Who: Spotlight Guests Jewel Staite, John Rhys-Davies, Adam Hughes, Chris Claremont, Greg Capullo, Masashi Kishimoto, Scott Snyder, Todd McFarlane, and John Rhys-Davies, Featured Guests Allison Sohn, Amy Reeder, Charles Soule, Terry Dodson, and many, many more to be announced
What: New York Comic Con
Where: Javits Center, 655 W 34th St. at 12th Ave.
When: October 8-11, single day $40-$50, three-day pass $75, four-day pass $105, tickets go on sale Wednesday, May 13, at 12 noon
Why: New York Comic Con continues its exponential growth as it reaches its tenth anniversary, making it harder and harder to get tickets, so there’s no time to waste if you want to go to the annual celebration of pop culture, with particular focuses on gaming, science fiction and fantasy books and films, anime, and all things comic-book-related. The four days, part of New York Super Week, are chock full of panel discussions, sneak-peek screenings, photo and autograph opportunities, book signings, and tons and tons of costumed fans. It’s getting so that those who come dressed in regular clothes are the minority. Tickets will go very quickly, so get yours now; don’t wait around until the big-time celebrity attendees are announced, as there will be plenty of major stars there to promote their latest work and smile for the camera with you.
Who: Julia Fierro, Lisa Gornick, Stephanie Thompson, Sophia Romero, Sean Grover, Jennifer Michael Hecht, Louise Crawford
What: Tenth annual “Edgy Moms” literary gathering, presented by Brooklyn Reading Works
Where: The Old Stone House, 336 Third St. between Fourth & Fifth Aves. in Washington Park, Park Slope, 718-768-3195
When: Tuesday, May 12, $10 suggested donation, 8:00
Why: They’re not just moms — they’re moms on the edge. Well, actually, they’re Edgy Moms, and they’ll be celebrating their tenth anniversary on May 12 at the Old Stone House in Brooklyn, where they will share their writings about mothers and motherhood. As always, the event, curated by Louise Crawford and Sophia Romero, will start off with a reading of the Edgy Moms Manifesto, which was written by founder and OTBKB (Only the Blog Knows Brooklyn) blogger Crawford and which explains what makes someone an Edgy Mom: “She’s feisty and fun and a little bit zany. She whines to her friends and can be a bit of a martyr. She fantasizes about taking long trips without her children, and getting a room of her own on Block Island with a computer and a view of the sea. She lets her kids have dessert before dinner, reheated pizza for breakfast. . . . She’s afraid she’s ruined her kids somehow. That everything is her fault. If only she’d followed those expert books. Or even read them. . . .” Among the patron saintesses of Edgy Moms are Lucille Ball, Melissa Etheridge, the Old Woman Who Lived in a Shoe, Lenore Skenazy, Maya Angelou, and Marge Simpson. Happy Mother’s Day to all!
BAM’s second annual RadioLoveFest, a collaboration presented with WNYC, continues with a special Selected Shorts evening celebrating the thirtieth anniversary of the popular Symphony Space series in which a roster of film and theater actors reads short fiction. On May 9 at 7:30, Hope Davis (American Splendor, In Treatment), Bobby Cannavale (Blue Jasmine, The Motherfucker with the Hat), Parker Posey (The House of Yes, Broken English), and host Robert Sean Leonard (The Music Man, House, M.D.) will focus on works dealing with unexpected encounters. RadioLoveFest continues through May 10 with such other programs as Hilary Frank’s “Speed Dating for Mom Friends,” Glynn Washington’s “Snap Judgment LIVE!,” Anna Sale’s “Death, Sex & Money,” John Schaefer’s “Mexrrissey: Mexico Loves Morrissey,” and “Leonard Lopate & Locavores: Brooklyn as a Brand.”
Who: Jay Rubin, Ted Goossen, Aoko Matsuda, Satoshi Kitamura, Motoyuki Shibata, and Roland Kelts
What: Lecture, discussion, and reception
Where: Japan Society, 333 East 47th St. at First Ave., 212-715-1258
When: Thursday, May 7, $12, 6:30
Why: Haruki Murakami is one of the world’s greatest living writers, but he couldn’t have reached that level without working with outstanding translators. That critical literary art form is explored in this Japan Society program, featuring Jay Rubin, who has translated such Murakami books as The Wind-Up Bird Chronicles, Norwegian Wood, and 1Q84, and Ted Goossen, who translated The Strange Library and this summer’s Wind/Pinball: Two Early Novels, the long-awaited official English-language publications of Murakami’s Hear the Wind Sing and Pinball, 1973. Goossen will also talk about his debut novel, The Sun Gods. Joining Rubin and Goossen will be authors Aoko Matsuda and Satoshi Kitamura and Murakami translating partner Motoyuki Shibata, with Monkey Business coeditor Roland Kelts serving as narrator. The literary evening, which will conclude with a reception, is part of a Monkey Business tour that will also be stopping off at BookCourt on May 3, Asia Society on May 4, and McNally Jackson on May 7; the latest edition of Monkey Business features a new essay by Murakami. Murakami fans might also want to check out Ninagawa Company’s theatrical production of Kafka on the Shore, which comes to the Lincoln Center Festival July 23-26.
Multiple locations in Brooklyn, Queens, and Manhattan
Saturday, May 2 free
More than two dozen independent bookstores in Manhattan, Brooklyn, and Queens are participating in Independent Bookstore Day on May 2, with signings, readings, lectures, film screenings, art exhibits, children’s activities, giveaways, games, food tastings, discussions, and, in several cases, free beer, to steer you clear of Amazon and B&N. Guitarist Gary Lucas will be performing live at bookbook on Bleecker St. Paul Durham, Matt Myklusch, Michael Northrop, Dianne K. Salerni, and Josh Lieb join together for a Fantastic Middle Grade panel at Books of Wonder. Amy Hest, Chris Raschka, Deborah Heligman, and Cynthia Weill are among a dozen authors and illustrators who will be at Bank Street Book Store. Housing Works will host a Kidlit Game Show emceed by C. Alexander London. Colm Tóibín, Eileen Myles, Joseph O’Neill, DJ Spooky, Said Sayrafiezadeh, and others are among the literati taking part in a marathon Langston Hughes reading at McNally Jackson. Jon Scieszka will lead a Mad Scientist Party at the Community Bookstore, followed by an evening celebration with Paul Auster, William Corbett, and Felix Harr. The powerHouse Arena will launch Luke’s Lobster’s Real Maine Food, with sample treats. And Raina Telgemeier and Dave Roman will be team captains in a game of Pictionary at the Astoria Bookshop during this first-ever national Independent Bookstore Day.
Brooklyn Botanic Garden
900 Washington Ave. at Eastern Parkway
Saturday, April 25, and Sunday, April 26, $20-$25 (children under twelve free), 10:00 am - 6:00 pm
It’s been a ridiculously cold and long winter, but springtime finally seems to be here, and with it comes one of our favorite annual festivals, the Sakura Matsuri at the Brooklyn Botanic Garden. The weekend celebrates the beauty of the blossoming of the cherry trees with live music and dance, parades, workshops, demonstrations, martial arts, fashion shows, Ikebana flower arranging, a bonsai exhibit, Shogi chess, garden tours, shopping, book signings, Japanese food, and more. Below are just some of the highlights of this always lovely party, with many events going on all day long.
Saturday, April 25
The Battersby Show: Beginner Cosplay Crafting, with Charles Battersby, Ann Milana, Lady Ava, Mink-the-Satyr, and Uncle Yo, J-Lounge at Osborne Garden, 12 noon
Sogetsu Ikebana Demonstration, with Yoko Ikura and Shoko Iwata, auditorium, 1:00
Dancejapan with Sachiyo Ito, Main Stage, Cherry Esplanade, 1:15
Ukioy-e Illustration Demonstration with Artist Jed Henry, J-Lounge at Osborne Garden, 2:00
Samurai Sword Soul, Main Stage, Cherry Esplanade, 2:15
Urasenke Tea Ceremony, auditorium, 3:00 & 4:15
Takarabune Dance, Main Stage, Cherry Esplanade, 3:15
Hanagasa Odori Parade with flower hat dance by the Japanese Folk Dance Institute of New York, J-Lounge at Osborne Garden, 4:15
Akim Funk Buddha’s Urban Tea Ceremony, Main Stage, Cherry Esplanade, 5:00
Sunday, April 26
Children’s Suzuki Recital, Brooklyn College Preparatory Center, auditorium, 11:30
Awa Odori Parade, with Takarabune Dance, J-Lounge at Osborne Garden, 12 noon & 3:00
The Battersby Show: What Is Cosplay? with Charles Battersby, Aleta Pardalis, Dokudel, Mario Bueno, Uncle Yo, and YuffieBunny, J-Lounge at Osborne Garden, 1:00
Rock and Roll Love book signing with Misako Rocks!, J-Lounge at Osborne Garden, 2:00
Sohenryu-Style Tea Ceremony with Soumi Shimizu and Sōkyo Shimizu, auditorium, 2:30
Japanese Folk Dance Institute of New York performs Minbu dances, Main Stage, Cherry Esplanade, 3:00
Magician Rich Kameda, J-Lounge at Osborne Garden, 4:00
NY Suwa Taiko Kids All Stars, Main Stage, Cherry Esplanade, 4:15
The Sixth Annual Sakura Matsuri Cosplay Fashion Show, with original music by Taiko Masala, Main Stage, Cherry Esplanade, 5:15