WBGO Playdate

WBGO's Playdate: After 9/11, America The Beautiful

The Carnegie Hall Jazz Band made one album on Blue Note Records.

By Becca Pulliam

On October 22, 1992, Bill Clinton was challenging President George H. W. Bush. The election was less than two weeks away. And the Carnegie Hall Jazz Band presented its first concert. 

The Clinton era had ended by November 1, 2001. New York City was struggling after the 9/11 attacks. And the Carnegie Hall Jazz Band offered this reading of "America The Beautiful" as a prelude to a night of Latin Jazz. 

Announcement of the band's elimination (using a word from New York Times coverage) came two months later. The story says, "Like other cultural institutions, Carnegie Hall has been affected by a drop-off in ticket sales after the Sept. 11 attacks, a reduction of 5 percent over all compared to last year." 
An additional explanation was that the commissioning of arrangements had become expensive. And finally, Zankel Hall (below ground, replacing the Carnegie Hall Cinema) was almost finished, with 650 seats rather than 2,800 in the main Isaac Stern Hall. The beautiful Zankel has become the jazz venue at Carnegie Hall.
I would love to see the CHJB live in Zankel!


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Support comes from the National Endowment for the Arts, New Jersey State Council on the Arts and WBGO.

Playdate funders

Produced for WBGO by Alexander Ariff,
with Becca Pulliam and Duke Markos, Executive Producer Josh Jackson.

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