The year 1997 will quite obviously be THE year for Titanic. A plethora of television--one perfectly appalling docu-fantasy on CBS as well as a rebroadcast of an A & E documentary--led off the parade this past fall, together with some books, both fiction and non-fiction. (Beryl Bainbridge’s Every Man for Himself, published by Carroll & Graf, has done the unpardonable, decorating its cover with a broadside of the the Olympic.)

Coming up later this year will be a Broadway musical as well as a huge, multi-million-dollar filmed epic; a simulacrum Titanic, full size, has been erected as a giant film set on the beach at Rosarito Beach, just south of the Mexican U.S. border.

On the subject of the musical Titanic, the Ocean Liner Museum is organizing a theater party for the night of 14 April, 1997, 85th anniversary of the actual night of the collision, four days after the show opens. (Interesting that the producers have chosen the date of the vessel’s Southampton departure for their opening night.). The plan is for those participating to assemble on the evening of April 14th for dinner at the Becco Restaurant at 355 West 46th Street, a theatrical district eatery within easy walking distance of the Lunt-Fontanne Theater, also on West 46th Street. For those who wish it, an after-theater bus will take members back to midtown.

Prices for the evening are as follows: For dinner, theater ticket and a Museum donation, $250 per person, preferred location; regular orchestra seating, $175 per person; without dinner, $125 per person. The Board of Trustees hopes that members who are interested and able will join the party to share in Titanic's musical debut. Invitations will be in the mail shortly but in the interim, SAVE THE DATE.

On page 3 of the Arts and Leisure section of the Sunday New York Times for September 29th, a full-page advertisement unleashed news of the new musical.We wish the musical Titanic better luck than the prototype but we also wish that those who worked up the text for the advertisement had consulted the Ocean Liner Museum before going to press. Herewith their text of choice:

It was a cold, clear, moonless night.The stars shone like diamonds off the black, still Atlantic. Rich and famous bundled their topcoats over evening clothes to enjoy the slap of frigid air sweeping the Promenade Deck. Inside the Grand Salon, crystal chandeliers bathed dancers in a golden glow as the band played on, and in the First Class Club Room, millionaires warmed to card games and cognac, swathed in the smoke of expensive cigars. Below, on the Second and Third Class Decks, most had retired for the night, lulled to sleep by the gentle heaving of the engines, as the largest, greatest ship on earth cut its record-breaking path westward through the sea. It was late, almost midnight, when one lone lookout saw the ice.

What madness is this? Was Danielle Steele their historical consultant? In the interests of accuracy, your Editor proposes a little New Year’s competition. Readers so inclined should vet the above paragraph for Gross Errors; your Editor believes there may be as many as seven. Gazette readers are invited to submit a list of their candidates. The earliest post-marked, winning entry will be awarded a modest prize.


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