Two Lower Manhattan landmarks, one old, one quite new, are stalwart survivors of the attacks of September 11. Because of their distinctive characters, they are especially appealing surroundings for performances.
Trinity Church, one of the nation’s finest examples of Gothic Revival architecture, went up in 1846 beneath a steeple that long guided ships toward New York Harbor. In the aftermath of the September 11, 2001 attacks on the neighboring World Trade Center, the church filled with dust and grime, and debris fell into the adjoining, centuries-old churchyard, but Trinity was for the most part unscathed. The graceful sanctuary is especially welcoming during the classical and contemporary performances of Concerts at One, staged some weekday afternoons for the benefit of lunching Wall Streeters. The church’s acclaimed choir also sings regularly, and the Trinity bell-ringers make themselves heard at the tickertape parades that traditionally march down Lower Broadway to honor heroes.
The Winter Garden (pictured above), a glass- roofed piazza at the center of the riverside World Financial Center, was all but destroyed in the 9/11 attacks. Glass panels were shattered, and a forest of palm trees was choked in ash and cinders. The expanse of marble and glass has been rebuilt and replanted, and once again the palm-filled space stages free afternoon and evening performances, from jazz concerts to ballets to screenings of silent films accompanied by live music.