Selected NYC Events (02/08) + Today’s Featured Pub (Greenwich Village)

Today’s Sweet6 NYC Events>WEDNESDAY/FEB.08, 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-Feb.”

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

Karen Oberlin in BAD LOVE: The Randy Newman Songbook
Metropolitan Room, 34 W22nd St./ 7PM, $24+
“Randy Newman, as a songwriter, is an impassioned social realist in the same vein as (or school of) Yip Harburg mixed with Lorenz Hart… Someone who recognizes the power of songs, with lyrics that can remind us of injustice, the sting of loss and how unkind people can be… And yet in that salad of cruelty Newman tosses large amounts of love, joy and delicious humor. Karen Oberlin, joined by her superb team of Tedd Firth as musical director and pianist and Steve Doyle on bass, explores the many facets of this heartbreaking and hilarious songbook,” (Broadway World)

5  OTHER TOP NYC EVENTS TODAY (see below for full listing)

New York City Ballet – The Sleeping Beauty
Brandon Uranowitz: The Songs of William Finn
Centre Choreographique National—Ballet de Lorraine
VICELAND: RISE – Sacred Water: Standing Rock Part I
RadioLoveFest

PLUS 
NYC Restaurant Week reservations now open

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Music, Dance, Performing Art

New York City Ballet – The Sleeping Beauty (thruFeb.19)
NYS/DHK Theater, Lincoln Center/ 7:30PM, $30+
“Awaken to true love’s potential in one of NYCB’s grandest productions. This enchanting full-length unveils the story of a charming prince on his quest to unbind a cursed princess, with aid from a cast of miraculous fairies and fanciful storybook characters.”

Brandon Uranowitz: The Songs of William Finn
Feinstein’s/54 Below, 254 W54th St./ 7PM, $35+
“A 2015 Tony nominee for An American in Paris, Uranowitz recently charmed audiences as the neurotic psychiatrist Mendel in the Broadway revival of William Finn’s Falsettos. In his solo Feinstein’s/54 Below debut, he shows how well he fits the Bill with more of Finn’s vibrant, stubborn, zig-zagging songs. Guest vocalists include Zachary Prince, Alysha Umphress and (on February 8 only) Stephanie J. Block.” (TONY)

Centre Choreographique National—Ballet de Lorraine
Joyce Theater / 7:30PM, $36+
“The contemporary dance company, a laboratory for new work based in Amiens, in northern France, makes its first visit to New York. Particularly interesting is “Sounddance” (on Program A), a furiously paced Merce Cunningham work from 1975 in which the dancers enter and exit the stage through a weird tentlike structure. Program B consists of a single evening-length dance cobbled together from the efforts of five choreographers whose identities are kept intentionally hidden, allowing the audience to experience the dance without preconceptions.” (NewYorker)
also Feb. 9-10, 8 p.m.; Feb. 11, 2 and 8 p.m.; Feb. 12, 2 p.m.

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

VICELAND: RISE – Sacred Water: Standing Rock Part I
David Rubenstein Atrium at Lincoln Center / 7:30PM, FREE
“The people of the Standing Rock Sioux Reservation of North and South Dakota are fighting to stop a pipeline from being built on their ancestral homeland. The Dakota Access Pipeline would snake its way across four states, bisecting sacred Indigenous sites and burial grounds along the route. The tribe fears that a leak could contaminate the Missouri River and spell disaster for the Great Sioux Nation. But youth are standing up in unprecedented numbers to preserve their way of life for future generations and to defend their sacred water. RISE heads to the Standing Rock Sioux Reservation to meet the Lakota and Dakota youth joining forces to protect their sacred water from the “black snake” set to invade their ancestral homeland.”

Elsewhere, but this always looks worth the detour:

RadioLoveFest (Feb.08-11)
Brooklyn Academy of Music; various times; $35 and up
“BAM and WNYC present their fourth annual celebration of the best in radio. Catch a live taping of public radio juggernauts like Wait Wait…Don’t Tell Me! and Snap Judgement, settle in for an evening of dance and stories with Monica Bill Barnes & Company and This American Life’s Ira Glass, talk politics with Pod Save America’s Jon Favreau, Jon Lovett and Tommy Vietor, or have some laughs with Maeve Higgins, Phoebe Robinson and other talented comics at Bullseye Comedy Night. This fest isn’t all talk: the schedule features two free concerts.” (TONY)

PLUS 

NYC Restaurant Week reservations now open
From Jan. 23 to Feb. 10, have your pick from 375 participating restaurants, with a three-course prix fixe lunch or dinner; lunches are $29, and dinners are $42, not including beverages, gratuities and taxes, a great deal for some of the city’s most popular spots…

This year there are 32 new restaurants participating, joining the array of restaurants that span 41 neighborhoods and four boroughs.
To see the full list, go to nycgo.com/restaurantweek.

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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 enjoyment and discovery.
See Below.

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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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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.
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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:

Fish280 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.
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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 Summer 2017).
◊ Order before May.31, 2017 and receive a bonus – 27 of my favorite casual dining places with free Wi-Fi.

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