Selected Events (11/23) + Museum Special Exhibitions: Manhattan’s 5th Avenue

Today’s FAB 5 > MONDAY / NOV. 23, 2015

“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.
(click on links for more complete event info.)

Have time for only one event today? Do this:
‘West Side Story’
SVA Theater, 333 W23rd St. / 7PM, $
“This big-screen presentation of the classic movie musical includes a post-show Q. and A. with George Chakiris, who plays Bernardo, the doomed leader of the Sharks gang. He’ll be joined by the theater critic and author Peter Filichia. Plot refresher: “Romeo and Juliet” on the Upper West Side, with music by Leonard Bernstein and lyrics by Stephen Sondheim.” (NYT-SpareTimes)
Sorry, but anything to do with “West Side Story” will always be my top pick of the day.
I’m still trying to figure how it did not receive the Tony award in 1958. They wuz robbed!

Music, Dance, Performing Arts
Christine Ebersole & Billy Stritch in “Our Favorite Things”
Birdland, 315 W44th St./ 7PM, $40
“The Broadway at Birdland concert series is proud to announce the return of Tony Award-winning actress/singer CHRISTINE EBERSOLE and Grammy Award-winning composer/pianist/singer BILLY STRITCH in “Our Favorite Things”

“Our Favorite Things” will celebrate songs from the duo’s past concerts and recordings, including “Surrey With The Fringe on Top,” “Small Hotel,” “My Favorite Things.” Ebersole and Stritch will also introduce a few tunes to kick off the holiday season, complete with their signature tight harmonies, luxurious vocals and snappy conversation.”

What the Eye Hears: A History of Tap Dancing
Segal Theatre Center, The CUNY Graduate Center, 365 Fifth Ave./ 6:30PM, FREE
“New York Times dance critic Brian Seibert introduces his new book on the history of tap dance, which illuminates tap’s complex origins and theatricalization. Seibert charts tap dancing’s growth in the vaudeville circuits and nightclubs of the early twentieth century, chronicles its spread to ubiquity on Broadway and in Hollywood, analyzes its post-World War II decline, and celebrates its reinvention by new generations of American and international performers.

What the Eye Hears is a central account of American popular culture, as well as the pain and pride surrounding the complicated legacy of African Americans in show business. Seibert will speak about the challenges of writing tap history, screen clips from his film collection and introduce a performance by Ayodele Casel, one of New York’s top tap dancers.”

Smart Stuff / Other
(Lectures, Discussions, Book Talks, Literary Readings, Classes, Food & Drink, Other)
Historic Preservation
Rizzoli Bookstore, 1133 Broadway (btw 25th/26th St)./ 5:30PM, FREE
“Karen Loew of the Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation joins photographers James and Karla Murray for an evening honoring old New York and the publication of the Murray’s new title Store Front II—A History Preserved: The Disappearing Face of New York. The Murrays and Loew will participate in a moderated discussion focused on how the city’s mom-and-pop shops stand up in the face of the city’s rapidly escalating corporatization, accompanied by a slideshow of the Murrays favorite images from the book and followed by a book signing.”

Seinfeld Thanksgiving Trivia
Slattery’s Midtown Pub, 8 E36th St./ 7PM; FREE with R.S.V.P.
“You probably didn’t get invited to Tim Whatley’s pre-Thanksgiving party, so head to Midtown and see how well you and your friends fare in a battle of Seinfeldian knowledge. Bring your A-game, you hipster doofus.” (TONY)

Bonus – Music Venues:
So much fine live music every night in this town. These are a few of my favorite music venues on Manhattan’s WestSide. Check out who’s playing tonight:
City Winery – 155 Varick St. /, 212-608-0555
Joe’s Pub @ Public Theater – 425 Lafayette St. /, 212-967-7555
Metropolitan Room – 34 W22nd St. / metropolitan, 212-206-0440
Le Poisson Rouge – 158 Bleecker St. /, 212-505-3474
Beacon Theatre – 2124 Broadway @ 74th St. /, 212-465-6500
B.B. King’s Blues Bar – 237 W42nd St. /, 212-997-2144
Special Mention:
Caffe Vivaldi – 32 Jones St. nr Bleecker St. /, 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 56 million visitors last year and is TripAdvisor’s Traveler’s Choice Top U.S. Destination for 2015.  Quality shows draw crowds. Try to reserve seats in advance, even if just on day of performance.

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)

Metropolitan Museum of Art:
‘Reimagining Modernism: 1900-1950’ (continuing)
One of the greatest encyclopedic museums in the world fulfills its mission a little more with an ambitious reinstallation of works of early European modernism with their American counterparts for the first time in nearly 30 years. Objects of design and paintings by a few self-taught artists further the integration. It is quite a sight, with interesting rotations and fine-tunings to come. 212-535-7710,” (Smith)

Guggenheim Museum:
Kandinsky Gallery (through spring 2016)
“A pioneer of abstract art and eminent aesthetic theorist, Vasily Kandinsky (b. 1866, Moscow; d. 1944, Neuilly-sur-Seine, France) broke new ground in painting during the first decades of the twentieth century. His seminal treatise Über das Geistige in der Kunst (On the Spiritual in Art), published in Munich in December 1911, lays out his program for developing an art independent from observations of the external world. In this and other texts, as well as his work, Kandinsky advanced abstraction’s potential to be free from nature, a quality of music that he admired. The development of a new subject matter based solely on the artist’s “inner necessity” would occupy him for the rest of his life.”

The Guggenheim collection now contains more than 150 works by this single artist, making it the largest collection of Kandinsky works in the United States.

Cooper Hewitt Smithsonian Design Museum (continuing):
rendering-3The stately doors of the 1902 Andrew Carnegie mansion, home to the Cooper Hewitt, are open again after an overhaul and expansion of the premises. Historic house and modern museum have always made an awkward fit, a standoff between preservation and innovation, and the problem remains, but the renovation has brought a wide-open new gallery space, a cafe and a raft of be-your-own-designer digital enhancements. Best of all, more of the museum’s vast permanent collection is now on view, including an Op Art weaving, miniature spiral staircases, ballistic face masks and a dainty enameled 18th-century version of a Swiss knife. Like design itself, this institution is built on tumult and friction, and you feel it. 2 East 91st Street, at Fifth Avenue, 212-849-8400, (Cotter)


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 11/21 and 11/19.
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