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


fleet week

Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum and other locations in all five boroughs
Pier 86, 12th Ave. & 46th St.
May 24–29, pier activities free unless otherwise noted

The U.S. Navy, Marine Corps, and Coast Guard will be pouring into New York City for Fleet Week, which takes place May 24-29 at the Intrepid and other locations. The annual celebration, which began in 1982, leads into Memorial Day weekend, reminding everyone that the holiday is not just about barbecues and beaches. Below are only some of the highlights; all pier events are free and open to the public. Admission to the museum is $17-$33 but free for all U.S. military and veterans.

Wednesday, May 24
Parade of Ships, New York Harbor, 8:15 am - 1:00 pm

Fort Wadsworth Fleet Week and National Park Centennial Celebration, Fort Wadsworth Overlook, Staten Island, 9:00 - 11:30 am

U.S. Navy Divers, New York Aquarium, 10:00 am - 3:00 pm

Thursday, May 25
U.S. Coast Guard Silent Drill Team Performance, Metropolitan Museum of Art, 11:00 am

U.S. Coast Guard Silent Drill Team Performance, 9/11 Memorial Plaza, 1:00

Thursday, May 25
Friday, May 26

Public Tours of Visiting Ship Research Vessel Neil Armstrong, end of pier 86, 10:00 am – 12:30 pm

Thursday, May 25
Friday, May 26
Saturday, May 27

U.S. Navy Dive Tank in Times Square, plaza between 43rd & 44th Sts., 10:00 am - 5:00 pm

Thursday, May 25
Monday, May 29

General Public Ship Tours, Brooklyn Cruise Terminal, Homeport Pier in Staten Island, Pier 92 in Manhattan, 8:00 am - 5:00 pm

Friday, May 26
Movie on the Flight Deck: Top Gun (Tony Scott, 1986), introduced by former NASA astronaut and T-38 pilot Gregory C. Johnson, 7:00

Navy Band Concert, with Navy Band Northeast Rhode Island Sound, Military Island, Times Square, 8:00

Friday, May 26
Monday, May 29

Giant Leaps Planetarium Show, Intrepid, Hangar 3, Rotunda, 12:15 – 3:15

Saturday, May 27
Marine Day, with a formation run, military static displays, demonstrations, and a performance by the USMC Battle Color Detachment, 8:00 am - 4:00 pm

Broadway Showcase: Cats, Kinky Boots, School of Rock, Ernest Shackleton Loves Me, The Imbible: A Spirited History of Drinking, and Natasha, Pierre & the Great Comet of 1812, emceed by The Play That Goes Wrong, Pier 86, Main Stage, 12 noon

U.S. Coast Guard Search & Rescue Demo, Homeport Pier, Staten Island, 12 noon

CAMMO Voices of Service, Pier 86, Main Stage, 1:30 & 4:30

American Military Spouses Choir, Pier 86, Main Stage, 3:30 & 5:00

Navy Band Concert, with Navy Band Northeast Rhode Island Sound, Military Island, Times Square, 6:00

Battle of the Big Bands, with Harlem Renaissance Orchestra, Glenn Crytzer Orchestra with guest vocalist Hannah Gill, Gunhild Carling with the Swingadelic Big Band, Jason Prover and the Sneak Thievery Orchestra, swing dancing lessons, the Bathtub Ginnys, the Intrepid Swing Dance Brigade, contests, MC Dandy Wellington, DJ VaVa Voom and Odysseus Bailer, Flight Deck, $55-$95, 7:00 pm – 1:00 am

U.S. Marine Corps Battle Color Detachment Performance, Father Duffy Square, Times Square, 8:00

Fleet Week will feature celebrations, commemorations, and memorials May 24-30 in all five boroughs (photo courtesy Fleet Week New York)

Fleet Week will feature celebrations, commemorations, and memorials May 24-30 in all five boroughs (photo courtesy Fleet Week New York)

Saturday, May 27
Sunday, May 28

Activities, displays, demonstrations, tours, and more, including “Dive into Density,” U.S. Coast Guard Silent Drill Team, SeaPerch Pool Demonstrations, antique military vehicles, “Signal Flags,” CEC/Seabee Historical Foundation’s STEM activity, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers North Atlantic Division, “Catch a Cable,” 10:00 am – 6:00 pm

Saturday, May 27
Sunday, May 28
Monday, May 29

Explosive Ordnance Disposal Navy Divers, New York Aquarium, Coney Island, $11.95 - $14.95

Meet the Author: Julia Maki, My Mom Hunts Submarines, Hangar 2, Stage, 11:00 am, 12 noon, 1:00

Sunday, May 28
Performance by Tap Life, Pier 86, Main Stage, 12:30

Performance by America’s Sweethearts, Pier 86, Main Stage, 1:00 & 3:00

Performance by Deployed: A New Musical, Pier 86, Main Stage, 1:30 & 4:30

Performance by the 78th Army Band, Pier 86, Main Stage, 2:00

Performance by Exit 12 Dance Company, Pier 86, Main Stage, 3:30

Navy Band Concert, with Navy Band Northeast Rhode Island Sound, Military Island, Times Square, 4:00

Theater of War, with Zach Grenier, Kathryn Erbe, and Reg E. Cathey, Allison & Howard Lutnick Theater, free with RSVP, 7:00

Monday, May 29
Soldiers’ and Sailors’ Memorial Day Observance, commemorating the seventy-fifth anniversary of the Battle of Midway, Soldiers’ and Sailors’ Monument, Riverside Dr. & 89th St., 10:00 am

Activities, displays, demonstrations, tours, and more, including Minus 5 Ice Sculpting Experience, CEC/Seabee Historical Foundation’s STEM activity, FDNY Fire Safety Experience, Dina Parise Racing 3,000HP Fallen Heroes Cadillac and Porta Tree display, Veterans Vision Project and Arizona State University, U.S. Air Force Auxiliary, Veteran Artist Program, Hudson Valley Paws for a Cause, Intrepid former crew members, “Dive into Density,” SeaPerch Pool Demonstrations, “Signal Flags,” “Catch a Cable,” “What Floats Your Boat?,” Pier 86, 10:00 am – 6:00 pm

Memorial Day Ceremony, Pier 86, 11:00 am

Search & Rescue Demonstration by the U.S. Coast Guard, end of Pier 86, 2:00

Bubble Garden by the Gazillion Bubble Show, Pier 86, 2:00 – 6:00


Amy Goodman

Amy Goodman will be at McNally Jackson on May 9 to discuss Democracy Now! and more

Who: Amy Goodman, David Goodman
What: Author talk and signing
Where: McNally Jackson Books, 52 Prince St., 212-274-1160
When: Tuesday, May 9, free, 9:00
Why: For more than two decades, Democracy Now! cohost and executive producer Amy Goodman has been fighting the good fight, providing award-winning independent journalism that refuses to take the easy way out. Goodman is currently on a national speaking tour that brings her back to her New York City base in conjunction with the release of the paperback edition of Democracy Now! Twenty Years Covering the Movements Changing America (Simon & Schuster, April 2017, $16). In the introduction, Goodman describes how it all started: “Giving voice to the grassroots. When the 1996 election wrapped up, with President Clinton easily reelected, we thought that Democracy Now! would wrap up as well. But there was more demand for the show after the elections than before. Why? There is a hunger for authentic voices — not the same handful of pundits on the network shows who know so little about so much, explaining the world to us and getting it so wrong.” The book features such chapters as “The War and Peace Report,” “The Whistleblowers,” “The Rise of the 99 Percent,” “Climate Justice,” and “The LGBTQ Revolution,” which should give people an idea of what will be discussed when Goodman appears at McNally Jackson on May 9 at 9:00, introduced by her brother and one of her cowriters, David Goodman. (The other cowriter is Denis Moynihan.) On May 12, Goodman will be at 1199 SEIU to receive the 2017 Communicator of the Year Award from the Metro NY Labor Communications Council, introduced by her Democracy Now! cohost, Juan González; the event is open to the public (12 noon, $10-$35).


punk avenue punk rock all stars

Who: Phil Marcade, the Rousers + Friends (Steve Shevlin, Barry Ryan, Danny Ray, JF Vergel), the Waldos, Lenny Kaye, Andy Shernoff, Lynne Von, Daddy Long Legs, Legs McNeil
What: New York City book launch of Punk Avenue: Inside the New York City Underground 1972-1982 by Phil Marcade (Three Rooms Press, May 2, $15.95)
Where: Le Poisson Rouge, 158 Bleecker St., 212-505-3474
When: Tuesday, May 2, $20-$25, 7:00
Why: “Why were the seventies so important and interesting? Probably because nobody cared,” Debbie Harry writes in the preface to Phil Marcade’s Punk Avenue. In the foreword, legendary punk chronicler Legs McNeil explains, “If I ever was going to direct a movie of Please Kill Me, the book Gillian McCain and I did, I would put Philippe Marcade in the background of every scene, giggling with some exotic French beauty — just like in real life.” On May 2, Marcade, who was the lead singer of the Senders going back to 1976, will emerge from the background and be front and center at Le Poisson Rouge for a party celebrating the release of his book, which details the early punk scene in New York City, from his stint in jail to his fling with Nan Goldin, from the 1977 blackout to hanging with just about everyone who was part of the punk scene, at such places as Max’s Kansas City, the Chelsea Hotel, and CBGB’s. Marcade will perform with the Rousers + Friends, including Steve Shevlin, Barry Ryan, Danny Ray, and JF Vergel, along with the Waldos (feat. Walter Lure from the Heartbreakers), Lenny Kaye, Andy Shernoff of the Dictators, Lynne Von, Daddy Long Legs, and other special guests. In addition, Marcade will sit down with McNeil for a conversation and sign copies of the book.


pen world voices

Multiple venues
April 30 - May 7, free - $35

The thirteenth annual PEN World Voices Festival of International Literature turns its attention to a hot-button issue in America and around the world, taking a hard look at gender and power. The festival runs April 30 to May 7, featuring panel discussions, lectures, readings, plays, Q&As, film screenings, literary pub crawls, and more. The curators for this year’s festival, which explores bigotry, misogyny, and xenophobia as well, are Susan Bernofsky, Jennifer Finney Boylan, Kim Chan, Ram Devineni, Mona Eltahawy, Marlon James, Saeed Jones, Meg Lemke, Valeria Luiselli, Paul Morris, Chinelo Okparanta, Steph Opitz, Clarisse Rosaz Shariyf, and Andy Tepper, chaired by Rob Spillman. “PEN America launched the World Voices Festival after 9/11 at a moment when the U.S. was becoming cut off from the rest of the globe,” PEN America executive director Suzanne Nossel said in a statement. “Amid visa bans and an America First foreign policy, World Voices is now an important antidote to an America at risk of only talking to itself, fanning baseless fears, and damaging relations with allies and people around the world. This year’s festival will center on both celebration and mobilization, rallying around PEN America’s mission to defend free expression and enable the breadth of voices vital to an open marketplace of ideas.” Below is one highlight for each day; also among the more than 150 participants from 40 countries are Carrie Brownstein, Patti Smith, Salman Rushdie, Laurie Anderson, Rita Mae Brown, Jessica Hagedorn, José Emilio Pacheco, Eileen Myles, Trevor Noah, Eiko Otake, and Ani DiFranco.

Sunday, April 30
Festival Prelude! A House Divided, the Great Hall, the Cooper Union, free with advance reservations, 3:00

Monday, May 1
World Voices: International Play Festival 2017, featuring Patricia Cornelius’s Shit (4:00), Natal’ya Vorozhbit’s Take Out the Rubbish, Sasha (6:00), and Mîrza Metîn’s Hungry Dogs (8:00), CUNY Segal Theatre, free

Tuesday, May 2
Exposure: Politics, Sex, and Power, with Rokudenashiko, Ali Asgar, and Mohsen Namjoo, moderated by Alexandra Munroe, Dixon Place, $15, 7:00

Wednesday, May 3
Portraying Gay Male Life Today, with Tobin Low, Andrew Solomon, Garth Greenwell, Ali Asgar, and Edouard Louis, the Greene Space at WNYC, $15, 7:00

Thursday, May 4
Gender, Power, and Authoritarianism in the Dystopian Age, with Marge Piercy, Alice Sola Kim, Namwali Sperwell, and Basma Abdel Aziz, New School Auditorium, $15, 6:30

Friday, May 5
Pen vs. Sword: Satire vs. the State, with Mo Rocca, Abdourahman Waberi, Aleksandar Hemon, Masha Gessen, and others, moderated by Elissa Schappel, St. Josephs College, $10, 7:00

Saturday, May 6
Women in Ink, with Roz Chast, Liana Finck, Rayma Suprani, and Emily Flake, moderated by Liza Donnelly, Dixon Place, $20, 12 noon

Saturday, May 6
Sunday, May 7

The Arthur Miller Freedom to Write Lecture: Masha Gessen and Samantha Bee, the Great Hall, the Cooper Union, $35, 6:00

Sunday, May 7
Unapologetically Afro-Latina, with Dr. Marta Moreno Vega, Nancy Morejon, Magdalena Albizu, and Amanda Alcantara, Apollo Theater, free with advance reservations, 4:15


Japanese Folk Dance Institute of NY at Sakura Matsuri. Photo by Julie Markes. Courtesy of Brooklyn Botanic Garden.

The Japanese Folk Dance Institute of NY will return to annual Sakura Matsuri in Brooklyn (photo by Julie Markes / courtesy of Brooklyn Botanic Garden)

Brooklyn Botanic Garden
900 Washington Ave. at Eastern Parkway
Saturday, April 29, and Sunday, April 30, $25-$30 (children under twelve free), 10:00 am - 6:00 pm

It’s still frightfully cold as May approaches, but perhaps spring will be in the air this weekend for one of the city’s most fabulous 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, a community bookstore, a bonsai exhibit, Shogi chess, garden tours, the Mataro Ningyo Doll Museum, book signings, giant origami, food, clothing, cosplay, kimonos, insect hotels, a Japanese market (Ito En, Minamoto Kitchoan, Royce’ and Raaka Chocolates, sushi pillows, tenugui wraps, handmade hair ornaments, Togei Kyoshitsu Ceramics), lots of children’s activities, and more. Among the guests are Runi Hara, Kate T. Williamson, Sophocles Plokamakis, Jed Henry, Rio Koike, Soumi Shimizu, Sōkyo Shimizu, Akim Funk Buddha, Jeremy Aaron Horland, J-Music Ensemble, and Tao Yaguchi. Below are daily featured highlights of this always lovely party, with many events going on all day long and over both days; advance tickets are required. To track the blooming of the cherries, check out the updates here.

Saturday, April 29

The Art of Kendama (wooden toys in motion), with Team KENYC and DJ Panic, J-Lounge Stage at the Osborne Garden, 11:00

Takarabune Dance: Awa Odori dance and narimono drum ensemble from Shikoku, J-Lounge Stage at the Osborne Garden, 12 noon

Dancejapan with Sachiyo Ito, Main Stage at Cherry Esplanade, 1:30

Ukiyo-e Illustration Demonstration with Jed Henry, Ink Alley at the Osborne Garden, 2:00

Stand-up Comic Rio: Rio Koike’s Tokyo Magic Show, J-Lounge Stage at the Osborne Garden, 3:15

Sohenryu Tea Ceremony, with tea masters Soumi Shimizu and Sōkyo Shimizu, BBG Tea Center at the Auditorium, 4:00

Hanagasa Odori flower hat procession, with the Japanese Folk Dance Institute of New York, J-Lounge Stage at the Osborne Garden, 4:00

Uhnellys indie rock, Main Stage at Cherry Esplanade, 5:15

Sunday, April 30

Japanese Garden Stroll, guided tour, Japanese Hill-and-Pond Garden, 10:00 am

Akim Funk Buddha’s Urban Tea Ceremony Unplugged, BBG Tea Center at the Auditorium, 12 noon

Kuni Mikami & East of the Sun, J-Lounge Stage at the Osborne Garden, 1:00

Sohenryu Tea Ceremony for Families, with tea masters Soumi Shimizu and Sōkyo Shimizu, BBG Tea Center at the Auditorium, 2:00

KuroPOP, J-pop dance party, J-Lounge at Osborne Garden, 2:30

Manga Drawing with Misako Rocks, the Osborne Garden, 3:00

NY Suwa Taiko Kids All Stars, J-Lounge Stage at the Osborne Garden, 4:15

The Eighth Annual Sakura Matsuri Cosplay Fashion Show, with hosts Becka Noel and Dhareza Cosplayza and original music by Taiko Masala, Main Stage at Cherry Esplanade, 5:15


this fight is our fight

Who: Elizabeth Warren
What: Author discussion on This Fight Is Our Fight: The Battle to Save America’s Middle Class (Metropolitan, April 18, $28)
Where: Union Square Barnes & Noble, 33 East 17th St., 212-253-0810
When: Tuesday, April 18, free, 7:00 (priority-seating wristbands given out to book purchasers starting at 9:00 am)
Why: “Washington works great for the rich and powerful who can hire armies of lawyers and lobbyists, but it is not working very well for everyone else,” Massachusetts senator Elizabeth Warren said in a statement about her new book, This Fight Is Our Fight: The Battle to Save America’s Middle Class (Metropolitan, April 18, $28). “America’s once-solid middle class is on the ropes, and now Donald Trump and his administration seem determined to deliver the knock-out punch. At this perilous moment in our country’s history, it’s time to fight back — and I’m looking for more people to join me.” You can join the populist politician, who made headlines in February when she was silenced by Senate majority leader Mitch McConnell while reading a 1986 letter about attorney general nominee Jeff Sessions written by Coretta Scott King, when she launches her latest book at the Union Square Barnes & Noble on April 18 at 7:00. Wristbands will be given out beginning at nine o’clock that morning to people who have purchased a presigned copy of the book from that store. The event will feature a discussion but not an individual signing. The outspoken Warren, who considered a presidential run in 2016 and whose name has been bandied about as a potential candidate in 2020, has written such previous books as A Fighting Chance; Prosperity, Peace, Respect: How Presidents Have Mortgaged the People’s Agenda; and God Caesar and the Freedom of Religion: Freedom of Thought, Conscience and Religion. At Barnes & Noble, expect to see lots of attendees proclaiming, “She was warned. She was given an explanation. Nevertheless, she persisted.”


Tuesday, April 11, Barnes & Noble Union Square, 33 East 17th St., 212-253-0810, free, 7:00
Thursday, April 13, Alamo Drafthouse Downtown Brooklyn, 445 Albee Square West, 718-513-2547, 8:00

On May 30, 2015, filmmaker, writer, artist, and provocateur John Waters, aka the People’s Pervert and the Prince of Puke, gave the commencement speech at the Rhode Island School of Design, offering his unique advice about life after college, telling the graduating students, “Go out in the world and fuck it up beautifully.” That talk has now been adapted into the eighty-page book Make Trouble (Algonquin, April 11, $14.95), featuring line drawings by Eric Hanson. On April 11, Waters, who has made such films as Hairspray, Female Trouble, and Pink Flamingos, will be at the Union Square Barnes & Noble for a conversation with Christopher Bollen, editor at large at Interview magazine and author of Lightning People and Orient. After the conversation, Waters will sign copies of Make Trouble and just about anything else fans bring, and he will pose for photos as well. Wristbands will be given out beginning at 9:00 that morning to people who have purchased the new book at that B&N. Then, on Thursday, April 13, Waters will head to the Alamo Drafthouse in downtown Brooklyn for a screening of his 1970 cult classic, Multiple Maniacs, preceded by a Q&A with Waters; a copy of Make Trouble comes with every ticket.