By Walter Rutledge
The first week of August is the height of the summer, and the same is true for the arts. This week an old master of modern art returns to midtown, while an up and coming dance company debuts in Central Park. Here are a few of the many events taking place in the city that never sleeps guaranteed to get you Out and About.
The Paris of Toulouse-Lautrec: Prints and Posters at Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) 11 W 53rd Street, takes viewers back to La Belle Époque in this survey of the graphic art of Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec (1864–1901), surely one of the best-known and beloved names in art history. All of his iconic images are here, along with the landmarks of late-19th-century Parisian nightlife referenced therein, as well as its habitués onstage and in the audience. The exhibition runs through December 31, 2014. For museum hours and tickets visit moma.org.
Artist Bryan Christie brings his new solo exhibition entitled This Image Tightly Held to 67 Greene Street (3rd Floor) in Soho, New York City, through Sunday, August 17th. Christie’s paintings are created from multiple layers of silk, bound together with beeswax and mounted on wooden panels. Many of the figures’ poses in his paintings are derived from ancient classical sculpture and Renaissance painting. The exhibition is by private appointment only, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
SummerStage, New York’s largest free performing arts festival, bringing over 100 free performances to fourteen parks throughout the five boroughs. On Wednesday, August 6, at 8pm the Central Park MainStage venue will present Spectum Dance Theater and Sidra Bell Dance New York.
Spectrum Dance Theater was founded by Seattle dancers in 1982 to make dance more accessible to diverse communities. Under Donald Byrd’s visionary artistic leadership since 2002, Spectrum has transformed into a company of regional and national significance, igniting audiences through Byrd’s ambitious artistic agenda, whose appetite to explore the arts knows no boundaries. Byrd leads the company through programming themes that give audiences insight into his far-ranging artistic ambition.
The company will also perform on Friday, August 9 8pm at East River Park Germaul Barnes will teach a master class prior to the performance at 7pm.
Sidra Bell Dance New York, is a boutique company of prolific movement artists based in New York City that presents innovative, kinetic, and provocative dance theater works. Bell is a sought after voice in contemporary dance with a strong female vision creating works that ignite the imagination and explore the psyche. The company synthesizes the worlds of design, media, fashion, and spectatorship.
Mark Morris Dance Group returns to the Mostly Mozart Festival Thursday, August 7 through Saturday, August 9, 7:30pm at David H. Koch Theater, Lincoln Center with Acis and Galatea. A production of Mozart’s arrangement of Handel’s operatic work depicting a tragic love triangle among Acis, an Arcadian shepherd; Galatea, a sea nymph; and the giant Polyphemus. Costumes are by Isaac Mizrahi, and scenic design is by Adrianne Lobel. San Francisco’s Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra and Chorale, led by Nicholas McGegan, performs, and Morris—of course—choreographs and directs. Acis and Galatea marks his 12th opera. For more information and tickets visit mostlymozart.org.
DELIRIOUS Dances will present a special, mid-summer dance performance of Enchanted at the Brooklyn Botanic Garden on Wednesday, August 13, 2014 at 3pm and 5pm. Enchanted is inspired by the textures, patterns and beauty of plants and flowers native to New York, that are being threatened by invasive species and over development. The performances are free with admission to the Brooklyn Botanic Garden (Adults $10, Seniors/Students $5, children under 12 are free). The space is limited (40 people) and is first come, first served , it advised wear comfortable shoes.
The Breaking Glass Project NY performance will present six female choreographers; Samantha Pazos, Arielle Petruzzella, Stina Quagebeur, Jennifer Roit, Claudia Schreier and Erin Tunbridge on Saturday, August 9, 7:30pm at The Ailey Citigroup Theater. Breaking Glass Project was founded in 2013 to provide a comprehensive multi-part platform for young emerging female choreographers between the ages of 18-30 of all dance genres. The project is based on the concept of nurturing, supporting and cultivating the next generation of female artists and providing something more supportive than a single performance opportunity. Tickets are $20. For more information and tickets visit brownpapertickets.com.
Pilobolus Dance Theater concludes the Joyce Theater season on Sunday, August 10. The company will present two rollicking programs that exhibit the signature quirkiness and athleticism that leave audiences dazzled year after year. This 2014 roster includes two New York premieres The Inconsistent Pedaler, a created in collaboration with writer/director Shira Geffen and Israeli short story, graphic novelist, and film writer Etgar Keret; and On the Nature of Things. Also presented will be last season’s wildly popular work created with Penn & Teller, along with Megawatt and more favorites from the rich Pilobolus repertory.
The Hundred-Foot Journey opens nationwide on August 8. The Kadam family clashes with Madame Mallory, proprietress of a celebrated French restaurant, after they open their own nearby eatery, until undeniable chemistry causes the Madame to take gifted young chef Hassan under her wing.
Finding Fela will be presented at the IFC Center, 323 Sixth Avenue at West Third Street, continues through Thursday, August 7. No individual better embodies African music of the 1970s and ’80s, and its pivotal role in postcolonial political activism than Fela Kuti. After quickly taking his native Nigeria by storm, the pioneering musician’s confrontational Afrobeat sound soon spread throughout the continent and beyond, even as it made determined enemies of the repressive Nigerian military regime.
Within the past decade, a resurgence of interest in his work has posthumously repopularized Kuti, culminating in the massively successful Broadway show FELA!, written by Jim Lewis and directed by Tony Award winner Bill T. Jones. Academy Award winning director Alex Gibney interweaves the show’s skillful staging with a treasure trove of period interviews and hypnotic performances to recapture the essence of the man, his music, and his enduring cultural and political relevance.
Pilobolus Dance Theater returns to the Joyce Theater through Sunday, August 10. The company will present two rollicking programs that exhibit the signature quirkiness and athleticism that leave audiences dazzled year after year. This 2014 roster includes two New York premieres The Inconsistent Pedaler, a created in collaboration with writer/director Shira Geffen and Israeli short story, graphic novelist, and film writer Etgar Keret; and On the Nature of Things. Also presented will be last season’s wildly popular work created with Penn & Teller, along with Megawatt and more favorites from the rich Pilobolus repertory. Having sold out last season’s family matinee, the company treats audiences to two family matinees this time around.
Just Jim Dale at the Laura Pels Theatre, 111 West 46th Street, through Sunday, August 10. His appearances on Broadway and Off have grown rarer in recent years, but English triple threat Jim Dale will always be remembered for his swaggering bravura turn in the title role of Barnum (which won him the 1980 Tony). The old dog teaches us a few new tricks in this autobiographical variety show made of stories, songs and fancy footwork. For showtimes and ticket information visit roundabouttheatre.org.
Lady Day at Emerson’s Bar & Grill, the musical play starring record breaking six-time Tony Award-winner Audra McDonald, will extend its strictly limited engagement through September 21st, 2014. The production will be dark from September 1st through September 7th while Ms. McDonald takes a previously scheduled vacation, and the final 16 performances will begin starting September 9th, 2014. Tickets are available via Telecharge.com, by calling (212) 239-6200, or at the box office of Circle in the Square (235 West 50th Street, btwn. Broadway and 8th Avenue).
Fuerza Bruta:Wayra at the Daryl Roth Theatre is the third installment of the De La Guarda trilogy runs through Sunday September 7. Conceived and directed by Diqui James with ensemble cast offers a unique thrills for a diverse audience of both the theatre savvy and newcomer. The production is a visually impressive dance-rave thrill ride that merges striking imagery with techno music and aerial showboating. Running time: 1hr 20mins with no intermission. For a complete schedule and tickets visit darylroththeatre.com.
The Dance Theatre of Harlem Street Festival will take place Saturday, August 9 from noon to 7pm on West 152nd Street between Amsterdam and St. Nicholas. The seven-hour event promises an afternoon of fun and entertainment including live performances of music and dance by students from the Dance Theatre of Harlem School with professional and amateur talent from around the city. Street vendors line the 152nd Street block offering a variety of American and ethnic foods, jewelry, books, clothing and other fare. Over the years, the Street Festival has grown more successful both in content and attendance.
Syfy Movies with a View Festival in Brooklyn Bridge Park, through August 28 combines four of your favorite New York activities—sitting in Brooklyn Bridge Park, watching a movie, doing something (anything!) related to animals and not paying any money—wit. The festival will be screening a different movie (for free!) every Thursday at sundown, with DJs to keep you entertained if you get there early. And you should get there early. The movie this week is Cat On A Hot Tin Roof.
We look forward to seeing you Out and About
Get well soon Wale