NYC Events,”Only the Best” (06/19) + 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:

Jazzmeia Horn (June 18-23)
Jazz Standard, 116 E. 27th St./ 7:30PM, +9:30PM, $30
“If nomenclature is destiny, Jazzmeia Horn was indeed born to swing. Maturing in what is proving to be a renaissance period for female jazz singers, Horn—who has won in both the Thelonious Monk and Sarah Vaughan vocal-jazz competitions—holds her own as an assured and spunky interpreter of song. The first three nights of this engagement find her welcoming into her quintet such heavyweights as the drummer Ralph Peterson and the saxophonist Stacy Dillard.” (Steve Futterman, NewYorker)


7 OTHER TOP NYC EVENTS TODAY (see below for full listing)
>> SummerStage
>> Pilobolus
>> The Scottish National Jazz Orchestra
>> American Ballet Theatre
>>Crosby, Stills, Nash, Young, and Springsteen
>> Book Launch: Don Kulick Presents “A Death in the Rainforest”

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


Music, Dance, Performing Art

SummerStage (also June 21)
SummerStage, Rumsey Playfield, Mid-Park / 8PM, FREE
“Dance performances at SummerStage in Central Park’s Rumsey Playfield used to come with a trade-off, the free entry offset by the frequent difficulty seeing the dancers’ feet. Now that the stage has been renovated, is the problem fixed? Here’s hoping, because Les Ballets Trockadero de Monte Carlo is making its SummerStage début (June 19), and to miss the on-point footwork of this all-male travesty troupe is to risk missing a lot: how accuracy sharpens the group’s humor, how the technique is almost too good to be a joke. Luckily, the stage at Herbert Von King Park, in Brooklyn, has never had a problem with sight lines. Ronald K. Brown/Evidence (June 21) will do to that space what the Brooklyn-based company always does: light it up with irresistible physicality and spirit.” (Brian Seibert, NewYorker)

Pilobolus (through June 29)
Joyce Theatre, 175 Eighth Ave. / 7:30PM, $55+
“For a long time, summer at the Joyce was synonymous with a monthlong encampment by this popular troupe of acrobat-illusionists. But five years have passed since the company’s last visit. How has the group evolved in the meantime? Its two comeback programs don’t offer many chances to find out; the most recent item is “Branches,” an ebb-and-flow nature study, from 2017. The most reliable selections, in any case, come from the better, stranger early period: “Day 2” (1980), with its primordial creatures and Slip ‘N Slide coda; “Walklyndon” (1971), with its silly stage crossings; and, best of all, “Untitled” (1972), a Victorian picnic for giantesses.” (Brian Seibert, NewYorker)

The Scottish National Jazz Orchestra (June 18–19)
Dizzy’s Club / 7:30PM, +9:30PM, $35
“The Scottish National Jazz Orchestra (SNJO) is one of Europe’s foremost contemporary big bands. Tonight, the Scottish National Jazz Orchestra invites you to enjoy new swinging big-band jazz interpretations of Prokofiev’s popular classical work, Peter & the Wolf.

The SNJO will be joined by leading Scots actor Tam Dean Burn to create a wildly vivid jazz version of Prokofiev’s famous cautionary fable. Combining virtuosity and ingenuity with striking theatricality, it’s a delightful collision between a folk tale and big-band swing with the music woven around expressive dialogue adapted by former Scots Makar (National Poet of Scotland) Liz Lochhead. Though full of fresh ideas, Smith’s orchestration remains true to the composer’s much-loved musical characterizations while being energized by the creation of new inventive ideas inspired by the ingenuous original score.”

American Ballet Theatre (through July 6)
Metropolitan Opera House/ 2PM,+7:30PM, $22+
“The company continues its Lincoln Center spring season with “Le Corsaire” through Saturday, followed by eight performances of Kenneth MacMillan’s sumptuous “Manon” beginning on Monday. In that performance, Hee Seo makes her debut in the titular role, opposite Roberto Bolle as Des Grieux. The full-length production is also Bolle’s swan song at Ballet Theater: On Thursday, he gives his farewell performance. And Wednesday’s matinee will surely be a hot ticket, too, with debuts by Misty Copeland, Catherine Hurlin and Calvin Royal III.” (NYT-Gia Kourlas)
Tonight: “Manon”

Elsewhere, but this looks worth the detour:

SEA WOLF (June 18-19)
at National Sawdust / 8 p.m.; $25
“Alex Brown Church, the creative mind behind this Los Angeles-based band, spins stormy romance and natural imagery into graceful indie-folk melodies. The group’s most recent project, “Song Spells No. 1: Cedarsmoke,” was a more experimental release funded through Kickstarter; in press materials, Church called it “not an official record.” Though it came out nearly five years ago, its songs have never been performed live by the full band. That will change on Tuesday and Wednesday, when they, accompanied by a string quartet, will take the project to the stage for the first time.” (NYT-OLIVIA HORN)


Smart Stuff / Other NYC EventS

Crosby, Stills, Nash, Young, and Springsteen
Book Culture on Columbus, 450 Columbus Ave./ 7PM, FREE
Join us for a conversation between David Browne, author of Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young, and Brian Hiatt, author of Bruce Springsteen: The Stories Behind the Songs.

“In Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young: The Wild, Definitive Saga of Rock’s Greatest Supergroup, longtime music journalist and Rolling Stone writer David Browne presents the ultimate deep dive into rock and roll’s most musical and turbulent brotherhood on the occasion of its 50th anniversary.

In Bruce Springsteen: The Stories Behind the Songs, longtime Rolling Stone writer Brian Hiatt digs into the writing and recording of these songs and all the others on Springsteen’s studio albums, from 1973’s Greetings from Asbury Park, N.J. to 2014’s High Hopes (plus all the released outtakes), and offers a unique look at the legendary rocker’s methods, along with historical context, scores of colorful anecdotes, and more than 180 photographs.”

Elsewhere, but this looks worth the detour:

Book Launch: Don Kulick Presents “A Death in the Rainforest”
Greenlight Bookstore, 686 Fulton St./ 7:30PM, FREE
“Over three decades, anthropologist Don Kulick watched the precipitous decline of Tayap, the unique language of a remote Papua New Guinea village. He’ll launch his new book, A Death in the Rainforest: How a Language and a Way of Life Came to an End in Papua New Guinea, which tells the story of a culture and encroachment.” (ThoughtGallery)

Continuing Events

at the Delacorte Theater (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)


6/19 Father John Misty with Jason Isbell, BRIC Celebrate Brooklyn! Festival
6/19 The Lumineers, Pioneer Works

♦ 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.

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 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 06/17 and 06/15.

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.


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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