By Ned Rorem
An impressive number of essays, critiques, and reflections on existence, tradition, paintings, love, and music—always lyrical, witty, and openly provocative—from probably the most acclaimed modern American composersTime journal has known as Ned Rorem the world's most sensible composer of artwork songs. yet his genius doesn't lead to the area of classical track. Rorem has an extraordinary present for writing, besides, and the huge acclaim that has greeted his memoirs, essay collections, and released diaries attest to this truth. An Absolute reward is a cornucopia of Roremisms—essays, reports, and reviews on an unlimited array of attention-grabbing topics, from track to movie to drama to intercourse. right here are also candid diary entries, exhibiting the frankness and noteworthy perception for which Rorem is understood. even if he's lambasting or celebrating the world's nice musical works and their creators (and, in accordance with Stephen Sondheim, he's the most effective writers approximately tune that i've got ever read), providing intensely own musings on dying and love, or brilliantly dissecting the artist's craft, Ned Rorem is usually interesting, continually provocative, and vastly wonderful.
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Additional info for Absolute Gift: A New Diary
When I pulled those two outer gloves off, the skin on my hand and my arm immediately froze solid, even underneath that third expedition-weight glove. The shooting pain of instant frostbite so startled me that I lost my grip on the glove in my left hand, which the wind grabbed—whoooooosh—and sent into outer space. There was another pair of gloves in the pack on my back. But they might as well have been under my bed at home. In such a storm, there was no way I could take off that pack, put it down and rummage through it.
One day he emerged from his tent wearing a sombrero and a red-and-white outfit that looked like a striped sock. He looked more like a cartoon character than a climber. The Sherpas nearly fell out of their boots laughing. If you can wear a getup like that, I guarantee that you’re pretty sure of yourself in the company of other men. Once we were all fully acclimated to altitude—just before our final summit push—Taske supervised a Harvard two-step physiology test for our group. We were curious to see how members of the expedition would handle brief periods of intense effort.
There were also theme-night dinners, when the food and its preparation and everyone’s dress were supposed to complement one team member’s salient characteristic. I’d brought with me several pounds of bodybuilding powder, which I consumed daily to help keep my weight up. So at my theme dinner, the crowd showed up looking like drug dealers. For table decoration, someone produced a mirror and did lines of my powder on it. By far the predominant physical feature of Base Camp is the great Khumbu Icefall, which begins just a quarter mile away and stretches up the mountain for two miles and almost two thousand vertical feet.