NYU professor leads talk on persona of Frank Sinatra

first_imgThe Notre Dame department of Film, Television and Theatre hosted professor of cinema studies Dana Polan of New York University on Tuesday night for a talk on singer and actor Frank Sinatra, whom Polan called an American entertainment icon, particularly after World War II.The talk, titled “Ring-a-ding-ding: Performance Styles in the Movies and Music of Frank Sinatra,” took place at the Browning Cinema in the DeBartolo Performing Arts Center and was followed by a screening of the 1955 Sinatra film “Young at Heart.” The department of American Studies and the Gender Studies and Teaching Beyond the Classroom programs also sponsored the event. Jack Lyons | The Observer Dana Polan, a New York University professor, uses scenes from Frank SInatra’s films to facilitate a discussion on his persona before a screening of the 1955 film “Young at Heart” on Tuesday.The visit by Polan overlapped with “Sinatra,” a class Film, Television and Theatre professor Pam Wojcik is teaching this semester.Polan discussed the “voyeuristic” nature of film throughout his lecture, touching on the saying, “You’re watching something that’s for you, but is pretending you’re not really there.”Few stars did this better than Sinatra, Polan said.Polan used multiple clips of the star exhibiting what he called a “confrontational” style, where a confident Sinatra establishes a bond with an audience that “avowed how he seemed to be singing personally to each audience member,” Polan said.However, Polan said this manner of “force strutting and swagger,” which appeared in Sinatra’s more energetic swing tunes, was only one side of the Sinatra coin. Polan also touched on the other side; he noted that, while Sinatra’s ballads addressed the singer himself, the performance still existed for the purpose of the audience.In addition to his ability to cross emotions in his performance, both Polan and Wojcik said they studied Sinatra for his ability to cross media.While known primarily as a singer, Sinatra’s acting career earned praises from critics and audiences alike. Appearing alongside the method actors of the 1950s, the untrained Sinatra channeled his abilities to become what Wojcik called a “method singer” to portray his complex characters.“There’s a virtuosic performance of vulnerability,” Wojcik said in an interview. “He’s broken in so many ways that I think are surprising if you just think of him as a singer.”Despite his vulnerability, Sinatra existed as an icon of masculinity in 1950s American culture, Polan said.“The person who would want to be Elvis is an Elvis impersonator, whereas the person who wants to be Sinatra is every American in the postwar period,” Polan said.For Polan, who is authoring a book on the legendary Sinatra album “Songs for Swingin’ Lovers” with Sinatra scholar Chuck Granata, Sinatra’s performance resonates even today from his ability to captivate an audience while making it appear natural at the same time.“Part of his power is that it doesn’t seem studied, it doesn’t seem mannered, it seems like who he is, even if it is a performance,” Polan said.Tags: Browning Cinema, dana polan, Department of Film Television and Theatre, Frank Sinatralast_img read more

Colorado credit union sues Federal Reserve Bank

first_img continue reading » The Fourth Corner Credit Union asked a Colorado federal judge last month to force the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City to issue a master account that would enable the Denver-based state chartered credit union to serve social groups that support legalizing marijuana.The credit union’s civil complaint filed Sept. 29 in U.S. District Court in Denver argues federal law “unambiguously creates a non-discretionary statutory obligation” that requires FRB-KC issue a master account to all depository institutions. The lawsuit alleged that FRB-KC has “invoked an illegal discriminatory procedure” by requesting information from the credit union that the FRB-KC is not entitled to receive from any depository institution that applies for a master account. The credit union is asking a federal judge in Denver to render a declaratory judgment and grant a mandatory injunction that would order the federal reserve bank to immediately issue the master account.TFCCU initially applied for a master account with FRB-KC in November 2014 after it received a state charter to serve the legalized recreational marijuana industry in Colorado. However, the credit union has since changed its business plan to serve social groups supporting the legalization of marijuana. The credit union also said it would not serve marijuana-related businesses in the state until there is a change in federal law that would authorize financial institutions to serve the pot industry. 12SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblrlast_img read more

COLUMN: Newfound success is fuel for the Trojan fire

first_imgLast September, on a damp, dreary Friday night in Salt Lake City, Clay Helton squeezed into a tiny room in the bowels of Rice-Eccles Stadium after a devastating, nail-biting loss — one that dropped his team to 1-3 — and answered questions from the media.The head coach lamented how the win slipped away, how field conditions impacted the final score, how he thought this would be the game that would key a turnaround for USC. Instead, the Trojans were off to their worst start since 2001, and whispers arose regarding Helton’s uncertain job security.“I’m heartbroken for [our players],” Helton said after the game.If that moment was the nadir of Helton’s tenure, then everything since has been a meteoric rise toward the zenith, and it’s a meteor that shows no signs of slowing. He made the right gamble in starting redshirt freshman quarterback Sam Darnold, won eight straight games to finish the regular season, claimed a Rose Bowl victory in one of the most dramatic finishes in the bowl’s history and ended the season ranked No. 3 in the country. Now, a month later, Helton signed an absolute killer of a recruiting class on National Signing Day on Wednesday that fanned the flames on the three words that we’ve been dying to hear for years: USC is back.Entering the day, the Trojans had their eyes on no fewer than eight prized recruits. They landed six of them. To put it into perspective, that’s like hitting no traffic and six of eight green lights driving down Figueroa during rush hour.From four-star linebacker Levi Jones picking USC over both Florida and Florida State in epic, troll-like fashion (seriously, Google this) in the early morning to the afternoon commitments from Hawkins High product Joseph Lewis — ESPN’s No. 1-ranked wide receiver — and versatile four-star athlete Greg Johnson, the good news kept pouring in.In between, the Trojans corralled three more four-star commits in defensive tackle Jay Tufele, offensive tackle Austin Jackson and tight end Josh Falo, also ranked No. 1 in his position by ESPN. And all 19 of their previous commitments stayed onboard to seal up a strong recruiting class at nearly every position, enough to push it into the top five of most national rankings by the end of the day.It’s clear that this class — which features 14 players in ESPN’s Top 300 — will address positions of need for the Trojans. They’ll get Tufele and fellow four-star recruit Marlon Tuipulotu to shore up a defensive line weakened by the graduation of veteran defensive anchor Stevie Tu’ikolovatu and the departure of Noah Jefferson. They’ll add four offensive linemen — three of whom are four stars — to counter Zach Banner, Chad Wheeler and Damien Mama leaving the offensive front. They’ll bring in a couple of imposing wide receivers in Lewis and Randal Grimes, who will help step in the shoes of four departing “big men” — in Helton’s words — in JuJu Smith-Schuster, Darreus Rogers, De’Quan Hampton and Isaac Whitney. They’ll have an Adoree’ Jackson-like player in Johnson, who is 247Sports’ No. 1-ranked athlete in the class, able to play running back, wide receiver and defensive back. And they’ll even have a potential Sam Darnold Part II in four-star quarterback Jack Sears, who went to the same high school as Darnold in San Clemente.The Trojans racked up so many top-notch recruits on Wednesday that it triggered my Golden State Warriors-fan guilt — you know, the tiniest bit of pity that you feel when all the best players wind up on your team. After all, the greatest game plan to beat the top players is to, well, just have them play for your team.“They’re either going to be on your team, or you’re going to play against them,” Helton said. “The guys that we signed today I don’t want to play against. They’re talented.”While it’s true that USC will always draw talented recruits purely from its brand name — the Trojans still managed the 13th-ranked recruiting class in 2013 despite losing scholarships because of NCAA sanctions — Helton’s impressive haul speaks to more than just the football program’s legacy.It speaks to his ability to combine the glamour of USC with his own recruiting skills to convince talented players to don the Cardinal and Gold. It shows that he is far more than just a coach riding the coattails of a phenom quarterback to success. And it proves the benefits of tapping a long-time assistant in Helton to the head coaching position rather than hiring from outside the team -— because Helton used the relationships he developed during his time as an assistant coach to bring in this cream-of-the-crop recruiting class.“There’s basically three ways how you win a kid’s trust. One, your character. Two, your competency in your knowledge and how you can develop them. And three, let them know that you care about them,” Helton said, pointing out that USC had followed 21 of its 23 commits over a long period of time. “That takes time. To be able to be here for a number of years and build that relationship, that definitely helps.”With that, USC will enter spring practice with a very positive vibe and a head coach who is proving himself worthy of a prestigious position and winning over critics simply by … winning. Because when you win, people notice. But when you’re USC and you win, people really take notice — specifically, high school seniors making college decisions.When asked if the Rose Bowl win swayed some recruits toward the Trojans, Helton didn’t disagree.“It showed a level of consistency that I thought was important,” Helton said, “and I know it was important to the kids out there [watching] in their homes.”Winning: It cures everything, and it makes that heartbreaking defeat on a rainy Friday night in Utah seem like a really, really long time ago.Eric He is a sophomore studying print and digital journalism. He is also the associating manager of the Daily Trojan. His column, “Grinding Gears,” runs on Fridays.last_img read more