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Tuesday, May 3, 2016

22 YEARS OF CLASSIC ARTS SHOWCASE

A few times/year I get eclectic and write about Baroque music and even Shakespeare.
The outer space segment of Humanity's Greatest Challenge will come in two days, for tomorrow I will report on the largest solar energy project in the world...located in Dubai.

But today is the 22nd anniversary of Classic Arts Showcase (CAS).  As far as I know, I'm the only person in Hawaii who watches this program.  It's in low definition, Channel 53, Oceanic, from 6AM to 8AM on weekdays, sometimes.  Also, whoever is managing this program in Olelo regularly screws up, for the shows are many times repeated.  For all these years CAS has produced three 8-hour blocks every day, so there should be almost 25,000 original mixes.  Just this annoyance of Olelo makes me sometimes want to switch to Dish Network, for their channel 9406 covers this program 24 hours/day, every day.   500 stations carry CAS in the U.S. and Canada.  You can also go online.

Mind you, I don't watch CAS all that much.  As I rest in bed in the early morning after I wake up, I jump around the news/sports and other channels, turning to 53 when everything else is uninteresting, which is most of the time.   

What I enjoy is the unexpected pleasure of:

Mr. Rigler was a businessman, a World War II veteran, and a philanthropic lover of the arts who sought to increase that audience in a world that was rapidly discarding classical works in favor of newer mediums and technologies. Mr. Rigler and his business partner Mr. Deutsch invested in a number of classical arts endeavors, notably the New York City Opera and the Kennedy Center in DC, and their estates and the Foundation are what enable the 24-hour continuous CAS programming with no begging.  (Rigler to the left, Deutsch right, with Beverley Sills in the middle)

CAS was modeled after early MTV, to show continuous video clips in random order, with the exceptions being that there are no hosts, VJs, or commercials of any sort, and it seems to have maintained its exact format for all these years. As a lover of classical music, and especially classic dance and theater styles, I get easily exhausted by all things modern, and I often run to CAS as a fast-acting balm, an instantaneous relief that's always there for me.

CAS could cut back on telling who they are and how everything is free and how great Rigler was, by about a factor of ten.  But this break allows me the freedom to switch back to real time for a short while.  Anyway, like this blog site, CAS might now be seeing the light at the end of the tunnel, for Lloyd Rigler passed away in 2003, and left enough money for maybe twenty years, which means there might only be seven years left.  So find out how you can watch Classic Arts Showcase.

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