Moscow Exhibition in Honor of the 150th Anniversary of ‘Alice in Wonderland’

From our Russian correspondent we have news of a fantastic exhibition in Moscow including a statue of Lewis Carroll!  From the Moscow Times:

doc6o7hjduhgkpfo0o0h84_800_480The exhibition “Alice in Wonderland” is dedicated to the anniversary of the famous book by Lewis Carroll. It opened recently in Saltykov-Chertkovs mansion. The location for the exhibition is not accidental. The famous writer, mathematician, logician, philosopher, deacon and photographer Charles Lutwidge Dodgson (Lewis Carroll) spent his whole life, without leaving his native England. However, there is one country for which he made an exception, and that was Russia. In 1867 Lewis Carroll made his first and only trip abroad – to Russia. He visited Moscow, St. Petersburg, Nizhny Novgorod and Sergiev Posad. He came to our country with the mission of supporting cooperation between the Anglican and Orthodox churches. In Moscow he visited the famous library in the mansion Chertkov on Myasnitskaya Street. After a century and a half, an exhibition dedicated to his “Alice” was opened at this museum.

The Moscow exhibition is made on the principle of “opening episodes”, each visitor will be able to look at the story told by Carroll more volume. In addition to illustrations of produced for the book throughout the years, the exhibition will have the honor of presenting the beautiful stained-glass windows by British artist Geoffrey Webb for the first time, which decorate the chapel in Daresbury, Cheshire, in the cherished home of the famous writer.nejgwrykzz nhs

On a show space of 1500 square meters,  fantasy worlds come alive for both children and adults. As soon as visitors step into the old mansion they will feel  that it is not just a house, but a real place of wonders. There is a seven-meter mirror,  the ‘looking glass’ through which Alice entered a different world, a “hanging” library, a “disappearing garden”, the largest kaleidoscope in Europe,  the throne room of the Red and the White Queen, a room of dreams, Alice’s lawn, a Jabberwock skeleton, and of course the White Rabbit’s house. In addition, visitors can relax on cushions in the cinema and see restored fragments of the original silent film “Alice in Wonderland”, which was directed in the UK by Cecil M. Hepworth in 1903. In the Gothic hall, visitors will see the first multi-illusion “100 Stories” illustrations for “Alice in Wonderland” by Sir John Tenniel, which are now recognized canonical pieces.

Visit this site for details and tickets.  Runs through March 1st, 2016.


Andrew Sellon will Introduce Paramount’s 1933 Alice at Film Forum in NYC

Film Forum Wonderland Screening Promo CropLCSNA president emeritus Andrew Sellon will be giving a very brief intro before the screening of the 1933 Paramount “Alice in Wonderland” film this Sunday, December 6th at the Film Forum in NYC.  Showtime is 12:45 pm.  For tickets and more info click here.


SymphonySpace to Perform Selected Shorts: Alice in Wonderland

The Alice150 conference may be over, but the Alice events continue!  Symphony Space in New York City is hosting an evening of readings from and inspired by Alice! Readers include Joyce Carol OatesDan Stevens (Downton Abbey), Ari Graynor (Whip It), Linda Lavin, and BD Wong. Don’t be late!

Peter Jay Sharp Theatre at Symphony Space
Wed, Nov 18, 2015 7:30pm



Wonderland of Whimsy: Poetry in Celebration of Lewis Carroll

Carrollian April Lynn James (aka Madison Hatta) will be presenting Wonderland of Whimsy: Poetry in Celebration of Lewis Carroll at The Swerve at the Mt. Airy Garage on October 3rd at 7pm, admission $5.  This is one of many events in celebration of Alice150, if you are in the Philadelphia area don’t miss it as April is exceptionally entertaining.  From the Swerve page:

Bring your most whimsical, Tea-lightful (and G-rated) poems inspired by Alice and her adventures (in Wonderland or Through the Looking Glass), childhood, Lewis Carroll, Snarks, Fairies or life in general to our Open Mic. Your hosts for the evening will be April Lynn James, PhD and her alter ego, Madison Hatta, Sonneteer. They will share selections from their new chapbook, Madison Hatta’s Book of Unreasonable Rhymes (forthcoming from Philly’s own Moonstone Press). Jazz backbeats to the spoken words provided by Tank & Co.

11 West Mt. Airy Ave.
Philadelphia, PA 19119


Alice150 in New York: Daily News September 4

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Celebrate 150 years of ‘Alice in Wonderland’ this fall with events in NYC and elsewhere

Friday, September 4, 2015, 2:21 PM
Lewis Carroll's "Alice's Adventures in Wonderland" was published 150 years ago this year.BRITISH LIBRARY/WIKIMEDIA COMMONS

Lewis Carroll’s “Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland” was published 150 years ago this year.

Why is a raven like a writing desk? Lewis Carroll never gave us an answer to the Mad Hatter’s famous riddle in “Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland,” but the answers to plenty of other questions about the author and his iconic work can be found this fall at museum and library events in New York and around the world. This year marks 150 years since Alice’s journey down the rabbit hole was first published in 1865. Having inspired countless film adaptations, theatrical stagings, translations, parodies and even video games, its legacy today is unmistakable. Historians and librarians are taking the opportunity to pay homage to the beloved children’s book by showcasing artifacts, rare editions, performances and other exhibits related to Carroll and “Alice.” Here’s a list of highlights in the New York City area. From now through Oct. 11, the Morgan Library and Museum is hosting the original manuscript of “Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland,” usually held at the British Library in London. Rare editions of the book, original letters and drawings, and never-before-seen items are also featured in the exhibit,“Alice: 150 Years of Wonderland.”

The beloved book, with illustrations by John Tenniel, has inspired countless films, stage productions and translations.WIKIMEDIA COMMONS

The beloved book, with illustrations by John Tenniel, has inspired countless films, stage productions and translations.

A century and a half after its publication, Carroll’s “Alice” is still being translated into different languages around the world. A unique exhibit at theGrolier Club book society in Manhattan will showcase translations of the work. “Alice in a World of Wonderlands: The Translations of Lewis Carroll’s Masterpiece” opens Sept. 16 and runs through Nov. 21. At Brooklyn Public Library’s Central Library branch, the Lewis Carroll Society will give a dramatic reading of the “The Mad Tea Party,” one of the most memorable chapters of the book. Set for Sept. 19, it’s part of the “bookend events” for this year’s Brooklyn Book Festival. FOLLOW THE PAGE VIEWS BLOG ON TWITTER At the New York Public Library for the Performing Arts, a free multimedia exhibit will present the history of Carroll’s Alice stories on the stage, starting with the first theatrical performance in 1886. Playbills, ads and photos will be displayed alongside audio and video to illustrate these performances, with an emphasis on productions in New York. “Alice Live!” will be at the Donald and Mary Oenslager Gallery at Lincoln Center from Oct. 2 through Jan. 16. MoMath, the Museum of Mathematics, will explore the art, magic and math of “Alice in Wonderland” at one of their “Unbounded” adult-only theme nights on Oct. 2.

A new 150th anniversay edition includes Salvador Dali's artwork.PRINCETON UNIVERSITY PRESS

A new 150th anniversay edition includes Salvador Dali’s artwork.

On Oct. 8, Mark Burstein, president emeritus of the Lewis Carroll Society of North America and editor of several books about Carroll, will appear at92nd Street Y for a talk on the legacy of “Alice in Wonderland,” with a focus on his Salvador Dali-illustrated edition of the book. The Disney movies based on “Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland” are perhaps even more well-known than the book.Sony Wonder Technology Lab in New York City is celebrating the 150th anniversary of the book with screenings of some of the iconic films it has inspired, including the 1951 animated “Alice in Wonderland” and Tim Burton’s 2010 live-action version. They’ll also host a Wonderland-themed workshop on animation, where participants can create their own short animated movie. Those events will be held Oct. 10, but throughout October, they’re also showing a 14-minute behind-the-scenes short film about the 2010 movie. The Rosenbach Museum & Library in Philadelphia is honoring “Alice” with several events and exhibitions starting in October, including “Alice in Philly-land,” which explores the city’s connections to the work. There’s also a “Croquet in Wonderland” party at Dilworth Park Oct. 15, and an interactive gallery at the museum will let visitors try to solve some of Carroll’s famous riddles and puzzles. On the Web, a group of 12 Carroll scholars have been picking apart the book chapter by chapter. Follow their annotations and see some animated “remixes” of the illustrations on Medium.  Other events are being held throughout the U.S. and the world. Check out for more..


A Personal Guided Tour of the Morgan Exhibit by Danny Ashkenasi

from Notes from a Composer
personal musings on music, theater and a life in the arts by Danny Ashkenasi


August 12, 2015

Alice and me

Alice exhibit 1

Yesterday my Speakeasy co-producer Kelly Aliano and I went to The Morgan museum to take in their Alice – 150 Years of Wonderland exhibit, and tour the ground floor of the magnate’s palatial home and library too.  As Lewis Carroll’s Alice books are such a big part of my musical Speakeasy – the Adventures of John and Jane Allison in the Wonderland, it seemed very apropos to check out this exhibit and share some impressions on this blog.  Photography was allowed but limited only to those items that are part of the Morgan collection and not on loan.

We joined a tour in progress.  The volunteer guide regaled us with the story of how Carroll, who initially independently financed the publishing of his books, considered the first press run not up to his exacting standards.  So a new edition was produced at great expense.  The “spoiled” books were not scrapped, however, but were shipped out for sale in the US market.  I guess what wasn’t good enough for home consumption was just fine for the uncouth Yankees.

Alice exhibit 4Alice exhibit 5

Alice exhibit 2

The exhibit focuses heavily on John Tenniel’s original illustrations, which in the guide’s (and my humble) opinion are the standard against which all future illustrations are (usually unfavorably) measured.  John Tenniel, who lived to be 94(!), drew only in pencil, so any ink or colored in version of his work would be a copy, not necessarily a forgery but often mistakenly attributed to Tenniel.  For “Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland” Carroll meticulously pre-planned subject and lay-out of all illustrations, and drew many himself.  He was unsatisfied with the quality of his own work, and thus turned to Tenniel.  When Carroll hired Tenniel to illustrate the second Alice book “Through the Looking Glass”, Carroll had so much confidence in Tenniel’s work that he gave the artist free reign to choose and design the illustrations.  Carroll even excised a chapter called “The Wasp in the Wig”, when Tenniel insisted it was not possible to illustrate such a thing.

Alice exhibit 3

A highlight of the exhibit was the screening of a surviving print of a 1903 silent movie short of Alice in Wonderland.  Very few movies of that era survive, so this is something special, especially considering that it shows that certain camera tricks and special effects were already in use so early in film making history (the screen picture in The Morgan is brighter than this YouTube embed.  The shot where Alice “shrinks” or “grows” shows the background against which she is changing size more clearly, for example):

For shame, Danny, plying a minor with dubious potent portables!

Kelly and Alice. Kelly is at the right.

The Guide solicited readings from the attendees, which is how I was roped into reciting the Jabberwocky in full classical actor mode, after I had heedlessly mumbled out loud that it is a rather difficult poem to sight-read:

‘Twas brillig, and the slithy toves

Did gyre and gimble in the wabe:

All mimsy were the borogoves

And the mome raths outgrabe



Luckily my classical training (cough cough) stood me in good stead and I managed a credible performance.  The guide talked about how the poem has been translated into several languages.  One attendee said that should be easy, since you wouldn’t have to translate the “nonsense” words but simply “copy them”.  But I didn’t think it would be so easy, although I kept my thoughts to myself.  The sounds of letters don’t translate directly from language to language, and even so don’t necessarily evoke the same feelings from language to language, so some thought would have to be put into effectively translating even a nonsense word.  And a google search of the German version, called “Der Jammerwoch”, bears that out.

alice exhibit 8Alice exhibit 9

Identity, unfixed, mutable, confounding, its loss or the changing ways one is perceived by others and by oneself, is a big part of Carroll’s Alice books.

This theme is carried over into the musical “Speakeasy”.

Much like Alice in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass, Speakeasy’s John and Jane Allison find themselves changing in subtle and alarming ways.  Who and what they are is questioned and challenged repeatedly, by others and even themselves.  John, like Alice, even literally forgets himself, falling into a kind of identity amnesia at one point.

The name Lewis Carroll itself is an identity that the author, born Charles Lutwidge Dodgson, created (see right).

There is so much more to see at the Morgan’s Alice exhibit, and so much more for me to say about Alice and Speakeasy.  For now, look forward to more articles and enjoy the ones already posted.

And to close, below are some images from the main part of The Morgan: ground floor of J.P. Morgan’s wildly opulent home with its cathedral parlor, massive library, and the richly musty, dark study.

The Parlor:

Morgan 1Morgan 2

Morgan 3

The Library:

morgan 4 morgan 5

Morgan 6

The Study:

Morgan 7Morgan 8

Morgan 9

The large vault, where Morgan kept especially valuable books

Major priceless paintings line the walls of the study, but pride of place of course goes to the portrait of J. P. Morgan himself


Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland “Mad Hatter’s Mashup Party”

mad hatter mashupSomething really cool is happening this month in honor of Alice 150 – a giant social, open source, public domain, digital publishing event all centered around Alice.  Sponsored by and hosted on Medium, a social writing platform created by Twitter co-founder Ev Williams.

This event invites anyone to publish their own digital version of Alice using public domain art or their own.  A dozen noted Carrollians – including our fearless leader Stephanie Lovett – will each annotate a chapter of Alice.  In addition, artists are also being commissioned to create new illustrations – more to follow.  For details on this and how to be a part of it, check out the event page and join the fun!  Medium have done some of the legwork already:

To help people get started, we are hosting the original text, formatted for Medium, which participants are free to copy and use to build their own digital editions. We have also gathered many public domain art works inspired by Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, including the original illustrations accompanying the first edition by Sir John Tenniel, illustrations from Arthur Rackham, two silent black and white movie adaptations and other inspirations, which participants are free to use in addition to their own art.


Wall Street Journal article of June 12: For the anniversary of ‘Alice in Wonderland,’ translations into Pashto, Esperanto, emoji and Blissymbols

This post contains excerpts from the WSJ article, which emphasizes Alice translations, including a preview of the ground-breaking three volume set, Alice in a World of Wonderlands.

See full article

“Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland,” Lewis Carroll’s 1865 classic about a pert girl in a pinafore who falls down a rabbit hole into a magical and menacing underground world, is marking its 150th anniversary with new translations. She is Alis (in Yiddish), or Alisi (in Tongan) or Anya (in Russian), and, despite her advanced age, to readers everywhere she remains a curious youngster whose adventures have never gone out of print.

Two Yale professors are translating “Alice” into Late Egyptian hieroglyphs. A language consultant in California is putting the finishing touches on a Kazakh translation. There is an emoji version. An edition in Scouse, the dialect of Liverpool, is with the publisher; so are ones in Cockney rhyming slang and in two Afghan languages, Dari and Pashto. The Gothic translation came out just last week.




Alice in a World of Wonderlands

Lewis Carroll’s 1865 classic ‘Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland,’ is probably second only to the 17th-century allegory, ‘The Pilgrim’s Progress,’ as the most translated English novel. A three-volume work documents more than 170 translations, from Afrikaans to Zulu. 

Sinhala translation of ‘Alice in Wonderland,’ 1963
Georgian translation, 1969
Armenian translation, 1971
Bosnian translation, 1980
Marathi translation, 1982
Papiamento translation, 1988
Asturian translation, 1989
Gujarati translation, 1950
Occitan translation, 1998
Bengali translation, 2004
Albanian translation, 2006
Manx translation, 2006
Tamil translation, 2008
Assamese translation, 2008
Indonesian translation, 2009
Slovak translation, 2010
Persian translation, 2012

‘Alice in a World of Wonderlands’

Sinhala translation of ‘Alice in Wonderland,’ 1963

1 of 18



Sinhala translation of ‘Alice in Wonderland,’ 1963 Oak Knoll Press
Georgian translation, 1969 Oak Knoll Press
Armenian translation, 1971 Oak Knoll Press
Bosnian translation, 1980 Oak Knoll Press
Marathi translation, 1982 Oak Knoll Press
Papiamento translation, 1988 Oak Knoll Press
Asturian translation, 1989 Oak Knoll Press
Gujarati translation, 1950 Oak Knoll Press
Occitan translation, 1998 Oak Knoll Press
Bengali translation, 2004 Oak Knoll Press
Albanian translation, 2006 Oak Knoll Press
Manx translation, 2006 Oak Knoll Press
Tamil translation, 2008 Oak Knoll Press
Assamese translation, 2008 Oak Knoll Press
Indonesian translation, 2009 Oak Knoll Press
Slovak translation, 2010 Oak Knoll Press
Persian translation, 2012 Oak Knoll Press
Sinhala translation of ‘Alice in Wonderland,’ 1963 Oak Knoll Press

Wall Street Journal Article on Alice 150 and Translations

Everyone is definitely jumping on the bandwagon for Alice’s 150th, including the Wall Street Journal.  Today’s issue features an article featuring discussion on all the various translations – including the upcoming work by Carrollian Jon Lindseth.  Check it out!


Alice Panel at DC’s Awesome-Con

Carrollians Ellie Schaefer-Salins, Matt Crandall, and Wendy Lane Crandall will be on a panel at this weekend’s DC comic book convention, Awesome-Con.  The panel is Friday, May 29th (that’s today) at 6PM.  From the convention schedule:

Why is a Raven like an IPad? The 150-Year Transmedia Evolution of Alice’s Adventures In Wonderland.  Friday, 6:00 PM – 7:00 PM, room 145 B.  2015 is the 150th anniversary of Lewis Carroll’s Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland. Alice has gone down the rabbit hole in films, TV shows, comic books, and even video games. This panel examines the impact of Alice on media, art, and modern culture.

This panel is presented by the Lean & Hungry Theater Company, who will be presenting their own adaptation of Alice on June 14th.  Details will be available at the panel, and at their website.