15-Year-Old Ping-Pong Prodigy Wins USA Table Tennis National Championship

15-Year-Old Ping-Pong Prodigy Wins USA Table Tennis National Championship

At the tender age of 15-years-old, Michal Landers has become the youngest player ever to win the Men’s USA Table Tennis National Singles Championship.  He overcame a three-games-to-one deficit in the best-of-seven final match on Dec. 19th in Las Vegas.

You can read more about Michael Landers in The New York Times here.

Final Match for the Men’s USA Table Tennis National Championship

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The Jazz Loft: Photos of a Lost New York

The Jazz Loft: Photos of a Lost New York

W. Eugene Smith was one of mid-century America’s greatest photojournalists; his work for Life Magazine during and after World War II made him rich and famous.  In 1957, Smith, 38, moved into a fourth-floor loft at 821 Sixth Avenue, near West 28th Street, in the heart of what was then Manhattan’s commercial flower market.  Over the next eight years, he shot over 1,000 rolls of film, many of them from his window, capturing a world in one block.

Many of those photographs can be found in Sam Stephenson’s recently published The Jazz Loft Project, which is equally devoted to Smith’s other passion, jazz.  As it happened, his next-door neighbor was composer-arranger Hall Overton, and Smith was letting him use his loft as a rehearsal space for some of the era’s great jazz musicians. Not only did Smith photograph the musicians, he wired the whole building for sound, hooked up several tape recorders, and let the spools spin till they ran out, recording everything from jam sessions to conversations in the hallway.

The first of the two videos below presents a number of photographs taken in and from the loft, accompanied by actual sounds captured by Smith’s tape recorders in the building.

The Jazz Loft: Photos of a Lost New York

The Jazz Loft Project: An Interview with Sam Stephenson

Slide Show: The Jazz Loft/Photos of a Lost New York

(Please Click Image to View Slide Show)

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Danny MacAskill: The Stuntmeister’s Awesome, Death Defying Bicycle Tricks!

Danny MacAskill: The Stuntmeister’s Awesome, Death Defying Bicycle Tricks!

Filmed in and around Edinburgh, this video of stunt bike rider Danny MacAskill features probably the best collection of street riding you’ve ever seen.  23-year old Danny MacAskill has been tearing up the streets of Edinburgh and wowing people across the globe with his bike stunts for a few years now.  However, this stunt video has taken the world by storm and received more hits than any cycling video ever.  Watching this video, your spirit will soar, and life in that moment becomes movement, joy and the triumph of the indominitable spirit.

Danny MacAskill: The Stuntmeister’s Awesome, Death Defying Bicycle Tricks!

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Song For A Blue Guitar: Sad Reminders of Lost Love

Song For A Blue Guitar: Sad Reminders of Lost Love

Song For A Blue Guitar is performed by singer and guitarist Mark Kozelek, with video footage provided by photographer Phil Bebbington.  The music is one of Kozelek’s iconic masterpieces, replete with escalating feelings of desolation, elusive promises and lost loves.  Kozelek’s artistry is known for his reflectively haunting vocals that greet listeners with interlocking images of lost childhood and ruminations underpinned by lucid pictures of a past that recaptures old relationships, formative places and tumultuous experiences.

Song For A Blue Guitar: Sad Reminders of Lost Love

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We Have Decided Not to Die: Spiritual Rituals of Reversible Destiny

We Have Decided Not to Die: Spiritual Rituals of Reversible Destiny

We Have Decided Not to Die is an award-winning, very unusual and deeply intriguing eight-minute short film by the Australian filmmaker Daniel Askill.  A Triptych.  Three Rituals. Three Figures. Three modern-day journeys of transcendence.  From the post-modern quirk school of filmmaking, this piece transforms the power of ritual actions into an emotional allegory that creates a world beyond evolution, creationism and intelligent design.  From a mental state where logic drops away, the film embarks upon a visually lyrical odyssey along a poetically surreal road to reversible destiny, where death is no longer inevitable.

We Have Decided Not to Die: Spiritual Rituals of Reversible Destiny

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The Chamber Choir of Namur: Handel’s Messiah Symphony

The Chamber Choir of Namur: Handel’s Messiah Symphony

Belgium’s Chamber Choir of Namur was founded in 1987.  Right from the beginning of its career, the orchestra has performed the major works in the choral repertoire of Georg Frideric Handel, J.S. Bach and Mozart, as well as contemporary works.  The ensemble has appeared at well-known festivals, among them the Abbey of Escaldieu (Pyrénées), the Versailles Festival of Baroque Music, the Festival d’été in Paris, the Arles Festival of Sacred Music, the Walloon and Flanders festivals, the Ars Musica Festival in Brussels, the Concerts Sinfonico-corals of Lerida and the Ambronay Festival.

The Chamber Choir: Handel’s Messiah Symphony

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Little Alma: An Unexpectedly Ghoulish Holiday Film!

Little Alma: An Unexpectedly Ghoulish Holiday Film!

Alma is an award winning 5-minute short animation that’s a delightful, but very creepy little film.  In this wintry Christmas-like film, the little girl Alma skips her merry way through the snow-covered streets of a small, quaint village.  Attracted to a strange life-like doll in an antique doll shop window, Anna finds herself drawn into the shop like a moth to a flame.  Now, I won’t tell you what actually happens inside of that dark and scary store, but let’s just say that things don’t work out too well for the shop’s cute little dolls!

Little Alma: An Unexpectedly Ghoulish Holiday Film!

(Most Fun to Watch in Full-Screen Mode)

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