NYC Events,”Only the Best” (05/13) + GallerySpecialExhibits: Chelsea

“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-MAY”
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:

Katharine McPhee & “Waitress” Perform Sara Bareilles
The Green Room, 42, 570 10th Ave./ 7PM, +9:30PM, $30-$200
“NBC’s “Smash” star Katharine McPhee finally got to make her real-life Broadway debut as the lead in “Waitress,” featuring the music of Sara Bareilles. Now, as a one-night-only fundraiser for Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS, McPhee and the cast of “Waitress” appear at The Green Room 42 to perform a concert of Bareilles’ hits, with two shows. VIP packages, including a pre-show Meet & Greet with McPhee, are available.” (MetroNY)

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7 OTHER TOP NYC EVENTS TODAY (see below for full listing)
>>TRIBUTE TO ROBBINS
>> EDDIE HENDERSON QUINTET
>> Bang on a Can Marathon
>> Linda Eder
>>Fred Hersch Duos
>> LIMÓN DANCE COMPANY
>> Japan Day
Continuing Events
>> Hudson Yards Shed
>> Red Bull Music Festival
>> Mad. Sq. Eats
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Music, Dance, Performing Arts

TRIBUTE TO ROBBINS
New York City Ballet (May 5 – 13)
NYS Theater, Lincoln Center / 3PM, $35+
“A fitting gift to Jerome Robbins, the Company will debut two world premieres animated by the master choreographer’s legacy, including a Peck piece with Leonard Bernstein music. Accompanying the festivities are two lighthearted ballets: Circus Polka features a sprightly carousel of young students as they prance at the beck and call of a dapper ringmaster, and The Four Seasons translates Verdi’s vibrant melodies into frosty flirtation, springtime awakening, sultry revelry, and autumnal bacchanal.”

EDDIE HENDERSON QUINTET
at Smoke / 7, 9 and 10:30 p.m., $40
“A veteran trumpeter whose deft feel and plush sound made him a central figure in the worlds of jazz-funk and hard-bop in the 1970s, Mr. Henderson has a fine new album, “Be Cool,” out on Smoke Sessions, the label associated with this uptown club. Mr. Henderson appears here with the alto saxophonist Donald Harrison, the bassist Essiet Okon Essiet and the drummer Mike Clark — all of whom are featured on the album — and the pianist Peter Zak.” (NYT-GIOVANNI RUSSONELLO)

Bang on a Can Marathon
NYU Skirball Center / 12PM, FREE
“Hallelujah! The annual Bang on a Can Marathon returns to Manhattan — following a dispiriting Brooklyn edition — with 22 accessibly adventurous performances by retro-modernist masters, ultra-contemporary cadets, and left-field wunderkinder spread over ten hours. Minimalist icon Terry Riley will be on hand for a rare performance of his Autodreamographical Tales with house band the Bang on a Can All-Stars and his guitarist son, Gyan. Other highlights include Russian composer Galina Ustvolskaya’s lumbering Symphony No. 2 (“True and Eternal Bliss”); Vicky Chow performing Michael Gordon’s dizzyingly difficult solo-piano work Sonatra; Frederic Rzewski’s troubling and timely response to the Attica Prison riots, Coming Together; Canadian composer Nicole Lizée’s heady mash-up of Hitchcock, Cage, prog-rock, and turntablism; and David Lang’s recently released the day, performed by cellist Maya Beiser and the Wooster Group’s Kate Valk.” (Richard Gehr, VillageVoice)

Linda Eder (also May 14)
Feinstein’s/54 Below / 7PM, $90+
“Linda Eder—the Star Search songstress turned Broadway and concert star—has never been known for the subtlety of her approach, which can be boiled down to two steps: (1) Stand, and (2) Sing. But gee whiz, the lady can really belt a number. Her current set includes selections from her latest solo album, If You See Me.” (TONY)

Fred Hersch Duos
Jazz Standard, 116 E. 27th St./ 9:30PM, $35
“When it comes to intimate duets, the pianist Hersch, a brilliant soloist and a dynamic trio head, is also the perfect host. In what has become a highlight of the jazz year, Hersch will find common ground with special guests; this year’s partners include the clarinettist Anat Cohen, the singer Kate McGarry, and the bassist and vocalist Esperanza Spalding.” (NewYorker)

LIMÓN DANCE COMPANY (May 8-13)
at the Joyce Theater / 2PM, +8PM, $45+
“The company returns to the Joyce with a revival of José Limón’s “Missa Brevis,” an emotionally stirring work from 1958 set to Zoltán Kodály’s “Missa Brevis in Tempore Belli.” Joining the group are the guest dancers Carolina Avendano and Terry Springer, of Venezuela’s Coreoarte, along with Kristen Foote and Julian Nichols. The program also includes Limón’s “The Unsung,” performed by an all-male cast; “The Body Is a House Without Walls,” for an all-female cast by the troupe’s artistic director, Colin Connor; and three short works by the choreographers Rosie Herrera, Adam Barruch and Yin Yue.” (NYT)

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

Japan Day
Central Park, Bandshell area / from 9:30am
“Make the most of a sunny afternoon in Central Park at the annual Japan Day, an all-day celebration of Japanese culture that unfolds under trees in full bloom. The party starts with a 5K run at 8am. If that’s a little early for you, hit the activity tents and live stage, which get going at 9:30am. Past events have offered Kabuki-style face painting, Japanese taiko drumming, lessons in calligraphy and origami, karate and musical performances and, of course, mouthwatering ramen, okonomiyaki and other traditional Japanese bites. Gotta try ’em all!” (TONY)

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Continuing Events

Hudson Yards Shed (May 01-13)

“Hudson Yards continues to transform before our eyes with an ever-growing list of new sites, such as Vessel, the beehive-like public landmark that’s New York’s answer to the Eiffel Tower. But the largest and most exciting cultural contribution to the far West Side is the Shed, a multi-arts performance venue opening in spring 2019. To provide a sneak peak of what’s to come, the entertainment center presents a free art series, just a block away from its home base. Dubbed A Prelude to the Shed, the two-week event is being held at a structure that has been designed to change fluidly as dancers and guests move about.

Aside from exhibiting “A Stroll Through the Fun Palace,” which showcases the archives of Cedric Price (an inspiration to the architects of the Shed), the main event boasts a killer lineup of entertainers for the evening performances. On select nights, check out R&B singer Abra, electronic-music producer and performer Arca, and the New York rapper-singer Azealia Banks.

Beyond the lit musical performances, there’s plenty of art and dance to catch, too. Artist Tino Sehgal’s This variation seamlessly intertwines throughout the day with ​William Forsythe’s new work, ​titled​ Pas de Deux Cent Douze​. There’s also ​D.R.E.A.M. Ring dance battles organized by dancer Reggie “Regg Roc” Gray​. Chances are, you’ll feel encouraged to bust a move and shake your tail feather along with them—especially if you hit the grab-and-go café for beer and wine beforehand.” (TONY)

Mad. Sq. Eats (May 07-31)
General Worth Square (5th Ave btw 25/26 St.) / near Madison Square Park
11AM-9PM; FREE
“Twice a year, this outdoor food fest brings buzzworthy bites from the city’s best restaurants to Worth Square in the Flatiron District. Highlights include Roberta’s sensational pizza, MeltKraft grilled cheese sandwiches and cheesesteaks by the Truffleist.” (TONY)

“Mad. Sq. Eats brings the diverse flavors of the city’s best restaurants and food entrepreneurs to Worth Square, a prime location in the heart of New York’s historic Flatiron District. The highly anticipated bi-annual event draws hungry crowds of neighborhood residents, workers, and tourists who enjoy this unique opportunity to savor offerings from buzzworthy eateries.”

2018 Vendor List
Burger & Lobster / Jicama / Renegade Lemonade /
the Truffleist / Mayhem Sandwiches / Gotham Poke & Hawaiian Kitchen / Bao by Kaya / La Sonrisa / Frida’s Favorites / Roberta’s /
Duck Season / Daa! Dumplings / Mr. Bing / Baked Cheese Haus / Chick’NCone / Arancini Bros / Top Hops Beer Shop / CousCous /
Melt Ice cream Sandwiches / Ice & Vice / Palenque Arepas /
Coney Shack / Korilla / Casa Toscana / Enfes NYC

“The innovative Red Bull Music Festival (May 03-25) returns for the sixth year with a lineup as diverse as the city itself. This Friday, catch a performance by cult musician John Maus at Deno’s Wonder Wheel, Saturday, see a conversation with Harry Belafonte, and on Sunday, see Brooklyn-based experimental R&B and gospel artist Serpentwithfeet in the Refectory at the High Line Hotel. Beginning Friday, you can also catch an exhibition by hip-hop pioneer and cult artist RAMMΣLLZΣΣ.” (NYMagazine)

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♦ Before making final plans, we suggest you call the venue to confirm ticket availability, plus dates and times, as schedules are subject to change.
♦ NYCity, with a population of  8.6 million, had a record 63 million visitors last year and was TripAdvisor’s Traveler’s Choice Top U.S. Destination for 2018 – awesome! BUT quality shows draw crowds. Try to reserve seats for these top NYC events in advance, even if just earlier on the day of performance.

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Bonus NYC 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
Joe’s Pub @ Public Theater – 425 Lafayette St., joespub.com, 212-967-7555
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
Another outrageous rent increase by a rapacious NYC landlord closed BBKing’s as of April 29 – How Sad.
Le Poisson Rouge – 158 Bleecker St., lepoissonrouge.com, 212-505-3474
and one more, not quite WestSide
Bowery Ballroom – 6 Delancey St. boweryballroom.com,

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 discovery and enjoyment.
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NYCity Vacation Travel Guide Video (Expedia):

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Chelsea Art Gallery District*

Chelsea is the heart of the NYCity contemporary art scene. Home to more than 300 art galleries, the Rubin Museum, the Joyce Theater and The Kitchen performance spaces, there is no place like it anywhere in the world. Come here to browse free exhibitions by world-renowned artists and those unknowns waiting to be discovered in an art district that is concentrated between West 18th and West 27th Streets, and 10th and 11th Avenues. Afterwards stop in the Chelsea Market, stroll on the High Line, or rest up at one of the many cafes and bars and discuss the fine art.

Here are two exhibitions the New Yorker likes:

Erin Shirreff   (thru May 15)

“Negative space—and outer space, too—is as assertive as physical form in the work of this New York-based artist, which toggles between photographic and sculptural, flat and deep, moving and static. The centerpiece is a wall-filling video, entitled “Son,” in which colors shift slowly around a central black circle; it was inspired by the recent solar eclipse, a moment when the sun resembled a void. On other walls, large crescents and slivers of printed aluminum are arranged in deep frames; while adamantly abstract, they could pass for dioramas of phases of the moon. With speckled cyanotypes printed on pictures of sculptures torn out of books, Shirreff seems to suggest that her own spatial investigations are simply part of a continuum—a reminder that even the stillest object is also on the move, thanks to the passage of time.” Sikkema Jenkins  530 W. 22nd St.

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For a listing of 25 essential galleries in the Chelsea Art Gallery District, organized by street, which enables you to create your own Chelsea Art Gallery crawl, see the Chelsea Gallery Guide (nycgo.com) Or check out TONY magazine’s list of the “Best Chelsea Galleries” and click through to see what’s on view.

*Now plan your own gallery crawl, but better to plan your visits for Tuesday through Saturday; most galleries are closed Sunday and Monday.

TIP: After your gallery tour, stop in Ovest at 513W27th St. for Aperitivo Italiano (Happy Hour on steroids). Discuss all the great art you have viewed over a drink and a very tasty selection of FREE appetizers (M-F, 5-8pm). OR try the NYT recommendation: “When you’re done, adjourn to the newly renovated Bottino , the Chelsea art world’s unofficial canteen on 10th Avenue (btw 24/25 St.) “

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For other selected Museum and Gallery Special Exhibitions see recent posts in right sidebar dated 05/11 and 05/09.

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