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Thursday Morning Roundup
by Stephen Becker 30 Jun 2011

Today in the roundup: New money to promote tourism (and maybe the arts) in Dallas, T Bone Burnett’s next major project and making art out of fire.


PROMOTING DALLAS: When you stay in a hotel in Dallas, you’re taxed 15 percent. Of that, 2 percent has been going to pay for the American Airlines Center – a tax that will expire this year. So an idea is gaining momentum that says the city should keep the overall tax at 15 percent and use that newly freed up 2 percent to promote Dallas tourism – a plan supported in a dallasnews.com editorial today: “Dallas doesn’t have a Golden Gate Bridge, a sandy coastline or any of the other iconic attractions associated with the nation’s top tourist spots. Nonetheless, we are a centrally located city with convenient airports, shopping, diverse eateries, sports and arts — all factors that have helped make North Texas the state’s largest tourist draw.” Sounds like the Arts District might soon get more of a marketing push to those outside the area. On the other hand, the idea that the tax might go to help support all the city’s cultural centers isn’t even mentioned.

THE DYNAMIC DUO: The movie adaptation of The Hunger Games is turning into a hotly anticipated franchise. EW has already had Jennifer Lawrence on its cover in character, and the movie doesn’t even come out until March 23 of next year. Whether it will be any good is anyone’s guess, but you can be confident that it will sound good. That’s because the music is being done by Fort Worth’s T Bone Burnett and Danny Elfman – maybe the two biggest names going in the movie music biz.

RED HOT ART: This last item doesn’t have anything to do with North Texas, but it was too cool to pass up. The Combustion Art Competition Awards were recently held by the Combustion Institute. And it’s exactly what it sounds like – pyromaniacs setting stuff on fire and taking artsy pictures of it. Check out the winners at newscientist.com.