Thursday, September 11, 2008

About the Artist

(Singer, actress, director, producer, writer; born April 24, 1942 in Brooklyn, New York)

Her name is Barbra, and there has never been anyone quite like her.

From the start, her genius was impossible to ignore. Among the first to take notice of Barbra Streisand was Harold Arlen, who had this to say after hearing the performer’s debut Barbra Streisand Album: “Did you ever hear Helen Morgan sing? Were you ever at the theater when Fanny Brice clowned in her classic comedic way, or when Beatrice Lillie deliciously poked fun at all sham and pomp? Have you heard our top vocalists belt, whisper or sing with that steady and urgent beat behind them? Have you ever seen a painting by Modigliani? If you have, do not think the above has been ballooned out of proportion. I advise you to watch over Barbra Streisand’s career. This young lady (a mere twenty) has a stunning future. Keep listening, keep watching. And please remember, I told you so.”

For more than 40 years, Barbra Streisand’s trailblazing career in music, theater, films, and television has been and remains one of the most thrilling spectacles of our culture. Her voice is recognizable as no one else’s within a note or two. Her way with Gershwin and Bernstein and Sondheim, with Rodgers and Hammerstein as well as with Michel Legrand and Alan and Marilyn Bergman, even with the likes of Debussy, Schumann, and Wolf – her way with the greatest songs of all time – has been a gift to American culture.

A quick glance at a list of Streisand firsts is staggering. Her first Broadway appearance, in I Can Get It For You Wholesale, earned her a New York Drama Critics Circle Award as well as a Tony(r) nomination. Her first album, The Barbra Streisand Album, got not one but two Grammy Awards in 1963 including Album of the Year, making her at that time the youngest artist ever to have received that award. In 1965, Streisand’s first television special, My Name Is Barbra, redefined and revitalized the genre, earning a total of five Emmys as well as the distinguished Peabody Award. It is one of many signs of this amazing career that three decades after that first batch of Emmys her Barbra Streisand: The Concert copped two Emmys for the singer as well three more for her production—and more Emmy honors still in 2001 for Barbra Streisand: Timeless, Live in Concert.

Her first motion picture, Funny Girl, earned her the 1968 Academy Award for Best Actress. Jule Styne, Funny Girl’s composer, commented early on that “besides possessing a God-given singing voice, Barbra is the first girl I have ever heard who is a great actress in each song. Barbra makes every song sound like a well-written three-act play performed stunningly in three minutes.”

This actress who sings is the highest-selling female artist of all time. With fifty gold albums, and thirteen multi-platinum, sales of Streisand albums are ahead of those of The Beatles and the Rolling Stones and second only to Elvis—making this Broadway baby the only artists among the top four of all time who is not part of the rock and roll revolution. Her Number One solo albums so far span more than three decades, a longevity simply unmatched by any other solo recording artist.

Barbra Streisand is the first female composer to win and Academy Award, for her aptly named song “Evergreen” from the hit 1976 film A Star Is Born. In 1983, Yentl made Streisand the first woman ever to produce, direct, write, and star in a major motion picture. Smashing right through Hollywood’s glass ceiling, The Prince of Tides was the first film directed by its female star to receive a Best Director nomination from the Directors Guild of America as well as seven Academy Award nominations. The first dramatic television feature from Streisand’s own Barwood Films, the pioneering Serving in Silence: The Margarethe Cammermeyer Story, earned three Emmy Awards and signaled Streisand’s commitment to social justice. The activist work of the founder of the Streisand Foundation—which continues to benefit everything from the Human Rights Campaign Foundation and the Center for Public Integrity to the National Breast Cancer Coalition Fund and the Cedars-Sinai Women’s Heart Center-- is of a piece with this indomitable woman’s art. In 2004, Barbra Streisand received the Humanitarian Award from the Human Rights campaign.

She was born in Brooklyn in 1942, the daughter of Diana and Emanuel Streisand. Her father, a dedicated and respected teacher who had emigrated from Vienna, passed away when Barbra was only 15 months. While still in her teens, and an honor student at Erasmus High School in Brooklyn, she burst into show business with a singing contest at a small Greenwich Village club, leading to gigs at the Bon Soir and the Blue Angel and, in 1962, to a contract with Columbia Records. That same year, Streisand landed a small but, as it turned out, unforgettable role: Miss Marmelstein in I Can get It For You Wholesale. What followed is the stuff of living legend: The Ed Sullivan Show in 1962, opening for Liberace in Las Vegas in 1963, Funny Girl at the Winter Garden in 1964, reprised in 1966 in London’s West End at the Prince of Wales. A moving passing-of-the-mantle was televised, as Streisand appeared as a guest in The Judy Garland Show, where “Happy Days Are Here Again” became—later with “People” and “Don’t Rain On My Parade”—a signature Streisand song. Her own television specials followed and redefined the musical possibilities of television itself, from My Name is Barbra in 1965 right through Color Me Barbra, Belle of 14th Street, Barbra Streisand and Other Musical Instruments, plus a historic concert in Central Park in 1967 and the more recent live shows such as One Voice.

Her movie career flourished, a triumphant debut in Funny Girl, Hello Dolly!, On A Clear Day You Can See Forever, the saucy The Owl and the Pussycat, the protofeminist Up The Sandbox, the heartbreaking The Way We Were, A Star Is Born, Yentl, the screwball classic What’s Up, Doc?, and the Prince of Tides.

Richard Rodgers, one of the first Kennedy Center Honorees and an early Streisand champion, summed up her talent best when he enthused that “Nobody is talented enough to get laughs, to bring tears, to sing with the depth of a fine cello or the lift of a climbing bird. Nobody, that is, except Barbra. She makes our musical world a much happier place.” Bowled over by this American’s way with French chansons, as well as with her own American Songbook, none other than Maurice Chevalier proclaimed “Barbra Streisand is one of those miracles which comes along once in a lifetime. She is mad with talent and more gifted than any human being should be permitted to be. We embrace you, Barbra Streisand.” So does the whole world.

from: The Kennedy Center for Performing Arts Website (link)


Morgan Freeman, George Jones, Barbra Streisand, Twyla Tharp, and Pete Townshend & Roger Daltrey
To Receive 31st Annual Kennedy Center Honors

America to Celebrate the Careers of Six Extraordinary Artists,
Sunday, December 7, 2008

Gala will be broadcast on CBS

Washington, D.C.-The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts announced the selection of the individuals who will receive the Kennedy Center Honors of 2008. Recipients to be honored at the 31st annual national celebration of the arts are: actor Morgan Freeman, singer George Jones, actress and singer Barbra Streisand, choreographer Twyla Tharp, and musicians Pete Townshend and Roger Daltrey of The Who.

"With their extraordinary genius and tenacity, the 2008 Honorees have redefined the way we see, hear and feel the performing arts. We will forever be thankful for the great gifts they have shared with us," said Kennedy Center Chairman Stephen A. Schwarzman. "Morgan Freeman's name is synonymous with great screen acting and is one of the most respected performers in American cinema. With his unique voice and extraordinary career endurance, singer George Jones has been instrumental in making country music a vital force in American life. Barbra Streisand's trailblazing career in music, theater, films, and television is one of the most thrilling spectacles of our culture. Choreographer Twyla Tharp is an American original, whose work has indelibly enriched the vocabulary of modern dance, contemporary ballet, and the Broadway musical. As the heart and soul of the seminal band The Who, songwriters and singers Pete Townshend and Roger Daltrey transformed the sights and sounds of rock and roll."

The annual Honors Gala has become the highlight of the Washington cultural year, and its broadcast on CBS is a high point of the television season. On Sunday, December 7, in a star-studded celebration on the Kennedy Center Opera House stage, produced by George Stevens Jr., the 2008 Honorees will be saluted by great performers from New York, Hollywood, Nashville, and the arts capitals of the world. Seated with the President of the United States and Mrs. Bush, the Honorees will accept the thanks of their peers and fans through performances and heartfelt tributes.

The President and Mrs. Bush will receive the Honorees and members of the Artists Committee, who nominate them, along with the Kennedy Center Board of Trustees at the White House prior to the gala performance. The 2008 Kennedy Center Honors Gala concludes with a supper dance in the Grand Foyer.

The Kennedy Center Honors will be bestowed the night before the gala on Saturday, December 6, at a State Department dinner, hosted by Secretary of State, Condoleezza Rice.

The Honors Gala will be recorded for broadcast on the CBS Network for the 31st consecutive year as a two-hour prime time special.

Stevens, who created the Honors in 1978 with Nick Vanoff, will produce and co-write the show for the 31st year. The Honors telecast has been honored with five Emmy's for Outstanding Program and is nominated again this year. It has also been recognized with the Peabody Award for Outstanding Contribution to Television and seven awards from the Writers Guild of America.

The Boeing Company is the exclusive underwriter of the 2008 Kennedy Center Honors Gala and weekend of events, which includes the honorees luncheon and post-gala supper dance in the Grand Foyer.

Delta Air Lines, the official airline of the Kennedy Center Honors television broadcast, will provide transportation for the performers and television crew that will be coming to Washington for the Honors Gala.

The Honors recipients recognized for their lifetime contributions to American culture through the performing arts- whether in dance, music, theater, opera, motion pictures or television-are selected by the Center's Board of Trustees. The primary criterion in the selection process is excellence. The Honors are not designated by art form or category of artistic achievement; the selection process, over the years, has produced balance among the various arts and artistic disciplines.

Past Honors recipients, as well as Members of the Kennedy Center's national artists committee, made recommendations of possible 2008 Honorees. Artists making recommendations included: Alan Alda, Dan Aykroyd, Garth Brooks, Kenny Chesney, Glenn Close, Joel Coen, Christine Ebersole, Renée Fleming, Savion Glover, Thomas Hampson, Herbie Hancock, Paloma Herrera, Hugh Jackman, Billy Joel, Evgeny Kissin, Patti LuPone, Rob Marshall, Reba McEntire, Terrence McNally, Mark Morris, Mark O'Connor, Bernadette Peters, Frederica von Stade, Forest Whitaker, Damian Woetzel, and Catherine Zeta-Jones. Previous Kennedy Center Honorees, including Carol Burnett, Clint Eastwood, Elton John, James Levine, and Sidney Poitier, also made nominations.

Michael M. Kaiser, President of the Center, expressed the national cultural center's gratitude to the many individuals involved in the success of the Honors program. "In addition to recognizing our most treasured artists, the Kennedy Center Honors also supports many of our performing arts initiatives, education and public service programming, and national outreach efforts."

Tuesday, September 09, 2008

Plog No. 9

Heart-Lung Machine, one of many
Philippine Heart Center
Me wearing Heart Center OR Scrub Suits
This rude nurse has her feet up during our basic life support seminar
and a doctor was discussing in front! It was a formal lecture... sigh...
Beautiful intern stitching up a ripped up mouth
This guy got punched with a knuckled fist
Early morning East Avenue Medical Center E.R.
Looks like alien symbols
View from OR lounge Heart Center
Wall of OR - Laminar Flow

Saturday, September 06, 2008

Surgery ER Duty 2 : The Stabber

Back from my second ER Duty in surgery. As fate would have it, me, Niña, Sandy, a little of kim, Dr. Fabie our acting SROD (while Dr. Varela was doing surgery upstairs) and our surgeon-rotator from Capitol Medical Center were wearing ORANGE! I didn't know if it was a goodluck charm or a curse. Our duty was more toxic than the first one but not necessarily too exahusting for me. I'm here writing right?!
Kim, Outgoing SROD Dr. Garcia, Chris, Sandy, April

I was able to do something new in this duty though. 1. I saw brain peeking from the skull of a living person (a child actually); and 2. I apposed muscle together ON MY OWN!

This kid got hit by his godfather driving a tricycle, talk about fate. I don't know what happened with this kid after he got admitted but I saw his scans and he had A LOT of fracture. I guess a tricycle's a really big vehicle if it's hitting a small child.
With Dr. Fabie temporary replacing Dr. Varela

We had a 4 stabbing victims last night. Two were stabber and his victim (he alsto stabbed back), one was stabbed two times with an ice-pick and one knife stab wound, and the last one was stabbed by the rake behind his farming tractor when it turned-over. The man hurt by the farming equipment was quickly sent to the OR while two just went home. I got the last one left (the stabber) and sew his forearm extensors together. Whew! I don't remember how long I took, must be long and I had one time I was calling for one of my residents because I had a bleeder I can't find which I found when he was already wearing gloves hehehe. Anyway I felt like a surgeon suture-ligating the vessel and then continuing on reattaching the muscles. I think I really enjoyed doing it even if I was half asleep, it was 2 am in the morning. By the time I was sewing the skin together, we had ran out of anesthesia and he was squirming. Good thing he's so drunk he really can't focus on his pain. By the way I was doing this on his left arm while his right arm was handcuffed to the stretcher (in case he runs away?!). I remember enduring his stomach turning smell, his naturally bad-odored body (hahaha) and his vomit (remember he's drunk) - lots of it urgghhh.

To cap it up, this morning while getting ready to go up to endorsement-meeting, I (along with two more residents) got hijacked by Dr. Roxas (senior resident-on-leave) to help him to do a mastectomy (for a consultant) at the Philippine Heart Center. It was my first time to see the PHC OR. Nice... It's not new but I can see that when it was built, it must have been the most advanced thing on the eastern hemisphere. It's still very well-equipped but old has blended with the new already. Heart lung machine just lying on the side. They have laminar-flow, where bacteria-filtered air in the room is directed in one direction only via an entire wall that looks like a radiator and a vacuum on the other side. This helps in keeping the air sterile.

One of the things I liked about the design of this building is that it's so intelligently designed that hospital staff and visitors/patients/family are separated functionally and physically. It has been already modified but I can see the intention of the designers, hospital staff can go around without meeting the public, separate corridors, even in the operating room. Patient's enter from one side, staff on the other you have to necessarily pass through the changing rooms to get to the OR so you can't cheat. The OR lounge area has a great view of the courtyard, scrub suits are provided for. Sigh... you can't complain about anything. I deeply thank Mrs. Marcos for this. This is one thing she did good. Kudos.

This makes me think If I still want to be a surgeon, going full-circle back to my first interest. Can't I be all of it? If I can only live forever...

Wednesday, September 03, 2008

E.R. Surgery : My First Duty

It was fun I must say. I really have been "benign" (most of the time) and am I glad. Our new groupmate, and my duty mate Marga's a blast! I heard an unstable gunshot wound was already called in to come in any minute around dinner time but the patient didn't arrive so we presumed he died en route. Me and Marga sewed up a man who got hacked by a broken bottle multiple times, I helped up our resident repair a man who got hit by a hollowblock on his head. I called my resident to do this because his head was a mess and there were so many spouting arteries I just couldn't take my heart to give this patient an underqualified "surgeon" (hehehe). We also had three burn patients. They were victims of their leaky LPG stove. It's funny... with one look I could tell who's "nagiinarte" lang with their injuries... the real serious ones are the ones that don't make a fuss... We had several people who had no visible injuries who are just moaning and trashing around... I felt hitting them for real so they'd know hehehe hate them attention seeking stupid people who takes away our time to rest and attend to people who really need us.

I wasn't able to sleep but i'll live. Well, we slept through the audit hahaha our entire row was asleep. I'm sure the resident on the grill was happy we did not witness his downfall.

Monday, September 01, 2008

Just Some Stuff

I was really REALLY ANGRY about an hour ago. This son of a bitch jeepney driver waited for 10 minutes on one side of Muñoz and 15 minutes on the other side!? WTF! I mean could he be anymore money-hungry!? Project 8 to Pantranco could be taken 15 mintues driving and 30 minutes on a "non-masuwapang" jeep. This jeep took me 1 hour 10 mintues. Talk about injustice. I just hope I don't see this man in my E.R. ... then we'll see...

My mom told me Mar Roxas is running next presidential elections... hmmm... I have already decided to vote for Bayani Fernando if he runs but this news is making me think now if Mr. Roxas is more suited. Bayani is really a good choice but he has a bit of the "crazy" gene in him. I totally get him don't get me wrong but it may be the "crazy" gene in me too. hehehe.