This is post No. 23,231 on the ArtsBeat blog. And it is the last one.
But don’t fret, faithful readers! None of the content that appeared here is being lost. Links will persist, and past posts should be easily found through search. The Times’s online culture coverage will still be delivered on our website and to mobile devices and apps. Although posts will no longer be published on ArtsBeat, our critics, reporters and editors will continue to deliver our signature reviews, news and features for digital readers at nytimes.com/arts. And the Arts, Briefly column will continue in print.
ArtsBeat came to life on April 27, 2007, when The Times was still based on West 43rd Street, and our digital publishing systems were less nimble than they have become. It was a more innocent time: before the debut of “Mad Men,” the arrival of Lady Gaga and the first performances of “Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark” on Broadway. Beyoncé and Jay Z had not yet married, much less taken over the cultural world.
In those nine years, the features that made the blog such an appealing alternative to our traditional publishing tools — agility, the ability to embed digital content and a chance to use a livelier voice — have largely been absorbed into the rest of our work. But before shutting off the lights, we wanted to highlight a few of the neat things that happened here.
It was on ArtsBeat that we solicited reader questions for Big Bird, Barbra Streisand and the “Game of Thrones” showrunners.
We covered literary pie-throwing, how the creators of “Avenue Q” dealt with the death of Gary Coleman, and that one time Wiz Khalifa was arrested for refusing to get off of a hoverboard.
Cumulatively, our writers and editors spent several days live-blogging any number of awards shows.
And we regularly sought response from readers, whose contributions yielded much delight, like a collection of limericks dedicated to the basketball player Jeremy Lin, who was having a breakout season in New York. Or these 92 works of art inspired by President Obama.
But the way we heard most often from readers was in the comments, where a number of regulars made the place feel familiar and welcoming. (We also heard from some of the people we cover there, like David Simon and Lin-Manuel Miranda.)
But we thought we’d give the last word here to one of the regulars, Fred Landau, who has submitted almost 4,000 comments over the years under the name Freddie. Hundreds of those contributions were in lyrical form, set to the tune of a Broadway or pop song. Mr. Miranda has also had kind words for Freddie’s work:
@RandiBop @jbf1755 Freddie the NYTimes commenter is a local treasure.
— Lin-Manuel Miranda (@Lin_Manuel) 24 Nov 15
So with a tip of the hat, here’s Mr. Landau’s farewell number, “Ballad of the ArtsBeat Blog,” set to the tune of “The Ballad of Sweeney Todd” (original music and lyrics by Stephen Sondheim):
Attend the ending ArtsBeat blog
We’d followed here like a loyal dog
Adept at getting its interviews,
The first with the gossip, the first with the news.
Its fleetness had us all agog
The ArtsBeat blog –
The leading source on the street! Chorus: (Tweet!)
We’re reading here the blog is gone
We’d loved their tales told with great élan
The online kvetchers can go to hell
‘Cause no one did culture news nearly as well
The ArtsBeat blog
The leading source on the beat! (Tweet!)
Say it’s not goodbye, ArtsBeat
Say it isn’t so,
If you don’t share the news you know!
What grossed the most at the B.O.?
Where will the brand new Lloyd Webber go?
Domingo might do a Parsifal?
Will Banksy be taken off that Brooklyn wall?
Will “Game of Thrones” put out some grog?
That ArtsBeat blog
Was always there with each deet. (Sweet!)
So eclectic that ArtsBeat was
So electric at getting buzz
Getting the word, getting it fast
Is there dissent with a star in the cast?
ArtsBeat blogged on the Holy Pope
ArtsBeat blogged on Ms. Leanne Cope
Jeremy Lin! Lin-Miranda!
Look at the take for “Kung Fu Panda”!
(ArtsBeat! ArtsBeat! ArtsBeat! ArtsBeat! Yeahhhhhhh!)
Attend the end of the ArtsBeat blog
We’d check it out on our morning jog
We’d check in several times a day
And change is O.K. but we just want to say:
The ArtsBeat blog!
The leading source on the street!” (Tweet!)