Alec Baldwin

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Sunday, May 02, 2004

Award-winning actor and music lover Alec Baldwin has worked in nearly every venue as a professional actor since beginning his career in daytime television. From his ten appearances as host on "Saturday Night Live" to his out-spoken support of various causes related to public policy, he's displayed an unbridled passion. He reveals his passionate interest in classical music with host Gilbert Kaplan.

Hector Berlioz Symphonie fantastique, Op. 14 . "March to the Scaffold". Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra. Paavo Järvi. Telarc 80578.

Gustav Mahler Symphony No. 6 . Excerpt from Movement 1. London Philharmonic Orchestra. Klaus Tennstedt. EMI Classics 5 72941 2.

Gustav Mahler Symphony No. 4 . Excerpt from Movement 4. The Cleveland Orchestra. George Szell. Judith Raskin, Soprano. Sony Classical 46535.

C.Coleman/C.Leigh "Firefly". Tony Bennett At Carnegie Hall [Live] June 9, 1962. Columbia C2K 64609.

Frédéric Chopin Impromptu for Piano No. 4, Op. 66 "Fantaisie-Impromptu" . Murray Perahia, Piano. CBS Masterworks 42448.

Gustav Mahler Symphony No. 9 . Excerpts from Movements 3 & 4. Chicago Symphony Orchestra. Sir Georg Solti. London 430 804-2.

Aaron Copland Rodeo . "Hoe-Down". St. Louis Symphony Orchestra. Leonard Slatkin. EMI Classics 73653.

Kaplan Award-winning actor and music lover, Alec Baldwin on today's edition of "Mad About Music."

[Theme Music]

From his earliest roles in daytime television, to acclaimed portrayals in movies and on the stage, certainly in voicing his views about political matters, even in the ten times he's hosted "Saturday Night Live", there is always a display of unbridled passion. Today we explore a largely unknown focus of that passion, a deep love of music. Alec Baldwin, welcome to "Mad About Music.”

Baldwin Thank you for having me.

Kaplan Now, I think it's fair to say that every aspect of your career, your political activities, your personal life, is covered, uncovered, recovered, in the media, yet I have never encountered a single reference to your passionate interest in music.

Baldwin Sometimes I feel like what I do for a living is the result of the fact that I can't sing or play music. I mean, deep down inside I wish I were Michael Feinstein, or Eric Clapton or someone—music I love, but I never was raised with any musical training. You know, my real passion musically now is probably confined or limited to classical music.

Kaplan But how is it that nobody knows about this?

Baldwin I don't know where it's applicable in anything I've done lately. I know that when we're, you know, one thing that when I work with people in films, where that passion rears its head, is when I'm doing a film and I'm constantly suggesting to them source music for the score for the film. I'm handing them tapes and saying—you know, this music would go really well with this scene and so forth. And when I've produced and directed films myself, I've had a good time trying to lay in source music for the film.

Kaplan But as a child, did you have any contact with music? Did you study an instrument?

Baldwin Well, in school, in the public school on Long Island when I grew up in the 60s, of course they had you play in the sinfoniette. And then I played the trumpet briefly, until the trumpet I was renting from some music house, they used to have those all over Long Island for the public school music classes, you could rent instruments. The trumpet I was renting and playing broke, and my father said to me, thus ends your musical career. My musical career ended right then and there.

Kaplan What a pity. So how did you become hooked on classical music? Was there a defining moment for you?

Baldwin I was doing a television show, this soap opera, oddly enough, and I guess some of the more musically literate people who were producing the show were playing this classical score on the radio in my home as I was about to be murdered off the show. And they were playing this music, and I turned to the casting director, Roger Sturtevant, who was a very well educated guy, and I said, "What is this music, this very harrowing music?" And he kind of looked at me scornfully—he couldn't believe I didn't know what it was—and he said, "Well, that's," he said, "Come, come, I mean, that's Berlioz's Symphonie fantastique , the "March to the Scaffold". And I said, "God", and I was actually frustrated that I didn't know that. You know, I had no real education in classical music and I began then. And then it ramped up quite a bit when I moved to Los Angeles and I was driving in a car all the time and had the radio on—I began this exploration of that kind of music.

[Music]

Kaplan "March to the Scaffold" from Berlioz's Symphonie fantastique , the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra led by Paavo Järvi, the first selection of my guest on today's edition of "Mad About Music", award-winning actor Alec Baldwin. Now, you were talking about catching classical music through Symphonie fantastique and then, in Los Angeles, it began to accelerate. How did that happen?

Baldwin When I moved to Los Angeles, suddenly you're in a car and you're driving everywhere, as opposed to New York, where somebody else is always doing the driving. And that was at a time, I guess in the early 80s, when just about everything that was on popular radio was unappealing to me. I didn't really care about rap, and just all the music that was playing then had lost its luster for me. So I was putting on classical stations in L.A. and just got pulled in on this incredible level where I was pulling my car up to auditions and the classical piece had not finished, so I'd sit in the car and wait for the piece to finish and then write down the name of the composer, and the disc label, and the disc number and so forth, and the conductor, and the symphony, and I'd write all the pertinent details down. Then my agent was yelling at me, saying I was late for my auditions, so I put the program director of the radio station, his number, on speed dial on my car phone, back when we all had these car phones. And I would call them when I got out of the audition. I'd say, "Now what was that piece, that symphonic piece you had that was playing between 11:00 and 11:30?" And they would tell me the name, and I was writing these copious notes about things, and I started collecting classical discs and recordings.

Kaplan So your first recordings would come from hearing pieces on the radio and responding...

Baldwin On the radio, I was, you know, just so drawn to symphonic music in particular. I was not a big opera fan. There were some operas I've enjoyed. Opera is such theater; you need to see opera live really to appreciate it, I think, more. But recorded classical music, I started collecting it pretty rabidly.

Kaplan You know, in looking over your selections today, I sometimes think there's a connection between the music my guests pick, and their personality. For example, we had on the show the National Security Adviser, Condoleezza Rice, who was talking about Brahms' music and she said, someone characterized it as being "passionate without being sentimental". And I thought that was a very good description of her, actually. And so we discussed that.

Now, in your case, your director in the movie "The Cooler", the performance for which you were nominated for an Academy Award—congratulations—said you're a person with a real edge, a charismatic, but brooding, personality. Now, I think that's a pretty good description of the composer you've selected most today, Gustav Mahler. What is it about Mahler's music that speaks to you so personally?

Baldwin I like pieces that are very something, if it's going to be, vivacissimo, and it's going to be very upbeat, and so forth. I like Copland, and I like things that are very strong in a certain direction, and in terms if you are looking for something that's a little more brooding, and a little more sonorous, I can't think of anybody that affects me more than Mahler. And the Mahler pieces that I was first pulled toward were the Ninth, with Solti directing the Chicago, and the recording of Solti with the Chicago of the Ninth is one of my favorite pieces and it was just so strong. If I'm not mistaken, that was the piece in which, I don't know how much he was influenced by this; but in the liner notes of that disc, I have that they talked how he was told he was going to die, and he wrote this piece, knowing he was going to die. And did indeed die, after that piece was, soon after that was finished. He had not completed the Tenth .

Kaplan He never completed the Tenth , and he never heard the Ninth . Now, today, I see you want to start—your first selection, though, is the Sixth , and the Sixth , of course, is characterized by those driving marches, and I gather those appeal to you?

Baldwin Well, there's a film that I saw that's a kind of a cult film, called "The Honeymoon Killers", and oddly enough the stars of it are Tony Lo Bianco, the film actor, and a woman named Shirley Stoler, who was an opera singer herself in her early career. And went on to have kind of a kitschy movie career. She plays a murderess in this movie. And in this very low budget, almost kind of silly movie, the way it is, but it's a wonderful movie, she and Lo Bianco play true-life characters who murder these women for their money. They play the Mahler Sixth , this piece from the Mahler Sixth—that was the first time I heard it, in the score of the film. And so I wound up calling again, in this way that I have to do this detective work: I had to find the distributor of the movie, to put me in touch with the producer of the movie, who was long since out of the business, to find out for me what was that piece? So I went out then and I bought that disc.

[Music]

Kaplan An excerpt from the opening movement of Mahler's Sixth Symphony , performed by the London Philharmonic Orchestra with conductor Klaus Tennstedt.

A selection of my guest on "Mad About Music" today, award-winning actor Alec Baldwin. You can learn more about Alec Baldwin, or listen to any of our prior shows by logging onto WNYC.org, and then just click on "Mad About Music". When we return, we'll hear more of Alec Baldwin's choices, more Mahler, as well as his "Wildcard."

[Station Break]

Kaplan This is Gilbert Kaplan and my guest on "Mad About Music" today, actor Alec Baldwin. Let's talk about the role of music in your life today. How often do you find time to attend concerts?

Baldwin Well, I find that when I go out and want to do something cultural that way, I wind up going to the theater more than anything else. Oddly enough, I wind up going to see the Los Angeles Philharmonic more than I do in New York, because in New York I go to the theatre. When I'm in L.A., I don't go to the theater as much.

Kaplan Are you a fan of the new Disney Hall?

Baldwin Oh, it's incredible. I think they did a fabulous job, it's beautiful, and it's said the sound is exquisite. And I like Salonen; I like what he's done with the Los Angeles over the past several years.

Kaplan Now, in a typical month, how many new CDs might enter your collection?

Baldwin I would say probably just a couple, because I collected them so ferociously early on. I'll meet someone, for example, who will introduce me to some piece, like Górecki was a composer that I wasn't that familiar with his work, and worked with a director on a film, and then I'll go on some Górecki tear for a while. Or I find that I'm in the mood for something, to explore someone again that I haven't listened to all of their catalogue of their work, Dvorak, or so forth, and I'll go back. Or there will be a release of someone's work like Bernstein—the Bernstein collection that came out on CBS—and I want to go and give that a listen, and I'll buy a handful of those. It goes in spurts like that.

Kaplan Now what about your listening equipment? Are you an audiophile? Do you have fancy speakers and high-powered equipment?

Baldwin I'm going to get some new stuff. At my home, on Long Island where I live, I have a big elaborate system there for audio-visual; and in my apartment, I don't. I mean, I have a good system—you know, as is the case, you wind up getting involved in that whole neurosis about, do I have the latest and the greatest equipment?

Kaplan What about the iPod? Has that entered your life?

Baldwin No, I'm not an iPod person. No, because I don't like putting those little prongs in my ears. I like headphones and I like quality sound speakers, I don't—those little pieces that they put in for iPod don't really do it for me.

Kaplan Let's talk a little bit about music as it connects with people. Now, gossip columns are always speculating about your love life, but I have a more serious question in that category.

Baldwin Thank you.

Kaplan How important to you is it that someone shares your love of music?

Baldwin Well, I find that as long as they have a passion for some kind of music, I find—I talked to someone once who I worked with, an actor, and he said something that was so arresting to me because I felt the same way. He said, sometimes I don't listen to music at all for weeks and months, he said because I don't have time, my head is just so filled with my thoughts and some project he's working on or whatever, he said, and then one day I turn around, and my life is filled with music. I'm making time for music. I'm sitting and I'm allowing that to wash over me and affect me in the way that it does.

And I find that if I'm with people in my life who are my friends on whatever level, who I'm intimate with on whatever level, as long as they have some passion for some kind of music. I don't care if it's big band music or hip-hop music, as long as it's something. But those people for whom music is just not even a factor, I think I would find that odd. That's a good question.

Kaplan Now you have a seven-year-old daughter. Have you introduced her to classical music?

Baldwin I've tried. I've tried. My daughter is—she writhes a bit when we're in the car and I'm playing my music. And she does excoriate me about what the music I listen to tells the world about me as a person. You know, that I'm an old man now, and listen to this kind of music. But I think she's going to come around.

Kaplan Let's hope so because "children" is really a very good transition to your next selection. It's again Mahler, and this time, his Fourth Symphony . Because here I see you've chosen his last movement, which is a song, a song Mahler said depicts a child's view of heaven. How did you discover this music?

Baldwin This is actually a piece that I heard on the radio, and this is one of those moments where I was driving in a car and it was on NYC. And this piece was playing, and this is also—it plays into this idea of the first time you hear a piece, at least in my case, I become obsessed with that recording. So that subsequent recordings I've gotten of other conductors conducting other symphonies, and other featured soloists singing this piece—Judith Raskin sings with Szell and the Cleveland on this—they never really were as satisfying to me as the first time. I would say that Szell and Raskin singing this piece is probably my favorite piece of classical music.

[Music]

Kaplan The concluding moments of Mahler's Fourth Symphony , the song "Das himmlische Leben" ("The Heavenly Life"), a child's view of heaven. The Cleveland Orchestra led by George Szell, with soprano Judith Raskin, a selection of my guest on "Mad About Music" today, the actor Alec Baldwin. Now one of the recurring themes in Mahler's music is how important it is to maintain our childlike wonderment about life. Does this philosophy resonate with you?

Baldwin Well, I think it's hard not to have some of that come into play when you have a child. Once I had my daughter, I found that—a friend of mine once put it best: he said, when you have a child, sometimes in a busy life, it's the only thing that can give you energy. You know, when you see the world alongside your child.

Kaplan Now in your search for discoveries in music, do you connect with contemporary classical music at all, which is often characterized by atonal sounds and dissonance?

Baldwin No.

Kaplan You don't.

Baldwin No, I don't.

Kaplan Have you tried?

Baldwin I have. I went to some pieces that were done. I'll never forget, I guess it was—was it Boulez who was conducting the L.A.? Boulez, I think, was guest conducting. He played a lot of contemporary in this one program. He played a contemporary piece, an atonal piece. I don't hate it, I don't want to denigrate it, but I don't really care for it.

Kaplan Now, are there any mainstream composers you don't connect to?

Baldwin Well, it's funny, and this is going to sound blasphemous in a way, I would imagine some people are going to cringe, but I think the person who I listen to the least is Mozart. For some reason, I just don't respond as much to Mozart's music. Again, I don't hate it, but I would much rather have a dark, brooding piece from Mahler or Beethoven than the gaiety of some of Mozart's music and the kind of, the vanities of some of Mozart's music. It's clever to me, it's well laid out. But I find I play Mozart the least of anyone.

Kaplan Now earlier, you mentioned that opera doesn't have a particular appeal to you, which, in a way, is surprising. Because after all, you are a person who said you prefer to be on the stage than in movies. Isn't opera really acting with singing?

Baldwin Well, I mean, the operas that I've seen, which are modest—I've only seen a handful of operas—I responded to them. I mean, to me opera will be better for me once I understand that period of history better. Oddly enough, when I was very young I went and saw the one opera that made the greatest impression on me, which was Fanciulla del West . And I didn't need to know much history there because it was the American West. It was a bunch of cowboys sitting around a fire singing at one point, and so that was easy for me to comprehend. But I was a young viewer and a young member of the audience, so I think that for me that's the next thing for me. Right now, symphonic music and concert going and ballet, I love, because I have a boundless appreciation for people that have that kind of physical discipline. But I think the next thing for me will probably be more of an appreciation of live opera.

Kaplan All right. Well, we now come to that part of our show which, as our listeners know, we call the "Wildcard", where our guests have a chance to pick music from outside the classical or opera genre. It can be anything, rock, jazz; we've had wonderful selections here. So what "Wildcard" did you bring us today?

Baldwin Well, I have a selection from, I think the album is "Tony Bennett Live At Carnegie Hall," which was done I think, in 1964, with Ralph Sharon, who was his conductor and music director. And, you know, Bennett is someone to me who not only by virtue of the fact that he's outlived a lot of his contemporaries, and that's an important element too, is that he had the chance to reinvent himself in the last ten or fifteen years and have a whole other career, and sang every kind of music that was right for his canon. Him doing the "MTV Unplugged" album, which I think is just absolutely a priceless album, which he sang with K.D. Lang. They sang "Moonglow" together which is a beautiful cut. And the album that he did with Elvis Costello, they did the Bacharach music together, which is absolutely beautiful. It's interesting to me that a guy who is that great a musical talent, whose pipes are still in pretty good shape, and who had the will and the desire to press on for a whole other decade of making beautiful albums. I think that Bennett is probably one of my three favorite male vocalists of all time. And this piece which is entitled "Firefly" is one of my favorite cuts off that album.

[Music]

Kaplan Tony Bennett singing "Firefly" from a live performance at Carnegie Hall. The "Wildcard" selection of my guest on "Mad About Music" today, award-winning actor Alec Baldwin. Now, unlike many of my guests, you have views not only about music, but about specific performers. So we've heard already that you like Georg Solti. Who are some of your other favorite conductors?

Baldwin I like a lot of the work that Dutoit did with the Montreal that Slatkin did with the St. Louis. I collect a lot of what Ormandy did with the Philadelphia, once upon a time, a bit back. Bernstein with the New York. Solti and Szell, again, I like very much. And Salonen, I like Salonen's recordings with the Los Angeles quite a bit. I'm a big fan of Salonen.

Kaplan What about pianists? And is piano music important to you? I see you have one on your list.

Baldwin I chose this because I find that there's some music that I can listen to—I don't know any other way to put it—to relax me. But not necessarily put me to sleep. You know, there's music I want to listen to in the car, but I don't want to go to sleep while I'm driving. And then there's music I want to relax me on the deepest level, you know, and piano music always seems to do that trick for me. Piano music to me is much more of a meditative thing than anything. And I think the Perahia, who is the pianist on this Chopin "Fantaisie-Impromptu", I believe that we have, is one. And Gould, I collect a lot of Gould. I mean, there are so many pianists that I really, really like. But this is one of my favorites, Perahia performing this Chopin.

[Music]

Kaplan Chopin's "Fantaisie-Impromptu", played by pianist Murray Perahia, a selection of my guest on "Mad About Music" today, actor Alec Baldwin. When we return, we'll hear his final selections, one more Mahler, and then a leap into American music.

[Station break]

Kaplan This is Gilbert Kaplan with my guest, actor Alec Baldwin. As we return to your interest in Mahler, we come to probably his most profound symphony, the Ninth . You know he never heard it. He died before it could ever be played. Bruno Walter did the premiere, but it is very profound music, and continuing with my attempt to connect your musical selections with your personality, this symphony combines in an almost surreal way, two opposing personalities. The third movement, which Mahler called the "Rondo-burlesque", is really a demonic whirlwind charging ahead, almost out of control. Then, it turns into perhaps the most reflective, probing, sensuous music Mahler ever composed. Do you see anything of yourself in that description?

Baldwin You missed your calling! You should be a forensic psychiatrist with the police department. Well, I'm going to cop out here and say, these analyses of yours might apply maybe more to the characters I play than to me myself. I mean, I might have an appreciation of....

Kaplan You're a mild-mannered reporter of The Daily Planet .

Baldwin ... of a quaint metropolitan newspaper, who fights a never-ending battle for truth, justice and the American way.

Kaplan Well, tell me about your feelings about this Ninth .

Baldwin Well, the Ninth was probably, I would say, like many people, when you first hear this piece, it's just so searing, and so powerful. This was the first Mahler piece I think I heard when I was in Los Angeles, during that time I was listening to classical music on the radio incessantly, and it just had this incredible effect on me. And it's one of the few symphonies, actually, where the whole piece, I could sit and listen to the whole piece in one run. Sometimes I'll take some certain symphonies and listen to movements, I don't really feel the need to listen to the whole piece in one meal. And this is one where you just almost have to play this whole thing, and Solti and the Chicago was the first again, back to that idea of the first, inaugural listening for me has always made the biggest impression.

Kaplan Well, I wish we could play it end to end, but of course in this show, it would take the whole show, so let's hear then that clash of personalities I talked about before as that whirlwind "Rondo-burlesque" dissolves into the dreamy opening of the finale.

[Music]

Kaplan An excerpt from Mahler's Ninth Symphony , the conclusion of the riveting "Rondo-burlesque" followed by the opening of the lush finale. Sir Georg Solti leads the Chicago Symphony Orchestra. A selection of my guest on "Mad About Music" today, actor Alec Baldwin, whose unbridled passion for music seems to have been a well-kept secret until today. Now, how much of an aberration are you in Hollywood? Do you find any fellow actors and actresses who are classical music lovers?

Baldwin I think there are. You know, many, many people I find in California, they vacillate between, or alternate rather, between political talk radio, books on tape and classical music or jazz. They have, those are their three passions, books on tape being a big one now for people who are stuck in their cars on the freeways out there for some interminable amount of time. But, yes, I have a lot of friends of mine who are big fans of classical music.

Kaplan Can you mention a few well-known actors who you might go to a concert with, or you might see at a concert?

Baldwin I would be hard-pressed to think about that, about naming somebody that I saw at a concert. You know, most of the people that I know, we would discuss the music privately. I'm at a movie with Tony Hopkins, and he's a great music lover, an incredible music lover, but I can't say that I've ever seen Tony at the symphony.

Kaplan Now, I understand before acting, you were contemplating being a lawyer. And in light of the power that music exerts in your life, do you ever wish you could have been a singer? You sort of alluded to that before a bit.

Baldwin Well, sometimes I do think that people in my profession, you know, acting, is something that they do because a greater artistic yearning they had, eluded them. If I could sing—what I wouldn't give to have that ability! I would just do that for a living, and sing all the time, if I could sing.

Kaplan Well, then, it's a real pity, because I read recently in the Herald-Tribune about your voice. The Tribune said, that you have a "rolling, mellifluous baritone that, like your Roger Gallett cologne, has the whiff of masculine authority"– which to me sounds like you'd be a perfect Don Giovanni!

Baldwin Well, maybe one day, maybe my next life!

Kaplan Well, after tormenting you to describe your personality within terms of your musical selections, let's turn to your final choice, for which there is no psychological overtone at all, just buoyant dance music from Aaron Copland.

Baldwin Copland's Rodeo is a favorite of mine, when I want to listen to something that's more spirited and upbeat. In my collection, I have quite a bit of Slatkin conducting the St. Louis, and I think that Slatkin really has recorded probably the best Copland. I collect Slatkin's recordings of Copland because I think that he just served up Copland better than anybody.

[Music]

Kaplan "Hoe-Down" from Aaron Copland's Rodeo , the St. Louis Symphony Orchestra with conductor Leonard Slatkin, the final selection of my guest on "Mad About Music", the actor Alec Baldwin. Well, it's been fascinating to explore the pivotal role music plays in your life, a passion that has largely been hidden from public view. Alec Baldwin, thank you for appearing. This is Gilbert Kaplan, for today's edition of "Mad About Music.”

[Credits]

About Alec Baldwin
Alec Baldwin last appeared on stage in the Bay Street Theatre (Sag Harbor, Long Island) production of Ira Lewis' Gross Points in the fall of 2001. His other stage appearances include – BROADWAY: A Streetcar Named Desire, directed by Gregory Mosher (Tony Nomination). Joe Orton's LOOT, directed by John Tillinger (Theatre World Award). Caryl Churchill's Serious Money. OFF-BROADWAY: Macbeth in the 1998 New York Shakespeare Festival production, directed by George C. Wolf. Prelude to a Kiss at Circle Rep, directed by Norman Rene (Obie Award). David Mamet's Life in the Theatre at the Hartman, directed by A.J. Antoon.

On film Baldwin has appeared in Pearl Harbor, State and Main, Thomas and the Magic Railroad, Outside Providence, The Edge with Anthony Hopkins, Mercury Rising, Ghosts of Mississippi, The Juror, Heaven's Prisoners, The Shadow, Malice, Glengarry Glen Ross, Prelude to a Kiss, The Hunt for Red October, Great Balls of Fire, Alice, Miami Blues, Working Girl, Talk Radio, Married to the Mob, Beetlejuice, She's Having a Baby , among others.

Baldwin began his career in daytime television on the NBC series "The Doctors." He went on to numerous television roles including "Knot's Landing" on CBS and "Dress Gray," an NBC mini-series. Baldwin produced and starred in the film The Confession (winner of the Writer's Guild Award for Best Adapted Screenplay) that was released by Cinemax Television. He co-produced and starred in the TNT television mini-series "Nuremberg: Infamy on Trial." Baldwin has been nominated for an Emmy for his role as Secretary of Defense Robert McNamara in "Path to War", an HBO Films production on the Johnson administration's Vietnam policy from 1964 to 1968, directed by the late John Frankenheimer.

Baldwin recently completed shooting the feature film The Last Shot with Matthew Broderick, written and directed by Jeff Nathanson. Also completed recently, The Cooler with William H. Macy for Ed Pressman's Content Films, the TNT cable movie "Second Nature", starring Baldwin and Powers Boothe ("Second Nature" was co-produced by Baldwin's production company El Dorado Pictures), and an adaptation of Dr. Seuss' classic children's book The Cat in the Hat which stars Mike Myers and is directed by Bo Welch.

Baldwin is also involved in several causes related to public policy. He is a board member of People for the American Way. He also serves on the board of the Carol M. Baldwin Breast Cancer Research Fund, sponsored by Stonybrook University in honor of his mother. Baldwin is a member of the NYU Tisch School of The Arts Dean's Council and serves on Bay Street Theatre's Board. He is a board member of the New York Shakespeare Festival, and a dedicated supporter of various animal rights groups.

Alec Baldwin is a native of Massapequa, Long Island. He is a graduate of the New York University Tisch School of The Arts (BFA). Baldwin studied acting at the Lee Strasberg Theatre Institute under Elaine Aiken. He also studied with Mira Rostova. He has a daughter, Ireland Eliesse Baldwin.

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Comments [1]

Kenneth Bennett Lane, Lake Hiawatha, NJ from Richard Wagner Music Drama Institute, Boonton, NJ

NATIONAL ENDOWMENT FOR THE ARTS if what has been expressed is true, is a MISNOMER.
How can gaming, mobile and web-based projects NOW be given large grants when the museums and performing arts are left to forage for leftovers in Paradise Lost. AYN RAND it appears is the guru, albeit deceased, for the mischievous, greedy politicos and the one percenters who have bought dirt cheap this government and much of the communications industry. RUPERT MURDOCH in Great Briton is rightfully scolded and denounced for his policies. If JUSTICE really prevailed, many at the bench today would be retired. We need a Roosevelt, FDR, idealism and funding for all the professions and jobs as he did in his terms of office in the 1930s and 1940s. Acquaintances of ours who had bought homes here in the USA, say that the current aura, current vibes, remind them of the GERMANY they lived in just before the NAZIS took command. Should greed be considered to be ALL-AMERICAN !!! The Germans of today realize the curse Nazism was for them. They are less likely than anyone to repeat that era of intolerance, hate, and slaughter. I have admiration for the German people and their Kunst. I am a Wagnerian heldentenor, an opera composer, and director of the Richard Wagner Music Drama Institute, where there is voice instruction and coaching of all Wagner's oeuvre of opera roles and coaching for all of the plays of Shakespeare.

May. 01 2012 06:49 PM

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