NYC Events,”Only the Best” (05/02) + 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:  “May 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.
OR to make your own after dinner plans TONIGHT, see the tab above;  “LiveMusic.”


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

The Ring Cycle (Apr.29-May 11)
Tonight; Wagner’s Siegfried
Metropolitan Opera House (at Lincoln Center) / 6PM, $50+
“Wagner’s epic Ring cycle continues. The hero Siegfried, orphaned at birth, learns his true identity and fulfills his destiny to become Brünnhilde’s savior and lover. Tenor Andreas Schager sings the title role, with Christine Goerke as Brünnhilde and Michael Volle as the enigmatic Wanderer. Philippe Jordan conducts.”

“Wagner’s operatic tetralogy returns to the Met for the first time in six seasons. Show up to witness one of opera’s grandest works—and Robert Lepage’s equally grand production, which features a 45-ton mechanical set.” (TONY)

If tonight becomes a tough ticket – try one of the other performances, or the secondary market. Do whatever you have to do –  this is “The Ring” and it may be six years before you can experience this again.


7 OTHER TOP NYC EVENTS TODAY (see below for full listing)
>> Gilad Hekselman
>> Minguet Quartet
>> Eli “Paperboy” Reed’
>> Bruce Forman Trio

>> Open Rehearsal – New York Philharmonic
>> Frieze New York

Continuing Events
>> Tribeca Film Festival

5/2-3 Deer Tick, Music Hall of Williamsburg
5/2 Band Of Skulls, Mercury Lounge
5/2-4, 5/7-8 Morrissey, Lunt-Fontaine Theatre
5/3 Santigold, Hammerstein Ballroom
5/4 Son Volt, Music Hall of Williamsburg
5/5 Al Green, The Apollo Theater
5/5 Vampire Weekend, Webster Hall
5/6 Bjork’s Cornucopia, The Shed
5/6-7 Nickel Creek, Music Hall of Williamsburg
5/7 Delta Rae, Sony Hall
5/7-8 Imogen Heap, Town Hall
5/8 Dandy Warhols, Brooklyn Steel


Music, Dance, Performing Art

Gilad Hekselman (April 30-May 5)
Village Vanguard, 178 Seventh Ave. S. / 8:30PM, +10:30PM, $35
“If the previous generation of jazz guitarists, flourishing in the wake of seventies fusion, were open to incorporating the extravagant sonics of avant rock and R. & B., the six-string maestros of today—among them, Gilad Hekselman—positively throw bear hugs around transformative contemporary textures. Here, Hekselman, an entrancing stylist who cleverly employs a small arsenal of pedals and effects, is joined by an ensemble that includes the outstanding saxophonist Mark Turner.” (Steve Futterman, NewYorker)

Minguet Quartet
Rubenstein Atrium @ Lincoln Center / 7:30PM, FREE
“At this hour-long, free performance, the Germany-based Minguet Quartet invites you to explore its “multidimensional, sparkling sound world” ( through Beethoven’s epic final string quartet and an arrangement of Mahler’s devastating song “I am Lost to the World.”

The Program
Beethoven: String Quartet in C-sharp minor, Op. 131iTunes
Mahler (arr. Reisinger): Ich bin der Welt abhanden gekommen
“Virtuosity and passion.” – Washington Post

Eli “Paperboy” Reed’
Le Poisson Rouge / 8PM, $18
“Soul revivalist Eli “Paperboy” Reed is releasing his new album 99 Cent Dreams on April 12 via Yep Roc (tickets), and though the title track has a rapped verse by Big Daddy Kane, the album is otherwise rooted in the same kind of ’60s/’70s soul that Eli has been paying homage to for the past 15 years. He recorded it with producer Matt Ross-Spang (Margo Price, Jason Isbell, Lucero) at the old Sun Records stomping grounds of Sam Phillips Recording in Memphis, and the album features backing vocals by Memphis veterans The Masqueraders.” (brooklyn vegan)

Bruce Forman Trio
Dizzy’s Club, Jazz at Lincoln Center / 7:30PM, +9:30PM, $40
“Dizzy’s Club recently presented guitarist Bruce Forman in his first New York City appearance in over 20 years, and we couldn’t wait to have him back. Forman is a master of jazz guitar fundamentals who honed his skills with the likes of Ray Brown, Freddie Hubbard, and Joe Henderson before embarking on a decades-long career as a leader. He’s making his New York City return in perfect style, with a trio gig featuring two of the city’s top musicians. Stop by Dizzy’s to enjoy the exquisite sound of a straight-ahead jazz and bop expert on a classic hollow-body guitar.”

Open Rehearsal – New York Philharmonic
David Geffen Hall / 9:45AM, $22
“All Open Rehearsals are “working” rehearsals and therefore the program may not be played in its entirety. Additionally, we cannot guarantee the appearance of any soloist at an Open Rehearsal.

Experience this Open Rehearsal free of charge, and from the best seats! Become a member today and get up to 10 free tickets to other select Open Rehearsals, access to priority seating, and complimentary refreshments. Learn more about member benefits.”


Smart Stuff / Other NYC EventS

Frieze New York (May 2- 5)
Randalls Island Park, Randall’s Island / 11AM, $27+
“Plan to spend some serious time immersing yourself in imaginative projects from 200 international galleries, both indoors and out, at Randall’s Island Park. This year, some of the art fest’s works are displayed off-site and even virtually. Frieze has teamed up with real estate company Tishman Speyer for a free public sculpture park at Rockefeller Center that presents 20 statues crafted by 14 far-reaching artists. Plus, Acute Art’s Daniel Birnbaum curates an exhibition dedicated to virtual-reality in which tech-loving aesthetes can view works in an immersive booth. If you can’t make it to the island, you can still experience the fest: Five hundred VR headsets are free to use at the aforementioned sculpture park, the Standard High Line and the Standard East Village.” (TONY)


Continuing Events

Tribeca Film Festival (April 24 to May 5)

“Robert De Niro and Co.’s Tribeca Film Festival has long shown a spotlight on local indie features, documentaries, foreign films, the latest from big-name talent and the greatest from up-and-coming filmmakers.

TimeOutNY has got your complete one-stop-shopping guide to Tribeca Film Festival: their personal must-see picks, movie screenings, ticket info, a list of nearby bars and restaurants and much more.”

See Also:
IndieWire – Tribeca 2019: 12 Must-See Films at This Year’s Festival, From Danny Boyle to a Wild ‘Showgirls’ Doc.
CBS News – 15 highlights at the 2019 Tribeca Film Festival in NYC. (NYMag) – Tribeca Film Festival What to see at the independent film fest.


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.

♦ 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.”

In Memoriam:
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 are two exhibitions the New Yorker likes:

And from New York Magazine:

Nadav Kander (thru May 25)
A dark line.
“Known for his landscapes, the British photographer’s latest work brings the viewer to a particular point in the U.K.: the Thames Estuary, where the river meets the North Sea. The results are visually arresting and somewhat haunting.” (NYMag)
Flowers Gallery, 529 West 20th Street.


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 04/30 and 04/28.

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