Tag Archives: BAM

A Film Student Comes to Town

First of all please pardon me for a second while I sing my own praises… Gemini & Scorpio, the lovely event entrepreneurs who I have been working for these last few months (to the detriment of this blog I am afraid), have been featured in an article in the New York Times. My name is actually included! My grandmother is less excited about this than you might expect but I for one am pretty thrilled.

Setup for G&S Party; image from the NYTimes

Setup for G&S Party, image from the NYTimes

Ok, moving on… I have a friend coming to town this weekend who went to film school at NYU and is taking some sort of test to try to get into a film apprenticeship program in the city. As per usual when I have a visitor I have drafted a list of all sorts of wonderful events taking place and I thought I would share them with you!

Friday night the Mad Breaks Tea Party is sure to be a riotous good time, of the G&S/underground/alt-events variety. There will be aerialists, a tea garden (of course), sculptural installations, fire spinners, a hookah lounge and all sorts of other madness.

On Saturday at Galapagos Art Space, Floating Kabarette takes burlesque to the air in a gravity defying weekly show only to be found in the Big Apple.

Also on Saturday, for a much more G-rated (and more film centered) evening, you can head to 92Y Tribeca for a sing-along with Fieval and friends! An American Tail is one of those Spielberg movies that you associate much more with childhood than with Spielberg. If you remember the songs get ready to belt them with other fans! Here’s a clip to refresh your memory:

On Sunday, another film related event, my favorite comedians are making fun of one of the most ridiculous things to hit the cinema in recent years- Twilight! Head to the Knitting Factory to see the Raspberry Brothers make a comedy out of this mess.

Since this is a film-centric weekend I also advised my visiting friend to check out the offerings at

I advise you to do the same, anytime you want to check out new foreign/independent film or see classics on the big screen! Enjoy!

Follow me and Miss Scorpio on Twitter for the latest event listings and be sure to sign up for the G&S weekly event list- everything you need to know about alt-events in NYC!

Let there be light; D.W. sings and other events

Tonight you can experience the High Line in a whole new light (heh heh); LightmappingNYC is presenting a tour and discussion of the “challenges and innovations developed for the lighting of this 1.2 mile elevated train track.”

This week there are two exciting programs at BAM. The first is a presentation of new French films; as a francophile I am naturally quite excited! The second program is a very interesting circus act straight from Sweden:

The human body unfolds as a surreal rock and roll fantasy in Inside Out, Swedish troupe Cirkus Cirkör’s phantasmagoric journey into the outer reaches of inner life. Accompanied onstage by dub-punk-new wave-electro-inspired band Irya’s Playground and featuring an outlandish mix of highly skilled acrobatics, musical theater, and spectacle, Inside Out boggles the mind by way of the body. Actors and acrobats course through veins, explode through space like uncoiled strands of DNA, and lunge across synapses to become the body electric. Breathtaking, poetic, and humorous, never before has there been such a fantastic, gravity-defying voyage.

On Thursday The New School is hosting a celebration of esteemed poet Marie Ponsot and her new collection of poems, titled ‘Easy’. Participants include Rosemary Deen, Jean Gallagher, Deborah Garrison, Richard Howard, Phillip Lopate, Alice Quinn, Sapphire, L.B. Thompson, and Jackson Taylor.

On Sunday the voice of one of the Wild Things (K.W.) will be exercising her lovely vocal chords at Joe’s Pub. Lauren Ambrose, whose performance in Exit the King I enjoyed almost as much as her performance as K.W., is also an accomplished singer. She is also much more attractive than her “wild” counterpart:

Lauren Ambrose

Lauren Ambrose

There are a number of great exhibits, some big some delectably small, worth checking out so stay tuned for an all-art post coming up shortly! I’ll also be bringing you more weekend events and fun things to look forward to next week! Be sure to follow me on twitter for last minute updates and other news from The Big Red Apple!

Tosca- It’s a whole new Met

G and I saw the Metropolitan Opera‘s new production of Tosca a couple of weeks ago. I had read a few of the articles about the boo-ing on opening night so I was prepared for all sorts of atrocities. I have to say I was pleasantly surprised. Yes, the sets are dull and a bit dreary in comparison to the glitz of the old production (by Franco Zeffirelli), but in some sense their very drabness refocuses the audience on the music. Certainly opera has historically been about pomp and pageantry but it’s a brave new world and if we’re looking at opera in a new way that may not be such a bad thing.

Franco Zeffirelli Production of Tosca

Franco Zeffirelli's Production of Tosca

Richard Peduzzi's Production of Tosca

Richard Peduzzi's Production of Tosca

I had a long conversation with some older women during intermission about the pros and cons of various new productions presented in recent years. While one of them vehemently hated the new sets for Tosca she assured me that she was not against the updating of opera in principle. In fact she thought the production of Madama Butterfly performed last year was one of the most beautiful she had ever seen.

In trying to modernize the Metropolitan Opera Peter Gelb is paying less attention to its older audience in an attempt to bring in a younger one. What attracts young people? As a young person myself I feel ill-equipped to answer for my demographic. G and I loved the new production but both agreed that we would have loved the old one as well. What we found powerful and exciting was the experience of having the singers’ actual voices, un-amplified, surrounding us even from the cheap seats. It will never cease to amaze me that a human being can create such a sound. I tend to feel that seeing opera in HD is less magical because of the lack of contact with those sound waves but if you’re interested in experimenting with opera before taking the leap watch the new production of Tosca on the big screen this weekend at BAM. Let me know what you think.

Falling in Love with Dance

As a somewhat clumsy individual with very little sense of rhythm I am totally in awe of dancers; the grace and expressiveness of their movements never cease to dazzle me.

In-I at BAM was especially interesting as Juliette Binoche is not a professional dancer and described this piece as ‘acting through movement.’ She and Akram Khan created a new sort of dance together; it is brilliantly evocative. What I liked most about the style was that while it was much less acrobatic than most dance it seemed to be more physical; the interaction between the two bodies seemed more emotionally charged than the more technical movements I’m used to seeing (especially in ballet). The weakest portions of the piece were the spoken narratives; they lacked the emotion and drama of the movement. Juliette Binoche has said that she does not intend to dance again but if she does be sure to snag those tickets early!

Juliette Binoche and Akram Khan in In-I at BAM

Juliette Binoche and Akram Khan in In-I at BAM

I also attended two of the Fall for Dance performances at City Center (remember when I waited in line all morning for tickets? It was worth it!). Each of the programs consisted of four pieces, each performed by a different dance company. I will just tell you a bit about my favorites.

Les Biches, a rarely seen work from the Ballets Russes, was an adorable depiction of the 1920s flapper scene. I particularly loved seeing the ballerinas hiding behind a big blue couch to spy on the men. This ballet was considered very provocative when it was first performed and while it’s hardly scandalous the mood it evokes is no less enjoyable.

Snow, choreographed and performed by Sang Jijia, was hypnotic and intensely beautiful. The “snow” drifting down on the stage made the scene ethereal and Jijia’s repetitive movements pulled the viewer into a trance. I couldn’t tell you how long the piece went on, only that afterwards I felt lonely and expectant. The program reads

When snow begins to fall,

The world is silent

And the mind begins to speak aloud…

I believe that is a perfect description of the piece.

Diana Vishneva’s performance of The Dying Swan was truly exquisite. The piece was originally danced by Anna Pavlova and I felt as though her elegance was inhabiting the stage. Vishneva is a prima ballerina at the Mariinsky Theater in St. Petersburg, so we can only hope her company visits The Big Apple again soon!

Diana Vishneva as The Dying Swan

Diana Vishneva as The Dying Swan

Many of the companies who participate in Fall for Dance perform here throughout the year; I will certainly be alerting you to exciting events but keep your eyes open for news of those dancers in particular and be sure to let me know if you find something before I do!

Sept. 17-20 Additions and RECAP

First, I’d like to recap the last couple of posts (scroll down or click HERE and HERE to read them in full). There’s some questionable theater ongoing in The Big Apple: Juliette Binoche is trying her hand at dancing; one man is playing 3 Irish Widows (plus 20-some other characters); Daniel Craig thinks he’s a real actor now; Philip Seymour Hoffman IS a real actor; Medea has a whole new look; and you can now take a poetic bus tour of the Bronx. Plus next week is the start of Fall For Dance and there are still a few tickets left! Also upcoming: Williamsburg Fashion Weekend is THIS weekend (Sept. 18 + 19); Le Fooding D’Amour will bring real French cuisine to the city NEXT weekend (Sept. 25 + 26); and The DUMBO Art Under the Bridge Festival will be dressing up DUMBO NEXT weekend (Sept. 25-27). Plus there’s still time to “see” a concert while in a MAZE AND discover wtf psychogeography means. There’s also still time to drink awesome beer AND rock out with gypsies! ALSO be sure to check out one of the comedy shows that are part of the Eugene Mirman Comedy Festival happening THIS weekend (Sept. 17-20). Feeling overwhelmed yet? Good, now it’s time for ADDITIONS!

Tonight (Sept. 17) is the 2nd Annual Park Slope Restaurant Tour! Last year’s tour was my first date with G so this marks our 1 year anniversary. Head out to 7th Ave. with someone who might be special and see if stellar samples can be good luck for you too!

Starting tonight and running through Oct. 3 M.E.A.N.Y. Fest (Musicians & Emerging Artists New York) will be showcasing up and coming bands at various venues throughout the city. G and I will be seeing Black Taxi play next Saturday (Sept. 26) and we’d love to see you there!

Tonight is the opening reception for the Recession Art Sale. The exhibition itself will open Monday and run through next Sunday (Sept. 21-27). Here’s a piece by Thaddeus Radell, an artist whose work will be on sale:

Thaddeus Radell

Thaddeus Radell

Tomorrow night (Sept. 18) you can sample an array of Indian street food all in one place, the Indian Culinary Center:

Your hands and feet won’t be the only things pretty enough to eat at the Indian Culinary Center‘s (131 West 23rd Street) evening of Henna and Street Foods of India this Friday from 6-10 p.m. In addition to body art applied by an onsite specialist, the evening will feature such savory bites as Bhel Puri (spicy snack mix), Aloo Tikki (potato croquettes), and Kati Rolls (Indian wraps).

On Saturday (Sept. 19) find someone willing to give up their spot on a team and you could be part of a Craft Beer Scavenger Hunt run by the lovely folks of Metro Metro!

As part of NY Craft Beer Week, we are having a daylong, multi-borough discovery of beer, bars, and neighborhoods. Teams of four will pore over the city in the pursuit of delicious knowledge while embracing the healthy spirit of competition. To cap the day off, hunters will enjoy a private afterparty hosted at the Brooklyn Brewery in Williamsburg.

If you missed out on the last pig roast I mentioned you have another chance to see a whole pig being roasted this Sunday (Sept. 20) at Il Buco!

The sixth annual Sagra del Maiale, an outdoor pig and apple festival commemorating the Autumnal Equinox, will take place outside il Buco between 1-8 p.m. The guest of honor will be a 200-pound heritage breed Crossabaw Pig, slow roasted in an “infiernillo” (“little hell”) by Chef Ignacio Mattos.

Il Buco Pig Roast 2007

Il Buco Pig Roast 2007

If you can’t make it out to taste what Park Slope has to offer then you may want to sample the West Village Sunday (Sept. 20); Taste the West Village lets you try a number of top shelf restaurants for a small fee (from $10 depending on the number of tastes).

Finally, get your tickets now to The Big Lebowski Festival, happening next week (Sept. 22-24) in The Big Apple!


That’s all for now! Be sure to follow me on Twitter for the latest updates and once again, shan’a tova for those of you celebrating Rosh Hashanah this weekend!