The Strand in New Orleans
Paul Maassen head of local BBC partner station WWNO tells us the city is back. Five years ago with the breach of levee walls, floods across the city and the destruction of lives and business, New Orleans culture looked like it might not recover. But talking in the revitalised Louis Armstrong Park, Paul Maassen runs through the evidence for recovery: America's highly-rated HBO TV drama Treme is set in the city, the local team won the Superbowl, many musicians are back and federal dollars are pouring in.
Lolis Eric Elie is a New Orleans-based writer on the TV show Treme. He tells us the little-known history of the real-life Treme neighbourhood - the birthplace of jazz in America. Treme was also a neighbourhood where free men of colour created a French-language newspaper urging social reform over one hundred years before America's Civil Rights movement of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
Andy Antippas owns the contemporary art gallery Barrister's in the Mid-City/Bywater area of New Orleans. Discussing the art scene in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, he describes the West African influences on the city's art scene. He sees the influence everywhere: from the creation of found-object art to the traditions of the Yoruba people.
Finally in our first programme from New Orleans Mark talks backstage to legendary local musician Allen Toussaint after a performance at this year's Jazz Fest. Toussaint describes how New Orleans is 'moseying back' after Hurricane Katrina and discusses how the destruction that followed has helped spread the music of the city worldwide.