Selected Events (01/20) + Museum Special Exhibitions: Manhattan’s WestSide

 Today’s FAB 5+ > WEDNESDAY / JAN. 20, 2016

“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:
Jon Irabagon
Cornelia Street Café, 29 Cornelia St./ 8PM, $10
“A wily, hyperliterate saxophonist who has successfully ducked in and out of the mainstream jazz tradition, Mr. Irabagon leads two small groups next week. On Tuesday he re-enlists the ace rhythm section from “Behind the Sky,” an album released last year: Luis Perdomo on piano, Yasushi Nakamura on bass and Rudy Royston on drums. On Wednesday the format is a trio with two equally brilliant partners: the guitarist Mary Halvorson and the drummer Nasheet Waits.” (Chinen-NYT)

Music, Dance, Performing Arts
Donny McCaslin Quartet (thru Jan.24)
Village Vanguard, 178 Seventh Ave. S., at 11th St./8:30 +10:30PM, $30
“In a move as unexpected and ultimately efficacious as any in his doggedly left-of-center career, the late David Bowie brought on the saxophonist McCaslin’s quartet as the core band for what turned out to be Bowie’s final album, “Blackstar.” McCaslin’s new jazz ensemble features the keyboardist Jason Lindner and the drummer Mark Guiliana, with Nate Wood substituting for the bassist Tim Lefebvre on the first five nights.” (NewYorker)

Live Artery (through Jan. 30)
New York Live Arts, 219 W19th St./ 7:30PM, $15+
For the benefit of visiting arts presenters catching up on the latest in New York dance, Live Artery offered a nearly nonstop buffet of performances this past weekend.

Beginning Wednesday, dance’s bad girl Ann Liv Young presents “Elektra,” her take on the Sophocles tragedy that is sure to be characteristically audacious.” (Schaeffer-NYT)

Smart Stuff / Other
(Lectures, Discussions, Book Talks, Literary Readings, Classes, Food & Drink, Other)
Superhero New York: Real and Imaginary
New-York Historical Society, 170 Central Park West / 6PM, FREE
6 pm: Guests will visit Superheroes in Gotham and can take a selfie with Batman and his Batmobile
7 pm: Watch the parade of superheroes
7:30 pm: Speaker will take the stage

Join us for a FREE evening with comics historian and former Marvel Editorial Director Danny Fingeroth and see our current exhibition Superheroes in Gotham. Fingeroth will present a slideshow tour of New York’s comic book landmarks, both real and imagined. Many of the world’s greatest superheroes were born in New York, and their epic comic book adventures were based in cities similar to the Big Apple, like Gotham City and Metropolis. View the offices where the most famous superheroes were created and gaze upon the sites where the characters lived, worked, and battled. Who knows—your own apartment may share a secret piece of New York’s superhero history! To reserve your spot, please RSVP to

Elsewhere, but this looks worth the detour:
The Future of New York’s Skyline
92nd Street Y, 1395 Lexington Ave./ 7:30PM, $32
“As the name of this discussion suggests, architects will talk about the city’s changing skyline, as well as the increasing need for new buildings to reconcile high performance and environmental consciousness. The speakers are the Pritzker Prize winner Richard Meier; Bjarke Ingels, who will design Two World Trade Center; Annabelle Selldorf, whose historic renovations include the Neue Galerie; and Rick Cook, whose firm designed the LEED-certified Bank of America Tower on Bryant Park. C.J. Hughes, who writes about this subject for The New York Times, will moderate.” (NYT-SpareTimes)

Noche Flamenca: Antigona (through Jan. 23)
West Park Presbyterian Church, 165 W86th St./ $25-$60
Mondays through Saturdays at 8PM
“Traditional Spanish dance and ancient Greek theater are an unlikely but well-suited pair in Noche Flamenca’s sharp production “Antigona,” based on Sophocles’s famous tragedy. The dance lights a fire under the play while discovering in itself a knack for narrative drama. In the title role, the powerhouse Soledad Barrio is both fierce and fragile. The century-old church where the performance takes place is filled with striking sets, darkly amorous music played by a live band and a ferocious Greek chorus of dancers.” (NYT-Schaefer)

a personal note:
Noche Flamenca is Spain’s most successful touring company and its greatest exponent of the art of flamenco. Soledad Barrio is a goddess of dance and brings so much passion to her role as Antigona. Two wonderful Spanish guitarists and two vocalists do not get the credit they deserve. Every piece of this performance is outstanding. Go See It!

This week’s fave and FREE NYCity App: 
Instantly locate restaurants near you with open reservations and then place a reservation right from your iOS device. A great interface and the ability to see a menu from the restaurant you’re interested in makes this my go to restaurant reservation app.

Bonus – Music Venues:
So much fine live music every night in this town. These are my favorite music venues on Manhattan’s WestSide. Check out who’s playing tonight:
City Winery – 155 Varick St.,, 212-608-0555
Feinstein’s/54 Below – 254 W54th St.,, 646-476-3551
Joe’s Pub @ Public Theater – 425 Lafayette St.,, 212-967-7555
Metropolitan Room – 34W22ndSt., metropolitan, 212-206-0440
Beacon Theatre – 2124 Broadway @ 74th St.,, 212-465-6500
B.B. King’s Blues Bar – 237W42nd St.,, 212-997-2144
Le Poisson Rouge – 158 Bleecker St.,, 212-505-3474
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 WestSide
(See the New York Times Arts Section for listings of all museums,
and also to see their expanded reviews of these exhibitions)

Museum of Modern Art:
‘Picasso Sculpture’ (through Feb. 7)
“Nearly a work of art in its own right, this magnificent show redefines Picasso’s achievement with the first full view here in 50 years of his astoundingly varied forays into sculpture. His materials, not his female loves, become the muses, and are different each time out. The basic plotline: After introducing sculptural abstraction and space, he spent about 50 years counting the ways that the figure was far from finished. 212-708-9400,” (Smith-NYT)

‘Jackson Pollock: A Collection Survey, 1934-1954’ (through May 1)
“The first exhibition devoted to the Modern’s unsurpassed Pollock holding gives a dazzling account of the evolution of his signature poured paintings. Its 58 works on canvas and paper also attest to the Modern’s laserlike focus on accounting fully for the achievements of artists it deems great. 212-708-9400,’ (Smith-NYT)

‘Take an Object’ (through Feb. 28)
“Installed next to the Modern’s Jackson Pollock exhibition, this show of 37 works from 1954 to the 1970s reflects how the finality of the Abstract Expressionist’s drip paintings deflected many artists from the medium toward found objects and a greater worldliness. Its title is from a famous notebook entry by Jasper Johns. 212-708-9400,” (Smith-NYT)

 Whitney Museum of American Art:
‘Frank Stella: A Retrospective’ (through Feb. 7)
“This grand, high-spirited, slightly overstuffed exhibition pays overdue tribute to a prominent American artist whose 60-year odyssey through and beyond painting began in this city. It further anoints the Whitney’s new building: The show could never have been pulled off at its old uptown address. And its ingenious installation — alternately dazzling, oppressive and nuts — resounds with stimulating clashes of color, style and process that bring a new unity to his contentious achievement. 99 Gansevoort Street, at Washington Street, 212-570-3600,” (Smith-NYT)

‘Collected by Thea Westreich Wagner and Ethan Wagner’ (through March 6)
“Two of New York’s most dedicated explorers of new art set an important example by refusing the auction or private-museum route and giving almost all of their large collection to a museum. Their generous gift both signifies and adds to the Whitney’s growing stature, especially going forward, as it is integrated into the museum’s rich holdings. This first sampling is quite rewarding. 99 Gansevoort Street, at Washington Street, 212-570-3600,” (Smith-NYT)


For other selected Museum and Gallery Special Exhibitions see Recent Posts in right sidebar dated 01/18 and 01/16.

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