I stumbled upon a surprising interview of Arnold Schwarzenegger on 90 Minutes Live in the CBC digital archives today. In the interview, host Peter Gzowski asks a few questions which elicit very unexpected responses from the soon-to-be superstar. Granted, the Schwarzenegger in the video (embedded below) was one which I had never known; one which hadn't yet become the Hollywood beacon of ultra-masculinity; whose persona hadn't yet been fixed by the numerous blockbuster feature films. But what is really worth noting is the drastic difference in atmosphere on the show in comparison with a talk show today.
The interview was aired in 1978, a time when Arnold was known principally for his body building success. The documentary, Pumping Iron, had been released the previous year which greatly boosted Schwarzenegger's popularity and his appearance on 90 Minutes Live had a clear tie-in with the publication of Arnold: The Education of a Bodybuilder, his autobiography. Gzowski had a few more or less hard-hitting questions for Schwarzenegger which he tackled well enough. Sadly, near the end of the interview the question on Homosexuality results in crack which leads to the type of discussion you'd hear on Conan today.
The most telling moment for me was the question of ego (beginning at 9:00). Schwarzenegger says that without a healthy ego he wouldn't have been able to earn the achievements he had. "I think ego is the thing that makes us do certain things, and if we destroy the ego we end up as vegetables, you know, sitting in India somewhere in the Mountains praying," Schwarzenegger said leading to a few moans from the audience. "Alot of people think that's pretty good," Gzowski replies. "That's right," says Schwarzenegger, "I've been brought up in a Western philosophy... going after a goal, achieving [it], money, the drive, and that's what I like..." Not the most well-articulated statement, I concede, but would you ever hear a line like that on that sort of television today?
This is, no doubt, the best interview I've ever seen with The Terminator. The pacing, the quality of the questions despite the nature of the subject, and their answers speaks to the preparation of both Gzowski and Schwarzenegger, as well as the dual role the program provided of informing its audience and entertaining it. If this is the quality we can get from a body builder on a talk show, why have we accepted the new model?
Friday, February 7, 2014
A few days ago I read a post on the CBC Music blog. The facebook post which I've embedded above advertised an interview with Yannick Nézet-Séguin on how classical music needs to change. In actuality it was a gallery with a few bullet-points. Frankly, it felt a bit cheap. The more I look at the website, the more I see CBC Music's classical section catering to a mythical online community that is content with little substance and celebrity.
Friday, January 31, 2014
In two weeks time Our Very Own will be back at The Church of St. Bartholomew in Ottawa to perform music from Restoration-era England and France. It's been a while since I've performed under the OVO label but I'm happy nonetheless. Not that long ago I was wondering if it were to happen again.
Thursday, December 12, 2013
|The view from Arlanda|
From windy Copenhagen we trekked to Stockholm. Only a few hundred kilometres to the north, the Swedish capital was noticeably colder. What surprised me about the city was the landskape in the surrounding area. Just travelling between Arlanda, the airport, and the hotel in the centre of the old town it was clear to me that the ecology and geology were relatively similar to that of the Ottawa valley. In fact, if it weren't for the signs on the highway being printed in Swedish, one could easily make the mistake of thinking they were travelling from downtown Ottawa to Kanata, the city's western suburb.
Within this familiar context, it was telling how I reacted to the sub-zero temperature. Ottawa's average winter temperature is -10 degrees Celsius and our day in Stockholm was spent in -12. Not only was I wearing two sweaters under my coat, but it didn't seem like my mittens and hat were doing enough. If this were two years ago, I wouldn'tve flinched going out in this weather. Now, however, it's a different story.
I write this as we travel to Manchester, where we will perform our penultimate concert as Eubo 2013 for BBC radio 3's Early Music Show tomorrow. The concert will be broadcast on January 19, 2014.
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