NYC Events,”Only the Best” (12/28) + 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:  “December 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 the Jazz Gallery / 7:30 and 9:30 p.m.; $35, may need to try the late set.
“Few vocalists have as distinctive a sound as Parlato, whose sibilant, sighing soprano and querying, half-spoken inflection — influenced by Brazilian bossa nova, folk and romantic crooners past — have made her one of the most immediately recognizable figures in jazz. She won the Thelonious Monk International Jazz Competition in the mid-2000s, then put out a run of acclaimed releases, but Parlato has not made a new album under her name in years. Maybe that will soon change: Here she will debut a work commissioned by the Jazz Gallery titled “The Stars or Space Between.” Camila Meza will join in on guitar, Chris Morrissey on bass and Mark Guiliana on drums.” (NYT-GIOVANNI RUSSONELLO)


7 OTHER TOP NYC EVENTS TODAY (see below for full listing)

>> Freddy Cole Quartet
>> KWANZAA CELEBRATION: Regeneration Night
>> Sandra Bernhard: Sandy’s Holiday Extravaganza—A Decade of Madness and Mayhem
>> Inside the Holographer’s Laboratory
>> Whiskey Wars Tour and Tasting

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


Music, Dance, Performing Arts

Freddy Cole Quartet
Birdland / 8:30PM, +11PM, $40-$50, may be a tough ticket, try the late set.
“The New York Times calls Freddy Cole, “the most maturely expressive male jazz singer of his generation, if not the best alive.” People Magazine praises his, “gorgeous autumnal baritone, expressive phrasing and pitch-perfect feel for jazz standards, pop tunes and love ballads.” Uncle to Natalie Cole, brother of Nat “King” Cole, pianist and vocalist Freddy Cole doesn’t apologize for sounding a little bit like his iconic elder brother as he tantalizes listeners all over the world. Cole’s annual visit is the perfect blend of jazz and great American standards.”
GD: the younger Freddy was just as good as his brother, for jazz fans maybe better. Now he’s past peak Freddy, but you still should hear him while you can.

Spend a night at the historic Apollo
Apollo Theater / 2PM, +7:30PM, $25+
“For its 13th Regeneration Night — an annual Kwanzaa tradition in New York City — the Apollo Theater has joined with Abdel Salaam’s Forces of Nature dance company and the childrens’ KIPP AMP Legacy Jazz Ensemble to celebrate the holiday. With stunning music and dance performances, the yearly show embodies the Seven Principles of Kwanzaa: Umoja, Unity; Kujichagulia, Self-determination; Ujima; Collective work and responsibility, Ujamaa, Cooperative economics; Nia, Purpose; Kuumba, Creativity; and Imani, Faith.” (Thrillist)

Sandra Bernhard: Sandy’s Holiday Extravaganza—A Decade of Madness and Mayhem (Dec.26-30)
Joe’s Pub at the Public Theater / 7PM, +9:30PM,, $70
“The Divine Sandra’s best work gives pop culture a big, sloppy kiss, while simultaneously biting it on the lip. Her annual year-capping residency at Joe’s Pub blends irony, wistfulness, sentiment and tongue-in-cheek (or are they?) rock songs. In this year’s tenth edition, she reflects on a volatile decade and looks forward to what’s to come.” (TONY)

at New York City Center / 2PM, +8PM, $29+
“If you have never seen the Alvin Ailey Dance Company, then this would be the perfect season to start — the monthlong residency at City Center will include classics from the Ailey repertory (check out “Revelations” if you never have) as well as premieres by super of-the-moment dancemaker Camille A. Brown (the genius who choreographed Choir Boy on Broadway) and Donald Byrd, whose new work, “Greenwood,” is about the 1921 attack on “Black Wall Street” in Tulsa — the same act of terrorism that opens the first season of Watchmen.” (NYMag, H.S.)

at Smoke / 7, 9 and 10:30 p.m.; $45
“Henderson, a trumpeter, and Reed, a pianist, are a generation apart — but both play with understatement and grace, placing an emphasis on where funk and swing converge. Here they perform as part of Smoke’s annual John Coltrane Festival in a quintet featuring the tenor saxophonist Eric Alexander, the bassist John Webber and the drummer Joe Farnsworth.” (NYT-GIOVANNI RUSSONELLO)


Smart Stuff / Other NYC EventS
(Lectures, Discussions, Book Talks, Literary Readings, Classes, Food & Drink, Other)

Inside the Holographer’s Laboratory
Holographic Studios / 11AM-12:30PM, $35
“Holographic Studios is the world’s oldest holography gallery. On this private guided tour, you will learn the secrets of true 3D holography. You’ll go behind the scenes at the gallery and see the subterranean laser laboratory, where holograms are made. You’ll have an opportunity to see special jaw-dropping holograms not on public view.” (ThoughtGallery)

Elsewhere, but this looks worth the detour:

Whiskey Wars Tour and Tasting
Brooklyn Navy Yard, 63 Flushing Ave./ 4:30PM, $25
“Award-winning whiskey, historical facts, and local lore converge on the Whiske sweary Wars Tour and Tasting! Starting at BLDG 92, visitors will get a crash course in BNY history from 1801 to the present with a quick stop in the exhibition Brooklyn Navy Yard: Past, Present & Future. This introduction sets the stage for a deep-dive into an American classic with a Brooklyn flair…learning about whiskey from the experts at Kings County Distillery (KCD)! Once at KCD, visitors will learn about the whiskey wars scandals of the nineteenth century, the effect of prohibition on whiskey in the United States, and visitors will also get a chance to see the distilling process by visiting KCD’s barrel room and distilling floor. A sip of tradition or experimentation included with the tour!”

Continuing Events

NYC holiday markets – five to explore.  (Newsday)


WHEN | WHERE Oct. 31-Jan. 5, 11 a.m.-8 p.m. Monday-Friday and 10 a.m.-8 p.m. Saturday-Sunday, 40th Street and Sixth Avenue


WHEN | WHERE Nov. 21-Dec. 24, 11 a.m.-8 p.m. Monday-Friday, 10 a.m.-8 p.m. Saturday and 11 a.m.-7 p.m. Sunday, Union Square Park’s southern side


WHEN | WHERE Dec. 4-24, 10 a.m.-8 p.m. Monday-Friday, 10 a.m.-8 p.m. Saturday and 10 a.m.-7 p.m. Sunday, 59th Street and Central Park West


WHEN | WHERE Nov. 18-Dec. 24, 10 a.m.-8 p.m. Monday-Friday, 10 a.m.-7 p.m. Saturday and 11 a.m.-6 p.m. Sunday (closed Thanksgiving; open 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Christmas Eve), Vanderbilt Hall at Grand Central Terminal, 89 E. 42nd St.


WHEN | WHERE Nov. 24 and Dec. 1, 8, 15 and 22, 10 a.m.-5:30 p.m., 100 W. 77th St.


Holiday windows in NYC you won’t want to miss

“‘Tis the season! As Thanksgiving draws near, New York City’s department stores are unveiling their holiday windows. Macy’s, Bergdorf Goodman, Saks Fifth Avenue, American Girl and others are each putting their festive foot forward for the holidays.” (amNY)

Here is the extensive Holiday Windows rundown from amNY.


NYS Theater, Lincoln Center/ TODAY: 2PM, +8PM,; $95+
“’Twas the day after Thanksgiving and all through the land, ballet companies began trotting out productions of “The Nutcracker,” a holiday dance tradition most grand. And in New York, the grandest among them is City Ballet’s, formally known as “George Balanchine’s The Nutcracker,” which has been performed since 1954. That title rightly emphasizes this version’s secret weapon: Act II’s glorious choreography, particularly the breathtaking final pas de deux between the Sugarplum Fairy and her cavalier. Act I has its own virtuosic feat in the form of a supersize Christmas tree, which captures all the magic and wonder of this familiar tale.” (NYT-Brian Schaefer)


“The Waltz of the Snowflakes becomes a nor’easter this week with a deluge of “Nutcracker” productions around town. Among them are Dances Patrelle’s “The Yorkville Nutcracker,” set in 19th-century New York (Friday to Sunday, the Kaye Playhouse, Hunter College); New York Theater Ballet’s hourlong “Keith Michael’s the Nutcracker” (Friday to Sunday, Florence Gould Hall); a hip-hop infused “The Brooklyn Nutcracker” by Brooklyn Ballet (Saturday, Kings Theater); the wacky “Nut/Cracked” by the Bang Group (Dec. 19-21, the Flea Theater); a traditional staging by National Ballet Theater of Odessa (Saturday, New Jersey Performing Arts Center); and, of course, the splendid “George Balanchine’s the Nutcracker” by New York City Ballet (David H. Koch Theater, through Jan. 5). ” (NYT)



check back Next Week

Fall Concerts (

David Byrne’s American Utopia on Broadway
October 4­, 2019–January 19, 2020
Hudson Theatre
“The Talking Heads frontman hits Broadway with a show based on his latest album—but you can expect some old favorites as well.”

♦ 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 2019 – the ninth consecutive year. 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 are three exhibitions the Vulture (NY Magazine) likes:

One Hundred Drawings (thru Jan.18)
New work from Jasper Johns.
“Matthew Marks curates exhibitions as well or better than most museums.
Witness the dazzling, harmonic optical convergence of 100 drawings spanning three centuries, starting with a Degas from 1859-60 and a late-19th-century ink-and-gouache drawing of a tiger hunt with elephants from northern India. Pros will be astounded at unearthed treasures; art lovers are guaranteed to be transported, surprised, enraptured, and enriched.” —Jerry Saltz
Matthew Marks Gallery, 523 West 24th Street,

See Jordy Kerwick
Beautifully bizarre.
“This gallery right in the belly of the Chelsea beast deserves more attention. Currently there are the oddities of painter Jordy Kerwick, who gives us strange still-lifes of flowers in vases that sit on art books. Your eye zooms in on the florals, the text on book jackets, then gets completely bombarded by the vibrant color, primitive but wonderful touch, and collaged bits.” —Jerry Saltz
Anna Zorina Gallery, 532 West 24th Street, through January 18.

Ugo Rondinone
A tribute to his love.
“Ugo Rondinone honors his late husband, the legendary poet and former Andy Warhol superstar John Giorno. In a multichannel video installation, Giorno reads a poem speaking to all his friends, lovers, and enemies from the grave. It is as riveting as it is beautiful, filled with love, irony, and triple-edged intensity. He wishes everyone more sex, more drugs, more revelations of life. Amen, poet.” —J.S.
Gladstone Gallery, 530 West 21st Street, through January 18.


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 12/26 and 12/24.

11 Plays and Musicals to Go to in N.Y.C. This Weekend – NewYorkTimes (12/26/19)

Must-see theater coming to New York City stages this fall (amNY)

10 must-see Off-Broadway shows (amNY)


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

and, drum roll, here are all the media critics opinions on all the plays – Playbill’s “the Verdict”

For good, comprehensive and current info:

Broadway Shows: What to See and How to Get Cheap Tickets (NYT)

finally, lot’s of useful info on TKTS discount tickets from the headout blog:

Everything You Need to Know About TKTS Broadway Tickets


NYCity Vacation Travel Guide Video (Expedia):
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