The New York Times sponsors "Times Talks," a monthly debate, talk or intimate discussion and now Northern Michigan can "attend" as Michael Moore streams each of these live in the State Theatre in Traverse City. The "Times Talks" series takes place in the New York Times’ auditorium in their Times Square building. Here’s what Michael Moore shared about this exciting new feature at the State Theatre.

"Like the Metropolitan Opera, this is one more chance to bring the world to Traverse City in a way you’d never have dreamed possible ten or twenty years ago.

If you are a reader of the New York Times, you have probably noticed that each month the Times sponsors some cool events in the auditorium of their new Times Square building. Sometimes it’s a debate on one of the burning issues of the day, sometimes it’s a talk by a world leader or great thinker, and sometimes it’s an intimate discussion with one of our cultural icons. The series is called "Times Talks" and I can tell you from personal experience that it is one of the best things that living in New York City has to offer.

So now, thanks to our friends who beam the opera to us live from Lincoln Center, beginning this Thursday, May 20, 2010, at 8 pm, we at the State are going to fire up our special satellite dish and bring NYC to TC, beaming in live from Times Square the New York Times’ "Times Talks" series.

And just so you don’t think this is going to be some stuffy affair, we’re kicking it off with the masterminds behind TV’s hit series "Lost," Carlton Cuse and Damon Lindelof. They’ll talk about the challenges of crafting a finale that satisfies the storytellers and well as the show’s legion of fans, and give other insights into the making of this TV blockbuster.

If you want to attend, you can purchase your tickets online, call the box office at 231-947-3446, or come to the door on Thursday night.

Past events in this series have included talks with Stephen King, Jeff Bridges, Maya Angelou, Colin Firth, James McEvoy, Ben Stiller, Nancy Pelosi, Helen Mirren, Frank Langella, William Gibson, Larry David, James McGreevey and Robert Redford. Not too shabby. And now you don’t need to take the #1 train to Times Square—you just have to find a place to park on Front Street!

(Speaking of parking, I’ve been thinking more and more about that night a few weeks ago when I was in Times Square at the same moment this fellow from Connecticut parked his Nissan in front of "The Lion King" with a bomb inside it. But here’s what I can’t figure out: why "The Lion King?" It’s a good show! All I can come up with is that he must’ve been looking for "Aida," and so he kept circling the block looking for it—but, not being much of a theater aficionado, he didn’t know it had closed. So did he just decide that any old Elton John musical would do? What’s the world coming to when a suicide bomber forgets to stay in the car? Some things I don’t understand…)

Well, things are back to normal now—and tomorrow night (Thursday) we will kick off the New York Times "Times Talks" at the State Theatre. Showtime is 8 pm. Tickets are $12.50 for adults and $10 for members, seniors, students and children (they’re rating it PG-13).

Hope you can come!Michael Moore

Michael Moore’s Traverse City Film Festival is just around the corner. Watch video from last year’s fabulous event!