BOSTON

 

One of 太太's oldest and dearest friends BARBARA ITO now resides in Brookline, Mass. and is active in the community contributing as a Soccer Mom and philanthropist. 

When BARBARA ITO married JONATHAN KATZ 太太  came from Hong Kong to attend their wedding celebration in Vancouver at the Yacht Club where we have a few childhood memories?!   太太 and Barb dated brothers in the same family and today we are all still friends and celebrate in life's victories.    

Nancy Rae & Charlie Lyall's son  was the snowboarder who jumped through the Olympics hoop to announce the opening of the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver.  Yeah, Lyalls!!    

THE-E-E-ERE'S JOHNNY: Snowboarder Johnny Lyall isn't a team racer. Still, three billion viewers saw him zoom from the Olympic symbol's centre ring to start the BC Place opening ceremony. Brother Philip scored recently, too, when he and Nimisha Mukerji made the documentary 65 RedRoses about Eva Markvoort's struggle with cystic fibrosis.  - MALCOLM PARRY, VANCOUVER SUN   (item #6)

BOSTON VISIT

太太and her CHELSEA visited NICOLA and ALEXANDER during a mid-term break  a few years ago and had a most wonderful visit in their spacious New England surround.   Uncle Jonathan made delicious donuts for Nicola's class at school and Auntie Barbara spoiled us with Ikura hor d'oeurves  and pancakes (blintzes) and capuccino with maple syrup from the sugar shacks in Vermont.   

Jonathan was featured in the newspaper for his culinary skills and Alexander was mentioned in the local paper for being outstanding in soccer.     Thank you Barb, Jonathan, Nicola and Alexander for a fantastic visit.   We met many of Barb's friends who were kind enough to include us in their activities over the weekend.  Special mention to Carmel, Terry, and Carrie for being so gracious.   We hope to see you again?!

                                                   1 November 2006
Kids eat up lesson in making doughnuts
Jonathan Katz had the kids cut the donuts out of the dough. The kids can hardly wait to eat them once done. (Janet Knott/Globe Staff) By By Andrea Pyenson, Globe Staff November 1, 2006

BROOKLINE -- As the 16 fourth-graders in Ted Wells's class at the Park School file into the school's dining hall on a recent Monday morning, it's hard to tell who is more excited -- the children, some of whom are literally jumping up and down, or Jonathan Katz in his chef's hat, perched in a corner of the room that he has converted into a makeshift kitchen.

A Park School parent, Katz is equipped with everything the class needs to make buttermilk, jelly- and cream-filled doughnuts. The real estate investor completed the Professional Chef's Program at the Cambridge School of Culinary Arts in 1992 and is an accomplished cook. He has been making doughnuts with his children, Nicola, 9, (one of Wells's students) and Alexander, 11, and their classmates since Alexander was in nursery school. "I thought kids should see that cooking was fun and easy and that men could do it, too," he says. "For little kids, dough is very tactile. And who doesn't like the rolling pins?" For that matter, who doesn't like doughnuts? (See story on Page E6.)

Katz has a large bowl filled with yeast dough that will be used with the jelly and "gooey cream" (also known as pastry cream); already measured containers of wet and dry ingredients for the buttermilk doughnuts; a small shaker full of flour, for dusting; a "squeezy thing" (pastry bag) full of pastry cream; raspberry jam that he boiled and strained the night before; several different-size round cutters ; and three rolling pins -- "Big Mama," "Skinny Winnie," and "Mini-Me." He and the kids have 50 minutes to make doughnuts.

Experience has taught the doughnut-maker to work with groups of four. While one group prepares doughnuts, Wells keeps the rest of the class busy with their regular schoolwork and "Mr. Katz's Delicious Doughnuts Tricky Worksheet," which includes a word search, math word problems, a crossword puzzle, and assorted questions, all with a doughnut theme. The kids seem totally engaged.

When the first group of four reports for duty, Katz points to an electric frying pan sitting on the window ledge, blocked off by several chairs, explaining that it is filled with "really, really, really hot oil" and he is the only one who can go near it. He also delivers a short primer on how yeast works to make dough rise. "It's alive!" exclaims Jamie Little, leaning in to get a better look at Katz's dough, which appears to be growing out of its bowl.

The kids turn the dough out onto the table, and Connie Blumenthal starts to roll it out. Once the dough is uniformly flat, everybody starts stamping out small circles. "It wants to get back into a ball shape," Little complains as he and "Mini-Me," the smallest rolling pin, wrestle with his dough.

When the second batch of students move in, Nicola Katz, Nelle Cabot, Gabby Marks, and Hannah Martin cut, fill, and press together the two halves of dough to make each filled doughnut. "It's so mushy," murmurs Marks as she pats her cream-filled creation, then makes the final cut with a flourish. The girls set their doughnuts on a baking sheet to rise a bit longer before handing them over to Katz for frying.

The third and fourth groups are responsible for the buttermilk doughnuts, which unlike the filled ones, have holes in the center and are made without yeast. Baking powder and baking soda cause these "cake" doughnuts to rise.

Jimmy Bell pours dry ingredients into a big bowl. Alexis Lelan adds wet ingredients, and Jonathan Lumley stirs. They pour the dough onto the table, and Katz kneads it a little before the kids roll it out, using the largest pin , "Big Mama." Then they start cutting. "I have been doing this since my kids were three," says Katz, "and every year they do more and I do less. You have to let them do it because if you do it, they're not learning anything."

While the last group works, Katz fries the rounds, about 90 seconds per batch. As they brown, an irresistible scent fills the air. The industrious doughnut-makers begin to grow a bit restless. Katz puts cooked doughnuts on a rack to cool briefly, then into napkin-lined baskets. At last, the impressively patient students line up, single-file, for one buttermilk and one filled doughnut each.

Initially, they eat in silence. Katz can't stand it. "What do you guys think?" he asks. "Do you like the doughnuts?"

A groundswell of requests for seconds says it all. By the time Alexander Katz stops by the dining hall between classes, there isn't a single doughnut left to sample.

We attended the Boston Ballet's performance of Don Quioxte at the Wang Centre Schubert Theatre.

DANCE REVIEW 

Love lifts Boston Ballet's fluffy but fun 'Don Quixote' 

Boston Ballet opened its 43d season Thursday night with the production that put the company on the international map nearly a quarter century ago, Rudolf Nureyev's version of "Don Quixote." This current incarnation shows the ballet has aged well. Nureyev originally choreographed it in 1966, based on the famed Petipa version, and set it on Boston Ballet in 1982, casting himself in the starring role of Basilio. Admittedly, it's a bit fluffy and not particularly cohesive, but it may well be the best of the "Don Quixotes" out there. It's sweet, fun , and jam-packed with dancing.

Nureyev eschews the dark, poignant undercurrents of the knight-errant's misadventures to focus more on the story of two lovers, Basilio and Kitri, given committed performances Thursday night by Yury Yanowsky and the exquisite Lorna Feijoo. Their determination to be together despite her father's attempts to marry her off fuel the ballet's action far more than the old man's tilting at windmills.

It's a busy production, full of crowd scenes enlivened by big ensemble pieces and spirited character dances. The first and third acts have a pseudo-Spanish flair, with flourishing fans, swirling capes, castanets, and nontraditional footwork that tilts flexed feet side to side. The technical facility of the corps looks good -- one hopes the occasional ensemble sloppiness will clear up after opening night.

The ballet offers an excellent showcase for solos and small groups. Melissa Hough was outstanding as a street dancer. A sultry siren enchanting the matadors in the town square, she danced with flair and impeccable precision through various configurations of swords sticking out of the stage.

However, the two lovers have the most impressive and substantive choreography. Feijoo and Yanowsky, who danced the same roles in Boston Ballet's 2003 revival, are at their most convincing in the scenes of playful flirtation and affectionate sparring. Basilio's fake death has some terrific comic touches. But the real workout comes in the famous grand pas de deux, often performed as a stand-alone piece, and in this they were dynamite. Yanowsky, who looked a little stiff at the ballet's start, loosened up and displayed all the verve and pizzazz the character begged for, with crisp footwork and buoyant leaps. He nailed the fiendish alternating mid air turns that Nureyev choreographed for himself.

With her charismatic charm, technical clarity, and expressive arms, Feijoo embodied Kitri with sparkle and flash, dancing with rhythmic verve and linear precision. Her legs sliced through the notorious fouette combination like a machete. Pavel Gurevich was a more virile, elegant Don Quixote than is usually portrayed, Raul Salamanca was a nimble Sancho Panza, and Viktor Plotnikov brought convincing comic physicality to the role of Lorenzo.

Nicholas Georgiadis' s sets tended toward flat and drab, but the costumes were vibrantly colorful. The orchestra, under Jonathan McPhee, gave a commanding performance of Ludwig Minkus's lively, if largely unmemorable, score.  - BOSTON GLOBE

Love powers Ballet's 'Don Quixote' 

By Karen Campbell, Globe Correspondent  |  October 20, 2006

Boston Ballet opened its 43d season last night with the production that put the company on the international map nearly a quarter century ago, Rudolf Nureyev's version of ``Don Quixote." This current incarnation shows the ballet has aged well. Nureyev originally choreographed it in 1966, based on the famed Petipa version, and set it on Boston Ballet in 1982, casting himself in the starring role of Basilio. Admittedly, it's a bit fluffy and not particularly cohesive, but it may well be the best of the ``Don Quixotes" out there. It's sweet, fun and jam-packed with dancing.

Nureyev eschews the dark, poignant undercurrents of the knight-errant's misadventures to focus more on the story of two lovers, Basilio and Kitri, given committed performances last night by Yury Yanowsky and the exquisite Lorna Feijoo. Their determination to be together despite her father's attempts to marry her off fuel the ballet's action far more than the old man's tilting at windmills.

It's a busy production, full of crowd scenes enlivened by big ensemble pieces and spirited character dances. The first and third acts have a pseudo-Spanish flair, with flourishing fans, swirling capes, castanets, and nontraditional footwork that tilts flexed feet side to side. The technical facility of the corps looks good -- one hopes the occasional ensemble sloppiness will clear up after opening night.

The ballet offers an excellent showcase for solos and small groups. Melissa Hough was outstanding as a street dancer. A sultry siren enchanting the matadors in the town square, she danced with flair and impeccable precision through various configurations of swords sticking out of the stage.

However, the two lovers have the most impressive and substantive choreography. Feijoo and Yanowsky, who danced the same roles in Boston Ballet's 2003 revival, are at their most convincing in the scenes of playful flirtation and affectionate sparring. Basilio's fake death has some terrific comic touches. But the real workout comes in the famous grand pas de deux, often performed as a stand-alone piece, and in this they were dynamite. Yanowsky, who looked a little stiff at the ballet's start, loosened up and displayed all the verve and pizzazz the character begged for, with crisp footwork and buoyant leaps. He nailed the fiendish alternating mid-air turns that Nureyev choreographed for himself.

With her charismatic charm, technical clarity, and expressive arms, Feijoo embodied Kitri with sparkle and flash, dancing with rhythmic verve and linear precision. Her legs sliced through the notorious fouette combination like a machete. Pavel Gurevich was a more virile, elegant Don Quixote than is usually portrayed, Raul Salamanca was a nimble Sancho Panza, and Viktor Plotnikov brought convincing comic physicality to the role of Lorenzo.

Nicholas Georgiadis' s sets tended toward flat and drab, but the costumes were vibrantly colorful. The orchestra, under Jonathan McPhee, gave a commanding performance of Ludwig Minkus's lively, if largely unmemorable, score. - BOSTON GLOBE

We dined at Matt Murphy Pub and can't wait to go back again for great pork chops, steak and fish & chips.

This long-standing friendship that now spans two generations has worked because of mutual dedication to the virtue of Friendship, Excellence and exemplary performance in Life.   We live each in different locations and have managed to make it work.   That our children can be good friends as we were in younger days is a blessing.   We are lucky to lead extraordinary lives. -  太太

 


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