Oscars chief being investigated for sexual harassment

Academy President John Bailey is subject to an internal investigation following three charges of sexual harassment, accorting to US media reports on March 16, 2019. (AFP)
Updated 17 March 2018
0

Oscars chief being investigated for sexual harassment

LOS ANGELES: The president of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, the body which hands out the Oscars, is being investigated for sexual harassment, US media reported on Friday.
The trade publication Variety and CBS News said the Academy immediately opened an investigation after receiving three harassment claims against John Bailey on Wednesday.
In response, the Academy issued a statement saying that it “treats any complaints confidentially to protect all parties.”
The group’s membership committee “reviews all complaints brought against Academy members according to our Standards of Conduct process, and after completing reviews, reports to the Board of Governors.”
It added: “We will not comment further on such matters until the full review is completed.”
In December, the Academy adopted a code of conduct for its members.
Bailey, 75, a cinematographer whose credits include “Groundhog Day” and “The Big Chill,” was elected to a four-year term as head of the Academy in August.
He followed Cheryl Boone Isaacs, an African-American woman who had led the charge to increase racial diversity in the Academy. Her tenure included dealing with the social media-driven #OscarsSoWhite campaign and accusations of racism within the Academy.
Bailey’s brief tenure has been marked by the birth of the #MeToo movement started by actress Alyssa Milano and which went global, highlighting accusations of sexual abuse.
Harvey Weinstein, whose studio Miramax was behind hits such as “Shakespeare In Love” and “Pulp Fiction,” was expelled from the Academy in October following accusations of sexual harassment and abuse by dozens of women.
At a February lunch for this year’s Oscar nominees, Bailey promised the Academy would adopt a “greater awareness and responsibility in balancing gender, race, ethnicity, and religion.”
“The fossilized bedrock of many of Hollywood’s worst abuses are being jackhammered into oblivion,” he said.


Young violinist hits a winning note in Riyadh

Updated 23 July 2018
0

Young violinist hits a winning note in Riyadh

  • Chloe Chua of Singapore is considered the world's foremost youngest pianist
  • Since the opening of its doors to global talent, people in Saudi Arabia have been enjoying electrifying performances of various world-class musicians and singers.

RIYADH: The cultural landscape of Saudi Arabia is changing at a rapid pace and it is fast becoming a hub of cultural activities. 
Since the opening of its doors to global talent, people in Saudi Arabia have been enjoying electrifying performances of various world-class musicians and singers.
The Saudi authorities are leaving no stone unturned to promote local talent and to make the Kingdom part of the global cultural revolution. 
On Saturday, the General Cultural Authority organized yet another unforgettable concert at the King Fahad Cultural Center, which saw the world’s youngest violinist, Chloe Chua from Singapore perform to a spellbound audience. The 11-year-old talented violinist has been a student at the Nanyang Academy of Fine Arts School of Young Talents (SYT) strings section since the age of four. 
She is studying with Yin Ke, string program leader of SYT and recently won the first prize in the Menuhin Competition Geneva 2018. She has been awarded prizes in numerous other competitions, coming first in the 24th Andrea Postacchini International Violin Competition (May 2017) and third in violin group A of the 2nd Zhuhai International Mozart Competition for Young Musicians. 
Chua was accompanied by the internationally distinguished pianist, Gordon Back. Back is an official accompanist at major international violin competitions such as the Queen Elizabeth competition, the Carl Flesch Competition (London), the International Tchaikovsky Competition (Moscow), the International Violin Competition of Indianapolis (US), and the Menuhin Competition (UK).

VIEW OUR PHOTO ALBUM: Chloe Chua's Concert in Riyadh

The pieces of music, which included Beethoven, Mozart and Johan Svendsen, were inspired by different stories and different musical rhythms and drew rapturous applause.
The program began with a 15-minute performance by Eman Gusti, a 20-year-old Saudi pianist who started playing at the age of nine. 
“No one on earth can imagine how I felt when I heard the audience applauded. It is such a great honor,” Gusti told Arab News.
She said she finally felt she had a place to express her passion and an umbrella (the General Culture Authority) to belong to. “Saudi women have a great space to express their enthusiasm in interactive situations and places. I am very happy to be part of this golden era.” 
After her segment, the main performance started with Chua and Back. “I am very happy to perform in Saudi Arabia,” Chua said afterward. “I chose these seven pieces because they are very good in terms of the music, rhythm and themes. I wanted to show that classical music can be a joy to everyone. I chose music because it makes everybody happy, and I can travel around the world to make the world happy.” 
Now Chua and Back are set to perform in Jeddah today. “I am very excited about seeing Jeddah and playing music in front of an audience there,” she said. 
It was the first time Back had played in Saudi Arabia. “It is a very wonderful experience,” he told Arab News.
When asked whether music can bring people from different countries and diverse cultures together, he said: “I think it can, because with music you do not need any language. It transcends languages. It can also unify people. 
“Hopefully I will come back to perform again here in Saudi Arabia,” he said.