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Posts Tagged ‘Maurice Sendak’

Blank on Blank Creates the ‘Tom Robbins on Jitterbugs’ Video

The Blank on Blank organization has created an animated video starring Even Cowgirls Get the Blues author Tom Robbins. The video embedded above features outtakes from a previously unheard interview conducted with Tod Mesirow that took place in 1994. In the past, the producers behind this YouTube channel made pieces about I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings memoirist Maya Angelou, Where the Wild Things Are creator Maurice Sendak, and Infinite Jest novelist David Foster Wallace.

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Neil Gaiman Recites ‘Jabberwocky’ From Memory

Once again, Neil Gaiman agreed to perform a reading of a beloved children’s story for a Worldbuilders fundraising venture. The choices included Where the Wild Things Are by Maurice Sendak, ‘Jabberwocky’ by Lewis Carroll, Fox in Socks by Dr. Seuss, and Goodnight Moon written by Margaret Wise Brown and illustrated by Clement Hurd.

‘Jabberwocky’ received the most votes and the organization has raised more than $639,000.00. The video embedded above features Gaiman in the woods delivering a dramatic recitation of Carroll’s famous nonsense poem from memory—what do you think?

Blank on Blank Creates the ‘Maya Angelou On Con Men’ Video

The Blank on Blank organization has created an animated video starring I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings memoirist Maya Angelou. The video embedded above features an unheard interview that took place in 1970 between the late author and Pulitzer Prize-winning nonfiction writer Louis “Studs” Terkel. In the past, the producers behind this YouTube channel made pieces about Where the Wild Things Are author Maurice Sendak and Infinite Jest novelist David Foster Wallace.

Leo Tolstoy Gets a Google Doodle For His Birthday

Tolstoy Doodle
Google has created a Doodle to celebrate Leo Tolstoy’s 186th birthday. The image pays homage to three works by the famed Russian novelist: War & Peace, Anna Karenina, and The Death of Ivan Ilyich.

Artist Roman Muradov designed the piece. Google has posted an essay Muradov wrote explaining his creative process: ”The language of cartooning, likewise, is the language of reduction; it’s less descriptive than realistic artwork or film, and is less likely to replace the reader’s vision. It seemed fitting to focus on Tolstoy’s central theme of dualism and to highlight his stylistic nuances through the rhythm of the sequences – the almost full moon against the almost starless night, the red of Anna’s handbag, Ivan’s fatal curtains that stand between him and the light of his spiritual awakening.”

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Neil Gaiman On the Value of Ghost Stories

Newbery Medal-winning author Neil Gaiman headlined “a semi-secret late-night event” during the TED 2014 conference. Brain Pickings reports that Gaiman performed recitations of a ghost story and an essay entitled “Ghost in the Machine.”

Here’s an excerpt from Gaiman’s readings: “We have been telling each other tales of otherness, of life beyond the grave, for a long time; stories that prickle the flesh and make the shadows deeper and, most important, remind us that we live, and that there is something special, something unique and remarkable about the state of being alive. Fear is a wonderful thing, in small doses.”

Press play in the Soundcloud player embedded above to listen. In his essay, Gaiman discusses human society’s history with terrifying tales and the value of ghost stories. During the event, Gaiman also talked about why he agrees with J.R.R. Tolkien and Maurice Sendak’s idea that “there is no such thing as ‘children’s’ books” and “the ghosts of today that terrify” him.

John Steinbeck Gets Google Doodle For His Birthday

steinbeck doodle

Google has created a Doodle to celebrate John Steinbeck’s 112th birthday. Throughout his writing career, Steinbeck penned many beloved works including East of Eden, Of Mice & Men, and the Pulitzer Prize-winning title, The Grapes of Wrath.

To this day, Steinbeck is a widely respected and read author. According to SFGate, the organizers behind the Steinbeck Festival plan to celebrate the 75th anniversary of The Grapes of Wrath at this year’s event. In April, the Of Mice & Men play starring James Franco and Chris O’Dowd will open on Broadway.

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Zora Neale Hurston Gets a Google Doodle for Her Birthday

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Google has created a Doodle to celebrate Zora Neale Hurston’s birthday. According to the official Zora Neale Hurston website, she was born on January 7, 1891.

Through her writing, Hurston became an important figure during the Harlem Renaissance. Time reports that Hurston had written “four novels, dozens of short stories, plays and essays, and two books of folklore based on her anthropological research that captured some of the oral history of African Americans.”

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‘Where the Wild Things Are’ Revisited on Kickstarter

The late children’s book author Maurice Sendak vowed never to write a sequel for Where the Wild Things Are, but Geoffrey O. Todd and Rich Berner are raising money for an illustrated poem inspired by the classic book.

They hope to raise £25,000 on Kickstarter to print hard copies of Back to the WildClick here to listen to the poem in its entirety. We’ve embedded a video about the project above–what do you think? Here’s more about the project:

How does Back to the Wild connect with Where The Wild Things Are? Sophie is Max’s daughter and she too is excited to hear about the strange Wild Things, but time has elapsed. Max in our world, is now probably in his 30s and the Wild Things have been ‘marooned’ for almost 30 years … We have also been very careful not to impinge on Mr Sendak’s copyright and have taken the necessary legal advice around this whole project. We fully acknowledge his wondrous creation and hope that our work takes the story forward in a respectful, engaging and creative way.

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James Gandolfini Reads ‘In the Night Kitchen’ by Maurice Sendak

The great actor James Gandolfini died yesterday. To remember the actor, we’ve linked a 92nd Street Y video of Gandolfini reading In the Night Kitchen by Maurice Sendak.

Follow this link to jump straight to the reading. You can watch the reading at the 43:50 mark in the video embedded above–filmed at Sendak’s 80th birthday celebration in 2008.  Haaretz has more about Gandolfini’s connection to the author:

But perhaps his most Jewish role came in Spike Jonze’s “Where the Wild Things Are” (2009), an adaptation of Maurice Sendak’s classic illustrated children’s story. Gandolfini played Carol, one of the titular characters dreamed up by the Max (Max Records), a disobedient little boy with a vivid imagination who is sent to bed without his supper. Max constructs a fictional world in a forest inhabited by ferocious wild creatures that crown Max as their ruler.

(Link via)

Maurice Sendak Gets a Google Doodle for His 85th Birthday

Google has created an animated Google Doodle celebrating Maurice Sendak‘s 85th Birthday. The literary world mourned Sendak’s passing last May.

You can watch the full animation at this YouTube link. Here’s more from Slate:

It begins, of course, with Max sailing to the land of Where the Wild Things Are, but soon also ventures to the surreal cityscape of In the Night Kitchen and ends, appropriately, with the birthday party from Sendak’s 2011 book Bumble-Ardy. Happy birthday, Mr. Sendak.

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