This Week in New York Insider's Guide to Arts & Culture in New York City Since 2001


(photo by Adele Wilkes)

Joshua Pether’s Jupiter Orbiting is part of First Nations Dialogues festival (photo by Adele Wilkes)

Multiple venues
January 5-12

The First Nations Dialogues Lenapehoking/New York festival takes place January 5-12 with live performances, community gatherings, discussions, and other special programs focusing on Indigenous cultures in the US, Canada, and Australia. The centerpiece is KIN, a series of events curated by Emily Johnson that includes three conversations with Paola Balla, Genevieve Grieves, and Johnson; a fabric workshop with Spiderwoman Theater cofounder Muriel Miguel; the play-reading series “Reflections of Native Voices,” with Muriel Miguel, Gloria Miguel, Carolyn Dunn, Ed Bourgeois, Henu Josephine Tarrant, Rachael Maza, and Nicholson Billey; presentations by Joshua Pether and S. J. Norman; and the outdoor ceremonial fire gathering “Kinstillatory Mappings in Light and Dark Matter.” Kicking off the Global First Nations Performance Network, First Nations Dialogues is held in partnership with the Lenape Center, Amerinda, American Indian Community House, Abrons Arts Center, American Realness, Danspace Project, La MaMa, Performance Space New York, Safe Harbors Indigenous Collective, Under the Radar, the Association of Performing Arts Presenters, and the International Society for the Performing Arts. Below are some of the highlights.

Saturday, January 5
Tëmikèkw, an honoring and welcome gathering, with Muriel Miguel, Gloria Miguel, and Deborah Ratelle of Spiderwoman Theater, Diane Fraher (Osage/Cherokee) of Amerinda, the SilverCloud Singers led by Kevin Tarrant of the Hopi and HoChunk Nations, Laura Ortman of the Apache Nation, and fancy shawl dancer Anatasia McAllister of the Colville Confederated Tribes and Hopi Nation, Danspace Project, free with RSVP, 12:30 – 4:00 pm

Saturday, January 5, 7:00
Sunday, January 6, 3:00

Jupiter Orbiting, by Joshua Pether, immersive movement-based work about dissociation and trauma, Performance Space New York, $15

Tuesday, January 8, 7:30
Cicatrix 1 (that which is taken/that which remains), by S. J Norman, four-hour durational ritual, Performance Space New York, $15

Wednesday, January 9, 10:00
Thursday, January 10, 10:00
Friday, January 11, 1:00

Serpentine, by Daina Ashbee, performed by Areli Moran to music composed by Jean-Françoise Blouin, La MaMa, Downstairs Theater, $20-$25

Friday, January 10, 2:00, 6:00, 8:00
Footwork/Technique, by Mariaa Randall, incorporating contemporary Aboriginal footwork and dance legacies, Performance Space New York, $15


(photo by Ted Roeder)

Annual Poetry Project marathon is highlight of New Year’s Day (photo by Ted Roeder)

Who: The Poetry Project
What: Forty-fifth annual New Year’s Day Marathon Reading
Where: The Poetry Project at St. Mark’s Church-in-the-Bowery, 131 East Tenth St., 212-674-0910
When: Monday, January 1, $20-$25, 2:00 pm
Why: More than 150 writers, musicians, actors, dancers, and other artists will take the podium in this annual benefit for the Poetry Project, which “promotes, fosters, and inspires the reading and writing of contemporary poetry by (a) presenting contemporary poetry to diverse audiences, (b) increasing public recognition, awareness, and appreciation of poetry and other arts, (c) providing a community setting in which poets and artists can exchange ideas and information, and (d) encouraging the participation and development of new poets from a broad range of styles.” This year’s forty-fifth annual marathon boasts another fab lineup to welcome in the new year, including Andrea Abi-Karam, Ammiel Alcalay, Justin Allen, Julie Alsop, Ed Askew, J. Mae Barizo, Jim Behrle, Anselm Berrigan, Lee Ann Brown & Janice Lowe, Yoshiko Chuma, Lauren Clark, Todd Colby, John Coletti, Lydia Cortes, Brenda Coultas, Alex Cuff, r. erica doyle, Marcella Durand, Mel Elberg, Betsy Fagin, Avram Fefer, Jennifer Firestone, Kay Gabriel, Marwa Helal, Barbara Henning, Bob Holman, Sophia Hussain, Paolo Javier, Pierre Joris, Millie Kapp & Matt Shalzi, Vincent Katz, erica kaufman, Amy King, Sue Landers, Denizé Lauture, Rachel Levitsky, Matt Longabucco, Filip Marinovich, Douglas A. Martin, Andriniki Mattis, Caits Meissner, Carley Moore, Dave Morse, Sahar Muradi, Uche Nduka, Precious Okoyomon, Laura Ortman, Trace Peterson, Nicole Peyrafitte, Lorelei Ramirez, El Roy Red, Bob Rosenthal, Judah Rubin, John Rufo, Tom Savage, Purvi Shah, Jayson Smith, Sean D. Henry Smith, Pamela Sneed, Patricia Spears Jones, Max Steele, Sara Jane Stoner, Bridget Talone, Susie Timmons, Edwin Torres, Tony Towle, Cat Tyc, Aldrin Valdez, Anna Vitale, Morgan Vo, Asiya Wadud, Anne Waldman with Fast Speaking Music, Lewis Warsh, Jacqueline Waters, Candace Williams, Rachael Wilson, Matvei Yankelevich, the Double Yews, Don Yorty, Sparrow / Foamola, and many others.


what the dickens

Who: The New York City Master Chorale, Megan Abbott, Scott Adsit, Mike Albo, Jami Attenberg, Sandra Bauleo, Tara Isabella Burton, Alexander Chee, Vinson Cunningham, Maria Dahvana Headley, Marcy Dermansky, Jo Firestone, Angela Flournoy, Alice Gregory, Jill Hennessy, Suki Kim, Maris Kreizman, Victor LaValle, Min Jin Lee, Lisa Lucas, Noreen Malone, Leon Neyfakh, Max Read, Rosie Schaap, Elissa Schappell, Rob Spillman, J. Courtney Sullivan, Sarah Weinman, and more
What: “What the Dickens?”
Where: Housing Works Bookstore Cafe, 126 Crosby St., 212-334-3324
When: Saturday, December 15, free with advance RSVP, 12 noon - 4:30 pm
Why: On December 15, Housing Works will present its ninth annual marathon reading of Charles Dickens’s 1843 holiday classic, a ghost story about a poor family and a wealthy miser. “Marley was dead: to begin with. There is no doubt whatever about that,” the novel begins. “The register of his burial was signed by the clergyman, the clerk, the undertaker, and the chief mourner. Scrooge signed it: and Scrooge’s name was good upon ’Change, for anything he chose to put his hand to. Old Marley was as dead as a door-nail.” The event kicks off at 12 noon with Christmas carols sung by the New York City Master Chorale, followed by dozens of performers reading passages from the book. Seasonal treats will be available for purchase, and everything in the store will be ten percent off. Admission is free and you can come and go as you please, but advance RSVP is recommended.


Gary Shteyngart will present his latest book at the JCC on December 12 (photo by Brigitte Lacombe)

Gary Shteyngart will present his latest book at the JCC on December 12 (photo by Brigitte Lacombe)

Who: Gary Shteyngart
What: Arts + Ideas — Conversations
Where: Marlene Meyerson JCC Manhattan, 334 Amsterdam Ave. at 76th St., 646-505-4444
When: Wednesday, December 12, $20, 8:00
Why: Leningrad-born author Gary Shteyngart will be at the Marlene Meyerson JCC Manhattan on December 12 for the latest “Person Place Thing” event, being held in conjunction with the publication of his most recent book, Lake Success (Random House, September 2018, $28). Shteyngart, whose previous novels include Super Sad True Love Story and Absurdistan, will discuss the book and sign copies; there will also be live klezmer music by Brooklyn-based new traditionalists Tsibele. “Barry Cohen, a man with 2.4 billion dollars of assets under management, staggered into the Port Authority Bus Terminal. He was visibly drunk and bleeding. There was a clean slice above his left brow where the nanny’s fingernail had gouged him and, from his wife, a teardrop scratch below his eye. It was 3:20 a.m.” So begins Lake Success, the first chapter of which is titled “Destination America.”


Maira Kalman, Sometimes the women were jailed for months, gouache on paper, 2018

Maira Kalman, “Sometimes the women were jailed for months,” gouache on paper, 2018 (courtesy Julie Saul Gallery)

Who: Maira Kalman
What: Book signing and exhibition
Where: Julie Saul Gallery, 535 West 22nd St. between Tenth & Eleventh Aves., sixth floor, 212-627-2410
When: Saturday, December 1, free, 3:00 -6:00
Why: Artist Maira Kalman will be at Chelsea’s Julie Saul Gallery on Saturday for the opening of her latest exhibit, “Bold & Brave,” in the project gallery, consisting of twenty-nine gouache paintings made in association with the book Bold & Brave: Ten Heroes Who Won Women the Right to Vote (Knopf, November 13, $18.99), written by Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand and illustrated by Kalman. Kalman will be signing books from 3:00 to 6:00. (She will also be signing copies of Sara Berman’s Closet, which she wrote with her son, Alex Kalman.) Among the heroes depicted in the book are Susan B. Anthony, Harriet Tubman, Alice Paul, Inez Milholland, Ida B. Wells, Mary Church Terrell, Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Sojourner Truth, Jovita Idar, and Lucy Burns. “They fought so women could be heard,” writes Gillibrand, who also pays tribute to her grandmother Dorothea “Polly” Noonan, who was recently portrayed by Edie Falco in the New Group world premiere of The True. Also on view at the gallery is Sarah Anne Johnson’s “The Cave.”


Kyabgön Phakchok Rinpoche and Erric Solomon will discuss ancient wisdom, the tech future, and radical happiness at the Rubin on November 10 (photo by twi-ny/mdr)

Kyabgön Phakchok Rinpoche and Erric Solomon will discuss ancient wisdom, the future of tech, and radical happiness at the Rubin on November 10 (photo by twi-ny/mdr)

Rubin Museum of Art
150 West 17th St. at Seventh Ave.
Saturday, November 10, $25 (VIP $45), 3:00

“Getting to know your own mind should be fun,” former Silicon Valley tech executive Erric Solomon said at a recent cocktail party celebrating the release of Radically Happy (Shambhala, $24.95), the new book he cowrote with his longtime friend, Tibetan Buddhist teacher Kyabgön Phakchok Rinpoche, who explained, “It’s about how you can be happy, not why. We already know why we should be happy.” Solomon and Phakchok Rinpoche will be at the Rubin Museum on November 10 at 3:00 for the talk “Ancient Wisdom and Tech Future”; this past summer, Rinpoche appeared at the Rubin for two presentations, a mindfulness meditation and “Stories of Padmasambhava.” Radically Happy: A User’s Guide to the Mind features a foreword by Daniel Goleman and Tara Bennett-Goleman, colorful artwork by Julian Pang, and such chapters as “Why You Need Radical Happiness, or How to Be Less of a Dog and More of a Lion,” “The Looking-for-Happiness Conundrum,” and “Contemplating the Interdependent Nature of Reality.” As the Golemans note, “Phakchok Rinpoche lives much like the rest of us and so can draw on his own doubts, anger, and other familiar feelings to illustrate ways we can each find steadier footing in the rocky realities of our lives.” Solomon and Rinpoche might use the word “radical” a lot in the book, but their approach applies common sense to everyday existence, believing that problems can “be resolved by being more present-moment focused and by thinking of the welfare of others. Could the path to happiness really be that simple?” Part of the Rubin’s yearlong investigation into the future, the talk will be followed by a book signing; general admission is $25, but for $45 you get a signed copy of the book, preferred seating, and a karma tour.


Faith Ringgold, “United States of Attica,” offset lithograph on paper, © 2018 courtesy ACA Galleries, © 2018 Faith Ringgold

Faith Ringgold, “United States of Attica,” offset lithograph on paper, © 2018 courtesy ACA Galleries, © 2018 Faith Ringgold

Brooklyn Museum
200 Eastern Parkway at Washington St.
Saturday, November 3, free (some events require advance tickets), 5:00 - 11:00

The Brooklyn Museum explores art and Black Power in the November edition of its free First Saturday program. There will be live performances by Antoine Drye, Shelley Nicole’s blaKbüshe, and the Brooklyn Dance Festival; an Art & Dialogue discussion with curators Valerie Cassel Oliver and Catherine Morris; a hands-on workshop in which participants can create miniature paintings inspired by jazz and the work of Alma Thomas, William T. Williams, and others; a curator tour of “Soul of a Nation: Art in the Age of Black Power” with Ashley James; original poetry and music by Jaime Lee Lewis, Jennifer Falu, Joekenneth Museau, Asante Amin, Frank Malloy, and Terry Lovette in addition to excerpts from the 1968 collection Black Fire: An Anthology of Afro-American Writing; pop-up poetry with Sean DesVignes, Joel Dias-Porter, and Omotara James of Cave Canem; an “Archives as Raw History” tour with archivist Molly Seegers; and the community talk “Black Art Futures Fund.” In addition, the galleries will be open late so you can check out “Soul of a Nation: Art in the Age of Black Power,” “Syria, Then and Now: Stories from Refugees a Century Apart,” “One: Do Ho Suh,” “Half the Picture: A Feminist Look at the Collection,” “Something to Say: Brooklyn Hi-Art! Machine, Deborah Kass, Kameelah Janan Rasheed, and Hank Willis Thomas,” “Cecilia Vicuña: Disappeared Quipu,” “Rob Wynne: FLOAT,” “Infinite Blue,” “A Woman’s Afterlife: Gender Transformation in Ancient Egypt,” and more.