It's Friday. Time to empty the A&E notebook:
* With all the talk of the 50th anniversary of John F. Kennedy's assassination, little attention is being focused on his influence on the arts. The Los Angeles Times, however, chimes in with an appreciation. "Despite an unprecedented explosion of the arts in America over the last half-century," writes music critic Mark Swed, "artists have never again been afforded such national prominence." Read the whole piece here.
* Producers announced that "Spider-Man: Turn Back the Dark" will close on Broadway. I won't be mourning. Flash back to my review here.
* I'm no fan of stores being open on Thanksgiving. But, in fairness, should the complainers also be venting about movie theaters being open? Turkey Day is one of the biggest of the year for moviegoing. Shouldn't we have as much sympathy for ushers and popcorn scoopers as we do for mall workers?
* If you happen to be an internationally travelling musician, I've got good news: Your hand-held instruments no longer have to be declared at customs in Europe. Details here.
* On Dec. 6, interested folks can go online to vote on which ten of 20 semi-finalist artists will have their work biggie-sized and featured on Clear Channel billboards around the city. The artists are not being paid for the use of their work, which is fine if you see this as free publicity for them. Others, however, may see it as yet another example of artists being asked to offer up their work for free. Check in after the 6th at www.indyarts.org.