JTS and UTS Present Our Better Angels: Religious Leaders Commemorate the 10th Anniversary of 9/11

Press Contact: Eve Glasberg
Office: (212) 678-8089
Email: evglasberg@jtsa.edu

May 9, 2011, New York, NY

Beginning on May 30 and continuing through June 13, The Jewish Theological Seminary (JTS) and Union Theological Seminary (UTS) will present Our Better Angels, a series of three public forums to be held at St. Paul’s Chapel of Trinity Church, Wall Street (209 Broadway at Fulton Street), intended to change the tenor of public conversation about the 10th anniversary of 9/11. Each forum will feature dynamic interactions among Jewish, Christian, and Muslim leaders as they discuss the resources within their traditions for dealing with trauma, mourning, and healing, followed by a meditative musical offering by world-class musicians. Each evening will feature the following religious leaders:
  • The Reverend Dr. Serene Jones, president of the Faculty and Roosevelt Professor of Systematic Theology at Union Theological Seminary. Professor Jones’s most recent book is Trauma and Grace: Theology in a Ruptured World.
  • Dr. Ingrid Mattson, immediate past-president of the Islamic Society of North America and professor of Islam at Hartford Seminary. Professor Mattson’s most recent book is The Story of the Quran: Its History and Place in Muslim Life.
  • Rabbi Dr. Burton L. Visotzky, Appleman Professor of Midrash and Interreligious Studies and director of the Louis Finkelstein Institute for Religious and Social Studies of The Jewish Theological Seminary. Professor Visotzky’s most recent book is Sage Tales: Wisdom and Wonder from the Rabbis of the Talmud.

The programming for the sessions is as follows:

Monday, May 30, 6:30 p.m.: TRAGEDY in Jewish, Christian, and Muslim Traditions. Musical performance of Triptych by Robert Sirota (originally commissioned for the first anniversary of 9/11) by the Chiara String Quartet. (Rebecca Fischer and Julie Hye-Yung Yoon, violins; Jonah Sirota, viola; and Gregory Beaver, cello, have established this quartet as one of America’s most respected ensembles, lauded for its "highly virtuosic, edge-of-the-seat playing," according to The Boston Globe. For more information, visit: www.chiaraquartet.net or www.robertsirota.com.)

Monday, June 6, 6:30 p.m.: MOURNING in Jewish, Christian, and Muslim Traditions. Musical performance of Bach’s English Suite by pianist Simone Dinnerstein, from her new CD, Bach: A Strange Beauty. (Ms. Dinnerstein, a Brooklyn native, has been praised by TIME for the “arresting freshness and subtlety” of her playing. She gained an international following after the remarkable success of her recording of Bach’s Goldberg Variations, which ranked No. 1 on the Billboard Classical Chart upon its release. For more information, visit: www.simonedinnerstein.com.)

Monday, June 13, 6:30 p.m.: HEALING in Jewish, Christian, and Muslim Traditions. Musical performance of Bach’s Sonata #2 in D Major for Harpsichord and Cello by harpsichordist Kenneth Cooper and cellist Fred Zlotkin. (Also a pianist, musicologist, and conductor, Mr. Cooper is a leading specialist in 18th-century music and one of America’s most exciting and versatile performers; he is on the faculty at Columbia University and the Manhattan School of Music. Highlights of Mr. Zlotkin’s long, distinguished career include solo engagements with l'Orchestre de la Suisse Romande and the National Symphony Orchestra, guest artist stints with the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, and, for more than 30 years, solo cellist for the New York City Ballet at Lincoln Center.)

The program is free and open to the public, but seating is limited; reservations are required for each session. To register, or for additional information, call (917) 310-4923 or email OurBetterAngels911@gmail.com. Please arrive at least 15 minutes early to allow sufficient time for registration, and have photo ID available.

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