Thursday, December 31, 2009

NYC Tourism Down for the First Time in 8 Years

posted by Father Tony

This is not a surprise. The recession is not imaginary and we have friends who had been frequent NYC visitors before the economic downturn. I am glad this NY Times report included the fact that the downturn in domestic visits was offset considerably by foreign tourists taking advantage of the weaker dollar. I have never before this year heard foreign languages prevail on city sidewalks.

Let's boil down the stats presented. Visitors predicted to be down by 5%. Hotel occupancy rates down 5% and Broadway show attendance down 5%.

Looks like the downturn is 5%, no? Expect some discounted room and ticket prices in the new year. Don't hold your breath for Amtrak to wake up.

New Years Booze

Since it's New Years Eve and everyone is offering up their hooch-related blogs, I'll throw my hat in the ring too. We're heading to a small BYOB restaurant with friends and are to bring whatever it is we want to drink.  The star of my show this evening will be this stunning, sparkling Limited Edition Mirrorball bottle of Absolut(r).

Glittery booze for a better 2010!!

QNY Wine List - One of These is Excellent!

By Father Tony

Making a last minute wine run? Here are two Spaniards and One Argentinian:

Volteo 2008 Tempranillo + Shiraz
Tapeña 2006 Garnacha
Condor Peak 2008 Malbec

Can you guess which of these $11 bottles is head and shoulders above the other two?

Drinking in the New Year

Posted by Brooklyn Bill

Toward the end of '09, I did a lot of thinking about drinking. Pretty much the whole goddamn decade was one long reason to get plastered, if you were paying attention to current events. But I started focusing on, specifically, cocktail drinking late this year because of an article about making proper drinks for a party that I edited for the magazine where I work.*

Then I saw The Essential Cocktail by Dale DeGroff in a Papyrus store and bought it on impulse, though it was an impulse purchase backed with the knowledge—gained from the wine and spirits columnist for the magazine—that DeGroff is pretty much the person you'd want to learn about cocktails from. And I've been having lots of fun reading it and taking in the drink-porn photos.

For Christmas, at my request, my sister and her family gave me a sleek and sexy cocktail shaker, a jigger, and a cocktail spoon that doubles as an ice chopper.

Now all I need is some booze! And some recommendations. I've been on a kick for gin and tonics lately** but I'm eager to branch out. What cocktails do you make at home or request at a bar that I should try? I'm also curious about which brands of liquor you think are best and which expensive ones aren't worth the extra coin.

*In the interest of keeping my working and blogging lives separate, I'm not going to link to the story here. If you're curious to read it, shoot me an e-mail and I'll send you the link.

**That's the result of another article I edited by that columnist about new ways to spruce up the classic G&T. I'm obviously highly impressionable when it comes to what I drink. :-)

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Review: The Understudy

I attended a performance of the new Theresa Rebeck play The Understudy.  Rebeck is responsible for such other works as Omnium Gatherum, Bad Dates and The Water's Edge.  The play stars Julie White (Tony Award for The Little Dog Laughed), Justin Kirk (Showtimes's Weeds, HBO's Angels in America) and Mark-Paul Gosselaar (Raising the Bar, NYPD Blue, and yes, Saved By The Bell).  The production is directed by Scott Ellis.

In short - I loved it.

My Very First Time...

By Baad Lamb “Bob’s sinks are now selling for hundreds of thousand of dollars!”

This was Saturday afternoon lunchtime conversation, a mother boasting about her son to old friends and now one new acquaintance (me). But an audible question mark in her voice hinted that she might not fully understand just what Bob actually did, or why anyone would pay so much money for his ”sinks”. Naturally, I was intrigued, but perhaps because I was both the newest and the youngest member in this group I remained silent as the conversation moved on.

A few years later at a similar gathering, I was lucky to have Leah speak of her son with pride once again.

“Bob has a new installation, and it is going to be at the Dia in New York.”

This time I was comfortable enough to ask the right questions, to get the where and when details. I now knew I had to schedule a New York weekend, seek out this “Dia” and see for myself what $100,000 sinks looked like; especially in an installation.

Back in high school, I had somehow managed to arrange my lunch, two study periods and my actual art class all in a row, so that three times a week, I was in the art room for more than half the day. A lot of my time was spent making drawings and paintings and occasionally clay sculpture. Sometimes, our teacher would tell us about the famous contemporary artists of the day. But if installations were part of the art-vocabulary in my rural town, I was absent that day.

Seems absurd that it took till 1993 before my first time.

It's Always Thrilling in Coney Island

Larry Kramer Is Still Kicking Ass at 74

Posted by Brooklyn Bill

I really enjoyed this profile of Larry Kramer from New York magazine. It sounds like he'd be a nightmare to deal with on a personal basis day after day, but in this time when the Democratic Party listens only to the wishes of its corporate overlords and Americans seem indifferent to everything except the latest celebrity scandal, we're sorely in need of about a hundred Larry Kramers to kick some major ass. I'll be buying his The American People in whatever form it eventually materializes.

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Nine (the movie)

Posted by Mondschein

When I heard that the tale of Guido Contini was coming back to film, I was excited.  Having seen the revival of Nine on Broadway in 2003 (even with the replacement cast), I had high hopes.  With Rob Marshall at the helm, following his great success with "Chicago" in 2002, the potential was great.

Casting announcements were also pretty exciting - - Penelope Cruz, Nicole Kidman, Judi Dench, Marion Cotillard, Kate Hudson, Sophia Loren, even Fergie - - quite a starry production.  I was skepticalat first when Daniel Day-Lewis was announced as Guido, but knowing his work in such a wide variety of characters, I thought he would be a pleasant surprise.

Then I went to see it last weekend.

(Spoiler alert)

A Queer New York Review: Avatar

By Father Tony

I have been cinematically dazzled by the likes of The Wizard of Oz, King Kong, 2001 A Space Odyssey, Star Wars, ET, Titanic, and Jurassic Park. Yesterday, I saw Avatar in 3-D and I am afraid that I may never again be thrilled by special effects that will surely limp compared to what has been delivered in Avatar. I highly recommend seeing this in 3D.

I loathe and avoid reading reviews that explain a movie and being subjected to trailers and stills that skim the best moments and use them to tease you into the theater. All I knew about Avatar was that it is supposedly visually fantastic. I was skeptical. Would I feel anything for animated blue aliens and more rampaging dino-beasts?  Surely, I'm not the most jaded of movie-goers, but I am not easily pleased as an audience member.

Review: Nine

By David

Over the last week I caught a number of different productions and films, and I know you are all just salivating with anticipation to hear my opinion on the merits of each.  

I'm going to start with the movie Nine, which is probably the only review you'll care about because the rest are theater productions in New York City and one has already closed, so really, I almost shouldn't bother with the other two, but I will at some point because I can.

But for now - Nine.

(click below to read the full review)

NYC, Witch's Tits, and all that Wind

I think we all need to hold mittened hands and sing the refrain from Moby's "When It's Cold I'd Like to Die":
"I don't want to swim the ocean
I don't want to fight the tide
I don't want to swim forever
When it's cold I'd like to die"

Father Tony is not invited in this gathering since he is someplace warmer.

Monday, December 28, 2009

QNY Wine List: An Organic Malbec

By Father Tony

Here's a great bottle of Malbec and you can find it in Manhattan. Details after the break.

The Unofficial Flower of New York City

By Father Tony

According to this 2007 press release from the Mayor’s office, the daffodil is the official flower of New York City. The “Daffodil Project" is a fine way to beautify the city, and an economical one, considering the fact that daffodils return and multiply with every spring.

That said, the orchid would have been a better choice.

Explanation and photos of some of our orchids, after the break.

Sunday, December 27, 2009

First NYC 1/2 Marathon of 2010

Posted by Beau

(Photo of author, courtesy of Official Race Photographer, Brightroom)

The first 1/2 marathon of the NYC racing season is set for January 24th, 2010.  It is not too late to register and run if anyone is interested.  The 2010 racing season is packed with tons of different runs of varying distances, all over the five boroughs, with fantastic people.  There is room for runners of all levels of experiences and interest.  

Walking Backward through Times Square

Posted by Father Tony

Watch this amazing video by artist Hye Yeon Nam. It is the runner-up in Metropolis Art Prize 2009.

(via c-monster)

A Wonderful NYC Holiday Party

By Father Tony

I sometimes suspect that everyone outside New York likes the illusion that all New Yorkers live in immense converted industrial lofts and throw huge parties attended by fascinating and beautiful people. Ray and Bob's annual Christmas Party at their penthouse home on West 27th St lives up to that fantasy.

We took a taxi that fishtailed through the new snow on Fifth Avenue.

Photo/video of the party, after the jump.

Saturday, December 26, 2009

The Land of Black Coats

Top 10 Architectural Moments of 2009 - NYC has #2,5,6

In the LA Times, Christopher Hawthorne offers his "Top 10" list of architectural moments of 2009. In the #2 spot is the new Alice Tully. The pedestrian mall on Broadway is #5 and the High Line is #6. These are great choices, and I am reminded of how many photos I have of these places. Thank God for digital or our home would be filled to the ceiling with boxes of photos and reels of what used to be called "home movies".

I made this video on Memorial Day, May 25, 2009, recording the celebration of the opening of the Broadway pedestrian mall.

Friday, December 25, 2009

A Divine Christmas

By Father Tony

Our pal (and favorite NSFW New York blogger) BJ has honored his annual holiday tradition by posting this. It's from "Female Trouble" by John Waters, but really, it's a page from my childhood.

Christmas Cookies To Die For!

By Father Tony

In this post, QNY's Brooklyn Bill makes ice cream inspired by a Martha Stewart recipe for chewy chocolate gingerbread cookies. They sounded wonderful so I decided to make a batch as my contribution to the menu of a Christmas Day dinner at the home of friends.

They came out perfect and they are extremely aromatic. After the jump, a step-by-step photo chronicle of the process will augment what Martha tells you to do. Her television studio is located at 221 West 26th Street. (It always makes me happy to use a few vintage kitchen bowls.)

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Alicia Keys's Love Song to New York

Posted by Brooklyn Bill

I'm really enjoying Alicia Keys's new album, The Element of Freedom, and one of my favorite songs from it is a love song to New York called "Empire State of Mind (Part II) Broken Down."

"I'm gonna make it by any means. I got a pocketful of dreams. Baby, I'm from New York," Keys sings. "Concrete jungle where dreams are made of. There's nothing you can't do. Now you're in New York."

The original "Empire State of Mind" was a Jay-Z song that featured Keys playing piano and singing what's now the chorus of "Part II."

Because I bought the deluxe version of the album, I got an "intimate 'acoustic' studio performance" video of "Part II," which has a lot to recommend it:


Posted by Darling!

Put a little something under the tree. For me!
As seen in The New York Times. Hit that link for "Mad Men" holiday style!

Holiday Greetings from Queer New York

For the Love of NYC: A Day Open to Adventures

Posted by Beau

(Photo by Robert Paul Young)

Rather than write a post about all the adventures I did have today, I decided to drop a little ditty here at Queer New York about one of the best, most enviable things I can think of about New York City: I have an entire day off from work and I'm in the city (after a much extended absence) with absolutely nothing to do.   This means I can set out this morning with nothing but NYC wanderlust crashing up against the Christmas Eve vibe of the city.  Running through Central Park! Museums! Christmas Windows! Walking around looking at weirdness and wonderfulness! Dare I stop in somewhere for a glass of wine for lunch?
I suppose you can do this in any city, but can you think of one more fun or full of possibilities than New York?
Doubt it.
(Photo: / CC BY 2.0)

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

The Time Warner Stars

In its third (fourth?) year, the Moravian stars in the lobby of the Time Warner Center at Columbus Circle are my favorite New York City Christmas lights. When you watch them from inside, where you can hear the music to which they are set, the soaring glass wall reflects the stars and doubles the spectacle. I love the finale at the end of this video where the stars freak out and their tips start sparkling. Last year I spent an afternoon watching the installation crew hang these.


Posted by Darling!

(Available at

A Queer New York Subway Moment

By Father Tony

Carrying a heavy shoulder bag and dragging a wheelie, I get into the B train and deliver my question.

“Does this stop at 42nd Street?”

A very pretty blonde lady seated in front of me shakes her head no.

“I guess that means I need to get off at 59th because I need to connect with the E.”

“No, you should stay on until 50th and transfer to the E there.”

“Thanks, Jessica, but I’ve been told that I’d have to get out at 50th Street station and re-enter and re-pay to get on the E there, so I’m not taking your advice even though you are Cricket Blair’s mother and John Abbott married you before you died. Out of pity.”

She was laughing as I got out at 59th.

PLAY ART (A new art form?)

By Father Tony

My pal and fellow Manhattanite, Bob Gregson, is a "play artist".  Here's what that means:


PLAY ART is a new art form that calls for active participation of the viewer. Only through interaction does Play Art disclose its secrets and inherent principles. It is the intention of Play Artists that their work be touched, influenced, and experienced; these are works that demand to be manipulated, rearranged, or set into motion.

Some Play Artists focus on shapes and structures, others rely on scientific techniques like mechanical principles, physics or digital technology. Whatever the elements, Play Art aims to stimulate curiosity and creativity. Play Art captures the viewer's imagination and gives rise to the joy of discovery by encouraging hands-on experimentation.

Watch the video and tell me if you think this is good art or hogwash.

The Fantastic Mr. Fox Makes an Appearance at Bergdorf's

Angels, Punks and Raging Queens

Posted by David

This past Sunday I attended a fundraiser in the West Village, just south of Washington Square Park.

The event was called Teddy Cares and is hosted and driven by Ruby Rims. Ruby is a drag queen, by the way, for those of you readers in Topeka.

Teddy Cares raises money for the Actors Fund AIDS Program. The event also supports Judson Memorial Church, where the performances were held. Judson is also deeply involved with the community and provides life-saving programs to any and all who need them.

I was there because of Ruby. I was first exposed - I don't think there is a better word for it - to Ruby when I was a regular at Eighty Eights, a long lamented piano bar that I have spoken of previously. Ruby was part of the inner circle at Eighty Eights that welcomed me almost immediately from the first night I happened upon the place. I, too, became a regular and in the years following the bar's demise, annual events such as this became the primary time we saw each other. [More, with pics and video, after the jump.]

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Sharpen your pencils, QNY designers!

The Department of Health and Mental Hygiene invites you to design a new NYC condom wrapper.

The designer yves béhar produced the current version (on the right).

Who would have thought we'd be living in an age of collectible condoms?

(Thanks, Birdie, for reminding me that we ought to get cracking on this.)

The Spa at Chelsea Piers. Ask for Scott.

Like most New Yorkers, the Baad Lamb and I have limited space and so we have stopped collecting stuff. Instead, on holidays, anniversaries and birthdays, we are apt to give each other spa treatments, a luxury that is memorable but involves no ongoing servitude and accommodation.

We have tried a variety of NYC spas but there is one to which we frequently return. It is located in the Chelsea Piers complex.

Unpremeditated Heroism on West 20th Street

Monday, December 21, 2009

King Cole Bar at the St. Regis Hotel

Posted by Beau 
The snowpocalypse this past weekend wan't much of anything but the cold dregs and coming months of winter have me turning to the list of things I would like to do (or should want to do) in New York City before the end of my days.   Having drinks at the King Cole Bar in the St. Regis Hotel in Midtown East was an easy choice.  It was not so much about having expensive cocktails in a dark-paneled, up-scale location where supposedly the Bloody Mary was introduced to the US, but rather the famous Maxfield Parrish mural backing the entire length of the bar.

Ex New Yorker Boy George Back In The News.

Posted by Donnie

The BBC is reporting that British Probation Officers have denied permission for Boy George to appear in the British version of Big Brother. The Boy is appealing the decision. Many state that the British version which is very popular is better than the American version. George was being cast to stay in a home with Pamela Anderson of Bay Watch Fame and rap artist MC Hammer, and to me that would be punishment in itself.

George is currently on probation after the British courts found him guilty of handcuffing and imprisoning a Swedish male escort Auden Carlson.

The "Boy" lived in New York for a while and was busted in October of 2005 here in New York City for having cocaine in his residence. This was when he was working with Rosie O'Donnell in the "TABOO" Broadway show. He was sentenced to community service and was required to sweep up our Broadway streets.

Manhattan Mainstreaming

We were not surprised to see this ad on West 23rd Street in the gayborhood called Chelsea.

We were, however, very surprised to see this ad on West 66th at the center of our Upper West Side neighborhood, Maclarendale.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

WABC RADIO IN The 60s and 70s When AM Was King.

By Donnie

The Wall Street Journal is reporting the Citadel Broadcasting has filed for bankruptcy protection. Here in New York they own WABC radio. WABC radio no longer plays music having become a very conservative talk radio station. I like to refer to it as "angry white guy radio".

When I was a little boy in the 60s, with high school and college in the 70s, I grew up with WABC until the FM radio format led by WNEW overtook "AM" radio. My first 45 was a song by the 1910 Fruit Gum Company called 1-2-3 Red Light. ( click on 1-2-3 to hear some bubble gum).

There is hardly a New Yorker alive who won't fondly recall the 60s and early 70s when WABC dominated NYC radio with its top 40 format. From the Beatles to the Temptations, they played all the hits in the "45" format. Who can forget the lengendary DJs such as, Cousin Brucie , Harry Harrison and Dan Ingram to name a few.

I don't long for the past, but the memories and music of my youth are part of who I am today and when I hear the songs, I smile. How about you?

The Jew of Malta

Posted by Mondschein

"The Jew of Malta" presented by The York Shakespeare Company at the Jewish Community Center in Manhattan, December 17, 2009.

(Photo by Michelle Sims)

Christopher Marlowe's sixteenth century tragedy is presented as a farce in this barebones production by The York Shakespeare Company, running in repertory with Shakespeare's later "Merchant of Venice."

It's an interesting concept, but questionably executed by the large and attractive, yet minimally skilled cast in this production directed by artistic director Seth Duerr.  The plot, almost Byzantine in its twists, turns and reversalsis summarized here. More interesting is the premise and attitude towards Jews afforded by Mr. Marlowe.  The titular Jew, Barabas (Paul Rubin) is presented as a scheming, godless villain, quick to deception and murder in the name of greed and revenge.  His only daughter Abigail (Emily Rose Prats) only gets sympathy for her repentant conversion to Christianity as she learns of her father's evil deeds.  In what was apparently the style at the time, bodies litter the stage both on and off in ever-increasing numbers as the villain-Jew is vanquished.

Mr. Rubin's Barabas suffers under the burden of the period language leaving us with a stiff and stilted performance.  Faring far better is Matthew Foster as the Maltese Governor, Ferneze.  His command of the character and the language are commendable in an energetic performance.  One or two other exceptions raise themselves from the rest of the cast, including Brian Morvant's Don Mathias and Nate Washburn's Don Lodowick, in excellent swordplay as they murder each other over the hand of the fair Abigail.  My old friend David Dewitt, returning to the NY stage after an extended absence shows his own core skills as Father Barnardine.

As I mentioned above, the concept of tragedy as farce is an interesting approach, but only occasionally successful.  Playing upon a bare stage, Mr. Duerr does little to differentiate scene locations other than the filing in of the various characters and their supporting entourages.  The traffic is directed pretty well, but it feels that a little more time might have been spent on character development.

Chocolate-and-Spice Treats for the Holidays

Posted by Brooklyn Bill

Chocolate-and-spice—especially chocolate-and-ginger—is a favorite flavor combination of mine. In this post, I'm going to do a wrap-up of chocolate-and-spice treats I've made around the holidays the past few years, with links to the full stories on my personal blog. It's sorta like one of those lame-ass sitcom episodes in which they repeatedly flash back to things that happened in other episodes so they don't have to write that much new material. Only with 100% less lame-ass-ness and absolutely no clips of Kirk Cameron as Mike Seaver!

My favorite cookies of all time are Martha Stewart's Chocolate-Gingerbread Cookies. I also love to make ice cream; during the spring and summer, I typically make 6 to 10 batches of various flavors (and I'll make the occasional batch in fall and winter). So it was probably inevitable that I'd eventually get the big idea to make an ice cream version of the cookie. The results, I gotta say, were pretty damn good.


A Christmas Carol: Scrooge & Marley

Posted by Mondschein

"A Christmas Carol: Scrooge & Marley" Barefoot Theatre Company presented by Horse Trade Theater Group at The Kraine Theater, December 16, 2009

As part of their 70/70 Horovits Project, celebrating playwright Israel Horovitz' 70th birthday with 70 of his plays presented around the world, Barefoot Theatre company presents his adaptation of the Dicken's short story.

The 85 minute piece, performed without intermission is a faithful retelling of the greed and redemption of Ebenezer Scrooge (John Gazzale).  Here, the story is narrated by the ghost of Jacob Marley (Ken Glickfield) and directed in an eclectic mixture of styles by Robert Bruce McIntosh.  I'm sure many of his choices, such as mixing in a bit of kabuki,  were directed by budget (or lack thereof), with some more successful than others, but resulting in a uneven performance with sometimes jarring transitions.  Also uneven were the performances among the cast.

Carrying the majority of the burden, and successfully so to our fortune is Mr. Gazzale.  Whether written or directed as such, his Scrooge is quite the teary and regretful soul, with the waterworks beginning during the visit from the Ghost of Christmas Past (Caitlin Davies), and flowing freely until the final curtain.  Still, he commands the stage and delivers with conviction, head and shoulders above his castmates.  Almost as successful is Mr. Glickfield's Jacob Marley. While his makeup looked more canine than rotted, his delivery stumbled and stammered from time to time.  Sadly, the rest of the cast, for the most part, were rather amateurish despite their energy and intent.  Despite that, the play's excellent writing does manage to shine through.

It's A Delivery Boy's Holiday!

By Father Tony

Mercury Experiences Some Weather

Snowpocalypse Not

Yesterday, the East Coast was hit by a winter storm, dumping several feet of snow on many lucky children hoping for a white Christmas. The weathermen on every network were making predictions for New York City: the storm will hit at noon, or 4pm, or 10pm - we'll get 23+ inches!! Certainly!

I'm sure amounts vary by neighborhood, but I'm looking at no more than 10 inches here in Manhattan. Still, it's pretty for now. Time to go take some pictures of the non-blizzard aftermath.

QNY Condemnation: A Piece Of Bad Public Art

I've tried to find something about this painted metal sculpture to like. It's terrorizing the southeast corner of Central Park. The only good thing I can say about it is that it's temporary.

Public art. Can't live with it or without it. More often bad than good.  In this case, I have to admit that I've seen tourists smile while sitting on the turned up ends that form stools. On that level, it works. To me, it looks like a corrupted strand of mutant DNA. Ignoble.

Altar Boyz

Posted by Mondschein

"Altar Boyz" at New World Stages, December 10, 2010

After an almost 5 year run, "Altar Boyz" is closing January 10, 2010, having played over 2,000 performances.  I've seen the show on two other occasions during its run, as it evolved from a full two-act production, to a 90 minute one-act.  Hatched from a successful premiere at the New York Musical Theater Festival in September, 2004, it moved quickly to its current home in February of 2005.

The first two visits were to a tightly-run performance, with some nuance and detail in the story of the Christian boy band of Matthew, Mark, Luke, Juan and Abraham.  In this last visit, the age is showing with character performances reduced to mere stereotypes.  Guiltiest of this was Travis Nesbitt's Mark, played more like a 15 year old girl, rather than the twink of questionable sexual orientation that Mr. Nesbitt's predecessor's accomplished more credibly.  Michael Kadin Craig's Matthew is also missing some of the pretty boy glamour of those who came before him.

Still it's a high energy evening, with plenty of heavy-handed laughs.

Noel Coward's Brief Encounter

Posted by Mondschein

"Noel Coward's Brief Encounter" presented by Kneehigh Theatre at St. Ann's Warehouse, December 8, 2009

(photo by Pavel Antonov)

In a lovely production mixing film, theatre and British music hall style numbers, the tale of two noble lovers comes to life in Brooklyn.  Director Emma Rice has adapted the classic 1945 film, which actually began as part of Noel Coward's cycle of ten one-acts, "Tonight at 8:30" entitled "Still Life" from 1936.

The event begins in the lobby as the ensemble, dressed as uniformed movie ushers, entertain the waiting audience with musical numbers from the 1930s and 1940s, accompanied by a snare drum, ukelele, and trumpet.

Ms. Rice's staging makes great use of simple stage elements, which reminded me a bit of the staging technique used by Maria Aitken in another British film adaptation of "Alfred Hitchcock's The 39 Steps" in 2008.  She does take a slightly different approach, using black and white film sequences which the actors appear to jump in and from for various transitions.  The film relies heavily on Rachmaninoff's Piano Concerto No. 2, though Ms. Rice makes quite judicious use of its lush music, at one point using a choral vocalise of one section when emotion runs high.  The impact is breathtaking.

Leading the cast is a truly lovely and touching performance by  Hannah Yelland as Laura.  There's a bit of Dorothy McGuire about her, which adds a sweet layer of vulnerability.  Tristan Sturrock's Alec, dashing and handsome, matches Ms. Yelland's intensity, but edges near melodrama from time to time.  Their story is cleverly supported by an eclectic ensemble chorus playing all of the supporting roles to often hilarious effect. Special mention goes to Dorothy Atkinson, small in stature, but bringing in some of the biggest laughs of the evening.

The show has been extended to run through January 17, 2010.

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Holiday Diversity

In the stately lobby of the Madison Avenue office building in which I work worked, the choir celebrates diversity with this traditional Jewish song. I'm guessing you wouldn't really call it a carol, would you?

When you know its the holidays!

By Maurice Michaane

Random holiday photo from Avenutra Florida of a Holiday Train setup!
Sent from my Verizon Wireless BlackBerry

A Different View

Tim Burton Art Exhibition at MoMA

Posted by Beau

With my schedule full of decidedly non-NYC things to do over the next few weeks, I seized the opportunity to go see the Tim Burton exhibition now featured at the Museum of Modern Art in Midtown, NYC.  The special showing is sponsored by the SyFy channel and is a collection of Tim Burton's art including drawings, sketches, paintings, sculptures, and other related items from his movies and animated shorts he's directed and produced over the course of several decades.

Hotel Empire

By Father Tony

We thought we should see the view from the rooftop outdoor deck/lounge/pool space at the reopened Hotel Empire across from Lincoln Center. The sign above that rooftop space is huge. Each letter is eight feet high.

A brief tour in photos, after the jump.

Friday, December 18, 2009


By Maurice Michaane!

Who says dessert isn't heaven!

Guess what type of cake it is!
Sent from my Verizon Wireless BlackBerry


By Maurice Michaane

Random Photo for the Holiday Rush @ LaGuardia Airport!
Sent from my Verizon Wireless BlackBerry


Posted by Mondschein

"Ragtime" at the Neil Simon Theatre, December 6, 2009

In its first Broadway revival, Lynn Ahrens and Stephen Flaherty's epic tale of three very different American families makes a triumphant return, focusing on their excellent score.

I count myself fortunate for having seen the original production, at what is now the Hilton Theatre, even if it was late in the run (none of the original leads remained).  It was an overwhelming experience - a three story set on which they drove and destroyed a Model T Ford eight times a week.

The focus here, as I mentioned, is now on the score, not a mammoth theatrical installation, although you can't describe Derek McLane's cast iron set small. It's a nice tribute to the old Pennsylvania Station designed by Stanford White, whose personal demise is featured early in the show as Evelyn Nesbitt (Savannah Wise) is introduced.

But I digress.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Please vote for QNY's Favorite Curmudgeon Blogger

Send Joey on a cruise by voting here.
Think of how much good stuff he daily delivers.
(I bet he's making a little prayer, even though he tries hard to convince us that he's not a believer.)