The Fort Worth cultural world plans to weigh in and be counted when it comes to marking one of the most fateful days in Texas’ – and the country’s – history: Namely the 50th anniversary of the assassination of President John F. Kennedy in Dallas on November 22, 1963.
So, not one. Not two. But three different iconic Fort Worth cultural institutions have assembled various exhibitions and performances to commemorate, in their individual way, that dark day in the nation’s history.
The Amon Carter Museum of American Art is already up and running with its Hotel Texas: An Art Exhibition for the President and Mrs. John F. Kennedy. This very special exhibition reproduces the exceptional installation of fine art works, many loaned from private collections, and arranged in President Kennedy’s hotel suite at Fort Worth’s Hotel Texas. The original display of paintings was curated and organized by none other than the late, and stately, Amon Carter Museum president, Ruth Carter Stevenson, in tandem with a small group of local art lovers. Included in the collection for the Kennedys were hand-picked lustrous works by Claude Monet, Vincent van Gogh, Marsden Hartley, Franz Kline, and Thomas Eakins, along with sculptures by Pablo Picasso and Henry Moore. In addition to the art on display, the exhibition will also offer up rare related materials including videos, photographs, and archival accounts and images of how the hotel suite appeared just before the Kennedys’ arrival.
Hotel Texas: An Art Exhibition for the President and Mrs. John F. Kennedy runs through January, 12, 2014 at the Amon Carter Museum of American Art, 3501 Camp Bowie Blvd., Fort Worth. 817-989-5065; www.cartermuseum.org.
Casa Manana will present the regional premiere of Oswald: The Actual Interrogation. The brand new play, written by Dennis Richard, revolves around the crucial 48-hours that Lee Harvey Oswald was held in custody by the Dallas Police Department immediately following the assassination of President John F. Kennedy. The play has the ring of truth as it is based largely on the actual notes culled from the real interrogation of Oswald by Dallas police captain, Will Fritz. The tension in the work stems from Oswald pleading his innocence, despite a cascade of evidence building against him.
Oswald: The Actual Interrogation will run at Casa Manana from November 9-17. Casa Manana is at 3101 West Lancaster Ave., Fort Worth. Tickets: $41-$76. More info: 817-332-2272; www.casamanana.org.
Fort Worth Opera presents: JFK: Libretto Reading and Storytelling. The Fort Worth Opera, to honor the 50th anniversary of Kennedy’s assassination, will present a rare “first look” at what is an ambitious, freshly commissioned opera to premiere in 2016. With a working title of JFK, the Fort Worth Opera is planning a glittering evening of drinks and hors d’oeuvres, to take place in the Hilton Hotel (formerly the historic Hotel Texas) where JFK’s main artistic creative forces, David T. Little and Royce Vavrek, will offer windows of insight into their work. In addition, the Opera will also present a special reading of a few select parts of the opera’s near-finished libretto.
JFK: Libretto Reading and Storytelling, presented by the Fort Worth Opera, November 21 from 6:30-8:00 p.m. at the Hilton Hotel, downtown Fort Worth. Tickets: $50. More information: 817-288-1215; email@example.com.
[Photo: Image: President Kennedy speaks to the crowd outside the Hotel Texas in Fort Worth, Texas, November 22, 1963, William Allen, photographer/Dallas Times Herald Collection, courtesy of The Sixth Floor Museum at Dealey Plaza.]