NYC Events,”Only the Best” (01/03) + Museum Special Exhibitions: Manhattan’s WestSide

“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 better check the tab above: “NYC Events-January”
It’s the most comprehensive list of top events this month that you will find anywhere.
Carefully curated from “Only the Best” NYC event info on the the web, it’s a simply superb resource that will help you plan your NYC visit all over town, all through the month.
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Have time for only one NYC Event today? Do this:

CHRIS BOTTI 13th ANNUAL HOLIDAY RESIDENCY (thru Jan.07)
​Blue Note Jazz Club / 8PM, +10:30PM, $65-$125
“Botti, described by The Wall Street Journal as “a December institution in the Big Apple at the Blue Note, has called the club his home every December since 2005.

Since the release of his 2004 critically acclaimed CD When I Fall In Love, Chris Botti has become the largest-selling American instrumental artist. His success has crossed over to audiences usually reserved for pop music and his ongoing association with PBS has led to four #1 jazz albums, as well as multiple Gold, Platinum and Grammy Awards. Most recently, his latest album Impressions won the GRAMMY® for Best Pop Instrumental Album at the 2013 55th GRAMMY® Awards. Performing worldwide and selling more than four million albums, he has found a form of creative expression that begins in jazz and expands beyond the limits of any single genre.”

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5 OTHER TOP NYC EVENTS TODAY (see below for full listing)
>>Harold Mabern
>> Tosca
>>Ken Vandermark
>>Sarah Stiles: Squirrel Heart
>>MONTY ALEXANDER

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Music, Dance, Performing Arts

Harold Mabern
Smoke, 2751 Broadway, (betw105th/106th Sts.) /
A Memphis-born transplant who has retained the bluesy filigree of his home town in his fluent bop-and-beyond improvisations, the respected veteran Mabern will be inviting a slew of guests to the stage during this engagement, including the saxophonists Eric Alexander, Vincent Herring, and another Memphis hero, George Coleman, as well as the trombonists Steve Turre and Steve Davis.” (NewYorker)

Tosca (Dec 31 – May 12; next Jan.06, 8pm)
The Metropolitan Opera / 7:30, $
“Rivaling the splendor of Franco Zeffirelli’s set and costumes of the Napoleonic era, Sir David McVicar’s ravishing new production offers a splendid backdrop for two extraordinary sopranos sharing the title role of the jealous prima donna: Sonya Yoncheva and Anna Netrebko. Vittorio Grigolo and Marcelo Álvarez alternate in the role of Tosca’s revolutionary artist lover Cavaradossi, with Bryn Terfel, Michael Volle, and Željko Lučić as the depraved police chief Scarpia. Andris Nelsons conducts.”

Ken Vandermark (also Thur)
The Stone, Avenue C at 2nd St. / 8:30PM, $
“Becoming a MacArthur Fellow, in 1999, didn’t noticeably change the game plan for this far-seeing saxophonist and clarinet player; he still makes Chicago his home and remains as committed to the jazz avant-garde as he has been since his emergence in the early nineties. Vandermark’s New York residency finds collaborative space for such questing players as Kris Davis, Ikue Mori, and Paal Nilssen-Love.” (NewYorker)

Sarah Stiles: Squirrel Heart (also Jan.08)
Joe’s Pub at the Public Theater / 7PM, $25
“The hilariously off-kilter Sarah Stiles has conquered the hearts of audiences as sexy puppetmasters in Hand to God and Avenue Q and as Little Red Riding Hood in the Central Park revival of Into the Woods, which she stole in her basket. Her cabaret debut at Joe’s Pub is a good platform for her comic ingenuity.” (TONY)

MONTY ALEXANDER (Jan. 2-6)
at Birdland / 8:30 and 11PM, $40
“Mr. Alexander, a pianist, mingles the rhythms of his native Jamaica with his talents as a gospel-tinged jazz improviser. With his Harlem-Kingston Express, he brings together musicians versed in both reggae and straight-ahead jazz, creating a brew that’s danceable and lilting and often ramps up from hypnotic to electrifying.” (NYT-GIOVANNI RUSSONELLO)

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Let there be light!
Luminaries installation at Brookfield Place in the Winter Garden, a stunning holiday arrangement, comprising 650 LED lanterns hanging from the ceiling. Make sure to pack your skates and enjoy ice-skating next door, along the waterfront. (thru Jan.05)
AND
Erwin Redl’s Whiteout, a newly commissioned public art project, will light up in Madison Square Park. It consists of hundreds of transparent white spheres, each embedded with a white LED light, and suspended from a square grid of steel poles. The swaying sequence of light will be on display until April 2018.

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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, villagevanguard.com, 212-255-4037
Blue Note – 131 W3rd St. nr 6th ave. bluenotejazz.com, 212-475-8592
55 Bar – basement @55 Christopher St. nr 7th ave.S. 55bar.com, 212-929-9883
Mezzrow – basement @ 163 W10th St. nr 7th Ave. mezzrow.com,646-476-4346
Smalls – basement @ 183 W10th St. smallslive.com, 646-476-4346
Cornelia Street Cafe – UG, 29 Cornelia St. corneliastreetcafe.com, 212-989-9319

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

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 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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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:

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)

American Museum of Natural History:

Mummies (thru 1/7/18)
“For thousands of years, peoples around the world practiced mummification as a way of preserving and honoring their dead. Mummies brings you face to face with some of these ancient individuals and reveals how scientists are using modern technology to glean stunning details about them and their cultures. In Mummies, ancient remains from the Nile Valley of Africa and the Andes Mountains of South America will be on view, allowing visitors to connect with cultures from the distant past. Mummification, a more widespread practice than most think, was used not only for royal Egyptians but also for common people and even animals. Interactive touch tables let visitors virtually “unravel” or see inside mummies as they delve deep into the unique stories of the people or animals who lie within. Other parts of the exhibition showcase the latest isotopic and DNA testing being performed on mummies, and explain how these sophisticated analytical techniques are helping scientists discover important clues about long-vanished practices. Mummies was developed by The Field Museum, Chicago.”(NYCity Guide)

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For other selected Museum and Gallery Special Exhibitions see Recent Posts in right Sidebar dated 12/14 and 12/18.
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