Cher Public

No, she is an actress

Born on this day in 1943 American actress Blythe Danner.  

Born on this day in 1525 composer Giovanni Perluigi da Palestrina

Born on this day in 1809 composer Felix Mendelssohn

Born on this day in 1887 writer Gertrude Stein

Born on this day in 1904 composer Luigi Dallapiccola

Born on this day in 1927 soprano Claire Watson

  • olliedawg

    Ever since I saw Blythe Danner in “Eccentricities of a Nightingale” way back when, I’ve been a huge fan. She blew me away, too, the many times I saw her live in Williamstown, where she kicked some serious ass in any number of Shaw plays. She has to be one of the best “listeners” in the business — watch her watching her colleagues in any movie or play, and she will convince you that it’s the first time she’s heard those lines. And, of course, there’s the voice — one that Pauline Kael described as (paraphrase here) “brandy over cracked ice”.

    • armerjacquino

      I have a much-treasured DVD of her Nina in THE SEAGULL, opposite Frank Langella. A masterclass.

      • The Poet Lenski

        Danner’s Nina is the standard by which I’ve judged all other Ninas I’ve seen since. Only Carey Mulligan, in London and New York, has come close. (The less said about Natalie Portman in the role, the better).

        That wonderful production originated at Williamstown Theatre Festival, Danner’s longtime artistic home, and was shot in and around The Berkshires. Absolutely stunning scenery. Lee Grant made a great Arkadina, as well.

        • olliedawg

          Amen to that. Danner conveys all the fragility and high-strung nervousness with her hands and eyes. It’s a stunning performance. What do they say about playing Nina? If you’re old enough to understand her, you’re too old to play her? Danner proves out that adage as misleading, if not a downright lie.

          And ,yes, Lee Grant’s Arkadina also rocked. This was a wonderful production. Sorry I missed it in person.

  • perfidia

    Blythe Danner is a riot in “Will and Grace.” She makes the most mean spirited one liners sound charming: “She’s adopted, but we love her as if she were real.” Now, how a woman that charming gave the world a creature as boring as Gwyneth is one of life’s great mysteries.

  • RobNYNY

    It us my understanding that she is technically a separate person from Meredith Baxter.

    • olliedawg

      Meredith who? ;-)
      No contest, no mistaken identify. Danner’s the real deal.

  • Krunoslav

    Four favorite Mendelssohn clips:

  • chicagoing

    Riccardo Muti withdraws from his February appearances here with the CSO following hip surgery.

  • PCally

    Everyone should see “I’ll See You My Dreams” which was a surprise semi-hit this summer. Its really Danner’s only showcase film and she’s really something in it. The whole film is actually quite wonderful and Sam Elliot is quite good as her potential love interest. It got her some much needed attention and I wish she’d gotten some awards traction for it (not an Oscar nomination but SAG or a Golden Globe nom or something).

  • perfidia

    Eleanor Steber in that “Hear Ye, Israel” is everything.

  • Antonello Palombi will sing Manrico in tonight’s performance of Verdi’s Il Trovatore, replacing Marcello Giordani, who is ill.

  • OT: RIP, Bob Elliott

  • manou

    grimoaldo -- this is mainly for you: the URL of the ROH comments page which also links to most of the reviews of L’Etoile (scroll down):

    There were many critical and disparaging comments on the Twittersphere immediately after the prima, but some did enjoy it as well.

    I noted that if you were going to provide a sOUFflé, it would a very bad idea to serve it with a thick and gloopy sauce on top.

    • grimoaldo

      Many thanks manou!

  • scooterberwyn

    Why are we not wishing Miss Danner a Happy Birthday, instead of posting “Born on this day” like she has passed away? She is still very much alive. Happy 73rd Birthday, Miss Danner!