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This is ArtsJournal's collection of arts stories related to the terrorism acts in the United States on September 11. Stories are loosely organized by topic and arranged in chronological order within the topic categories. To go directly to the topic category, click on the links below.

World Trade Center
Artist Response
Arts Business
Popular Culture



ARCHIVED AFGHANI ART: The Taliban have systematically destroyed the art and culture of Afghanistan over the past seven years. The Art Newspaper chronicled the destruction in a series of articles, now archived online. The Art Newspaper 10/16/01

WAGGING THE WARTIME DOG: "American intelligence specialists are reported to have "secretly" sought advice on handling terrorist attacks from Hollywood film-makers. According to the trade paper Variety, a discussion group between movie and military representatives was held at the University of Southern California last week." BBC 10/08/01

STRIKE TWO FOR EMMYS: "Originally scheduled for Sept. 16, less than a week after the attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon, the Emmys were postponed to Oct. 7 and redesigned as a simulcast from New York to accommodate actors who were reluctant to board a plane for an awards show. In this atmosphere, the Emmys - compromised and chastened but emboldened to continue nevertheless - were pitched by academy leaders as nothing less than a retort to the terrorists." That's why Sunday's second cancellation caught many off guard. Los Angeles Times 10/08/01

HOLLYWOOD'S DISASTER SCENARIO: The US government is consulting with real experts in terrorist scenarios - Hollywood action movie makers. "An ad hoc working group convened at the University of Southern California just last week at the behest of the U.S. Army. The goal was to brainstorm about possible terrorist targets and schemes in America and to offer solutions to those threats, in light of the aerial assaults on the Pentagon and the World Trade Center." Washington Post (Variety) 10/08/01

MUSEUM ATTENDANCE WORRIES: Museum attendance in the US is down after September 11, in some cases dramatically down. "Some museums are beginning to rebound, but many smaller ones in lower Manhattan near the World Trade Center site had to close their doors for several weeks and may need years to recover, administrators say. Museums also expect that donors will divert contributions from cultural institutions to relief efforts. And as they survey the damage the museums are struggling to come up with ways to recoup." The New York Times 10/08/01 (one-time registration required for access)

ART MARKET CHALLENGE: Recession, war - is this the double whammy on the art business? "There is no evidence to suggest that the art market is about to collapse. Most dealers say that business may not be booming but could be worse, and the old adage that it is one of the last sectors to be affected by recession (but also one of the last to recover) seems to be holding true. This is not, however, to suggest that all is well." The Telegraph (UK) 10/08/01

ITALIAN TOWN HELPS REBUILD NEW YORK CHURCH: One of the smallest architectural victims of September 11 was St. Nicholas Greek Orthodox Church, which stood across the street from ground zero. Parishioners are raising money to rebuild, and already have a half-million dollar head start - a surprise donation from the town of Bari, Italy. St. Nicholas was the patron saint of Bari. NPR [audio file] 01/10/01

THEY ALREADY BAILED OUT THE AIRLINES... A bill has been proposed in the US Congress to help promote New York. The new law "would allow individuals to deduct $500, and joint filers $1000, from their federal income taxes for the cost of meals, lodging or entertainment in New York City through Dec. 31, 2002. Taxpayers would be eligible for the deduction whether or not they itemized their taxes." Theatre.com 10/01/01

BROADWAY REBOUND: It was easy, when Broadway attendance plummeted in the days after September 11, to fear for the future of theatre in New York. But a week later the theaters were packed with people, and it was clear that people came out to the shows for a sense of community. And isn't that one of the things theatre does best? Hartford Courant 09/30/01

THREAT OF SLOWDOWN: Generally, the New York terrorist attacks won't have a big impact on the art and antiques business. "The big problem will be the economic slowdown. Some dealers are already doing less business, and finding it harder to extract payment on antiques sold. Fairs will also suffer. The first victim was this week's new 20th-century art fair organised by the indefatigable London dealers Brian and Anna Haughton in New York." Financial Times 09/28/01

IF YOU AUCTION IT, WILL THEY BUY? Buyers, sellers, auction houses, show organizers - everyone is worried about the Fall art season. It's a half-billion dollar occasion, or it was projected to be one. Now with postponements of shows, disruption of travel and shipping plans, market jitters, and financial uncertainties, no one is sure what to expect. The New York Times o9/27/01 (one-time registration required for access)

TO POSTPONE OR NOT TO POSTPONE: The Canadian Museum of Civilization scheduled an exhibition featuring the work of 25 Arab-Canadian artists, then decided to postpone it. One of the artists complained that the museum had "missed an opportunity to promote understanding of Arab culture at a time Arabs need it most." In Parliament, an opposition MP and the Prime Minister both agreed. The next move is up to the museum, which has so far been reluctant to comment. CBC 09/27/01

FILMING RESUMES IN MANHATTAN: For the first time since September 11, New York City is issuing permits for filming in Manhattan; filming in the outer boroughs began last week. Several commercials and at least five feature films are lined up, along with the 13 TV series which film there regularly. New York Post 09/27/01

ART(ISTS) IN THE WTC: Few people knew that there were artists working in the World Trade Center. "For the last few years the Lower Manhattan Cultural Council had rented out floors to artists a few months at a time. There was always the occasional empty space in the towers because they were normally leased for 10 years at a time rather then piecemeal." At least one artist is thought to have died in the tower attack. The Art Newspaper 09/24/01

FOR THE MOST PART, ART KEEPS ON COMING TO NEW YORK: "As the days since Sept. 11 creep by, the number of cancellations by arts groups and performers traveling to New York is beginning to dwindle [although] some groups are still backing out of the fall season lineup, either because of lingering worries about safety, changes in airline schedules or a sense that now is not the best time to engage a skittish audience." The New York Times 09/26/01 (one-time registration required for access)

WTC ART LOSSES: Estimates of losses of art (only in the destroyed World Trade Towers, not in surrounding buildings) are estimated at $100 million by AXA Nordstern Art Insurance, the world's largest art insurer. The Art Newspaper 09/24/01

POWELL PULLS OUT: Actress Linda Powell, daughter of the US Secretary of State, has pulled out of a role in London's National Theatre. "She was due to arrive here in October, but has withdrawn from the show for obvious security reasons." BBC 09/25/01

BROADWAY BACK UP: Audiences returned to Broadway theatres this past weekend. "A number of Broadway shows played to standing-room-only crowds on Saturday and Sunday, though tickets to all but the most popular productions were heavily discounted. Yesterday, many producers said 25 percent to 50 percent of their business this past weekend came from the half-price TKTS booth in Times Square." New York Post 09/25/01

CHICAGO ARTS DOWN: Broadway isn't the only arts sector hit with sagging box office. Arts ticket sales are down in cities like Chicago too. "Although the Lyric Opera is mostly pre-sold, the symphony is having problems and the theaters are way down. So is movie attendance. And although subscriptions have been up at the Joffrey, the company depends heavily on box-office sales during the weeks and days before a season." Chicago Sun-Times 09/25/01

CHANGING HOLLYWOOD: "Everywhere you look in Hollywood since that tragic day, the entertainment landscape has been transformed, as if ripped asunder by a massive earthquake. People have come to work feeling like jittery sleepwalkers, especially after the studios received FBI warnings late last week that they could be possible targets for terrorism. Nearly every studio has been postponing films, giving them face lifts or tossing scripts out the window." Los Angeles Times 09/25/01

KEEPING KATE ALIVE: "Kiss Me Kate posted its closing notice last week on Broadway after business bombed. But on Sunday, the show's cast and crew decided not only to take a 25 percent pay cut to keep ths show open, but also to spend 25 percent of their salaries on buying tickets to the show, which they'll then donate. Sunday "the play began with an actor walking on stage, sweeping off the closing notice and singing the first few words of the first song in the Cole Porter musical, Another Op'nin', Another Show. The audience cheered." Nando Times (AP) 09/24/01

MAJOR COLLECTION DESTROYED: "The global securities firm Cantor Fitzgerald, whose New York headquarters was destroyed with the loss of hundreds of staff, was founded by B Gerald Cantor, the greatest private collector of works by Rodin in the world." The firm's corporate collection on the 105th floor continued Cantor's art tradition and lost hundreds of pieces of art. The Guardian (UK) 09/22/01

ART FAIR CANCELED: "The third annual International Art and Design Fair, 1900-2001, scheduled to open at the armory on Sept. 29, was canceled this week. The fates of dozens of other fairs are now in question, too, including the International Fine Art and Antique Dealers Show and others like it, which have been part of the New York social calendar for decades." The New York Times 09/21/01 (one-time registration required for access)

WHEN THE TOURISTS STAY HOME: It's grim on Broadway. Shows are going bankrupt and five are closing. Six others, including several long-running productions, are on the verge of shutting down. "A show like Rent, for example, needs to bring in about $40,000 a day to meet its costs. Its sales since the attacks have ranged from $1,800 (on Sept. 11) to $14,000 (on Wednesday)." The New York Times 09/21/01 (one-time registration required for access)

  • PAY CUTS INSTEAD OF LAYOFFS: To keep big Broadway shows from closing, theatre unions make deal with producers - "a 25 percent across-the-board pay cuts for cast and crew at five shows - Chicago, Rent, The Phantom of the Opera, Les Miserables and The Full Monty. The cuts will be in place for four weeks beginning next week. If business does not improve, they can be renegotiated." New York Post 09/21/01
  • PRODUCERS PIN HOPES ON THE ROAD: With business so bad on Broadway, producers are hoping that touring road shows will be their "lifeline." Meanwhile, some touring productions have abandoned air travel for the ground. Chicago Tribune 09/21/01
  • THEATRE DISASTER: Broadway's "total income fell more than 60 percent from the previous week." Theatre.com 09/20/01

AIDA CANCELED: The annual Egyptian performances of Aida at the pyramids have been cancelled after tour groups called off their trips. Ironically, last year's performances also were cancelled, because "organisers said they wanted to focus resources on this year's shows, which would have coincided with the centenary of Verdi's death." BBC 09/20/01

NO TIME FOR FUN RIGHT NOW: The host of a Canadian TV show which pokes fun at the differences between Canada and the United States has withdrawn his nomination for a Gemini award, saying "this is a time to offer unconditional support to Americans." CBC 09/20/01

A DIFFICULT ACT: "Broadway is one of the worlds of New York reeling hardest from the events of last week. People don't seem to feel right enjoying themselves, being entertained. So yesterday was not a typical matinee day. The restaurants around Times Square were not full. The sidewalks were not crowded. Tour buses were in short supply. And tickets were available (except for The Producers, which sold out). Producers, theater owners and unions are all talking about how to keep business on Broadway alive over the next few weeks, when tourists are expected to stay home." The New York Times 09/20/01 (one-time registration required for access)

MUSIC BANNED IN AFGHANISTAN: "Music is the latest activity to be banned by the Taliban, the movement that rules most of Afghanistan with a religious zeal that has led it to declare that dancing, singing and television are also anti-Islamic." Baltimore Sun (from the Chicago Tribune) 09/18/01

38 MUSEUMS AFFECTED IN LOWER MANHATTAN: The American Association of Museums sets up a website to provide information on museums and staff in the affected area of lower Manhattan. There are 38 museums within the zone. American Association of Museums

BROADWAY'S TOURIST PROBLEM: Broadway shows are suffering as tourists stay home. "Among those hardest hit are some of Broadway's best known titles, including long-running shows like Phantom of the Opera, Les Misérables and Rent, productions that rely heavily on tourists, which are in short supply as a steady stream of frightening images spread across the country and the world. Also hurting were a handful of well-received revivals, including The Music Man, Chicago and Kiss Me, Kate." The New York Times 09/19/01 (one-time registration required for access)

PHILLY TOUR IS ON: "Following a meeting with the musicians between rehearsals yesterday, Philadelphia Orchestra president Joseph H. Kluger announced that the [domestic] tour would go on with heightened security, contingent on any airport closings. In addition, the orchestra will travel with a former member of the White House Secret Service who will be in touch with the FBI daily." Philadelphia Inquirer 09/18/01

  • Previously: CANCELING THE MUSIC? The Philadelphia Orchestra considers canceling its upcoming tour because of terrorism concerns. "Historically one of the world's most well-traveled orchestras, the Philadelphia has been scheduled to begin a three-week tour Sept. 21 and go to Dallas, Las Vegas, San Francisco, Kalamazoo, Mich., and eight other cities." Philadelphia Inquirer 09/13/01

$10 MILLION IN PUBLIC ART LOST IN ATTACK: "Experts familiar with the public art displayed in and around the World Trade Center estimated its value alone at more than $10 million. Among the prized works were a bright-red 25-foot Alexander Calder sculpture on the Vesey Street overpass at Seven World Trade Center, a painted wood relief by Louise Nevelson that hung in the mezzanine of One World Trade Center, a painting by Roy Lichtenstein from his famous "Entablature" series from the 1970s in the lobby of Seven World Trade Center, and Joan Miro's "World Trade Center" tapestry from 1974." San Francisco Chronicle 09/18/01

NY W/O TV: The World Trade Center disaster knocked 10 New York TV stations off over-the-air broadcast, because the stations' transmitters were located on the towers. "At least four will resume transmissions from the relatively remote - and shorter - Armstrong radio tower on the Palisades at Alpine, N.J. Two other stations are installing transmitters and antennas atop the already-crowded Empire State Building - the original home of New York's TV stations until the taller World Trade Center was completed in the early '70s." New York Post 09/17/01

RESCHEDULING THE GRAMMYS (MAYBE): The Latin Grammys were cancelled last week. They had already generated lots of controversy and had been moved from Miami to Los Angeles. "Although salvaging a full-blown Latin Grammy production would be a long shot, organizers said they are hoping for a possible new date of Nov. 30." Los Angeles Times 09/17/01

ART LOSSES AT THE WTC: "From the displacement of experimental theater and film companies to the likely obliteration of more than $10 million worth of art in and around the World Trade Center — including works by Alexander Calder, Nevelson, Miró and Lichtenstein — arts groups are surveying the wreckage, trying to measure the extent of their losses and to determine how to begin to recoup." The New York Times 09/17/01 (one-time registration required for access)

SHOWS GO ON: "At the urging of Mayor Rudolph W. Giuliani and Schuyler G. Chapin, the commissioner of cultural affairs, many of the city's premier museums opened their doors yesterday, after closing in the wake of the attacks. Meanwhile, producers vowed that all 23 Broadway productions would be performed last night after a moment of silence and a dimming of the marquee lights in recognition of the victims." The New York Times 09/14/01 (one-time registration required for access)

  • POLITICS OF POST-TERRORISM: Deciding whether or not to cancel performances after terrorism involves a number of factors - is the performance appropriate? Are performers stranded in other cities with the airport shutdowns? "Along with performance cancellations, some have found themselves axing glittery opening galas, directing ticket proceeds to relief efforts or adding special onstage tributes for victims." Los Angeles Times 09/13/01

KILLING NY THEATRE: Broadway producers are worrying that the World Trade Center attacks may help kill the good times Broadway has enjoyed for the past decade. New York theatre depends heavily on the tourist trade - that was already down this summer from last year's record levels, and is "likely to dry up now that New York City 'has a big bull's-eye painted on its face'." New York Post 09/14/01

CANCELLATIONS AFTER TERRORISM: Latin Grammys, Emmys, canceled in wake of terrorist attacks. Broadway closes up. Nando Times (AP) 09/11/01

HOLSTERING THE FLAGS: The last night of the Proms in London are usually a grandly patriotic affair with patriotic music and plenty of flag waving. In the wake of the terrorism in New York, the Prom last night will go on, but absent the patriotic displays. "We're not going to actively ban flags, but it's clearly inappropriate. There's no sense of joviality or celebration that the flag waving has become a part of." The Guardian (UK) 09/13/01

REEL DECISION: The Toronto Film Festival weighs whether to finish up the festival or cancel. "Movies reflect the world around them, and so do film festivals - even when that world is plunged for a time into chaos and the dark. Was it right to continue an event that celebrates art and entertainment, in the midst of real-life madness and death?" Chicago Tribune 09/15/01

World Trade Center/Tall Buildings

A CALL FOR CAREFUL CONSIDERATION: It seems like everyone has a vision for the future of the World Trade Center space in New York. Memorials, new skyscrapers, and a massive public park have all been proposed. "This rush to design is worth thinking about. It will be months and years before the cultural meaning of the World Trade Center catastrophe comes into approximate focus. But the collective projection of architectural fantasies bears scrutiny as it is happening." The New York Times 09/30/01 (one-time registration required for access)

  • TOWERING LIGHTS: "A team of artists and architects is planning to erect a massive light sculpture to simulate the outline of the 110-storey World Trade Center. Beams of xenon light stabbing skyward would coalesce into a kind of apparition of the fallen twin towers." Toronto Star (first item) 09/29/01

POLITICS OF REBUILDING: There is still a mountain of rubble where the World Trade Center once stood, but already there are politicians and fund-raisers and businesspeople and historians and cultural critics and architects and Heaven-knows-how-many-others trying to decide just what ought to be built in its place. If anything. Washington Post 09/26/01

THE FUTURE OF SKYSCRAPERS: "Until September 11, the skyscraper enthusiasts felt that everything was going their way. In this country [England], they were confident of winning next month's public inquiry into the proposed Heron Tower at Bishopsgate in the City of London and of pushing through Renzo Piano's much higher tower intended for London Bridge. Now they are nervous, as can be seen in a statement Norman Foster put out on Tuesday this week, stressing the risks to all buildings with high concentrations of people, not just towers, and calling for a period of calm reflection and careful analysis." The Telegraph (UK) 09/22/01

REBUILD, YES. BUT WHAT? "The urge to make buildings higher and higher has been fading for the last few years, for purely practical reasons. Constructing towers of a hundred stories or more isn't much of a challenge technologically today, but it is not particularly economical, either. It never was." In fact, "smaller buildings on the World Trade Center site might be necessary. After all, what businesses or residents will want to occupy the upper floors of replica towers, and what companies would want to insure them?" The New Yorker & ABCNews 09/24/01

REBUILDING THE TOWERS - A COMPLEX ISSUE: The towers of the World Trade Center now are such a powerful image that there's already much discussion about re-building them. But is that a good idea? The record shows that, from the time they were proposed, many critics thought they were ugly, and worse. Another factor is our fascination with ruins. "Can a way of life that has been so fractured ever truly be put back together?" Boston Globe & The New Republic 09/20/01

THE MODERN REACH FOR THE SKY: The great modernist skyscrapers weren't built just to be big. They were meant as a statement repudiating decoration and clutter. "A building should not derive meaning and character from the historical motifs that cluttered its skin, but from the direct, logical expression of its purpose and materials. This was the edict of functionalism, that—as Louis Sullivan put it—'form follows function'.” The New Criterion 09/01

DEATH OF THE SKYSCRAPER? "George W. Bush told the world last week that terrorism will not stand. Neither will the kind of architectural arrogance applauded in the 1970s when the World Trade Center was constructed." Architects will likely spend the next several years fleshing out the next generation of urban American office space. The Globe & Mail (Toronto) 09/18/01

THE BIGGEST BUILDING JOB EVER: When it was planned, and for many years after it was built, the World Trade Center was the biggest architectural project on earth. A New Yorker archive profile details what went into the construction of that symbol whose destruction is now a major image in American history and culture. The New Yorker 09/13/01

WHY ARCHITECTURE MATTERS : "[D]estroying architecture for political reasons is nothing new. The more important and powerful its symbolism, the higher a building is likely to rank on the target list of a bitter foe. The reasons are always the same. Architecture is evidence - often extraordinarily moving evidence - of the past. Buildings - their shapes, materials, textures and spaces - represent culture in its most persuasive physical form. Destroy the buildings, and you rob a culture of its memory, of its legitimacy, of its right to exist." Washington Post 09/13/01

Artist Response

ART AFTER WAR: "In the aftermath of the Sept. 11 catastrophes and the subsequent anthrax attacks, some Americans have responded by making art. Much of it is impromptu and transitory, driven by an impulse to eulogize the missing, the murdered and the heroic. New York City is the epicenter of this effusion, as it should be." Philadelphia Inquirer 10/21/01

HIGH ART OFTEN SPEECHLESS IN A CRISIS: "Although the artistic fruits of the recent national crisis and the current war have only begun to appear, the fine arts have not been particularly responsive to the major crises of American history." The enduring images of such times tend to be produced by non-artists whose work takes on artistic meaning after the fact. The New York Times 10/14/01 (one-time registration required for access)

LEBRECHT HAMMERS FEARFUL MUSICIANS: In the wake of the September 11 attacks, countless performers have had to decide whether to carry on with scheduled international tours. In general, orchestras that were already close to their departure dates have pressed on, while those with tours farther on in an uncertain future have begun to cancel in the face of government travel warnings. Few have faulted them for their caution, but critic Norman Lebrecht finds such cancellations cowardly. The Daily Telegraph (UK) 10/10/01

THE ART OF DOCUMENTED HORROR: "Photojournalists, professionally intimate with tragedy and its aftermath, have brought extraordinary images back from the hell downtown. Thoughtful, tough, full of feeling, and startlingly beautiful, their pictures have both fixed and shaped our experience of an event that even those who lived through it can't quite comprehend." Village Voice 10/09/01

WE WON'T GO: "Citing concerns about international travel, the Minnesota Orchestra has postponed its November tour to Japan." The announcement marks the first tour cancellation by a major American orchestra in the wake of the September 11 attacks. St. Paul Pioneer Press 10/06/01

FUNNY AGAIN... What leaders and commentators are saying to comedians is, "The country needs you to go back to being funny." But can they really go back? "This may be the event which historians look back to as the beginning of a new era of sensitivity, introspection and growth. It could produce new styles, new textures and new subjects." Nando Times 10/01/01

SINGING PROTEST: The protest song has a long honorable history. But "it is hard to imagine anyone in the grief-torn United States writing a direct riposte at this stage to Celine Dion's rendition of God Bless America a week ago or by extension to the war cry of the government. With more than 6500 dead, the grief is too raw. Does this mean the protest song is dead? Will it be cast forever in the shadows of the initial tragic event? There are murmurings of student protest if a war goes beyond what is deemed legitimate retribution. But will songs grow from these seeds?" The Age (Melbourne) 10/01/01

SAY IT THROUGH ART: Woody Allen says that the September 11th attacks are "fair game" for any artist who has something to say about them. "It is not likely that I would do something like that but I do think that it's fair game for any artist who has the inspiration or insight into that terrible event." The Guardian 09/30/01

POWER OF POETRY: Many have chosen poetry as a way to express their feelings after September 11. "Almost immediately after the event, improvised memorials often conceived around poems sprang up all over the city, in store windows, at bus stops, in Washington Square Park, Brooklyn Heights and elsewhere. And poems flew through cyberspace across the country in e-mails from friend to friend." The New York Times 10/01/01 (one-time registration required for access)

THE WORLD HAS CHANGED: How has September 11th affected British arts and artists? Cancellations, reduced business, and some redefinition of what is possible in art. The Guardian's critics take a survey. The Guardian (UK) 09/29/01

DOING WHAT THEY CAN: The desire to help the victims of the attack in one's own way has been ultimately visible in the multifaceted artistic community of America's largest city. "In New York, impromptu memorials to those lost Sept. 11 are going up, created not only by artists but also by mourners and passers-by and children." Baltimore Sun 09/30/01

TOUGH TIMES FOR CULTURAL JOURNALISTS: As the world's attention focused on the disaster in New York, arts journalists have had to think hard about their roles. "Interviewers and interviewees would agree they felt distracted, that today's topic seemed unimportant in comparison, and then trot through the usual questions and answers about the forthcoming book or the venerable dance troupe. Editors and producers were left scratching their heads as they tried to decide whether they would seem more insensitive by running unrelated stories ("Orchestra looking for new conductor") or by running related ones ("Whither the disaster movie?")" Globe & Mail (Canada) 09/27/01

RUMORS OF OUR DEATH... So irony is dead now, at least according to numerous U.S. pundits. So are beauty, truth, innocence, and trust. "The concept of a deadly terrorist attack fuelling an international debate on what was once just a literary term seems a bit odd. However, the temptation for commentators to sound the death knell is nothing new." National Post 09/28/01

  • FIGHTING BACK TEARS WITH BELLY LAUGHS: Ever since the attacks of September 11, comedians of all stripes have been walking on eggshells. Some offer deadly serious messages of condolence, some skirt the subject entirely, but no one has tried to make comedic hay from the tragedy. Then, this week, the latest issue of the satirical newspaper The Onion hit newsstands, with content devoted entirely to the fallout from the attacks. Daring? Yes. In poor taste? Perhaps. But very, very funny. Wired 09/27/01

WHY ART: Robert Brustein ponders the role of art in dark times. "It is necessary to look past the waved flags, and the silent moments of prayer, and the choruses of God Bless America, and try to keep the arts in focus. By lighting up the dark corridors of human nature, literature, drama, music, and painting can help temper our righteous demand for vengeance with a humanizing restraint. The American theater presently stands, like Estragon and Vladimir, under that leafless tree in Beckett's blasted plain. The show can't go on. It must go on. There can be no time when it's no time for comedy." The New Republic 09/27/01

ART IN A TIME OF FEAR: "Art can appear so insignificant when the world gets crazy. But the world has always been crazy, even if it hasn't been as horrifying. Art's been around a long time. It knows how to handle good times and bad. And it's never really been insignificant. Most art is superficial. However, the aesthetic experience (the term always rings tinny), the enigmatic interior place we go when we make or look at art, is still what it's always been: complex, rich, rewarding, meaningful, and moving. It is a place we will always return to. A place, presumably, we all come from. A place, moreover, that tells us things we didn't know we needed to know until we knew them." Village Voice 09/25/01

SIMPLE SHRINES AND STREET-CORNER ALTARS: In the wake of sudden and violent and public death, we are more and more finding simple shrines. "They are personal. They are peaceful. They are human. And they seem to be part of an increasingly common way of publicly mourning the dead in this country, in New York, in Oklahoma City, in Colorado, and in Chicago." Chicago Tribune 09/25/01

POWER OF IMAGE: Looking at photographs of the World Trade Center destruction "I know that I am not the only person who is uneasy about the magnetic pull of these photographs, about the hold they have on us, about the need we seem to have to keep looking at them. What, I ask after a while, is the point of looking at such pictures, at least the point of looking at them so much? Perhaps some insight can be gained by thinking about the need that the English had to make a visual record of the calamities raining down on them, of the urge they had to record the weird horrific beauty of the Blitz." The New Republic 09/18/01

HOW THE ARTS MAY CHANGE: "If the consensus is correct, the arts may change dramatically. No one can know what those changes will look like. In Western society, the response of art to a change in social conditions is never uniform and rarely obvious. And there is no guarantee whatsoever that art will rise to the occasion. Frivolous, decadent periods can produce brilliant art; serious times can produce pious bunk. If there is to be a profound change in art, however, its early harbinger will be impatience - even disgust - with the broad worldview that has sustained art during the past 40 years." New York Magazine 09/24/01

CONTEXT CHANGES ART: Art is changed by the context it is in. And that can change with events. "With the destruction of the World Trade Center this dynamic went into play. American culture was on instant high alert, scrambling both to accommodate what was happening and to avoid giving offense. Television shows were rescripted; films were pulled from release; Broadway plays discreetly dropped bits that might seem insensitive. By contrast, gallery shows opened pretty much as planned. Most art isn't amenable to last-minute editing. And the art world resists self-censorship, for good reason." The New York Times 09/25/01 (one-time registration required for access)

AN ARTISTIC RESPONSE: The New York Times asks nine creative artists to "share their thoughts on the future of their different fields" after September 11. "Artists, especially, whom we presume to be particularly sensitive to our dilemmas and our dreams, are peering apprehensively into the abyss of the future. What do they, and we who love the arts and believe they are important, see there? What is the role of the arts in the present crisis, and how will the arts change in response to the new circumstances in which we live? To judge from the nine creative artists we have asked in this issue to share their thoughts on the future of their different fields, a common feeling is one of helplessness, in that what we love and what they do seems so marginal to the crisis." The New York Times 09/23/01 (one-time reegistration required for access)

ART IN A TIME OF TROUBLE: A critic goes out to consume art and ask how others are using art as a way of dealing with terrorism. "It has been interesting, in this and other surveys, how many artists mention the role of classical music, ranging from Bach to Mahler, in helping them absorb these events. Very few cite either pop or modern classical music." Boston Globe 09/23/01

THEATRE IN A TIME OF TERROR: "My feeling is that at no time in our lives have we needed the theater more, and my hope is that the suffering theater community itself will take heart knowing how close it is to our own hearts. Can any of us imagine a world without theater? Only one of darkness. When the theaters went dark for two days last week, there was no choice. But the traumatized city seemed darker still. Theater has always been our eternal refuge, embrace, hope, solace and home." New York Observer 09/20/01

THEATRE OF TERROR: "How a new generation of theater artists will respond to the shattering events of that day remains to be seen. Because of the long process involved in getting a work from the page to the stage, the playwrights' response will not be immediately evident. However, artistic directors are already looking at their own programming - at shows that they had already announced, as well as plays from the repertoire of world drama - for work that will give refuge, illumination and inspiration to their audiences." Hartford Courant 09/23/01

THE DUTY OF THE WRITER IN TIME OF CRISIS: Is it irrelevant, in a time of tragedy and horror, to try to write a novel? Many writers - John Updike, Rosellen Brown, Tim O'Brien, Joan Didion, Ward Just, Robert Stone, and Joyce Carol Oates - have been asking themselves that question. "While many temporarily questioned their work, they ended up affirming to themselves the value and purpose of what they do." The New York Times 09/20/01 (one-time registration required for access)

SAYING THE WRONG THING: Composer Karlheinz Stockhausen said in a German radio interview Monday that last week's attacks on the World Trade Center were "the greatest work of art imaginable for the whole cosmos. Minds achieving something in an act that we couldn't even dream of in music, people rehearsing like mad for 10 years, preparing fanatically for a concert, and then dying, just imagine what happened there." The comments didn't play well; four concerts of his music that were to have formed the thematic focus of the Hamburg Music Festival this weekend were promptly canceled. Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung 09/19/01

SORRY FOR COMMENTS: Composer Karlheinz Stockhausen has apologized for comments he made comparing last week's attack on the World Trade Center to a work of art. The City of Hamburg canceled four concerts of his music this week. "Stockhausen told Hamburg officials he meant to compare the attacks to a production of the devil, Lucifer's work of art." Nando Times (AP) 09/19/01

THE DIFFICULT MR. STOCKHAUSEN: Did composer Karlheinz Stockhausen really tell a journalist that the attack on the World Trade Center towers was "the greatest work of art imaginable for the whole cosmos"? He says not and that he was misquoted. "Stockhausen the composer, and indeed the man, has always generated both horror and adulation. His total dedication to his work is admired and feared, his criticisms of almost every other musical genre (other than his own) are legendary, his demands that we throw away our attachments to 'the music of the past' seem like the strictures of a feared schoolmaster, and his grandiose spiritual pronouncements are often greeted with derision. And yet he is universally regarded, even by his opponents, as one of the key figures in contemporary music, and he is revered by a new generation of electronic pop and dance acts as a mentor." The Telegraph (UK) 09/29/01

  • DID HE MISS THE POINT, OR DID WE? "Stockhausen, in focusing on the formal and visual elements of the terrorist deathwork, forgot the idea that (as Bach indicated in all of his manuscripts) all art should be created for the greater glory of God — unless, of course, you have some perverted notion of what God is." Andante 09/30/01
  • HELP CREATE OR DESTROY IT? "Karlheinz Stockhausen is one of the great figures in modern composition, a revolutionary whose shadow stretches across contemporary music in all its incarnations. Along with such avant garde goliaths as Pierre Boulez and John Cage, he embodies the iconoclastic spirit that has torn away old certainties such as melody and fixed time-signatures, and recast the fundamentals of music in the 20th century." The Guardian (UK) 09/29/01

HOW TO PERFORM? "On stages across New York and in concert halls around the world over the last week it came down again and again to the same delicate question: under what circumstance was it appropriate for actors to act, dancers to dance and singers to sing? 'We tried to get through a rehearsal, which was next to impossible. You'd finish an entrance and run back to the television to watch what was happening'." The New York Times 09/20/01 (one-time registration required for access)

RESPONDING TO TERRORISM: Why haven't artists responded with more eloquence after last week's terrorism? "What we sorely needed was to hear from a composer, a poet, an artist who could, in an instant, release pent-up sentiments and illuminate the stricken landscape. Art, however, has lost the facility for rapid reaction or even considered response. What Picasso achieved in Guernica and Brecht in Mother Courage is no longer acceptable, or perhaps available, to painters and playwrights of the postmodern age." The Telegraph (UK) 09/19/01

FINDING YOUR OWN WAY: With all the special programs being put on by the world's musicians in remembrance of the victims of terrorism, we might well start to wonder what it is about music that soothes or inflames the soul. "Grief arises from external events that conspire to rob you of things profound and internal... With the exact nature and extent of the loss acknowledged, the process then becomes one of growing around that inner void, which can entail a slow but significant change of identity... How music works as a catalyst in this process is a highly personal matter." Andante 09/19/01

NEW YORK'S OUTSIDE(R) ART: Last week's World Trade Center tragedy "has already created, virtually overnight, a new category of outsider art: the astounding impromptu shrines and individual artworks that have proliferated along New York's streets and in its parks and squares. Alternating missing-person posters with candles, flowers, flags, drawings and messages of all kinds, these accumulations bring home the enormity of the tragedy in tangles of personal detail." The New York Times 09/19/01 (one-time registration required for access)

HOW ART SHOULD RESPOND: America's arts directors spent last week figuring out how to respond to the World Trade Center tragedy. "Many said in interviews that they had resumed normal schedules after closing their doors for just one night. They said theater, dance and music performances have suddenly taken on new importance, not just because of their content but also because they draw people to common experiences at a time when the nation's sense of community seems to have been savagely attacked." The New York Times 09/18/01 (one-time registration required for access)

  • CANCEL OR NOT? "Indeed, while many cancellations were made out of respect for victims and the rescue effort, more mundane concerns were also snagging plans, including the difficulty some performers faced obtaining visas because of closed consulates in foreign countries. Discussions of safety and sensitivity to depictions of violence have been going on in administrative offices of arts groups all over the city." The New York Times 09/18/01 (one-time registration required for access)

THAT BURNING IMAGE: What images will come to symbolize last week's World Trade Center disaster? There were too many pictures all at once. "Typically, words precede the creation of iconic images. A story is told, then a picture forms. What is an icon, after all, but art's equivalent of the word made flesh. But the word comes first. Icons illustrate existing faith and doctrine, which is often inchoate until the picture comes along and suddenly sorts out the disarray. Then, a gathering critical mass of people sees the image and collectively knows, 'That's it!' " Los Angeles Times 09/17/01

Arts Business

SMITHSONIAN HIT HARD: The world's most-visited musuem complex has been crippled by the September 11 events. "Some days Smithsonian-wide attendance has dropped almost three-quarters from the same day last year. For example, last Sunday only 22,000 people visited the Smithsonian's museums on the Mall, compared with 75,000 on the same Sunday a year ago." Washington Post 09/28/01

RETHINKING AFTER TERRORISM: What's a play, movie, book or recording to do after September 11's terrorism? "The self-scrutiny is unprecedented in scale, sweeping aside hundreds of millions of dollars in projects that may no longer seem appropriate. Like the calls to curb violence in popular entertainment after the 1999 shootings at Columbine High School in Colorado, the reaction may be helpful in the short term. But creators and producers are just beginning to grapple with more difficult, long-range questions of what the public will want once the initial shock from the terrorist attacks wears off." The New York Times 09/24/01 (one-time registration required for access)

WEST END WORRIES: As Broadway ticket sales tank, London's West End worries it too will find business dissolving. "In an average year, Americans and Canadians buy between 7 and 10 per cent of all West End seats, and overseas visitors account for about a third of the total. The concern in and around Shatfesbury Avenue is that, unlike during the Gulf War, when there was only a significant drop in the number of North American tourists, the West End’s continental and Australasian customers will also dwindle, as thousands cancel international flights." The Times (UK) 09/24/01

RETURNING TO ART: New York's museums were crowded late last week while the US was caught up in the WTC aftermath. "People are drifting back to museums, first because other people are there. We might still feel guilty about distracting ourselves, but we need to catch our breath sometimes and do what feels good, at least briefly, for the sake of sanity. Being in a museum together can feel safe and normal." The New York Times 09/17/01 (one-time registration required for access)

BOOK-BOUND: Fall is usually packed in the publishing business. But this fall will be different as publishers postpone releases. "Not just personally but professionally, everyone in the business has felt repercussions from Tuesday's mayhem. Nobody would dare complain at a time like this, but sales will probably suffer as readers focus on other things for a while - among them reading's old nemesis, television. Where people are finding time to buy and read books, nonfiction is predominating, as people struggle to learn more about how this could have happened." San Francisco Chronicle 09/17/01

THE POWER OF IMAGES: "As several columnists have noted, these attacks stem in part from a disgust with the modern world, with the huge and potentially crippling cultural impact our music, our mores and, inevitably, our movies are having on the traditional ways of life these people are committed to preserve at all costs. They see our films as infecting their world, changing their children's attitudes, in ways they find abhorrent. Given all that, what can be said for film in these terrible days?" Los Angeles Times 09/17/01

IN TIMES OF CRISIS: First we look to political leaders. Then to spiritual leaders. Eventually though, we turn to artists to "tell the stories of our collective experience". "We don't know how to save lives like a doctor would, or rescue people like a fireman would, but we do know how to reinvigorate the human spirit. That's our job." Hartford Courant 09/16/01

  • ARTISTS TALK ABOUT ART AND TERRORISM: Robert Brustein: "This is a time when art is most important because it complicates our thinking and prevents us from falling into melodramatic actions such as those we're about to take. But this is the time when art is made tongue-tied by authority and when it's a very small voice among hawkish screams. ... The greatest thing that art can do in a time of crisis is to make us aware, not to turn us into our enemies." Boston Globe 09/15/01

POWER OF ART: The arts aren't just events to be gone ahead with or cancelled after a tragedy. One of the powers of great art is to try to make sense of difficult things. Globe & Mail critics look at the power of artforms - Dance, Music, Visual art, Literature, Theatre - to help people cope with tragedy. Globe & Mail (Canada) 09/14/01

THE POWER OF ART TO COPE WITH GRIEF: "From Homer's tales of Troy to Picasso's Guernica, from Tchaikovksy's Pathétique to Bill T. Jones's Still/Here, from the bloody dramas of Sophocles and Shakespeare to Maya Lin's Vietnam Memorial, artists have always combated grave tragedy with grave beauty. Critics of The New York Times reflect on how art in all its forms has girded us to go on grieving and living." The New York Times 09/13/01 (one-time registration required for access)

THE APPROPRIATE MOMENT: There are many books about the World Trade Center or terrorism. "The question, with books that might be applicable to the recent situation, is whether you pull them forward. Which books should you delay, and which books might have an opportunity because of what happened. It's a question of finding the right and appropriate moment." Inside.com 09/13/01

Popular Culture

YES, VERY ROMANTIC. VERY COMEDIC. VERY APPROPRIATE: Pity poor CBS president Les Moonves. People are jumping all over him just because he said "his network is mulling a romantic comedy about two people who meet after their spouses are killed in the WTC destruction." That's not exploitive, he insists, adding, "You want relevance when appropriate." Boston Globe 10/16/01

WORKING TITLE - MURDER, SHE CHUCKLED: "The CBS network is considering a sitcom arising from the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks that killed more than 5,000 people. Leslie Moonves, the president of CBS Television, told the Los Angeles Times that the proposed series was drawn up before the attacks on New York and Washington, and in the aftermath of the bombings, the writer suggested that they 'heighten the stakes.'" National Post (Canada) 10/15/01

IRONY ALIVE AND KICKING: It took approximately 6.2 hours after the September 11 attacks for the first TV talking head to declare irony, satire, and humor to be dead forevermore. That the U.S. pundit corps would make such an outrageous assertion is not surprising - that so many people believed it is. But in the weeks since the attack, America's purveyors of laughter have shown themselves to be more valuable than ever. The New York Times 10/09/01 (one-time registration required for access)

"REALITY" NO MATCH FOR REALITY: Television's numbing parade of "reality programming" seems to be slowing. Ratings for most such shows are down. "In the face of such immense real-life loss and destruction, viewers may no longer be as interested in the petty bickering that’s become the hallmark of the genre." MSNBC 10/01/01

HELPING OR EXPLOITING? "Do movies distort our views of past events? Or do they do a service by arousing our curiosity to find out what really happened? At the moment, it's hard to imagine Hollywood making a movie based on the events of Sept. 11. But the industry track record shows it is merely a matter of time." The Christian Science Monitor 09/28/01

WHAT MOVIES DO: Do violent movies reflect society or influence it? A long-pondered question. "Apart from their profitability for producers, simplified treatments of disturbing topics give audiences a feeling of togetherness in a world that's sometimes too scattered and confusing for comfort. This can have a calming effect, but it can also promote negative attitudes of prejudice and xenophobia." Christian Science Monitor 09/26/01

NOT SO FUNNY: Comedians want to go on with their shows, but "find themselves having to strike a delicate balance between sympathy and satire, unfamiliar territory for both mainstream comics and for alternative comedians. Now, in dealing with an event far darker than any comic can recall, both camps are facing a whole new array of challenges, including many audiences with little patience for anything anti-American." The New York Times 09/26/01 (one-time registration required for access)

MEANING ON THE SCREEN: Director Wim Wenders on reality and fiction on the screen: "Of course cinema and reality are two different things. But the insight that what we saw was real does not change the phenomenology of the situation: We sit in front of the television and watch. To begin with, they are both just images. And for many people, the real dimensions became clear only after several days. At the beginning, the division between fiction and reality was extremely blurred." Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung 09/24/01

FOR THE LONG HAUL: What are the longer-term themes and impacts on the arts and entertainment world after September 11? "It's about the long haul: taste rather than appetite, reflection not reflex, 'before' and 'later' as well as 'now.' Even popular culture - that buzzing, blooming confusion that so beguilingly piles ephemera atop ephemera - has an inevitably cumulative existence." Boston Globe 09/23/01

TELLING THE TERROR STORY: "The story that has emerged is modelled, almost scene by scene, on a disaster movie. There's the clearly witnessed long shot of the attack, the confusion below, people fleeing toward the camera. Archetypal heroes (Mayor Rudolph Giuliani, the firemen) emerged, as well as a foreign villain (Osama bin Laden). The scene was set for the next act, the battle between good and evil, an apocalyptic yet redemptive process. How this cultural narrative has been chosen is worth examining." The Globe & Mail (Canada) 09/22/01

WHEN REALITY OVERTAKES FANTASY: "Overnight, the substance of threat and heroism is as altered as the New York skyline. Our willful confusion of fantasy with reality for purposes of our own entertainment abruptly shattered when American Airlines Flight 11 powered into the north tower of the World Trade Center. Our formula happy ending didn't come, and the ramifications in terms of our popular culture are complete." Hartford Courant 09/23/01

COMFORT(?) IN NOSTRADAMUS? "Within hours of the suicide missions that toppled the World Trade Center's twin towers in New York on Sept. 11, there was a rush in Toronto's libraries on a single book - not on the Qur'an, not on the Bible, not on any historical study of the ancient struggle between followers of Islam and Christ. The book everyone wanted contains the prophetic quatrains of 16th-century visionary Nostradamus, who, according to rumours burning up the Internet, had predicted the tragedy with stunning accuracy. The prediction was later disproved." Toronto Star 09/22/01

THE GREAT PREDICTER? "Nostradamus" was the top search word on the internet in the past week "Net surfers scoured the Web for information on the 16th-century soothsayer after a widely circulated e-mail hoax suggested he had predicted the tragedy. Top-ranked Nostradamus and other terms related to the terrorist attacks have been the most requested search items on the Web indexes Google, Lycos and Yahoo! over the past eight days." National Post (Daily News) 09/21/01

REALITY INTRUDES: "Now, as life begins to return to something approaching normal, Hollywood has a dilemma: Does it return to its traditional offerings of blood-and-guts movies while the country is still hurting? And another question: Will TV shows featuring terrorists and bomb threats still play? Complicating all this is the fact that business plain stinks for just about everyone in media these days." Businessweek 09/21/01

COMING OF AGE: One Hollywood producer suggests "This could be a coming of age for our nation. It depends on which way we go. I'd like to see us start looking at the process of recovery, and if entertainment has any job, it's to put this suffering in a kind of context and prepare people for what's next." Christian Science Monitor 09/21/01

HARD TARGET: "The Federal Bureau of Investigation notified the major film studios in Los Angeles yesterday that one of them could be the target of a terrorist bombing if the United States attacked Afghan targets." The New York Times 09/21/01

WHEN REALITY INTRUDES ON LAFF TRACKS: How will characters in tv sitcoms deal with the World Trade Center tragedy? "One option is to continue with a simulation of a New York City that no longer exists. The other is to move into some television version of the new New York City. Last week's tragedy seems too big, too powerful, too overwhelming for anyone – even TV characters – to escape." Dallas Morning News 09/20/01

COMFORT IN POP CULTURE: "It used to be the Bible that got quoted in moments of enormity—and to some extent it still is, as all the prayer vigils held last week attest. But these days even the Almighty bows before pop culture's clout. In an unfathomable event, we turn to entertainment, and from the inventory of its words and images, we assemble meaning. So it's understandable that the first response to what happened last week was to seek the shelter of a show. Many people who went through this trauma felt like they were in a movie, and those who saw it from a safe distance could imagine they were having the ultimate IMAX experience." Village Voice 09/19/01

HOW RADIO REACTS TO TRAGEDY: There are simply some common songs that aren't appropriate after something like the World Trade Center disaster. One of the most difficult things is to try and remember what the lyrics to songs are. The titles are fairly obvious, but it's knowing the sentiments too. You play something and halfway through it might tie in with particular things that have happened. They're a bit of a horror for us, lyrics." The Guardian (UK) 09/20/01

  • NO MUSIC BANS: Contrary to previous reports, says Clear Channel Communications — which operates 1,213 radio stations in the US — the company "never issued any directive about what stations could or should play. Instead, the list was developed from suggestions about potentially offensive songs that depicted graphic violence; referenced falling, explosions, or plane crashes; or seemed too celebratory of New York." USAToday 09/19/01

VIOLENCE SELLS: Are American movie-makers too good at producing violence on the screen? "We have to face the question of violence as our country's cultural touchstone. If it's not our native tongue heard in the movies that we send around the globe, then it's the language we speak most ardently. The graphic image of the White House exploding in Independence Day has a frightening quality, and in hindsight, since the Bush administration has said the White House was a target of the terrorists, perhaps suggested the way to unlock the door to our national nightmares — a horror-movie symbolism that shows the power of a grand gesture." The New York Times 09/18/01 (one-time registration required for access)

CUES FROM AMERICAN CULTURE: "Those who carried out the attacks on New York and the Pentagon were right up to date, not only in technical terms. Inspired by the pictorial logic of Western symbolism, they staged the massacre as a media spectacle, adhering in minute detail to scenarios from disaster movies. Such an intimate understanding of American civilization hardly testifies to an anachronistic mentality." Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung 09/18/01

SANITIZING THE CRISIS: Clear Channel Communications, one of the world's largest media companies, has circulated a memo to its radio stations across the U.S. "suggesting" the removal of some 150 songs from station playlists in the wake of last week's attack. Program directors have been left to wonder what could possibly be objectionable about the Beatles' "Obla-Di Obla-Da" or Louis Armstrong's "What A Wonderful World." St. Paul Pioneer Press 09/18/01

TORONTO FILM FESTIVAL PRIZE: The film Le Fabuleux destin d'Amélie Poulain, directed by Jean-Pierre Jeunet wins top prize at the Toronto Film Festival. "The final press conference - usually a sit-down brunch with much applause and laughter - was a conventional press conference, attended mostly by Canadians and a few stranded travellers, and felt less like a celebration than a funeral reception." The Globe & Mail (Canada) 09/17/01

  • TORONTO TROUBLE: Last week's terrorism deflated the Toronto Film Festival. With transportation down, "the result was massive trouble for the festival's guest office and for major hotels. Some festival guests couldn't get to Toronto; certain films had to be cancelled because prints did not arrive; and many festival guests who were already here found themselves unable to leave town." Toronto Star 09/17/01

AUDIENCES RETURN TO MOVIES: "Cinemas were relatively empty on Friday as many Americans watched events on television news, but on Saturday cinema audiences returned." BBC 09/17/01

THE UNCERTAIN DIFFERENCES BETWEEN ART AND LIFE: For the past three days, the script for reality came out of a Hollywood cataclysm movie. But, "The world is a more complex place, more like a John le Carre novel with shifting truths than a Hollywood movie of good guys and bad guys." And the people who anticipated reality with special effects are finding that their make-believe world too is changed forever. Boston Globe & BBC 09/13/01

LET THE BAD TIMES ROLL: The terrorist attacks have provoked some changes and delays in plans for violent movies and TV shows. But how long will that last? "Few producers, actors, or outside observers expect Hollywood to holler 'Cut!' In fact, some believe cinematic treatments of violent episodes such as terrorist attacks may actually increase." It needn't be that way, of course; it's possible to hope for "something that travels thoughtfully beyond the panoramic rubble, and obvious individual and collective pain, to greater universal truths that define us as a society." Boston Globe & Los Angeles Times 09/14/01

NETWORK DELAYS SEASON: NBC TV delays next week's scheduled debut of its fall TV season. Inside.com 09/12/01

  • TERRORISM SUDDENLY ISN'T SO ENTERTAINING: Hollywood wonders about postponing release of action movies and TV shows that feature terrorist stories. "Sony Pictures removed a trailer from theaters and the Internet for the adventure Spider-Man because of a scene in which a helicopter carrying fleeing robbers gets trapped in a giant spider web strung between the two towers of the World Trade Center." Nando Times (AP) 09/12/01

POINTS OF REFERENCE HARD TO COME BY AFTER ATTACK: Over and over on Tuesday, reporters and witnesses were forced to describe the chaos in New York following a horrific terrorist attack as being "like something out of a movie." CNN interviewed author Tom Clancy, and more than one witness cited the 1998 movie The Siege to describe what they were seeing. "The power of pop culture never seemed so real – or so terrifying." Dallas Morning News 09/12/01

SQUARING A TERRIFYING REALITY WITH THE TV NATION: "And what will TV and the movies do now with their storytelling? To take the most trivial example -- and yet so much of creative life will seem trivial for a long time to come -- how will the producers of Sex and the City or Law & Order create a fictive New York that in any way corresponds to the world that has just been overturned?" The Globe & Mail (Toronto) 09/12/01


ART BENEFIT: New York artists plan a big benefit for victims of September 11. "So far, plans call for a joint live auction held by Sotheby's, Phillips de Pury & Luxembourg, Doyle New York, Guernsey's, Swann and Leland that will take place in the afternoon at the premises of one of the auction houses in New York. In the evening, there will be a New York Thanks You concert at Carnegie Hall for the mayor and all the rescue workers involved in the post-attack effort." Forbes.com 09/26/01

BIGTIME DONATING: Friday night's Hollywood telethon broadcast on some 40 channels to raise money for disaster relief raised $150 million, organizers say. "The money will be distributed through the United Way with no administrative costs deducted, organizers said on Monday." Nando Times (AP) 09/25/01

ARTIST BENEFIT: Artists, auction houses, show promoters, galleries, dealers and museums throughout the country are being asked to become part of Art for America, a national day of fund-raising this fall. Art for America will culminate in a joint live auction in November. Proceeds of the event will benefit the Twin Towers Fund, the charity set up by Mayor Giuliani for the families of uniformed heroes missing in the blast. The fund already has received pledges of $72 million." New York Post 09/23/01

WILLING TO HELP: American celebrities are volunteering to help. "Not since World War II has the entertainment industry responded so swiftly, so vocally and so unanimously to a crisis, volunteering to raise money for families of the thousands who died on Sept. 11 or being willing to entertain troops to lift morale." The New York Times 09/24/01 (one-time registration required for access)

TELETHON BIGGER THAN SUPERBOWL: "An estimated 89 million viewers tuned in at some point to Friday night's America: A Tribute to Heroes. That is 7 million more than tuned in to Bush's address the night before and nearly 5 million more than watched the 2001 Super Bowl." Preliminary estimates of the money raised indicate $110 million was raised for disaster relief. Organizers got 300,000 calls in the show's first 15 minutes. Los Angeles Times 09/23/01

MUSIC-AID: Musicians are out raising money for disaster relief. "Michael Jackson, for example, hopes to rustle up more than $50-million for victims of the disaster through sales of What More Can I Give, a song he wrote six months ago for his album Invincible but didn't use. He wants to record the song with a Live-Aid-like supergroup to include Nick Carter of the Backstreet Boys and Mya from Destiny's Child, among others. Whitney Houston's label is rereleasing her Superbowl recording of The Star-Spangled Banner as a CD, with royalties to firefighters and police in New York." The Globe & Mail (Canada) 09/21/01

STAR CLUSTER: Tonight's two-hour A-list celebrity telethon to benefit the rebuilding and victims in New York is involving cooperation in the entertainment industry on an unprecedented scale. Dozens of stars are involved and "more than 31 cable channels, including FX, TNT, Discovery and BET, will air the program." Organizers hope to raise $30 million. Los Angeles Times 09/21/01

  • FROM A SECRET LOCATION: "We're not even disclosing where the show is going to be done. There will be no audience, no commercials, and no press. ... It's a very special thing, dedicated for a very special reason, and not to be commercialized." San Francisco Chronicle 09/21/01


TALIBAN AGAINST MUSIC: "The Ministry for the Prevention of Vice and Promotion of Virtue is on patrol. Its job is to eradicate sin, which, as defined by the totalitarian government of Afghanistan, includes simply listening to music. It insists that there is a hadith (a record of the Prophet's sayings) warning people not to listen to music lest molten lead be poured into their ears on Judgment Day. Until then, the Taliban police are wreaking their own violence—against musical instruments and anyone who dares enjoy their use." Time 10/01/01

A LAND NO LONGER THERE: "Written in 1977 by Nancy Hatch Dupree, An Historical Guide to Afghanistan is a painful read. The book evokes a country that has now completely vanished: of miniskirted schoolgirls cruising round Kabul; of fascinating Buddhist relics; and of donkeys plodding across the mountains loaded with the wine harvest. Most of the chapters are now redundant. The Taliban has pulverised the Kabul museum (chapter four) and dynamited the Bamiyan Buddhas ('one of man's most remarkable achievements', chapter seven)." The Guardian (UK) 09/29/01





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