NYC Events,”Only the Best” (06/16) + Museum Special Exhibitions: Manhattan’s 5th Avenue

“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, check the tab above: NYC Events-JUNE”
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:

RHIANNON GIDDENS
at Rumsey Playfield, Central Park/ 7 p.m., FREE
“Few people make recasting long-overlooked parts of American musical history more fun than Rhiannon Giddens, a singer, songwriter, banjoist and fiddler whose work is usually characterized as Americana or folk. Her music exposes the racial fault lines of those genres by reclaiming parts of them — like the banjo itself — that are now associated with white music despite their origins in black music; her omnivorous sourcing shows through in covers that include the Staples Singers, Patsy Cline and Blu Cantrell’s “Hit ’Em Up Style.” But in the process, the 2017 MacArthur Foundation Fellow takes an aesthetic that’s long been the stuff of museum archives and makes it sound vibrant, danceable and brand-new.” (NYT-NATALIE WEINER)

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7 OTHER TOP NYC EVENTS TODAY (see below for full listing)
>> BargeMusic
>> Ethan Iverson and Ron Carter
>> American Ballet Theatre
>> Joe Lovano and Dave Douglas
>> PHILADANCO
>> Coney Island Mermaid Parade
>> Jazz Age Lawn Party
Continuing Events
>> RIVER TO RIVER FESTIVAL
>> Othello
>> ‘THE LET GO’
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Music, Dance, Performing Arts

BargeMusic
“Music in Motion” Series — a one hour performance, including a Q & A session with the musicians (no intermission)
Fulton Ferry Landing, near the Brooklyn Bridge in Brooklyn/ 4PM, FREE
(take the A or C train to High Street station, Brooklyn.)
“Concert at the coolest classical music concert location in NYC.
Classical music on a boat with an intimate and romantic setting and beautiful view of New York City. Program and musicians TBA.” (ClubFreeTime)

Ethan Iverson and Ron Carter (June 15-17)
Mezzrow, 163 W. 10th St./ 8PM, +9:30PM, $20-$25
With older jazz giants leaving us with unfortunate regularity, it must be quite a charge for the historically minded pianist Iverson (late of the Bad Plus) to collaborate with surviving heroes. Here he duets with the masterly bassist Carter, whose work with Miles Davis and on the reported two-thousand-plus recordings he’s contributed to has made him a living legend.” (Steve Futterman, New Yorker)

American Ballet Theatre (thru July 7)
Metropolitan Opera House / 7:30PM, $22+
“The company wraps up the weekend with Kenneth MacMillan’s sumptuous production of “Romeo and Juliet” before moving on to “Swan Lake” starting on Monday. Yes, it’s true that this “Swan Lake” is in need of an overhaul, but there are some mighty dancers cast as Odette/Odile, among them Isabella Boylston, Devon Teuscher and Misty Copeland. And for the matinee on June 20, the powerful, statuesque Christine Shevchenko makes her New York debut as Odette/Odile opposite the charismatic James Whiteside.” (NYT-Gia Kourlas)

Joe Lovano and Dave Douglas (June 12-17)
Village Vanguard, 178 Seventh Ave. S., at 11th St./ 8:30PM, +10:30PM, $35
“A shared passion for expansive jazz and the music of Wayne Shorter brought together two questing figures—the trumpeter Douglas and the saxophonist Lovano—resulting in the 2015 recording “Sound Prints,” and, subsequently, an occasional working ensemble. Linda May Han Oh, on bass, Joey Baron, on drums, and Lawrence Fields on piano, form the kind of enviable support team that could hold its own even without these illustrious co-leaders.” (NewYorker)

PHILADANCO (June 12-17)
at the Joyce Theater / 8 p.m., $30+
“Since 1970, the Philadelphia Dance Company, known as Philadanco, has used dance to address social issues that affect people of color in this country. The company returns to the Joyce with a typically poignant and powerful program of four works: “Folded Prism” by Thang Dao; “A Movement for Five” about the Central Park Five, by Dawn Marie Bazemore, a company alumna; “New Fruit” about the cycle of racism and violence in the United States by the resident choreographer Christopher L. Huggins; and a piece in which the current artist in residence Tommie-Waheed Evans is said to weave “spirituality and sorrow.” (NYT-Brian Schaefer)

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

Jazz Age Lawn Party (also June 17)
Governors Island / 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., $35+
“An event on many bucket lists, the first of two Jazz Age Lawn Party weekends is here. This Prohibition era-inspired two-day event on Governors Island includes live music, dance lessons, dance contests, vintage portraits, a 1920s motorcar exhibition, lawn croquet, food and drink. Tips: Bring your own seating, outside food allowed (though alcohol is not), on-site drink purchases are cash-only, and period dress is encouraged. An encore weekend is scheduled for Aug. 25-26.” (amNY)

Elsewhere, but this is too much fun, worth the detour:
Coney Island Mermaid Parade
The mostly nautical but sometimes naughty Coney Island Mermaid Parade unofficially kicks off the local beach bathing season. The parade of some 1,500 costumed participants, marching bands, drill teams, floats and antique cars is followed by a beach opening ceremony and then the Mermaid Parade Ball, 5-11 p.m. at Kitchen 21’s Rooftop Lounge at West 21st St. on the boardwalk. Rain or shine. (Free, parade kicks off at 1 p.m., at West 21st and Surf Avenue, Coney Island, coneyisland.com) (amNY)

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Continuing Events

RIVER TO RIVER FESTIVAL at various locations (June 15-24).
“The Lower Manhattan Cultural Council presents this festival, now in its 17th year, with free dance, music, theater and visual art shows at downtown sites. Of the dance highlights, the most dramatic is likely to be an appearance by It’s Showtime NYC!, a company of street dancers, performing on the steps of Federal Hall (June 18-22). Other notable events include Catherine Galasso’s “Of Granite and Glass,” a site-specific dance inspired by Giovanni Boccaccio’s “The Decameron” at the Winter Garden (June 15-17); Enrico D. Wey’s “silent :: partner,” an exploration of memory and memorialization held inside Federal Hall (June 15-17); and Cori Olinghouse’s “Grandma,” a look at aging and the ghosts of the American South. The setting? A Lower Manhattan office building (June 16-17).” (NYT-Gia Kourlas)

Othello (May28-Jun24)
Shakespeare Delacorte Theater, Central Park / 8PM, FREE* (the Bard is off on Mondays)
“Ruben Santiago-Hudson (Jitney) directs the first offering of the Public Theater’s 2018 season of Shakespeare in the Park: an account of the Bard’s fast-paced tragedy of jealousy and misplaced trust, in which a villain preys on the insecurities of a Moorish war hero married to a white woman. The cast is headed by Chukwudi Iwuji as Othello, Corey Stoll as Iago and Heather Lind as Desdemona.”
*tickets are free (two per person) and may be picked up after noon on the day of performance (be prepared for long lines.) Some tickets are also distributed via online lottery.
See TONY’s complete guide to Shakespeare in the Park tickets for details.

‘THE LET GO’ (June 7-July 1)
at the Park Avenue Armory
“This large-scale, site-specific multiweek event is masterminded by the interdisciplinary artist Nick Cave, who transforms the armory into a vivid dance landscape in which spectators are invited to do just what the title says they should: let go. Within this dance hall environment are performances, an installation in the form of a Mylar sculpture, dance-based encounters and music provided by D.J.s. For some programs, Mr. Cave works with the choreographer Francesca Harper; for others, there will be dancing by community groups. On June 26, as part of “An Evening of Artistic Responses: The Let Go,” the musician Nona Hendryx, the vocalist and artist Helga Davis, Ms. Harper and Reggie (Regg Roc) Gray and his company, D.R.E.A.M. Ring, respond to the installation, which references issues of social justice, with site-specific performances.” (NYT-Gia Kourlas)

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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 events– Jazz Clubs:
Many consider NYCity the Jazz capital of the world. My favorite Jazz Clubs, all on Manhattan’s WestSide, feature top talent every night of the week.
Hit the Hot Link and 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. So., villagevanguard.com, 212-255-4037 (1st 8:30)
Blue Note – 131 W3rd St. nr 6th ave. bluenotejazz.com, 212-475-8592 (1st set 8pm)
55 Bar – basement @55 Christopher St. nr 7th ave.S. 55bar.com, 212-929-9883 (1st 7pm)
Mezzrow – basement @ 163 W10th St. nr 7th Ave. mezzrow.com,646-476-4346 (1st 8)
Smalls – basement @ 183 W10th St. smallslive.com, 646-476-4346 (1st set 7:30pm)
Cornelia Street Cafe – UG, 29 Cornelia St. corneliastreetcafe.com, 212-989-9319 (6pm)

Outside Greenwich Village:
Dizzy’s Club – Broadway @ 60th St. — jazz.org/dizzys / 212-258-9595 (1st set 7:30pm)
Birdland – 315 W44th St.(btw 8/9ave) — birdlandjazz.com / 212-581-3080 (1st 8:30pm)
Smoke Jazz Club – 2751 Broadway nr.106th St. — smokejazz.com/ 212-864-6662 (7pm)

Special Mention:
Caffe Vivaldi – 32 Jones St. nr Bleecker St. — caffevivaldi.com / 212-691-7538 (1st 7pm)
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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NYCity Vacation Travel Guide Video (Expedia):

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WHAT’S ON VIEW
These are My Fave Special Exhibitions @ MUSEUMS / Manhattan’s Fifth Avenue
(See the New York Times Arts Section for listings of all museum exhibitions,
and also see the expanded reviews of these exhibitions)

‘SCENES FROM THE COLLECTION’  “After a surgical renovation to its grand pile on Fifth Avenue, the Jewish Museum has reopened its third-floor galleries with a rethought and refreshed display of its permanent collection, which intermingles modern and contemporary art, by Jews and gentiles alike — Mark Rothko, Lee Krasner, Nan Goldin, Cindy Sherman, and the excellent young Nigerian draftswoman Ruby Onyinyechi Amanze — with 4,000 years of Judaica. The works are shown in a nimble, non-chronological suite of galleries, and some of its century-spanning juxtapositions are bracing; others feel reductive, even dilletantish. But always, the Jewish Museum conceives of art and religion as interlocking elements of a story of civilization, commendably open to new influences and new interpretations.” (Farago) 212-423-3200, thejewishmuseum.org

Museum of the City of New York

NY AT ITS CORE (ongoing)
“Ten years in the making, New York at Its Core tells the compelling story of New York’s rise from a striving Dutch village to today’s “Capital of the World.” The exhibition captures the human energy that drove New York to become a city like no other and a subject of fascination the world over. Entertaining, inspiring, important, and at times bemusing, New York City “big personalities,” including Alexander Hamilton, Walt Whitman, Boss Tweed, Emma Goldman, JP Morgan, Fiorello La Guardia, Jane Jacobs, Jay-Z, and dozens more, parade through the exhibition. Visitors will also learn the stories of lesser-known New York personalities, like Lenape chieftain Penhawitz and Italian immigrant Susie Rocco. Even animals like the horse, the pig, the beaver, and the oyster, which played pivotal roles in the economy and daily life of New York, get their moment in the historical spotlight. Occupying the entire first floor in three interactive galleries (Port City, 1609-1898, World City, 1898-2012, and Future City Lab) New York at Its Core is shaped by four themes: money, density, diversity, and creativity. Together, they provide a lens for examining the character of the city, and underlie the modern global metropolis we know today. mcny.org” (NYCity Guide)

and you should be sure to check out these special exhibitions at that little museum on Fifth Ave., The Metropolitan Museum of Art
(open 7 days /week, AND always Pay What You Wish for NewYorkers)

‘THE FACE OF DYNASTY: ROYAL CRESTS FROM WESTERN CAMEROON’ (through Sept. 3). “Upstairs, the Michelangelos continue to knock ‘em dead; downstairs, in the African wing, a show of just four commanding wooden crowns constitutes a blockbuster of its own. These massive wooden crests — in the form of stylized human faces with vast vertical brows — served as markers of royal power among the Bamileke peoples of the Cameroonian grasslands, and the Met’s recent acquisition of an 18th-century specimen is joined here by three later examples, each featuring sharply protruding cheeks, broadly smiling mouths, and brows incised with involute geometric patterns. Ritual objects like these were decisive for the development of western modernist painting, and a Cameroonian crest was even shown at MoMA in the 1930s, as a “sculpture” divorced from ethnography. But these crests had legal and diplomatic significance as well as aesthetic appeal, and their anonymous African creators had a political understanding of art not so far from our own.” (Farago)

‘HEAVENLY BODIES: FASHION AND THE CATHOLIC IMAGINATION’  (through Oct. 8). “Let us pray. After last year’s stark exhibition of Rei Kawakubo’s irregular apparel, the Met Costume Institute is back in blockbuster mode with this three-part blowout on the influence of Catholicism on haute couture of the last century. The trinity of fashion begins downstairs at the Met with the exceptional loans of vestments from the Vatican; upstairs are gowns fit for angels in heaven (by Lanvin, Thierry Mugler, Rodarte) or angels fallen to earth (such as slinky Versace sheaths garlanded with crosses). The scenography at the Met is willfully operatic — spotlights, choir music — which militates against serious thinking about fashion and religion, but up at the Cloisters, by far the strongest third of the show, you can commune more peacefully with an immaculate Balenciaga wedding gown or a divine Valentino gown embroidered with Cranac’s Adam and Eve.” (Farago)

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Museum Mile is a section of Fifth Avenue which contains one of the densest displays of culture in the world. Eight museums can be found along this section of Fifth Avenue:
• 105th Street – El Museo del Barrio (closed Sun-Mon)*
• 103rd Street – Museum of the City of New York (open 7 days /week)
•  92nd Street – The Jewish Museum (closed Wed) (Sat FREE) (Thu 5-8 PWYW)
•  91st Street  –  Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum (open 7 days /week)
•  89th Street –  National Academy Museum (closed Mon-Tue)
•  88th Street –  Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum (closed Thu) (Sat 6-8 PWYW)
•  86th Street –  Neue Galerie New York (closed Tue-Wed) (Fri 6-8 FREE)
Last, but certainly not least, America’s premier museum
•  82nd Street – The Metropolitan Museum of Art (open 7 days /week)*
*always Pay What You Wish (PWYW) for NewYorkers

Although technically not part of the Museum Mile, the Frick Collection (closed Mon) (Wed 2-6pm PWYW; First Friday each month (exc Jan+Sep) 6-9pm FREE) on the corner of 70th St. and Fifth Avenue and the The Morgan Library & Museum (closed Mon) (Fri 7-9 FREE) on Madison Ave and 37th St are also located near Fifth Ave.
Now plan your own museum crawl (info on hours & admission updated June 2, 2015).
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For other selected Museum and Gallery Special Exhibitions see Recent Posts in right Sidebar dated 06/14 and 06/12.
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