Culture Shock 1913: Program Information

Tuesday, November 13, 2012 - 12:38 PM

“1913 is the moment where Modernism really comes into the open.  This is where it all bubbles to the surface, and the great public adventure of 20th century music and art really begins.” – Alex Ross, New Yorker music critic

Click into this post for more information about Culture Shock 1913...

Air Information:

12/31 - 8 pm FM

1/1 - 2 pm FM

1/6 - 9 pm FM


The entire special program is also available streaming here, and as a podcast.


The one-hour special program Culture Shock 1913 visits that landmark year in global culture. It was a year in which Modernism asserted itself as never before: 


  • *The Rite of Spring had its legendary premiere in Paris. Audiences were shocked by its primitive dance steps and rhythms, and dissonant harmonies
  • *The Armory Show brought “Modern Art” from Europe to America, and shocked viewers by presenting unrecognizable, Cubist images to the US for the first time
  • *The Skandalkonzert of atonal music in Vienna, conducted by Arnold Schoenberg, was stopped abruptly by police and other authorities after audiences members protested loudly and began to make their way to the stage


Culture Shock 1913 goes back in time to look at the earliest years of the 20th Century, and the rapid changes in science, technology and thinking that brought about a sense of uncertainty and disorientation not unlike our own.

With commentary by New Yorker writers Alex Ross and Joan Acocella; Writer and USC Music/Journalism Professor Tim Page; pianist Jeremy Denk; Nobel Laureate, neuropsychiatrist Dr. Eric Kandel; authors Frederic Morton and Philipp Blom; Museum of Modern Art Chief Curator of Painting and Sculpture Ann Temkin; Kimberly Orcutt (Curator of American Arts, working on The Armory Show at 100 at New-York Historical Society); conductor and educator Leon Botstein and others.



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Comments [9]

Roz Rosenbluth

Can I buy the audio of Culture Shock? Fascinating program! Best, Roz

Dec. 29 2013 04:34 PM
Julia Prospero from Manhattan

Sera, good piece! As usual! Thumbs up.

Good to hear what Ethan has to contribute to this awesome anniversary.

Ther are a lot of old footage of the original ballet, and recreations, as well, all worth watching.

Jun. 11 2013 07:59 AM

@Peter Winkler from East Setauket , NY - That recording of The Rite was conducted by Valery Gergiev. Here's the recording information:

Igor Stravinsky, "The Rite of Spring," Kirov Orchestra under Valery Gergiev, Philips Classics 2001.

We'll be posting more information on the music used in the program soon.

Jan. 02 2013 11:11 AM
Lola Ferris from Old Bethpage, NY

I was glad to see that you alerted everyone to Sara Fishko's Culture Shock program.I listened to it this morning and found the story she told about the Armory Show very exciting. She also described how the new art paralleled Stravinsky's music and Gertrude Stein's poetry. It was truly a shocking era,and according to some museum patrons I've been talking to, the shock hasn't worn off yet for many of them.

Dec. 30 2012 02:03 PM
Peter Winkler from East Setauket , NY

Great show! Do you have a playlist of the recorded performances you used? The recording of "Sacre du Printemps" was particularly exciting. Loved those trombone glisses

Dec. 30 2012 12:06 PM

@markam keith adams from montclair, nj
Thanks for your comment. Perhaps you might want to listen again to hear Ann Temkin and Dr. Eric Kandel talk on the new direction taken by art after photography was born. As for Muybridge and Marey, sadly, they did fall to the cutting room floor after the first assembly ran many minutes over. We were broken up about it, too

Dec. 28 2012 04:28 PM
markam keith adams from montclair, nj

Sara's presentation on this subject is fascinating and offers up a great many compelling points regarding the evolution of modern art and the arts in general in the early part of the 20th century. I was very disappointed however, that Sara did not acknowledge the significant influence photography and more specifically, the work of Edward Muybridge and Etienne Jules Marey had on the art and artists from this period. Both Muybridge and Marey were recognized as pioneers of motion pictures, stop motion photography, and human and animal locomotion studies at the turn of the 20th century. Marcel Duchamp in particular, was directly nfluenced by the work of Muybridge and Marey as illustrated in his seminal painting, Nude Descending a Staircase No. 2. Sara's assertion that Duchamp's painting rocked the art world, is accurate, but no mention was given to the ground breaking work in photography at the time and in the 20 years prior. Duchamp's painting was arguably related to Muybridge's series of photographs entitled Nude Descending a Staircase (1887), hence is is #2. In addition, Duchamp's 1912 painting bears a significant resemblance to Marey's human locomotion studies conducted in the 1880's. Sara's blatant omission of even a reference to the important work of these photographers, let alone photography itself at the turn of the 20th century, is inexcusable. She referenced significant work in music and painting and writing, seemingly oblivious to the fact that photography caused a monumental shift in the arts at its outset in the mid 19th century, and was very influential the the Cubists, Fruturists, Constructivists and beyond. She neglected to even acknowledge that cinema and motion pictures would not have existed without photography and the work of Muybridge and Marey, let alone countless other photographers. I expect Sara and NPR to do all the necessary research before presenting a piece as sweeping as Culture Shock 1913 seems to be. Leaving out photography and its importance, especially at this point in history, leaves a huge void in an otherwise excellent program. Let' get it together folks!

Dec. 07 2012 07:14 PM

The entire hour will be streaming on our website -, and will also be available as a podcast.

Nov. 28 2012 12:29 PM
sylvia liska from Vienna, Austria

How can I buy hear listen to the entire hour of culture shock 1913? after December 6th
Thank you for the information,
sylvia Liska

Nov. 26 2012 04:39 PM

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