NYC Events,”Only the Best” (06/27) + 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:  “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:

Sean Jones: Dizzy Spellz (June 27–29)
Dizzy’s Club / 7:30PM, +9:30PM, $40
“Tonight we welcome modern trumpet icon and former Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra member Sean Jones back to Dizzy’s Club! In the unique program called Dizzy Spellz, the music and life story of Dizzy Gillespie are used as a lens to explore an intersection of cultural and spiritual dilemmas within the African Diaspora. Created with choreographer, tap dancer, and vocalist Brinae Ali, Dizzy Spells offers an innovative, Afro–futuristic fusion of jazz, tap, and bebop.

From Dizzy’s coming of age through the racial and social dynamics in the Deep South, to his creating and curating the bebop movement in New York, to his spiritual journey to Africa, and, finally, his delving into Afro-Cuban music and the Baha’i Faith, Dizzy was a complex man well ahead of his time and with plenty of stories to tell. Don’t miss the debut performance of Dizzy Spellz at Jazz at Lincoln Center, also featuring Wendell Patrick, Obed Calvaire, and the Curtis Brothers.”


7 OTHER TOP NYC EVENTS TODAY (see below for full listing)
>> France Rocks Festival: KOKI NAKANO + ¿QUE VOLA?
>> Ethan Iverson

>> Django Reinhardt Festival
>> Above and Beyond: Ceiling Painting in the History of Art
>> How to Stay Human in a F*cked-Up World: Mindfulness Practices for Real Life
>> Charles Ebbetts The Man Behind the Dodgers
>> Whose Streets? Reclaiming NYC for Cyclists

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


Music, Dance, Performing Art

France Rocks Festival: KOKI NAKANO + ¿QUE VOLA?
Nø Førmat! 15th Anniversary
Atrium @ Lincoln Center / 7:30PM, FREE
“¿Que Vola?, or “What’s Up?” in the argot of La Havana, is a unique musical project that brings together seven of France’s best young jazz musicians with a trio of highly skilled Cuban percussionists. The brainchild of trombonist Fidel Fourneyron, ¿Que Vola? takes the magnetic power of sacred Afro-Cuban rhythms, with their invocations to African gods, and envelopes them in the poesy of John Coltrane. Brass and wind take the place of chants and voices in a trance-inducing dialogue with the deep rhythms of the bata drums. Experience their unique, raw, and captivating sound at this 15th anniversary celebration of the Nø Førmat record label.”

Ethan Iverson (June 25-29)
Village Vanguard, 178 Seventh Ave. S./ 8:30PM, +10:30PM, $35
“Ethan Iverson, the former pianist of the Bad Plus—which, in a new incarnation, is playing at Jazz Standard this week—goes minimal for the first three nights of this engagement, pairing up with the tenor saxophonist Mark Turner, with whom he cut the engrossing duo recording “Temporary Kings” last year. For the remainder of the residency, Iverson fronts a quartet and delves into standards with another challenging soloist, the trumpeter Tom Harrell.” (Steve Futterman, NewYorker)

Django Reinhardt Festival (June 25-29)
Birdland, 315 W. 44th St./ 8:30PM, $40-$50
“Django Reinhardt, the original guitar hero, was a Belgian-born Romany who, despite a seriously damaged fretting hand, set a template for virtuosic jazz guitar that still casts an expansive shadow over the European musical community. This annual lovefest features the French guitarist Samson Schmitt and includes such improvisers as the saxophonist Grace Kelly and the trombonist Chris Washburne.” (Steve Futterman, NewYorker)


Smart Stuff / Other NYC EventS

Above and Beyond: Ceiling Painting in the History of Art
The Frick Collection, 1 E. 70th St./ 2-6PM, FREE, registration required
“Inspired by the special exhibition Tiepolo in Milan: The Lost Frescoes of Palazzo Archinto, this symposium examines the practice of ceiling painting across time and place. Speakers include early-career university and museum professionals, as well as doctoral candidates.” (ThoughtGallery)

How to Stay Human in a F*cked-Up World: Mindfulness Practices for Real Life
Bryant Park/Bryant Park Reading Room
Between 40th & 42nd Sts. and Fifth and Sixth Aves./ 12;30PM, FREE
“Buddhist philosopher and psychology lecturer Tim Desmond talks about his new book, How to Stay Human in a F*cked-Up World: Mindfulness Practices for Real Life. Join him for a lunchtime presentation that offers practical paths to self-growth and connection.” (ThoughtGallery)

“Despite an absent father, childhood homelessness, and losing a wife to cancer, Desmond has emerged with not only inner strength and joyful resilience, but also a deep understanding of human suffering necessary to advocate for those hurting all over the world. Through his work, Desmond realized the truth: we don’t need a mindfulness practice for productivity or sleep, and it shouldn’t come from religion, philosophy, or hypothetical situations. Instead, mindfulness should be rooted in the pain, sadness, loneliness, and trauma of the here and now, because it is the only true antidote for this sometimes-miserable world we call home.”

Author Talk: Charles Ebbetts The Man Behind the Dodgers
New York Public Library—Grand Central Library, 135 E. 46th St./ 6PM, FREE
“Society for American Baseball Research Ron Gabriel Award-winning author John Zinn talks about his new biography spotlighting Charles Ebbets. Ebbets was as vital a figure as there was in Major League Baseball’s Deadball Era, organizing four pennant-winning clubs and developing one of the most profitable franchises in the game—while building two state-of-the-art ballparks in Brooklyn.”

Whose Streets? Reclaiming NYC for Cyclists
Museum of the City of New York, 1220 Fifth Ave./ 7PM, $12
“Over 800,000 New Yorkers are now riding a bicycle regularly (NYC DOT). As the subways falter, transit fares increase and the streets grow ever more congested, cycling offers a more efficient way to get around the city, becoming a key part of the city’s commuting network. However, cyclists’ attempts to share the streets with cars and pedestrians continue to stir intense community debates around issues of safety and regulation.

How can we rethink the relationship between cycling and the city for the benefit of all? Join us for a conversation with urban planners, biking advocates and experts about how New York City could achieve a shared “right to the road” for everyone, on two wheels or otherwise.”

Continuing Events

RIVER TO RIVER FESTIVAL at various locations (through June 29).

“Hurricane Sandy hit South Street Seaport hard in 2012. Now that event is part subject and that site is part performance space for Jennifer Monson’s new work, “Ditch,” which also explores gentrification and income inequality. One performance takes place at sunrise on Sunday at Pier 35 on the East River Esplanade; two more occur at the South Street Seaport Museum on Wednesday and June 28 at 7 p.m. Also this week, the witty, rigorous Sarah Michelson presents the New York premiere of “june2019:/\” for three performances on Monday and two on Wednesday, the location of which will be divulged only to those who R.S.V.P.” (NYT-Brian Schaeffer)



6/27-29 Drive-By Truckers, Brooklyn Bowl
6/28 Jackson Browne w/Lucius, Beacon Theatre
6/28, Gov’t Mule, Stone Pony Summerstage
6/29 Liz Phair w/Ted Leo and the Pharmacists, BRIC Celebrate Brooklyn! Festival
6/29 Garland Jeffreys, City Winery
7/2 Midsummer Night Swing w/ Joe McGinty & Loser’s Lounge and Silent Disco w/FUV’s Rita Houston, Damrosch Park Lincoln Center
7/2 Matisyahu, City Winery
7/3 Bedouine, Brooklyn Mirage

♦ 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.

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)

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)


at Grey Art Gallery (through July 20) and at Leslie-Lohman Museum (through July 21).
“For this summer’s half-century anniversary of the 1969 Stonewall riots, substantial displays of art produced in the long wake of the uprising are filling New York City museums and public spaces. The largest is this two-part exhibition, organized by Jonathan Weinberg and shared by Grey Art Gallery at N.Y.U. and Leslie-Lohman Museum. The Leslie-Lohman half, which focuses on the 1970s and has lots of archival matter, feels tight and combustible. Much of what’s in it was hot off the political burner, responsive to crisis conditions. The pace at Grey, where much of the work dates from the 1980s, is more measured, but has tensions of its own as the story encompasses AIDS and the culture wars. (NYT-Holland Cotter)

at the Whitney Museum of American Art (through Sept. 22).
“Given the political tensions that have sent spasms through the nation over the past two years, you might have expected — hoped — that this year’s biennial would be one big, sharp Occupy-style yawp. It isn’t. Politics are present but, with a few notable exceptions, murmured, coded, stitched into the weave of fastidiously form-conscious, labor-intensive work. As a result, the exhibition, organized by two young Whitney curators, Rujeko Hockley and Jane Panetta, gives the initial impression of being a well-groomed group show rather than a statement of resistance. But once you start looking closely, the impression changes artist by artist, piece by piece — there’s quiet agitation in the air.” (NYT-Cotter)


at the Museum of Jewish Heritage (through Jan. 3).
“Killing as a communal business, made widely lucrative by the Third Reich, permeates this traveling exhibition about the largest German death camp, Auschwitz, whose yawning gatehouse, with its converging rail tracks, has become emblematic of the Holocaust. Well timed, during a worldwide surge of anti-Semitism, the harrowing installation strives, successfully, for fresh relevance. The exhibition illuminates the topography of evil, the deliberate designing of a hell on earth by fanatical racists and compliant architects and provisioners, while also highlighting the strenuous struggle for survival in a place where, as Primo Levi learned, “there is no why.” (NYT-Ralph Blumenthal)

For other selected Museum and Gallery Special Exhibitions see Posts in right Sidebar dated 06/25 and 06/23.


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.”


Bonus#2 – 9 Plays and Musicals to Go to in N.Y.C. This Weekend New York Times (06/20/19)

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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