NYC Events,”Only the Best” (12/08) + Today’s Featured Pub (Times Square / Theater District)

“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-December”
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:

West Side Story Reimagined
Performed by the Multi-Grammy-Nominated Bobby Sanabria Multiverse Big Band
Museum of Mathematics, 11 E. 26th St./ 7:30PM,
Talk $25; with performance $55
“The composer and mathematician Joseph Schillinger once said, “Math is music, music is math.” No better example of this can be found than in Leonard Bernstein’s incredible score to West Side Story. Fusing progressive big-band jazz, lyric opera, modern dance, Latin rhythms, and symphonic and chamber music into a groundbreaking masterpiece, it revolutionized the Broadway musical. A student of numerology, Bernstein created the entire score from the haunting opening three notes of the whistle which he adapted from the Jewish shofar ram’s horn call to war. It opened the door to a multiverse of modern harmony, complex rhythms, and meters that left audiences amazed. Join the 21-piece multi-Grammy-nominated Bobby Sanabria Multiverse Big Band as they perform their critically acclaimed Latin jazz reimagining of the entire score in celebration of the maestro’s centennial!

Before attending this live performance on December 8, learn more about the mathematics of Bernstein at a talk with his daughter, Jamie Bernstein and composer Bobby Sanabria. You can purchase a joint ticket for both events for the discounted price of $55. Limited seating available. First come, first served.”

7 OTHER TOP NYC EVENTS TODAY (see below for full listing)
>> Frances Ruffelle Live(S) in New York
>> Ballet Hispanico
>> “Peter and the Wolf”
>> Chelsea Art Gallery Tour
Continuing Events
>>Bank of America Winter Village at Bryant Park
>>New York City Ballet / “The Nutcracker”
>> Christmas Spectacular Starring The Radio City Rockettes

Music, Dance, Performing Arts

Frances Ruffelle Live(S) in New York
The Green Room 42 / 7PM, $20
“Ruffelle has a place of her own in the hearts of musical-theater fans for her performance as sacrificial waif Éponine in the original London and Broadway casts of Les Misérables. Having recently relocated to New York City, she returns to the nightclub stage with a charmingly game and gamine monthly set at the Green Room 42.” (TONY)

Eponine is all grown up and she puts on one hot show – don’t miss it.

Ballet Hispanico
Watch Latin dance at The Apollo
“The Ballet Hispanico dance company offers more than just amazing moment; it’s a celebration of Latin American culture. The troupe will be heading out to perform around the country next year, but its final scheduled shows of the year are set for Harlem’s legendary Apollo Theater. Attendees will see “Carmen.maquia, ” choreographer Gustavo Ramirez Sansano’s charged-up take on Georges Bizet’s classic opera “Carmen.” (Newsday)
WHEN | WHERE 8 p.m. Dec. 7 and 8; 253 W. 125th St.,
INFO $13.50 to $100; 212-531-5300,

“Peter and the Wolf” (also Dec.9)
Guggenheim, Fifth Ave. at 89th St. / 2:30PM, +4PM, $45
“Prokofiev’s wonderful children’s work for narrator and chamber ensemble is both a fable about a headstrong boy and, cleverly, an introduction to the instruments of the orchestra. The hero is the young Peter, who disobeys his grandfather and is forced to solve a rather sticky situation involving a duck, a bird, and a hungry wolf. (Each character is matched with a corresponding instrument and musical motif.) In this chamber production for “Works & Process,” which has become something of a holiday standard, the style guru Isaac Mizrahi narrates, his delivery alternately avuncular and sassy. The backup band is the excellent Ensemble Signal, and the action is played out in dance and pantomime by members of Dance Heginbotham.” (Marina Harss, NewYorker)

at the Rose Theater at Jazz at Lincoln Center / 8 p.m., $40+
“Miller, a Rock and Roll Hall of Famer, will continue his lifelong exploration of the blues during this two-night run, which honors the music of Appalachia. He’ll be joined by Stuart, a bona fide country legend who spent five years playing guitar and singing backup vocals for Johnny Cash. Stuart’s band, the Fabulous Superlatives, will also be present for what promises to be a down-home show.” (NYT-MNATALIE WEINER)

at New York City Center / 2PM, +8PM, $30+
“In 1958, a small group of African-American dancers performed at the 92Y, and now, six decades later, that company is one of the largest and most popular modern dance troupes in the country. Still to come this season are works by Ronald K. Brown, Jessica Lang and a new two-act creation by the hip-hop choreographer Rennie Harris called “Lazarus,” inspired by Ailey’s life.” (NYT-Brian Schaefer)
    See a Sugar Plum-free ballet
“Skip The Nutcracker and its derivatives and catch the premiere weekend of Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater’s Lazarus, instead. Hip-hop master Rennie Harris is the brains behind this two-act ballet, which addresses the racial inequality Ailey faced when he founded his dance company in 1958 — inequality that continues to plague America 60 years later.” (Thrillist)

This is surely not Manhattan’s WesSide, and it’s not easy to get to, but I have found this one to be well worth the detour:

at the Jalopy Theater at various times, FREE
“This festival celebrates a free, weekly concert of the same name that’s been a fixture of Red Hook’s Jalopy Theatre since 2008. Most of the artists booked, predictably, fall somewhere in the broad category of American roots music; the “ruckus” comes from both the more unconventional acts and the shows’ jovial atmosphere. At the four day festival, which includes the neighboring Jalopy Pub, audiences can sample everything from Indian classical music via Brooklyn Raga Massive to old-time folk from 13-year-old banjo prodigy Nora Brown. The only cover charge is a suggested contribution to the tip jar after each set.” (NYT-NATALIE WEINER)


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

Chelsea Art Gallery Tour
Meet at 526 W. 26th St. between 10th & 11th Ave. / 1PM, +3:45PM, $25

“This ALL-NEW tour – our most exceptional of the month, in any gallery area – will include: (1) computer-designed acrylic paintings that signal the very future of art to come, (2) radical bronze sculptures inspired by emotionally charged social issues, and (3) a female artist’s enormous and exhilarating installations that will will leave you physically and mentally unbalanced, among 7 phenomenal shows in the world’s epicenter for contemporary art!

Take a fascinating gallery tour of Chelsea – the world’s center for contemporary art – and see the very latest in painting, sculpture, electronic media & photography. Our guide, who holds a Ph.D. in arts education, helps explain the artwork and leads the group in lively discussion.

The tour takes place Sat. Dec. 8 at 1:00 PM & 3:45 PM. These two tours will be identical in every way: the same guide and the same exhibits, so choose whichever start time best fits your schedule. It will take place no matter the temperature or weather, as the art is all indoors. SPECIAL OFFER: visit our website to request a DISCOUNT ticket link for $8-off admission! For more info, visit or call 917-250-0052.”


Continuing Events

So much going on in this town over the holidays. Too many events & performances to list here. For a much fuller list, expanding every day, check out the tab above: “Holidays.”

Bank of America Winter Village at Bryant Park
Midtown Manhattan’s winter wonderland.
Bryant Park (btw 5th/6th Ave. @42nd St.) / shops to 8PM, rink to 10PM
Enjoy the Holiday Shops, The Lodge by Urbanspace, and The Rink, the centerpiece of Winter Village and New York City’s only free admission ice skating rink.
The Holiday Shops are open through January 2, 2019.

The Rink
This 17,000 square foot rink features free admission ice skating, high quality rental skates, and free skating shows, special events, and activities.
​October 27, 2018 – March 3, 2019
Daily, 8am-10pm (Rink hours are weather permitting and Rink may be closed for events – check here)

New York City Ballet / “The Nutcracker” (Through Dec. 30)
NYS Theater, Lincoln Center / various times, $40

“New York City Ballet continues performances of its acclaimed 1954 production that would melt the Scroogiest of hearts. The elaborate staging includes a one-ton Christmas tree that grows from a 12 feet to 41 feet and an 85-pound, nine-feet wide Mother Ginger. The ballet highlights dozens of talented and adorable children from the School of American Ballet, but the star of the show isn’t just one dancer but a bevy of Snowflakes. Their waltz — full of beauty and daring — will take your breath away. ” (NYT-Gia Kourlas)


Christmas Spectacular Starring The Radio City Rockettes  (Nov.09- Jan.01)
Radio City Music Hall / various times, $46+
“There’s more great precision dancing than ever in the show’s current edition, which was revamped in 2007 and tweaked again this year. Glamorously outfitted in a series of eye-popping costumes, the Rockettes perform on a double-decker bus, a sparkly staircase and a snowy forest and enact a lightning-fast version of “The Twelve Days of Christmas.” Not to worry: They’re still doing the classic “Parade of the Wooden Soldiers” number, too. Each scene is enhanced by video backdrops displayed on one of the world’s largest LED screens.”

♦ 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: Nifty 9 – Best Cabarets / Piano Bars NYCity
These are my favorite places for an after dinner night on the town – music and drinks.
Hit the Hot Link and check out what’s happening tonight:

Feinstein’s/54 Below – 254 W 54th St.

The Green Room 42 – 570 Tenth Ave.

Don’t Tell Mama – 343 W 46th St.

The Rum House, in the Hotel Edison – 228 W. 47th St.

Laurie Beechman Theatre – 407 W 42nd St.

Marie’s Crisis – 59 Grove St.

The Duplex – 61 Christopher St.

Sid Gold’s Request Room – 165 W 26th St.

Cafe Carlyle, in the Carlyle Hotel – 35 E. 76th St.
This is the only one not located on Manhattan’s WestSide, and it ain’t cheap, but it has some of the finest singers.

For a comprehensive list of the best places to hear All Types of Live Music in Manhattan see the tab above “LiveMusic.”

NYCity Vacation Travel Guide Video (Expedia):


A PremierPub

Jimmy’s Corner 140 W 44th St (btw B’way & 7th ave)

IMG_2083Jimmy’s Corner is right in the heart of Times Square, but you won’t find it on the corner, it’s mid-block. Enter this long narrow bar and you are struck by the walls covered with mostly black-and-white boxing photographs, and memorabilia. Soon enough you learn that “Corner” refers to proprietor Jimmy Glenn’s long career as a corner man for some of boxing greats – Liston, Tyson, even “the greatest,” Ali.

Jimmy’s is a sort of time machine, taking you back to a time and place that no longer exists. All around you Times Square has cleaned up, grown up, assumed a new identity. Jimmy’s probably hasn’t changed a bit since it first opened in 1971. Certainly the bar itself looks original and the prices haven’t changed much either. When I brought a friend, who owns her own bar, she was surprised when she got the small tab for a round of drinks. Figured there must be a mistake, that maybe they forgot to charge for all the drinks.

Times Square today is filled with neon glitz and wandering tourists from Dubuque, but not Jimmy’s. You’ll likely find some old timer’s at the bar nursing their drinks, some younger locals at tables in the back, and maybe a few adventuresome tourists clutching their trusty guidebooks. There’s no food served here because this is just a bar, and sometimes that’s all you need.

On nights when no local team is playing, it’s a fine place to sip some drafts and listen to a great old time jukebox, with a great selection of  40s& 50s R&B and soul. On sports nights this very narrow bar can get a bit claustrophobic, filled with excited fans watching their team on the TVs. Either way, Jimmy’s is the place to be if you are looking for an old time bar in the new Times Square.
Website: are you kidding !
(although there is a facebook page with lots of photos –
Phone #: 212-221-9510
Hours: 11am – 4 am, except Sunday they open 12 noon
Happy Hour: not necessary, low prices all day, every day
Subway: #1,2,3 to TimesSquare 42nd st
walk 2 blks N on 7th ave to 44th st; ½ blk E to Jimmy’s

“Pub” is used in it’s broadest sense – bars, bar/restaurants, jazz clubs, wine bars, tapas bars, craft beer bars, dive bars, cocktail lounges, and of course, pubs – just about anyplace you can get a drink without a cover charge (except for certain jazz clubs).
If you have a fave premier pub or good eating place on Manhattan’s WestSide let us all know about it – leave a comment.
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