Selected NYC Events (02/26) + Today’s Featured Pub (Greenwich Village)

Today’s Super 7 NYC Events>SUNDAY/FEB.26, 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:

Jazz Standard, / 7:30PM, + 9:30PM, $30
“Mr. Coltrane has a warbling sound that’s as thick as ink on the tenor and soprano saxophones. He’s a passionate, whole-body player, but his impulse is to obscure: His stippled, scattering tunes don’t give you a lot of melodies or rhythms to latch on to. Instead they immerse you in his disposition: poised, meditative, bold. Mr. Coltrane appears here with Adam Rogers on guitar, Dezron Douglas on bass and E. J. Strickland on drums.” (NYT-GIOVANNI RUSSONELLO)

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

Kelly Burke: Love for Sale
The Music of Dexter Gordon: A Celebration
Leslie Jones
The Big Oscars Quiz Thing
An Evening with Wolf Blitzer

Plus Continuing Events:
The Orchid Show


Music, Dance, Performing Arts

NEW YORK CITY BALLET (through Feb. 26)
at NYS/DHK Theater, Lincoln Center / 3PM, $30+
“The company wraps up its winter season with one program paying homage to the choreographer Jerome Robbins and another, “Broadway to Ballet,” that celebrates Richard Rodgers. In the case of Robbins, the program is a glorious trifecta: “Glass Pieces,” set to Philip Glass’s energizing composition; “Moves,” a mesmerizing ballet performed to silence; and “The Concert,” his delightful comic ballet. The Rodgers program features Christopher Wheeldon’s sweeping “Carousel (a Dance),” a distillation of the Rodgers and Hammerstein classic, as well as Peter Martins’s “Thou Swell.” To be frank, it’s less than swell. But stick it out for Balanchine’s “Slaughter on Tenth Avenue,” which was originally created for the 1936 Rodgers and Hart musical “On Your Toes.” It keeps you there, still.” (NYT-GIA KOURLAS)

Kelly Burke: Love for Sale
Huron Club, 17 Vandam St./ 5PM, $40
image-1“English singer-actor Burke makes her U.S. debut in a “cabaret-play” set in the 1930s, featuring songs by Kurt Weill and others. The winning Charlie Alterman costars as her pianist.” (TONY)

“Developed for London’s historic Wilton’s Music Hall, and following sell-out performances in London and Edinburgh, Love for Sale is a 1930’s cabaret celebrating the music of Kurt Weill, Cole Porter and their contemporaries. Featuring OffWestEnd Award nominee Kelly Burke and Broadway musical director Charlie Alterman (Pippin, Next to Normal).
“A heartfelt, stylish show – as intelligent as it is decadent” The List

The Music of Dexter Gordon: A Celebration (LAST DAY)
Dizzy’s Club, Broadway at 60th St./ 7:30PM, 9:30PM, $45
“Gordon enjoyed an unexpected late-career resurgence with his Oscar-nominated appearance in the 1986 film “Round Midnight,” but he first made his mark decades earlier, as the tenor saxophonist who best embodied Charlie Parker’s bebop message. Gordon’s music continued to evolve from there, with influential results, and this tribute will touch on various aspects of his illustrious catalogue, including work from his albums “Homecoming” and “Sophisticated Giant,” from the late nineteen-seventies. Leading the band—which includes the saxophonist Abraham Burton—on the first two nights will be Gordon’s confederate, the great hard-bop drummer Louis Hayes.” (NewYorker)

Leslie Jones (LAST DAY)
Carolines, 1626 Broadway / 7:30PM, 10PM, $65.50,
“Whether you know and love this comedian from “Saturday Night Live” or follow her religiously on Twitter, don’t miss this opportunity to see the hilarious Leslie Jones in person.” (AMNY)

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

The Big Oscars Quiz Thing
Le Poisson Rouge, 158 Bleecker St./ 5:30pm; $15
“Grab your movie-buff friends and head to Le Poisson Rouge for a night of film trivia from The Big Quiz Thing. The night kicks off at 5:30pm with a multimedia trivia show packed with Oscars factoids. Gear up to compete for improv classes, Insomnia cookies, Videology screening passes and more. Whether you win or lose, watch all the red-carpet and awards-show action while munching on goodies from the full food and drink menu, with chances for extra prizes from impromptu trivia during commercials.” (TONY)

An Evening with Wolf Blitzer
Temple Emanu-El, 1 E. 65th St./ 5PM, FREE
After more than 40 years interviewing some of the world’s most influential and powerful people, Wolf Blitzer still gets one question more than any other: “Is that your real name?”

Join Wolf Blitzer, CNN’s Lead Political Anchor and anchor of Wolf and The Situation Room, as he discusses his heritage and unique experience exploring his past in CNN’s short documentary series, Roots.

In his episode of Roots, Blitzer reflects on his lineage, heritage and childhood growing up in Buffalo, New York and documents a visit to Israel, including his moving experience to Jerusalem’s Yad Vesham. Blitzer also recounts his family history during the Holocaust.

And don’t forget these continuing events:

HARKNESS DANCE FESTIVAL (Feb. 24 through March 25)
at the 92nd Street Y / 8PM, $25+

TODAY (3PM): Harkness Dance Festival/Dance Talk: Patricia Wilde, George Balanchine and the Rise of New York City Ballet
Joel Lobenthal, associate editor of Ballet Review and former chief critic for the New York Sun, gives us insight into the life of Patricia Wilde, grande dame of ballet, and the golden age of the New York City Ballet.

“This five-week festival celebrates its 23rd season with “Then, Now & Next,” a series highlighting several companies in classic and new works. New York Theater Ballet, a chamber group led by Diana Byer, who formed the group in 1978, is up first with the program “Legends and Visionaries,” scheduled for Friday at 8 p.m. and Saturday at 4 and 8 p.m. It spotlights two works by Martha Clarke, the pas de trois from “The Garden of Villandry” (1979) and “Nocturne” (1978), a portrait of an aging ballerina. The evening also includes three ballets by Antony Tudor: “Soirée Musicale” (1938), “Les Mains Gauches” (1951) and the pas de deux from “The Tragedy of Romeo and Juliet” (1943). In keeping with the sensibilities of Mr. Tudor, a choreographer of supreme restraint, it’s subtle, not showy. And at 3 p.m. on Sunday, the festival dives into the world of George Balanchine with “Dance Talk: Patricia Wilde, George Balanchine and the Rise of New York City Ballet.” (NYT-Gia Kourlas)

The Orchid Show (thru April 09)
New York Botanical Garden, 2900 Southern Blvd., the Bronx.
“This edition of the New York Botanical Garden’s annual Orchid Show, now in its fifteenth year, focusses on Thailand’s rich history and the flower’s cultural status as one of the country’s leading exports. Held in the Enid A. Haupt Conservatory, the display features blooming orchids by the hundreds in lush tropical environments, leading into an arched installment styled in the manner of a traditional Thai pavilion. The schedule includes several panel discussions, tours, and after-hours viewings with music and cocktails.” (NewYorker)

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.,, 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
Town Hall – 123 W43rd St.,, 212-997-6661
B.B. King’s Blues Bar – 237W42nd St.,, 212-997-2144
Bowery Ballroom – 6 Delancey St.,
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 discovery and enjoyment.
See Below.

♦ 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):

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.

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.
“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.

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.

“3 Good Eating places” focuses on a quick bite, what I call “Fine Fast Food – NYCity Style”
No reservations needed.
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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