NYC Events,”Only the Best” (02/21) + Today’s Featured Pub (WestVillage)

“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:  “February 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:

New York City Ballet (through March 1)
NYS Theater, Lincoln Center / 8PM, $78+
“Where would the art of ballet be without “Swan Lake”? Even this company, not known for its allegiance to evening-length story ballets, has a version (which it will perform Feb. 14-23). This staging dates back to 1996, when Peter Martins—the company’s former artistic director—created it for the Royal Danish Ballet. (A bit of trivia: the choreographer Alexei Ratmansky danced it when he was a member of the Danish company, in the nineties.) Three years later, Martins brought it to N.Y.C.B. The staging is swift and a bit dry, and it includes a second virtuoso male role, for a pesky jester who flits about the stage in great, flying leaps. It also includes some choreography by Balanchine, from a previous, one-act version. The abstract, color-coded designs are by the Danish painter Per Kirkeby.” (Marina Harss, NewYorker)

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7 OTHER TOP NYC EVENTS TODAY (see below for full listing)
>> Trio 3
>> Drive-By Truckers
>> Passport to Dance: Perfect skill
>> Renée Fleming Sings Björk
>> Fatoumata Diawara
>> New York City Ballet
>> BILL FRISELL

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

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Music, Dance, Performing Arts

Trio 3 (Feb.20-23)
Jazz Standard, 116 E. 27th St./
“The saxophonist Oliver Lake, the bassist Reggie Workman, and the drummer Andrew Cyrille—all veterans of a heady era when the basic conventions of jazz were morphing into challenging new forms—have now convened as Trio 3. For this engagement, they’re joined by Vijay Iyer, David Virelles, Marilyn Crispell, and Jason Moran, four of the most flexible and adventurous pianists working today, for an intergenerational meeting of aligned spirits.” (Steve Futterman, NewYorker)

Drive-By Truckers
A night of blazing truth and reflection.
Webster Hall / 8PM, $35
Drive-By Truckers have been serving up white-hot, blistering roots rock since the late ’90s, scoring classics with the withering Southern Rock Opera and The Dirty South and working with talented performers like Bettye LaVette. Their latest, The Unraveling, is one of the most prescient protest albums of the current era.” (Craig Jenkins, vulture.com, NY Mag)

Harkness Dance Festival
Passport to Dance: Perfect skill (Feb.21-22)
See work from an award-winning Korean choreographer
92Y/ 8PM, $35+
“At the 92nd Street Y’s Harkness Dance Festival, international choreographers present works that have never been performed in the United States. This weekend, you can catch Perfect Skill, choreographed by South Korea’s Jaewoo Jung and performed by Korean dance company Braveman, where Jaewoo is the artistic director. In Perfect Skill, four dancers are lit by ever-moving flashlights, revealing the body as a place of beauty, grace, and even — after a hilarious duet — absurdity.” (thrillist)

Hear Project 19
Renée Fleming Sings Björk (Feb.20-22)
New York Philharmonic with “America’s Diva.”
David Geffen Hall, Lincoln Center / 7:30PM, $29+
“Björk’s high, icy voice is so perfectly suited to her tunes that they practically meld in the mind, but the plush-voiced soprano Renée Fleming gives two of them new incarnations as orchestral songs. The program, part of the orchestra’s celebration of the 19th Amendment’s centenary, includes a world premiere by Ellen Reid.” (J.D., Vulture, NY Mag)

Fatoumata Diawara
Town Hall, 123 W. 43rd St./ 8PM, $35
“Fatoumata Diawara’s videos are hyper-vivid and screaming with color, but, even if you were to remove the visual elements from her work, the Malian artist’s music would still be luminous. Her Grammy-nominated album, “Fenfo,” from 2018, is a clear example of how she embraces brightness: she amplifies African rhythms and Wassoulou traditions of storytelling with her deep, commanding voice and unrelenting electric guitars, which rip through her songs like beautiful streaks of lightning.” (Julyssa Lopez, NewYorker)

New York City Ballet (through March 1)
NYS Theater, Lincoln Center / 7:30PM, $78+
“Where would the art of ballet be without “Swan Lake”? Even this company, not known for its allegiance to evening-length story ballets, has a version (which it will perform Feb. 14-23). This staging dates back to 1996, when Peter Martins—the company’s former artistic director—created it for the Royal Danish Ballet. (A bit of trivia: the choreographer Alexei Ratmansky danced it when he was a member of the Danish company, in the nineties.) Three years later, Martins brought it to N.Y.C.B. The staging is swift and a bit dry, and it includes a second virtuoso male role, for a pesky jester who flits about the stage in great, flying leaps. It also includes some choreography by Balanchine, from a previous, one-act version. The abstract, color-coded designs are by the Danish painter Per Kirkeby.” (Marina Harss, NewYorker)

BILL FRISELL (Feb.18-23)
at the Blue Note / 8 and 10:30 p.m.; $20, $35
“Each of the ensembles Frisell has in store for this six-day run promises something rewarding. The challenge is deciding which to pick. For the first two nights, this folk-inflected experimental guitar hero will play in a trio with two of his frequent collaborators, the bassist Thomas Morgan and the drummer Kenny Wollesen. On Feb. 20-21, he will be in duet with the expert trumpeter Ambrose Akinmusire, and from Feb. 22 to 23 he will present a quintet featuring Akinmusire, Wollesen, the saxophonist Greg Tardy and the bassist Tony Scherr.” (NYT-GIOVANNI RUSSONELLO)

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

More smart stuff coming tomorrow.


Continuing Events

The Orchid Show: Jeff Leatham’s Kaleidoscope

Saturday, February 15, 2020 – Sunday, April 19, 2020

Experience Famed Designer Jeff Leatham’s Bold and Colorful Vision

“The dazzling floral creations of Jeff Leatham, famed artistic director of the Four Seasons Hotel George V, Paris and floral designer to the stars, energize the 18th annual Orchid Show. Leatham’s bold and colorful vision unfolds through captivating installations and designs, transforming each gallery of the exhibition in the historic Enid A. Haupt Conservatory into a different color experience and visual effect, like the turn of a kaleidoscope.

Thousands of orchids provide bursts of forms and colors—in purples, reds, oranges, and hot pink—revealed through overhead arches, vine-inspired ribbons, mirrored sculpture, dramatic lighting, and other artistic embellishments.”

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COMING SOON (WFUV)

2/21 Drive By Truckers, Webster Hall
2/21 The Weight Band, Brooklyn Bowl
2/21 Jeffrey Osborne, Sony Hall
2/22 Live From Here with Chris Thile, Town Hall
2/22 Ms. Lauryn Hill, United Palace
2/23 The Woody Guthrie Center Presents “This Land Is Your Land,” The Town Hall
2/23 Altan, Symphony Space
2/23 Ari Hest, City Vineyard
2/24 Black Lips, Music Hall of Williamsburg
2/24 Wolf Parade, Brooklyn Steel
2/25 Stone Temple Pilots, Gramercy Theatre
2/25 Rhys Lewis, Mercury Lounge
2/26 Tibet House Benefit Concert, Carnegie Hall
2/26 Natalie Merchant, Jazz At Lincoln Center
2/26 Glass Animals, Music Hall of Williamsburg

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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 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.

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A PremierPub / West Village

Corner Bistro 331 W. 4th St.

Sometimes you just need a beer and a burger. If so, Corner Bistro is the place you want. Located just outside the hip Meatpacking district, this corner bar and grill is decidedly unhip, but it’s not uncrowded, especially at night. Seems that everyone knows this place has one of the better burgers in town.

kac_120405_phude_corner_bistro_bar_1000-600x450In the maze of streets known as the West Village, where West 4th intersects with West 12th (and West 11th, and West 10th, go figure), you will eventually find Corner Bistro on the corner of West 4th and Jane Street. An unassuming neighborhood tavern, it looks just like dozens of other taverns around town.

The bartender tells me that the Corner Bistro celebrated it’s 55th anniversary last year. The well worn interior tells me that the place itself is much older.

Corner Bistro has outlasted many of those other taverns around town because they know how to keep it simple — just good burgers and beer, fairly priced. The classic bistro Burger is only $9.75, and should be ordered medium rare, which will be plenty rare for most folks. Actually, it will be a juicy, messy delight – make sure you have extra napkins. I like to pull up a stool and sit by the large front window in the afternoon, where I can rest my burger and beer on the shelf, and watch the Villagers walk by.

Corner Bistro seems to attract very different groups of patrons depending on time of day. While it’s crowded with locals in the evening, in the afternoon you hear different foreign languages, and watch groups of euro tourists wander in, led by their guidebooks and smartphones.

For the classic Bistro experience, order your burger with a McSorley’s draft, the dark preferably. This is the same beer that you can get over at the original McSorley’s in the East Village, the pub that claims to be the oldest continually operating bar in NYCity. The only difference is that this McSorley’s ale is served with a smile by the bartenders here. Or you can get a Sierra Nevada, Stella, or Hoegaarden on tap if you want to go upscale a bit. Either way this is a simple, but quality burger and beer experience that is just too rare these days (sorry for the pun).
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Website: cornerbistrony.com
Phone #: 212-242-9502
Hours: 11:30am-4am Mon-Sat; 12pm-4am Sun
Happy Hour: NO
Music: Juke Box
Subway: #1/2/3 to 14th St. (S end of platform)
Walk: 1 blk W. on 13th St. to 8th Ave.; 1 blk S. on 8th Ave. to Jane St.
Update:
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“Pub” is used in it’s broadest sense – bars, bar/restaurants, jazz clubs, wine bars, tapas bars, craft beer bars, dive bars, cocktail lounges, and of course, pubs – just about anyplace you can get a drink without a cover charge (except for certain jazz clubs).

If you have a fave premier pub or good eating place on Manhattan’s WestSide let us all know about it – leave a comment.

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Bonus Live Music  – NYC Jazz Clubs:
Many consider NYCity the Jazz capital of the world. My favorite Jazz Clubs, all on Manhattan’s WestSide, feature top talent every night of the week.
Hit the Hot Link and check out who is playing tonight:

Greenwich Village:
(4 are underground, classic jazz joints. all 6 are within walking distance of each other):
Village Vanguard – UG, 178 7th Ave. So., villagevanguard.com, 212-255-4037 (1st 8:30)
Blue Note – 131 W3rd St. nr 6th ave. bluenotejazz.com, 212-475-8592 (1st set 8pm)
55 Bar – basement @55 Christopher St. nr 7th ave.S. 55bar.com, 212-929-9883 (1st 7pm)
Mezzrow – basement @ 163 W10th St. nr 7th Ave. mezzrow.com,646-476-4346 (1st 8)
Smalls – basement @ 183 W10th St. smallslive.com, 646-476-4346 (1st set 7:30pm)
The Stone at The New School – 55 w13 St. (btw 6/5 ave) – thestonenyc.com (8:30PM)

Outside Greenwich Village:
Dizzy’s Club – Broadway @ 60th St. — jazz.org/dizzys / 212-258-9595 (1st set 7:30pm)
Birdland – 315 W44th St.(btw 8/9ave) — birdlandjazz.com / 212-581-3080 (1st 8:30pm)
Smoke Jazz Club – 2751 Broadway nr.106th St. — smokejazz.com/ 212-864-6662 (7pm)
Jazz Standard – 116 E27 St. (btw Park/Lex) – jazzstandard.com – (1st set 7:30)

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. — caffevivaldi.com / 212-691-7538 (1st 7pm)
a classic, old jazz club in the Village, Caffe V often surprised with a wonderfully eclectic lineup. It was my favorite spot for an evening of listening enjoyment and discovery.
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.
Cornelia Street Cafe – UG, 29 Cornelia St. corneliastreetcafe.com, 212-989-9319
And more recently we have lost Cornelia Street Cafe. After 41 years, it too became another victim of an unreasonable rent increase.

I MEMORIALIZE THESE TWO WONDERFUL CLUBS AS A WARNING.
WE HAVE TO WORK HARDER TO SAVE THESE SPECIAL PLACES.

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NYCity Vacation Travel Guide Video (Expedia):

 

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