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Just to be nominated

Bill Condon ’76CC, who adapted the Broadway musical Chicago in 2002 for the big screen, directed Dreamgirls, which nabbed the Golden Globe for Best Motion Picture Musical or Comedy. The Departed beat it — as well as Little Miss Sunshine, produced in part by Albert Berger ’83SOA — for the Oscar.


Business school dean R. Glenn Hubbard cochaired the independent, bipartisan Committee on Capital Markets Regulation, which issued a report late last year finding that corporate-governance standards mandated by the federal Sarbanes-Oxley

law are overly burdensome and have hurt the competitiveness of U.S. markets. The Treasury Department hasn’t announced how it will act on the report’s recommendations.

Scoring high

Tom Kitt ’96CC composed the score for the musical version of High Fidelity, which premiered in 2006 on Broadway. After reading Nick Hornby’s 1995 book High Fidelity about a heartbroken music snob, the songwriter said, the “ideas just leap off the page.”… The First Emperor, composed by Tan Dun ’93SOA, had its world premiere in December at the Metropolitan Opera. Tan’s distinctive fusion of Chinese folk music with avant-garde composition gained popular appeal thanks to his Oscar-winning score for Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon.


Black Entertainment Television recently hired Keith Brown ’91JRN to reinvigorate its news programming, which has been overrun by rap music videos since Viacom’s takeover of the company in 2001. “We have to find a way to deal with the contemporary issues our community is confronted with,” Brown tells Asbury Park Press. . . . After recovering from a severe illness, founder and cochairman Robert K. Shaye ’64LAW is back at New Line Cinema. In 2006, the studio suffered a slew of box-office washouts after the wild success of the Lord of the Rings trilogy (2001–2003). Despite a pending lawsuit from Rings director Peter Jackson over the movies’ profits, Shaye is pressing ahead with the series’s prelude, The Hobbit, intended for release in 2009.

Globe Trotter

National Basketball Association commissioner and Columbia trustee chair emeritus David Stern ’66LAW has earned admiration for broadcasting the league overseas to 215 countries and territories in 41 languages. About ten percent of the league’s $3 billion in total revenue now comes from foreign TV contracts, merchandising, and licensing.

Careering at Nueva York Times

As participants in the New York Times Student Journalism Institute’s inaugural program for Hispanic students, Matt Mireles ’08GS and Victor Morales ’07GS had the opportunity to report and edit stories at the newspaper’s Miami bureau. . . . The Cuban government unveiled a marble plaque commemorating the infamous 1957 interview that the late New York Times reporter Herbert Matthews ’22CC conducted with Fidel Castro, which publicized the leader’s charisma and exaggerated the size of his rebel force.

Constructive criticism

Barry Bergdoll, chair of the art history department, is now the Museum of Modern Art’s chief curator of architecture and design. An expert on German architecture, Bergdoll commented in New York magazine on the current rethinking of Robert Moses ’14GSAS, ’52HON and his mark on the Big Apple: “I suppose, as perverse as it might seem, that nostalgia for Moses’s scale of intervention is inevitable. How is it possible that there is still no new Penn Station and that Ground Zero is a veritable tragicomedy?”

Spatial relations

Gregory H. Johnson ’85SEAS, a colonel in the U.S. Air Force, will serve as pilot to the STS-123 mission of the space shuttle Endeavor. Scheduled for December 2007, the flight will deliver a new Canadian Dextre robotics system to the International Space Station and a component of the Japanese experiment Module Kibo. . . . In December, Joshua Lederberg ’44CC, ’45PS, Nobel-winning microbiologist, received the Medal of Freedom, the United States’ highest civilian honor, for his work on NASA’s early biology programs. Lederberg was one of the first scientists to express concern that spacecrafts may transport microbes and contaminate the moon or other landing site.

Due praise

Mary Gordon, professor of English at Barnard, won the Story Prize, the largest cash prize for American short fiction, for her recent collection entitled The Stories of Mary Gordon, which includes new, previously uncollected, and published stories that span 30 years of writing. . . . Composer and associate music professor Sebastian Currier’sStatic has become the first chamber work to win the Grawemeyer Award for Music Composition, awarded by the University of Louisville. The six-movement work premiered in 2005 at Columbia’s Miller Theatre.