NYC Events,”Only the Best” (04/08) + 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:  “APRIL NYC Events”
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.
To make your own after dinner plans TONIGHT, see the tab above;  “LiveMusic.”

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

Jeff Tweedy (Apr.8-9)
The Town Hall / 7:30PM, $45+
“Jeff Tweedy of Wilco plays two shows behind his second studio album WARM following his acoustic retrospective Together at Last (2017) and his band’s 2016 LP, cheekily titled Schmilco. The record sort of acts as a companion to Tweedy’s highly-praised memoir Let’s Go (So We Can Get Back) in which the scribe reflects on stories about his past, the formation of Wilco, his song-writing process, overcoming hardships and more. Expect a sprawling, deep set stacked with new and stellar tracks from WARM and hopefully a few classics.” (TONY)

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7 OTHER TOP NYC EVENTS TODAY (see below for full listing)
>> Manhattan School of Music Jazz Orchestra: Manhattan Sings!
>> Catherine Cohen: The Twist?… She’s Gorgeous
>> Third Rail Projects
>> “Ask A Spaceman” Live with Paul M. Sutter
>> Three Identical Strangers: The Film and the Men Behind It
>> Trilogy of Nations: Japan, Korea, and China with Sam Mehta
>> Monday Night Magic

Continuing Events
>> SOUNDTRACK OF AMERICA
>> STREB

COMING SOON (WFUV)
4/8-9 Andrew Bird, National Sawdust
4/8 Muse, Madison Square Garden
4/9 Charlotte Gainsbourg, Brooklyn Steel
4/10 Melissa Etheridge, Town Hall
4/10 The Wallflowers & Mott the Hoople, Beacon Theatre

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Music, Dance, Performing Arts

Manhattan School of Music Jazz Orchestra: Manhattan Sings!
Dizzy’s Club, Jazz at Lincoln Center/ 7:30PM, +9:30PM, $35
“Manhattan School of Music’s programs of study for Jazz Arts majors are designed to develop skilled performers, composers, arrangers, and jazz educators in preparation for careers in jazz music. Systematic and rigorous conservatory training, combined with a myriad of performance and networking opportunities in New York City, makes this program one of the richest of its kind for emerging jazz musicians. These talented young musicians prove that the spirit of swing is alive and well, and that the future of jazz is in extremely capable hands. Tonight, under the leadership of conductor and arranger Jim McNeely, the Jazz Orchestra will work alongside members of its growing vocal program to celebrate the longstanding vocal tradition in jazz.”

Catherine Cohen: The Twist?… She’s Gorgeous
Joe’s Pub at the Public Theater / 9:30PM, $15
“If you live in New York and haven’t seen Catherine Cohen perform live…seek treatment. The comedy chanteuse had us mesmerized when she was singing in dive bars about boys; now armed with a full backing band at one of the city’s best venues, Cohen is a total force of nature. She takes over Joe’s Pub for a night of wickedly subversive musical comedy, fabulous looks and self-directed diva worship. She’s joined by regular collaborator Henry Koperski at the keys. Not to be missed.” (TONY)

Third Rail Projects (April 8-12)
Winter Garden at Brookfield Place, 230 Vesey St./ 12:00-12:10PM, +1:00-1:10PM, FREE
“The company that turned a former hospital into an immersive “Alice in Wonderland” for “Then She Fell” (2012) and a Bushwick warehouse into a swinging-seventies resort for “The Grand Paradise” (2016) now transforms the palm-tree-stocked Winter Garden at the Brookfield Place mall into a fantasy oasis. Set in the nineteen-eighties and filled with period moves, “Oasis” follows four office workers on their lunch break as they discover what seems to be a mirage of a tropical paradise. The story unfolds in lunchtime vignettes on weekdays at noon and 1; an evening show, on April 12, combines all the episodes.” (Brian Seibert, NewYorker)

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Smart Stuff / Other NYC EventS

HWBC & Science Friday Present “Ask A Spaceman” Live with Paul M. Sutter
Housing Works Bookstore Cafe, 126 Crosby St./ 7PM, $6, includes 1 drink
Go interstellar with astrophysicist Paul M. Sutter, who leads a panel looking at life, death, and origins, as inspired by his book Your Place in the Universe: Understanding Our Big, Messy Existence. Science Friday co-hosts, with space biophysics, nuclear secrecy, and the role of teeth in understanding human evolution among the expertises on display.” (ThoughtGallery)

Three Identical Strangers: The Film and the Men Behind It
Temple Emanu-El, 1 E. 65th St./ 6:30PM, $18
“It began as the ultimate feel-good story: three identical triplets separated at birth and adopted by three different families are reunited by astonishing coincidence. Their reunion unfolds like a fairy tale as they discover dozens of commonalities, from their fondness for wrestling to the way they cross their legs. The media falls in love with them, and they even become the darlings of Studio 54.

Then the past disrupts that reunion after the three discover that their separation had been intentional, the plan of a Jewish scientist who used them in an experiment to unravel how identity is shaped, with the collaboration of a Jewish adoption agency.

Join us to watch this extraordinary documentary film that won the Special Jury Prize at the 2018 Sundance Film Festival and then to hear from two of the triplets, David Kellman and Bobby Shafran, and director Tim Wardle, about the ethical tangle that shaped the triplets’ lives.”

Trilogy of Nations: Japan, Korea, and China with Sam Mehta
The Explorers Club, 46 E. 70th St./ 7PM, $25
“Delve into the overlapping qualities and striking differences between three interlinked nations of East Asia. Author Sam Mehta, who has traveled extensively in the region, looks into shared histories, paths to prosperity, and varying approaches to contemporary challenges across Korea, Japan, and China.” (ThoughtGallery)

“During the last ice age, the sea level was low enough to expose Japan, Korea and China as a part of the single landmass. The story of these East Asian countries has been interlinked ever since. China of course is the largest and had the most influence on Japan and Korea. The Chinese-influenced cultures have evolved differently based on their unique geography, history and culture. However, they are many similarities, thus appropriately the three great economies of Japan, Korea and China are often referred to as a trilogy of nations.”

Monday Night Magic
Players Theatre, West Village / 8PM, $37.50
“For 21 years, this proudly old-school series has offered a different lineup of professional magicians every week: opening acts, a headliner and a host, plus two or three close-up magicians to wow the audience at intermission. Housed for the past seven years at the unprepossessing Players Theatre, it is an heir to the vaudeville tradition.

Many of the acts incorporate comedic elements, and audience participation is common. (If you have young children, bring them; they make especially adorable assistants.) Shows cost just $37.50 in advance and typically last well over two hours, so you get a lot of value and variety for your magic dollar. In contrast to some fancier magic shows, this one feels like comfort food: an all-you-can eat buffet to which you’re encouraged to return until you’re as stuffed as a hat full of rabbits.” (TONY)

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Continuing Events


SOUNDTRACK OF AMERICA
at the Shed
(April 9, 8:30 p.m.; through April 14).
“For its opening, this flashy new interdisciplinary arts space — a cultural counterweight to the surrounding commercial development in Hudson Yards — will host five nights of concerts honoring the influence of African-American musicians. Developed by the filmmaker Steve McQueen, the series aims to explore the story of black music in America from early spirituals to today’s diverse forms. To that end, the performances in the coming week feature artists such as the jazz pianist and bandleader Jon Batiste, the rappers Smino and Rapsody, the avant-pop cellist Kelsey Lu and the R&B singer Emily King.” (NYT-OLIVIA HORN)

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STREB (weekends through May 12)
Streb Lab for Action Mechanics, 51 N. 1st St., Bklyn. / Sat.5PM, Sun.3PM; $25
“The shows that STREB Extreme Action puts on at its Williamsburg headquarters  have a carnival atmosphere, and not just because eating and drinking are encouraged. Will the Action Heroes, as the intrepid dancer-acrobats are styled, collide as they hurl themselves off a trampoline? Will they get whacked by swinging cinder blocks or huge metal contraptions? Probably not, but they want you to cringe. Their newest machine is the Molinette, a giant bar that revolves like the blade of a windmill.” (Brian Seibert, NewYorker)

The Streb performers are absolutely amazing and so worth the detour.
I try to see them every year, can’t get enough.

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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 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.

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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., citywinery.com, 212-608-0555
Joe’s Pub @ Public Theater – 425 Lafayette St., joespub.com, 212-967-7555
Beacon Theatre – 2124 Broadway @ 74th St., beacontheatre.com, 212-465-6500
Town Hall – 123 W43rd St., thetownhall.org, 212-997-6661
Le Poisson Rouge – 158 Bleecker St., lepoissonrouge.com, 212-505-3474
and one more, not quite WestSide
Bowery Ballroom – 6 Delancey St. boweryballroom.com

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. caffevivaldi.com, 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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NYCity Vacation Travel Guide Video (Expedia):

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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:

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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 (nycgo.com) 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.) “

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

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