NYC Events,”Only the Best” (06/07) + 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:  “June 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:

at Jazz Standard / 7:30 and 9:30 p.m.; $30
“A member of the prestigious SFJAZZ Collective, Sánchez uses his titanic gifts on the tenor saxophone to draw bold connecting lines between Afro-Caribbean tradition and the sound of contemporary New York jazz. On Friday he will release “Carib,” an album integrating traditional West African rhythms — often by way of Haiti and Sánchez’s native Puerto Rico — into sinuous original compositions. At Jazz Standard he will play selections from the album with Lage Lund on guitar, Ed Simon on piano, Ricky Rodriguez on bass, Obed Calvaire on drums, and Jhan Lee Aponte and Markus Schwartz doubling on percussion.” (NYT-GIOVANNI RUSSONELLO)


7 OTHER TOP NYC EVENTS TODAY (see below for full listing)
>> Jolie Holland
>> Hudson River Dance Festival
>> The Losers Lounge: Tribute to ABBA
>> Ravi Coltrane

>> American Ballet Theatre
>> Art Battle New York

You may want to look at previous days posts for events that continue through today.


Music, Dance, Performing Art

Jolie Holland
Rubin Museum of Art, 150 W. 17th St./
“Jolie Holland possesses a uniquely American voice that flits among genres—blues, jazz, old-time music—without settling into any one in particular. Even when cast alongside gnarled electric guitars, her earthy singing bends the ear. The Rubin Museum provides her with an apt showcase; she headlines the museum’s naturalistic Naked Soul series, which presents musicians freed not only of electric instrumentation—child’s play!—but of any microphones or amplification.” (Jay Ruttenberg, NewYorker)

Hudson River Dance Festival (June 6-7)
Pier 63, Hudson River Park / 7PM, FREE
This annual festival of free, sunset-backed shows at Pier 63, presented by Hudson River Park and the Joyce Theatre, has a particularly strong lineup this year. Along with the peerless tap dancer Dormeshia, there’s Taylor 2, chilling out with the lyrical classic “Aureole”; Doug Elkins, tossing everything into “O, Round Desire”; Ballet Hispánico, with the stylish “Sombrerísimo”; and Camille A. Brown & Dancers, in her New Orleans-inspired “New Second Line.” (Brian Seibert, NewYorker)

The Losers Lounge: Tribute to ABBA (June 6-8)
Joe’s Pub / 7PM, +9:30PM, $35
“Joe McGinty has led The Loser’s Lounge since the ’90s, paying tribute to a different artist every month with a cavalcade of guest vocalists. This weekend should be an especially good time as they’ll be singing the songs of ABBA.” (BrooklynVegan)

at St. Paul’s German Lutheran Church / 7:30 p.m.; $
“In its 10th anniversary season, this festival, run by the pianist Melinda Lee Masur and the conductor Ken-David Masur, celebrates the bicentennial of Clara Schumann’s birth. Friday’s gala concert features music by Clara and her husband, Robert, as well as festival commissions from Jane Antonia Cornish and Aigerim Seilova, two of 10 such commissions from female composers. Other highlights from the festival, which runs till June 15, include the Ghostlight Chorus on June 8, and a concert on June 14 inspired by the visual artist Lorna Simpson that has pieces by Clara Schumann, Anna Thorvaldsdottir, Amy Beach and Jessica Mays.” (NYT-David Allen)

Ravi Coltrane (June 4-8)
Birdland, 315 W. 44th St./ 8:30PM, + 11PM; $30+
“It took time and persistence, but Ravi Coltrane has thrown off the yoke of his familial legacy—he’s the son of John and Alice Coltrane—and emerged as an imaginative saxophonist, composer, and bandleader in his own right. Coltrane hasn’t released a new solo recording in a few years, but his impressive showing on the stirring 2016 release “In Movement,” with Jack DeJohnette and Matthew Garrison, still registers seismic activity. His own quartet features the venturing pianist David Virelles.” (Steve Futterman, NewYorker)

American Ballet Theatre (through July 6)
Metropolitan Opera House / 7:30PM, $22+
“Plan accordingly: The final performances of Twyla Tharp’s stellar triple bill consisting of the gems “Deuce Coupe,” “The Brahms-Haydn Variations” and “In the Upper Room” take place Friday, Saturday and Monday. Ballet Theater shifts its mood starting on Tuesday with the company premiere of Cathy Marston’s “Jane Eyre,” based on the Charlotte Brontë novel and featuring Devon Teuscher and James Whiteside as the leads on opening night. Marston, who choreographed the work for Northern Ballet in 2016, prides herself on bringing new perspectives to old narratives. As for the other principals who will take a stab at Jane? Isabella Boylston and Misty Copeland. The ballet continues through June 10.” (Gia Kourlas-NYT)
Tonight: Jane Eyre
Choreography: Cathy Marston


Smart Stuff / Other NYC EventS

Art Battle New York
Pick sides at an art battle
at (le) poisson rouge / 6-10PM, $20
“Started right here in New York in 2001, the Art Battle pits artist against artist in live, timed painting challenges. Each painter only gets a blank canvas, some acrylic paint, and twenty minutes to create a masterpiece. The audience decides who will make the final round — and get one step closer to the International Championship. Hosted at (Le) Poisson Rouge, expect music, booze, and a commentary on the commercialization of art (just kidding, just expect some music and booze).” (Thrillist)

Continuing Events

“Masters of the Fantastic” (thru June 8)
Society of Illustrators, 128 E63rd St. / 10AM-5PM, $15
“The Society of Illustrators celebrates the original artwork that of our most celebrated fictional worlds. Trip out as you look back on book covers, movie posters, fable illustrations, and concept designs that have expanded the possibilities of fantasy and sci-fi storytelling.” (TONY)
Subway: F to Lexington Ave–63rd St; N, Q, R to Lexington Ave–59th St; 4, 5, 6 to 59th St

OutdoorFest 2019 (thru June 9)
Various locations and prices
“OutdoorFest, a ten-day lineup of activities, classes and volunteering opportunities, aims to get New York apartment dwellers to engage with the natural environment around the five boroughs and beyond. Look up the full schedule and save your spot for canoeing, camping, bouldering, stand-up paddleboarding, hiking, running, surfing and more.” (TONY)

Underground Railroad Game (thru June 15)
A comedy, actually.
“Created by Jennifer Kidwell and Scott R. Sheppard with the Philly-based company Lightning Rod Special, the incendiary Underground Railroad Game returns to New York for 18 performances. Welcome to Hanover Middle School, where a pair of teachers tackle American history, race, sex, and power in a ferocious, sensational, very R-rated lesson.” (S.H.- NY Magazine)
Ars Nova at Greenwich House, 27 Barrow Street, May 30 to June 15.

at the Delacorte Theater (in previews; opens on June 11, thru June 23).
“Sigh no more, Shakespeare fans. Shakespeare in the Park — its tickets distributed free by line and lottery — returns with this sparkling comedy of sparring lovers. In postwar Messina, Beatrice (Danielle Brooks) and Benedick (Grantham Coleman) are a couple who despise each other. Until they don’t. Kenny Leon directs. ” (NYT-Alexis Soloski)


6/6-7 Local Natives w/ Middle Kids, Brooklyn Steel
6/8 The Mavericks, Beacon Theatre
6/8 Parquet Courts, Summerstage
6/8 Ibeyi, BRIC Celebrate Brooklyn! Festival
6/9-10 Beach House, Brooklyn Steel
6/11 Justin Townes Earle, City Winery
6/12 The National with Courtney Barnett, Celebrate Brooklyn – live broadcast on 90.7 FM
6/12 Happy Together Tour w/ The Turtles & more, St. George Theater

♦ 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.

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.

Josh Smith: Emo Jungle (through June 15)
A lush palette.
“Few painters could fill all three of David Zwirner’s giant white-cube spaces so convincingly. Josh Smith repeats a number of motifs: the Grim Reaper, a turtle-bird form, a four-legged human-spider creature. His electric color makes every painting different yet always as an expansion or response to all the rest. An encyclopedic joy.” (J.S.-NYMagazine)
David Zwirner, 525 West 19th Street.

Here is one exhibition the New Yorker likes:

and one the NYTimes likes:

‘JEFF WALL’ (extended through July 26)

“Rumination and risk-taking, in equal measure, mark this conceptual photographer’s spellbinding new exhibition. The show, Wall’s first at this Chelsea gallery since ending a 25-year run with the rival dealer Marian Goodman, feels decidedly introspective. Figures alone in contemplative trances, or alienated from their partners in scenes of evident tension, define most of the works. The encyclopedic visual literacy that has long characterized Wall’s pictures (with their compositional echoes of old master paintings) has been pared back, allowing more psychological complexity to emerge. Just as new is an emphasis on narrative and sequence; among the pieces are two diptychs and an enveloping, cinematic triptych.” (Karen Rosenberg)


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 06/05 and 05/28.

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.


Bonus#2 – 10 Plays and Musicals to Go to in N.Y.C. This Weekend New York Times (06/07/19)

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


NYCity Vacation Travel Guide Video (Expedia):


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