Bruce Lee’s Lost Interview

Bruce Lee's acting career began on television in 1966, when he landed a part in The Green Hornet. (Watch his amazing audition here). But it took another five years before he gave his first (and only) television interview. For 25 minutes in December 1971, the martial arts star sat down with Pierre Berton, a Canadian journalist, in Hong Kong. And their conversation covered a fair amount of ground – Lee's success starring in Mandarin films .... despite only speaking Cantonese; his difficulty developing a career in a country still hostile toward China; and his work training other Hollywood stars in the martial arts. Berton probably never scored many points for his interviewing style. But Berton is not the point here. It's all about Lee. via BrainPickings

Rauschenberg Erases De Kooning

In 1953, Willem De Kooning was one of the world's most revered living painters, and Robert Rauschenberg was a talented rising star, just a year out of art school. In this clip, Rauschenberg tells of how, armed with nothing but chutzpah and a bottle of Jack Daniels, he knocked on De Kooning's door and flat-out asked the master for an original drawing -- so he could erase it. De Kooning not only acquiesced, but even chose a drawing he particularly liked. Though it was controversial at the time, Erased De Kooning is now considered a conceptual art classic. And its influence endures: Last year a student at Brown out-Rauschenberg'd Rauschenberg by erasing De Kooning's wikipedia entry. H/T Secret Forts

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Kasparov Talks Chess, Technology and a Little Life at Google

Garry Kasparov, still the highest-rated player in the history of chess, pulled through Google late last year and fielded questions from the Googlers. (Don't miss Conan O'Brien's hilarious riff on that term.) As you might expect, the questions often drifted back to Kasparov's famous 1996-97 matches against IBM's Deep Blue (a precursor to Watson) and more recent battles between humans and computers. The 65 minute Q&A includes a lot more good chess talk, but it also gets into the current state of Russian politics (Kasparov has opposed Vladimir Putin and ran for president in 2008), plus the chess master's various theories about leadership and strategic thinking...

PS Be sure to read Kasparov's thoughts on Watson written immediately after watching the much publicized Jeopardy! programs last week.

A Free Archive of 85,000 Classical Music Scores

Worth a quick mention: The New York Times ran a story yesterday profiling the International Music Score Library Project, a crowdsourced web site that indexes classical music scores (though not without raising some copyright concerns along the way). IMSL hosts 85,000 scores with several thousand new ones coming online every month. You can find Bach's Brandenburg Concertos, Mozart's Eine kleine Nachtmusik, Beethoven's Symphony No. 5 – in short, the major ones along with the minor ones. And, in some cases, the archive includes audio recordings. Tchaikovsky's Nutcracker offers an example. You can find a full list of free audio recordings (arranged by composer) here.

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Teclópolis: Modernity in Stop Motion

I couldn't say it much better than FestivalGenius did: This Argentine stop motion film (created by Can Can Club) recounts the "struggles of an anachronistic Super 8 camera to maintain relevancy in the face of dizzying and overwhelming effects of excessive consumption and waste on an increasingly plastic civilization." In 12 minutes, everyday objects form increasingly complex, almost unimaginable landscapes. A wonder to see. Teclópolis was released in 2009....

via Dragon Stop Motion

Free Interactive Comic Book: Poe’s “Pit and the Pendulum”

First came the stop motion film. Now comes the interactive digital comic book that gives you a modern take on Edgar Allan Poe's classic horror story, "The Pit and the Pendulum." (Find Poe's original text here or listen in audio here.) The digital Pit and the Pendulum comic book is the brainchild of Marc Lougee and Susan Ma, who have layered informative links, QR codes and social media into their visual design, adding a new measure of interactivity to the traditional comic book experience. To get the most out of the experience, you will need to download a good PDF reader and QR code reader. Find those resources here. And, on a related note, don't forget to watch another favorite of ours: the 1953 animated film version of Poe’s “The Tell-Tale Heart,” narrated by James Mason. A classic!

Tim O’Brien & Tobias Wolff Talk “Writing and War”

Last month, two award-winning writers and Vietnam veterans – Tim O'Brien and Tobias Wolff – met at Stanford University to talk about war and literature, a tradition that has given us Tolstoy's War and Peace, Remarque's All Quiet on the Western Front, Hemingway's A Farewell to Arms, and Mailer's The Naked and the Dead. O'Brien has confronted war in two previous works, If I Die in a Combat Zone and Going After Cacciato. But he's best known for The Things They Carried, a collection of short stories that gives literary expression to the Vietnam experience, and that's now a staple of high school and college literature courses. As for Tobias Wolff, his memoir recounting his disillusioning experience as a soldier in Vietnam – In Pharaoh's Army – was a National Book Award finalist, ranking up there with This Boy's Life and Old School. Their wide-ranging conversation runs 80 minutes...

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