ART’s artistic director, Diane Paulus, professor of the practice of theatre, directed Porgy, which stirred controversy when it played at the ART in 2011 before opening on Broadway in January 2012. Paulus received a Tony nomination for best direction of a musical. 

 Two Harvard-educated actors also received nominations for 2012 Tonys. Stockard Channing ’65 was nominated for best leading actress in a play for her work in Other Desert Cities. John Lithgow ’67, Art.D. ’05, was nominated for best leading actor in a play for his star turn in The Columnist. Lithgow’s 2005 Commencement address at Harvard explained some of his creative philosophy.  

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SKALA SIKAMINEAS, LESBOS, GREECE

Refugees from Syria rest on the coast of the Greek island of Lesbos. Thousands of refugees cross the Aegean Sea from Turkey in rubber boats every day, fleeing conflicts in Syria, Iraq, and Afghanistan.

A Syrian refugee who came to Lesbos that week by one of many boats told me his new life had just started. “New life as a human being,” he added. 

     I hope he will not question this emotional sentence on the long way to a new home even though there are signs from the first seconds of their arrival that the refugees didn’t land in a paradise. 

     Every boat that comes to the island is greeted by two groups. There are dedicated volunteers who work in shifts during day and night to help refugees in their first hours in Europe—and then there are also groups of   “engine hunters,” as they are called here. Very often they come first. They only care for the boat. The engines are removed before the last person is taken care of. Business is business.

     It was a long week full of almost surreal scenes…

Photograph by Maciek Nabrdalik

Documenting refugees fleeing war to seek safety in Europe

The screening of Kent Garrett’s Black GI

Photograph by Jim Harrison

Harvard Film Archive

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SKALA SIKAMINEAS, LESBOS, GREECE

Refugees from Syria rest on the coast of the Greek island of Lesbos. Thousands of refugees cross the Aegean Sea from Turkey in rubber boats every day, fleeing conflicts in Syria, Iraq, and Afghanistan.

A Syrian refugee who came to Lesbos that week by one of many boats told me his new life had just started. “New life as a human being,” he added. 

     I hope he will not question this emotional sentence on the long way to a new home even though there are signs from the first seconds of their arrival that the refugees didn’t land in a paradise. 

     Every boat that comes to the island is greeted by two groups. There are dedicated volunteers who work in shifts during day and night to help refugees in their first hours in Europe—and then there are also groups of   “engine hunters,” as they are called here. Very often they come first. They only care for the boat. The engines are removed before the last person is taken care of. Business is business.

     It was a long week full of almost surreal scenes…

Photograph by Maciek Nabrdalik

Documenting refugees fleeing war to seek safety in Europe

The screening of Kent Garrett’s Black GI

Photograph by Jim Harrison

Harvard Film Archive