Author Archives: dannyashkenasi

About dannyashkenasi

I'm a composer with over 30 years experience creating music theater. I'm also an actor, writer, director, producer, teacher and general enthusiast for the arts.

Five Minutes in Lockdown

A few months ago I was conducting a third grade choir class in a Tribeca school, when an alarm sounded. “Lockdown”, one of the two classroom teachers in the room with me and 25 third graders announced. Swiftly, and calmly, … Continue reading

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LIGHT ENTERS THE HOME – with a “light”hearted music quiz

  I’ll have a picture with my puzzle, please Longtime visitors to my site will have noticed that I love sharing photos, under the “Two-fisted Touristing” rubric, of scenic vistas from around the world or places and events in New … Continue reading

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HAIKU NEW YORK

    The sky is paper Bleeding upward from the edge There are ink towers   My brother will be There to meet me at the dock Has it been five years?   Now there are seagulls Wheeling and diving … Continue reading

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Notes on Myself

Sometimes I am asked, in applications for grants or music competitions for example, to write about myself.  It is a certain special torture to have to act as your own greatest champion in writing (or in person), but that is … Continue reading

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In the Name of Love on MLK Day

    Today our nation commemorates Martin Luther King Jr. Day. The message and significance of Martin Luther King Jr. and what he represents for the aspirations of our country and the world weigh more heavily, sadly, today, than they … Continue reading

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IT’S A PUZZLEMENT

One of Ed’s Christmas gifts to me was three puzzles made out of photos he had taken.  This was for one of our traditional “little” gifts we give each other, and Ed boasted of a Groupon offer that allowed him … Continue reading

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The Map Room of Madison, Wisconsin

  On the second floor of a hundred year old house near Vilas Park in Madison, Wisconsin, is a guest bedroom known as the Map Room.     Three of its four walls have been wall papered by huge maps … Continue reading

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To the Woman Who Sat in Rear Mezz B 106 During Last Night’s Performance of THE BAND’S VISIT

This post is not really about “The Band’s Visit”, the marvelously unlikely new Broadway musical hit show, enchanting critics and sold out houses. This is about you, the sad selfish woman sitting diagonally behind me. You see, about halfway through … Continue reading

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NIGHT and SNOW in CENTRAL PARK

  Secret Snow Song #1 (Can’t guess the song titles and artists?  They can be found alphabetically tagged at the bottom of post, which should help.)        Secret Night Song #1       Secret Night Song #2 … Continue reading

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Composing “Divertissement in the Snow”

“You should compose a piece for the family to play at Christmas”, my husband Ed said to me a few weeks ago (actually it was November 10, I have documented evidence, I’ll get to that later, not that it really … Continue reading

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“HOT MESS” MALE BISEXUALS “TORCHED” OFF BROADWAY

Hot Mess – Torch Song – Call Me By Your Name – Cabaret – Speakeasy By a quirk of timing I wound up seeing two days in a row the two stage plays currently playing in New York (Off Broadway) … Continue reading

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LGBT is Thrown Around All the Time, But Where is the “B”?

Notes from the “BiView: Bisexual Representation in Media Panel” at NewFest2017 October 21st I attended the panel discussion on Bisexuality in the Media, the first of its kind at a NewFest/Outfest film festival.  Moderated by bisexual activist and journalist Eliel … Continue reading

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ILLUMINATING LGBTQ LIVES – Documentaries at NewFest 2017

Features: 100 Men – My Wonderful West Berlin – A Womb of Their Own Shorts: Bayard and Me – Umbrella – DES!RE – The Son I Never Had – Resist – House of JXN   “We have gay people.  Hey, … Continue reading

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CALL ME BY YOUR NAME, SAM, and then Play It Again

I took a Swoon Dive this weekend.  I read André Aciman’s “Call Me By Your Name” while playing Sam Smith on endless shuffle.  It was almost irresponsibly intoxicating. Say It First – Sam Smith I first heard about the Gay … Continue reading

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QUEER NARRATIVES at the MOVIES

NewFest 2017 Feature Length Dramas: After Louie – God’s Own Country – Against the Law –  My Son is Gay – Discreet – The City of the Future – Professor Marston and the Wonder Women Last year I saw only … Continue reading

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QUEER SHORTS – The Fab and the Furious

Highlights from “Boys Shorts”, “Beyond the Binary”, “Drawn This Way – Animated” & “Faith and Fury” film shorts programs at Newfest – New York’s LGBT Film Festival   It probably plays to the stereotype of the typical NewFest attendee that … Continue reading

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