NYC Events,”Only the Best” (07/28) + 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-JULY”
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:

DIZZY GILLESPIE ALL-STAR BIG BAND (July 24-29)
at the Blue Note / 8 and 10:30 p.m., $30-$45
“Gillespie is known for helping to establish two important idioms that aren’t always associated with large ensembles — bebop and Latin jazz — but he did much of his most impressive work with big bands. In the final chapter of Gillespie’s career, his United Nation Orchestra was his main vehicle: an ecumenical group of improvisers from across the Americas, pushing his compositions into fresh terrain. After he died in 1993, the Dizzy Gillespie All-Star Big Band sprang up to carry the torch. Today, that group includes such major figures as the vocalist Roberta Gambarini and the pianist Cyrus Chestnut.” (NYT-GIOVANNI RUSSONELLO)

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6 OTHER TOP NYC EVENTS TODAY (see below for full listing)
>>Panorama New York City
>> Linda Eder
>> Fred Hersch Trio
>> Catherine Russell
>> Regina Carter Quartet
>> NYC Poetry Festival
Continuing Events
>>
NYC Restaurant Week 
>>
Twelfth Night
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Music, Dance, Performing Arts

Panorama New York City (July 27-29.)
Randall’s Island Park
“For the past two years, Gotham has had its own Coachella in the form of Panorama New York City, a three-day music fest on Randall’s Island that, much like last month’s Governors Ball, functions as a primer on the contemporary sounds that engage those who stream the most music. Rockers, m.c.s, soul-stirrers, and d.j.s rub right up against one another—or, at least, their fans do. It’s interesting to imagine the folks who follow the literary songwriter Father John Misty making nice with the trap-rap denizens who turn out for Atlanta’s Migos; both acts appear on July 27. On July 28, Janet Jackson headlines a fine bill that puts her atop Lil Wayne, Gucci Mane, St. Vincent, and the dreamy pop of Japanese Breakfast. Highlights on July 29 include David Byrne, the xx, and the techno sound-shaper Moodymann.” (K. Leander Williams, NewYorker)

Linda Eder
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 Trio (July 24-29)
Village Vanguard, 178 Seventh Ave. S., at 11th St./ 8:30PM, +10:30PM, $35
The pianist Fred Hersch generally forms deep connections with his rhythm mates, who, since 2009, have been John Hebert, on bass, and Eric McPherson, on drums­­—an assured, near-telepathic team. The splendid results of this artistic union recently arrived in the form of the album “Live in Europe,” which stands as a testament to Hersch’s commanding stature as an improviser and bandleader.” (Steve Futterman, NewYorker)

Catherine Russell (July 26-29)
Dizzy’s Club, Jazz at Lincoln Center / 7:30PM, +9:30PM, $45
With guitarist Matt Munisteri, pianist Mark Shane, bassist Tal Ronen, and drummer Mark McLean.

“Grammy Award winner Catherine Russell has been one of the most widely recognized jazz vocalists since the release of her debut album in 2006. Her latest album, Harlem on My Mind, was nominated for the 2017 Best Jazz Vocal Album Grammy Award. Russell’s experience extends beyond releasing seven acclaimed albums as a solo artist; she has also worked with Steely Dan, David Bowie, Cyndi Lauper, Paul Simon, Jackson Browne, and Levon Helm. Seeing Russell perform live is a truly uplifting experience and an easy recommendation for any fan of jazz vocals.”

Regina Carter Quartet (July 26-29.)
Jazz Standard, 116 E. 27th St./ MM
Jazz violinists, never a populous breed, are few and far between in the new millennium. Carter, a string stalwart since the nineties, brings a commitment to musical and familial history to her art (her cousin is the maverick sax player James Carter), lending her playing a striking personal edge. (Steve Futterman, NewYorker)

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

NYC Poetry Festival (July 28-29)
Governors Island,
“Calling all romantics! The New York City Poetry Festival returns this weekend to Governors Island with two days of live readings, both inside historic homes and outside in the parks, with the skyline of the city as your backdrop. It’s free to hear from established poets and up-and-comers, though ticketed members get better access. Headliners are Nico Tortorella, Terrance Hayes, Danielle Pafunda and Ladan Osman. Make it a VIP weekend with a tent suite, s’mores by the campfire and breakfast included.” (Metro)

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Continuing Events

NYC Restaurant Week  (July 23-August 17)
“The summer edition of NYC Restaurant Week has arrived. You can make reservations now for deals at 386 participating restaurants through August 17th. How can a ravenous New Yorker whittle down the choices? Depends on what you like. Among this year’s offerings are nearly a hundred American Traditional spots, followed by 86 Italian restaurants, dozens of steakhouses and French bistros and brasseries, nearly as many Mexican joints, a smattering of Chinese, Greek, Indian, seafood, soul food, vegetarian, and Vietnamese options, and two places with the nerve to identify as “eclectic.”

Weekday lunch specials are down a few dollars and a few calories. Twenty-six bucks now buys a two-course midday meal — nobody has time for dessert on a work day, anyway. Three-course dinners still run $42. These four weeks in the throes of summer are like a culinary leap year — free celestial time to be bold, take a risk and try something new. Realistically though, you’ve maybe got the time and money to try, what, like five of these places? And remember the bi-annual NYC Restaurant Week refrain: tax, tip, and drinks not included.’ (Thrillist)
Here are the best of the best.

Twelfth Night (July 17 – August 19)
Shakespeare Delacorte Theater, Central Park / 8PM, FREE* (the Bard is off on Mondays)
“This musical adaptation of Shakespeare’s comedy began in 2016 as a one-weekend run under the auspices of the Public’s civically ambitious Public Works program, which collaborates with NYC communities to create large-scale theater. Director Kwame Kwei-Armah is joined by Public honcho Oskar Eustis to helm the production’s return engagement; Shuler Hensley and  Ato Blankson-Wood joins original cast members Nikki M. James, Andrew Kober and Shaina Taub—who also wrote the songs—alongside less seasoned actors and local residents.” (TONY)

*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.

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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.

Alas, Caffe V is no more, another victim of a rapacious NYC landlord. Owner Ishrat fought the good fight and Caffe V will be sorely missed.

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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 07/26 and 07/24.
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