NYC Events,”Only the Best” (09/01) + US Tennis Open (Day 6)

“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-September”
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.


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

Summer HD Festival: Un Ballo in Maschera
Metropolitan Opera Plaza, Lincoln Center / 8PM, FREE
“An all-star cast—including tenor Marcelo Álvarez, soprano Sondra Radvanovsky, and the incomparable baritone Dmitri Hvorostovsky—comes together for Verdi’s tragedy of love, friendship, and betrayal. Original transmission: December 8, 2012 Approximate running time: 2 hours 20 minutes.”

“The tenth Summer HD Festival features ten thrilling performances from the Met’s Live in HD series of cinema transmissions. The showings run from August 24 through September 3, with approximately 3,000 seats set up in front of the opera house each night, as well as additional standing room around Lincoln Center Plaza.”

8 OTHER TOP NYC EVENTS TODAY (see below for full listing)
>> Here and Now Festival
>> Cyrus Chestnut Trio
>>  Joe Lovano
>> Michael Feinstein and Christine Ebersole:
>> Washington Square Outdoor Art Exhibit
>> Hester Street Fair: Lobster and Beer
>> Unicycle Festival
>> New York International Salsa Congress
Continuing Events
>> Today’s Top Event –  U.S. TENNIS OPEN

>> Metropolitan Opera Summer HD Festival
>> Fear & Force: New York City’s Sons of Liberty

Music, Dance, Performing Arts

OK, this is not Manhattan’s WestSide, but it is Brooklyn’s WestSide and worth the detour:
Here and Now Festival
Bargemusic, Fulton Ferry Landing / 6PM, (Sep.02 @4PM), $40
“The week surrounding Labor Day can seem like a classical-music desert, with summer festivals ending and the new fall season yet to arrive. Happily, Bargemusic, that reliably unconventional floating concert hall moored in the shadow of the Brooklyn Bridge, addresses the drought head on, with an annual series that celebrates living composers. Instead of emphasizing marquee names, the opening salvo of the Here and Now Festival, Aug. 31-Sept. 2, showcases friends and neighbors, with companionable works by Daron Hagen, Yoriaki Matsudaira, Peri Mauer, Daniel Schnyder, Gerard Schwarz, and David Taylor, laid out in a smorgasbord of world and local premières (and a few repeats) that changes daily.” (Steve Smith, NewYorker)

Cyrus Chestnut Trio (Aug. 30-Sept. 2.)
Jazz Standard, 116 E. 27th St. / 7:30PM, +9:30PM, $35
“Although his new album, “Kaleidoscope,” finds Chestnut reconfiguring compositions by Mozart, Debussy, and Satie, it’s safe to say that this passionate pianist will dip into the roomy jazz repertoire at this engagement. He’ll play alongside two partners long familiar from his recordings and live performances: the bassist Buster Williams and the drummer Lenny White.” (Steve Futterman, NewYorker)

Joe Lovano (Aug.28-Sept.2)
Village Vanguard, 178 Seventh Ave. S., at 11th St./ 8:30PM, +10:30PM, $35
“Too young at age sixty-five to be considered an elder statesman, but with enough experience and wisdom to have secured a position in the jazz firmament, Lovano can safely be called a master, a saxophonist and bandleader of rare inspiration. For this engagement, he steers an intergenerational quartet that includes Marc Johnson (the last bassist to work with Bill Evans) and the septuagenarian drummer Andrew Cyrille (a valued associate of Cecil Taylor).” (Steve Futterman,NewYorker)

 Michael Feinstein and Christine Ebersole: Two For the Road (Sep.01-03))
54 Below / 7PM,+9:30PM, $85+
“Feinstein, the popular and polished standard-bearer of American song, returns to the club that bears his name for a long run that teams him with one of the best cabaret performers out there: Broadway leading lady Ebersole (Grey Gardens), who is equally skilled at comedy and sentiment and who moves with ease between her lustrous belt and legit soprano. Among the selections in their Great American Songbook–centered set are “Stormy Weather,” “Time After Time” and “On the Atchison, Topeka and the Santa Fe.” (TONY)


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

Washington Square Outdoor Art Exhibit (Sept. 1-3)
University Place at East 13th Street to the east side of Washington Square Park at West Third Street./ 12-6PM, FREE
“The Fall Washington Square Outdoor Art Exhibit will be held from on Saturday, Sept. 1, Sunday, Sept. 2 and Monday, Sept. 3 from noon to 6 p.m. (as well as Sept. 8-9). It will feature fine arts, mixed media, jewelry, ceramics and more.” (amNY)

Hester Street Fair: Lobster and Beer (Sept. 1)
Hester Street and Essex Street / 11AM-6PM, FREE
“Eat enough lobster and drink $4 beer until your heart is content at the fourth Lobster and Beer event at the Hester Street Fair. Local restaurants (DownEast Lobstah and Lobster Joint) will be on site, and you’ll be able to wash it all down with Old Blue Last — a smooth American Pale Ale. Of course, there will be many shops to peruse from as usual.” (amNY)

Unicycle Festival
Governors Island / 12PM-5PM, FREE
Sometimes two wheels are just so boring. Head to Governors Island on Saturday and Sunday for the Unicycle Festival, with games, races, demonstrations, unicycle basketball, Frisbee, and sumo, and the opportunity to learn how to ride a one-wheeler yourself. Add a costume, and you may just have found a new profession.” (

New York International Salsa Congress (Aug.31-Sept.2)
Hit the dance floor at a 3-day salsa fest
New York Marriott Marquis, 1535 Broadway /
“Celebrate Labor Day weekend at the New York International Salsa Congress, a three-day festival where Latin dance and the sounds that inspire it will be at every turn. Bands and DJs will provide the tunes, and dance instructors will be on hand to teach the steps.”

Partial/day passes $40-$150, full passes $299-$399; workshops are at 11 a.m. Friday-Saturday and 10 a.m.-2 p.m. on Sunday; Musical showcases at 8 p.m. daily” (amNY)


Continuing Events

Today’s Top Event


The U.S. Open begins play today (11AM) at the Billie Jean King National Tennis Center in Flushing Meadows-Corona Park in Queens (about 45 min. from Times Square) and runs through Sept.09. This tournament, which serves up the world’s best tennis players right in our backyard,    is the fourth and final Grand Slam tennis tournament of the year.
subway: @ Times Square take #7 to Willets Point.

Today’s tips: Arrive Early. Security screening seems to have been ratcheted up which may cause delays to enter. Best not to bring a backpack.

The most comprehensive review of the tournament and the current state of tennis can be found at the NYTimes/Sports. OR for another useful guide to the U.S. Open, try TimeOutNewYork’s guide.

Early in the tournament forget the Big House (Arthur Ashe Stadium), which is a full 50% larger than any of the stadiums at the other majors and not a good place to watch tennis. Get a grounds pass and once inside check out one of the electronic scoreboards listing matches in progress. Find a match or players that interest you. Head over to their court for some great tennis, because in this tournament even the qualifiers are great players. There is no other major sporting event where you can get so close to world class athletes as at the U.S. Open – at least on the outer field courts, and the Grandstand court. These are  courts where you can get a real sense of the pace of the game.

Unfortunately, the brand new Armstrong stadium carries on the USTA tradition of building humongous stadiums, but we still have the outer courts and Grandstand.

If you always wondered how much money is at stake in this tournament, here are the numbers: (the total purse for the 2018 US Open is $53 million)

In the men’s and women’s singles tournaments this year, players will earn $54,000 for playing in the main draw, $93,000 for reaching the second round and $156,000 for advancing to the Round of 32. They will take home $266,000 for reaching the fourth round, $475,000 for contesting the quarterfinals and $925,000 for making the semifinals. Reaching the final is worth $1.85M, and the winner gets $3.8M, which means that final match is worth $2M for winning. Don’t make any unforced errors!

Both the men’s and women’s doubles champion teams will earn $700,000, the highest in US Open history. First- and second-round losing teams will earn $16,500 and $27,875, respectively. Teams reaching the Round of 16 will receive $46,500, quarterfinalists will win $85,275 and semifinal teams will take home $166,400. Finalists will collect $350,000.


Metropolitan Opera Summer HD Festival (Aug.24-Sep.03)
Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts
“Think you can’t afford the finer things? Think again. We got the hookup on free opera. For its tenth summer in a row, the Metropolitan Opera invites you to Lincoln Center Plaza for nightly alfresco screenings of epic performances from previous seasons. From August 24–September 3, the Met will set up over 2,800 seats in front of the Opera House, where you and your date can eat and enjoy tapes of the shows under the stars.

The Met opens the series with a self-aware screening of the Marx Brothers’ A Night at the Opera on August 24. After that, you can check out classics like Anthony Minghella’s stunning Madama Butterfly production (September 3 and 8) and many more. Here’s the lineup: A Night at the Opera (August 24) Roméo et Juliette (August 25) Norma (August 26) Elektra (August 27) Il Barbiere di Siviglia (August 28) Lulu (August 29) Rusalka (August 30) L’Elisir d’Amore (August 31) Un Ballo in Maschera (September 1) Der Rosenkavalier (September 2) Madama Butterfly (September 3 and 8)” (TONY)

Fear & Force: New York City’s Sons of Liberty
Fraunces Tavern Museum, 54 Pearl St./ 12:00 pm – 5:00 pm, $7
“We may not like paying taxes, but we would never think to tar and feather the tax collector. Yet as many of the colonists prepared for what would be the American Revolution, there was an organized group who opposed the government through violent resistance. Come see objects preserved from pivotal moments relating to the New York Sons of Liberty, like the tearing down of the King George statue in Bowling Green Park, and throwing chests of tea into the New York Harbor.”

♦ 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.


Bonus NYC Events – Music Venues:
So much fine live music every night in this town. These are my favorite non jazz music venues on Manhattan’s WestSide. Hit the Hot Link and check out who’s playing tonight:

City Winery – 155 Varick St.,, 212-608-0555
Joe’s Pub @ Public Theater – 425 Lafayette St.,, 212-967-7555
Beacon Theatre – 2124 Broadway @ 74th St.,, 212-465-6500
Town Hall – 123 W43rd St. (btw 6/7),, 212-997-6661
Le Poisson Rouge – 158 Bleecker St.,, 212-505-3474
Sony Hall – 235 W 46th St. (btw 7/8),, 212-997-5123
and one more, not exactly WestSide:
Bowery Ballroom – 6 Delancey St.,

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 discovery and enjoyment.

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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