Even nations that can't seem to meet at the negotiating table have often found common ground on the stage, sending musicians out in the global field as cultural ambassadors. Most notably, the U.S. dispatched jazz men like Louis Armstrong, Dizzy Gillespie and Benny Goodman to spread good vibes with their horns at the height of the Cold War. The documentary Glenn Gould, The Russian Journey captures a similar trip the Canadian pianist made in 1957 to the Soviet Union, using clips from his lectures and performances in Leningrad and Moscow. It also addresses the lasting influence on Russian musicians by the eccentric and unorthodox piano man, who boldly performed works by composers who had been suppressed in the country, in addition to his slate of Bach and Beethoven.
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Now, if we could only dispatch Britney to Iran, perhaps Ahmadinejad wouldn't act so tight-assed. (We're kidding, we're just kidding. Please don't write us any angry letters. They clog up the mail room something awful.) 7:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday. The Russian Cultural Center Our Texas, 2337 Bissonnet. For information, call 713-395-3301 or visit www.ourtexas.org. $8 suggested contribution.
Fri., Oct. 17, 7:30 p.m.; Sat., Oct. 18, 7:30 p.m., 2008