NYC Events,”Only the Best” (06/23) + GallerySpecialExhibits: Chelsea

Today’s Super 7 NYC Events > FRIDAY/JUNE 23, 2017

“We search the internet everyday looking for the very best of What’s Happening, primarily on Manhattan’s WestSide, so that you don’t have to.” We make it as easy as 1-2-3.
For future NYC Events be sure to check the tab above: “Notable NYC Events-June”

Have time for only one NYC Event today? Do this:

L.A. Dance Project
Joyce Theater, 175 8th Ave/ 8PM, $56-$81
“Benjamin Millepied, who turns forty this week, was an early star at the School of American Ballet and the New York City Ballet. He choreographed and danced in the notorious Black Swan, then married his screen colleague Natalie Portman. He founded this distinguished repertory troupe in Los Angeles in 2012, went off to a thorny three-year stint as director of the Paris Opera Ballet, and is now back in California, from whence he brings two programs of promising work. The first, opening Tuesday, June 13, includes Ohad Naharin’s Yag and two of Millepied’s own dances, the 2014 Hearts & Arrows and the world premiere of In Silence We Speak. The second bill, playing in repertory starting Wednesday, June 14, reprises Silence and features Justin Peck’s Murder Ballades, a MinEvent by Merce Cunningham, and Millepied’s Orpheus Highway.” (Elizabeth Zimmer, VillageVoice)

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6 OTHER TOP NYC EVENTS TODAY (see below for full listing)
>>The Mountain Goats
>>CHRIS POTTER QUARTET
>>54 Below Sings Broadway’s Greatest Hits! 
>>PHAROAH SANDERS
>>Swedish Midsummer Festival
>>Man’s Separation from Nature and Where to Go From Here

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Music, Dance, Performing Arts

The Mountain Goats (also Saturday)
Beacon Theater / 8PM, $40-$60
Beloved first for his lo-fi boombox recordings of wry, passionate, literature-inflected acoustic songs, John Darnielle has in the last ten years embraced the studio for his full-band recordings as the Mountain Goats. The title of their sixteenth album, Goths, released this May, should not surprise longtime fans: Darnielle has always identified with and championed misunderstood outsiders. He channels this particular subculture through unexpected dulcet tones of vibraphone, brushed drums, and piano. But, weirdly, it works, and the real beauty is as always in the simultaneously heartfelt and nimble lyrics, which tell detail-rich stories of wise, wayward youth. On record these newer studio tracks can come off as dad-rock, but they invariably shine live. The band rocks really hard without losing their jazzlike sense of rhythm, and Darnielle veers between stand-up-esque stage banter and terrifyingly passionate singing. A tour supporting Goths’s tender humor and wacky instrumentation offer a new way to feel the spirit.” (Zoë Beery, VillageVoice)

CHRIS POTTER QUARTET (June 20-25)
at the Village Vanguard / 8:30, +10:30PM, $30 (he’s good, may need to try the late show)
“Mr. Potter is a hyper-articulate tenor saxophonist and bass clarinetist, subject to all the attendant triumphs and pitfalls. His most recent album, “The Dreamer Is the Dream,” came out this year on ECM Records, and it has the markers of an ECM release: clarity to match the stoutness of its sound; an unfixed sense of time and motion; a broad harmonic palette that guides the improvisations. The sound suits him. There’s a sense of pacing and depth to everything on the album, and it hardly ever sags. He’s joined by the quartet from “The Dreamer”: David Virelles on piano, Joe Martin on bass and Marcus Gilmore on drums.” (GIOVANNI RUSSONELLO-NYT)

54 Below Sings Broadway’s Greatest Hits!
Feinstein’s/54 Below / 9:30PM, $35+
“Broadway by the Year impresario Scott Siegel curates this monthly concert series, in which Broadway stars sing some of the Great White Way’s best-loved tunes. Performers at the June 23 edition include Jeremy Kushnier, Douglas Ladnier, Brian Charles Rooney and Fun Home’s Beth Malone.” (TONY)

Elsewhere, but this looks worth the detour.

PHAROAH SANDERS
at Prospect Park Bandshell / 7:30PM, FREE
“Mr. Sanders, 76, played with John Coltrane near the end of his life, seeming to inherit Coltrane’s affinity for global folk musics, Eastern spirituality and caterwauling expressionism. In his own music, Mr. Sanders renders long and scorching solos over lovely vamps, balancing fury and enlightenment. (Fans of Kamasi Washington, take note: Mr. Sanders was doing it first.) Mr. Sanders draws much inspiration from Indian classical music, so the intrepid Brooklyn Raga Massive is an apt opener for Friday’s concert.” (NYT-GIOVANNI RUSSONELLO)

Smart Stuff / Other NYC Events
(Lectures, Discussions, Book Talks, Literary Readings, Classes, Food & Drink, Other)

Swedish Midsummer Festival
Robert F. Wagner Park / 5PM, FREE
“For 20 years, Battery Park has hosted one of the world’s largest Scandinavian summer solstice celebrations outside of Sweden, with more than 3,000 guests showing up to dance around the midsummer pole. If roaring rounds of folk dancing and pro fiddling wipe you out, grab a spiced herring crêpe from Crepes du Nord or malt balls from Fika, and chill out on the grass. For the perfect keepsake, you can even make your own ceremonial flower wreath.” (TONY)

Man’s Separation from Nature and Where to Go From Here
The Strand, 828 Broadway / 7PM, $20, includes complimentary beer and wine
“Head through the concrete jungle of Manhattan to Man’s Separation from Nature and Where to Go from Here, an event with philosopher Manuel Rodeiro on our unsustainable relationship with nature.” (ThoughtGallery.org)

and don’t forget this continuing event, an eclectic extravaganza that is an annual highlight in Lower Manhattan –  the very lowest WestSide of Manhattan:

River To River Festival (June 14–25)
The 16th annual River To River Festival will have over 100+ performances — with 12 days of dance, music, theater and the visual arts activities. The festival will take place across 31 unique sites across Lower Manhattan and Governors Island.

“From City Hall Park to the Financial District to South Street Seaport to Governors Island, the Medici-like Lower Manhattan Cultural Council deploys some of our most interesting dance artists, including the Dance Cartel, Netta Yerushalmy, Faye Driscoll, Marjani Forté-Saunders, Beth Gill, Maria Hassabi, Jodi Melnick, and Will Rawls. If I had to choose, I’d definitely catch Melnick’s Moat (June 17–18 at Fort Jay), and the long-awaited, The Set Up: Island Ghost Sleep Princess Time Story Show (June 18–19 and 24–25 at Governors Island), a six-year collaboration among Wally Cardona, Jennifer Lacey, and multiple international collaborators, all masters of French or Asian dance traditions. Consider taking a week of vacation days so you can wallow in all this talent. Events are free, though some require advance reservations at the website, which offers full descriptions and schedules.” (Elizabeth Zimmer, VillageVoice)

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Bonus NYC events– Jazz Venues:
Many consider NYCity the Jazz capital of the world. Here are my favorite Jazz clubs, all on Manhattan’s WestSide. Check out who is playing tonight:

Greenwich Village:
(5 are underground, classic jazz joints. all 6 are within walking distance of each other):
Village Vanguard – UG, 178 7th Ave. South, villagevanguard.com, 212-255-4037
Blue Note – 131 W3rd St. nr 6th ave. bluenotejazz.com, 212-475-8592
55 Bar – basement @55 Christopher St. nr 7th ave.S. 55bar.com, 212-929-9883
Mezzrow – basement @ 163 W10th St. nr 7th Ave. mezzrow.com,646-476-4346
Smalls – basement @ 183 W10th St. smallslive.com, 646-476-4346
Cornelia Street Cafe – UG, 29 Cornelia St. corneliastreetcafe.com, 212-989-9319

Outside Greenwich Village:
Dizzy’s Club – Broadway @ 60th St. — jazz.org/dizzys / 212-258-9595
Birdland – 315 W44th St.(btw 8/9ave) — birdlandjazz.com / 212-581-3080
Smoke Jazz Club – 2751 Broadway nr.106th St. — smokejazz.com / 212-864-6662

Special Mention:
Caffe Vivaldi – 32 Jones St. nr Bleecker St. — caffevivaldi.com / 212-691-7538
a classic, old jazz club in the Village, Caffe V often surprises with a wonderfully eclectic lineup. It’s my favorite spot for an evening of listening enjoyment and discovery.

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♦ Before making final plans, we suggest you call the venue to confirm ticket availability, dates and times, as schedules are subject to change.
♦ NYCity, with a population of  8.5 million, had a record 60 million visitors last year and was TripAdvisor’s Traveler’s Choice Top U.S. Destination for 2017.  Quality shows draw crowds.
Try to reserve seats for these top NYC events in advance, even if just on day of performance.
NYCity Vacation Travel Guide Video (Expedia):

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Chelsea Art Gallery District*

Chelsea is the heart of the NYCity contemporary art scene. Home to more than 300 art galleries, the Rubin Museum, the Joyce Theater and The Kitchen performance spaces, there is no place like it anywhere in the world. Come here to browse free exhibitions by world-renowned artists and those unknowns waiting to be discovered in an art district that is concentrated between West 18th and West 27th Streets, and 10th and 11th Avenues. Afterwards stop in the Chelsea Market, stroll on the High Line, or rest up at one of the many cafes and bars and discuss the fine art.

Here is one exhibition the New Yorker really likes:

Alex Katz (thru June 30)
Taylor 16×34, 515 W19th St. Chelsea
“As a student at Cooper Union, in 1946, Katz was struggling in drawing class, so he started sketching people wherever he went. The pocket-size results, exhibited here together for the first time, are an illuminating example of the contest between an aspiring artist’s attempt to capture every detail of what he’s seeing and the confident ease with which, as a mature painter, Katz came to encapsulate faces and gestures. In one drawing, a pair of women and a pair of men sit kibbitzing on benches in Union Square; Katz captures all four physiognomies and expressions—from a querulous, sharp-nosed woman to a sympathetic, shovel-chinned man—with vigilant specificity.” (NewYorker)

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For a listing of 25 essential galleries in the Chelsea Art Gallery District, organized by street, which enables you to create your own Chelsea Art Gallery crawl, see the Chelsea Gallery Guide (nycgo.com) Or check out TONY magazine’s list of the “Best Chelsea Galleries” and click through to see what’s on view.

*Now plan your own gallery crawl, but better to plan your visits for Tuesday through Saturday; most galleries are closed Sunday and Monday.

TIP: After your gallery tour, stop in Ovest at 513W27th St. for Aperitivo Italiano (Happy Hour on steroids). Discuss all the great art you have viewed over a drink and a very tasty selection of FREE appetizers (M-F, 5-8pm). OR try the NYT recommendation: “When you’re done, adjourn to the newly renovated Bottino , the Chelsea art world’s unofficial canteen on 10th Avenue (btw 24/25 St.) “

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For other selected Museum and Gallery Special Exhibitions see recent posts in right sidebar dated 06/21 and 06/19.

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NYC Events,”Only the Best” (06/22) + Today’s Featured Pub (WestVillage)

Today’s Sweet 6  NYC Events > THURSDAY/JUNE 22, 2017

“We search the internet everyday looking for the very best of What’s Happening, primarily on Manhattan’s WestSide, so that you don’t have to.” We make it as easy as 1-2-3.
For future NYC Events be sure to check the tab above: “Notable NYC Events-June”

Have time for only one NYC Event today? Do this:

CHRIS POTTER QUARTET (June 20-25)
at the Village Vanguard / 8:30, +10:30PM, $30 (he’s good, may need to try the late show)
“Mr. Potter is a hyper-articulate tenor saxophonist and bass clarinetist, subject to all the attendant triumphs and pitfalls. His most recent album, “The Dreamer Is the Dream,” came out this year on ECM Records, and it has the markers of an ECM release: clarity to match the stoutness of its sound; an unfixed sense of time and motion; a broad harmonic palette that guides the improvisations. The sound suits him. There’s a sense of pacing and depth to everything on the album, and it hardly ever sags. He’s joined by the quartet from “The Dreamer”: David Virelles on piano, Joe Martin on bass and Marcus Gilmore on drums.” (GIOVANNI RUSSONELLO-NYT)

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5 OTHER TOP NYC EVENTS TODAY (see below for full listing)
>>JASON ISBELL AND THE 400 UNIT
>>Onegin
>>Jazztopad Festival: Wójciński / Szmańda Quartet and STRYJO
>>Brian Stokes Mitchell: Plays with Music
>>“The Pride of the Yankees” with Richard Sandomir
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Music, Dance, Performing Arts

JASON ISBELL AND THE 400 UNIT (June 22-24)
at Beacon Theater / 8PM, $40+
“The Alabama musician Jason Isbell spent several years as a central member of the Southern rock band Drive-By Truckers before going solo in 2007. His album “Something More Than Free” was highly praised by critics in 2015 for its detailed stories of Southern life; next week Mr. Isbell and his backing band, the 400 Unit, will celebrate his latest release, “The Nashville Sound.” (SIMON VOZICK-LEVINSON-NYT)

Onegin (Jun 19 – 24)
American Ballet Theatre (through July 8)
@ Metropolitan Opera House / 2PM +7:30PM, $22+
“Pushkin’s great verse novel, Eugene Onegin, is interpreted with flawless storytelling skill by John Cranko. With a wealth of magical moments, this compelling tale features an unusual twist of double unrequited love—while the high-handed Onegin at first spurns the young, naive Tatiana, she blooms to become a sophisticated St. Petersburg aristocrat who, in turn, rejects his subsequent advances in a final crushing blow. Tchaikovsky’s vivid music brings to life the world of Imperial Russia with beauty, drama and passion.”

Jazztopad Festival: Wójciński / Szmańda Quartet and STRYJO
Presented in partnership with the Polish Cultural Institute
Dizzy’s Club / 7:30PM, +9:30PM, $35
“The annual Jazztopad Festival at Dizzy’s Club Coca-Cola is a must-see showcase for anyone interested in the world of jazz and improvised music. This year, each set will be split between two groups: the Wójciński / Szmańda Quartet and STRYJO. The two groups are quite different, but they compliment one another beautifully.

The Wójciński / Szmańda Quartet features the three Wójciński brothers – each of them a current mainstay in the Polish jazz scene – on trumpet, piano, and bass, plus Krzysztof Szmańda on drums.

STRYJO is a trio that, on paper, probably sounds like it’s for a niche audience, but that’s absolutely not the case. STRYJO performs 100% improvised songs (including themes, rhythms, structure, etc.) that sound neither “free” nor overly simplistic. Groove seems to be a priority here, and STRYJO’s embrace of easily identifiable rhythmic foundations makes their music immediately accessible and allows them to dazzle with the details.”

Brian Stokes Mitchell: Plays with Music (thru June 24)
Feinstein’s/54 Below / 7PM, $100
“Superlative or not, there aren’t many adjectives that fit Brian Stokes Mitchell as well as “unparalleled.” Last starring on Broadway in 2016’s SHUFFLE ALONG, the two-time Tony winner and member of the Theatre Hall of Fame has cemented himself as one of the greatest leading men on Broadway, and his rich, deep baritone is a force all its own. This week, alongside long-time collaborator Tedd Firth, he makes his Feinstein’s/54 Below solo debut, sampling songs from his upcoming album, PLAYS WITH MUSIC, an eclectic collection of showtunes, folk songs, and more.” (Ashley Steves, BroadwayWorld)

Smart Stuff / Other NYC Events
(Lectures, Discussions, Book Talks, Literary Readings, Classes, Food & Drink, Other)

“The Pride of the Yankees” with Richard Sandomir
Bergino Baseball Clubhouse, 67 E. 11th St./ 7PM, FREE
The untold story behind the first great sports film.
On July 4, 1939, baseball great Lou Gehrig stood in Yankee Stadium and gave a speech that contained the phrase that would become legendary: “I consider myself the luckiest man on the face of the earth.”

He died two years later and his fiery widow, Eleanor, wanted nothing more than to keep his memory alive. With her forceful will, she and the irascible producer Samuel Goldwyn quickly agreed to make a film based on Gehrig’s life, “The Pride of the Yankees.” Goldwyn didn’t understand — or care about — baseball. For him this film was the emotional story of a quiet, modest hero who married a spirited woman who was the love of his life, and, after a storied career, gave a short speech that transformed his legacy. With the world at war and soldiers dying on foreign soil, it was the kind of movie America needed.

Using original scripts, letters, memos, and other rare documents, Richard Sandomir tells the behind-the-scenes story of how a classic was born. The search to find the actor to play Gehrig; the stunning revelations Eleanor made to the scriptwriter Paul Gallico about her life with Lou; the intensive training Gary Cooper underwent to learn how to catch, throw, and hit a baseball for the first time.”

and don’t forget this continuing event, an eclectic extravaganza that is an annual highlight in Lower Manhattan –  the very lowest WestSide of Manhattan:

River To River Festival (June 14–25)
The 16th annual River To River Festival will have over 100+ performances — with 12 days of dance, music, theater and the visual arts activities. The festival will take place across 31 unique sites across Lower Manhattan and Governors Island.

“From City Hall Park to the Financial District to South Street Seaport to Governors Island, the Medici-like Lower Manhattan Cultural Council deploys some of our most interesting dance artists, including the Dance Cartel, Netta Yerushalmy, Faye Driscoll, Marjani Forté-Saunders, Beth Gill, Maria Hassabi, Jodi Melnick, and Will Rawls. If I had to choose, I’d definitely catch Melnick’s Moat (June 17–18 at Fort Jay), and the long-awaited, The Set Up: Island Ghost Sleep Princess Time Story Show (June 18–19 and 24–25 at Governors Island), a six-year collaboration among Wally Cardona, Jennifer Lacey, and multiple international collaborators, all masters of French or Asian dance traditions. Consider taking a week of vacation days so you can wallow in all this talent. Events are free, though some require advance reservations at the website, which offers full descriptions and schedules.” (Elizabeth Zimmer, VillageVoice)

=====================================================
Bonus NYC events– Jazz Venues:
Many consider NYCity the Jazz capital of the world. Here are my favorite Jazz clubs, all on Manhattan’s WestSide. Check out who is playing tonight:

Greenwich Village:
(5 underground, classic jazz joints. all 6 within walking distance of each other):
Village Vanguard – UG, 178 7th Ave. South, villagevanguard.com, 212-255-4037
Blue Note – 131 W3rd St. nr 6th ave. bluenotejazz.com, 212-475-8592
55 Bar – basement @55 Christopher St. nr 7th ave.S. 55bar.com, 212-929-9883
Mezzrow – basement @ 163 W10th St. nr 7th Ave. mezzrow.com,646-476-4346
Smalls – basement @ 183 W10th St. smallslive.com, 646-476-4346
Cornelia Street Cafe – UG, 29 Cornelia St. corneliastreetcafe.com, 212-989-9319

Outside Greenwich Village:
Dizzy’s Club – Broadway @ 60th St. — jazz.org/dizzys / 212-258-9595
Birdland – 315 W44th St.(btw 8/9ave) — birdlandjazz.com / 212-581-3080
Smoke Jazz Club – 2751 Broadway nr.106th St. — smokejazz.com / 212-864-6662

Special Mention:
Caffe Vivaldi – 32 Jones St. nr Bleecker St. — caffevivaldi.com / 212-691-7538
a classic, old jazz club in the Village, Caffe V often surprises with a wonderfully eclectic lineup. It’s my favorite spot for an evening of listening enjoyment and discovery.

==================================================================================
♦ Before making final plans, we suggest you call the venue to confirm ticket availability, dates and times, as schedules are subject to change.
♦ NYCity, with a population of  8.5 million, had a record 60 million visitors last year and was TripAdvisor’s Traveler’s Choice Top U.S. Destination for 2016.  Quality shows draw crowds.
Try to reserve seats for these top NYC events in advance, even if just on day of performance.
NYCity Vacation Travel Guide Video (Expedia):

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A PremierPub / West Village

Corner Bistro / 331 W. 4th St.

Sometimes you just need a beer and a burger. If so, Corner Bistro is the place you want. Located just outside the hip Meatpacking district, this corner bar and grill is decidedly unhip, but it’s not uncrowded, especially at night. Seems that everyone knows this place has one of the better burgers in town.

kac_120405_phude_corner_bistro_bar_1000-600x450In the maze of streets known as the West Village, where West 4th intersects with West 12th (and West 11th, and West 10th, go figure), you will eventually find Corner Bistro on the corner of West 4th and Jane Street. An unassuming neighborhood tavern, it looks just like dozens of other taverns around town.

The bartender tells me that the Corner Bistro celebrated it’s 50th anniversary last year. The well worn interior tells me that the place itself is much older.

Corner Bistro has outlasted many of those other taverns around town because they know how to keep it simple — just good burgers and beer, fairly priced. The classic bistro Burger is only $6.75, and should be ordered medium rare, which will be plenty rare for most folks. Actually, it will be a juicy, messy delight – make sure you have extra napkins. I like to pull up a stool and sit by the large front window in the afternoon, where I can rest my burger and beer on the shelf, and watch the Villagers walk by.

Corner Bistro seems to attract very different groups of patrons depending on time of day. While it’s crowded with locals in the evening, in the afternoon you hear different foreign languages, and watch groups of euro tourists wander in, led by their guidebooks and smartphones.

For the classic Bistro experience, order your burger with a McSorley’s draft, the dark preferably. This is the same beer that you can get over at the original McSorley’s in the East Village, the pub that claims to be the oldest continually operating bar in NYCity. The only difference is that this McSorley’s ale is served with a smile by the bartenders here. Or you can get a Sierra Nevada, Stella, or Hoegaarden on tap if you want to go upscale a bit. Either way this is a simple, but quality burger and beer experience that is just too rare these days (sorry for the pun).
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Website: cornerbistrony.com
Phone #: 212-242-9502
Hours: 11:30am-4am Mon-Sat; 12pm-4am Sun
Happy Hour: NO
Music: Juke Box
Subway: #1/2/3 to 14th St. (S end of platform)
Walk 2 blk W. on 13th St. to 8th Ave.; 1 blk S. on 8th Ave. to Jane St.
Update:
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“Pub” is used in it’s broadest sense – bars, bar/restaurants, jazz clubs, wine bars, tapas bars, craft beer bars, dive bars, cocktail lounges, and of course, pubs – just about anyplace you can get a drink without a cover charge (except for certain jazz clubs).

If you have a fave premier pub or good eating place on Manhattan’s WestSide let us all know about it – leave a comment.
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NYC Events,”Only the Best” (06/21) + Museum Special Exhibitions: Manhattan’s 5th Avenue

Today’s Elite 8  NYC Events > WEDNESDAY/JUNE 21, 2017

“We search the internet everyday looking for the very best of What’s Happening, primarily on Manhattan’s WestSide, so that you don’t have to.” We make it as easy as 1-2-3.
For future NYC Events be sure to check the tab above: “Notable NYC Events-June”

Have time for only one NYC Event today? Do this:

Jazztopad Festival: Wójciński / Szmańda Quartet and STRYJO (also Thursday)
Presented in partnership with the Polish Cultural Institute
Dizzy’s Club / 7:30PM, +9:30PM, $35
“The annual Jazztopad Festival at Dizzy’s Club Coca-Cola is a must-see showcase for anyone interested in the world of jazz and improvised music. This year, each set will be split between two groups: the Wójciński / Szmańda Quartet and STRYJO. The two groups are quite different, but they compliment one another beautifully.

The Wójciński / Szmańda Quartet features the three Wójciński brothers – each of them a current mainstay in the Polish jazz scene – on trumpet, piano, and bass, plus Krzysztof Szmańda on drums.

STRYJO is a trio that, on paper, probably sounds like it’s for a niche audience, but that’s absolutely not the case. STRYJO performs 100% improvised songs (including themes, rhythms, structure, etc.) that sound neither “free” nor overly simplistic. Groove seems to be a priority here, and STRYJO’s embrace of easily identifiable rhythmic foundations makes their music immediately accessible and allows them to dazzle with the details.”

==========================================================

7 OTHER TOP NYC EVENTS TODAY (see below for full listing)
>>Make Music New York
>>Diana Krall
>>L.A. Dance Project
>>Brian Stokes Mitchell: Plays with Music
>>Onegin
>>An Evening with Albert Einstein
>>Maureen Meister on A Description of the New York Central Park
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Music, Dance, Performing Arts

Make Music New York
One Day, Five Boroughs, Hundreds of Performances
“Walk around the boroughs on Wednesday and you’re almost certain to bump into a Make Music New York event: There are over 1,000 of them, morning, afternoon and evening. Part of the fun is simple exploration, the pleasure of the unexpected, but three highlights are worth noting: “49 Flutes,” a citywide performance of John Cage’s “49 Waltzes for the Five Boroughs”; a performance of Gérard Grisey’s “Le Noir de l’Étoile” at the American Museum of Natural History at 12:30 p.m.; and “WTC @ WTC,” a complete account of Bach’s “Well-Tempered Clavier” at the 9/11 Memorial plaza, at 4 p.m.”( DAVID ALLEN-NYT)

Diana Krall
Beacon Theater, / 7:30PM, $83+
“Award-winning jazz pianist and world renowned singer, Diana Krall’s show will feature songs from her vast catalogue, as well as her new album, “Turn Down The Quiet.” Diana Krall is the only jazz singer to have eight albums debut at the top of the Billboard Jazz Albums chart. Her unique artistry transcends any single musical style and has made her one of the most recognizable artists of our time.

With her pre-bop piano style, cool and sensual singing, and gorgeously photogenic looks, Krall took the jazz world by storm in the late 1990s with the release of her first studio album, Stepping Out, in 1993. Her third album, All for You: A Dedication to the Nat King Cole Trio (1996), helped show off her singer-pianist roots and earned her a Grammy nomination and several prime Billboard positions, cementing her name as one of top popular Jazz artists around.”

L.A. Dance Project
Joyce Theater, 175 8th Ave/ 7:30PM, $56-$81
“Benjamin Millepied, who turns forty this week, was an early star at the School of American Ballet and the New York City Ballet. He choreographed and danced in the notorious Black Swan, then married his screen colleague Natalie Portman. He founded this distinguished repertory troupe in Los Angeles in 2012, went off to a thorny three-year stint as director of the Paris Opera Ballet, and is now back in California, from whence he brings two programs of promising work. The first, opening Tuesday, June 13, includes Ohad Naharin’s Yag and two of Millepied’s own dances, the 2014 Hearts & Arrows and the world premiere of In Silence We Speak. The second bill, playing in repertory starting Wednesday, June 14, reprises Silence and features Justin Peck’s Murder Ballades, a MinEvent by Merce Cunningham, and Millepied’s Orpheus Highway.” (Elizabeth Zimmer, VillageVoice)

Brian Stokes Mitchell: Plays with Music (thru June 24)
Feinstein’s/54 Below / 7PM, $100
“Superlative or not, there aren’t many adjectives that fit Brian Stokes Mitchell as well as “unparalleled.” Last starring on Broadway in 2016’s SHUFFLE ALONG, the two-time Tony winner and member of the Theatre Hall of Fame has cemented himself as one of the greatest leading men on Broadway, and his rich, deep baritone is a force all its own. This week, alongside long-time collaborator Tedd Firth, he makes his Feinstein’s/54 Below solo debut, sampling songs from his upcoming album, PLAYS WITH MUSIC, an eclectic collection of showtunes, folk songs, and more.” (Ashley Steves, BroadwayWorld)

Onegin (Jun 19 – 24)
American Ballet Theatre (through July 8)
@ Metropolitan Opera House / 2PM +7:30PM, $22+
“Pushkin’s great verse novel, Eugene Onegin, is interpreted with flawless storytelling skill by John Cranko. With a wealth of magical moments, this compelling tale features an unusual twist of double unrequited love—while the high-handed Onegin at first spurns the young, naive Tatiana, she blooms to become a sophisticated St. Petersburg aristocrat who, in turn, rejects his subsequent advances in a final crushing blow. Tchaikovsky’s vivid music brings to life the world of Imperial Russia with beauty, drama and passion.”

Smart Stuff / Other NYC Events
(Lectures, Discussions, Book Talks, Literary Readings, Classes, Food & Drink, Other)

An Evening with Albert Einstein
The Remarkable Genius of Albert Einstein: His Life and Universe
New York Institute of Technology, 1855 Broadway /7PM, $80
“Dig deeper into a portrait of genius with an NYU professor’s session on Albert Einstein (he’ll employ Einstein’s thought experiment techniques so his thinking can be understood with a minimum of mathematics).” (ThoughtGallery.org)

Maureen Meister on A Description of the New York Central Park
Book Culture on Columbus, 450 Columbus Ave./ 7PM, FREE
Clarence C. Cook‘s classic book A Description of the New York Central Park, has just been reissued by NYU Press.

“Central Park receives millions of visitors every year, tourists and locals alike. A Description of the New York Central Park, published in 1869, is recognized today as the most important book about the park to appear during its early years. The lively, often wry, text was written by Clarence C. Cook, a distinguished Victorian art critic, while the illustrations were drawn by the popular Albert Fitch Bellows. The author and artist examine many sites in the park that survive to this day as well as features that have vanished over time.

In a new Introduction, Maureen Meister reveals how the book came about. Meister tells how Olmsted and Vaux advised Cook on what he wrote, and she has found evidence to suggest that they initiated the book’s publication. This book is their book. While the original volume offers much to delight the modern reader, Meister’s Introduction sheds light on how the book served a greater purpose. It was published to champion Olmsted and Vaux and to advocate for their vision–a dream for a magnificent public park that has come to be regarded as New York City’s achievement and a model for the nation.”

and don’t forget this continuing event, an eclectic extravaganza that is an annual highlight in Lower Manhattan –  the very lowest WestSide of Manhattan:

River To River Festival (June 14–25)
The 16th annual River To River Festival will have over 100+ performances — with 12 days of dance, music, theater and the visual arts activities. The festival will take place across 31 unique sites across Lower Manhattan and Governors Island.

“From City Hall Park to the Financial District to South Street Seaport to Governors Island, the Medici-like Lower Manhattan Cultural Council deploys some of our most interesting dance artists, including the Dance Cartel, Netta Yerushalmy, Faye Driscoll, Marjani Forté-Saunders, Beth Gill, Maria Hassabi, Jodi Melnick, and Will Rawls. If I had to choose, I’d definitely catch Melnick’s Moat (June 17–18 at Fort Jay), and the long-awaited, The Set Up: Island Ghost Sleep Princess Time Story Show (June 18–19 and 24–25 at Governors Island), a six-year collaboration among Wally Cardona, Jennifer Lacey, and multiple international collaborators, all masters of French or Asian dance traditions. Consider taking a week of vacation days so you can wallow in all this talent. Events are free, though some require advance reservations at the website, which offers full descriptions and schedules.” (Elizabeth Zimmer, VillageVoice)

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Bonus NYC events– Jazz Venues:
Many consider NYCity the Jazz capital of the world. Here are my favorite Jazz clubs, all on Manhattan’s WestSide. Check out who is playing tonight:

Greenwich Village:
(5 are underground, classic jazz joints. all 6 are within walking distance of each other):
Village Vanguard – UG, 178 7th Ave. South, villagevanguard.com, 212-255-4037
Blue Note – 131 W3rd St. nr 6th ave. bluenotejazz.com, 212-475-8592
55 Bar – basement @55 Christopher St. nr 7th ave.S. 55bar.com, 212-929-9883
Mezzrow – basement @ 163 W10th St. nr 7th Ave. mezzrow.com,646-476-4346
Smalls – basement @ 183 W10th St. smallslive.com, 646-476-4346
Cornelia Street Cafe – UG, 29 Cornelia St. corneliastreetcafe.com, 212-989-9319

Outside Greenwich Village:
Dizzy’s Club – Broadway @ 60th St. — jazz.org/dizzys / 212-258-9595
Birdland – 315 W44th St.(btw 8/9ave) — birdlandjazz.com / 212-581-3080
Smoke Jazz Club – 2751 Broadway nr.106th St. — smokejazz.com / 212-864-6662

Special Mention:
Caffe Vivaldi – 32 Jones St. nr Bleecker St. — caffevivaldi.com / 212-691-7538
a classic, old jazz club in the Village, Caffe V often surprises with a wonderfully eclectic lineup. It’s my favorite spot for an evening of listening enjoyment and discovery.

==================================================================================
♦ Before making final plans, we suggest you call the venue to confirm ticket availability, dates and times, as schedules are subject to change.
♦ NYCity, with a population of  8.5 million, had a record 60 million visitors last year and was TripAdvisor’s Traveler’s Choice Top U.S. Destination for 2017.  Quality shows draw crowds.
Try to reserve seats for these top NYC events in advance, even if just on day of performance.
NYCity Vacation Travel Guide Video (Expedia):

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WHAT’S ON VIEW
These are My Fave Special Exhibitions @ MUSEUMS / Manhattan’s Fifth Avenue
(See the New York Times Arts Section for listings of all museum exhibitions,
and also see the expanded reviews of these exhibitions)

Museum of the City of New York
‘A CITY SEEN: TODD WEBB’S POSTWAR NEW YORK, 1945­-1960’ (thru Sept.04)
“Webb, a Detroit native who lost his money in the 1929 crash, served as a Navy photographer during World War II. His first major solo exhibition, “I See a City,” opened at the Museum of the City of New York in September 1946. Now the museum is putting the photographer, who died in 2000, in the spotlight again with more than 100 of his pictures of the city, including this shot of 125th Street in Harlem in 1946.
WHEN | WHERE Through Sept. 4, at the Museum of the City of New York, 1220 Fifth Ave.
INFO $18; 212­534­1672, mcny.org ­­ (STAV ZIV-Newsday)

and you should be sure to check out the special exhibitions at that little museum on Fifth Ave., The Metropolitan Museum of Art
(open 7 days /week, AND always Pay What You Wish)

at the very least you will want to see this one:
Age of Empires: Chinese Art of the Qin & Han Dynasties (221 B.C.-A.D. 220)
“Not least among the achievements of Ying Zheng, the founding emperor of the short-lived Qin dynasty (221-206 B.C.), was propaganda, some of which still echoes bombastically on the walls of this show: you won’t depart with any confusion about who first unified China. But the chance to see a platoon of his spectacular terra-cotta warriors, half a dozen or so of the thousands that were buried with the emperor, who died in 210 B.C., and excavated in the nineteen-seventies, is not to be missed. Fitted together like action figures from mass-produced body parts and originally equipped with real bronze weapons, the life-size sculptures have individually detailed faces of surprising charisma. One kneeling archer, with square-toed shoes and a mustache, is so striking he may trigger déjà vu. Along with the soldiers comes a wide-ranging selection of contemporaneous artifacts, many of them demonstrating a naturalistic approach to anatomy and an untrammelled expressive whimsy—both of which were later eradicated by the heavy stylization during the Han dynasty. Examples of the former include a recently discovered terra-cotta strongman with a potbelly; examples of the latter include a bronze lamp shaped like a mythical bird tipping its head back to swallow its own smoke. But, if many of the show’s pieces make Qin and Han culture look unexpectedly relatable, its highlights are those that were unmistakably made long ago and far away, particularly the unforgettable jade burial suit of the Han princess Dou Wan. Discovered in a cliffside tomb in Hebei Province, in 1968, the ritual object is made of more than two thousand rectangular panels of jade, sewn together with gold.” (NewYorker)  THRU JULY 16.

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Museum Mile is a section of Fifth Avenue which contains one of the densest displays of culture in the world. Eight museums can be found along this section of Fifth Avenue:
• 105th Street – El Museo del Barrio (closed Sun-Mon)*
• 103rd Street – Museum of the City of New York (open 7 days /week)
•  92nd Street – The Jewish Museum (closed Wed) (Sat FREE) (Thu 5-8 PWYW)
•  91st Street  –  Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum (open 7 days /week)
•  89th Street –  National Academy Museum (closed Mon-Tue)
•  88th Street –  Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum (closed Thu) (Sat 6-8 PWYW)
•  86th Street –  Neue Galerie New York (closed Tue-Wed) (Fri 6-8 FREE)
Last, but certainly not least, America’s premier museum
•  82nd Street – The Metropolitan Museum of Art (open 7 days /week)*
*always Pay What You Wish (PWYW)

Although technically not part of the Museum Mile, the Frick Collection (closed Mon) (SUN 11am-1pm PWYW) on the corner of 70th St. and Fifth Avenue and the The Morgan Library & Museum (closed Mon) (Fri 7-9 FREE) on Madison Ave and 37th St are also located near Fifth Ave.
Now plan your own museum crawl (info on hours & admission updated June 2, 2015).
==============================================================
For other selected Museum and Gallery Special Exhibitions see Recent Posts in right Sidebar dated 06/19 and 06/17.
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NYC Events,”Only the Best” (06/20) + Today’s Featured Pub (Greenwich Village)

Today’s Super 7  NYC Events > TUESDAY/JUNE 20, 2017

“We search the internet everyday looking for the very best of What’s Happening, primarily on Manhattan’s WestSide, so that you don’t have to.” We make it as easy as 1-2-3.
For future NYC Events be sure to check the tab above: “Notable NYC Events-June”

Have time for only one NYC Event today? Do this:

THAT’S ENTERTAINMENT: DIETZ AND SCHWARTZ AND FRIENDS,
Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall / 7:30PM, $25+
“Presented by The Mabel Mercer Foundation and hosted by the incomparable KT Sullivan, this show is an embarrassment of riches. With classic songs such as “Dancing in the Dark” and “You and the Music,” paired with some of the cabaret community’s major names (Sidney Myer, Frank Dain, Karen Oberlin, and Mark Nadler, just to name a few), this program has managed to take the stage in one of the world’s grandest venues and made it feel small. (Ashley Steves, BroadwayWorld)

==========================================================

6 OTHER TOP NYC EVENTS TODAY (see below for full listing)
>>L.A. Dance Project
>>Brian Stokes Mitchell: Plays with Music
>>THEO HILL TRIO
>>Onegin
>>Night at the Museums 2017
>>Jazz 101 | Jazz Today: How the Music Reached the 21st Century
===========================================================

Music, Dance, Performing Arts

L.A. Dance Project
Joyce Theater, 175 8th Ave/ 7:30PM, $56-$81
“Benjamin Millepied, who turns forty this week, was an early star at the School of American Ballet and the New York City Ballet. He choreographed and danced in the notorious Black Swan, then married his screen colleague Natalie Portman. He founded this distinguished repertory troupe in Los Angeles in 2012, went off to a thorny three-year stint as director of the Paris Opera Ballet, and is now back in California, from whence he brings two programs of promising work. The first, opening Tuesday, June 13, includes Ohad Naharin’s Yag and two of Millepied’s own dances, the 2014 Hearts & Arrows and the world premiere of In Silence We Speak. The second bill, playing in repertory starting Wednesday, June 14, reprises Silence and features Justin Peck’s Murder Ballades, a MinEvent by Merce Cunningham, and Millepied’s Orpheus Highway.” (Elizabeth Zimmer, VillageVoice)

Brian Stokes Mitchell: Plays with Music (thru June 24)
Feinstein’s/54 Below / 7PM, $100
“Superlative or not, there aren’t many adjectives that fit Brian Stokes Mitchell as well as “unparalleled.” Last starring on Broadway in 2016’s SHUFFLE ALONG, the two-time Tony winner and member of the Theatre Hall of Fame has cemented himself as one of the greatest leading men on Broadway, and his rich, deep baritone is a force all its own. This week, alongside long-time collaborator Tedd Firth, he makes his Feinstein’s/54 Below solo debut, sampling songs from his upcoming album, PLAYS WITH MUSIC, an eclectic collection of showtunes, folk songs, and more.” (Ashley Steves, BroadwayWorld)

THEO HILL TRIO
at Dizzy’s Club Coca-Cola / 7:30 and 9:30PM, $
“Theo Hill, a vital young pianist at play in New York’s straight-ahead tradition, has a new album out. It’s called “Promethean,” and it tells you what you need to know about him: Harmonically, he’s got a bright and tangy palette; rhythmically, he shifts gears easily and often, weaving in traffic and keeping you engaged. His compositions sometimes betray a subtle Caribbean influence, as well as the standard markers of postbop. He appears here with the trio from the album: Yasushi Nakamura on bass and Mark Whitfield Jr. on drums.” (GIOVANNI RUSSONELLO-NYT)

Onegin (Jun 19 – 24)
American Ballet Theatre (through July 8)
@ Metropolitan Opera House / 7:30PM, $22+
“Pushkin’s great verse novel, Eugene Onegin, is interpreted with flawless storytelling skill by John Cranko. With a wealth of magical moments, this compelling tale features an unusual twist of double unrequited love—while the high-handed Onegin at first spurns the young, naive Tatiana, she blooms to become a sophisticated St. Petersburg aristocrat who, in turn, rejects his subsequent advances in a final crushing blow. Tchaikovsky’s vivid music brings to life the world of Imperial Russia with beauty, drama and passion.”

Smart Stuff / Other NYC Events
(Lectures, Discussions, Book Talks, Literary Readings, Classes, Food & Drink, Other)

Night at the Museums 2017
Lower Manhattan, 4-8PM, FREE
“The museums and historic landmarks of Lower Manhattan are an American treasure. Explore one of the most diverse and concentrated groups of museums in the world – 15 sites all within comfortable walking distance of each other. This annual event takes place rain or shine.”
Participating museums and historic sites include the African Burial Ground National Monument, Federal Hall National Memorial, Fraunces Tavern Museum, Museum of American Finance, Museum of Jewish Heritage – A Living Memorial to the Holocaust, National Archives at New York City, National Museum of the American Indian – Smithsonian Institution, National September 11 Memorial Museum, NYC Municipal Archives Visitor Center, 9/11 Tribute Center, The Skyscraper Museum, South Street Seaport Museum, and Wall Street Walks.

Jazz 101 | Jazz Today: How the Music Reached the 21st Century
Jazz at Lincoln Center, Rose Hall/Time Warner Center, 5th Floor / 6:30PM, $35
“Join us for an interactive and lively introduction to the nation’s greatest art form lead by Seton Hawkins, Director of Public Programs and Education Resources at Jazz at Lincoln Center. Hawkins, producer, manager, publicist, radio DJ, and advocate in Jazz for more than a decade will help you to develop your ears to hear the many details and intricacies that make this music so endlessly fascinating, and guide you through the history and development of the styles.

As the 1970s gave way to the 1980s and beyond, many styles recycled and re-emerged, while other styles sprung onto the scene in new and exciting ways. At the cusp of the 21st Century, artists like Wynton Marsalis, James Carter, Amina Claudine Myers, John Scofield, and more were offering unique visions for the future of Jazz, while stalwarts like Wayne Shorter and Herbie Hancock continued a tradition of relentless questing and innovation in music. In our final Jazz 101 session, we’ll examine how styles continued to develop and evolve in the decades leading up to the 2000s.”

and don’t forget this continuing event, an eclectic extravaganza that is an annual highlight in Lower Manhattan –  the very lowest WestSide of Manhattan:

River To River Festival (June 14–25)
The 16th annual River To River Festival will have over 100+ performances — with 12 days of dance, music, theater and the visual arts activities. The festival will take place across 31 unique sites across Lower Manhattan and Governors Island.

“From City Hall Park to the Financial District to South Street Seaport to Governors Island, the Medici-like Lower Manhattan Cultural Council deploys some of our most interesting dance artists, including the Dance Cartel, Netta Yerushalmy, Faye Driscoll, Marjani Forté-Saunders, Beth Gill, Maria Hassabi, Jodi Melnick, and Will Rawls. If I had to choose, I’d definitely catch Melnick’s Moat (June 17–18 at Fort Jay), and the long-awaited, The Set Up: Island Ghost Sleep Princess Time Story Show (June 18–19 and 24–25 at Governors Island), a six-year collaboration among Wally Cardona, Jennifer Lacey, and multiple international collaborators, all masters of French or Asian dance traditions. Consider taking a week of vacation days so you can wallow in all this talent. Events are free, though some require advance reservations at the website, which offers full descriptions and schedules.” (Elizabeth Zimmer, VillageVoice)

=======================================================
Bonus NYC Events – Music Venues:
So much fine live music every night in this town. These are my favorite non jazz music venues on Manhattan’s WestSide. Check out who’s playing tonight:

City Winery – 155 Varick St., citywinery.com, 212-608-0555
Feinstein’s/54 Below – 254 W54th St., 54below.com, 646-476-3551
Joe’s Pub @ Public Theater – 425 Lafayette St., joespub.com, 212-967-7555
Metropolitan Room – 34W22ndSt., metropolitan room.com, 212-206-0440
Beacon Theatre – 2124 Broadway @ 74th St., beacontheatre.com, 212-465-6500
Town Hall – 123 W43rd St., thetownhall.org, 212-997-6661
B.B. King’s Blues Bar – 237W42nd St., bbkingblues.com, 212-997-2144
Bowery Ballroom – 6 Delancey St. boweryballroom.com,
Le Poisson Rouge – 158 Bleecker St., lepoissonrouge.com, 212-505-3474

Special Mention:
Caffe Vivaldi – 32 Jones St. nr Bleecker St. caffevivaldi.com, 212-691-7538
a classic, old jazz club in the Village, Caffe V often surprises with a wonderfully eclectic lineup. It’s my favorite spot for an evening of listening discovery and enjoyment.
See Below.

==================================================================================
♦ Before making final plans, we suggest you call the venue to confirm ticket availability, dates and times, as schedules are subject to change.
♦ NYCity, with a population of  8.5 million, had a record 60 million visitors last year and was TripAdvisor’s Traveler’s Choice Top U.S. Destination for 2017.  Quality shows draw crowds.
Try to reserve seats for these top NYC events in advance, even if just on day of performance.
NYCity Vacation Travel Guide Video (Expedia):
=================================================================================

A PremierPub and 3 Good Eating Places – Greenwich Village

Caffe Vivaldi / 32 Jones Street (btw. Bleecker St./W4th St.)

Café Vivaldi is a classic, intimate club located in Greenwich Village on Jones Street, the street featured on the cover of Bob Dylan’s second album, “Freewheelin’. ”

maxresdefaultEach night Ishrat, the long time proprietor and impresario, carefully curates and schedules an eclectic series of musicians. You can often see him at his table in the corner, hard at work reviewing music videos and listening to cd demos on his laptop, scouting out future bookings. Musicians come from all over to play and sing in a club in Greenwich Village. Some are local New Yorkers, others are just passing through, in town for a few days.

There is a small bar, seating maybe 10. It’s close to the stage and I find it’s a perfect spot to sip a glass of red wine while listening to the music. The room itself has the performance area at one end and a cozy fireplace at the other. The performance area here is small, dominated by a large black Yamaha Grand piano. Tables are bunched together and most people at the tables are eating lite meals or sampling the wonderful desserts.

There is also a good selection of fairly priced wines,  but you are here because of the music. You can never be quite sure what you’re going to find, and that’s half the charm of this place. It’s not a home run every night, but many nights it’s pretty special.

I remember the night I saw the most talented bossa nova group, just in from San Paulo. As I listened, I wondered if there was any better music playing anywhere else in New York City that night. And at Caffé Vivaldi there is never a cover charge. Their recently redesigned web site does give you a better idea of the type of music playing each night.

At one time Greenwich Village was filled with clubs just like this, but times change. Real estate interests have impacted the village, and not for the better. Even Caffé Vivaldi had a rough time recently, when a new landlord raised the rent exorbitantly. Fortunately, Ishrat has built a loyal following over the years, and a fund raiser and slightly more reasonable rent has kept Café Vivaldi in business.

When Woody Allen and Al Pacino wanted to make movies featuring the timeless quality of Greenwich Village they came to Vivaldi. It’s important that we keep this special place alive, for if we lose Cafe Vivaldi, NYCity will have lost a piece of it’s soul.

Website: http://caffevivaldi.com/
Phone #: (212) 691-7538
Hours: Music generally 7:30PM – 11PM, but varies
Lunch/Dinner 11AM-on
Subway: #1 to Christopher St.
Walk 1 blk S. on 7th ave S. to Bleecker St., 1 blk left on Bleecker to Jones St., 50 yards left on Jones St. to Caffe V.
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“Pub” is used in it’s broadest sense – bars, bar/restaurants, jazz clubs, wine bars, tapas bars, craft beer bars, dive bars, cocktail lounges, and of course, pubs – just about anyplace you can get a drink without a cover charge.

If you have a fave premier pub or good eating place on Manhattan’s WestSide let us all know about it – leave a comment.
========================================================

3 Good Eating places

It’s not difficult to find a place to eat in Manhattan.
Finding a good, inexpensive place to eat is a bit harder.
Here are a few of my faves in this neighborhood:

Fish – 280 Bleecker St. (just a bit S. of 7th ave South)
This was an easy pick – the best raw bar special in town. $9 gets you 6 of the freshest oysters or clams + a glass of wine or beer. Don’t know how they can do it, but I tell everyone I know about this place. And it’s located right in the heart of some of the best no cover music in town.

Bleecker Street Pizza – 69 7th ave S. (corner of Bleecker St.)
The place is tiny and not much to look at, but this is one good slice. They like to brag that they have been voted “Best pizza in NY” 3 years in a row by the Food Network. I believe them. I would have voted for them.

Num Pang – 21 E 12th St. (btw. University Place/5th ave.)
This is a Cambodian banh mi sandwich shop that kept me well fed while I was in class nearby recently. It’s cramped, even for NYCity, but usually there is room up the spiral staircase to sit down and eat. In good weather carry your sandwich a few blocks to Union Square park. You may have to wait a few minutes, because everything is freshly made, but it’s worth it. Can you believe – an unheard of 26 food rating by Zagat.

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“3 Good Eating places” focuses on a quick bite, what I call “Fine Fast Food – NYCity Style”
No reservations needed.
========================================================
NYCity is the most diverse and interesting place to find a meal anywhere in the world. With more than 24,000 eating establishments you might welcome some advice.

◊ For all my picks of 54 Good Eating places, and essays on my favorite 18 PremierPubs in 9 Neighborhoods on Manhattan’s WestSide, order a copy of my e-book:
“Eating and Drinking on NYCity’s WestSide” ($4.99, available Fall 2017).
◊ Order before Aug. 31, 2017 and receive a bonus – 27 of my favorite casual dining places with free Wi-Fi.

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NYC Events,”Only the Best” (06/19) + Museum Special Exhibitions: Manhattan’s WestSide

Today’s Super 7  NYC Events > MONDAY/JUNE 19, 2017

“We search the internet everyday looking for the very best of What’s Happening, primarily on Manhattan’s WestSide, so that you don’t have to.” We make it as easy as 1-2-3.
For future NYC Events be sure to check the tab above: “Notable NYC Events-June”

Have time for only one NYC Event today? Do this:

Broadway by the Year: The Broadway Musicals of 2007–2017
The Town Hall, 123 W43rd St./ 8PM, $52+
“Scott Siegel’s valuable concert series opens another time capsule, this time to more recent musical-theater history. The cast includes Alice Ripley, Brandon Uranowitz, Christine Noll, Alex Brightman, Erin Davie, Danny Gardner and Scott Coulter; expect selections from Hamilton, Next to Normal, Grey Gardens, The Bridges of Madison County and other Broadway standouts.” (TONY)

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6 OTHER TOP NYC EVENTS TODAY (see below for full listing)
>>Onegin
>>Spencer Day: Angel City
>>LORI BELILOVE & THE ISADORA DUNCAN DANCE COMPANY
>>What Divides Americans From the World and Each Other
>>Marvellous Thieves: Secret Authors of the Arabian Nights
>>How the Internet and Games Are Changing Our Brain
===========================================================

Music, Dance, Performing Arts

Onegin (Jun 19 – 24)
American Ballet Theatre (through July 8)
@ Metropolitan Opera House / 7:30PM, $22+
“Pushkin’s great verse novel, Eugene Onegin, is interpreted with flawless storytelling skill by John Cranko. With a wealth of magical moments, this compelling tale features an unusual twist of double unrequited love—while the high-handed Onegin at first spurns the young, naive Tatiana, she blooms to become a sophisticated St. Petersburg aristocrat who, in turn, rejects his subsequent advances in a final crushing blow. Tchaikovsky’s vivid music brings to life the world of Imperial Russia with beauty, drama and passion.”

Spencer Day: Angel City
Birdland, 315W 44th St./ 7PM, $30
“Once a Harry Connick Jr.–inspired entertainer, Star Search finalist and dreamy crooner, Spencer Day has become a compelling and quirky singer-songwriter, whose tunes are touched by jazz, classical, country and German cabaret. In his new set, he celebrates the release of his seventh album, Angel City.” (TONY)

LORI BELILOVE & THE ISADORA DUNCAN DANCE COMPANY
at the Joyce Theater / 7:30PM, $30
“In “The Art of Isadora,” Ms. Belilove and her dancers celebrate what would have been Isadora Duncan’s 140th birthday with a selection of early solos and group works created in homage to Apollo and Dionysius, as well as more tragic solos created during Duncan’s final years. Any chance to see Ms. Belilove’s refined company is worth it, but this time, there’s an extra incentive: Appearing as a guest artist is Sara Mearns, the New York City Ballet principal, who will perform Duncan’s “Narcissus.” No, she’s not a modern dancer, but Ms. Mearns, fearless and dazzling, is alway up for stretching the boundaries of her art.” (NYT-GIA KOURLAS)

Smart Stuff / Other NYC Events
(Lectures, Discussions, Book Talks, Literary Readings, Classes, Food & Drink, Other)

Exceptional America:
What Divides Americans From the World and Each Other
92nd Street Y, 1395 Lexington Ave./ 12PM, $25
‘Stanford Law professor Mugambi Jouet examines why Americans are far more divided than other Westerners over issues like wealth inequality, health care, climate change, evolution, abortion, gay rights, gun control, mass incarceration, and war. Raised in Paris by a French mother and a Kenyan father, the multicultural Jouet discusses how the intense polarization of U.S. conservatives and liberals has become a key dimension of American exceptionalism — and how exceptionalism, once a source of strength, may now spell decline.”

Author @ the Library | Marvellous Thieves: Secret Authors of the Arabian Nights
Mid-Manhattan Library, 455 Fifth Ave./ 6:30PM, FREE
With Paulo Lemos Horta, Assistant Professor of Literature at New York University Abu Dhabi, in conversation with Lawrence Weschler, author of “Uncanny Valley: Adventures in the Narrative.”
“This illustrated lecture reveals the cross-cultural encounters—the collaborations, borrowings, and acts of literary larceny—that produced the Arabian Nights in European languages. Ranging from the coffeehouses of Aleppo to the salons of Paris, from colonial Calcutta to Bohemian London, Paulo Lemos Horta introduces audience to the poets and scholars, pilgrims and charlatans who made crucial but largely unacknowledged contributions to this most famous of story collections.

After the talk, there is a discussion of the book with writer Lawrence Weschler, whose grandfather, the modernist composer Ernst Toch, based his final opera, “The Last Tale,” on Scheherazade’s ultimate yarn.”

How the Internet and Games Are Changing Our Brain
92nd Street Y, 1395 Lexington Ave./ 7PM, $30
“There seem to be a lot of people who have given up on down time, or even the spaces in the margins where we used to process experience. What’s becoming of their minds? Dr. Robert Reiner, a Ph. D. in clinical psychology, illuminates the physical impact of our addiction.” (ThoughtGallery.org)

and don’t forget this continuing event, an eclectic extravaganza that is an annual highlight in Lower Manhattan –  the very lowest WestSide of Manhattan:

River To River Festival (June 14–25)
The 16th annual River To River Festival will have over 100+ performances — with 12 days of dance, music, theater and the visual arts activities. The festival will take place across 31 unique sites across Lower Manhattan and Governors Island.
TONIGHT: Catacomb by Beth Gill (June 17-19)
Federal Hall / 8PM
“Inspired by the imagination and subconscious, Catacomb is a dance by five performers inhabiting a dreamlike, sensory-rich world that draws the audience into an immersive act of witnessing. Gill creates an intimate, surrealist space building on the formalism of her past several works (Electric Midwife, New Work for the Desert), while forging new psychologically-informed terrain through explorations of role, gathering and layering of meaning and being, and ultimately, disappearance.”

=====================================================
Bonus NYC events– Jazz Venues:
Many consider NYCity the Jazz capital of the world. Here are my favorite Jazz clubs, all on Manhattan’s WestSide. Check out who is playing tonight:

Greenwich Village:
(5 are underground, classic jazz joints. all 6 are within walking distance of each other):
Village Vanguard – UG, 178 7th Ave. South, villagevanguard.com, 212-255-4037
Blue Note – 131 W3rd St. nr 6th ave. bluenotejazz.com, 212-475-8592
55 Bar – basement @55 Christopher St. nr 7th ave.S. 55bar.com, 212-929-9883
Mezzrow – basement @ 163 W10th St. nr 7th Ave. mezzrow.com,646-476-4346
Smalls – basement @ 183 W10th St. smallslive.com, 646-476-4346
Cornelia Street Cafe – UG, 29 Cornelia St. corneliastreetcafe.com, 212-989-9319

Outside Greenwich Village:
Dizzy’s Club – Broadway @ 60th St. — jazz.org/dizzys / 212-258-9595
Birdland – 315 W44th St.(btw 8/9ave) — birdlandjazz.com / 212-581-3080
Smoke Jazz Club – 2751 Broadway nr.106th St. — smokejazz.com / 212-864-6662

Special Mention:
Caffe Vivaldi – 32 Jones St. nr Bleecker St. — caffevivaldi.com / 212-691-7538
a classic, old jazz club in the Village, Caffe V often surprises with a wonderfully eclectic lineup. It’s my favorite spot for an evening of listening enjoyment and discovery.

==================================================================================
♦ Before making final plans, we suggest you call the venue to confirm ticket availability, dates and times, as schedules are subject to change.
♦ NYCity, with a population of  8.5 million, had a record 60 million visitors last year and was TripAdvisor’s Traveler’s Choice Top U.S. Destination for 2017.  Quality shows draw crowds.
Try to reserve seats for these top NYC events in advance, even if just on day of performance.
NYCity Vacation Travel Guide Video (Expedia):

===============================================================================

WHAT’S ON VIEW
My Fave Special Exhibitions – MUSEUMS / Manhattan’s WestSide
(See the New York Times Arts Section for listings of all museums,
and also to see their expanded reviews of these exhibitions)

Whitney Museum of American Art:

mm

Museum of Arts and Design (thru Aug 20)
2 Columbus Circle
Counter-Couture: Handmade Fashion in an American Counterculture
“In all its sumptuous, ragtag, iconoclastic, and utopian forms, hippie clothing reflected the seismic cultural shifts of Vietnam War-era America, eschewing the mass-produced in favor of the personalized and the handmade. This captivating exhibition, installed in moodily lit galleries against purple-and-gold wallpaper, goes beyond the expected caftans and macramé to detail the nuances and extremes of countercultural aesthetics. A section devoted to stage costumes includes a medieval-inspired muumuu, its pastel-ombré velvet adorned with a starburst appliqué; Mama Cass Elliot, of the Mamas & the Papas, wore it in 1967. Nearby, looping film footage includes performance documentation of the Cockettes, an anarchic theatre group whose psychedelic, thrift-store drag sensibility helped shape a nascent queer aesthetic. From the Army-surplus garments appropriated and painstakingly embroidered by flower children to the dashikis and African fabrics embraced by the black-pride movement to the ascetic styles of communes and cults, the exhibition emphasizes how vernacular fashion signalled antiestablishment values and group identity. That said, high fashion isn’t neglected. One highlight is the visionary designer Kaisik Wong’s glittering, futuristic “wearable art,” which resembles armor and cocoons from another planet—or the next Aquarian age.” (NewYorker)

Museum of Modern Art:

‘ROBERT RAUSCHENBERG: AMONG FRIENDS’ (thru Sept.17)

“This retrospective of one of America’s great artists includes more than 250 paintings, sculptures, drawings, sound and video recordings, prints and photographs created over the course of a six­decade career. Rauschenberg sometimes worked with artists, dancers, musicians and writers (including John Cage, Merce Cunningham, Yvonne Rainer and Jasper Johns), and the exhibition will be supplemented by dance and performance.” ( STAV ZIV-Newsday)

A special pat on the back to MOMA, who is now displaying art from the seven countries affected by Trump’s travel ban.

“Trump’s ban against refugees from seven Muslim-majority nations has sparked acts of defiance in NYC, from demonstrations across town, to striking taxicab drivers at JFK to Middle Eastern bodega owners closing their shops in protest. Recently, the Museum Of Modern added its two cents by bringing out artworks it owns from the affected countries, and hanging them prominently within the galleries usually reserved for 19th- and 20th-century artworks from Europe and the United States. Paintings by Picasso and Matisse, for example, were removed to make way for pieces by Tala Madani (from Iran), Ibrahim El-Salahi (from Sudan) and architect Zaha Hadid (from Iraq). The rehanging, which was unannounced, aims to create a symbolic welcome that repudiates Trump by creating a visual dialog between the newly added works and the more familiar objects from MoMA’s permanent collection.” (TONY)

 The Museum of the City of New York:

NY at Its Core (ongoing)
“Ten years in the making, New York at Its Core tells the compelling story of New York’s rise from a striving Dutch village to today’s “Capital of the World.” The exhibition captures the human energy that drove New York to become a city like no other and a subject of fascination the world over. Entertaining, inspiring, important, and at times bemusing, New York City “big personalities,” including Alexander Hamilton, Walt Whitman, Boss Tweed, Emma Goldman, JP Morgan, Fiorello La Guardia, Jane Jacobs, Jay-Z, and dozens more, parade through the exhibition. Visitors will also learn the stories of lesser-known New York personalities, like Lenape chieftain Penhawitz and Italian immigrant Susie Rocco. Even animals like the horse, the pig, the beaver, and the oyster, which played pivotal roles in the economy and daily life of New York, get their moment in the historical spotlight. Occupying the entire first floor in three interactive galleries (Port City, 1609-1898, World City, 1898-2012, and Future City Lab) New York at Its Core is shaped by four themes: money, density, diversity, and creativity. Together, they provide a lens for examining the character of the city, and underlie the modern global metropolis we know today. mcny.org” (NYCity Guide)

American Museum of Natural History:

Mummies (thru 1/7/18)
“For thousands of years, peoples around the world practiced mummification as a way of preserving and honoring their dead. Mummies brings you face to face with some of these ancient individuals and reveals how scientists are using modern technology to glean stunning details about them and their cultures. In Mummies, ancient remains from the Nile Valley of Africa and the Andes Mountains of South America will be on view, allowing visitors to connect with cultures from the distant past. Mummification, a more widespread practice than most think, was used not only for royal Egyptians but also for common people and even animals. Interactive touch tables let visitors virtually “unravel” or see inside mummies as they delve deep into the unique stories of the people or animals who lie within. Other parts of the exhibition showcase the latest isotopic and DNA testing being performed on mummies, and explain how these sophisticated analytical techniques are helping scientists discover important clues about long-vanished practices. Mummies was developed by The Field Museum, Chicago.”(NYCity Guide)

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PLUS, These wonderful museum exhibitions elsewhere, continue through this period:

‘GEORGIA O’KEEFFE: LIVING MODERN’ at the Brooklyn Museum (through July 23). Given that most artists are to some extent dandies, it would be wrong to view this fascinating show through an exclusively feminist lens. But it does demonstrate the powerful, carefully cultivated aesthetic and inborn independence that connects the art, wardrobe, living spaces and public persona of America’s first celebrity artist. In and around her art, she redefined gender and style. (Roberta Smith-NYT)
>and another view of this exhibition–Georgia O’Keeffe: “Living Modern” provides a new look at an iconic American artist at the very institution that hosted her first solo museum exhibition in 1927—the Brooklyn Museum. Presenting O’Keeffe’s remarkable wardrobe in dialogue with iconic paintings and photographs, this singular exhibition focuses in on the modernist persona O’Keeffe crafted for herself. With photographs by luminaries like Alfred Stieglitz, Ansel Adams, and Annie Leibovitz, the show reflects O’Keeffe’s radical rethinking of female identity, and the artist’s commitment to elements of modernism—minimalism, seriality, simplification—not only in her art, but also in her distinctive style of dress. (NYCity Guide)

(now-9/6/17) The newest show at the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, Visionaries: Creating a Modern Guggenheim, provides a rare chance to explore in-depth some of the key artists of this essential New York institution. Framed by the interests of six leading patrons, Visionaries brings together canvases from masters like Max Ernst, René Magritte, and Yves Tanguy, and sculptures by Joseph Cornell and Alberto Giacometti. In addition, Jackson Pollock’s Alchemy (1947) is being shown in the U.S. for the first time in nearly 50 years. More than a dozen works on paper by Picasso and Van Gogh, rarely on view to the public, can be seen in the Thannhauser Gallery, and paintings by Pierre-Auguste Renoir, Paul Gauguin, and Édouard Manet are displayed on the museum’s legendary ramps.

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For other selected Museum and Gallery Special Exhibitions see Recent Posts in right Sidebar dated 06/17 and 06/15.
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NYC Events,”Only the Best” (06/18) + Today’s Featured Pub (Midtown West)

Today’s Super 7  NYC Events > SUNDAY/JUNE 18, 2017

“We search the internet everyday looking for the very best of What’s Happening, primarily on Manhattan’s WestSide, so that you don’t have to.” We make it as easy as 1-2-3.
For future NYC Events be sure to check the tab above: “Notable NYC Events-June”

Have time for only one NYC Event today? Do this:

Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater (Jun 14-18)
NYS/DHK Theater, Lincoln Center/ 3PM, +7:30PM, $50+
Explore the richly diverse styles of choreographers from three countries in Global Voices; a trio of provocative dances that share Bold Visions; and four works that came about thanks to their Musical Inspirations. Mr. Ailey’s beloved Revelations is the uplifting finale of each program.
GLOBAL VOICES – June 16 at 8:00, June 18 at 7:30 Deep Mauro Bigonzetti Walking Mad Johan Inger Revelations Alvin Ailey BOLD VISIONS – June 17 at 8:00, June 18 at 3:00 r-Evolution, Dream. Hope Boykin Untitled America Kyle Abraham Revelations Alvin Ailey

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6 OTHER TOP NYC EVENTS TODAY (see below for full listing)
>>Barry Harris Trio
>>JEFF HARNAR SINGS SAMMY CAHN ALL THE WAY
>>GEORGE COLEMAN QUARTET
>>Danilo Pérez, John Patitucci, Brian Blade Trio
>>Underground Manhattan, The Secret History of the Subway System
>>Founding Father’s Day Tour
===========================================================

Music, Dance, Performing Arts

Barry Harris Trio
Dizzy’s Club Coca-Cola, Broadway at 60th St./ 7:30PM, +9:30PM, $40
“With each passing year, it’s getting harder to find living musicians who actually played with Charlie Parker, but, as a budding tenderfoot back in Detroit, the eighty-seven-year-old Barry Harris did. Since then, this dyed-in-the-wool bebop pianist has carefully buffed his reputation, and it now gleams with authentic lustre. He’s joined by the bassist Ray Drummond and a longtime collaborator, the drummer Leroy Williams.” (NewYorker)

JEFF HARNAR SINGS SAMMY CAHN ALL THE WAY
Metropolitan Room / 7PM, $30
“On what would be the Sammy Cahn’s 104th birthday, Jeff Harnar puts on a tribute for the songwriter/lyricist worth celebrating. Sammy Cahn ALL THE WAY makes its way to the Metropolitan Room for an encore performance this weekend, paying tribute the best of Cahn (and, subsequently, some of the best songs ever composed). Sung by Sinatra, on the silver screen, and on the Broadway stage, Cahn’s music gets better year after year after year. And fittingly, Harnar, as good as he is, is the kind of performer who somehow only gets better every time you hear him.” (Ashley Steves, BroadwayWorld)

Danilo Pérez, John Patitucci, Brian Blade Trio (LAST DAY)
Blue Note, 131 W. 3rd St./ 8 and 10:30PM, $20- $35
“What’s missing from this picture? Wayne Shorter, of course, but the intrepid members of the great saxophonist’s quartet meshed so well that remaining together as a creative unit, even without the master in charge, became imperative. The trio’s 2015 début recording, “Children of the Light,” found the pianist Pérez, the bassist Patitucci, and the drummer Blade displaying the churning, intuitive interaction that made their work with Shorter a joy.” (NewYorker)

GEORGE COLEMAN QUARTET
at Smoke Jazz Club, / 7PM and 9PM, $45
“A leading elder statesman in jazz, Mr. Coleman is known for his subtly adventurous solos, full of extended arpeggios; his keen but coolheaded tone; and a brief affiliation with the Miles Davis Quintet in the 1960s that jump-started his career. He didn’t record as a leader until the mid-1970s, but has released a steady stream of satisfying work ever since. Last year’s “A Master Speaks” was recorded at Smoke, and Mr. Coleman — a National Endowment for the Arts Jazz Master — returns to the club this weekend for a three-night run. He’s joined by the pianist Jeb Patton, the bassist John Webber and the drummer Joe Farnsworth.” (NYT-GIOVANNI RUSSONELLO)

Smart Stuff / Other NYC Events
(Lectures, Discussions, Book Talks, Literary Readings, Classes, Food & Drink, Other)

Underground Manhattan, The Secret History of the Subway System
at 2:00 pm – 4:30 pm, Tickets $29-$35.
“Join New York Adventure Club as we explore the oldest subway stations in New York City with transit expert and guide Gary Dennis.

Starting at Bowling Green Station and working our way up to Grand Central Terminal, Gary will give you the secret history and inside story of the creation of the original 1904 subway line, and how it grew into the most extensive transportation system in the world.”

Founding Father’s Day Tour
New-York Historical Society, 170 Central Park West/ 12PM, $38
“Take a journey through history this Father’s Day on an exceptional tour celebrating both famous and lesser known Founding Fathers. Our specially trained docent will lead you through the Smith Gallery, showcasing our Founding Fathers’ central role in the creation of the United States. The tour continues to our special exhibition, Thomas Jefferson: The Private Man, from the Collections of the Massachusetts Historical Society, where you will discover rarely seen documents, including a copy of the Declaration of Independence in Jefferson’s hand. The tour concludes in our newly unveiled fourth floor where a selection of some of the most fascinating historic objects in the collection shed light on the political and personal lives of our Founding Fathers.

After the tour, participants will meet George Washington in person! Michael Grillo, as George Washington, captures our most memorable Founding Father. Learn first-hand about Washington’s experiences as a soldier in the French and Indian War and as commander in chief of the Continental Army during the Revolutionary War. Discover the man who would unanimously be elected our first president and come to be known as the “father of our country.”

and don’t forget this continuing event, an eclectic extravaganza that is an annual highlight in Lower Manhattan –  the very lowest WestSide of Manhattan:

River To River Festival (June 14–25)
The 16th annual River To River Festival will have over 100+ performances — with 12 days of dance, music, theater and the visual arts activities. The festival will take place across 31 unique sites across Lower Manhattan and Governors Island.
TONIGHT: Catacomb by Beth Gill (June 17-19)
Federal Hall / 8PM
“Inspired by the imagination and subconscious, Catacomb is a dance by five performers inhabiting a dreamlike, sensory-rich world that draws the audience into an immersive act of witnessing. Gill creates an intimate, surrealist space building on the formalism of her past several works (Electric Midwife, New Work for the Desert), while forging new psychologically-informed terrain through explorations of role, gathering and layering of meaning and being, and ultimately, disappearance.”

==========================================================
Bonus NYC Events – Jazz Venues:
Many consider NYCity the Jazz capital of the world. Here are my favorite Jazz clubs, all on Manhattan’s WestSide. Check out who is playing tonight:

Greenwich Village
(5 are underground, classic jazz joints. all 6 are within walking distance of each other):
Village Vanguard – UG, 178 7th Ave. South, villagevanguard.com, 212-255-4037
Blue Note – 131 W3rd St. nr 6th ave. bluenotejazz.com, 212-475-8592
55 Bar – basement @55 Christopher St. nr 7th ave.S. 55bar.com, 212-929-9883
Mezzrow – basement @ 163 W10th St. nr 7th Ave. mezzrow.com,646-476-4346
Smalls – basement @ 183 W10th St. smallslive.com, 646-476-4346
Cornelia Street Cafe – UG, 29 Cornelia St. corneliastreetcafe.com, 212-989-9319

Outside Greenwich Village:
Dizzy’s Club – Broadway @ 60th St. — jazz.org/dizzys / 212-258-9595
Birdland – 315 W44th St.(btw 8/9ave) — birdlandjazz.com / 212-581-3080
Smoke Jazz Club – 2751 Broadway nr.106th St. — smokejazz.com / 212-864-6662

Special Mention:
Caffe Vivaldi – 32 Jones St. nr Bleecker St. — caffevivaldi.com / 212-691-7538
a classic, old jazz club in the Village, Caffe V often surprises with a wonderfully eclectic lineup. It’s my favorite spot for an evening of listening enjoyment and discovery.

==============================================================================
♦ Before making final plans, we suggest you call the venue to confirm ticket availability, dates and times, as schedules are subject to change.
♦ NYCity, with a population of  8.5 million, had a record 60 million visitors last year and is TripAdvisor’s Traveler’s Choice Top U.S. Destination for 2017.  Quality shows draw crowds.
Try to reserve seats for these top NYC events in advance, even if just on day of performance.
NYCity Vacation Travel Guide Video (Expedia):

=============================================================================

A PremierPub / Midtown West.

Russian Vodka Room / 265 W 52nd St (btw 7th/8th ave)

Sure, you could travel to Minsk or even Brighton Beach, for an authentic Russian experience, but why bother. On those days when you feel you must wash down your dish of kasha with a few glasses of icy, cold vodka, the Russian Vodka Room will definitely satisfy your urge.

From the outside this place looks a bit drab, and with no windows, a bit mysterious. Midtown tourists walk right by on their way to see “Jersey Boys,” just down the block.
(Alas, no more. After 10 years, “Jersey Boys” closed Jan.15)

lThose in the know enter a secret hideaway, a dimly lit front room with soft jazz playing – a perfect spot for an illicit late-night rendezvous, or maybe a meet-up with your Russian spy handler, but that’s later in the evening. Early in the evening the large U-shaped bar fills with the after work happy hour crowd, a group made very happy by the much reduced prices.

Their website says: “Welcome Comrades”. Of course, this welcome focuses on dozens of different vodkas, including their own special infusions, which marinate in giant, clear glass jugs visible around the room. The large vodka martinis ensure that you won’t confuse this place with your mother’s Russian Tea Room.

But man does not live by vodka alone. Eat some food, especially the tapa like appetizers. Be decadent and try the cheese blintzes with chocolate, or try a main dish like beef stroganoff with kasha.

Your best bet is to go on a night when the piano man is playing. This guy, who looks like he has eaten a lot of those cheese blintzes, plays five nights a week from 7 to 12 (no Mondays and Thursdays). When the piano man is playing American pop tunes, and you are at the crowded, dimly lit bar testing the horseradish infused vodka, that’s when the RVR shines.

It’s the kind of place where the noise gets louder and the crowd gets happier as the happy hour goes on. I’m generally a beer guy, but I like to come here with a group of friends. We find a table in the back room near the piano man; we eat, and we drink vodka ‘till it hurts (and it will hurt).
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Website: http://www.russianvodkaroom.com/
Phone #: 212-307-5835
Hours: 4pm-2am; Fri-Sun closes 4am (that could be trouble)
Happy Hour: 4-7pm every day
$4 shots infused vodka (2oz), $5 cosmos; $4 czech draft beer
Music: FR-SU; TU-WE / 7pm-12am
Subway: #1 to 50th St.
Walk 2 blk N. on B’way to 52nd St.; 1 blk W. to RVR
Confusingly, the Russian Samovar is right across the street, on the S. side of 52nd St.
The RVR, your destination, is on the N. side of 52nd St.
Update: music now includes a younger, trimmer piano man. “Tiny” we miss you.
Update#2: Rumor that “Tiny” is back playing only on Friday nights – need to check it out.

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“Pub” is used in it’s broadest sense – bars, bar/restaurants, jazz clubs, wine bars, tapas bars, craft beer bars, dive bars, cocktail lounges, and of course, pubs – just about anyplace you can get a drink without a cover charge (except for certain jazz clubs).
If you have a fave premier pub or good eating place on Manhattan’s WestSide let us all know about it – leave a comment.
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NYC Events,”Only the Best” (06/17) + GallerySpecialExhibits: Chelsea

Today’s Super 7  NYC Events > SATURDAY/JUNE 17, 2017

“We search the internet everyday looking for the very best of What’s Happening, primarily on Manhattan’s WestSide, so that you don’t have to.” We make it as easy as 1-2-3.
For future NYC Events be sure to check the tab above: “Notable NYC Events-June”

Have time for only one NYC Event today? Do this:

Marilyn Maye (LAST DAY)
Metropolitan Room, 34 W. 22nd St./ 7PM, $35
“Posting herself at the crossroads where cabaret, jazz, and Broadway meet, the resilient octogenarian vocalist Maye embodies showbiz experience that seems unimaginable today—including seventy-six appearances on “The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson.” She may be a throwback to another era, but her life force speaks firmly of the now.” (NewYorker)

This old babe is a special performer, catch her while you can.

==========================================================

6 OTHER TOP NYC EVENTS TODAY (see below for full listing)
>>L.A. Dance Project
>>Maria Grand
>>GEORGE COLEMAN QUARTET
>>Tierney Sutton
>>A Beginner’s Guide to All Things Whiskey
>>Chelsea “Best Exhibits” Gallery Tour
===========================================================

Music, Dance, Performing Arts

L.A. Dance Project
Joyce Theater, 175 8th Ave/ 2PM, +8PM, $56-$81
“Benjamin Millepied, who turns forty this week, was an early star at the School of American Ballet and the New York City Ballet. He choreographed and danced in the notorious Black Swan, then married his screen colleague Natalie Portman. He founded this distinguished repertory troupe in Los Angeles in 2012, went off to a thorny three-year stint as director of the Paris Opera Ballet, and is now back in California, from whence he brings two programs of promising work. The first, opening Tuesday, June 13, includes Ohad Naharin’s Yag and two of Millepied’s own dances, the 2014 Hearts & Arrows and the world premiere of In Silence We Speak. The second bill, playing in repertory starting Wednesday, June 14, reprises Silence and features Justin Peck’s Murder Ballades, a MinEvent by Merce Cunningham, and Millepied’s Orpheus Highway.” (Elizabeth Zimmer, VillageVoice)

Maria Grand
at the Jazz Gallery / 7:30 and 9:30PM, $22
“On “TetraWind,” an EP released this year, Ms. Grand, 25, unfurls a teetering logic. She conjoins the spiky rhythms of Rashaan Carter’s bass with tilting sheets of harmony, built by her tenor saxophone, David Bryant’s keyboard and Roman Filiu’s alto saxophone. As an improviser, the Swiss-Argentine Ms. Grand is both measured and frank, often venturing into gentle provocation. She appears here with an eight-piece ensemble featuring Mr. Carter, Mr. Bryant and Mr. Filiu, as well as the percussionist Mauricio Herrera, the drummer Jeremy Dutton, the dancer Lucía Rodríguez and the rapper Amani Fela. On Saturday she will be joined by Rajna Swaminathan on the mridangam, a double-headed drum.” (NYT-GIOVANNI RUSSONELLO)

GEORGE COLEMAN QUARTET
at Smoke Jazz Club, / 7PM and 9PM, $45
“A leading elder statesman in jazz, Mr. Coleman is known for his subtly adventurous solos, full of extended arpeggios; his keen but coolheaded tone; and a brief affiliation with the Miles Davis Quintet in the 1960s that jump-started his career. He didn’t record as a leader until the mid-1970s, but has released a steady stream of satisfying work ever since. Last year’s “A Master Speaks” was recorded at Smoke, and Mr. Coleman — a National Endowment for the Arts Jazz Master — returns to the club this weekend for a three-night run. He’s joined by the pianist Jeb Patton, the bassist John Webber and the drummer Joe Farnsworth.” (NYT-GIOVANNI RUSSONELLO)

Tierney Sutton (LAST DAY)
Jazz Standard, 116 E. 27th St./ 7:30PM, $35
“Three years after she trained her sights on Joni Mitchell, with her 2013 musical mash note “After Blue,” the inclusive jazz vocalist Sutton put a personal spin on the work of Gordon Sumner with “The Sting Variations.” “Roxanne” didn’t make the cut, but such soundtrack-of-a-generation material as “Message in a Bottle” and “Fields of Gold” is given new life.” (NewYorker)

Smart Stuff / Other NYC Events
(Lectures, Discussions, Book Talks, Literary Readings, Classes, Food & Drink, Other)

Elsewhere but this one definitely looks worth the detour:
A Beginner’s Guide to All Things Whiskey
Q.E.D., 27-16 23rd Ave., btw. 27th & 28th Sts., Astoria, Queens / 5-7PM, $40
“What’s the difference between Bourbon, Rye and Scotch? What is Moonshine, and where does it come from? What flavors should I expect in each style of whiskey? These answers and many more will be covered in this simple and comprehensive class exploring all things whiskey. It will discuss the history of the delicious brown booze and the proper ways in which to store, drink and enjoy it. Eliminating the confusion and frustration of what whiskeys to drink, will turn you into a happier and more savvy whiskey drinker.
Every student will get to taste four different types of whiskey!”

Chelsea “Best Exhibits” Gallery Tour
New York Gallery Tours, 1PM, +3:45PM, $25
“Highlights of this STUPENDOUS tour, featuring exhibits that appeared on our May and June “Best Exhibits” tours: (1) the most dazzling computer-driven light art show we’ve ever encountered, (2) astonishing photo-realistic paintings selling in the hundreds of thousands of dollars each, and (3) Oscar-winning actress Cate Blanchett starring in a 12-minute wild-and-crazy video art piece about a powerful woman, among 7 extraordinary shows.”

The tour will take place no matter what the weather – rain, snow or shine (the art is all indoors). Meet at 526 W. 26th St. between 10th & 11th Ave. Nearest subways: C- or E-Train to 23rd St. Admission is $25.

and don’t forget this continuing event, an eclectic extravaganza that is an annual highlight in Lower Manhattan –  the very lowest WestSide of Manhattan:

River To River Festival (June 14–25)
The 16th annual River To River Festival will have over 100+ performances — with 12 days of dance, music, theater and the visual arts activities. The festival will take place across 31 unique sites across Lower Manhattan and Governors Island.
TONIGHT: Catacomb by Beth Gill (June 17-19)
Federal Hall / 8PM
“Inspired by the imagination and subconscious, Catacomb is a dance by five performers inhabiting a dreamlike, sensory-rich world that draws the audience into an immersive act of witnessing. Gill creates an intimate, surrealist space building on the formalism of her past several works (Electric Midwife, New Work for the Desert), while forging new psychologically-informed terrain through explorations of role, gathering and layering of meaning and being, and ultimately, disappearance.”

=====================================================
Bonus NYC events– Jazz Venues:
Many consider NYCity the Jazz capital of the world. Here are my favorite Jazz clubs, all on Manhattan’s WestSide. Check out who is playing tonight:

Greenwich Village:
(5 are underground, classic jazz joints. all 6 are within walking distance of each other):
Village Vanguard – UG, 178 7th Ave. South, villagevanguard.com, 212-255-4037
Blue Note – 131 W3rd St. nr 6th ave. bluenotejazz.com, 212-475-8592
55 Bar – basement @55 Christopher St. nr 7th ave.S. 55bar.com, 212-929-9883
Mezzrow – basement @ 163 W10th St. nr 7th Ave. mezzrow.com,646-476-4346
Smalls – basement @ 183 W10th St. smallslive.com, 646-476-4346
Cornelia Street Cafe – UG, 29 Cornelia St. corneliastreetcafe.com, 212-989-9319

Outside Greenwich Village:
Dizzy’s Club – Broadway @ 60th St. — jazz.org/dizzys / 212-258-9595
Birdland – 315 W44th St.(btw 8/9ave) — birdlandjazz.com / 212-581-3080
Smoke Jazz Club – 2751 Broadway nr.106th St. — smokejazz.com / 212-864-6662

Special Mention:
Caffe Vivaldi – 32 Jones St. nr Bleecker St. — caffevivaldi.com / 212-691-7538
a classic, old jazz club in the Village, Caffe V often surprises with a wonderfully eclectic lineup. It’s my favorite spot for an evening of listening enjoyment and discovery.

==================================================================================
♦ Before making final plans, we suggest you call the venue to confirm ticket availability, dates and times, as schedules are subject to change.
♦ NYCity, with a population of  8.5 million, had a record 60 million visitors last year and was TripAdvisor’s Traveler’s Choice Top U.S. Destination for 2017.  Quality shows draw crowds.
Try to reserve seats for these top NYC events in advance, even if just on day of performance.
NYCity Vacation Travel Guide Video (Expedia):

================================================================================

Chelsea Art Gallery District*

Chelsea is the heart of the NYCity contemporary art scene. Home to more than 300 art galleries, the Rubin Museum, the Joyce Theater and The Kitchen performance spaces, there is no place like it anywhere in the world. Come here to browse free exhibitions by world-renowned artists and those unknowns waiting to be discovered in an art district that is concentrated between West 18th and West 27th Streets, and 10th and 11th Avenues. Afterwards stop in the Chelsea Market, stroll on the High Line, or rest up at one of the many cafes and bars and discuss the fine art.

Here is one exhibition the New Yorker really likes:

Alex Katz (thru June 30)
Taylor 16×34, 515 W19th St. Chelsea
“As a student at Cooper Union, in 1946, Katz was struggling in drawing class, so he started sketching people wherever he went. The pocket-size results, exhibited here together for the first time, are an illuminating example of the contest between an aspiring artist’s attempt to capture every detail of what he’s seeing and the confident ease with which, as a mature painter, Katz came to encapsulate faces and gestures. In one drawing, a pair of women and a pair of men sit kibbitzing on benches in Union Square; Katz captures all four physiognomies and expressions—from a querulous, sharp-nosed woman to a sympathetic, shovel-chinned man—with vigilant specificity.” (NewYorker)

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For a listing of 25 essential galleries in the Chelsea Art Gallery District, organized by street, which enables you to create your own Chelsea Art Gallery crawl, see the Chelsea Gallery Guide (nycgo.com) Or check out TONY magazine’s list of the “Best Chelsea Galleries” and click through to see what’s on view.

*Now plan your own gallery crawl, but better to plan your visits for Tuesday through Saturday; most galleries are closed Sunday and Monday.

TIP: After your gallery tour, stop in Ovest at 513W27th St. for Aperitivo Italiano (Happy Hour on steroids). Discuss all the great art you have viewed over a drink and a very tasty selection of FREE appetizers (M-F, 5-8pm). OR try the NYT recommendation: “When you’re done, adjourn to the newly renovated Bottino , the Chelsea art world’s unofficial canteen on 10th Avenue (btw 24/25 St.) “

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For other selected Museum and Gallery Special Exhibitions see recent posts in right sidebar dated 06/15 and 06/13.

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