Selected Events (06/24) + Museum Special Exhibitions: Manhattan’s WestSide

Today’s Fab 5 > FRIDAY / JUNE 24, 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:

The Metropolitan Opera Summer Recital Series
Brooklyn Bridge Park, Pier 1 / 7PM, FREE
“If you haven’t been to the opera, you owe yourself the experience of seeing some of the world’s finest belt it out onstage. Check out some of the Met’s most powerful vocalists, soprano Angel Blue and tenor Ben Bliss, as they perform as part of Central Park’s Summer Stage.” (TONY)

Even if you don’t love opera, you want to give this a try because of it’s location. The hillside setting overlooks the East River and the downtown skyline. Just a fabulous picnic spot.

Music, Dance, Performing Arts

Freddy Cole (thru Jun 25)
Birdland, 315 W44th St./ 8:30PM, +11PM, $40
“Old-school suave and still in hale voice at eighty-four years old, Cole has yet to encounter a ballad or swinging blues number that he couldn’t finesse to a shine. It took him decades to step outside the shadow of his brother Nat, but Freddy now commands from a throne of his own.” (NewYorker)

American Ballet Theater (through July 2) /
tonight: Romeo and Juliet (thru Jun 25)
Metropolitan Opera House, Lincoln Center / 7:30PM, $20+
“Kenneth MacMillan’s masterful interpretation of Shakespeare’s enduring romantic tragedy has become one of ABT’s signature productions. Against a sumptuous setting in Renaissance Italy, MacMillan weaves a dance tapestry rich in character nuance and sensuality, and Sergei Prokofiev’s instantly recognizable music underscores the lyric beauty and passion of this beloved ballet’s star-crossed lovers.”

Jazztopad Festival (Tuesday through July 1)
Dizzy’s Club, Columbus Circle/ 7:30PM, +9:30PM, $40
“The Jazztopad Festival, a leading event of its kind in Poland, has organized a satellite edition here next week, in collaboration with the Polish Cultural Institute New York. Among the prime offerings are the Obara International Quartet, led by the saxophonist Maciej Obara, at the Jazz Standard on Tuesday; a subtle and sophisticated trio led by the pianist Marcin Wasilewski, at Dizzy’s Club Coca-Cola on Wednesday; and a quintet led by the trumpeter Piotr Damasiewicz, at Dizzy’s on Thursday. More information is at polishculture-nyc.org.” (Chinen-NYT)

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

Elsewhere but this looks worth the detour:
Dylan Goes Electric
92nd Street Y, 1395 Lexington Ave./ 12PM, $25
“On the evening of July 25, 1965, Bob Dylan 
took the stage at the Newport Folk Festival, backed by an electric band, and roared into his new rock hit, “Like a Rolling Stone.”

The audience of committed folk purists and political activists who had hailed him as their acoustic prophet reacted with a mix of shock, booing and scattered cheers. It was the shot heard round the world — Dylan’s declaration of musical independence, the end of the folk revival and the birth of rock as the voice of a generation — and one of the defining moments in twentieth-century music. Join author Elijah Wald as he explores the context of this seminal event.”

PLUS:
River to River Festival (through June 26)
“This annual event is something of a performance-inspired scavenger hunt around Lower Manhattan, both confusing and delighting unsuspecting passers-by. This week, the witty Dance Heginbotham weaves through a harbor-side business complex; the captivating Eiko Otake continues her multiyear project “A Body in Places” on Governors Island; Okwui Okpokwasili takes inspiration from Nigerian women in the 1920s; the hip-hop dancer Ephrat Asherie collaborates with her jazz pianist brother, Ehud; and Will Rawls, left, nods to Balkan folklore. At various times and locations. lmcc.net/program/river-to-river.” (Schaefer-NYT)

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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 Vivaldi32 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 58 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 in advance, even if just on day of performance.
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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)

Museum of Modern Art:

‘Edgar Degas: A Strange New Beauty’ (through July 24)
“Among the greats of late 19th-century French painting, Degas remained closest to tradition and its focus on the human body, which may explain why this large but thrillingly intimate show is his first solo at the Modern. It focuses his monotypes — the most seductive of all print mediums — and their modernizing effect on his art, revealing with exceptional clarity a radical merging of subject and process that brought new liveliness to depictions of the body and to art itself. 212-708-9400, moma.org.” (Smith)

‘From the Collection: 1960-1969’ (through March 2017)
“MoMA shakes up its sanctum sanctorum, installing half of its permanent collection galleries with works chosen by 17 curators from a single decade: the tumultuous 1960s. The limited time frame is balanced by unprecedented breadth and variety. As never before, the presentation mixes together objects and artworks from all six of the museum’s curatorial departments. The blend is alternately stimulating and bewildering, revelatory and infuriating: yet another symptom of the museum’s limited curatorial mind-set. 212-708-9400, moma.org.” (Smith)

 Whitney Museum of American Art:

‘Human Interest: Portraits From the Whitney’s Collection’ (through Feb. 12)
“A year ago, the Whitney inaugurated its new downtown home with a permanent collection showcase called “America Is Hard to See.” Its even more immediately engaging successor, devoted entirely to portraiture, is now on view and might well have been subtitled “Americans Are Strange to Look At,” which, in the 250 images here, we sure are: funny-strange, beautiful-strange, crazy-strange, dangerous-strange, inscrutable-strange. The work is arranged by theme and spread over two floors. There are magnetic images everywhere. 99 Gansevoort Street, 212-570-3600, whitney.org.” (Cotter)

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For other selected Museum and Gallery Special Exhibitions see Recent Posts in right sidebar dated 06/22 and 06/20.
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This week’s fave and FREE NYCity AppS: 
Trip Advisor
An enormous base of NYCity user reviews (2.1 million) provides the widest coverage of hotels (468), restaurants (12,645) and things to do (yes, 3,246). Have a specific question? Then try one of Trip Advisor’s forums. Just remember that with all those reviews you have to try to find the consistency among the comments, and ignore the outliers.

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.

Subway Time 
Need to catch your #1,2,3 subway to attend an event? Use the Subway Time app from the MTA to find out when the next train arrives at your station. The MTA also has Train and Bus Time info available on their mobile website.
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