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New Opera Tells Story of Sept. 11 Heroism

A continent away from where the towers fell, the horror of that September morning 10 years ago is being recreated on the stage of the War Memorial Opera House.

The attack on the World Trade Center comes in the climactic scene of "Heart of a Soldier," an earnest and at times compelling work that was given its world premiere by the San Francisco Opera on Saturday night.

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'Cirque De Legume:' Animal-Vegetable-Maniac Circus

Flouting the age-old parental refrain, "Don't play with your food!" comes a zany Irish production called "Cirque de Legume" which is all about playing with food. Specifically, with root vegetables.

The chewing, spewing and other abuse of leafy produce has been raised to an art form by the hilarious, deliberately awkward duo performing "Cirque de Legume," which opened Sunday night off-Broadway at 59E59 Theaters as part of the yearlong 2011 Imagine Ireland festival. It's an animal-vegetable-maniac circus, laden with slapstick and humor at the expense of a basket of vegetables.

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SpongeBob in Hot Water from Study of 4-Year-Olds

The cartoon character SpongeBob SquarePants is in hot water from a study suggesting that watching just nine minutes of that program can cause short-term attention and learning problems in 4-year-olds.

The problems were seen in a study of 60 children randomly assigned to either watch "SpongeBob," or the slower-paced PBS cartoon "Caillou" or assigned to draw pictures. Immediately after these nine-minute assignments, the kids took mental function tests; those who had watched "SpongeBob" did measurably worse than the others.

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New Book Shows Another Side to Jackie Kennedy

It's a side of Jacqueline Kennedy only friends and family knew.

Funny and inquisitive, canny and cutting. In "Jacqueline Kennedy: Historic Conversations on Life with John F. Kennedy," the former first lady was not yet the jet setting celebrity of the late 1960s or the literary editor of the 1970s and '80s. But she was also nothing like the soft-spoken fashion icon of the three previous years. She was in her mid-30s, recently widowed, but dry-eyed and determined to set down her thoughts for history.

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Case of Stolen Rembrandt Intrigues Art World

On the surface it looked like an open-and-shut case: A pair of thieves drop by an art exhibition at the Ritz-Carlton in Los Angeles and, while one distracts a curator, the other snatches a valuable, centuries-old Rembrandt drawing and bolts with it.

Apparently finding the small pen-and-ink work by the Dutch master too hot to fence, the thieves had second thoughts. They abandoned it, undamaged, at a church on the other side of town.

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Mel Gibson plans to produce film on Jewish hero

Mel Gibson, who reportedly made anti-Semitic remarks during a drunken driving arrest five years ago, is now producing a film about the life of Jewish hero Judah Maccabee.

Gibson's publicist, Alan Nierob, told The Associated Press Friday that Gibson is working on a deal with Warner Bros. to develop the film through his company, Icon Productions. Nierob said the studio also would like Gibson to direct, but Gibson will decide whether he wants to do that once a script is finished.

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Diverse Web series grows through social media

After growing tired of watching stereotypes of people of color on U.S. television screens, Issa Rae created her own vision of reality with "The Mis-Adventures of Awkward Black Girl."

The Web-based show follows J, played by Rae, and her mishaps and successes in work and love.

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NY Arts World Commemorates Sept. 11 in Music, Film

"Boy, this is a great city," says Woody Allen, lounging on a park bench that overlooks Manhattan's East River and the 59th Street Bridge. "I don't care what anybody says. It's really a knockout, you know?"

The scene comes from Allen's 1979 film "Manhattan," an enduring, romantic portrait of the director's hometown, "a town that existed in black and white and pulsated to the great tunes of George Gershwin."

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Bob Dylan Art Exhibition Coming to NYC

A New York City gallery will be exhibiting 18 drawings and paintings by Bob Dylan created while the musician was touring Asia.

The Gagosian Gallery says Dylan's Asia Series will run from Sept. 20 to Oct. 22.

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Winehouse's Dad Says He Thinks Seizure Killed Her

Amy Winehouse's father says he believes she died after suffering a seizure related to alcohol detoxification and "there was nobody there to rescue her."

The soul diva, who had fought drug and alcohol problems for years, was found dead in bed at her London home on July 23. Her family says toxicology reports indicated there was alcohol in her bloodstream but it was unclear whether this had contributed to her death at age 27.

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