NYC Events,”Only the Best” (01/08) + 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, check the tab above:  NYC Events-January”
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:

at Joe’s Pub / 7 p.m.; $30
“To watch a flamenco show at Joe’s Pub is to harken back a century or so to the Café Cantantes in Seville, where song, dance, music and libations were enjoyed in intimate, immersive environs. Here, the New York-based Noche Flamenca presents “Rondan Los Deseos” (Circle of Desire), which was created by the troupe’s co-founders Martin Santangelo and Soledad Barrio, who are also its star performers. After a previous engagement at the Pub and an appearance on the Joyce stage last year, the work returns with new duets and trios.” (NYT-Brian Schaefer)
(also Jan. 9, 9:30 p.m., Jan. 10, 8 and 10 p.m.; through Jan. 11).


7 OTHER TOP NYC EVENTS TODAY (see below for full listing)
>> Marcus Roberts Trio
>> 54 Sings Lady Gaga
>> Adriana Lecouvreur
>> Raquel Cion
>> Detox Your Finances With The Fiscal Femme!

Continuing Events
>> Bank of America Winter Village at Bryant Park
>> Winter Jazzfest

Music, Dance, Performing Arts

Marcus Roberts Trio (Jan.8-12)
Birdland / 8:30PM, +11PM, $30-$40
“This pianist started his jazz education in the hardbop era and worked backward from there, eventually expanding his skill set to include ragtime and stride. Ever a fascinating, even polarizing creator, Roberts manages to endow standards with surprise. Here he leads a fiery combo.” (TONY)

54 Sings Lady Gaga
Feinstein’s/54 Below / 9:30PM, $30+
“Annie Golden, F. Michael Haynie, Taylor Iman Jones, Lauren Marcus, Brian Charles Rooney, Carrie St. Louis and Talia Suskauer are among the roughly two dozen artists saluting the oeuvre of born star Lady Gaga in this one-night concert. A portion of the proceeds will benefit the Born This Way Foundation.” (TONY)

at Joe’s Pub / 9:30 p.m.; $30
“This thoracic surgeon, inspired by the Arab Spring at home and by “The Daily Show with Jon Stewart” on television, launched his own humorous news program in Egypt in 2011. Time magazine named him one of the “100 most influential people in the world” two years later. Now living in the Bay Area, Youssef is working on a one-man show about the subtle satirical differences between dictatorship and democracy.” (NYT- Sean L. McCarthy)

Adriana Lecouvreur (next Jan.12, 1PM)
Metropolitan Opera House / 7:30PM, $17+
“Soprano Anna Netrebko joins the ranks of Renata Tebaldi, Montserrat Caballé, and Renata Scotto, taking on—for the first time at the Met—the title role of the real-life French actress who dazzled 18th-century audiences with her on-and offstage passion. The soprano is joined by tenor Piotr Beczała as Adriana’s lover, Maurizio. The principal cast also features mezzo-soprano Anita Rachvelishvili and baritone Ambrogio Maestri. Gianandrea Noseda conducts. Sir David McVicar’s staging, which sets the action in a working replica of a Baroque theater, premiered at the Royal Opera House in London, where the Guardian praised the “elegant production, sumptuously designed … The spectacle guarantees a good night out.”

Raquel Cion: Me & Mr. Jones—My Intimate Relationship with David Bowie
Pangea / 9:30PM, $25
“Alt-cabaret siren Cion explores inner and outer spaces in a reprise her tribute to shape-shifting rock icon David Bowie.” (TONY)

JACK FERVER (also Jan.9-12)
at New York Lives Arts / 8 p.m.; $25+
“After an acclaimed debut last spring, Ferver’s “Everything Is Imaginable” receives a weeklong encore, as part of both the American Realness festival and the Live Artery showcase. Ferver is joined here by accomplished colleagues Lloyd Knight (Martha Graham Dance Company), Garen Scribner (Broadway’s “An American in Paris”), James Whiteside (American Ballet Theater) and dancer and costume designer Reid Bartelme. In the work’s first half, they individually and collectively pay tribute to childhood idols and reflect on their queer identities. In the second half, things get dark.” (NYT-Brian Schaefer)


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

Detox Your Finances With The Fiscal Femme!
GA NYC (Manhattan) HQ, 902 Broadway/ 4th Fl. / 6:30PM, $18
“One of the most popular new year resolutions aside from committing to “Dry January” is to tackle your finances. If you, like us, have no idea where to start, don’t fret—the Fiscal Femme has got your back. Financial expert Ashley Feinstein Gerstley just released a new book titled The 30-Day Money Cleanse and its pages are chock-full of tips for becoming better with money without too much sacrifice. Join Gerstley for the next stop on her tour at General Assembly to get a copy, and figure out how to get on-track for that early retirement we’re all dreaming about.” (TONY)


Continuing Events

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 Lodge by Urbanspace, and The Rink, the centerpiece of Winter Village and New York City’s only free admission ice skating rink.
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)


Winter Jazzfest (Jan.4-12)
Various Locations, Individual shows $15-55; one day marathon pass $50–$60; two-day marathon pass $90–$105
“During the typically bleak post–New Year’s Eve concert lull, Winter Jazzfest is a bright spot on the city’s calendar. With shows spread across nine nights, the fest brings top jazzers to venues like Le Poisson Rouge, Nublu and, for the first time, Brooklyn Steel. The festivities end with its signature two-night Greenwich Village marathon: a buzzy, multi-stage blowout that’s typically one of the best concerts in NYC. The marathon shows aren’t individually ticketed, so a wristband grants you access to any of each night’s gigs—as long as a given club doesn’t hit capacity. It’s a model that encourages sampling and venue-hopping. The event also requires patience and an open mind: If your preferred show is full, pull out the schedule, and head to one of the nearby spots for something unexpected. This year’s fest continues to stand with movements including #metoo and #blacklivesmatter in its active support of social and racial justice, gender equality and immigrant rights. (TONY)

Winter Jazzfest, the year’s largest survey of the jazz scene with over 100 acts playing from Lower Manhattan to Brooklyn, with its famous marathon sessions taking place both this Saturday and all next weekend. Here’s a full guide to Winter Jazzfest

♦ 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 65 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 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.,, 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.,, 212-997-6661
Le Poisson Rouge – 158 Bleecker St.,, 212-505-3474
and one more, not quite WestSide
Bowery Ballroom – 6 Delancey St.

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

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.

NYCity Vacation Travel Guide Video (Expedia):


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 is one exhibition the New Yorker likes:

Jennifer Packer  (through Jan. 19)

Sikkema Jenkins, 530 W. 22nd St.

The rough areas of drizzling color in Packer’s portraits (usually of her family and friends) might suggest a speedy process, but her gauzy treatment of, for example, a blue blanket cocooning a sleeping figure, in “The Eye Is Not Satisfied with Seeing,” conveys deliberation instead. Her figures appear almost anointed; scumbled red paint around the head of one pensive young man has a halo-like effect. Interspersed with these beatific portraits are moody floral still-lifes in which the traditional symbolism of the historical European genre is radically updated. The large diptych “Laquan” is ebullient with palm fronds and fiery peonies, but also elegiac: the work is named for Laquan McDonald, a teen-ager who was killed by the police, in 2014.”


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 ( 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 this 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.) “

For other selected Museum and Gallery Special Exhibitions see recent posts in right sidebar dated 01/06 and 01/04.

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