Tag Archives: Madama Butterfly

Labor Day etc.

Tomorrow is Labor Day in The Big Apple and since you won’t be laboring you should check out some of the awesome events that will be taking place in this fine town!

On Eastern Parkway The West Indian Day Parade will be one great big party! The parade will be followed by dance and musical performances at The Brooklyn Museum!

West Indian Day Parade 2008 (in front of the Brooklyn Museum)

West Indian Day Parade 2008 (in front of the Brooklyn Museum)

If you feel up to some cooking whip up something local and bring it to The Bell House for their ‘Lunchin’ Local on Labor Day Potluck.’ Your dish gives you free access to the festivities, which include “4-square, hopscotch, hula hoops and more!”

As the day draws to a close head uptown to Lincoln Center Plaza for the last free opera of the season! The Metropolitan Opera’s outstanding performance of Madama Butterfly will be broadcast in HD; get there early to snag a seat and enjoy the show!

Also, in case you missed my last post, let me reiterate…

On Monday skip the amateur BBQs and get BBQ done right at Marfa in the E. Village:

From 5pm onwards, East Village rib joint Marfa is hosting the West Texas All You Can Eat Labor Day Barbecue on their roof deck. For $15, fill your plate with BBQ ribs, pork, beef, salmon and all the fixins. And for an extra $2, you can add some wild boar or shrimp to that plate. Drinks include $5 Margaritas, $3 PBR and shots of the house-infused tequila.

If you’re a fan of Manolos and Cosmo’s get your tickets now to the “lecture” of the season: Sex and the City and Best Friends Forever: Candace Bushnell and Jennifer Weiner, at Kaufmann Concert Hall this Tuesday!

On Wednesday join me at Comix to pay tribute to John Hughes in the best possible way- by watching the Raspberry Brothers make fun of The Breakfast Club! Tickets are only $5 if you buy them online in advance using the promo code RASP. It’s going to be hilarious and rumors say that a sing-a-long will also be part of the evening… Here’s the trailer to whet your appetite:

Enjoy the start of a new season and stay tuned for additions! Also don’t forget- for the latest updates follow The Big Red Apple on twitter!

August 12-17 Get it while it’s HOT!

Can you believe it’s already the middle of August? If you haven’t been to your fair share of awesome summer events it’s time to get out of your apartment and get ’em while it’s HOT!

Tomorrow I will be on a plane on my way to Banff, but you will have to make the difficult choice between 2 great film screenings, an absurd musical event and a free opera performance!

Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind will be playing on the ball fields of McCarren Park. This is a very hipster film so this screening in the heart of Hipsterville is a prime opportunity to view it in its… hmm… natural habitat?

The other movie screening worth considering is The Sex and the City Movie showing on Pier 54. If you’re just as in love with your new Prada sandals as you are with your new summer fling this is the event for you! Here’s the trailer (in case you’ve finally gotten the theme out of your head and need a refresher):

If you want some live melodrama (instead of onscreen) head up to Central Park where the New York Grand Opera will be performing a semi-staged production of Madama Butterfly in the Naumburg Bandshell (@ 72nd St.).

If you want to see a story whose ending is yet to be determined witness history in the making at the first Music Video Film Festival and Band Battle at Public Assembly!

Music video film festival and band battle

On Thursday head to Brooklyn Bridge Park for another fabulous film screening, in this case Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid. Don’t forget to bring a picnic and get there early for a good spot!

Also on Thursday there will be a truly epic concert out at Coney IslandBlondie, Pat Benatar and The Donnas are playing the Seaside Summer Concert Series. Why see the imitators when you can see the originals, right?

This weekend some very (ahem) unique performers will be back in town- Puppetry of the Penis is live at the Bleecker Theater! This video doesn’t show you much but if it doesn’t terrify you this may just be the best show you’ll see all summer!

If that’s not your style, never fear, the monster of theater festivals is opening on Friday- the New York International Fringe Festival! Running through August 30th…

The New York International Fringe Festival (FringeNYC) is the largest multi-arts festival in North America, with more than 200 companies from all over the world performing for 16 days in more than 20 venues – that’s a total of more than 1300 performances! FringeNYC generates an atmosphere of extreme excitement, and our energy is contagious!

There will be something for EVERYONE.

Friday night the free lecture at the Columbia Astronomy Center is ‘Teaching Old Stars New Tricks;’ as always the star gazing at the observatory post-lecture is also free and open to the public!

This weekend at Galapagos Suspended Cirque is presenting their newest creation- Urbanopolis! This talented troupe of aerial performers will tell a fanciful tale of a young man’s urban journey; their performance will stretch over the walls and ceilings and bring the audience into the world they’ve created.


On Saturday if you haven’t made it out to P.S.1 for the Warm Up this summer then this week is the week to go! DJ Pierre, Phuture 303, House of Stank, and Growing will be heating up the courtyard; if you need to cool down check out Leandro Erlich’s Swimming Pool (j/k).

Leandro Erlich: Swimming Pool

Leandro Erlich: Swimming Pool

Last summer the Public Theater gave us bacchanalia in the form of naked hippies, this summer they’re taking it back to its roots with The Bacchae! Don’t wait until the end of the run to try to get tickets at the Delacorte; I tried to get tickets for the Twelfth Night at the end of the run and was too late at 6:30am!

Monday is your last chance to see a movie in Bryant Park this summer; Spielberg’s masterpiece Close Encounters of the Third Kind will screen at dusk. Here’s the trailer:

Next Tuesday for the singles among you there’s a free rooftop party at Tonic East in the village. The group running the event- Single and the City, aim to bring together the best of the best to help you find who you’re looking for- check it out, you never know, right?

I hope you all have a great week, follow me on Twitter to get the latest updates!

Feb. 15-18: Several Great Meals and a Modern Antigone

I have indulged in some truly decadent food these last few days. I have been meaning to detail my gastronomic adventures but have found myself too food coma-ed to do so. On Sunday night my friend D, who was in the midst of serious vacation splurging since she was only visiting from San Fran, reserved a table for us at Tailor. I couldn’t even find the place at first; the dark exterior didn’t even begin to suggest the chic restaurant within.



I had kept her waiting and she was already sipping at one of their exquisite cocktails- the Butternut & Fulernum, which is said to contain “Rum, Butternut Squash and Fulernum.” It is impossible to describe but I highly recommend it nonetheless. I tried the Rooi Moer, which was less exciting. We ordered the Beeted Tongue to start and it was truly fantastic. The presentation was impossibly colorful and intricate. The flavor was multifaceted; the nuts added an interesting texture. Best of all the horseradish sprinkled on top was an incredible little ping! to top it off. I had the Roasted Lamb and D had the Brisket for our respective entrees. The chef was really great about making alterations to cope with D’s intense lactardation (lactose intolerant like WOAH). All of the dishes were splendid though the starter and D’s dessert were the stars. For dessert D ordered the Grapefruit Tart and the chef did something magical to make it non-dairy and even without the blessing of butter it was superb. So, now that I’ve made you all hungry you’re ready to hear about Monday night.

Monday night my friend W was having his birthday dinner at Peter Luger’s Steakhouse. For those of you who are not aware Peter Luger’s is pretty much the epitome of an old school steakhouse. It’s been open since 1887 and they’ve pretty much been serving steak their way to any man big enough to tackle it since then. If W sends me some of his pics from that night I’ll post them but honestly even the thought of the sheer quantity of food still makes me a trifle queasy. I’ll be damned if I didn’t hold my own though. I mean I earned my place at the guy’s table when W took me to see amateur female jello wrestling and I thought it was awesome. I ate steak with the best of them but oh my did I feel sick Tuesday morning!

Luckily I was recovered sufficiently this evening to enjoy my dinner at Merchants New York Cafe in the Financial District. I was early and A was a bit late so I ended up chatting with the chef for quite some time. Coincidentally he had been to Tailor and so we were comparing notes on that and he was talking up his specials and the scallops he pushed me into were excellent. I preferred one of his regular dishes though- the heart-shaped ravioli were fantastic and I appreciated that he was flexible about the pancetta (I don’t eat pork). If you end up in that area I would definitely recommend this place, particularly because the chef is so involved. I generally feel that the more a chef is involved in the whole dining experience the more fluid it will be.

After dinner A and walked over a block to the 3LD Art and Technology Center for Fire Throws. The play used most of the original script, translated from the Greek, and then added music and dance together with some narrative monologues by “Antigone Who Is.” The performance was visually stunning, though the music was sometimes distracting. I disliked having some of the lines chanted or sung; it distracted from their meaning and didn’t increase the connectivity with the dance. The dancing, based in part on Balinese dance, was acrobatic and fluid and made excellent use of the space. The use of sashes reminded me of the Metropolitan Opera’s version of Madama Butterfly, in which long red sashes gather to become a dress and are unraveled in the final scene to represent blood. Actually the color palate in this production also emphasized red. I’m not sure that the costume designer had a specific meaning in mind (passion? blood? sin? impurity?) but it was certainly visually compelling.

Fire Throws

Fire Throws

The acting was a bit inconsistent. This scene, between Creon and his son Haemon, was notable mainly for the use of ‘Antigone Who Was”s shadow on a screen behind the players. This interesting image distracted me from the somewhat unimpressive acting onstage:

Antigone's shadow behind Creon and Haemon

Antigone's shadow behind Creon and Haemon

All the actors had their good and bad moments I think. ‘Antigone Who Was’ and Ismene were good in their scene together:

Antigone and Ismene

Antigone and Ismene

The trouble was that the director was more interested in making a statement about how the symbol of Antigone has been used over time than she was in telling the story of Antigone. I would respect her directorial choices more if I felt that her statement came across clearly. Unfortunately it seemed as though she couldn’t quite make up her mind what it should be; ‘Antigone Who Is’ is so preoccupied with wishing she could change the story that we never really see how the symbol of Antigone works within modern society. This is a beautiful production and truly lovely to watch but I can’t say that it expands the meaning of the play. I would suggest seeing it while it’s still in previews; if you do see it be sure to let me know what you think!

I will be posting weekend events shortly!