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Articles by Jonathan Spira

Senators Get Crash Course in Combating ‘Distractions’ as Information Overload from Impeachment Sets In

The first day of the actual impeachment proceedings in the Senate chamber began on Wednesday with all 100 senators present observing not only the historic proceedings but also observing numerous rules that any ten-year-old might also be familiar with at dinnertime.
The rules in the Senate during the impeachment proceedings are simple: No mobile phones, no talking, no coffee, and substitutions in their seats by staffers. In other words, none of …

Trump Administration May Extend Travel Ban to Seven Additional Countries

Trump Administration May Extend Travel Ban to Seven Additional Countries

The Trump administration plans to add seven countries to the list of those subject to travel restrictions, officials in the White House said.
The list includes Nigeria, the most populous country in Africa, as well as Belarus, Eritrea, Kyrgyzstan, Myanmar, Nigeria, Sudan, and Tanzania.
Mr. Trump told the Wall Street Journal on Monday at a conference in Davos, Switzerland, that he plans to introduce this measure.
The list has yet to be finalized, …

Review: ‘Sing Street’ at New York Theater Workshop

Sometimes it’s just a question of the right color shoes.  In 1980s Dublin, 16-year-old Conor Lawlor is stuck with brown ones.
Conor, performed brilliantly by Brenock O’Connor who portrayed Olly in “Game of Thrones” and Jon in the Northern Irish sitcom “Derry Girls,” was forced to transfer to a new school as part of his family’s austerity plan in “Sing Street,” a stage adaptation of the 2016 film of the same …

Review: ‘The Investigation: Oratorio in 11 Cantos’ at the National Yiddish Theater Folksbiene

Peter Weiss’ “The Investigation: Oratorio in 11 Cantos” was presented as a reading at the National Yiddish Theater Folksbiene at the Museum of Jewish Heritage in Battery Park City Thursday Evening in conjunction with Theater of War Productions.
The somewhat uneven reading included six of the original 11 cantos, the term German playwrights used for subdivisions, although only one canto – Canto 6 – was presented in its entirety. 
Published in 1964 …

Review: ‘Paddington Gets in a Jam’ at DR2 Theater

Paddington, the friendly bear from Peru who was memorialized with a statue at Paddington Station in London, is the main character in a series of children’s stories by British author Michael Bond.
The bear, who apparently has an outfit for everything as well as a well-known fondness for marmalade, is the star of a new off-Broadway show, “Paddington Gets in a Jam,” at the DR2 Theater.  Appearing as a life-sized puppet …

Review: Vienna Philharmonic’s 2020 New Year’s Day Concert Confronts Link to National Socialist Era

While the Vienna Philharmonic’s New Year’s Day concert is replete with tradition, “the same tradition as last year” as Miss Sophie would be wont to say, those who were paying close attention may have noticed something slightly different.
While I last attended the New Year’s Day concert in person ten years ago, which was conducted by Daniel Barenboim, I grew up watching the broadcasts of the concert with my parents and …

Review and Test Drive: 2019 Lexus ES 350 F Sport

Executive Sedan.  If you weren’t paying attention, that’s what the “ES” in Lexus ES stands for.  Lexus first introduced the ES series in its earliest days back in 1989 a mere seven generations ago.  The ES started as a compact executive sedan and over the years became a mid-sized luxury vehicle.
The seventh generation ES made its debut at the 2018 Beijing Motor Show and was introduced in the United States …