GIFTS FROM THE UNDERGROUND

It’s the rare transportation project that stirs as much controversy as Athens’ new subway. Building was stalled for 35 years due to fears of harming the monuments above ground and the artifacts below. Now more than 10,000 objects have been uncovered during the dig and are on permanent display. “The shotgun marriage between archaeologists and builders has produced a wonderful new vision of how ancient Athenians lived and died.” – New York Times

WHERE ART BEGINS (OR ENDS?)

A “snapshot” exhibition of art from around the year 1900 gives us the good, the bad and the ugly. Was it the beginning of an era? The end? What does it tell us about aesthetic debates then? What does it tell us about today’s? “Much of this exhibition’s ‘new evidence’ turns out to be just bad art. As presented, ‘1900’ is neither ‘twilight or ‘dawn’, but a grey haze that obscures distinguishing marks.” – The Idler

CARNEGIE HALL CHIEF QUITS

Carnegie Hall’s top administrator, buffeted by the recent resignations of four senior staff and the general unhappiness of the Hall’s workers, suddenly resigned Tuesday. He’ll move to a similar position with the Berlin Philharmonic in his native Germany. – Nando Times (AP)

ROUGH TIME: “His tenure there was stormy, partly because of what critics called an autocratic management style, but yesterday he denied that problems at Carnegie Hall led him to leave.” – New York Times

UNFULLFILLED POTENTIAL? “Mr. Ohnesorg probably didn’t have enough time to implement what, as far as I understood, were very exciting ideas. The Berlin Philharmonic is very lucky to get him.” – Washington Post

KICKING THE FRANCHISE

The Three Tenors’ concerts have long since become boilerplate gigs for the rich and fatuous, scripted down to the last medley-encore. Booming amplification makes their voices hover over the orchestra like surreal, singing whales; they could just as well be up there lip-synching to their recordings, and, one suspects, the fans would be just as happy. – Chicago Tribune

NATIONAL JAZZ MUSEUM FOR HARLEM

The US Congress has approved a $1 million matching grant to construct a New York-based jazz museum. But “competition in fund-raising with other jazz institutions seems inevitable. Last May, for example, the Jazz at Lincoln Center organization announced plans for a $103 million home at Columbus Circle that is to include a Jazz Hall of Fame along with performance and rehearsal spaces and a classroom.”  – New York Times