Performing arts center opens at 9/11 Ground Zero in New York

A ceremony has taken place to mark the completion of a performing arts complex at the site of the Twin Towers of the World Trade Center in New York, which were destroyed in terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001.

The ceremony on Wednesday at the Perelman Performing Arts Center brought together families of 9/11 victims, the theater's artistic director and Michael Bloomberg, who became mayor of New York City several months after the tragedy.

Two decades ago, Bloomberg set his sights on building a theater at the Ground Zero site in the belief that New York needed the power of the arts.

On Wednesday, he offered his condolences for the nearly 3,000 victims who perished in the attacks, saying "the arts would not only help bring new life to this site, but help us to build a brighter future for Lower Manhattan and our whole city."

Dances, gospel anthems and scenes from musicals were performed at the ceremony, drawing enthusiastic applause.

The center is located north of the National September 11 Memorial & Museum, where the names of all the victims who died in the 9/11 attacks are inscribed.

The main theater spaces can transform into 10 different proportions with various stage-audience arrangements, and have capacities ranging from 90 to 950 seats.

The theater, dubbed PAC NYC, is set to host its first performance on September 19. Concerts, musicals, operas and plays will be staged there.