Selected Events (01/22) + Museum Special Exhibitions: Manhattan’s 5th Avenue

 Today’s SWEET 6+ > FRIDAY / JAN. 22, 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:
American Songbook series (continues through April)
Lincoln Center / 8:30PM, $30+
“Loudon Wainwright III, one of the most durable artists to come out of the ’70s singer-songwriter movement, headlines a show at the Appel Room, in Frederick P. Rose Hall (60th Street and Broadway) as part of Lincoln Center’s annual American Songbook series. From his earliest incarnation, when this folk-singing humorist was mislabeled a “new Dylan,” critics called Mr. Wainwright a genius; New Dylan or not, that description that still applies.

The series began Tuesday with a free concert by the theater composer Ryan Scott Oliver at the David Rubenstein Atrium (Broadway between 62nd and 63rd Street) and moved to the Appel Room Jan. 20 with a concert by Vanessa Williams. A multi-artist celebration of Peggy Lee followed Thursday, and Rita Moreno closes the first week on Jan. 23.
At various times; a schedule and more information is at americansongbook.org.”
(NYT-Stephen Holden)

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)

Stacey Kent “Tenderly” CD Release Celebration (thru Jan.23)
Birdland, / 8:30PM, $50
“Critically acclaimed, Grammy®-nominated singer Stacey Kent sings from the soul, telling her stories with faultless phrasing and a lucid, enchanting voice. Her new CD release, “Tenderly,” is a collaboration with Brazilian music master Robert Menescal and follow-up to ”Marcos Valle & Stacey Kent Live.”

Smart Stuff / Other
(Lectures, Discussions, Book Talks, Literary Readings, Classes, Food & Drink, Other)
Outsider Art Fair
Metropolitan Pavilion, 125 West 18th St./ 11AM; $20–$100
“Since the first Outsider Art Fair 25 years ago, interest in self-taught and folk artists has grown exponentially in the art world—so much so that the genre has had a major stylistic impact on many insider artists, including some with MFAs from the most important graduate programs in the country. This fair remains the premier showcase for this category of work, with a reach that’s become worldwide.” (TONY)

BroadwayCon
New York Hilton;/ 10AM; Marketplace explorer (does not include programming) $50, Daily Pass (marketplace and programming $95, full weekend pass $250)
“With the meteoric rise in popularity of New York Comic Con, the theater addicts of Broadway and beyond were bound to organize a weekend blowout of their own. Opt in for the full day passes to check out gatherings and panels including “I Was a Teenage Diva” and “As If We Never Said Hello: The Andrew Lloyd Weber Fan Meetup,” master classes and panels led by stars like Michael Cerveris and Jenn Colella, cabaret, singalongs and more. For the real convention floor experience, hit the marketplace and snag all the collectables and souvenirs you can from your favorite shows. Unlike most cons, BroadwayCon has a free autograph policy, so prepare for some long lines.” (TONY)

SPECIAL EVENT, A MUST SEE:
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 powerful 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: 
OpenTable
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., 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
B.B. King’s Blues Bar – 237W42nd St., bbkingblues.com, 212-997-2144
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 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 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.
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WHAT’S ON VIEW
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, metmuseum.org.” (Smith)

‘Ancient Egypt Transformed: The Middle Kingdom’ (through Jan. 24)
Don’t Miss This One!
“Ancient Egypt is box office gold: Do a show, and people will come. Why? Mummies, Hollywood and Queen Nefertiti contribute to its allure. Also, we tend to identify with Egyptians of thousands of years ago. In art, they look exotic, but not out of reach. They drank beer, collected cats and wore flip-flops. They yearned to stay young and to live forever, with loved ones nearby and snack food piled high. Who can’t relate to that? Few institutions have done a better job at illuminating Egyptian art than the Met. And it returns to the subject in an exhibition low on King Tut bling and high on complicated beauty, about a broad swath of history (circa 2030 to 1650 B.C.) that has never had a comprehensive museum showcase till now. 212-535-7710, metmuseum.org.” (Cotter)

Jewish Museum:
‘The Power of Pictures: Early Soviet Photography, Early Soviet Film’ (through Feb. 7) “Revolutions sell utopias; that’s their job. Art, if it behaves itself and sticks to the right script, can be an important part of the promotional package. That’s the basic tale told by this exhibition of photographs and vintage films of the 1920s and ’30s, but with a question added: What happens to art when the script is drastically revised? Russia was an experiment in progress in the heady years following the 1917 revolution, and avant-garde art, free-spirited by definition, was officially embraced. When Joseph Stalin came to power art became government-dictated propaganda and its makers, often under threat, towed the line. Remarkably, the show presents a dozen films — some familiar, some not — full-length, on a rotating schedule of four a day, in a small viewing theater built into one of the Jewish Museum’s galleries. 1109 Fifth Avenue, at 92nd Street, 212-423-3200, thejewishmuseum.org.” (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).
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For other selected Museum and Gallery Special Exhibitions see Recent Posts in right Sidebar dated 01/14 and 01/12.

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NEW Feature!
The 100 Books Every New Yorker Should Read
by Kristin Iversen, Brooklyn Magazine (11/09/15)
today’s picks:
1. The Island at the Center of the World by Russell Shorto
This fascinating historical narrative demonstrates why New York is a city unlike any other in America. (Spoiler: It’s because it started out Dutch, not Puritanical and English.) Also, you get to find out all about who Peter Stuyvesant was and why so many derivations of Dutch words are in the New York vernacular.

2. Leaves of Grass by Walt Whitman
Containing what is perhaps the sexiest author photo ever (Whitman was quite a looker; it is not the same picture that you see on the cover to the left of this blurb BY THE WAY), this poetry book is seductively brilliant and far ahead of its time. It’s also responsible for the oft-quoted phrase “I contain multitudes,” which has been bastardized to describe a whole number of things, always to great effect. I’m sure Whitman would have approved. He seems like a pretty chill dude.

3. The Gangs of New York: An Informal History of the Underworld by Herbert Asbury
Easily one of the most fascinating, if ugliest, times of New York City history, the mid-19th century was full of shocking violence, nativist sentiment, corrupt politicians, and truly colorful characters. Asbury shines a light on some of the grimiest parts of New York’s pas

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