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Events in November

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Well of course there is the Macy’s Thanksgiving Parade, but New York is bursting with activities as the leaves change color and the weather gets colder.

Until 1/3 At Rockefeller Center this season! the first-ever Candy Cottage of Christmas Magic is making its way to NYC and tickets are on sale now! Guests will be treated to a wondrous Christmas tree trunk with candy-coated theatrics and have the chance to embark on an epic scavenger hunt! Grab your tickets here.

Until 3/3 The Bank of America Winter Village at Bryant Park  with 17,000-square-foot ice-skating rink that’s free to use (if you bring your own skates), 180  kiosks to shop til you drop. The Holiday Shops at Bryant Park until 1/2.

The Rink at Rockefeller Center is open  to skate. Tickets start at $21 per person, but the exact price depends on the date, the time of day and age. Skate rentals are available for $11. Local skaters can also purchase a membership to have access to the rink and unlimited skating throughout the season.

Wollman Rink has skating, an on-site restaurants. get ice skating rink tickets right here.

11/2-13: Canstruction: This annual cans-for-a-cause competition pits architecture teams against each other to create larger-than-life art installations using thousands upon thousands of cans of food, all in the name of ending hunger (every can is donated to City Harvest). Brookfield Place, 230 Vesey Street from 10am-8pm.

11/5: New York City Marathon, has thousands of runners from all over the world compete in a 26.2-mile race that spans all five boroughs.

11/8 – 1/1: Big Apple Circus 

11/9 -12/14: Broadway Under the Stars FREE Broadway performances while holiday shopping at The Shops at Columbus Circle.

11/13 – 12/24: Grand Central Holiday Fair 

11/16 – 1/13: The 32nd annual Holiday Train Show will make its return at the New York Botanical Garden with model trains traveling through 200 New York landmark replicas—like the Statue of Liberty, Empire State Building, and others. Plus, the train show is expected to be bigger than ever before with more trains and an outdoor train display to go along with the indoor show

11/17 – 12/24: Union Square Holiday Market

11/17 – 1/1: A reason to head to the Brooklyn Botanic Garden is Lightscape, an illuminated trail of art from local and international artists, featuring the iconic Winter Cathedral and a larger Fire Garden—all set to over a million lights, color and music. This year, it has been reimagined with a longer trail and new immersive experiences along the way, including “Supernova,” a 24-foot-high illuminated Moravian star, a sparkling new Chandelier Walk and a giant red poppy blossoms of Floraison that hover above the trail.

11/17: The beloved New York holiday train at the New York Botanical Garden, for over 30 years, is bigger than ever. Watch model trains go past 200 famous New York landmarks along a nearly half-mile track in the warmth of the Conservatory.

Radio City Christmas Spectacular11/17 – 1/1: Christmas Spectacular Starring the Rockettes Up to 5 shows per day on weekends, the Rockettes are a tradition during the NYC Holiday Season for more than 75 years.

11/17 – 1/7: The Bronx Zoo’s animated lights and LED displays of animals from around the world with 400 wildlife lanterns representing 100 species spread across an expansive area of the zoo. This year, the display showcases the wildlife of New York’s ocean waters and wetlands, plus a new interactive experience celebrating bioluminescent creatures. Sixty-four new lanterns representing nine new animal species will make their debut this year.

11/23: 9am-12pm on NBC The Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. Broadway Stars, Dora the Explorer, Snoopy, Mickey Mouse and Buzz Lightyear all partying together in New York City.

11/24, & 25:  Let it GLOW at the New York Botanical Garden fourth annual NYBG Glow. The outdoor light experience will brighten up the grounds with thousands of energy-efficient LED lights and festive installations. After dark, walk through this 1.5-mile colorful pathway featuring whimsical, picture-perfect installations. Each night from 5-10pm.

11/28 – 12/31: Columbus Circle Holiday Market

Rockefeller Center Tree Lighting

Rockefeller Center Tree Lighting

11/29: The Rockefeller Tree Lighting. The tree will then be lit daily from 5am-midnight until early January. On Christmas Day, the tree is lit for 24 hours and on New Year’s Eve it is lit from 5am to 9pm.

Suzanna, co-owns and publishes the newspaper Times Square Chronicles or T2C. At one point a working actress, she has performed in numerous productions in film, TV, cabaret, opera and theatre. She has performed at The New Orleans Jazz festival, The United Nations and Carnegie Hall. She has a screenplay and a TV show in the works, which she developed with her mentor and friend the late Arthur Herzog. She is a proud member of the Drama Desk and the Outer Critics Circle and was a nominator. Email: suzanna@t2conline.com

Music

Jason Robert Brown’s The Connector Is Intelligent, Thought Provoking and Musically Seamless

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“The truth is not about the facts – forgive me. The facts can always be manipulated, arranged, massaged – We are not purveyors of facts, we are tellers of truths.” …..Or are we?

The Connector now playing at at MCC’s Newman Mills Theater space, has twice been extended and in all honesty should move to Broadway this season. If it did it would stands a massive chance of being nominated or winning Best Musical, Best Score, Best Orchestration, Best Direction, Best Lead Actor and many of the technical awards. I wouldn’t be surprised if it sweeps the Drama Desk and The Outer Critics Circle Awards come award season.

Set in 1996 at a newspaper called “The Connector”, this unrivaled purveyor of “the truth and nothing but the truth,” is about to be put to the test. Enter Ethan Dobson (the remarkable Ben Levi Ross), fresh out of Princeton who’s arrived with talent, guts and a smarmy style.

Scott Bakula, Ben Levi Ross By Joan Marcus

Ethan has long admired and longs to work for the magazine’s editor-in-chief, Conrad O’Brien (welcome back to the fabulous Scott Bakula), who is being over run by new owners, who care more about circulation and the color turquoise, than facts.

Jessica Molaskey By Joan Marcus

The first person Ethan meets and the voice of a collective conscience is Robin Martinez (normally played by Hannah Cruz, but at my performance Ashley Pérez Flanagan). At first attracted to Ethan, Robin starts to see the cracks, as does fact checker, Muriel (a layered performance by Jessica Molaskey). Right from the start, she does not like or trust Ethan. Nor do we. In a strange way, this almost seems like a musicalized version of “The Talented Mr. Ripley”.

As Conrad takes Ethan under his wing, we see three of his stories, each done in a different musical style. The first is about an eccentric West Village scrabble player (the terrific Max Crumm). With a “Rhythm of Life” feel, Ethan becomes an over night success with circulation increasing and a fan by the name of Mona Bland (a memorable Mylinda Hull) who will end up being his downfall.

Fergie Philippe, Hannah Cruz, and Ben Levi Ross Photo: Joan Marcus

The next story is about the take down of the mayor of Jersey City, done in rap/ gangland style that gets him a nomination for the prestigious National Magazine Award. As his source Willis, Fergie Philippe gives his all, but the problem we soon find out, is that though the story is sensational, there are gaping holes in the facts, which Muriel, Robin and Mona glaringly see. 

In the end who is Ethan really? What is truth and what is fact? Does the public really care or do they just want sensationalism? Has the world really gotten over its sexism? It’s racialism? Sadly, I don’t think so. Everything becomes the movie of the week and then goes away until the next big scandal.

The Connector was conceived and directed by Daisy Prince, who does a remarkable job and asks some really intelligent questions. She has also gathered a fabulous cast, who makes this show seem real, relevant and up to date.

Ben Levi Ross By Joan Marcus

Ben Levi Ross will remind you of Jessie Einsenburg. He is loaded with talent. Not only does he posses a vocal prowess that is unmatched, his nuances and phenomenal acting choices make him so watchable. He is like an onion slowly peeling away each delicate layer. He is seriously brilliant.


As Robin, I saw the understudy who is about to take over the role, Ashley Pérez Flanagan. She sings and acts well, but lacks some of the nuances that originally made me want to see this show. I fell in love with the song “Cassandra” in 2017 and either Jason Robert Brown rewrote some of the notes or they were different in the production I saw. This song is pivotal to the show, as the lyrics talk about how women writers are written off.

“Half the stories of the world are left unwritten, half the stories have been lost along the way. And so the people of the world will not encounter, anything but one perspective, one reflection, one directive, male and white and unenlightened, every day. It’s easy for you, it’s easy for you and I’m missing it”

These are the lyrics by Jason Robert Brown for “Cassandra”. Not only is his music rich in rhythm and style, but it reaches into your soul to take capture. His lyrics hit at the heart of pain, truth, anger and honesty. Each song is a playlet with character-driven narratives and stand on their own. Smartly his band is electric and musically I could sit through this show every night of the week and hear new emotional tugs. I am so excited to announce the album will be released in late spring by Concord Theatricals Recording, because I want to listen to these songs again and again. A plus is JRB is on the piano playing with his band.

Jonathan Marc Sherman’s book is funny, terrifying and taps on timely issues, however I did want more as to the why’s and psychology of Ethan, but maybe that’s the point, we don’t understand the why’s and never will.

Not only is the show wonderfully done, but the raw masterful set by Beowulf Boritt, lighting by and projection design by Janette Oi-Suk Yew and choreography by Karla Puno Garcia are shear perfection.

You will not be able to stop thinking about this show, that is full of thought provoking ideas on journalistic integrity and the difference between fact and truth. This is a show not to be missed and that’s a fact.

The Connector: MCC Theater Space, 511 W 52nd Street, through March 17th.

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Entertainment

Ringling Bros. and Barnum and Bailey Circus Makes Grand Return to New York City This Weekend

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Ringling Bros. and Barnum and Bailey Circus is back in The Big Apple in epic way. For the first time in New York City since 2017, the grand return of The Greatest Show On Earth is running until Feb. 25 at Barclays Center in Brooklyn.

Feld Entertainment has brilliantly re-imagined this modern take on the well-known show that is something you have to see to believe. It is a bold and beautiful change that children of all ages will love. You have tremendous fun in the moment and the joy created will make sweet memories to last for a lifetime.

The immersive, live, family entertainment experience captivates through thrilling action and high energy music.

Encounter never-before-seen stunts, acrobatic displays, and comedic acts along the way in the new circus format that features amazing details all the way down to a loveable robotic dog. A truly international cast that includes 75 performers hailing from 18 countries including Argentina, Canada, Cuba, Ethiopia, Italy, Mongolia, Spain, Ukraine, and the United States will inspire audiences through a variety of unbelievable circus acts.

Traditional circus acts blend perfectly with new awe-inspiring moments such as The Triangular Highwire, led by The Lopez Family, sixth-generation circus artists hailing from Mexico and Chile; as well as The Double Wheel of Destiny which showcases four acrobatic daredevils performing challenging back-and-forth leaps and somersaults atop two simultaneously spinning apparatuses suspended 30 feet above the ground and moving at incredibly high speeds.

The dynamic show is a hit, and you will love it!

SHOW DATES & TIMES: 

Barclays Center  performances will continue to run:

Friday, February 23 – 2:00 PM & 6:00 PM

Saturday, February 24 – 11:00 AM, 3:00 PM & 7:00 PM

Sunday, February 25 – 11:00 AM & 3:00 PM

There are also two upcoming cities close to Manhattan with performances in coming days.

NEWARK, NJ 

Prudential Center – 25 Lafayette Street, Newark, NJ 07102

  • Thursday, February 29 – 7:00 PM
  • Friday, March 1 – 7:00 PM
  • Saturday, March 2 – 11:00 AM, 3:00 PM & 7:00 PM
  • Sunday, March 3 – 12:00 PM & 4:00 PM

BELMONT PARK, Long Island, NY

UBS Arena – 2400 Hempstead Turnpike, Belmont Park, NY  11003

  • Friday, March 8 – 7:00 PM
  • Saturday, March 9 – 11:00 AM, 3:00 PM & 7:00 PM
  • Sunday, March 10 – 11:00 AM, 3:00 PM & 7:00 PM

 

 

 

 

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Broadway

The Glorious Corner

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G.H. Harding

MORE MURDER — (Via Deadline) Sophie Ellis-Bextor is gearing up to tour around North America for the first time and adding more cities for fans to see her perform “Murder on the Dance Floor” live.

The British singer’s song is featured in the final scene of Emerald Fennell’s Saltburn, where Barry Keoghan’s Oliver dances naked around the manor. After the scene went viral, the song, co-written by Ellis-Bextor and Gregg Alexander, also went viral on social media. “Murder on the Dance Floor” was originally released in 2001, but it never charted on the Billboard Hot 100 until now, peaking at 51 recently.

Ellis-Bextor recently made an appearance on The Tonight Show starring Jimmy Fallon where she performed the viral hit and the star is now embarking on a North America tour.

The artist announced her first-ever live show in NYC, set to take place on June 6 at Webster Hall, and the date quickly sold out. Ellis-Bextor has now announced more dates across the U.S. and Canada that will take her to San Francisco, San Diego, Boston, Washington D.C. and Philadelphia.

“Oh my… the New York show sold out in a day! Thank you thank you thank you,” Ellis-Bextor said in her newsletter announcing the additional tour dates. “So – how about some more shows in some more cities?! My band and I are coming for you! Super excited. Come and dance with me….”

May 30: August Hall (San Francisco, CA)May 31: The Observatory North Park (San Diego, CA)June 3: 9:30 Club (Washington D.C.)June 4: Royale Boston (Boston, MA)June 5: Union Transfer (Philadelphia, PA)June 6: Webster Hall (New York City, NY)June 8: Danforth Music Hall (Toronto, Ontario, Canada)

I love this record, because its an actual song. Sure, they repeat the title about three-dozen times, but its a great track.

Neil Diamond and Micky Dolenz

NOISE CLOSES — (Via Deadline) Broadway’s A Beautiful Noise, The Neil Diamond Musical will play its final performance on Sunday, June 30, before launching a national tour this fall, producers announced today.

The musical, which began previews on November 2, 2022, at the Broadhurst Theatre and opened that year on December 4, will have played 35 preview performances and 657 regular performances when it closes.

As I’ve said, early reviews of the show, kind of stopped me from going to this. An artist who is even referenced in the play said to me ‘why would I go to a play that got bad reviews.’ Understood.

But, I did see it and absolutely loved it. Of course, I’m somewhat on the business side and loved all the insider-nuances. And, I saw it with the original performers in it.

There will be a national tour and I predict it will be a huge hit as Diamond’s music is multi-generational. As I’ve said, I preferred Diamond’s “Solitary Man”-period more than “America” and “I Am, I Said.” Although, “Turn On Your Heart Light” (written with Carole Bayer Sager and Burt Bacharach) was a great record.

An icon for certain.

SHORT TAKES — Warner’s second Aquaman movie; Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom will stream on MAX on February 27. The first Aquaman movie, out in 2018, remains the highest-grossing DC film of all time. The sequel, after a plethora of media, mostly about Amber Heard, disappeared in a matter of weeks … Broadway-journeyman and Rockers On Broadway-creator Donnie Kehr recupping. Get well soon brother! … Keith Girard’s New York Independent featured an interview with 17-old wunderkind Kjersti Long. Check it out: https://www.thenyindependent.com/music/1704991/kjersti-long-17-explores-her-jersey-roots-by-way-of-utah-with-power-pop-style-video/

Pet Shop Boys

Just listened to the Pet Shop Boys “West End Girls.” What a tremendous record that hold up amazingly well all these years later. It came out in 1984 and produced by Bobby Orlando … Amazon shuttering Freevee? First off, as an offshoot of Amazon, this has got to be one of the worst monikers ever! I mean, FreeVee ... always sounded like frisbee!  Adios … Thursday’s Law & Order was the ode to Sam Waterston’s Jack McCoy-character (Last Dance).

Sam Waterston

After 404 episodes, we had to say goodbye. It wasn’t the greatest episode, but when McCoy took over the case and presented it to the jury, Waterston shone brightly. When McCoy said to Hugh Dancy (Nolan Ryan), it was a hell of a ride, it resonated terrifically. Thanks Jack! …

True Detective

I loved the finale on HBO of True Detective with Jodie Foster and Kali Reis. I didn’t understand it all, but the look and direction (by Issa Lopez) and Jodie Foster was just superb. I had forgotten just how good an actress Foster was. Sure, she was good in Nyad, but it was a supporting role. Here, she was just stellar. I’d like to see more of her …

Micky Jones

It was a grim week medically speaking as talk-show hostess Wendy Williams was diagnosed with aphasia and dementia and Mick Jones of Foreigner, with Parkinson’s. Sending prayers to both … And finally, news surfaced Thursday that an “inebriated” Andy Cohen harassed Brandi Glanville. I don’t know Andy at all, but his bad-boy antics of the last several years were clearly leading to something like this. Glanville’s lawyers even invoked NBC’s Matt Lauer in their brief. Expect a huge media brouhaha over this one. Sad for sure … Happy Bday Lou Christie; Niki Avers and Chloe Gaier.

NAMES IN THE NEWS — Steve Walter; Obi Steinman; Felix Cavaliere; Tom & Lisa Cuddy; Kent Kotal; Ace Frehley; Alex Saltzman; Lush Ice; Tony King; Barry Zelman; Justin Ridener; Kent & Laura Denmark; Mark Bego; Mark Scheerer; Barbara Shelley; and SADIE!

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Off Broadway

Opening Night of A Sign Of The Times

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The York Theatre Company production of A Sign of the Times, opened officially at New World Stages. A Sign of the Times, is a new musical featuring the songs of Petula Clark, Lesley Gore, Dusty Springfield and other classic pop hits of the 1960s. It features a book by Lindsey Hope Pearlman based on an original story by Richard J. Robin. Directing is Gabriel Barre, with music direction and orchestrations by Joseph Church and choreography by JoAnn M. Hunter.

On the red carpet were Lindsey Hope Perlman,Gabriel Barre., Richard J Robin, Joseph Church (opening picture)

Lee Roy Reams,

Lee Roy Reams, Lorna Dallas Brown

Michael D’Angora, Amy Hillner Larsen

Kristofer Buckle-make up artist

Jim Morgan

Gabriel Barre, Richard J. Robin

 

 

 

 

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Cabaret

My View: Carole J. Bufford…”You Don’t Know Me”. ( Now We Do)

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Her show is titled “You Don’t Own Me” and if anyone in the Palm Beach audience didn’t know Carole J. Bufford before, they certainly do now after her exciting performance last night at Cafe Centro.

Carole J. Bufford, award-winning cabaret star and powerhouse vocalist, returned to Cafe Centro last night with a tribute to the fearless, fabulous females of the 1960s. With the music made famous by Janis Joplin, Tina Turner, Carole King, Dionne Warwick, Dusty Springfield, Nancy Sinatra, Cher, and more, Carole and her quartet put their own inimitable spin on those great song classics in her show You Don’t Own Me. Her electrifying  musical tour de force celebrated a time of great change and transition in America and across the pond.

As Carole noted, the musical and cultural landscape was never the same after these bold and daring women planted their flags and ensured their voices were heard.  Well, Carole Bufford’s voice was authoritatively heard in West Palm Beach last night as she took charge of each song and brought the music of the 60’s back to life.  The moveable spot in the club illuminated this dynamic entertainer thrilling each table in a room filled with her Palm Beach fans.

Ms. Bufford’s good friend and co-producer of the evening Sandy Fisher introduced Carole to the enthusiastic Cafe Centro audience.

Next up in the Fisher/Sorokoff Cabaret series is Dawn Derrow on March 12, and on April 24th one of the hottest acts in show business “The New Belters” Seth Sikes & Nicolas King will be bringing their music to  Cafe Centro.

CAROLE J. BUFFORD

HERE’S CAROLE!

CAROLE J. BUFFORD

CAROLE J. BUFFORD

CAROLE J. BUFFORD

CAROLE J. BUFFORD & SANFORD FISHER

STEPHEN SOROKOFF & CAROLE J. BUFFORD

EDA SOROKOFF, GIO MOLLA, RON ABEL, SANFORD FISHER

ROB RUSSELL, CAROLE J. BUFFORD, RON ABEL

DAWN DEROW & CAROLE J. BUFFORD

JEFF LEIBOWITZ & ROB RUSSELL

SANFORD FISHER & ISANNE FISHER

PETER CALO

CAFE CENTRO

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