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I am terribly sorry to have neglected you for so long! There are a number of exciting events in the next few days I want to pass along.

I have always been an advocate of NYC tap water but tonight an advocate with much more credibility will be speaking about our H2O:

Scott Chesman PhD will speak about the construction of City Water Tunnel No. 3 and the Moshulu Tunnel, which brings Croton water into the new filtering plant being built under Van Cortland Park; he has worked on both.

The lecture will be held at the Community Center at St. Jeans Baptiste at 7pm.

On Wednesday The Lance Drummonds Experience will be exploding on S.O.B.’s stage in the E. Village. His compositions have been called soulful and ambitious; he certainly looks soulful to me…

Lance Drummonds

Lance Drummonds

Also on Wednesday you can be among the first to discover the new band The French Exit when they play at The Local 269. They’re already getting good buzz so get out to see them while you can still get close enough to introduce yourself!

Wednesday is also a big night for the Mixer Reading and Music Series; the line-up includes Chuck Klosterman, the New York Times bestselling author of ‘Sex, Drugs, and Cocoa Puffs.’  He will be reading alongside Rivka Galchen and Nick Flynn; the musical talent will be Datus. I love the combination of book readings and musical performances, especially in the context of a great little venue like Cakeshop– you can have your fiction and your vegan cupcake too!

On Thursday Discovery is playing at Public Assembly. I’ve mentioned them to you before; K and I fell in love with the singer New Year’s Eve at the Cameo Art Gallery. She’s quite the fireball so it’s sure to be a high energy show!

Also on Thursday the Raspberry Brothers are having a special early show; they’ll be blasting Garden State out of the water at 10pm at the Clearview Chelsea Cinemas!

gardenstate

If you enjoyed the Media That Matters Film Festival, which I directed your attention to earlier this week, you should check out one of the films showing in the Human Rights Watch International Film Festival at the Walter Reade Theater. The festival, now in its 20th year, is presented by the Lincoln Center Film Society. Check out this trailer of one of the films, ‘Good Fortune,’ which explores how international efforts to alleviate poverty in Africa can sometimes cause the opposite effect:

I’ll be back with all sorts of fun for this weekend!

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The next week leading up to the LSAT is going to be a bit hectic (read: traumatic) for me so I’m going to unload a whole bunch of upcoming events on you- brace for impact!

First, some additions for this weekend. Tonight is the first night of the Raspberry Brothers’ new show at Clearview Chelsea Cinemas! This month they will be making fun of the original Terminator! I have actually seen their Terminator routine at Union Hall and I can guarantee that you will have an excellent time!

terminators-having-sex

On Saturday the NYC Lab School presents TASTES: from the meatpacking district to chelsea. TASTES is…

an exciting new culinary festival that will benefit arts and enrichment programs for public school children at the NYC Lab School on 333 West 17th Street. Patrons will sample a broad array of specialty dishes from fine restaurants in The Meatpacking District and Chelsea.

Also on Saturday head to Union Square to experience the Silent Rave! The idea is that everyone gathers at a given place and time (the south end of Union Sq. at 6:30pm) and begins simultaneously dancing to whatever music is playing on their individual iPods/MP3 players. It’s something you have to experience to understand but believe me, it’s amazing! Check out this picture from a Silent Rave I attended last summer:

silent rave union sq 2008

An exhibit worth swooning over will be opening at the Open House Gallery this weekend; to celebrate 60 years of damsels in distress Harlequin is putting on a show of their cover art. Here is a prime example:

harlequin

Starting this weekend and continuing every weekend through Labor Day you can party all day on top of the Gansevoort Hotel. The Get Up Get Down party will involve brunch by the pool, lounging around, and dancing once the sun goes down; you may not be in St. Tropez but you will feel almost as chic.

rooftop

On Monday at the Michael Schimmel Center for the Arts, Félix Lajkó will perform with violist Antal Brasnyo as part of the River to River Festival:

Hungarian violinist Félix Lajkó fuses folk, jazz, Gypsy, and Jewish klezmer music to create a unique and energetic musical style. Known for his charismatic performances, Lajkó has collaborated with everyone from Japanese Butoh dancer Min Tanaka to the French rock band Noir Désir. Here he will perform with violist Antal Brasnyo as part of Extremely Hungary, a yearlong festival celebrating Hungarian arts and culture in New York and D.C. (extremelyhungary.org).

Monday is also the start of Sake Week! More than 100 restaurants will be offering menu pairings, cocktails and other “sakecentric” events.

Wednesday is the premier of the Ninth Annual Media That Matters Film Festival:

The Media That Matters Film Festival, one of the world’s first and largest online film festivals, kicks off its ninth year with an offline world premiere tonight. This year’s festival showcases twelve jury-selected shorts tackling a broad range of social issues, including climate change, urban planning, and immigration, with humor, humanity, and honesty.

On Thursday, in celebration of Internet Week, Thrillist is hosting a crazy bash at M2 Ultra Lounge. There will be free booze, trapeze artists, a dj battle and visuals by ValuJet Visuals (aka my talented friend W).

Thursday is also opening night for two great shows. First, the Gallery Players present The 12th Annual Black Box New Play Festival, which begins with ‘Father Mike,’ “a nostalgic comedy that takes place in 1955 in the home of a proud Catholic family.”

poster

Also on Thursday the Hudson Warehouse starts their summer season with Shakespeare’s The Tempest.

On Friday you can finish off Internet Week properly at the Webutante Ball! This classy coming out event is happening on the roof of the Empire Hotel; there will be free vodka cocktails from 6-7 and a ceremonial crowning of a Webutante King and Queen!

webutante ball flier

Next Friday and Saturday you can see the results of the New York 48 Hour Film Project:

The 48 Hour Film Project’s mission is to advance filmmaking and promote filmmakers. Through its festival/competition, the Project encourages filmmakers and would-be filmmakers to get out there and make movies. The tight deadline of 48 hours puts the focus squarely on the filmmakers—emphasizing creativity and teamwork skills. While the time limit places an unusual restriction on the filmmakers, it is also liberating by putting an emphasis on “doing” instead of “talking.”

Click here to see some of the films from previous years and from other locations around the world!

Next Saturday Gemini and Scorpio will be screening Serenity on a private rooftop:

A rooftop screening of Joss Whedon’s (Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Angel, Dollhouse) space-western “Serenity,” to benefit Equality Now, an international women’s rights advocacy group and Whedon’s favorite charity. Also featuring “Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog,” Whedon’s musical-romp internet series created during the WGA writer’s strike. The screening is a prelude to a bigger CSTS shindig on June 28 hosted by The Browncoats of NYC, and to a series of semi-private rooftop “Firefly” screenings starting June 11, info on which will be available via the G&S mailing list. Look for The Browncoats at the event offering June 28 CSTS tickets and merch.

On Sunday my favorite fitness guru will be performing along with her dance company- Skin, at Symphony Space. Tina Thompson is a force of nature, as you may recall from my past ravings, and you won’t want to miss this performance!

skin dance

Finally, next weekend is also the start of two exciting theater festivals! The first is the Antidepressant Festival at the Brick Theater:

This summer’s fiesta is meant as a diversion at a time of plummeting stocks and rising unemployment. Nineteen productions are planned, including “Exit, Pursued by Bears,” about the fictional vice president of a Chicago sanitation union who leads a double life as Tickle Bear, the center of an anonymous online furry sex community; and “Schaden, Freude and You: A 3 Clown Seminar,” which provides the audience with a chance to laugh at others as a means of fighting depression. In this case the “others” are clowns, so they’re used to it. For more extroverted types, the Brick is including “Suspicious Package: Rx,” a sequel to last year’s “Suspicious Package,” an interactive theater piece that put audience members, each wearing a Zune media player, into the middle of a film-noir-type mystery. This year a trip to the future is in store.

The second is the Muslim Voices Festival, which will involve events at various locations:

The Asia Society, the Brooklyn Academy of Music and the New York University Center for Dialogues will present a festival and conference that explore and celebrate the arts of the Muslim world. Offerings encompass visual arts, crafts, documentary film, standup comedy and theater, including “Richard III: An Arab Tragedy,” a contemporary interpretation of Shakespeare’s play that examines the Arab world’s relationship with the West, from Sulayman Al-Bassam, a Kuwaiti director. The production, commissioned by the Royal Shakespeare Company, will be presented at the BAM Harvey Theater.

Enjoy and stay tuned; I will try to post additional events as my schedule allows! Oh, and wish me luck!

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“Summertime… and the livin’ is easy;” I can hear Billie Holiday crooning in my ear as I type those words. It is going to be a GREAT weekend everyone! I will be in Boston with G and his fellow BC Law grads but you have a delectable spread to choose from.

Tonight, at Public Assembly, enjoy burlesque and sideshow to the backbeat of live rock n roll!

Public Assembly flier

Tonight you can party for a cause at the Bed Stuy Food Not Bombs Benefit:

turnip the bass

Tonight is also opening night for a lovely new French film showing at BAM- Summer Hours (L’heure d’été), directed by Olivier Assayas and starring Juliette Binoche and Charles Berling, amongst others. You know I’m a huge francophile so I’m biased, but you can watch the trailer and decided for yourselves:

Also tonight, you can check out a very interesting musical experience at Joe’s Pub- Futurity, a Musical by the Lisps:

Futurity is an original indie-rock musical by Brooklyn-band The Lisps. A theatrically staged song cycle, Futurity tells the story of a Union soldier in the Civil War who is an aspiring science fiction writer. The work fuses traditional Americana, found text, experimental music, and The Lisps’ own brand of quirky co-ed pop.

This weekend is the last weekend you can see the Raspberry Brothers make fun of Snakes on a Plane at Clearview Chelsea Cinemas; when you need some AC and a nice reclining seat, not to mention a good laugh, check them out.

snakes

Saturday night go to your first great dance party of the summer- the Down and Derby at Studio B.

derby

If soul is more your thing boogie down at the Five Spot Soul Food Supper Club:

soul

If it’s a concert you want I highly recommend checking out Emanuel and the Fear at Mercury Lounge. You may remember my stellar review of their show at Crash Mansion. They were also mentioned by L Magazine as one of the 8 NYC Bands You Need to Hear. Don’t miss them!

On Saturday and Sunday you can challenge yourself as never before at the great Crawfish Boil for NOLA 2009! A ticket entitles you to:

4 crawfish pours (4-5lbs of crawfish per person) along with corn on the cob, potatoes, mushrooms, onions, garlic, sausage and spices served with unlimited beer and New Orleans Hurricanes!

Sounds like a challenge to me!

This weekend is also the New York Airshow at Jones’ Beach! Performers include the USAF Thunderbirds, the Warbirds Over Long Island and the Canadian Forces Snowbirds! Bring your sunscreen and enjoy the spectacle!

New York Airshow 2008

New York Airshow 2008

Sunday is the first Sunday Best event at the Brooklyn Yard:

Tacos, sangria, little kids running around, trees, water, and good, good music. Residents Doug Singer, Justin Carter, and Eamon Harkin are playing alongside soulful house maestro Quentin Harris all afternoon and evening.

Sunday night there’s another great show at Mercury Lounge (I hate them but they have the best shows!)- Brit Boras and the Cavalry! I told you how much I enjoyed their show at Spike Hill; now it’s your turn to be impressed.

And if you’re looking for a traditional BBQ (of sorts), I recommend Flatbush Farm for all your Memorial Day needs:

As Obama Nation observes Memorial Day, the Farm will offer a traditional American-style BBQ on our outdoor patio: grilled barn burgers, pulled pork sandwiches, cole slaw, shiskebabs, grilled hot dogs, chips and potato salad. Drink pourer Jason Roberts will serve up the new and refreshing BUMBLE TEA—Earl Grey infused vodka-based sweet tea!

Have an amazing weekend! See you next week!

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I have a very busy weekend planned and I’m not even going to half of the events I’d like to go to.

Tonight I will be missing the Brit Boras concert at Pianos I told you about but I urge you to do what I say and not what I do (haha) and dance the night away! I have it on good authority that the cellist is adorable and the music’s good too.

Also tonight, Look Presents Detour: NY’s Premier Film Noir and Arts Festival. Go out to Galapagos for independent film noir, steamy burlesque and all sorts of other “unexpected adventures.”

Ongoing throughout the weekend is the Migrating Forms Film Festival at Anthology Film Archives:

Migrating Forms is the organization that grew out of the New York Underground Film Festival (1993–2008), presenting five days of new experimental film and video.

Here’s the trailer for this year:

On Friday Clay Space 1205 hosts an opening party for their new 11-artist group show from 6-9pm. Ask about their spring classes and ceramic workshops- pottery classes aren’t just for bored housewives afterall!

Clay Space 1205

Clay Space 1205

Friday is also opening night for the Raspberry Brothers at Chelsea Clearview Cinemas! I know I’ve told you about them in the past and now you’ll be able to see them every Friday and Saturday night at midnight! This month their victim is ‘Dirty Dancing’ and you can find me in the audience this Saturday night giggling whilst trying to eat popcorn.

dirtydancing

On Friday night I will be rocking out to the tunes of Emanuel and the Fear at Crash Mansion. Here’s their promo video:

On Friday and Saturday you can hear Wynton Marsalis play at Lincoln Center:

Tap dancers Jared Grimes and Dewitt Fleming, Jr. join the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra with Wynton Marsalisin “Spaces,” a five-movement tap ballet by artistic director Wynton Marsalis along with the premiere of “Jesse B. Semple Suite,” based on stories by Langston Hughes set to music by JLCO trombonist Vincent Gardner. The “Jesse B. Semple Suite” will feature actors Anthony Thompson Adeagbo and Summer Hill Seven.

Saturday night check out the Cameo Art Gallery in Williamsburg, where Sigmund Droid will be turning up the funk factor with his dirty dance punk.

Sigmund Droid at Cameo Art Space

Sigmund Droid at Cameo Art Gallery

Also on Saturday night there’s an awesome lineup at the Bowery Poetry Club– Paul Muldoon, the Pulitzer Prize winning poetry editor of the New Yorker, is the featured reader and Racket provides the tunes. The late show is !BadAss! Burlesque with Velocity Chyaldd.

!BadAss! Burlesque

!BadAss! Burlesque

Ongoing this month, the ISSUE Project Room is presenting all sorts of experimental madness at Old American Can Factory near the Gowanus Canal, before making their big move to their new digs at 110 Livingston Street in Downtown Brooklyn. Read what Brooklyn Based has to say about the artists/musicians/performers involved.

P.S. Tickets for the Tribeca Film Festival go on sale to the general public on Monday!

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To add to the already impressive offerings for tonight, Flatbush Farm is having a Basque Cider Festival:

Flatbush Farm celebrates traditional Basque cider festivals in the Bar(n) with a night serving our Sarasola cider and traditional Basque foods prepared by Chef Stephen Browning. Traditional Basque cider festival dishes will include salt-cod omelettes, Basque peppers, grilled steak, spiced walnuts, and Idiazábal, a smoked unpasteurized sheeps milk cheese aged eight months.

Tomorrow night, if the weather cooperates, the Inwood Astronomy Project will be hosting The Inwood Star Fest:

Astronomy

I recently mentioned the New Directors/New Films Series and I’d like to draw your attention to a specific film that has the extra distinction of having one of the Raspberry Brothers among its cast- ‘Harmony and Me.’ Here’s the trailer:

You can check it out on Friday at MOMA or Sunday at Lincoln Center.

The talented Swiss circus troupe, La Famiglia Dimitri, will be performing at The New Victory Theater until April 19th; check out their stunning high wire acts this weekend!

Famiglia Dimitri

Famiglia Dimitri

The Conspiracy of Beards- Leonard Cohen Choir, also has several performances this weekend, including one at the Bowery Poetry Club on Sunday:

San Francisco’s Conspiracy of Beards is men’s choir from that performs gritty, original arrangements of the songs of Leonard Cohen. This a capella group has had a string of acclaimed performances at Bay Area venues, including the Cafe du Nord, the Great American Music Hall, and The San Francisco Museum of Modern Art. The choir has also been featured on National Public Radio’s “West Coast Live,” on KFOG-FM, and on PBS television station KQED-TV. Transforming Cohen’s simple melodies into complex 4- and 5-part harmonies, the group achieves a sound that is both robust and tender. One can hear influences of indie rock, jazz, gospel, barbershop, classical and even doo-wop in the unique arrangements the choir selects. Using the genius of Cohen’s words, the Beards inspire their audience members to ponder romance, politics, sex, longing and spirituality, all amid laughter and cheers.

Also on Sunday you can get your knives professionally sharpened at the Broadway Panhandler– the profits go to City Harvest AND while you wait you can steal some snacks from chef Marcus Samuelsson as he demonstrates his new cookware line.

Sunday night check out The Spinto Band at The Bell House. I like several of the songs on their new album Moonwink, especially “Summer Grof”:

Stay tuned for additions and don’t forget First Saturday at the Brooklyn Museum and Langhorne Slim’s show at The Bell House, which I told you about in an earlier post.

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There are three very different and equally absurd and fantastic things happening tomorrow. First, if you like free food and you LOVE macaroni and cheese you simply must go to Greenpoint tomorrow for the great Mac Off:

Mac Off Flyer

Mac Off Flyer

If that’s not your thing, or if you’ve stuffed yourself to bursting by 6ish, head to the LES and check out the Raspberry Brothers at Pianos; they’ll be adding fantastic commentary to one of the more absurd movies of the 80s- Footloose.

Footloose Poster

Footloose Poster

If you’d rather watch an absurd movie without commentary, Quintet with Paul Newman is showing at BAM:

Robert Altman’s notoriously divisive science-fiction head-trip transports Newman to a glacial, post-apocalyptic future where humans are engaged in a deadly game called Quintet, the only objective of which is to stay alive. Bleak and hypnotic, Quintet is Altman at his most elusive, exploring the very limits of narrative and psychosocial boundaries.

That’s about as absurd as it gets…

Will post this week’s events shortly- promise!

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This was possibly one of the most awesome weekends ever. On Friday night I went out to Monkey Town for ‘Forest Dinner,’ which was truly incredible. The meal was accompanied by some of the organizer’s favorite videos of all time. Here’s the breakdown:

Forest Dinner Prix Fixe Menu

  • Fennel braised rabbit
  • honey & ancho grilled quail
  • venison ravioli
  • espresso rubbed elk loin
  • grilled wild boar chop [I skipped this one]
  • black forest cake

Forest Dinner Music Video Program

  • Dan Deacon- Drinking Out of Cups
  • Cool Kids- Black Mags
  • Bat For Lashes- What’s a Girl to Do
  • Kanye West- Flashing Lights
  • Lasse Gjertsen- A Self-Portrait
  • Mr. Rogers- Lifetime Achievement Acceptance
  • Justice- Stress
  • MGMT- Time to Pretend
  • Kelis- Bossy
  • Thunderheist- Jerk It
  • Warrior Queen- Almighty Father
  • Lasse Gjertsen- Amateur
  • Daft Punk- Da Funk
  • Wu Tang Clan- Triumph
  • Aphex Twin- Rubber Johnny
  • Vitalic- Poney Part I
  • Tame Impala- Half Full Glass of Wine
  • UNKLE- Rabbit In Your Headlights
  • Sonic Youth- Death Valley 69
  • Madvillian- All Caps
  • My Bloody Valentine- To Here Knows When
  • Prodigy- Smack My Bitch Up
  • Yeah Yeah Yeahs- Y Control
  • Fleet Foxes- He Doesn’t Know Why
  • Liam Lynch- The Museum Rap

I really like the set-up they have in their backroom. I attended a screening of Honey Bunny V2 there during Porn Week; check out this picture:

HoneyBunnyV2

HoneyBunnyV2

Having the screens surrounding you gives the room a sort of virtual-reality atmosphere and the low couches along the walls make for excellent people-watching. Their food is usually very good but the cocktails are kind of hit-or-miss. I had one on Friday that tasted sort of like onion-infused vinegar. I think when bartenders decide to add things like onions to drinks they need to really test them out before adding them to a menu.
I followed that up with drinks at the Huckleberry Bar. I have to say I really prefer Huckleberry on weeknights; Friday night it was so packed and noisy that you couldn’t really enjoy their fantastic cocktails. I particularly like the Article 57. It’s a grown-up version of hard lemonade; rather than just citrus the drink is also infused with ginger. The waitress took forever but then gave us free drinks, which was very sweet of her and definitely made up for the wait. The DJ was totally intolerable but then I guess I’m just not a fan of going deaf from the music. It’s not really a place where people dance so I feel as though that level of volume is uncalled for.
Saturday afternoon I took my first flying trapeze lesson at the New York Trapeze School. It was definitely one of my more thrilling experiences to date and I would recommend it to anyone who does not have a crippling fear of heights. The staff were really friendly and encouraging and even in your first lesson you get the thrill of hanging by your knees, doing a back-flip-release and attempting a catch (I failed; I’m just not that athletic). This is a picture of the tent:
New York City Trapeze School

New York City Trapeze School

Saturday night I saw ‘The Cherry Orchard’ at BAM:
The Cherry Orchard at BAM

The Cherry Orchard at BAM

Ethan Hawke was pretty amazing. You could also really see Tom Stoppard’s hand in the whole thing; his style is very recognizable. I saw a production of his play ‘Rock and Roll’ in Boston and though this was obviously a Chekhov play you could see the similarities between the two. Chekhov is pretty depressing but then again, it seems to me that Russian literature is almost always depressing. Perhaps it’s all the cold.

It has been far too cold in NYC lately. I mean when I step out of the subway and the wind almost knocks me over it takes away from my general enjoyment of going out. I feel as though I haven’t had an outfit that was right for the occasion and the weather for months. I’m tired of wearing boots for goodness sakes. How long must this go on? In a city where you walk all over the place winter is just so much more stressful than in places where you hop in and out of cars. I recently took a cab for 10 blocks. I felt ashamed afterwards but I mean really, I was wearing stockings for crying out loud. Stockings!
I had a late dinner after the show at Bacchus, which is a really great French Bistro in that area. It’s tiny and not too fancy but the food is consistently good and the waitresses are friendly and French (not a likely combo). I’ll admit to being a huge francophile. French accents make me want to be scorned and condescended to. After Bacchus I was out with friends at Union Hall until they closed for the night, which was earlier than it should have been. Union Hall feels like the Park Slope version of the Cheers bar. Of course everyone doesn’t actually know your name, but you do feel comforted the moment you get in the door. How could you not feel comforted by fireplaces and leather couches and hipsters playing boccie ball? They also have some fun events, including the Raspberry Brothers, who I saw do commentary on The Terminator and found hysterical.
I slept too late Sunday to go to the Chinatown New Years Parade, which was a bummer because I really enjoyed it last year. I did however head into the city in the late afternoon for dim sum at Red Egg. I’m not a big fan of Chinese food; I don’t eat pork and I don’t like soy sauce so a lot of it doesn’t work for me. The textures are also somewhat problematic. I have textural food issues. I can’t eat mushy things. There are few exceptions to this and it includes many things that other people appear to like (ie yogurt). I like to chew my food. The experience of dim sum is fun though and since I was with friends who are crazy about dim sum I was able to enjoy the vicarious excitement as well.

Past Shenanigans

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