NYC Events,”Only the Best” (05/04) + Museum Special Exhibitions: Manhattan’s WestSide

“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.”

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

Maren Morris: GIRL The World Tour 2019
Terminal 5 / 8PM, $50
“In her lush ballads and powerhouse anthems, the pliable singer-songwriter mingles the bliss of romance with calls for equality and claims to independence.

Pop and country music’s synergy lives on through Maren Morris. On “Girl,” her second album, the pliable singer-songwriter navigates womanhood in lush ballads and powerhouse anthems that paint her, in turns, as a down-home girl-with-guitar and an elegant dynamo diva. But she’s not here to just shut up and sing. In her music, the bliss of romance mingles with calls for equality and claims to independence, themes that bolster a grander artistic statement—that Morris isn’t interested in being anyone but herself.” (NewYorker)

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7 OTHER TOP NYC EVENTS TODAY (see below for full listing)
>>
AUSTRALIA FESTIVAL
>> CONVERSATIONS WITH MERCE
>> Gilad Hekselman
>> Lincoln Center: 60th anniversary Block Party
>> Chelsea Gallery Tour
>> Art New York
>> Frieze New York

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Music, Dance, Performing Art

AUSTRALIA FESTIVAL (through May 12)
at the Joyce Theater / 2PM, 8PM, $35+
“This event continues with performances by Australian Dance Theater (Friday to Monday) and the Australian Ballet (May 9 to 12). For its program, Australian Dance Theater explores the natural world in “The Beginning of Nature,” which is set to a score sung in Kaurna, the first language of the Indigenous peoples of the Adelaide Plains of South Australia. The Australian Ballet wraps up the festival with a trio of dances: Alice Topp’s “Aurum,” Stephen Baynes’s “Unspoken Dialoguesfollows” and a yet-to-be-titled premiere by Tim Harbour.” (NYT)

CONVERSATIONS WITH MERCE (May 3-4)
at N.Y.U. Skirball Center for the Performing Arts / 7:30 p.m.; $25
“The Merce Cunningham Centennial festivities continue with three new works celebrating the choreographer’s legacy. This presentation, curated by Rashaun Mitchell, a former company member and a trustee with the Merce Cunningham Trust, explores the theoretical, practical and experiential approaches to Cunningham’s work. Three respected choreographers take part: Moriah Evans, Mina Nishimura and Netta Yerushalmy. In their responses to his lineage, they focus on conceptual, formal and personal connections with the choreographer. In addition to the commissioned works, Cunningham solos will be performed by Shayla-Vie Jenkins and Keith Sabado.” (NYT)

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)

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Smart Stuff / Other NYC EventS

If the weather was better, this would be my top event today:

Lincoln Center: 60th anniversary Block Party
Lincoln Center / 10am-2:30pm; FREE
“In honor of the world-famous music campus’s 60th anniversary. With activities for all ages, the event brings together all of the 11 organizations that comprise Lincoln Center—bringing a range of performances, art-making, film programming, tours, food trucks, and more. The Block Party culminates in a grand finale on the iconic plaza with more than 135 musicians, conducted by Musical Director Sunny Jain from atop the Revson Fountain.” (cityguideny.com)

Chelsea Gallery Tour
“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. May 4 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.” (cityguideny.com)

Meet at 526 W. 26th St. between 10th & 11th Ave. Admission is $25.
SPECIAL OFFER: visit our website (https://nygallerytours.com) to request a DISCOUNT ticket link for $8-off admission! For more info, visit http://www.nygallerytours.com or call 917-250-0052.

Art New York (5/2-5/5)
Get inspired at an art fair
at Pier 92/94 / 12-8PM, $25 one-day ticket; $55 multi-day ticket
“An important exhibition facility for the arts that annually attracts over 150,000 collectors. Art New York will offer both noteworthy and fresh works by important artists from the modern, post-war, and pop eras, and feature paintings, photography, prints, drawings, design, and sculpture.” (cityguideny.com)

“Whether you’re most moved by paintings, photography, prints, drawings, or sculptures, contemporary, modern, post-war, or pop art, you’ll find something that speaks to you at Art New York. The fair features nearly 300 artists from 18 countries, displaying both up-and-coming talent and the biggest of the big names (read: Shepard Fairey, Dali, Matisse, Picasso, and Warhol).” (thrillist)

Not as convenient as Art New York, but worth a look:

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)

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Continuing Events


Tribeca Film Festival (Last Weekend)

“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.
vulture.com (NYMag) – Tribeca Film Festival What to see at the independent film fest.

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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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COMING SOON (WFUV)
5/2-4, 5/7-8 Morrissey, Lunt-Fontaine Theatre
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

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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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WHAT’S ON VIEW
My Fave Special Exhibitions – MUSEUMS / Manhattan’s WestSide
(See the New York Times Arts Section for listings of all museums,
and also to see their expanded reviews of exhibitions)

Museum of Modern Art

“The Value of Good Design” (through June 15)

“The simple flask of the Chemex coffeemaker, the austere fan of aluminum tines on a garden rake, and the airtight allure of first-generation Tupperware exemplify the democratic promise of the Good Design movement in this edifying survey, which highlights (although not exclusively) the museum’s role in its history. Also on view—and among the winners of MOMA’s first design competition, held in 1940-41—is a molded plywood chair by Charles Eames and Eero Saarinen; it’s a classic design, but, owing to technological limitations in its day, it wasn’t mass-produced until 2006. Starting in 1938, MOMA mounted an annual exhibition called “Useful Objects,” which championed the inexpensive and doubled as recommendations for holiday gifts. No item had a value of more than five dollars the first year; a decade later, the limit was a hundred dollars. By the fifties, the museum had established partnerships with national retailers for the exhibited products, from textiles to appliances, and, in the eighties, it opened its own design store. In the current show, the most compelling items are the everyday gems: Timo Sarpaneva’s cast-iron and teak casserole, from 1959; the original Slinky, from 1945; and a collapsible wire basket, from 1953, as graceful as a Ruth Asawa sculpture.” (

“Joan Miró”  (through June 15)

“This enchanting show draws on the museum’s immense holdings of Miró’s work, along with a few loans. Its star attraction is “The Birth of the World,” painted in 1925, while the artist was under the spell of the Surrealist circle of André Breton. It presents drifting pictographic elements—a black triangle, a red disk, a white disk, an odd black hook shape, and some skittery lines—on an amorphous ground of thinned grayish paint that soaks here and there into the unevenly primed canvas. It’s large—more than eight feet high by more than six feet wide—but feels larger: cosmic. There had never been anything quite like it in painting, and it stood far apart from the formally conservative, lurid fantasizing of the other Surrealist painters. Today, we are ever less apt to base valuations on precedence—who did what first. Art of the past seems not so much a parade as a convocation, subject to case-by-case assessments. Never unsettling in the ways of, say, Matisse or, for heaven’s sake, Picasso, Miró is a modernist for everybody. He earns and will keep his place in our hearts.” (

American Museum of Natural History

‘T. REX: THE ULTIMATE PREDATOR’  (through Aug. 9, 2020).
“Everyone’s favorite 18,000-pound prehistoric killer gets the star treatment in this eye-opening exhibition, which presents the latest scientific research on T. rex and also introduces many other tyrannosaurs, some discovered only this century in China and Mongolia. T. rex evolved mainly during the Cretaceous Period to have keen eyes, spindly arms and massive conical teeth, which could bear down on prey with the force of a U-Haul truck; the dinosaur could even swallow whole bones, as affirmed here by a kid-friendly display of fossilized excrement. The show mixes 66-million-year-old teeth with the latest 3-D prints of dino bones, and also presents new models of T. rex as a baby, a juvenile and a full-grown annihilator. Turns out this most savage beast was covered with — believe it! — a soft coat of beige or white feathers.” (Farago-NYT)

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For other selected Museum and Gallery Special Exhibitions see Posts in right Sidebar dated 05/02 and 04/30.

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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.”

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NYT Theater Reviews – Our theater critics on the plays and musicals currently open in New York City.

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NYCity Vacation Travel Guide Video (Expedia):

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