Selected NYC Events (03/21) + Museum Special Exhibitions: Manhattan’s WestSide

Today’s Super 7 NYC Events > TUESDAY/MAR.21, 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-Mar.”

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

Sharp Jokes for Turbulent Times
‘Bassem Youssef: Revolution for Dummies’
at the Town Hall / 8PM, $45-$60
“Mr. Youssef is an Egyptian comedian who rocketed to global renown with the satirical news show “The Program,” a popular and often provocative Middle Eastern answer to Jon Stewart. He is now the host of “Democracy Handbook With Bassem Youssef,” on the American network Fusion. (Citing unspecified political pressure, Mr. Youssef ended “The Program” in 2014.) Here, he will present his new book, “Revolution for Dummies: Laughing Through the Arab Spring,” which recounts his time as a satirist working in a period of extraordinary turbulence in Egyptian politics.” (NYT-ELISE CZAJKOWSKI)

6 OTHER TOP NYC EVENTS TODAY (see below for full listing)
>>Hamburg Ballet / “Old Friends”
>>Symphonic Storyboards
>>James Arthur Lecture: Evolution of the Human Brain
>>“The People Speak”

Plus, don’t forget these Continuing Events:
>> New Directors / New Films festival
>>The Orchid Show


Music, Dance, Performing Arts

Wilco (also Mar.22)
Beacon Theatre / 7:30pm; $55–$89.50
“Jeff Tweedy and his band deliver four shows behind its tenth studio album, last year’s cheekily titled Schmilco. The record acts as a companion to 2015’s Star Wars—a more subdued collection of succinct pop songs that’s reminiscent of frontman Jeff Tweedy’s 2014 solo release, Sukierae. Expect a sprawling, deep set stuffed with classics like “Jesus, etc.” and “I’m The Man Who Loves You.” (TONY)

at Birdland, 315 W44th St./ 8:30PM, 11PM, $40
“Few musicians in jazz have generated as much mystified interest as Lennie Tristano, the pianist, composer and instructor who in the 1940s and ’50s helped create the sound known as cool jazz, but rarely emerged from behind the scenes. Here, five of today’s strongest improvisers celebrate Tristano’s legacy: the pianist Helen Sung, the alto saxophonists Greg Osby and Jaleel Shaw, the bassist Ben Allison and the drummer Matt Wilson.” (NYT- GIOVANNI RUSSONELLO)

Hamburg Ballet / “Old Friends” (Mar.21-25)
Joyce Theatre, 175 Eighth Ave., at 19th St./ 7:30PM, $51-$66
“For the past forty-four years, the American-born choreographer John Neumeier has been the director of Hamburg Ballet, creating work in his highly emotive, theatrical style. (Many know him for his “Lady of the Camellias,” which is in the repertory at American Ballet Theatre.) For the company’s first appearance at the Joyce—part of an American tour—it will perform “Old Friends,” a compendium of intimate scenes from Neumeier’s vast catalogue. It is set mostly to Chopin pieces, plus a Bach orchestral suite and several songs by Simon and Garfunkel.” (NewYorker)

Symphonic Storyboards (also Mar.22)
Rose Theater, Jazz @ Lincoln Center/ 7:30PM, $15+
“The Philharmonia Orchestra of New York presents the ultimate audio-visual experience, performing music by Wagner, Verdi and Rimsky-Korsakov with the accompaniment of original films by Daniel Brodie (projection designer to Kanye West and Mariah Carey) and the winners of PONY’s orchestral film competition.” (TONY)

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

James Arthur Lecture: Evolution of the Human Brain
American Museum of Natural History, Central Park West at 79th St./ 6PM, FREE
“Hearken to professor of evolutionary anthropology Dr. Brian Hare, an expert in the brains of bonobos, chimps, and dogs. He’ll use their inner lives to explain the evolution of the human brain, which he argues developed at least in part for friendliness. That insight in turn has important things to say about democracy, and “why institutions are critical to our future success.” (

Elsewhere, but this looks worth the detour:

“The People Speak”
BAM Howard Gilman Opera House, 30 Lafayette Ave., Bklyn/ 7:30PM, $20
Howard Zinn’s “A People’s History of the United States” has become one of the most infamous texts of our time, read by millions and currently the subject of a potential ban by Arkansas lawmakers. The author and historian, who died in 2010, sought to recast America’s story “from the perspective of the slaughtered and mutilated,” as he told the Times, criticizing Columbus, Roosevelt, and Lincoln as lustful for blood and power, as opposed to heroic. The book sparked a film, the 2009 documentary “The People Speak,” which Zinn narrated; at this live reading and performance, BAM and the Onassis Cultural Center gather actors, writers, and musicians to revive the stories of the marginalized Americans Zinn hoped to speak for. Performers include Staceyann Chin, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Deva Mahal, Aasif Mandvi, David Strathairn, Peter Sarsgaard, and more.” (NewYorker)

And don’t forget these continuing events:

New Directors / New Films festival (Mar.15 – 26)
Film Society of Lincoln Center and The Museum of Modern Art, @ various times
“Celebrating its 46th edition in 2017, the New Directors/
New Films festival introduces New York audiences to the work of emerging filmmakers from around the world. Throughout its rich, nearly half-century history, New Directors has brought previously little-known talents like Pedro Almódovar, Chantal Akerman, Hou Hsiao-hsien, Christopher Nolan, Laura Poitras, Spike Lee, and Kelly Reichardt to wider audiences. We hope you’ll join us in celebrating a group of filmmakers who represent the present and anticipate the future of cinema: daring artists whose work pushes the envelope and is never what you’d expect.”

This is a wonderful, only in New York, film festival that starts its first weekend. For full programming and ticketing information, please visit

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– Jazz Venues:
Many consider NYCity the Jazz capital of the world. Here are my favorite Jazz clubs, all on Manhattan’s WestSide. Check out who is playing tonight:

Greenwich Village
(5 are underground, classic jazz joints. all 6 are within walking distance of each other):
Village Vanguard – UG, 178 7th Ave. South,, 212-255-4037
Blue Note – 131 W3rd St. nr 6th ave., 212-475-8592
55 Bar – basement @55 Christopher St. nr 7th ave.S., 212-929-9883
Mezzrow – basement @ 163 W10th St. nr 7th Ave.,646-476-4346
Smalls – basement @ 183 W10th St., 646-476-4346
Cornelia Street Cafe – UG, 29 Cornelia St., 212-989-9319

Outside Greenwich Village:
Dizzy’s Club – Broadway @ 60th St. — / 212-258-9595
Birdland – 315 W44th St.(btw 8/9ave) — / 212-581-3080
Smoke Jazz Club – 2751 Broadway nr.106th St. — / 212-864-6662

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 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):


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:

 ‘TONY OURSLER: IMPONDERABLE’ (through April 16)
“This small exhibition is centered on a 90-minute film in which episodes from the history of spiritualist frauds and hoaxes are re-enacted by people in fanciful costumes while mystic flames, smoke and ectoplasmic phenomena come and go. At certain moments during “Imponderable,” you feel breezes wafting over you and hear loud thumping under the theater’s risers. The crudeness of these effects is part of the generally comical spirit. It’s all about the confusion between illusion and reality to which human beings seem to be congenitally susceptible.” (Johnson)

And a special pat on the back to MOMA, who is now displaying art from the seven countries affected by Trump’s travel ban.

“Trump’s ban against refugees from seven Muslim-majority nations has sparked acts of defiance in NYC, from demonstrations across town, to striking taxicab drivers at JFK to Middle Eastern bodega owners closing their shops in protest. Recently, the Museum Of Modern added its two cents by bringing out artworks it owns from the affected countries, and hanging them prominently within the galleries usually reserved for 19th- and 20th-century artworks from Europe and the United States. Paintings by Picasso and Matisse, for example, were removed to make way for pieces by Tala Madani (from Iran), Ibrahim El-Salahi (from Sudan) and architect Zaha Hadid (from Iraq). The rehanging, which was unannounced, aims to create a symbolic welcome that repudiates Trump by creating a visual dialog between the newly added works and the more familiar objects from MoMA’s permanent collection.” (TONY)

 Whitney Museum of American Art:

“Fast Forward: Painting from the 1980s presents a focused look at painting from this decade with works drawn entirely from the Museum’s collection.

In the 1980s, painting recaptured the imagination of the contemporary art world against a backdrop of expansive change. An unprecedented number of galleries appeared on the scene, particularly in downtown New York. Groundbreaking exhibitions—that blurred distinctions between high and low art—were presented at alternative and artist-run spaces. New mediums, including video and installation art, were on the rise. Yet despite the growing popularity of photography and video, many artists actively embraced painting, freely exploring its bold physicality and unique capacity for expression and innovation.

The exhibition includes work by artists often identified with this explosive period—Jean-Michel Basquiat, Sherrie Levine, David Salle, and Julian Schnabel—as well as by several lesser-known painters. These artists explored the traditions of figuration and history painting, and offered new interpretations of abstraction. Many addressed fundamental questions about artmaking in their work, while others took on political issues including AIDS, feminism, gentrification, and war. In the face of a media-saturated environment, artists in the 1980s recommitted to painting. Far from dead, painting came to represent an important intersection between new ways of seeing and a seemingly traditional way of making art.”

For other selected Museum and Gallery Special Exhibitions see Recent Posts in right sidebar dated 03/19 and 03/17.

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