Music and theater and opera and art and the whole damn thing.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Venus in Fur addendum ...

Has it ever occured to anyone - it might have, it has only just occurred to me - that the idea for One Touch of Venus, the Kurt Weill-Ogden Nash extravaganza starring Mary Martin (Ava Gardner in Hollywood), the story of a young man who kisses an ancient statue of the goddess Aphrodite, whereupon she comes to life and wreaks happy havoc on New York - the show that gave us "Speak Low," the most sensuous of all Broadway theater songs - came to someone (Moss Hart? someone like that) who had been reading Sacher-Masoch's novel Venus in Furs, the foundation document (with de Sade's Justine) of Sado-Masochism, in which the protagonist is violently aroused by a statue of that goddess on the grounds of a sanitarium in eastern Austria-Hungary and then meets, as it were, the goddess's living incarnation?

This came to me not at David Ives's play but on Facebook today, when someone referred to "violating a statue," having mis-spelled "statute."

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