Last Build Date: Thu, 20 Apr 2017 00:00:00 -0400Copyright: PRI and WNYC
Thu, 20 Apr 2017 00:00:00 -0400
This week, Studio 360 gets obsessed about fandom: a look inside the world of black cosplayers at ComicCon, Kurt visits a Japanese pop culture paradise, and an atheist proselytizes “Jesus Christ Superstar.”Fan Overboard!
Thu, 13 Apr 2017 00:00:00 -0400
How a church hymn became an American anthem: the surprising and complicated story behind “Amazing Grace.” Plus, a conversation with novelist Yewande Omotoso about her book, “The Woman Next Door.” And Aimee Mann reveals her biggest influences and performs live in the studio.How Sweet the Sound
Thu, 06 Apr 2017 00:00:00 -0400
Disguised as a mild-mannered reporter, Kurt Andersen explores the history of Superman with cartoonists Jules Feiffer and Art Spiegelman, director Bryan Singer, novelists Michael Chabon and Howard Jacobson, and the 1978 Lois Lane, Margot Kidder. Is this strange visitor from the planet Krypton derivative of Jewish mythology? Can one superhero wield ultimate power for a moral good? And what’s up with the blue tights?
(Originally aired July 6, 2006)American Icons: Superman
Thu, 30 Mar 2017 00:00:00 -0400
This week, the story of “Shaft.” Plus, learn the lingo in a TV writers’ room with “Veep” showrunner David Mandel. And Kurt talks to author Osama Alomar about his collection of very short fiction, “The Teeth of the Comb & Other Stories.”“Shaft” and Present
Thu, 23 Mar 2017 00:00:00 -0400
This week, Kurt heads to a dog park and learns how to take the perfect pet portrait. Plus, the story behind “Share A Smile Becky,” Mattel’s attempt at creating a Barbie doll that used a wheelchair. And Carter Burwell, who scored the music for films by directors including Sidney Lumet and the Coen Brothers, defines the lexicon of film composers.Pet Projects
Thu, 16 Mar 2017 00:00:00 -0400
This week, Kurt talks to comedians Kate Berlant and John Early about their absurdist new series, “555.” Plus, how filmmaker Garry Fraser went from being a heroin addict in Scotland to working on “T2: Trainspotting” — a movie about heroin addicts in Scotland. And Stephin Merritt of The Magnetic Fields plays live in our studio.Magnetic Feels
Thu, 09 Mar 2017 00:00:00 -0500
The home of America’s aspirations and deepest contradictions.
Monticello is home renovation run amok. Thomas Jefferson was as passionate about building his house as he was about founding the United States; he designed Monticello to the fraction of an inch and never stopped changing it. Yet Monticello was also a plantation worked by slaves, some of them Jefferson’s own children. Today his white and black descendants still battle over who can be buried at Monticello. It was trashed by college students, saved by a Jewish family, and celebrated by FDR. With Stephen Colbert, filmmaker James Ivory, and artist Maira Kalman.
(Originally aired October 22, 2010)
Monticello plans to re-create or restore spaces where Thomas Jefferson's slaves worked and lived. This $35 million project includes the room where Sally Hemings likely lived, which was turned into a restroom in a 1940s renovation.
American Icons: Monticello was produced by Amanda Aronczyk. The Jefferson family graveyard story was produced by Ann Heppermann. The actor David Strathairn was the voice of Thomas Jefferson. David Krasnow edited the show.
Music was provided by David Prior, with John Matthias for Small Design Firm, and can also be heard at Monticello's interactive exhibition, Boisterous Sea of Liberty.
Thu, 02 Mar 2017 00:00:00 -0500
This week, Kurt talks to writer/director Jordan Peele about his new horror film “Get Out.” Plus, how Leonard Bernstein brought classical music from the concert hall to the living room. And Afropop band Sinkane performs live in our studio.Getting into 'Get Out'
Thu, 23 Feb 2017 00:00:00 -0500
This week, a look at artists — from the left to the right — getting political. Conservative painter Jon McNaughton talks about creating art in the era of the Trump administration. Plus, the Black Panthers' brief foray into the music business. And Philip Roth talks to Kurt about his eerily timely novel "The Plot Against America."Political Art
Thu, 16 Feb 2017 00:00:00 -0500
This week, we preview the Academy Awards. The casting director of “Moonlight” talks about the complicated process of finding the right actors for three different time periods. Plus, “La La Land” director Damien Chazelle guides Kurt through the classic Hollywood musicals that inspired his film. And the director of the Oscar-nominated “The Red Turtle” talks about making an animated Studio Ghibli movie unlike any other.
Thu, 09 Feb 2017 00:00:00 -0500
Where do you turn when you’re heartbroken in the dead of night? Delilah, of course — her radio call-in show pairs romantic advice with the perfect song. Plus, we discover the surprisingly sweet couple behind one of history’s naughtiest gag gifts: edible underwear. And Canadian songwriter Basia Bulat used a broken heart to propel her from subdued folk to floor-stomping pop.Love is on the Air
Thu, 02 Feb 2017 00:00:00 -0500
This week, Kurt talks to former NEA chairman Dana Gioia about how the Trump Administration may target federally-funded art. Plus, screenwriter Robert D. Siegel reveals how a real-life story becomes a Hollywood movie. And Karina Longworth and Noah Isenberg take a look back at the legacy of “Casablanca.”Here’s Looking at You
Thu, 26 Jan 2017 00:00:00 -0500
This week, a conversation with Oscar-winning editor Thelma Schoonmaker, the story behind Marilyn Monroe’s most iconic moment, and a New York Times critic picks the timeliest show on TV.The Scene and the Unseen
Thu, 19 Jan 2017 00:00:00 -0500
This is America’s dreamland.
It's been 78 years since movie audiences first watched “The Wizard of Oz.” Meet the original man behind the curtain, L. Frank Baum, who had all the vision of Walt Disney, but none of the business sense. Discover how “Oz” captivated the imaginations of Russians living under Soviet rule. Hear how playwright Neil LaBute, filmmaker Nora Ephron, novelist Salman Rushdie, and musician Bobby McFerrin all found magic, meaning, and inspiration in “Oz.”
(Originally aired: November 19, 2005)American Icons: The Wizard of Oz
Mon, 16 Jan 2017 06:00:00 -0500
Marilyn Monroe’s most iconic moment — standing over a subway grate as her white dress billows up — was originally filmed in Manhattan in 1954. But a crowd of onlookers forced the producers to reshoot the scene in a Hollywood sound stage, and footage from that night was thought to be lost forever. Until now. Bonnie Siegler, a graphic designer in New York, tells Kurt how she discovered the film — hidden in her grandfather’s house for over 60 years — that captured the moment that became synonymous with Marilyn Monroe.
Thu, 12 Jan 2017 00:00:00 -0500
Our inauguration special: A review of Barack Obama's arts legacy, how fashion goes from inside the beltway to the runway, and "Game Change" co-author John Heilemann talks about the cultural tastes of Donald Trump.POTUS as Tastemaker
Thu, 05 Jan 2017 00:00:00 -0500
This week, Kurt talks to Adam Driver, an architect tries to build a museum in Iraq, how Sly and the Family Stone created a pop music masterpiece, and Taylor Mac does a decade-by-decade revue of American pop.How to Remember
Sat, 31 Dec 2016 06:00:00 -0500
Jack Viertel is a human encyclopedia of musical theater. He’s the producer of hit Broadway shows like “Hairspray,” “Kinky Boots,” and “The Producers.” And he’s also the artistic director of Encores, a New York series that resurrects vintage musicals.
Viertel’s book “The Secret Life of the American Musical—How Broadway Shows are Built,” reveals the essential elements of a musical.
This spring, he joined Kurt in the studio to give us all a master class in the genre.
(Originally aired April 21, 2016)
More of Kurt’s favorite conversations of 2016 can be found here.Kurt's Favorite Conversation of 2016
Thu, 29 Dec 2016 00:00:00 -0500
From "Semi-Living Dolls" to glowing florescent illustrations, artists are using the tools of synthetic biology to grow their own materials and create works of art that are, essentially, alive. It’s one thing to wag our fingers at big scientific institutions for "playing God," but isn't it uncool to tell artists they shouldn't do something, even if it creeps us out?
(Originally aired May 28, 2015)Designing Life
Mon, 26 Dec 2016 06:00:00 -0500
The Man in the High Castle, the Emmy Award winning TV series, imagines a world in which the Nazi’s won WWII. Set in the 1960s, the show blends actual pop cultural imagery and artifacts with fictional interpretations of an alternative ending to the war.
When its first season debuted, the show’s ad campaign in New York City subways hit a little too close to home. And the show’s second season, which dropped last week, is resonating in a similar way, although this time not so intentionally, just as white nationalists gain exposure in the lead-up to the Trump presidency. “But if it would be hyperbole to treat the series like a documentary, it would be denial to say it plays no differently now than it did before,” says James Poniewozik the chief television critic for The New York Times. He joined Kurt in the studio to talk about his most recent article on the series which points to the parallels between fiction and reality.The Eerie Familiarity of "Man in the High Castle"
Thu, 22 Dec 2016 00:00:00 -0500
This week, Kurt creates a crossword with a New York Times puzzle-maker, a neuroscientist explains why so many people share the same false memory, and a theater company brings August Wilson back to his boyhood home.Get a Clue
Mon, 19 Dec 2016 06:00:00 -0500
Kurt Andersen’s version of a Christmas story doesn’t have your typical talking snowman or mistletoe. Instead, this holiday tale involves extraterrestrial surveillance and melting polar ice caps. "Human Intelligence," was produced for radio by Jonathan Mitchell, and stars Melanie Hoopes, John Ottavino, and Ed Herbstman. The unabridged version was published in "Stories: All New Tales," an anthology edited by Neil Gaiman and Al Sarrantonio.Human Intelligence: A Holiday Tale
Thu, 15 Dec 2016 00:00:00 -0500
This week, a stereophonic odyssey into the Amazon, the otherworldly nature of octopuses, and why a theater critic thinks Shakespeare is much ado about nothing.Close Encounters
Mon, 12 Dec 2016 06:00:00 -0500
Nothing takes the edge off the holidays quite like the soundtrack to “A Charlie Brown Christmas” by Vince Guaraldi. The jazz musician and composer always wanted to write a standard. And since the “Peanuts” holiday special first aired in 1965, its score has become one of the most recognizable jazz recordings of all time.
In 2012 “A Charlie Brown Christmas” was chosen for preservation in the Library of Congress’ National Recording Registry. Its story is told by Jean Schulz, the widow of “Peanuts” creator, Charles M. Schulz; Jerry Granelli, the drummer who played with Guaraldi; and Lee Mendelson, the producer who worked closely with Schulz on the Christmas special.
(Originally aired December 14, 2012)Vince Guaraldi: A Charlie Brown Christmas
Thu, 08 Dec 2016 00:00:00 -0500
This week, we celebrate the 100th anniversary of Albert Einstein’s theory of relativity: how Einstein upended the way we see space and time, his effect on pop culture, and how one of his most preposterous ideas was ultimately proven right.Way to Go, Einstein
Mon, 05 Dec 2016 06:00:00 -0500
If you take a trip to your local natural history museum, you’ll likely discover the story of our planet told through vast collections of species, vibrant dioramas and exhibits on the evolution of life on earth. But historically, these institutions have done a poor job of showing where humans have influenced “the natural world.” Some museums include the story of human impact on the environment — endangered and extinct species on display remind us of the dangers of hunting and deforestation — but humans have played an even more direct and intentional role in the evolution of certain organisms. And there’s a quirky museum in Pittsburgh that is finally telling that story.
Richard Pell is the director of the Center for PostNatural History. He defines post-natural organisms as ones that have been altered by people intentionally and heritably. “Heritably meaning we’ve altered its evolutionary path in some fashion. It affects its offspring, it’s not just a dog with a weird haircut. It’s we’ve bred dogs that have weird hair,” he said.
By including and preserving these often neglected species, the Center for PostNatural History interrogates the question of where what’s truly natural ends and what is influenced by humans begins.It’s Only Post-Natural
Thu, 01 Dec 2016 00:00:00 -0500
An hour about spoofs, parodies, and lampoonery. Mel Brooks and David Zucker talk about the art of mocking movies. Then, Edgar Wright, Simon Pegg and Nick Frost deconstruct action flicks. And a live, unplugged performance by "Weird Al" Yankovic.
(Segments in this episode have aired previously)And Don’t Call Me Shirley
Mon, 28 Nov 2016 06:00:00 -0500
Sharon Jones burst onto the music scene about 10 years ago — she was backed by The Dap-Kings, a straight-out-of-the-1960s funk band with a fantastic horn section. And at just 5 feet tall, Sharon had all of the funk and spark of James Brown. The band was made up of young hipsters, and while Jones was decades their senior, she’d dance circles around them onstage. She’d lead church choirs and had a day job as a prison guard, before finally breaking into the music business. Her swift rise was cut short by cancer — she died Nov. 18 at age 60.
We’d recently featured Sharon in a story about “This Land is Your Land” (she and the Dap-Kings did a terrific cover of the song). In it she explained how Woody Guthrie’s spoke to her in a surprising way. Today we’re releasing a special extended cut of her part of the story — plus her 2007 interview and performance in our studio.Sharon Jones's Soul Revival
Thu, 24 Nov 2016 00:00:00 -0500
On the 400th anniversary of William Shakespeare’s death, we look at the ways his work continues to change and adapt. In the 19th century, Shakespeare’s work got caught up in minstrel shows — and African-American actors are still struggling to claim the Bard as their own. Also, we find out how a father-son team is changing the way Shakespeare sounds by bringing back his original pronunciation. And we go inside the pioneering immersive theater experience “Sleep No More,” which might be the longest-running Shakespeare adaptation ever.
Segments in this show have aired previously.All Shakespeare All the Time
Mon, 21 Nov 2016 06:00:00 -0500
Leon Russell passed away last week — he was 74. During the 1970s, he forged a musical career unlike almost anyone else’s before or since: an ultra-American mix of country, blues, gospel, and rock n’ roll, collaborating with musicians from all those genres.
Kurt spoke with Russell in the summer of 2015 when a 40-year-old documentary about Russell’s musical career was finally released. Director Les Blank filmed Russell at the height of his stardom in the 70s, but Russell held the release of the film until after Blank’s death. “Les Blank is a wonderful documentarian, but I felt like it had a lot of coverage that didn’t have to do with me — you know, a lot of sunsets,” he explained.
Russell also told Kurt about how a childhood injury influenced his artistic development, the provenance of Mick Jagger’s famous dance, and his collaboration with Elton John.Remembering Ultra-American Musician Leon Russell
Thu, 17 Nov 2016 00:00:00 -0500
On this week’s show, novelist Brit Bennett reads from her debut novel, “The Mothers.” Plus, Josh Katz gives us a tour of American regionalisms. And Leonor Caraballo and Abou Farman create art in the face of the cancer.Y’all, Youse, or Yinz?
Mon, 14 Nov 2016 06:00:00 -0500
Twenty years ago this week, DJ Shadow set a Guinness World Record for creating an album made up entirely of samples, many of them from LPs he rescued from the 50-cent bin. But “Endtroducing” is also musically and compositionally inventive, and it caught the attention of the hip-hop world. DJ Shadow has moved on, but some of his fans (including Derek John) still haven't gotten over it.DJ Shadow’s Record-Breaking Album
Thu, 10 Nov 2016 00:00:00 -0500
This week: How a former reality TV star was elected president. Then, Pulitzer Prize winner Tracy K. Smith writes a poem inspired by a Baton Rouge protester. And we explore the creation of Woody Guthrie’s “This Land is Your Land.”This Land is Trump's Land
Mon, 07 Nov 2016 06:00:00 -0500
Nobody defined the satirical style of “Saturday Night Live” more than Jim Downey. He wrote for the show for over 33 seasons and was SNL’s head writer for 10 years. Downey gives us a behind-the-scenes look at how SNL crafted political sketches throughout the years — including dealing with reluctant politicians, his favorite jokes that were too risqué for the air, and how cast members like Daryl Hammond developed their pitch-perfect impressions.Live from New York, It’s Election Night!
Thu, 03 Nov 2016 00:00:00 -0400
On this week’s show, Eugenia Cheng whips up a delicious math lesson for Kurt. Plus, writer Sadie Stein defends one of the most detested words in the English language. Then, an art historian and a scientist explore the connection between bird plumage and air pollution. And Jacob Collier plays live with an instrument built by an MIT engineer.Eugenia Cheng, Guilty Pleasures & Jacob Collier
Mon, 31 Oct 2016 07:00:00 -0400
Jack Handey, thinker of Deep Thoughts, takes on the ultimate holiday question: If a skeleton’s not scary, what’s the point of having one? He offers a few tips on how to make your skeleton live up to its reputation so you’re not burying just another ho-hum pile of bones.
(Originally aired October 27, 2006)Spooky Scary Studio 360: How to Make Your Skeleton Scary
Thu, 27 Oct 2016 00:00:00 -0400
Spine-tingling tales from the Studio 360 crypt! “Evil Dead” director Sam Raimi talks about the horrors of Hollywood filmmaking. We audit Tom Savini’s course in decapitation and dismemberment. And the late, great Wes Craven revisits Elm Street and explains why “Scream,” is, ultimately, a family movie.Oh the Horror!
Wed, 26 Oct 2016 07:00:00 -0400
In anticipation of Halloween, Studio 360 is sharing some of our favorite spooky segments from our archive.
Photographer Michele Iversen captures strangers in private spaces — without their permission. At night she sits in her car and watches the glowing windows of strangers' homes, waiting for the perfect shot. Iversen’s story always elicits strong reactions from our listeners — often of horror.
(Originally aired December 17, 2010)Spooky Scary Studio 360: She Sees Your Every Move
Tue, 25 Oct 2016 07:00:00 -0400
In anticipation of Halloween, Studio 360 is sharing some of our favorite spooky segments from our archive.
Ike Sriskandarajah brings a story of how a composer’s visit to a haunted house made him realize there was a whole industry that needed better music. After visiting LA’s Haunted Hayride, Chris Thomas called the park’s hotline and said, “Hey, love your attraction, but it was undercut instantly by this terrible music.” A few weeks later, he got a call back — from the manager of the park. With that, Thomas composed what might be the first original score for any haunted attraction.
(Originally aired October 24, 2014)Spooky Scary Studio 360: Making Haunted Houses Scarier
Mon, 24 Oct 2016 07:00:00 -0400
In anticipation of Halloween, Studio 360 is sharing some of our favorite spooky segments from our archive.
No musician has died more often or more dramatically in front of more people than Alice Cooper. His highly theatrical rock shows have variously ended with depictions of him being electrocuted, beheaded, or hanged.
In real life, he's managed to survive very nicely — now in his 60's, he still performs those over-the-top live shows. He talks with Kurt Andersen about what it was like when he moved to Greenwich, Connecticut, eyeliner and all, and why he’ll probably never retire.
(Originally aired September 3, 2015)Spooky Scary Studio 360: Alice Cooper
Thu, 20 Oct 2016 00:00:00 -0400This is America's soapbox. Kurt Andersen looks into how the Lincoln Memorial became an American Icon. Sarah Vowell discusses the battle over Lincoln's memory, which lasted for three generations. Dorothy Height, a veteran of the Civil Rights Movement, recalls witnessing Marian Anderson’s historic concert there in 1939, and hearing Martin Luther King, Jr., declare “I have a dream” in 1963. And a former White House aide sets the record straight on Richard Nixon's infamous 4 am trip to the Lincoln Memorial, where he met with student protesters to denounce the Vietnam War. Actor David Strathairn reads the Gettysburg Address, which is engraved on the Memorial, for Studio 360. (Originally aired February 19, 2010) The Lincoln Memorial under construction. (Library of Congress) Sculptor Daniel Chester French at Chesterwood, his Massachusetts studio. (Library of Congress) Lincoln Memorial Dedication Ceremony - May 30, 1922. (Courtesy of Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War) Marian Anderson performs on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial on Easter Sunday in 1939 (Hulton Archive/Getty) The Lincoln Memorial at night. (Library of Congress, Prints and Photographs Division, Theodor Horydczak Collection) The Lincoln Memorial with cherry blossoms. (Library of Congress, Prints and Photographs Division, Theodor Horydczak Collection) The Lincoln Memorial (Terry Chambers/Getty ) [...]American Icons: The Lincoln Memorial
Mon, 17 Oct 2016 07:00:00 -0400
Brit Bennett came to prominence in a way that was unheard of in the literary world a generation ago. She published a piece about racial justice in Jezebel in 2014, and it provoked a huge discussion online and demonstrated what a fine writer she is.
Soon enough, she was hearing from literary agents and now she’s publishing her debut novel, “The Mothers.” She talks with Kurt Andersen about how attending different churches in her childhood informed the book, and why she started her novel by revealing its biggest secret.Brit Bennett on Church, Racism, and Her Novel “The Mothers”
Thu, 13 Oct 2016 00:00:00 -0400
We're always talking about creativity, but what do we mean? Can we find creativity, can we measure it, can we encourage it? Kurt talks with Gary Marcus, a psychology professor about what science tells us about creativity. A researcher puts jazz musicians into an fMRI machine and has them improvise; an intrepid reporter gets her creativity tested and scored; and a little girl introduces us to her imaginary friends (all of them).
(Originally aired: November 23, 2012)So You Think You're Creative?
Thu, 06 Oct 2016 00:00:00 -0400
Neuroscientist Eric Kandel explains how art affects the brain. Plus, we find out why Lou Reed’s “Walk on the Wild Side” is a work of non-fiction. And the indie duo Snowblink plays their dreamy music live in our studio.Eric Kandel, Snowblink, & “Walk on the Wild Side”
Thu, 29 Sep 2016 00:00:00 -0400
A special about the cozy relationship between politics and entertainment. Former "Spy" staffer and "New Yorker" editor Susan Morrison reveals the origin of Donald Trump’s “short-fingered vulgarian” nickname. Then, author Neal Gabler explains how Hollywood invaded the Oval Office. And Lawrence O’Donnell reviews his least favorite reality TV show: the 2016 presidential race.Hail to the Entertainer in Chief
Mon, 26 Sep 2016 07:00:00 -0400
Kurt co-founded "Spy" magazine in 1986 — and Donald Trump was a fixture from the very first issue. In this sneak peek of this week’s episode, Kurt talks with "Spy" co-conspirator (and current "New Yorker" magazine editor) Susan Morrison about their days skewering the “shuttle-owning dilettante” who would become the Republican presidential nominee. They trace the history of the nickname “short-fingered vulgarian” from its conception in the offices of "Spy" to its appearance in the 2016 presidential race. “We had empirical evidence that it upset Trump,” Susan recalls. “He would circle pictures of his hands in gold Sharpie and send them to us.”
Listen to the full episode — all about the cozy relationship between show business and American politics — this Thursday.360 Preview: The Short-Fingered Vulgarian
Thu, 22 Sep 2016 00:00:00 -0400
There are so many ways the world could go wrong — electing the wrong candidate is only one of them. Charlie Brooker, creator of the hit sci-fi show “Black Mirror,” gets his dystopian ideas from our digital devices. Then, novelist Gary Shteyngart reads from his darkly funny book about the near-future, “Super Sad True Love Story.” And Janelle Monáe plays songs from the 28th century.Dystopias
Tue, 20 Sep 2016 18:29:00 -0400
Edward Albee died last week, at 88. His most famous play, “Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf,” marked his Broadway debut and won Albee his first Tony Award. It’s a searing play about the toxic love we share with family — and the secrets we don’t share. Those themes would define Albee’s work for decades.
Back in 2004, Studio 360 sent reporter Sarah Lemanczyk to interview Albee about his decision, well into his 70s, to tinker with his very first produced play, “The Zoo Story.” Albee was about to debut a new first act as a sort of prequel to the original play. Lemanczyk was a huge fan of Albee’s, but she was appalled at this idea — and she had the audacity to tell Albee to his face.
(Originally aired: June 5, 2004)360 Extra: So Long, Edward Albee
Thu, 15 Sep 2016 00:00:00 -0400
On this week’s show, the art and science of singing. At the age of 92, Broadway lyricist Sheldon Harnick hasn’t lost any of the wit and insight that helped him write “Fiddler on the Roof.” Also, we find out what cutting-edge medical science can do to save the voices of aging singers. And indie singer-songwriter Angel Olsen plays live in our studio.Angel Olsen, Sheldon Harnick, & The Science of Singing
Sun, 11 Sep 2016 09:00:00 -0400
On the 15th anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks, we wanted to revisit Kurt’s conversation with an artist who had a special relationship with the World Trade Center site.
It had all the glamour, conspiracy, and danger of a classic heist movie, but it was real — and the hero was wearing slippers. In the early hours of August 7, 1974, 24-year-old Philippe Petit and some friends snuck to the top of the Twin Towers and rigged a 140-foot steel cable between them. And then, 1,350 feet above the ground and without a net, Petit walked, danced, and even lay down on the wire between them. The feat transfixed the world. It later became the subject of the 2009 Oscar-winning documentary “Man on Wire.”
Back in 2008, Kurt visited the site of the walk (at that point, Ground Zero) with Petit and director James Marsh. “I was a young wire-walker busy conquering an idea.” Petit explains, “I never thought of the consequences.”
(Originally aired: July 25, 2008)
Correction: In the audio for this segment, Kurt misstated the title of Steve Reich's composition reflecting on the September 11th terrorist attacks. It is "WTC 9/11" (not "WTC View," which is the name of play by Brian Sloan.)
Video: Philippe Petit walks between the Twin Towers (from "Man On Wire")
360 Extra: Philippe Petit, Man on Wire