twi-ny, this week in new york

Interactive Installation of the Week


1. Ernesto Neto’s giant exo-skeleton at the Park Ave. Armory

2. Architectural video installations by Yang Fudong and Aernout Mik

3. Celebrating Muslim culture at BAM, the Asia Society, and the Brooklyn Museum

4. Celebrating Michel Piccoli at FIAF

5. Plus Riff’s Rants & Raves: Film, including DEPARTURES, DRAG ME TO HELL, RASHOMON, UNMISTAKEN CHILD, and 24 CITY

6. Riff’s Rants & Raves: Live Music, including Au Revoir Simone, Mr. Scruff, Love Is All, SummerStage benefits, the Diamond Center, and Amadou & Mariam

7. Riff’s Rants & Raves: Dance, including MOMIX at the Joyce, John Jasperse at DTW, Camille A. Brown at the Joyce SoHo, Shakespeare at the Kaye Playhouse, and Alvin Ailey at BAM

8. Riff’s Rants & Raves: Theater, including free Shakespeare in the parks

9. Riff’s Rants & Raves: Art & Literature, including BookExpo America at the Javits Center, Joseph O’Neill at Book Court, and the MOCCA Art Festival

10. and twi-ny’s weekly recommendations, including book readings, film screenings, panel discussions, concerts, workshops, and more

Volume 8, Number 52
May 27 — June 10, 2009

Send all comments, suggestions, reviews, and questions to Mark Rifkin
at admin@twi-ny.com.

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Site Design/Subway Photo:
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Twi-ny, This Week in New York


Park Ave. Armory

643 Park Ave.

Through June 14

Admission: $10



shen wei dance slideshow

exhibition slideshow

For its first commission, the Park Avenue Armory arts organization turned to Brazilian mixed-media artist Ernesto Neto, who has created the wonderful "anthropodino," a giant interactive exo-skeleton that focuses on three of the five senses: sight, smell, and touch. The winding sculpture, made primarily of polyamide tulle and maple plywood, measures 192 feet long, 122 feet wide, and 69 feet high, looking from above like an abstract hand with too many fingers. The mammoth piece, set in the middle of the sixty-thousand-square-foot Wade Thompson Drill Hall, consists of various tunnel-like labyrinthine passageways where visitors can see through translucent membranes and push against the rubbery fabric of the skin, which is held in place by bonelike wooden stanchions. It’s like a trip inside and outside the human body, complete with dangling stalactites that resemble uvulas, filled with pepper, clove, cumin, ginger, turmeric, lavender, and chamomile, some of which are at face level so you can get a big, relaxing whiff.


Passageways wind in and out of exo-skeleton

You can also relax in the ridiculously comfortable beanbag room, where you just meld into the polyurethane foam. Or you might want to go for a dip in the swimming pool, where water is replaced by thousands of greenish blue small plastic balls. After that, you should head to the red room for a nap amid the smell of lavender, your head splayed out on a gravel-stuffed pillow. And then, as you make your way around the seemingly alive organic sculpture, you can run your toes through the colorful plastic garden and take a seat on the soft, multicolored rocks. The more you interact with "anthropodino," the more you will appreciate this unique, exciting, and fun experience. But don’t be so quick to leave the armory once you’re done playing. Neto’s 2009 film O SOPRO CRIANDO is on view in the Mary Divver Room, a five-minute short that contains a terrific surprise. You can also check out various rooms in the armory, including the Colonel’s Reception Room, the Board of Officers Room, the Veterans Room, and the Field and Staff Room, which contain military artifacts and a small café, where the brownies are unbelievable.

On Tuesday, June 2, Shen Wei Dance Arts performed a marvelous site-specific dance throughout Ernesto Neto’s "anthropodino," moving in, out, and around the exo-skeleton and eventually shedding their clothing, becoming one with the installation and the audience, which was encouraged to wander around the space as well, following the dancers; click here to see more of the special performance (photo by twi-ny/mdr)

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Film & Video Installations of the Week

Seven intellectuals are on their way in Yang Fudong epic


Asia Society and Museum

725 Park Ave. at 70th St.

Through September 13 (closed Monday)

Admission: $10 (free Fridays from 6:00 — 9:00)



Inspired by the Seven Sages of the Bamboo Grove, a group of seven Daoist intellectuals who broke away from Confucianism during the third-century Wei dynasty in favor of the more open, free-spirited qingtan movement, Yang Fudong’s SEVEN INTELLECTUALS IN A BAMBOO FOREST is a poetic five-hour black-and-white masterpiece of style, form, and substance. Consisting of five parts ranging in length from twenty-nine to ninety minutes and shown in five successive rooms on the second floor of the Asia Society, the films follow the exploits of five men and two women as they literally come down from the mountaintop and engage in twenty-first-century life. The first film begins with the protagonists sitting atop a rocky mountain, naked and alone; they slowly and silently put on modern-day clothing and make their way down, ready to interact with the world and break free of the locks and barriers that hinder personal freedom. "I am distant from my existence," the female narrator says at one point as they decide to search for the self. In the second part, structured like a French New Wave drama, they hang around in an apartment building smoking, drinking, listening to music, having sex, and talking about their existence. In part three, they take to the land, becoming farmers — but look out for a brutal, stomach-churning act of violence on an animal. In part four, they head to the sea, working as fishers; one of the most memorable moments of all five films is when the women are carried across the sand in small cast-iron bathtubs. And in part five, the seven wanderers party in a nightclub, drunk and debauched, or play an absurdist game of baseball on a roof, contemplating what it all means.

SEVEN INTELLECTUALS IN A BAMBOO FOREST, which was begun in 2003 and was filmed one part at a time, one every year through 2007, is a grand, existential work that is as gripping and compelling as it is challenging and baffling, a metaphor for the journey of the Chinese people during the twentieth century, when they came down from the mountain and became part of the world community. There’s a little bit of Jean-Luc Godard and Michelangelo Antonioni here, a whole lot of Matthew Barney and Andrei Takovsky there, some noir here, some Yakuza gangster film there, as the mysterious seven make their way through an ever-more confusing landscape, unable to let go of the luggage that keeps dragging them down. It’s a long film, but we recommend you see as much of it as you can. One way to experience it is by going on successive Friday nights, when admission to the museum is free. You can also sit in the doorway that separates the films, watching them two at a time, which is relatively easy to do with the last three parts, which contain no dialogue or narration. (In addition, Yang’s EAST OF QUE VILLAGE, 2007 is on view at Midtown’s Marian Goodman Gallery through June 20; see below for more info.)

Courtesy Marian Goodman Gallery

An injured dog struggles to survive in Yang Fudong installation


Marian Goodman Gallery

24 West 57th St. between Fifth & Sixth Aves., fourth floor

Through June 20 (closed Sunday and Monday)

Admission: free



Commissioned by the Tate Liverpool, EAST OF QUE VILLAGE, 2007 is a six-screen installation by Shanghai-based artist Yang Fudong, whose epic SEVEN INTELLECTUALS IN A BAMBOO FOREST is on view at the Asia Society (see above). The twenty-one-minute black-and-white films are projected onto four walls in Marian Goodman’s South Gallery, where viewers become immersed in the empty, vacant landscapes of contemporary rural China, in a part of the country left behind from the modernization of Beijing and other major cities and economic and cultural centers. Shot in Yang’s birthplace, the films follow the adventures of a limping dog as it interacts with a group of wild canines, local workers, and a small family, hopping along as it searches for food, safety, and companionship. "Almost all the households keep dogs as watchdogs," Yang writes about the installation. "The dogs are learning to survive, but dependent on their owner at the same time… Que Village is one of the small villages of only one hundred households. Lots of dogs live in the village as well, and are subject to disease, death, abandonment, or trafficking. But in the eyes of their masters, dogs are dogs, and in the end, they do not see the only road leading to the outside world in the east of Que Village." While certain sections of the work are heartbreaking, others are heartwarming as the dog battles the elements to keep on going.


Eight-channel installation gets cozy in Midtown gallery


The Project

37 West 57th St. between Fifth & Sixth Aves.

Tuesday — Saturday through June 26

Admission: free



In conjunction with his survey at MoMA, Aernout Mik is screening two of his works at the Project gallery just a few blocks away on West 57th St., which essentially gutted itself and has given the space over to the provocative Dutch artist. In one room filled with natural light streaming in from the windows, the two-channel TOUCH, RISE AND FALL (2008, 52 minutes) is on view, set in an airport security checkpoint where TSA employees thoroughly go through travelers’ luggage, carefully examining bottled liquids and slashing apart stuffed animals. The men, women, and children merely stand and watch, helpless to fight back against these totalitarian invasions. As per Mik’s style, the multiple channels display the same silent action in the same time, filmed from different angles, offering different views of what is going on. In the dark back room, the eight-channel PLYWOOD DWELLING (2009, 45 minutes), made in collaboration with Marjoleine Boonstra, depicts factory workers on breaks in small rooms where they can take naps in a bed or just hang out, seeking moments of privacy that end up being broadcast to the public. The most fascinating and oft-discussed aspect of Mik’s work is that it is impossible to tell how much of each film is real and how much is staged, and Mik ain’t telling. He plays with reality in such a way that forces the viewer to question not only what they are witnessing on the screens but what they then see once they leave the gallery and step into the real world. The films are shown in carefully designed architectural settings that relate to each specific work, including benches that are placed in locations that force people to watch the films from uncomfortable positions.

© Jason Mandella

Aernout Mik, TRAINING GROUND, 2006, two-channel video installation, courtesy the artist, carlier | gebauer, Berlin and the Project, © 2009 Aernout Mik


Museum of Modern Art

West 54th St. between Fifth & Sixth Aves.

Through July 27 (closed Tuesdays; Fridays free from 4:00 to 8:00)

Admission: $20 (includes same-day film screening)



Combining film, architecture, and sculpture, Dutch artist Aernout Mik creates carefully constructed viewing environments where he screens multiple-channel films that question the notion of reality. MoMA is featuring eight of his works, spread throughout the museum, resulting in a sort of treasure hunt to find them all. (MoMA does supply a free map.) Start on the sixth floor with 1996’s FLUFF (also shown in two other areas), right near the bathrooms; the one-channel short depicts a group of men walking across a room as a strange substance is thrown at them from off-screen, sometimes sticking to their body or clothing. Meanwhile, a head rests on a table. It’s all extremely funny and utterly absurd; try not to throw things at passersby on their way to or from the rest rooms. Four of the films can be found on the second floor, including SCHOOLYARD (2009), a two-screen MoMA commission shown just outside the photography galleries. The two screens show the same action filmed from different angles as schoolkids pounce on a car, security staff ready to intervene. As with all of Mik’s work, viewers will never know whether any of this mini-revolution is factual, either based on an actual incident or the incident itself — or a complete fabrication. The six-channel VACUUM ROOM (2005) and two-channel TRAINING GROUND (2006) are shown in the same room, visible from both the front and back of the installations. The former is a tour-de-force as protesters lie down on the floor of what appears to be a parliamentary hearing; the six screens are set in an oval environment that viewers can enter and join in the maelstrom. On the ground floor, two of the films can be seen without having to pay an entry fee: The single-channel, widescreen OSMOSIS AND EXCESS (2005) hangs suspended from the ceiling, depicting consumerism run amok, while the single-channel MIDDLEMEN (2001) is projected in a small, curved nook, showing a group of exhausted and devastated men at the end of a crazy day on the trading floor. In this era of reality shows gone wild, Mik’s intentionally confusing "narratives" are marvelously confusing and thoroughly entertaining.

Also at MoMA / P.S.1


Kenneth Anger’s oeuvre is on view in appropriate setting at P.S.1


P.S.1 Contemporary Art Center / MoMA

22-25 Jackson Ave. at 46th Ave., Long Island City

Thursday — Monday 12 noon — 6:00 pm through September 14

Suggested donation: $5 (free with MoMA admission ticket within thirty days of purchase)



A different kind of architectural film installation is on view at MoMA’s sister institution, P.S. 1 in Queens. In the second-floor Kunsthalle, eight works by experimental filmmaker Kenneth Anger are distributed throughout an immersive environment inspired by Anger’s colorful, frenetic sets. While two of the films are screened in private areas separated by 1960s-era partitions, several more are on rotation in the space’s main area, which has been bathed in a deep red. Anger, the author of the extremely successful HOLLYWOOD BABYLON books, fills his bizarre, low-budget, homoerotic tales with beautiful young men, dreamlike imagery, and hard-to-follow narratives. While many consider Anger, who is now in his early eighties, a highly influential genius, others find his work far more amateurish and overrated. (We’re somewhere in the middle.) Be ready to spend a few hours checking out FIREWORKS (1947), INAUGURATION OF THE PLEASURE DOME (1954-66), SCORPIO RISING (1963), INVOCATION OF MY DEMON BROTHER (1969), and LUCIFER RISING (1970-81), films that are rarely shown in public and never on cable. We are particularly fond of his shorter works, including the fashion-conscious PUCE MOMENT (1949), the gothic EAUX D’ARTIFICE (1953), and the delicious KUSTOM KAR KOMMANDOS (1964-65), which are looped on small monitors in the main space.

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Cultural Celebration of the Week

Rudd Jonkers

Multimedia reimagining of RICHARD III in Arabic is part of new fest


Asia Society and Museum, 725 Park Ave. at 70th St., 212-517-ASIA

BAM Harvey Theater, 651 Fulton St. between Ashland Pl. & Rockwell Pl., 718-636-4100

BAM Howard Gilman Opera House, BAM Rose Cinemas, BAMcafé, 30 Lafayette Ave. between Ashland Pl. & St. Felix St., 718-636-4100

June 5-14




The Asia Society and BAM have joined forces for the inaugural Muslim Voices: Arts & Ideas festival, ten days of music, dance, film, theater, and discussion about traditional and contemporary Muslim culture in a changing world, featuring artists from Asia, Africa, and the Middle East. The series features such internationally renowned figures as Senegalese musician and activist Youssou N’Dour and Iranian-American filmmaker Shirin Neshat in addition to a wide-ranging collection of artists beloved in their native countries of Morocco, Pakistan, India, Kuwait, Indonesia, Tunisia, Syria, Turkey, Egypt, and Afghanistan. One of the highlights will be the free two-day souk open-air market held outside BAM on June 6-7.

Friday, June 5 Youssou N’Dour, preceded by commissioned suite composed by Amir El Saffar and performed by Marina Alam, Dena El Saffar, Dhafer Tawil, and others, BAM Howard Gilman Opera House, $25-$55, 8:00

Friday, June 5


Sunday, June 14 New York Masjid: The Mosques of New York City, photography exhibition, Natman Room, BAM Howard Gilman Opera House, free, 12 noon

Saturday, June 6


Sunday, June 7 Souk, traditional open-air market, BAM, Lafayette Ave. & Ashland Pl., free, 12 noon

Saturday, June 6 Sufi Music Ensembles, with the Aissawa Ensemble from Fes, Morocco, and the Al Taybah Ensemble from Tunisia and France BAM Harvey Theater, $20-$35, 8:00

Sunday, June 7


Monday, June 8 Dastangoi: The Adventures of Amir Hamza, with Naseeruddin Shah, Daanish Hussain, and Mahmood Farooqi, Asia Society Lila Acheson Wallace Auditorium, $30, 7:30

Monday, June 8 MAKING OF (AKHER FILM) (Nouri Bouzid, 2006), BAM Rose Cinemas, $11, 4:30, 6:50, 9:15

Monday, June 8 Shirin Neshat: The House Is Black, rare screening of THE HOUSE IS BLACK (Forough Farrokhzad, 1962), presented by Shirin Neshat, BAM Rose Cinemas, $10, 7:00

Tuesday, June 9 LOVE FOR SHARE (BERBAGI SUAMI) (Nia Dinata, 2006), BAM Rose Cinemas, $11, 4:30, 6:50, 9:15

Tuesday, June 9 Reza Aslan in Conversation with Vishakha Desai, Asia Society Lila Acheson Wallace Auditorium, $15, 6:30

Tuesday, June 9


Friday, June 12 RICHARD III: AN ARAB TRAGEDY, directed by Sulayman Al-Bassam, BAM Harvey Theater, $25-$45, 7:30

Tuesday, June 9


Sunday, September 13 Sight Unseen: Video from Afghanistan and Iran, Asia Society Museum (free Friday, June 5, after 6:00)

Wednesday, June 10 GRAND VOYAGE (Ismael Ferroukhi, 2004), BAM Rose Cinemas, $11, 4:30, 6:50, 9:15

Wednesday, June 10 JOURNEY TO MECCA: IN THE FOOTSTEPS OF IBN BATTUTA (Bruce Neibaur, 2009), IMAX screening, narrated by Ben Kingsley, American Museum of Natural History LeFrak Theater, $13.50, 7:00

Wednesday, June 10 Chaikhana/Tea House, Asia Society Rose Conference Hall, eighth floor, $15, 7:30

Thursday, June 11 LAND FOR A STRANGER (TURAB AL-GHURABA) (Samir Zikra, 1998), BAM Rose Cinemas, $11, 7:00

Thursday, June 11


Friday, June 12 The Divas of the Maqam, with vocalists Nassima Chabane of Algeria and Kamilya Jubran of Palestine, accompanied by a pan-Arab ensemble, Asia Society Lila Acheson Wallace Auditorium, $35, 7:30

LAND FOR A STRANGER examines the life of Abdel-Rahman al-Kawakibi

Thursday, June 11


Friday, June 12 Parissa: An Evening of Persian Classical Music, with Parissa (singer), Tar (traditional plucked lute), and Daf (frame drum), playing songs based on poems by Rumi and Hafez, Asia Society Lila Acheson Wallace Auditorium, $25-$35, (preceded by 6:00 pre-performance lecture free for ticket holders), 7:30

Friday, June 12 TAKVA — A MAN’S FEAR OF GOD (Ozer Kiziltan, 2006), BAM Rose Cinemas, $11, 2:00, 6:50

Friday, June 12 SATIN ROUGE (Raja Amari, 2002), BAM Rose Cinemas, $11, 4:30, 9:15

Friday, June 12 zerobridge opens for Brahim Fribgane and Adam Rudolf, BAMcafé, free, 9:30

Saturday, June 13 HEART OF JENIN (DAS HERZ VON JENIN) (Leon Geller & Marcus Vetter, 2008), BAM Rose Cinemas, $11, 3:00, 9:00

Saturday, June 13 LEILA (Darius Mehrjui, 1996), BAM Rose Cinemas, $11, 6:00

Saturday, June 13 Qawwali Gospel Creation, with Craig Adams and the Voices of New Orleans and Pakistani singer Faiz Ali Faiz and his Qawwali Ensemble, BAM Harvey Theater, $20-$35, 8:00

Saturday, June 13 Adam Matta with vocalists Dr. Fawzia Afzal-Khan, Nihan Devecioglu, and Remi Kanazi, cellist Noah Hoffel, guitarist Eyal Maoz, and Kenny Muhammad the Human Orchestra, BAMcafé, free, 9:30

Saturday, June 13, 7:30


Sunday, June 14, 3:00 Sardono Dance Theater of Indonesia: Diponegoro, Asia Society Lila Acheson Wallace Auditorium, $25-$35

Sunday, June 14 DESTINY (AL-MASSIR) (Youssef Chahine, 1997), BAM Rose Cinemas, $11, 2:00, 8:00

Sunday, June 14 THE FRONTIER GANDHI: BADSHAH KHAN, A TORCH FOR PEACE (T. C. McLuhan, 2008), BAM Rose Cinemas, $11, 5:00

In the Thematic Neighborhood

Brooklyn Qawwali Party will play two sets at Islam-inspired free event


Brooklyn Museum of Art

200 Eastern Parkway

Free after 5:00 (*requires advance free tickets available an hour or two before showtime)

1st fans membership: $20 per year



While Muslim culture is spread out over ten days in multiple locations for the Muslim Voices Festival, the Brooklyn Museum will be featuring Islamic art, music, dance, film, discussions, and more at their monthly First Saturdays gathering, all for free, although some events do require advance ticketing a few hours before showtime.

Saturday, June 6 Music: Brooklyn Qawwali Party, the Rubin Pavilion, first floor, 5:00 — 7:00

* Saturday, June 6 Film and Performance: A NAMED HER ANGEL (Nefin Dinc, 2006), Iris and B. Gerald Cantor Auditorium, third floor, 5:30, followed by a whirling dance demonstration in the Beaux-Arts Court

* Saturday, June 6 Artist Talk: Seher Shah, whose work is in the exhibition "21: Selections of Contemporary Art from the Brooklyn Museum," Elizabeth A. Sackler Center for Feminist Art, fourth floor, 6:00

* Saturday, June 6 Hands-On Art: participants will make a lantern inspired by the exhibition "Light of the Sufis: The Mystical Art of Islam," Education Division, first floor, 6:30-8:30

* Saturday, June 6 Film: I LOVE HIP HOP IN MOROCCO (Joshua Asen & Jennifer Needleman, 2007), followed by a Q&A with Asen, Iris and B. Gerald Cantor Auditorium, third floor, 6:30

Saturday, June 6 Young Voices Gallery Talk, Islamic Art Gallery, second floor, 7:00

* Saturday, June 6 Curator Talk: "Light of the Sufis: The Mystical Art of Islam," Islamic Art Gallery, second floor, 8:00

Saturday, June 6 Book Club: MY NAME IS RED by Orhan Pamuk, moderated by Sibel Erol, Islamic Gallery, second floor, 9:00

Saturday, June 6 Dance Party: GlobeSonic Sound System DJ Fabian Alsultany and Electric Lila DJ Pepe, museum parking lot, 9:00 — 11:00

Saturday, June 6 Music: Brooklyn Qawwali Party, Rubin Pavilion, first floor, 9:30

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Film Festival of the Week

Brigitte Bardot romps with Michel Piccoli in CONTEMPT


French Institute Alliance Française

Florence Gould Hall

55 East 59th St. between Park & Madison Aves.

Tuesdays June 2 through July 28



For more than fifty years, French actor Michel Piccoli has been a star. His output in the 1960s and 1970s alone was simply extraordinary, appearing in more than thirty films, including such diverse works as Jacques Demy’s LES DEMOISELLES DE ROCHEFORT, Alain Resnais’s THE WAR IS OVER, Alfred Hitchcock’s TOPAZ, Mario Bava’s DIABOLIK, Marco Ferreri’s LA GRANDE BOUFFE, René Clément’s IS PARIS BURNING? and Luis Buñuel’s DIARY OF A CHAMBERMAID, THE PHANTOM OF LIBERTY, THE DISCREET CHARM OF THE BOURGEOISIE, and THAT OBSCURE OBJECT OF DESIRE in addition to films by Costa-Gavras, Peter Ustinov, Roger Vadim, Henri-George Clouzot, Claude Chabrol, and Jean-Pierre Melville. It is a testament to his success that none of those films are part of this terrific retrospective at FIAF, featuring nine fabulous films, ranging from Jean-Luc Godard’s 1963 masterpiece, CONTEMPT, to Manoel de Oliveira’s 2001 autobiographical I’M GOING HOME, when the Portuguese master — who’s still writing and directing films -- was in his early nineties. There’s also Louis Malle’s MAY FOOLS, Agnès Varda’s THE CREATURES, Claude Sautet’s THE THINGS OF LIFE, and Buñuel’s BELLE DE JOUR. This series is a fine tribute to one of France’s greatest leading men.

Tuesday, June 2 CONTEMPT (LE MÉPRIS) (Jean-Luc Godard, 1963), 12:30, 4:00, 7:30

Tuesday, June 9 THE PRUDE (LA PURITAINE) (Jacques Douillon, 1986), 12:30, 4:00, 7:30

Tuesday, June 16 MAY FOOLS (MILOU EN MAI) (Louis Malle, 1990), 12:30, 4:00, 7:30

Tuesday, June 23 I’M GOING HOME (JE RENTRE À LA MAISON) (Manoel de Oliveira, 2001), 12:30, 4:00, 7:30

Tuesday, June 30 THE CREATURES (LES CRÉATURES) (Agnès Varda, 1966), 12:30, 4:00, 7:30

Tuesday, July 7 BELLE DE JOUR (Luis Buñuel, 1967), 12:30, 4:00, 7:30

BELLE DE JOUR (Luis Bunuel, 1967)

Catherine Deneuve stars in this tempting tale of a bored housewife who finds the excitement she’s missing by becoming a prostitute by day, while her husband (Jean Sorel) is off at work. When a couple of men start falling for her, her life turns more complicated than she’s ever imagined. Director Luis Buñuel won the Golden Lion at the Venice Film Festival for this erotically charged story that features a shocking ending. (Deneuve and costar Michel Piccoli reunited nearly forty years later in Manoel de Oliveira’s misguided sequel, BELLE TOUJOURS.)

Tuesday, July 14 THE THINGS OF LIFE (LES CHOSES DE LA VIE) (Claude Sautet, 1970), 12:30, 4:00, 7:30

Tuesday, July 21 THE WOMAN IN BLUE (LA FEMME EN BLEU) (Michel Deville, 1973), 12:30, 4:00, 7:30

Tuesday, July 28 EVERYTHING’S FINE, WE’RE LEAVING (TOUT VA BIEN, ON S’EN VA) (Claude Mouriéras, 2000), 12:30, 4:00, 7:30

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Riff’s Rants & Raves: Film

Yojiro Takita’s DEPARTURES examines man with very unusual job

DEPARTURES (Yojiro Takita, 2008)

Opens Friday, May 29


After the orchestra in which he plays cello is dissolved, Daigo Kobayashi (Masahiro Motoki) and his wife, Mika (Ryoko Hirosue) leave Tokyo and head back to his hometown in Yamagata. Seeing a classified ad in the local paper listing a job in “departures,” Daigo schedules an interview, thinking it is a travel agent position. But as it turns out, the boss, Sasaki (Tsutomu Yamazaki), claims it was a typo — it should have read “the departed” — and immediately hires Daigo as his assistant encoffinor. Daigo quickly learns that he and Sasaki attend to the newly dead, picking them up for funeral directors and then preparing the bodies, in front of grieving friends and family, for the coffins and cremation through an elaborate, detailed ceremony. Daigo takes the job out of financial desperation — Sasaki throws money at him to come on board — but doesn’t tell anyone, including Mika, what he is doing, since people who work in businesses involving corpses are shunned in Japan, considered dirty. But as Daigo grows to appreciate the importance of what Sasaki does, everything he has built threatens to fall apart when his secret starts getting out.


Masahiro Motoki and Yojiro Takita present DEPARTURES in
special Chelsea screening as part of the Nippon Eiga Series,
sponsored by New York-Tokyo

Winner of the 2008 Oscar for Best Foreign Language Film (As well as ten Japan Academy Prizes), DEPARTURES is a moving portrait of life and death, told beautifully by director Yojiro Takita (WHENT THE LAST SWORD IS DRAWN, ONMYOJI) and screenwriter Kundo Koyama. Motoki, who had the original idea for the film, gives a wonderfully subtle performance as a Daigo, while Yamazaki is a riot as the stern boss with a sly sense of humor. Despite an embarrassingly unnecessary montage scene and sappy music by Joe Hisaishi (who’s never met an emotion he couldn’t overexploit), DEPARTURES is a moving portrait of a man searching for his place in the world — and meeting personal and professional obstacles when he thinks he might have found it.

Sam Raimi returns to horror with DRAG ME TO HELL

DRAG ME TO HELL (Sam Raimi, 2009)

Opens Friday, May 29


Michigan-born writer/director/producer Sam Raimi makes a welcome return to the horror genre with DRAG ME TO HELL, his first thriller since 2000’s THE GIFT and only his second legitimate scarefest since 1987’s EVIL DEAD II. (In the interim, he has made such films as A SIMPLE PLAN, THE QUICK AND THE DEAD, FOR LOVE OF THE GAME, ARMY OF DARKNESS, DARKMAN, and the SPIDER-MAN trilogy.) Battling for a promotion, loan officer Christine Brown (Alison Lohman) decides not to give old, decrepit Mrs. Ganush (Lorna Raver) a third extension on her mortgage. But the vile-looking woman won’t give up that easy, getting into a frightening physical fight with Christine that ends when the craggy old bat casts a wicked spell on her. Christine tries to return to her safe, conventional life with her boyfriend, Clay Dalton (Justin “I’m a Mac” Long), but she is haunted by an evil creature that just might drag her to hell in three days if she can’t find a way to stop it. Written by Raimi and his brother Ivan, DRAG ME TO HELL is a potent mix of horror and humor, ire and irony, always ready with a funny joke or two, its tongue firmly imbedded in its cheek — when it’s not rolling out of Mrs. Ganush’s absolutely disgusting mouth.

Janus Films

Kurosawa classic gets the restoration treatment at Film Forum

RASHOMON (Akira Kurosawa, 1950)

Film Forum

209 West Houston St. between Sixth & Seventh Aves.

May 29 - June 11



One of the most influential films of all time, Akira Kurosawa’s RASHOMON will be screening for two weeks at Film Forum in a new 35mm restoration. The 1950 masterpiece stars Toshiro Mifune as a bandit accused of the brutal rape of a samurai’s wife (Machiko Kyo) and the murder of her husband (Masayuki Mori). However, four eyewitnesses tell a tribunal four different stories, each told in flashback as if the truth, forcing the characters — and the audience — to question the reality of what they see and experience. Kurosawa veteran and twi-ny fave Takashi Shimura — the Japanese Ward Bond — plays a local woodcutter, with Minoru Chiaka as the priest. The mesmerizing work, which won an Oscar for Best Foreign Language Film, is beautifully shot by Kazuo Miyagawa; RASHOMON is nothing short of unforgettable. (We hesitate to mention — but will anyway — that the film was remade in 1964 as the awful OUTRAGE, starring Paul Newman, Edward G. Robinson, Claire Bloom, Laurence Harvey, and William Shatner.)

Oscilloscope Laboratories

A young monk goes on a search of discovery in UNMISTAKEN CHILD

UNMISTAKEN CHILD (Nati Baratz, 2008)

Film Forum

209 West Houston St. between Sixth & Seventh Aves.

Opens Wednesday, June 3



When Tibetan master Geshe Lama Konghog passes away, his longtime disciple, Tenzin Zopa, is charged with the task of finding his reincarnation, sending the devout young man on a four-year search of personal discovery. After twenty-one years with Lama Konghog, Tenzin needs to redefine his purpose now that his master, who once spent twenty-six years in meditative isolation in a cave, has departed. Instructed what to look for in terms of demeanor and action, Tenzin sets out on the journey with Israeli filmmaker Nati Baratz as he meets with small communities in remote sections of Nepal and Tibet, inquiring whether any recently born boys display specific characteristics that could mean they are the reincarnation of Lama Konghog. His questions create a compelling dichotomy; while parents would be proud that their son might be so blessed as to be the reincarnation of a revered lama, it would also mean that the child would be taken away from them and raised in a monastery. Featuring gorgeous cinematography, UNMISTAKEN CHILD is a fascinating investigation of identity, offering a rare look into a remarkable part of Tibetan culture and faith. Whether you believe in reincarnation or not, you will be rooting for Tenzin Zopa to find his master’s reincarnation before times runs out.

Factory faces the end in fascinating mix of fact and fiction

24 CITY (Jia Zhang-ke, 2008)

IFC Center

323 Sixth Ave. at West Third St.

Opens Friday, June 5




With the imminent closing of a once-secret munitions plant known as Factory 420 in Chengdu, eight workers relate their unique stories in another fascinating look at capitalism in a changing China by writer-director Jia Zhang-ke, who has previously investigated the transformations in his native country in such excellent works as PLATFORM, UNKNOWN PLEASURES, THE WORLD, USELESS, and STILL LIFE. While five of the tales are told by actual male workers in their own words, three are fictional stories recited by female actors, including Joan Chen as Little Flower, Lv Liping as Hao Dali, and Jia regular Zhao Tao as Su Na. Jia sees the factory, which is being torn down to make way for a luxury apartment complex called 24 City, as a symbol of contemporary China, as the past is ripped away in favor of capitalist-based technological modernization and the celebration of wealth. By intermingling fact and fiction, Jia creates a fascinating pseudo-documentary that also subtly touches upon women’s changing role in Chinese industry and society.

In Theaters Now

James and Em are looking for love in all the wrong places

ADVENTURELAND (Greg Mottola, 2009)

AMC Loews Village VII

Third Ave. at Eleventh St.


When we were kids, it was always a treat when our parents packed us in the car and took us to Adventureland, a small amusement park in Farmingdale, Long Island. It wasn’t quite the same treat for writer-director Greg Mottola, who documents one summer he spent working as a carny there in the sweet coming-of-age comedy ADVENTURELAND. Jesse Eisenberg stars as Mottola’s alter ego, James Brennan, a college grad in 1987 who is planning on traveling through Europe before starting grad school at Columbia — until his parents take a serious financial hit, forcing him to spend the summer working at the local amusement park in Pittsburgh called Adventureland. (Mottola had wanted to shoot the film in the actual Long Island location but found that the current state of Adventureland was too upscale compared to the one he remembers, so he found a more suitable cinematic park.) James is a hyperintellectual virgin who is waiting for true love, and he thinks he might have found it in fellow carny Em Lewin (Kristen Stewart). However, he doesn’t know that Em is also a booty call for the older Mike Connell (Ryan Reynolds), the hot maintenance man whose legendary claim to fame is that he once jammed with Lou Reed. Meanwhile, the amusement park’s hot-to-trot Lisa P. (Margarita Levieva) has returned, and she might be considering trying out a nice guy like James instead of her usual tough dudes.

Bill Hader and Kristen Wiig run things at low-rent amusement park

ADVENTURELAND is a very funny, emotionally honest look at growing up faster than one imagined, filled with believable characters and situations in a genre that is often wrought with hyperbole. (Mottola is another member of Judd Apatow’s inner circle, having directed episodes of the underrated UNDECLARED and directed and cowrote, with Seth Rogen, the overrated SUPERBAD; prior to that, he wrote and directed the overrated 1999 indie hit THE DAYTRIPPERS, which stars Liev Schreiber, Parker Posey, and Stanley Tucci.) Eisenberg (THE SQUID AND THE WHALE) and Stewart (INTO THE WILD) are magnetic together, conveying their parts with heartfelt emotion; although Eisenberg is seven years older than Stewart in real life — she was born in 1990, after the film takes place — Stewart displays an intelligence beyond her years. The excellent supporting cast features SNL’s Bill Hader and Kristen Wiig as the park’s crazy owners; FREAKS & GEEKS’ Martin Starr as James’s best friend, the Russian-lit-obsessed, pipe-smoking Joel; and Matt Bush as Frigo, who never misses a chance to punch James in the nuts. Mottola sets his compelling story to an awesome soundtrack that includes killer tunes by the Replacements, Husker Du, Big Star, the Cure, Judas Priest, and plenty of Lou Reed and the Velvet Underground (as well as a Foreigner tribute band and Falco’s “Rock Me Amadeus”). ADVENTURELAND could just be the JUNO of 2009.

Toni Servillo is spectacular as Italian political legend Giulio Andreotti


Landmark Sunshine Cinema

143 East Houston St. between First & Second Aves.




For more than fifty years, Giulio Andreotti has been a central figure in the Italian government. As a member of the Christian Democrats, he has served in a variety of ways, including as several ministers (defense, interior, foreign affairs, budget, treasury) as well as prime minister seven times. During those years, he has been linked to the Mafia, the Vatican, and the P2 Lodge — in addition to numerous bankers, politicians, judges, and journalists who have ended up murdered or committed suicide. Paolo Sorrentino’s fourth film (following THE FAMILY FRIEND, THE CONSEQUENCES OF LOVE, and ONE MAN UP) is a stirring, highly stylized look at a remarkable public figure who always manages to survive despite all the controversy and conspiracy associated with him; in fact, in 1991, Andreotti was named Senator for Life. Toni Servillo is breathtaking as Andreotti, a small, crouched man — somewhat resembling Phil Hartman playing Henry Kissinger on Saturday Night Live — who has been called such nicknames as the Sphinx, the Hunchback, Beelzebub, and il Divo.

This nearly cartoonish-looking character surrounded himself with an army of cohorts worthy of a classic heist film, a different kind of Italian Rat Pack, including Paolo Cirino “Minister” Pomicino (Carlo Buccirosso), Franco “Lemon” Evangelisti (Flavio Bucci), Giuseppe “il Ciarra” Ciarrapico (Aldo Ralli), Vittorio “the Shark” Sbardella (Massimo Popolizio), Salvo “His Excellency” Lima (Giorgio Colangeli), and Cardinal Fiorenzo “His Holiness” Angelini (Achille Brugnini). Sorrentino depicts Andreotti as a soft-spoken, private man who speaks in puzzling proverbs “We learn from the Gospel that when they asked Jesus what truth was, he did not reply”), never raises his fist or voice in anger, and hangs in the background at lavish parties. Yet an aura of supreme power glows like a halo around him, casting fear in its shadows. IL DIVO, which won awards at both Venice and Cannes and is powered by a magnificent score by Teho Teardo (and such pop songs as Cassius’s “Toop Toop” and Trio’s “Da Da Da”), is an awe-inspiring achievement that will leave audience’s mouths hanging open in wonder and amazement.

Spock and Kirk go back to the beginning in newest STAR TREK flick

STAR TREK (J. J. Abrams, 2009)


Just as Kirk has his Khan, Spock gets his Nero in J. J. Abrams’s immensely entertaining time-traveling STAR TREK movie. Abrams (LOST) goes back to the very beginning, with the tumultuous birth of one James Tiberius Kirk (Chris Pine), whose father was a legendary member of Star Fleet. Soon he winds up aboard the U.S.S. Enterprise, surrounded by a crew that includes a logical Vulcan named Spock (Zachary Quinto); Uhura (Zoe Saldana), a hot language specialist; Leonard "Bones" McCoy (Karl Urban), a goofy doctor; seventeen-year-old helmsman Pavel Chekov (Anton Yelchin); engineer extraordinaire Montgomery Scott (Simon Pegg); and rookie pilot and swordsman Hikaru Sulu (John Cho). In this sort-of Star Trek Babies tale, the young cadets are suddenly thrust into action with Captain Pike (Bruce Greenwood), on a mission that involves evil villain Nero (Eric Bana), a rogue Romulan with an ax to grind. STAR TREK fans will love all the little homages to the series and the previous films, with both obvious and obscure references every step of the way as we learn how this famous crew first met one another and developed their extremely familiar relationships.

Russell Crowe is on the run in STATE OF PLAY

STATE OF PLAY (Kevin Macdonald, 2009)

AMC Loews Village VII

Third Ave. at Eleventh St.


STATE OF PLAY is a gripping if overwrought political thriller that wants to be the ALL THE PRESIDENT’S MEN of the new millennium — but doesn’t come close. Russell Crowe stars as Cal McAffrey, an old-fashioned, hard-edged reporter for the fictitious Washington Globe who is suddenly partnered with the paper’s young, inexperienced blogger, Della Frye (Rachel McAdams), when two stories slowly tie together, one involving a multiple shooting and the other the death of a woman who was having an affair with Congressman Stephen Collins (Ben Affleck). Collins, who is heading an investigation into a Blackwater-type militaristic organization, was a former roommate of McAffrey’s, who seems to have had a somewhat sketchy past with the representative’s wife (Robin Wright Penn). Amid possible corporate conspiracy, sexual intrigue, and the modernization of newspaper technology (for example, Frye seems to never have a pen handy, leading McAffrey to question her skills as a journalist since merely typing gossip and innuendo directly onto a blog, without going into the street and compiling notes, sources, and facts, does not a real reporter make), McAffrey is forced into questioning his loyalties and responsibilities, both personal and professional. Director Kevin Macdonald (TOUCHING THE VOID, THE LAST KING OF SCOTLAND), who helmed the six-part BBC television drama on which the film is based, originally had Brad Pitt lined up for the American version, but the recent Oscar nominee pulled out because of script changes. While there’s much to admire in STATE OF PLAY — the strong cast also includes Helen Mirren, Jason Bateman, and Jeff Daniels — it’s at least twenty minutes too long and too often tries to be too clever for its own good.

Juliette Binoche stars in Olivier Assayas’s latest

SUMMER HOURS (L’HEURE D’ÉTÉ) (Olivier Assayas, 2008)

IFC Center

323 Sixth Ave. at West Third St.


Lincoln Plaza Cinemas

1886 Broadway between 62nd & 63rd Sts.





At their annual family gathering, Frédéric (Charles Berling), Adrienne (Juliette Binoche), and Jérémie (Jérémie Renier) are celebrating their mother’s seventy-fifth birthday. But Hélène (Edith Scob) does not care about the present; instead, she is more concerned with preserving the past and preparing for the future. She pulls aside her oldest, Frédéric (Assayas’s on-screen alter ego), to tell him what to do with her belongings after she’s gone, but he is not ready to think about that. Her house is more like a museum, filled with valuable works of art and furniture that were collected by her uncle, a famous painter who died thirty years before. Frédéric would prefer to keep the house intact, donating a few items to the Musee d’Orsay and saving the rest for the next generation, but Adrienne and Jérémie don’t necessarily feel the same way, and Frédéric’s and Jérémie’s kids fail to see any value in the pieces, including two oil paintings by Camille Corot, begrudgingly noting that they’re from a different era. While Frédéric, a professor who has written a controversial book about the state of the economy, attaches personal memories to each object, Adrienne, a successful designer in New York, is more interested in the functionality of things, and Jérémie, who manages a company that profits from cheap labor in China, sees only monetary value. As the three siblings discuss what to do with their mother’s estate, relationships come into focus, and a long-held secret emerges.

Written and directed by Olivier Assayas (LES DESTINÉES SENTIMENTALES, DEMONLOVER, IRMA VEP), SUMMER HOURS, which was selected for the 2008 New York Film Festival, is a thoughtful, intelligent slice-of-life story that avoids overbearing cliches and melodramatic moments; there are no blow-ups or overemotional scenes. Instead, the family deals with its situation directly and matter-of-factly, a sort of French CHERRY ORCHARD for the twenty-first century. However, Assayas does include far too many red herrings, little flourishes of cinematic language that seem to set something up that never comes full circle. The project was initiated by the Musee d’Orsay, which had commissioned a group of international directors to make short films related to the institution’s holdings. Assayas’s friend and colleague Hou Hsiao Hsien ended up making the full-length FLIGHT OF THE RED BALLOON, which also starred Binoche. Although the project later fell apart, Assayas combined the idea with the worsening condition of his mother, resulting in a bittersweet and very personal work.

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Riff’s Rants & Raves: Live Music

Au Revoir Simone will celebrate CD release with hometown show in Brooklyn


Music Hall of Williamsburg

66 North Sixth St.

Friday, May 29, $15, 9:00


We sincerely apologize for the cliché — honestly, we do — but it really is about time that you say hello to Brooklyn’s own Au Revoir Simone. In 2007, Heather D’Angelo, Erika Foster, and Annie Hart delighted us with THE BIRD OF MUSIC, but their follow-up, the brand-new, stripped-down STILL NIGHT, STILL LIGHT (Our Secret Record Company, May 19, 2009), takes them to the next level. Through twelve intimate songs, the three keyboardists sing about love and loss, backed primarily by a drum machine (and some live drumming by Ben McConnell and Otto Hauser on a few songs). "I’m moving on / I hope you’re coming with me / ’cause I’m not strong / without you," they sing on the gently pulsating "Shadows," which beats like an aching heart. On the stark "The Last One," they declare, "I’m the one to forget / the one you won’t regret / So let me go." And as clear as "Take Me as I Am" and the mostly instrumental "Only You Can Make You Happy" are, "Trace a Line" is more mysterious in sound and lyrics as they sing, "We’re making room for alibis / when something tells me telling lies / is only ever trying to be true." STILL NIGHT, STILL LIGHT is a gorgeous, infectious record, another beautiful collection of heartfelt songs by one of Brooklyn’s best minimalist groups. Au Revoir Simone will be playing the Music Hall of Williamsburg on May 29, with the Antlers and Lights.


Mr. Scruff will take it outside to show off his Sunday best


The Yard

400 Carroll St. between Bond & Nevins Sts.

Sundays from 3:00 — 9:00 through September 6

Sunday, May 31, $10, 3:00


Mr. Scruff will be bringing his immense DJ skills to the Yard on May 31 as part of the Sunday Best series, which is hosted by resident DJs Eamon Harkin, Justin Carter, and Doug Singer. Last October, the self-described "DJ, Producer, Cartoonist & Tea Drinker" released the digital-download-only NINJA TUNA on his Ninja Tune label, his first full-length album in six years, featuring such tunes as "Test the Sound," "Hairy Bumpercress," and "Give Up to Get" and special guests Alice Russell, Roots Manuva, Danny Breaks, Andrea Triana, and Pete Simpson. (Some of the songs are also available as twelve-inch vinyl singles.) We last caught Mr. Scruff at Club Soda during the 2007 Montreal Jazz Festival, where he rocked the house with his pulsating beats and playful video projections; this is a rare chance to see this Manchester lad in New York City, so we urge you not to miss it. And there’s barbecue too! (On June 7, Luke Solomon will be Sunday Best’s special guest. And on June 1, Mr. Scruff will be playing all night long at the Deep Space party at Cielo at 18 Little West Twelfth St.)

Love Is All will try to keep New Yorkers up all night at music hall


Music Hall of Williamsburg

66 North Sixth St.

Friday, June 5, $13-$15, 9:00



Just back from a jaunt through Europe, including stops in Germany, Italy, France, and England, Sweden’s Love Is All returns to New York for a show at the Music Hall of Williamsburg, in support of one of 2008’s best albums, A HUNDRED THINGS KEEP ME UP AT NIGHT. The English-language record is a pure punk-pop treasure, featuring eleven gems, highlighted by the hard-driving “New Beginnings,” the groovy “Last Choice,” and the frantic, propulsive, overwhelmingly awesome “Wishing Well,” which has an ’80s hook to die for. “Movie Romance” features cool harmonies on its lilting chorus; keyboardist and lead singer Josephine Olausson gets all cutesy on “A More Uncertain Future,” her sweet duet with guitarist Nicholaus Sparding; “Rumours” is punctuated by Johan Arrias’s sax bursts; and Markus Gorsch gets to blast away on the drums on “Big Bangs, Black Holes, Meteorites.” On “Sea Sick,” Olausson declares, “I’m bored to death with all this shit!” But there’s no getting bored with this great album. The band will be headlining at the Music Hall of Williamsburg on June 5; they might even throw in a song or two from their recent recording of classic Swedish pop songs, done when they had “some time to kill.”


Jewish rapper Matisyahu will be taking it outdoors for benefit


Rumsey Playfield

Central Park (enter at Fifth Ave. & 69th St.)

Tickets: $25-$55



In order to be able to continue bringing New York City free summer music in Rumsey Playfield in Central Park, the CityParks Foundation holds a handful of benefit concerts every season, ranging in price this year from $25 to $55. When the weather’s good, Rumsey Playfield is a great place to see a show. This year’s benefit concerts begin on June 5 with a sold-out performance by TV on the Radio and Dirty Projectors, but tickets are still available for the Indigo Girls and Matt Nathanson on June 16, Explosions in the Sky and Constantines on June 30, and Matisyahu and Umphrey’s McGee on July 9.

Friday, June 5 Sold out: TV on the Radio and Dirty Projectors, 6:30

Tuesday, June 16 Indigo Girls and Matt Nathanson, $37.50, 6:00

Thursday, June 25 Sold out: 311, Ziggy Marley, and the Expendables, $45-$55, 6:00

Tuesday, June 30 Explosions in the Sky and Constantines, $25, 6:30

Thursday, July 9 Matisyahu and Umphrey’s McGee, $35, 6:30

Diamond Center will celebrate upcoming
CD release with three area shows


Saturday, June 6, Lit Lounge, 93 Second Ave., $6, 8:30

Sunday, June 7, Market Hotel, 1142 Myrtle Ave. at Broadway, 8:00

Monday, June 8, Monkeytown, 58 North Third St. between Kent & Wythe, $5 plus $10 minimum, 9:30



Hailing from Lubbock, Texas, home of Buddy Holly and Texas Tech University, the Diamond Center arrives in New York City for three shows in celebration of their upcoming sophomore release, the absolutely thrilling MY ONLY COMPANION (available June 9), their follow-up to last year’s CLAWS & FLAWS. Started in Athens in 2007 by self-described "designer / photographer / musician / daydreamer" Brandi Price and Kyle Harris, the group later added drummer Jana Price (Brandi’s sister), forming a powerful trio that makes gorgeous, ethereal music. Citing vegetables as one of their main influences (along with Joe Meek and Phil Spector), the Diamond Center creates a haunting wall of sound filled with psychedelic folk and goth elements. Many of their songs feature cinematic flourishes, with a Western tinge to "Follow, I Won’t" and a Middle Eastern flair anchoring "Dos Fridas." While much of their music floats on darkening clouds, "Nemo" concludes with some fine screeching guitar, and "The Deer Pistol," recorded live, features killer riffs. Guitarist Brandi Price does most of the singing, but Harris takes over on the epic "Bombay Beach," in which grand background voices lift to the skies, and the nearly epic "Cap’n Death," which builds to a furious anti-climax before shifting to an acoustic-based finale in which Harris announces, "You can lie to everyone including yourself / But your ship’s in a bottle up on the shelf / Now just try to stay afloat / till you find someone else’s boat." The Diamond Center , supplemented with additional musicians, will be at the Lit Lounge on June 6 with the Prigs, Señors of Marseille, and Emily Hope Price, at Market Hotel on June 7 with Pepi Ginsberg, Grandchildren, and North Highlands, and at Monkeytown on June 8 with Miwagemini & the Floozies. This is a great chance to see a spectacular new band at some small venues; catch them now so you can say you saw them when.

Mali duo will hit Webster Hall for what should be a hot show


Webster Hall

125 East Eleventh St. between Third & Fourth Aves.

Monday, June 8, $30, 8:00



First heard by twi-ny via an iPod headphone share in 2004, the Malian husband-and-wife team of Amadou and Mariam started attracting attention with the superb DIMANCHE A BAMAKO the following year, produced by world music superstar Manu Chao. Blending the gorgeous guitar picking and strumming of Amadou Bagayokoa and Mariam Doumbia’s intertwined vocals with reggae, hip hop, French pop, African percussion, and Egyptian and Syrian strings, the 2005 disc put them on the world music map. The album featured sharp, witty vocals on such songs as “Sénégal Fast Food” and “Taxi Bamako,” which gleefully incorporates street sounds; often frankly beautiful melodies, as on “Beaux Dimanches”; and lush, smooth rhythms that have enchanted audiences around the globe. They are sure to set their uplifting, dance-making, head-nodding, life-affirming vibe swirling through Webster Hall on June 8, touring behind their latest album, WELCOME TO MALI (Nonesuch, March 2009). We hope to hear such old faves as “Taxi” and “La Réalité” as well as hot tunes from the new release, including the single “Sabali,” which was produced by Blur frontman and Gorillaz leader Damon Albarn; “Africa,” which features Somali rapper K’naan on vocals (some in English); and “Compagnon de la Vie,” which gets funky with horns and keyboards. The album concludes with the eleven-minute-plus party anthem “Sebeke,” but we’re expecting all night at Webster Hall to be a party. Both blind, Amadou and Mariam met at a school for the blind in Mali and married in 1980; world music is the richer for it.

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Riff’s Rants & Raves: Dance

MOMIX’s BOTANICA amazes at the Joyce


Joyce Theater

175 Eighth Ave. at 19th St.

May 12-31, $19-$49



MOMIX’s latest production, BOTANICA, running at the Joyce through May 31, is an eco-friendly multimedia exploration of the four seasons, with the company’s talented cast of ten taking on the roles of flora and fauna, ocean waves, trees, rocks, birds, hornets, a storm, and just about everything else under the sun — well, actually, including the sun. Divided into two dozen sections, BOTANICA features spectacularly imagined illusions, an ingenious use of light and props that creates a visual wonderland that is often as stunning as it is gimmicky. In “New Green (Black Light),” Tsarra Bequtte, Sarah Nachbauer, Cassandra Taylor, and Simona DiTucci, wearing glow-in-the-dark costumes, frantically move their extremities on a pitch-black stage. “New Green” is immediately followed by “Glass Awakening,” in which Nachbauer writhes on a mirrored ramp, her real body morphing with her reflection into giant insectlike shapes. The show continues with Nachbauer in the forefront, arriving onstage topless, riding atop a huge triceratops skeleton in “Old Bones”; her interplay with the dinosaur, which is operated by a nearly impossible-to-see Rob Laqui, evolves into “Ancient Stones,” in which rocks come to life and wrap themselves around dancers’ necks. The first act ends as pairs of dancers form marching centaurs.

There are some fine moments after intermission, including Cassandra Taylor spinning around a gorgeous headdress in “Beaded Web” and Jennifer Chicheportiche, Nachbauer, Taylor, and DiTucci performing the fan-dance-like “Sunflowers,” but it starts feeling a little repetitive, a sort of “How will they top this?” feeling seeping into the “magic.” Dance purists might be disappointed in some sections that evoke BLUE MAN GROUP and MUMMENSCHANZ mixed with Cirque du Soleil, more Vegas than Chelsea, the organic narrative difficult to discern. The evening-length piece begins and ends with “Frozen Land” and “Cold River Runs Again,” respectively, as dancers, a wind machine, and layers of cloth turn into waves pounding across the stage, bringing the seasons full circle. At a postshow Q&A following the May 13 performance, artistic director and MOMIX founder Moses Pendleton, who also cofounded Pilobolus, laid out some of the intended narrative in great detail; unfortunately, much of that was not clearly evident to the audience. Not that it really mattered.

Alex Escalante

John Jasperse work is being revived at DTW


Dance Theater Workshop, Bessie Schonberg Theater

219 West 19th St. between Seventh & Eighth Aves.

May 27-30

Tickets: $10 online, $15 at box office (for all DTW events in February and March)



“Dance-making for me is a social process,” New York-based choreographer John Jasperse said at the post-show talk following the May 27 opening-night performance of BECKY, JODI AND JOHN at Dance Theater Workshop. It doesn’t get much more social than this hour-long piece, which was first presented at DTW in April 2007. Created and performed by Becky Hilton, Jodi Melnick, and Jasperse, the self-reflective work examines friendship, aging, and dance itself among four friends — Chrysa Parkinson occasionally appears on a television monitor, discussing mystique and irrelevancy. Hilton, Melnick, and Jasperse — wearing their first names on their shirts — initially emerge from a horizontal chasm at the back of the stage, slowly revealing their limbs as if rising out of some unseen hell. But there’s nothing scary about the funny, sentimental — but not overly melodramatic — narrative that unfolds, as Hilton reads an e-mail Melnick sent explaining what she will and won’t do; Jasperse walks onto the stage completely naked, carrying a pile of fake bricks that temporarily block his manhood before baring his body and soul; Melnick talks about missing her young son, who is back in Australia, during a midshow “Q&A”; and Parkinson continues staring out from the television, cracking jokes behind her big glasses.

It is as if the audience has been allowed to witness intimate moments among a group of close friends who have no secrets, letting it all hang out onstage. At one point, Jasperse and Melnick perform a beautiful, powerful duet, their lips nearly coming together, their hands catching each other before they fall. They are soon joined by Hilton, with the three friends doing what friends do — offering support, both physical and emotional. A fifth friend, Hahn Rowe, supplies the experimental score from the left front corner of the stage, adding live electronic processing and playing a number of instruments. This delightful reprise of BECKY, JODI AND JOHN continues at DTW through May 30; with online tickets available for a mere ten bucks, you should pick up a couple and bring a friend.

Andrew Eccles

Camille A. Brown will get her Groove on at Joyce SoHo


Joyce SoHo

155 Mercer St. between Houston & Prince Sts.

June 4-7, $18




Dancer, choreographer, and teacher Camille A. Brown will present four works during her too-brief residency at the Joyce SoHo, including the energizing and entertaining GROOVE TO NOBODY’S BUSINESS, MATCHSTICK, THE EVOLUTION OF A SECURED FEMININE, and NEW SECOND LINE. The June 5 performance will be followed by a Q&A moderated by Kyle Abraham.


Kaye Playhouse

East 68th St. between Park & Lexington Aves.

Monday, June 8, $8, 7:00



The New York City Ballet and the Shakespeare Society are collaborating on a special one-night-only performance of excerpts from George Balanchine’s A MIDSUMMER NIGHT’S DREAM, followed by theatrical interpretations of the same scenes, with commentary by director Mark Lamos and dancer Wendy Whelan, with Whelan dancing the role of Titania. The excellent cast also includes Aunjanue Ellis, Andre Holland, Jennifer Ikeda, and Benjamin Walker.

Andrew Eccles

Alvin Ailey Dance Theater concludes golden anniversary at BAM


Brooklyn Academy of Music

BAM Howard Gilman Opera House

30 Lafayette Ave. between Ashland Pl. & St. Felix St.

June 9-14

Tickets: dance $20-$85




The fiftieth anniversary season of the Alvin Ailey Dance Theater concludes at BAM with "Best Of" (featuring George Faison’s SUITE OTIS, REVELATIONS, and a new production of Judith Jamison’s HYMN,) and "Classic Ailey" (including Ailey’s BLUES SUITE with live music by Kenny Brawner and the Brawner Brothers Band, Anniversary Highlights, and, again, REVELATIONS). The company has been in rare form over the course of this celebratory season, reveling in the past, present, and future of dance in America. Among the current standout performers are Matthew Rushing, Linda Celeste Sims, Clifton Brown, Olivia Bowman, Anthony Burrell, and Renee Robinson.

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Riff’s Rants & Raves: Free Summer Shakespeare


Thursdays — Sundays through June 21

Inside Central Park at 103rd St.

Thursdays — Sundays at 7:00 through June 21

Admission: free



Thursday, May 28


Sunday, June 21 New York Classical Theater, led by artistic director Stephen Burdman, presents KING LEAR, moving through the park, incorporating the natural landscape into the production, 7:00


Inwood Hill Park Peninsula

Wednesdays through Saturdays at 7:30

Admission: free


Wednesday, June 3


Saturday, June 20 Moose Hall Theatre Company’s tenth annual season of free shows in the park begins with THE MERCHANT OF VENICE, directed by Ted Minos


Riverside Park

North Patio of Soldiers’ and Sailors’ Monument

West 89th St. & Riverside Dr.

Thursdays through Sundays at 6:30 through June 28

Admission: free


Thursday, June 4


Thursday, June 28 Hudson Warehouse’s sixth annual season of free Shakespeare in the park begins with THE TEMPEST, directed by Jerrod Bogard


Delacorte Theater, Central Park

Tuesday — Saturday at 8:00 through September 14

Admission: free


Wednesday, June 10


Wednesday, July 12 The Public Theater’s annual Shakespeare in the Park summer festival begins with TWELFTH NIGHT, directed by Daniel Sullivan and starring Raul Esparza, Anne Hathaway, Hamish Linklater, Audra McDonald, Jay O. Sanders, Julie White, and others, with original music by HEM

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Riff’s Rants & Raves: Art & Literature


Jacob Javits Center

655 West 34th St.

May 28-31

Registration: $80-$125


Industry-only trade show BEA returns to New York City for its annual convention of all things books, with book sellers, publishers, authors, illustrators, lectures, signings, seminars, special breakfasts and luncheons, and, of course, serious debate over the future of publishing, especially with regard to e-books in the digital age. Among the myriad guests will be Neil Gaiman, Candace Bushnell, Pat Conroy, Julie Andrews Edwards, Chuck Klosterman, Craig Ferguson, Wesley Snipes, Berkeley Breathed, Mary Higgins Clark, Pete Dexter, Kathie Lee Gifford, China Miévelle, Julianne Moore, Michael Connelly, Joyce Carol Oates, Mo Willems, James Ellroy, Heather Graham, Brad Meltzer, James Patterson, Cousin Brucie, Richard Russo, and hundreds of others. Even though it’s open to the trade only, if you have a friend in the business who’s going, they can get you a friends/family badge, although it is $125 per day.

JOSEPH O’NEILL: NETHERLAND (Vintage, May 7, $14.95)

Book Court

163 Court St.

Tuesday, June 2, free, 7:00




Born in Ireland, raised in Holland, and now living in New York City, Joseph O’Neill brings all those sensibilities and more to his beautiful novel, NETHERLAND (now available in paperback). Wildly successful Dutch banker Hans van den Broek, who specializes in correctly anticipating trends in the oil industry, is sent from his base in London to Manhattan, where he expects to work a few years before returning to England. He brings with him his wife, Rachel, and their young son, Jake, attempting to fit in with the New York lifestyle, but Hans can’t get over his one true obsession: cricket. Soon he is part of the New York Cricket Club, playing matches in Wagner Park on Staten Island and hanging out with the mysterious Chuck Ramkissoon, a cricket umpire and curious entrepreneur who has grand plans to make the sport take off in America. As Hans’s relationship with his wife stagnates, his friendship with Ramkissoon grows as the Trinidadian teaches him how to drive, oddly waxes somewhat poetic on the state of the world, and takes him on strange little trips on which Hans chooses to look the other way, knowing something untoward is going on. In NETHERLAND, O’Neill has written one of the great recent New York novels, getting the city right in every one of Hans’s detailed inner monologues and daily dealings. O’Neill (THIS IS THE LIFE, THE BREEZES) often treats readers to long paragraphs of breathless, thrilling prose; on one page a sentence of more than 150 words is followed by one of more than 200, each flowing seamlessly into the next. Hans’s very specific take on the city will charm and captivate anyone who’s ever lived in, visited, or wanted to travel to New York. O’Neill will read from and discuss the PEN/Faulkner Award-winning novel on June 2 at Book Court in Park Slope.


69th Regiment Armory

68 Lexington Ave. between 25th & 26th Sts.

June 6-7, 11:00 am — 6:00 pm

Admission: $10 per day, $15 per weekend



The annual MOCCA Art Festival, organized by SoHo’s Museum of Comic and Cartoon Art, celebrates the best in visual storytelling, with an all-star lineup of industry stars as well as plenty of up-and-comers, from both the big publishing houses as well as DIYers. The booming success of graphic novels and uniquely illustrated works has forced the festival to move from its usual location in the Puck Building to a bigger spread in the 69th Regiment Armory on Lexington Ave. This year’s exhibitors include Abrams Coblentz, DC Comics/Vertigo, Drawn and Quarterly, Fan Fare / Panent Man, Fantagraphics, First Second Books, Jack Kirby Museum, NBM Publishing, Stickman Graphics, and Top Shelf, with such creators and artists as Brendan Burford, Abby Denson, Monica Gallagher, Hope Larson, Tara McPherson, Neil Swaab, Sarah Glidden, and dozens more. The MOCCA Art Festival is always a lot of fun because you can get up close and personal with many of the artists, who generally love talking about their work — especially if you buy something, in which case they will often sign it with a special drawing.

Saturday, June 6 Charles Hatfield and Isaac Cates on Jack Kirby, 11:00 am

Saturday, June 6 Comics Bakery Roundtable, with John Green, Dave Roman, Raina Telgemeier, and Marion Vitus, 12 noon

Saturday, June 6 Klein Award Ceremony, honoring Jerry Robinson, 1:00

Saturday, June 6 Making Good Comics in a New Era, with Alvin Buenaventura, Mats Jonsson, Tom Neely, Brett Warnock, Julia Wertz, and Dylan Williams, moderated by Heidi MacDonald, 2:00

Saturday, June 6 Ah, Humbug! Arnold Roth and Al Jaffee in conversation with Gary Groth, 3:00

Saturday, June 6 Scandinavian Comics 101, moderated by Steffen P. Maarup, 4:00

Saturday, June 6 Paul Karasik on the Twisted Genius of Fletcher Hanks, 5:00

Sunday, June 7 Kent Worcester and Tom Kaczynksi in conversation, 11:00 am

Sunday, June 7 The Astonishing SVA Roundtable, with Nick Breutzman, Jessica Fink, Eric Feurstein, Tom Hart, Dash Shaw, and Jennifer Tong, moderated by Tom Hart, 12 noon

Sunday, June 7 Comics Come in All Shapes and Sizes, with Jason Little, Fay Ryu, and Jim Salicrup, moderated by Ken Wong, 1:15

Sunday, June 7 Adrian Tomine and Seth in conversation, 2:30

Sunday, June 7 Gary Panter and Frank Santoro in conversation, 3:45

Sunday, June 7 Animation from Hell, with Peter Ahern, Danny Antonucci, Hisko Hulsing, Scott Kravitz, Arthur Metcalf, Nirvan Mullick, Bill Plympton, Pat Smith, and J.J. Villard, 5:00

All contents copyright 2009 by Mark Rifkin and twi-ny. All rights reserved. Contents may not be reprinted without written permission. Please note that events, dates, and prices are subject to change.

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twi-ny top two dozen (or so)
weekly reminders & special events


Time Warner Center, second floor

10 Columbus Circle at Broadway, Eighth Ave., & 59th St.

Admission: free



Wednesday, May 27


Sunday, May 31 In conjunction with Toscana in New York week, dozens of original handmade costumes from ROMEO AND JULIET (Franco Zeffirelli, 1968) will be on view, made by the Cerratelli Foundation’s Sartoria, in addition to artists books and book-shaped art from the Center of Contemporary Art Luigi Pecci


Anthology Film Archives

32 Second Ave. at Second St.




Wednesday, May 27


Sunday, May 31 Five-day film festival including "A Tribute to Albert Maysles," featuring a rare screening of MEET MARLON BRANDO hosted by Maysles (May 27 at 7:00); "Italian Chronicles"; and "50 Years of Documentary (50th!)"


Korea Society Gallery

950 Third Ave. at 57th St., eighth floor

Thursday nights in May

Admission: $10



Thursday, May 28 THE FLOWER GIRL (Choi Ik—kyu & Pak Hak, 1972), 6:30


Banya Russian baths

602 Coney Island Ave. between Beverley Rd. & Ave. C, Kensington, Brooklyn

Tickets: $30-$40


Friday, May 29 Gemini & Scorpio host an evening of baths, steam rooms (Russian, Turkish, and Swedish), Jacuzzi, sauna, hookah lounge, energy healing room, cold plunge pool, rooftop smoking deck, DJ Joro-Boro and his EthnoMesh Megalophonia mix, food, homemade infused vodka, optional platzas and massage.


5 C Cultural Café

Ave C. at Fifth St.

Cover: $8 (table minimum $5)



Friday, May 29 Multi-instrumentalist and vocalist Paul Pinto and flutist/ukelelist Andrea La Rose play songs and make stuff up, 8:00


May 29-30, Baruch College

May 31, Gershwin Hotel, 7 East 27th St.


Friday, May 29


Sunday, May 31 Weekend of performances and workshops featuring ukuleles, with Nellie McKay, Bill Tapia, Julia Nunes, Mihana, Ukulele Bartt, Small World Project, Moe Dixon, Ken Bari Murray, Les Chauds Lapins, Sweet Soubrette, Victoria Vox, Jim Beloff, Tripping Lilly, and Prewar Ponies


The Magnet Theater

254 West 29th St.

Tickets: $5




Friday, May 29


Friday, June 5 Long-form improv comedy every Friday night, featuring Mike Barry, Nick Benaquista, Tim Eberle, Dan Scivoletti, and Rob Williams, directed by Alex Marino, with special guests Improv Girl Smash Elsie Jay, 8:30



Rubin Museum of Art

150 West 17th St. at Seventh Ave.

Friday, May 8, 9:30

Free with $7 bar minimum (includes admission to galleries)

212-620-5000 ext 344


Friday, May 29 JULES AND JIM (François Truffaut, 1962), introduced by Nathaniel Rich

JULES AND JIM (François Truffaut, 1962)

François Truffaut’s triangle classic about two best friends, played by Oskar Werner (Jules) and Henri Serre (Jim), World War I, and the woman they both love, the free-spirited Catherine (the marvelous Jeanne Moreau), is one of the most charming, entertaining films you will ever see, a deserving classic of the French New Wave.

Friday, June 5 BLOOD OF A POET (Jean Cocteau, 1930)


Brooklyn Technical High School roof

29 Fort Greene Pl.

Tickets: $9



Saturday, May 30 STRONGMAN (Zachary Levy), with live performance by strongman Stanless Steel and live music by Midnight Masses, followed by an open bar at Crunch, 8:00


University Pl. between East Twelfth St. & Bobkin Ln.

Admission: free



Saturday, May 30


Sunday, May 31 Seventy-ninth annual gathering of artists and artisans selling their wares, including painting, sculpture, photography, jewelry, ceramics, and more, 12 noon — 6:00 pm


Multiple locations in Queens

Weekends through June 14

Admission prices vary


Saturday, May 30


Sunday, June 14 Three weekends of special arts activities along the 7 line, including artist studio tours, mural painting, talks, parties in the park, conversations, live music and dance, and more, at such venues as the Queens Botanical Garden, the Queens Museum of Art, the Langston Hughes Library, the Noguchi Museum, the Thalia Spanish Theatre, Gantry Plaza State Park, Flushing Town Hall, Socrates Sculpture Park, and other locations in Jackson Heights, Willets Point, Flushing, Long Island City, Woodside, and Corona


City will celebrate 61st Israel anniversary in style


57th St. & Fifth Ave., 11:00 am, to 79th St., by 4:00 pm

Admission: free


Sunday, May 31 Celebration of Israel’s sixty-first anniversary, with shofar blowers, Valerie Harper, Lainie Kazan, Richard Kind, Lisa Edelstein, Ron Rifkin, Bryan Greenberg, Freddie Roman, Marissa Jaret Winokur, Miri Ben-Ari, Yakov Yavno, Luigi and Arlette, the Parparim Israeli Dance Ensemble, Yemenite Dance and Music with Vocal Artist Miriam Zafri, Amir & Ron, BaRock Orchestra, Blue Fringe, Chai Five, Harmonia Orchestra, Ricky Pen, Shimon Peer, So Nu Klezmer, the Tefillah Band, and many more, as well as some one hundred thousand marchers


Riverside Park South

Pier 1 at West 68th St.

Admission: free


Sunday, May 31 Sixth annual outdoor extravaganza, featuring live performances by Swingset Mamas, Moey’s Music Party, Catholic Girls, Annie Sidley and Family Band, and AudraRox, a Gymboree Play Tent, yoga demonstrations, dance, arts & crafts, food and fitness booths, face painting, poi workshops, blossom makeovers, MC Nancy Lombardo and stage manager Joy Rose, and other fun and healthy activities for mothers and children, 12 noon — 5:00


Water Taxi Beach

Second St. & Borden Ave., Long Island City

Admission: $20


Sunday, May 31 Believe in Boris, with DJ Boris, 1:00


LAVA Studio

524 Bergen St. between Sixth Ave. & Carlton, Brooklyn

Admission: free (pledges suggested)


Sunday, May 31 Sixth annual benefit for the LAVA Studio Student Scholarship Fund and Community Programs, featuring live performances, tacos and root beer, and more, 2:00


The Malcolm X & Dr. Betty Shabazz Memorial and Educational Center

3940 Broadway at West 165th St.

Tickets: $20-$25



Sunday, May 31 Eighth annual dance event, with Chico Alvarez & Mafimba and Zon de Barrio featuring DJ Broadway, free Latin buffet and floor show, sponsored by the Caribbean Cultural Center African Diaspora Institute, 5:00 — 11:00


Acorn Theatre

410 West 42nd St.

Sundays through June 21

Tickets: $60-$130


Sunday, May 31, 7:00


Sunday, June 7, 3:00 Trio of one-act plays dealing with mental illness, benefiting the Lieber Recovery & Rehabilitation Clinic for Psychotic Disorders at Columbia University, featuring Tom Fontana’s THIS IS ON ME (starring Delphi Harrington and Marian Seldes on May 31and Harrington and Carolyn McCormick on June 7), Harold Pinter’s ASHES TO ASHES (starring Lizbeth Mackay and Larry Pine), and Susan Charlotte’s LOVE DIVIDED BY (starring Tasha Lawrence and John Shea)


Artisanal Cheese Center

500 West 37th St. at Tenth Ave.

Tickets: $85



Monday, June 1 Cooking class and tasting with Dirt Candy chef Amanda Cohen and Max McCalman


Chelsea Art Museum

556 West 22nd St.

Admission: free (suggested donation $20 to benefit charity:water)




Tuesday, June 2 RSVP to

Send all comments, suggestions, reviews, and questions to nyparty@yelp.com by May 29 to receive your Passport to Chelsea (a booklet of discounts at Chelsea businesses) at event featuring a tour of the Chelsea Art Museum, live dance performances, and more, 7:00


Chelsea Cinema 9

260 West 23rd St. between Seventh & Eighth Aves.

Tickets: $25



Tuesday, June 2 Advance preview screening of AWAY WE GO (Sam Mendes, 2009), followed by a discussion with Mendes, 8:00


Goodbye Blue Monday

1087 Broadway, Brooklyn

Admission: free



Tuesday, June 2 Franz Nicolay, Susan Hwang, the Warbles, Justin Remer, Liv Carrow, Deenah Vollmer, Adam Goldman, Laura Brenneman, Kilpatrick, and Natti Vogel present new songs based on the WATCHMEN comic-book series, 7:30


Public Theater

425 Lafayette St. between East Fourth St. & Astor Pl.

February 20 — June 29

General admission: $25 (sweet seats $125)




Tuesday, June 2, 7:00


Wednesday, June 3, 7:00 & 10:00 Underperformed & Neverperformed Bogosiana benefiting the LAByrinth Theater Company


Bryant Park Reading Room

42nd St. side of Bryant Park between Fifth & Sixth Aves.

Wednesdays at 12:30 through September 11

Admission: free



Wednesday, June 3 Christopher Buckley, LOSING MUM AND PUP: A MEMOIR, in conversation with John Tierney, 12:30


Central Park

Naumburg Bandshell, midpark at 72nd St.

Tickets: $350


Wednesday, June 3 Benefit for the Central Park Conservancy, featuring tastings from more than forty restaurants, including Asia de Cuba, BLT Market, Caravaggio, Geisha, Maya, Orsay, Pampano, Shelly’s New York, Tocqueville, and many others, 7:00 — 11:00


Frying Pan

Pier 68 Maritime

26th St. & the Hudson River

Tickets: $75 - $7000


Wednesday, June 3 Second annual benefit for Hudson River Community Sailing, which seeks to "develop leadership in New York City youth through sailing education and provide maritime recreation to the community at large," with drinking, dancing, raffles, an auction, and more, 7:00 pm — 12 midnight


School of Visual Arts Theater

333 West 23rd St. between Eighth & Ninth Aves.

Admission: $10


Wednesday, June 3 Public screening of online film festival, featuring politically and socially conscious shorts, followed by a Q&A with many of the filmmakers, 7:00


Galapagos Art Space

16 Main St., DUMBO

Tickets: $10




Wednesday, June 3 Find out what happened to those members of Buffy the Vampire Slayer’s graduating class who survived in this celebration of all things Buffy, with a costume contest, trivia, and more, 8:00


The Flea Theater

41 White St. between Broadway & Church St.

Tickets: $15



Thursday, June 4 American Contemporary Music Ensemble performs the music of Caleb Burhans, Jefferson Friedman, Nico Muhly, and Ryan Streber, 7:00

Friday, June 5 Anti-Depressant! Jennifer Choi and Kathleen Supové perform the music of Emanuel de Raymondi, Susie Ibarra, Gregor Huebner, Padma Newsome, Randall Woolf, and Jacob TV, 7:00

Saturday, June 6 NexGen — Music of Composers in their 20s and 30s perform the music of Alexandra du Bois, Caroline Mallonée, Matt Marks, Paula Mathussen, Missy Mazolli, and William Zuckerman, 7:00

Sunday, June 7 New York Art Ensemble Monsters! Mary Rowell and Geoffrey Burleson perform the music of Eve Beglarian, Nick Didkovsky, Marc Mellits, Eric Moe, and Daniel Bernard Roumain, with a special "tip of the cap" to Roy Harris, 7:00


Two Boots Tavern

384 Grand St. at Suffolk St.

Admission: free (pizza not free)



Thursday, June 4


Tuesday, June 9 Two Boots pays tribute to the release of Sonic Youth’s THE ETERNAL (Matador) with the introduction of a new slice, called the Eternal


The Brick Theater

575 Metropolitan Ave. between Union & Lorimer

Admission: free but reservations required


Friday, June 5 Free preview of the Antidepressant Festival, featuring the Happy Pill Cabaret followed by the Prescription Pill Party, 8:00; festival continues through July 4, with all tickets $15


Central Park

Cedar Hill, 79th St. & Fifth Ave.

Admission: Free


Friday, June 5 U.S. premiere of HOME (Yann Arthus-Bertrand, 2009), 8:30


American Museum of Natural History

Rose Center for Earth and Space

Central Park West & 81st St.

Admission: $25 (includes Space Show and free museum pass for future use)



Friday, June 5 Multimedia dance party featuring Holy Ghost, Martin Moscrop of a Certain Radio, Activaire DJs, and a DJ set by Moby, 9:00 pm — 1:00 am


Cantor Film Center

36 East Eighth St.

Admission: $10


Friday, June 5


Saturday, June 6 Screening of seven-minute movies made by small teams of filmmakers over the previous weekend, given forty-eight hours, one character, one line of dialogue, and two props, 6:15 & 8:30


IFC Center

323 Sixth Ave. at West Third St.

Weekends at midnight through July 4



Friday, June 5


Saturday, June 6 THE SHINING (Stanley Kubrick, 1980)

Friday, June 12


Saturday, June 13 2001: A SPACE ODYSSEY (Stanley Kubrick, 1968)


Jacob Javits Center

655 West 34th St.

February 28 — March 2

Admission: $20-$269



Friday, June 5


Sunday, June 7 A convention for fans of dark entertainment, celebrating the thirtieth anniversary of Fangoria with guests Guillermo del Toro, Dario Argento, James Marsters, Tobe Hooper, Herschell Gordon Lewis, Doug Bradley, Ashley Laurence, Tom Savini, the cast of the original LAST HOUSE ON THE LEFT, William Lustig, Coralina Cataldi-Tassoni, Larry Fessenden, and many others, with autograph sessions, world premiere screenings, panel discussions, reunions, sinister seminars, spooksmodel, tattoo, and costume contests, and much more


Public Theater

425 Lafayette St. between East Fourth St. & Astor Pl.

February 20 — June 29

Tickets: $10



Friday, June 5


Monday, June 29 The Public Theater, collaborating with the LAByrinth Theater Company (KNIVES AND OTHER SHARP OBJECTS) and the Center Theatre Group in association with Les Freres Corbusier (BLOODY BLOODY ANDREW JACKSON: THE CONCERT VERSION), is back with its annual Public LAB, completes its presentation of four stripped-down productions over four months, with a new work by Suzan-Lori Parks, with all tickets a mere ten bucks



Baryshnikov Arts Center and other venues

450 West 37th St.

Tickets: $20



Saturday, June 6 Roundtable discussion about new video/sound installation by Molly Davies, 1:00; reception and talk with Molly Davies, 2:00; live performances by Polly Motley, Steve Paxton, Sardono, and Kota Yamazaki, 3:30 (exhibition runs June 4-11 and is free at all other times)


910 Grand St. at Waterbury St.

Admission: free



Saturday, June 6 Opening reception of new exhibit running through July 19, curated by Benjamin Evans of NURTUREart, Phoenix Lights of English Kills, Austin Thomas of Pocket Utopia, and Jill McDermid of Grace Exhibition Space, 6:00



200 Hudson St. at Canal St.

Tickets: $12-$15



Saturday, June 6 Dom Flemons and Justin Robinson of the Carolina Chocolate Drops play music from their solo projects, 8:30


Brooklyn Heights Cinema

70 Henry St. at Orange St.




Saturday, June 6


Sunday, June 14 Twelfth annual festival featuring more than 120 film premieres, including Craig Butta’s SEA LEGS, Louis Bélanger’s THE TIMEKEEPER, Jim Isaac’s PIG HUNT, Lyne Charlebois’s BORDERLINE, Tom Schreiber’s DR. ALÉMAN, Jeffery Goodman’s THE LAST LULLABY, and John Weiner and Danny Kuchuk’s CRYPTIC

Sunday, June 7 Fifth annual kidsfilmfest, 1:00

Sunday, June 14 Fifth annual kidsfilmfest, New Museum of Contemporary Art, 2:00 & 5:00


Museum at Eldridge Street

12 Eldridge St. between Canal & Division Sts.

Admssion: free



Sunday, June 7 Chinatown meets the Lower East Side at annual gathering celebrating Chinese and Jewish culture, with Klezmer music and Chinese opera, scribal art and calligraphy, Yiddish and Chinese lessons, lots of food, and other activities, 12 noon — 4:00


West 46th St. between Broadway & Ninth Ave.

Admission: free (but tasting tickets required to sample dishes)



Monday, June 8 Signature dishes will be available from Times Square restaurants (tasting tickets required), with live music and swing dance lessons, 5:00


The Town Hall

123 West 43rd St. between Sixth Ave. & Broadway

Tickets: $40-$500



Monday, June 8 Fun Dor Tus Dor, "From Generation to Generation," honoring Ernest W. Michel, 7:30


New York Public Library for the Performing Arts

40 Lincoln Center Plaza

Admission: free



Tuesday, June 9 Cornell University Jazz Ensemble pays tribute to the centennial of Benny Goodman’s birth, 2:30


Damrosch Park Guggenheim Bandshell

62nd St. between Columbus & Amsterdam Aves.

Admission: free



Tuesday, June 9 Cellist Yo-Yo Ma and the Silk Road Ensemble perform Osvaldo Golijov’s "From Air to Air," 8:00


City Winery

143 Varick St. between Spring & Vandam Sts.

Tickets: $15-$25



Tuesday, June 9 Record release party for former dB’s Peter Holsapple and Chris Stamey, who have collaborated on HERE AND NOW (Bar/None), 9:00


Alice Tully Hall

1941 Broadway at 65th St.

Wednesday, June 10, $100-$500, 7:00



The World Science Festival gets off to a rousing start with an all-star gala at Alice Tully Hall. Live music, dance, and film will mix with science, honoring Edward O. Wilson on his eightieth birthday. The centerpiece of the program will be the world premiere of LIFE: A JOURNEY THROUGH TIME, a multimedia work featuring music by Philip Glass and images by National Geographic photographer Frans Lanting, performed by the Orchestra of St. Luke’s, conducted by Marin Alsop. Among the other opening-night participants are Alan Alda, Glenn Close, Harrison Ford, Christine Baranski, Joshua Bell, Danny Burstein, Todd Ellison, Yo-Yo Ma, James Naughton, Anna Deavere Smith, the National Dance Institute, and the Inspirational Voices of Abyssinian Baptist Church. Tickets for the special event start at $100 for an individual and go as high as $25,000 for a VIP table of twelve. The second annual festival continues through June 14 all over the city, with lectures, discussions, and numerous intriguing presentations.


David H. Koch Theater, Lincoln Center

Broadway at 64th St.

VIP Tasting (5:00) $195, Grand Tasting (7:00) $95


Monday, June 15 More than five hundred premium wines and spirits will be accompanied by signature dishes from two dozen New York restaurants, sponsored by Wine Enthusiast magazine

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