Category Archives: Everything Else

The Cat’s Meow

Dear Friends,

After reading an article in the New York Post, today we wanted to set aside the theatre and discuss something even more important in our lives.

Cats.

No, not the musical. But actual cats. We have four of these lovable and amazing creatures, who bring so much joy to our lives. We have often looked at them and wondered how better to communicate with them and now researcher Susanne Schötz is helping us. She is a professor at Lund University in Sweden and her new book, The Secret Language of Cats, will be released on November 6th.

In The Secret Language of Cats, Schötz offers a crash course in the phonetic study of cat sounds. She introduces us to the full range of feline vocalizations and explains what they can mean in different situations, and she gives practical tips to help us understand our cats better.

cats

It is translated into English by Peter Kuras and is available for pre-order on Amazon right now by clicking here.

And to leave you with a bit of cuteness during all the political ugliness right now, we thought we’d share some pictures of our four cats. Their names are Dorothy Parker (we got her at the Algonquin Hotel), Ondine, Juliet, and McClain Stevenson.

home office

Best wishes,
Philip & Marilyn Langner

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The Power of Theatre

Dear Friends,

One more prior newsletter to share with you before we head back to New York City and the realities of summer coming to an end.

We cannot—CANNOT—stress the importance that the theatre can—and should!—have in the political realm. The tradition started with Shakespeare himself, and who knows, perhaps even before that!

Our friend Arthur Miller once said that it is the job of an artist to remind people of what they have chosen to forget. And in this political climate, nothing could be more true!

Best,
Philip & Marilyn

The Theatre Guild Newsletter

Dear Friends,

Today we wanted to discuss with you an incredible theatre happening that occurred a couple of weeks ago:

It is the conflict between The Theatre, as represented by Hamilton, and the Government-to-be, as represented by Vice-President Elect Mike Pence.

As you all know, Vice President-Elect Pence went to a performance of Hamilton where he was specifically addressed by the cast at the end of the performance (their spokesperson being Brandon Dixon).

Mr. Dixon made a plea to Vice President-Elect Pence–as a representative of our new government starting 20th of January.  The cast requested that Vice President-Elect Pence look out for their interests, aka those of the common people.  While Mr. Pence was walking out of the theatre at the time of the speech, he stopped and listened to what Mr. Harris had to say.

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To us, it is a fascinating happening.  It is The Theatre…

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Summer Update

Dear Friends,

We hope this finds you well and enjoying your summer! We cannot believe how quickly it has passed by—but here we are in mid-August and we wanted to share with you a few updates.

Our new play Adoption Roulette, which we are featuring for our Centennial Celebrations next year, will be having readings in Connecticut in the next few weeks. We are so excited that there has been so much interest and support in this important play about a Connecticut couple trying to adopt a child in Russia. It is good, and we cannot wait to move it forward! In addition to readings, we are actively looking for an actress to play the main character. More details as things progress.

In other news, it’s that time of the year when we pack it up and head down the coast with our family for a bit of r&r before our granddaughters go back to school. During this time, we’ll take the opportunity to resend some past Newsletters of interest.

That’s the news from here!

Happy summer!
Philip & Marilyn

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A True American Hero

Dear Friends,

We have a big event to discuss with you today. It concerns whom we are calling America’s Hero of the Century: Senator John McCain.

He spent over 5 years in a POW camp in North Vietnam (and we’re still wondering how in God’s name could we have gone to war with a country 10,000 miles away that no one ever heard of and managed to kill over 58,000 of our soldiers!?!)

In today’s political climate, it is something we should take to heart. And one of the things that Senator McCain is known for is standing up to whomever he feels is wronging the people of America, whether it be short-sighted presidents or dissidents in the US Senate, even if they are in the same party!

Through it all, Senator McCain refuses to give up on the American people and works tirelessly for them, which is why we consider him to be THE AMERICAN HERO OF THE CENTURY.

We are writing to you today because he has just published a new book –- his memoirs, which we urge you to read.

To order his book from Amazon, click on the picture below:

john mccain book

Best regards,
Philip & Marilyn

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Making A Statement

Dear Friends,

Sometimes you have to put your money where your mouth is—and Mark Wahlberg has done just that.

In light of the tremendous pay gap between him and co-star Michelle Williams for reshoots during the filming All The Money in The World (when our dear friend Christopher Plummer joined the cast), Mr. Wahlberg donated the gap in pay between his and Ms. Williams to the Time’s Up Legal Defense Fund. He was quoted as saying:

I 100 percent support the fight for fair pay and I’m donating the $1.5 million to the Time’s Up Legal Defense Fund in Michelle Williams’ name.

Additionally, William Morris Endeavor—the agency representing both Wahlberg and Williams—donated $500,000 to Time’s Up.

For those of you who are not familiar, Time’s Up is dedicated to fighting harassment in the workplace, starting with a legal-defense fund for abuse victims. Their mission station from their website:

Powered by women, TIME’S UP addresses the systemic inequality and injustice in the workplace that have kept underrepresented groups from reaching their full potential. We partner with leading advocates for equality and safety to improve laws, employment agreements, and corporate policies; help change the face of corporate boardrooms and the C-suite; and enable more women and men to access our legal system to hold wrongdoers accountable.

If you’re interested in learning more or donating to this amazing program, click here.

Everyone’s voice deserves to be heard—thank you to the wonderful people at Time’s Up and all their incredible donors, like Mr. Wahlberg. He could have made a moderate donation; however, he chose to do what was right—and fair—and we commend him highly for that decision.

Best regards,
Philip & Marilyn

 

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March On NYC.

Dear Friends,

On Monday, we celebrated the life of Reverend Martin Luther King, Jr. and we find that so many of his profound words still have so much meaning in today’s world.
One of his most famous quotes reads: Freedom is never voluntarily given by the oppressor; it must be demanded by the oppressed.

And it is in that spirit that we are writing to you. The Women’s March Alliance is organizing a march this Saturday and we wanted to urgently invite you to join. We received the following email yesterday from ATPAM:

Dear Member of ATPAM –

I invite you to join IATSE President Matthew D. Loeb, myself and sisters and brothers from other IATSE NY area locals as we take to the streets for the New York City Women’s March this coming Saturday, January 20. The march begins at 11am and will go down Central Park West, across Central Park South and down 6th Avenue, ending at 43rd Street at around 4pm.

Meeting place for the IATSE cohort will be on Central Park West between 65th and 66th Streets, near the Holy Trinity Lutheran Church. Look for the IATSE signs!

Bring a sign (no wood or metal), do your vocal warmups (so they can hear us down in Washington!) and keep an eye on the weather reports to dress accordingly. Comfortable shoes are a must.

If you can’t attend the march in New York, check with your local labor council – either city or state – to find out where people are marching in your area.

Let’s keep the pressure on and continue to make noise about issues that affect working men and women across this country.

I hope to see you on Saturday!

In solidarity,

Nick

We suggest that you support this powerful movement—even if you cannot make it to the march, there are many ways to support it. For you, for your daughters, for your mothers, for your sisters, for your great-great-granddaughters.

To join the march (which starts right outside our door step!), donate to the cause or learn more click here: https://womensmarchalliance.org/2018-womens-march-on-nyc/

Best regards,
Philip & Marilyn

 

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Pearl Harbor

Dear Friends,

Today is December 08, 2017—one day and 76 years after the bombing of Pearl Harbor and our entry into WWII.

I remember the day so well, exactly where I was standing by a building up in Connecticut about 2:00 pm on a Sunday afternoon.  What an incredible shock!

In recent years, I visited the War Memorial in Honolulu—built where the battleship, USS Arizona was sunk with 1,700 sailors on board.  The Memorial is quite lovely and poignant and very significant.

It seems so easy to forget a war that happened nearly 80 years ago.  How many wars have we had since then? How about Vietnam?  Every now and then when I happen to see a map of the Far East, I ask myself “how in God’s name could we have gone there and done that?”

A woman who worked for my parents was married to a man who died in the Bataan death march, where 700 American soldiers were marched through the Philippines shortly after Pearl Harbor.

Please forgive all of these musings.  The resulting thought is, of course, why?  Why do we have to get into wars?  Why do so many people have to die?  Now we have North Korea so eager to do so—they are reported in the paper today as saying “we have to go to war very soon.”

I guess they don’t remember Pearl Harbor, where 2,400 Americans were killed and another 1,200 wounded.  Nor must they remember 340,000 Japanese who died because of the atomic bombs dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki on August 06 and August 09, 1945 respectively.  Nor do they remember the nearly 1.4 million people who died in the Vietnam War.

We cannot forget—or we are doomed to repeat history.  What can we do?

Sincerely,
Philip and Marilyn

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Courage in Reporting

Dear Friends,

An amazing thing happened to us a few days ago when we watched a reporter, Ronan Farrow, reading a long, fascinating article that he wrote about film producer, Harvey Weinstein.

What struck us so much about this was the fact that Ronan is someone that we knew very well at the age of 3-4 years old, when he lived in Newtown, CT with his wonderful mother, the extraordinary Mia Farrow.

Mia is a wonderful lady who has raised—and dedicated herself—to seeing that children without parents could still have a happy family life.

Now here is Ronan, 29 years old—with so many degrees and abilities—commanding the air waves.  His report, published in The New Yorker, “Harvey Weinstein’s Accusers Tell Their Stories,” was the result of nearly a year of researching facts and working to find someone willing to publish it.  Originally he went to NBC, for whom
he worked at the time, and was told it wasn’t “reportable.”  Thankfully The New Yorker thought it was.
ronan farrow
It takes courage to stand up and never stop believing in what you are working on—and we are so proud of Ronan for having the courage to not back down and not give up until his story was heard.

To read the terrific article he wrote in The New Yorker, click here.

Best regards,
Philip & Marilyn

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Tuning In

Dear Friends,

We are writing today about a wonderful TV news program, which “tells it like it is,” The Rachel Maddow Show.

What we love about her is the fact that she really researches her topics fully and isn’t afraid to speak her mind.  In this day and age where the news is hard to get, Rachel is a refreshing source of information.

In an article on PoliticusUSA, Jason Easley writes:

As the American people get more engaged and look for factual news and information, they are increasingly turning to MSNBC as the Rachel Maddow led network is growing three times faster in total viewers than Fox News in primetime.”

Click here for the full article:
Rachel Maddow
Of course, we think it would be great if she’d throw her hat in the political arena!  In the meantime, we’ll just continue tuning in to her show weeknights at 9pm ET/6pm PT on MSNBC.

Best regards,
Philip & Marilyn Langner

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The Nazi Officer’s Wife

Dear Friends,

Today rather than recommend a play, we are going to tell you about a marvelous book called The Nazi Officer’s Wife.

It is a terrific read that tells the story of a young Jewish woman.  It is the story of her life in Vienna just before Hilter came to power through the end of the Second World War.

This book takes you on her journey—as a young woman at university to the slow demoralization and loss of everything familiar to her—including her family—as Hilter escalated his anti-Semitic laws in Germany, Austria, and conquered countries.

Even if you are not interested in WWII, this is an amazing tale about one woman’s journey and struggle to survive against all odds.

You can order it from Amazon by clicking on this link.

Best regards—and reading!
Philip & Marilyn

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