Saturday, November 26, 2016

Keighley News has a couple of interesting stories. On the one hand:
Yorkshire drinks entrepreneur Sir James Aykroyd – owner of the famous Brontë Liqueur – has presented the Brontë Society with the original front door key of the Haworth village parsonage.
The presentation was made to Ann Dinsdale, principal curator of the Brontë Parsonage Museum as part of the year-long celebrations of Charlotte Brontë’s birth.
Sir James’ great-grandfather, the industrialist Sir James Roberts, originally bought and gifted the parsonage to the Brontë Society in 1928. (...)
Sir James said: “I'm delighted to pass the parsonage key into the custodianship of the Brontë Society.
"As a Yorkshireman I'm fiercely proud of my great grandfather’s role in securing the Brontë family home for posterity and in the continuing historic connection between my family and Haworth.”  (Miran Rahman)
On the other hand:
An artwork which inspired one of Charlotte Brontë's own creative efforts is to be auctioned off in Ilkley.
The watercolour painting, which is called "An Italian Scene", is by 19th century artist George Barret and was the basis for a drawing by Charlotte.
She worked from an 1830 engraving of the original picture, and her copy hangs in the Brontë Parsonage Museum. (...)
The Barret picture has been owned by Yorkshire-born composer David Jennings, who now lives in County Durham. (...)
"I typed the details of this engraving back into the Internet to research when the engraving was published and was astonished to find a link to the Brontës.
"I contacted Ann Dinsdale at the parsonage with my findings, and she posted me the relevant pages from a book called The Art of the Brontës, that has Charlotte's copy illustrated.
"My picture is possibly the only picture in private hands that was copied by one of the Brontës – all the others are probably in museums."
The original painting is due to be auctioned at Hartleys Auctioneers and Valuers on November 30 at Victoria Hall Salerooms, Little Lane, Ilkley. (Miran Rahman)
The auction catalogue says:
Estimated Price: 1000-1500£

Of Brontë Interest, George Barret Jr. (1767-1842),
An Italian Scene, watercolour and pencil, unsigned, label for Michael Bryan Gallery London verso, also lotting number for Bonhams Sale 27 Feb 2007 Lot 265, 12 3/4" x 18 3/4", gilt frame Note: A pencil copy of this picture made by Charlotte Bronte now hangs in the Bronte Parsonage Museum, Haworth, Charlotte copied it from an engraving of the picture made in 1830 and published in the 1831 "Forget Me Not" Annual, a copy of which was owned by the Brontë family. See "The Art of the Brontës" by Christine Alexander and Jane Sellars (Cambridge University Press 1995) Pg. 179.
Also in Keighley News you can see how the Brontë Parsonage staff celebrates their White Rose Award:
The Haworth museum was Highly Commended in the Best Large Attraction category of the Yorkshire-wide tourist awards.
Brontë Society representatives were among|1,100 people who attended the awards ceremony in Harrogate last week.
Kitty Wright, Executive Director of the Brontë Society said: “We are thrilled that the museum was a runner-up for this major award.
“The competition was very strong and being recognised in this way is testament to the hard work and dedication of all our fantastic staff and volunteers, of whom we are very proud.
“It’s the perfect ending to Charlotte’s bicentenary year.” (David Knights)
The York Press covers the book signing session by Alan Titterington at the Pyramid Gallery, presenting his book St John in the Wilderness:
Yorkshire author Alan Titterington will sign copies of his book St John In The Wilderness at a charity event at Pyramid Gallery in York this evening from 6pm until 8.30pm.
Pyramid Gallery has occupied a 15th century building at 43 Stonegate since 1992. “Before that it was a guest house for university students with a tiny shop at the front that sold Christian postcards and pamphlets,” recalls gallery owner Terry Brett. “But in 1848 and 1849 it was rented out to a family named Titterington, who had escaped from the shame of bankruptcy and public vilification in the West Riding.Controversially in his book, Alan claims that Branwell was a contributor to sister Emily’s epic Wuthering Heights, writing some of the darker, more dramatic scenes he claims were far beyond the imagination of a parson’s daughter sheltered within the confines of a genteel rural Yorkshire parsonage. Before its publication, Branwell was said to have been reading extracts from Emily’s work from his diary in the pubs around Halifax and just such a scene is described in the novel at The White Lion in Mytholmroyd, near Halifax. (...)
Going against previous historians’ beliefs, not least those of Daphne Du Maurier, the author claims even more controversially that Branwell’s dismissal from his tutor’s position at Thorp Green, near York, was not due to a known affair with his employer’s wife Lydia Robinson.
“They were friends of the Brontës and John Titterington was a close friend and patron of artist and poet Branwell Brontë, who had sadly passed away before the dramatic events that forced the Titterington family into exile in York.” (...)
Charlotte Brontë and her sister Anne, in her dying days, together with their friend Ellen Nussey, made one last visit to York Minster en route to Scarborough, shortly to become the final resting place of Anne, the only Brontë to be buried away from Haworth.
The author claims they made a visit to 43 Stonegate to have tea with their friend Mary Titterington and her children, later to be joined by John, by then on restricted day-release from the prison.
In return for friendship and financial assistance, brother Branwell, an aspiring portrait painter, repaid John’s kindnesses by painting oil portraits of him and his wife Mary. The paintings’ passage over 150 years from origination in their home at Higgin Chamber in Boulderclough, near Sowerby, Halifax, into the author’s possession is carefully recorded in the book.
The Globe and Mail interviews the author Deborah Levy:
What’s the best romance in literature?
The Lover by Marguerite Duras is a masterpiece. It’s about an impoverished young French woman in 1930s Saigon who has a culturally forbidden sexual encounter with an older Chinese banker. More existential than feminist, it is told with mind-blowing passion and intensity. Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë has got to be one of the most enduring literary romances. I once taught that novel to an early morning class of students, many of whom had jobs at night working in bars or as security guards. So, to test if they were awake, I said, ‘Today, we’re going to look at the opening chapter of Charlotte Brontë by Jane Eyre.’ No one corrected me.
The Upcoming reviews the play Isabella at Theatre Utopia in Croydon:
Combining unaccompanied song, dance and choice lines from the original text (“You were my sun, Catherine, but the day is over,” says Heathcliff), Isabella manages to capture the raw energy of childhood and the world-ending importance of its characters’ ups and downs. The theatre company proves that well placed moments of silence can be brutally effective.
The production features a capable troupe of five, but it is Anya Williams in the titular role who deserves special mention. She is nuanced, subtle, blithely energetic and uses her voice with sensitivity to the small space.
For audience members who aren’t familiar with the book, this play might be a little difficult to follow. The importance of the smaller parts are lost in such a condensed format and the nature of some of the relationships don’t get a chance to be properly established. But for those who do know the novel, it’s clear that The Idle Hour have picked out their story with care and intuition. It will make audience members want to dig out their own battered copy for another read. (Laura Foulger)
Platform NTSU Magazine talks about a piece of public art in Nottingham:
‘Each month, I make the same familiar walk to and from Nottingham railway station. However my most recent trip was different; I hopped off the train in usual fashion and came across a colourful spectacle beneath the bridge over Station Street.
I later found out that it was the vibrant ‘Line of Light’ work of Jo Fairfax; produced to celebrate Nottingham’s UNESCO City of Literature status. Every day of the year, a new five-word line of poetry will be projected onto the dark brick wall of the underpass. These alternating inspirational words will continually bring a new burst of energy to the urban area. (Ella Bowers)
The poem is Verses by Lady Geralda (1836).

The Telegraph talks about the upcoming Christmas season at UK TV:
To Walk Invisible (BBC One). Nothing says Christmas like a lavish BBC One costume drama. This year's offering is a one-off film inspired by the lives of the Brontë sisters. Complex Emily (Chloe Pirrie), ambitious Charlotte (Finn Atkins) and determined Anne (Charlie Murphy) face a variety of crises and obstacles in their journeys on the way to becoming literary icons. Meanwhile, they grow up in between their vicar father (Jonathan Pryce) and ne'er-do-well brother Branwell (Adam Nagaitis), a frequently destructive and dangerous young man. (Adam White)
Bleeding Cool on fandom:
Fandom has been around for a lot longer than people realize, even in that way that goes beyond mild interest and towards those deeper fascinations that tend to spawn related activities. Charlotte and Emily Brontë wrote stories as children in the 1830s that we’d think of as fan fiction today.  (Mark Seifert)
The Times reviews David Astor by Jeremy Lewis:
This biography of the multimillionaire who owned and edited The Observer is shot through with a magnificent sly humour. To demonstrate he was “a refugee from my family”, David Astor visited the Rhondda and helped to unload a lorry. He didn’t know what a mortgage was, was ignorant of overdrafts and the realities of everyday expenditure, assumed that everyone on the staff of his newspaper had a private income, and employed Kim Philby to cover the Middle East because “he seems an extremely reliable chap and he has created a good impression”. The foreign editor was appointed “on the basis of an essay he’d written on one of the Brontë sisters”. (Roger Lewis)
Caitlin Moran's Celebrity Watch at the Times has a Brontë reference:
CW is always ready to tap a toe and twitch a hip to the tunes of Britney Spears. It once got caught in a 45-minute repeating loop, singing the “Woman-womanizer/ Oh oh!/ You’re a womanizer/ Oh oh oh oh oh/ oh oh oh oh/ Womanizer/ Womanizer/ Womanizer oh” from Womanizer— which, looking back, probably did materially affect the others visiting the Brontë parsonage at the time.
The Yorkshire Post presents the book Alice in Westminster: The Political Life of Alice Bacon:
Alice never married and never had children. Her contemporaries Barbara Castle and Jennie Lee both married but neither had children.
In his autobiography, Leeds East MP Denis Healey said that Alice had something of Jane Eyre but unlike Jane, “never found her Mr Rochester”. (Rachel Reeves)
Cape Cod Times suggests films to see with your children:
You don’t want to wait too long to show your kids old black-and-white movies. It could be the musical “Top Hat” (1935), with the phenomenal dancing and breezy humor of Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers, or the gangster movie “Angels With Dirty Faces” (1938), with James Cagney and the Dead End Kids, or the comedy “Topper” (1937), with Cary Grant and Constance Bennett, or the romance “Wuthering Heights” (1939), with Laurence Olivier and Merle Oberon (bonus: It might get them to read Emily Brontë). (Tim Miller)
Powerful women in New Scotia. The Chronicle Herald reports:
The Women’s Executive Network has released its 100 Most Powerful list, and three Nova Scotians made the cut. (...)
Ulrike Bahr-Gedalia, president and CEO of Digital Nova Scotia, has more than 20 years of experience across both public and private sectors. (...)
She told the network that one of her favourite, most inspirational lines is from the book Jane Eyre that reads: “Speak I must.”
The Irish Times on Irish musicians (or inspirations):
It was another second-generation Irish writer, Emily Brontë, who inspired Bush’s 1978 debut single Wuthering Heights. When it reached number 1, the 19-year-old singer was thrust into the limelight as one of the most exciting young talents of her era. Bush increasingly sought control over the way her work and image were presented. She famously championed the release of Wuthering Heights in the face of record company scepticism and, having won that battle, never looked back. (Johnny Rogan)
The Record reviews the film The Handmaiden:
For all the bilingual contortions of the dialogue (the theatrical version features color-coded Korean and Japanese subtitles), Park's movie speaks more than fluently in a Western-friendly cinematic vernacular. You may be reminded of Gothic romances like "Jane Eyre" and "Rebecca," or the Euro-noir manipulations of "Diabolique" and "Gaslight." (Justin Chang)
The Huffington Post lists literary romances:
3. Jane Eyre and Mr Rochester — Jane Eyre
Despite undergoing a number of trials and tribulations, their loyalty to one another prevails. We get to see their love on a number of different levels, not just that initial spark and attraction. (Louise Verity)
Dagens Nyheter (Sweden) reviews Isabelle Arsenault and Fanny Britt's Jane, le renard et moi in its Swedish translation: Jane, Räven Och Jag.
Ensamheten är monumental och blyertsgrå, tills Helén slår upp Charlotte Brontës ”Jane Eyre”. Där flödar plötsligt färgen i röd himmel och grön natur, blåa väggar och Jane Eyres kritvita, stiliserade ansikte som stirrar på läsaren. En glädje? Nja, det är ändå de detaljrika blyertsteckningarna som är viktigast och mest genomarbetade, med vackert skuggade stadsmiljöer och människors uttrycksfulla rörelser. Det är bara Helén som inte ser det. (Lotta Olson) (Translation)
La Tercera (Chile) talks with the artist José Pedro Godoy:
Me gusta mucho Stefan Zweig, quien escribió la biografía sobre María Antonieta; Manuel Puig, Mishima, Truman Capote; en el verano leí La historia del amor de Nicole Krauss y me encantó, también Cumbres Borrascosas, que la leí cuando estaba en la Patagonia, y si hiciera una película de ese libro, lo situaría ahí.  (Denisse Espinoza A.) (Translation)
Les Inrocks (France) loves the latest work by Weyes Blood:
Comme sa pop débarquée de l’âge d’or des seventies, dont les orchestrations vintage et les chœurs célestes nous triturent l’âme avec la même force que la relecture des Hauts de Hurlevent d’Emily Brontë. (Translation)
France Info reviews a recent concert of the Danish singer Agnes Obel:
"Riverside", un des morceaux-phares de son premier album "Philarmonics", est quant à lui magnifiquement revisité et crée une ambiance oscillant entre les Oiseaux d'Alfred Hitchcock et les Hauts de Hurlevent d'Emilie Brontë. (Translation)
The Times presents a new reader with the name Brontë. Pyrsephone reviews both Jane Eyre and Villette.

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