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Times Square Played Tribute To Jackie Robinson

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New York City honored the 75th anniversary of the late Jackie Robinson breaking Major League Baseball’s color barrier. On 42nd Street and Broadway the street was temporarily renamed “Jackie Robinson Way” last Friday.

MLB commissioner Rob Manfred, along with Robinson’s eldest granddaughter, Sonya Pankey, and Hall of Famers Ken Griffey Jr., Mariano Rivera and Joe Torre, unveiled a blue-and-white street sign showcasing Robinson’s logos to commemorate the 75 years.

Robinson broke the baseball color line when he started at first base for the Brooklyn Dodgers on April 15, 1947. When the Dodgers signed Robinson, it heralded the end of racial segregation in professional baseball that had relegated black players to the Negro leagues since the 1880s. Robinson was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1962.

During his 10-year MLB career, Robinson won the inaugural Rookie of the Year Award in 1947, was an All-Star for six consecutive seasons from 1949 through 1954, and won the National League Most Valuable Player Award in 1949—the first black player so honored. Robinson played in six World Series and contributed to the Dodgers’ 1955 World Series championship.

In 1997, MLB retired his uniform number 42 across all major league teams; he was the first professional athlete in any sport to be so honored. MLB also adopted a new annual tradition, “Jackie Robinson Day”, for the first time on April 15, 2004, on which every player on every team wears No. 42.

Robinson’s character, his use of nonviolence, and his talent challenged the traditional basis of segregation that had then marked many other aspects of American life. He influenced the culture of and contributed significantly to the civil rights movement. Robinson also was the first black television analyst in MLB and the first black vice president of a major American corporation, Chock full o’Nuts. In the 1960s, he helped establish the Freedom National Bank, an African-American-owned financial institution based in Harlem, New York. After his death in 1972, Robinson was posthumously awarded the Congressional Gold Medal and Presidential Medal of Freedom in recognition of his achievements on and off the field.

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

Dance

Dance In Times Square Today

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Ailey comes to Times Square for a series of free outdoor dance classes led by Ailey Extension instructors and NYC dance artists. Classes are open to people of all ages and all levels of dance experience!. These dance workshops are presented by Ailey Extension and one will happen today June 2 at 5pm, Broadway & 46th St. The class is Broadway Jazz with Judine Somerville to register click here.

On Wednesday, June 7 at 6pm, at Broadway & 46th St LiveDance /Time: Study III with Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Company co-presented with New York Live Arts

Culminating its 40th Anniversary celebration, the world renowned Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Company makes its Times Square debut with /Time: Study III. This piéce d’occasion, featuring the outstanding performers of the company and guest musicians, marks the third annual New York Live Arts presentation in Times Square.

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Events

Midnight Moment: The Doors: Lizard Kings

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From June 1–30, 2023 | Nightly 11:57pm – 12am metallic crystal-ridged lizards prowl and skitter across the screens of Times Square in The Doors: Lizard Kings by Zach Blas. Featuring five fantastical computer-generated creatures choreographed across 63 distinct channels, June’s Midnight Moment stems from Blas’s 2019 immersive media installation The Doors, a work exploring psychedelia, drug use, artificial intelligence, and Silicon Valley’s connections to California counterculture from the 1960s.

Slimy, glowing, and covered with mineral elements modeled after nickeline and tungsten, each of the five rendered reptiles takes on distinct personalities derived from AI neural networks trained on a constellation of sources, including Aldous Huxley’s 1954 novel The Doors of Perception and the 1960s California psychedelic rock band The Doors. Blas modeled the creatures after the prehistoric Barbaturex morrisoni, a now extinct lizard named after The Doors frontman Jim Morrison, a play on Morrison’s epithet “The Lizard King” and a prominent symbol of psychedelic liberation in the 1960s. As the lizards move through black mirrored passageways, Blas sees them as traveling in time between the psychedelic culture of the past and the present.

The Doors: Lizard Kings also nods to the contemporary psychedelic trends of microdosing LSD and psilocybin mushrooms, as well as taking nootropics. Blas suggests that this new drug culture, popularized in the tech industry, re-engineers psychedelic experience to optimize labor, promising to “unlock” doors of the mind for workers  to labor faster and more efficiently. The Doors: Lizard Kings proposes a new generation of Barbaturex morrisoni, computational symbols for a 21st century psychedelia predicated on worker productivity, smart drugs, and AI hallucinations.

Film Credits
Zach Blas, The Doors: Lizard Kings 2019 / 2023
Originally commissioned by Edith-Russ-Haus für Medienkunst, Oldenburg, Germany; de Young Museum, San Francisco, US; and Van Abbemuseum, Eindhoven, Netherlands

  • Computer Graphics Supervisor: Harry Sanderson
  • Animation: Mikkel Aabenhuus Sørensen
  • Animation Assistant: Yan Eltovsky
  • Modeling and Visual Effects: Dayne Kolk
  • Simulation Assistant: Aslak Kjølås-Sæverud
  • Compositing: Felix Lee
  • Video Editor: Martin Gajc
  • Project Manager: Talia Golland
  • Project Assistant: Audrey Amman

Sound Credits
The original presentation of The Doors featured an aural accompaniment that oscillates between abstract soundscapes and poetry spoken in AI generated voice resembling Jim Morrison’s.

  • Machine Learning Engineers (video and poetry):  Ashwin D’Cruz and Christopher Tegho
  • Machine Learning Engineers (voice and music): Sam Parke-Wolfe and Cameron Thomas
  • Musicians: xin and Aya Sinclair
  • Supervising Sound Editor: Tom Sedgwick
  • Mix Engineer: Ben Hurd

Zach Blas (b. Point Pleasant, West Virginia) is an artist, filmmaker, and writer whose practice spans moving image, computation, theory, performance, and science fiction. Blas engages the materiality of computational technologies while also drawing out the philosophies and imaginaries lurking in artificial intelligence, biometric recognition, predictive policing, airport security, the Internet. Blas has exhibited, lectured, and held screenings at venues internationally, including the 12th Berlin Biennale, Walker Art Center, Tate Modern, British Art Show 9, 12th Gwangju Biennale, de Young Museum, the 68th Berlin International Film Festival, Los Angeles County Museum of Art, ICA London, Van Abbemuseum, e-flux, ZKM Center for Art and Media, and Australian Centre for Contemporary Art. His practice has been supported by a Creative Capital award in Emerging Fields, the Arts Council England, Edith-Russ-Haus für Medienkunst, and the UK Arts and Humanities Research Council. His work is in the collections of Museo Universitario Arte Contemporáneo, National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art, Seoul, and Whitney Museum of American Art. Blas’s practice has been written about and featured in Artforum, Frieze, ArtReview, BBC, The Guardian, and The New York Times. His 2021 artist monograph Unknown Ideals is published by Sternberg Press. Blas is an Assistant Professor of Visual Studies in the Daniels Faculty of Architecture, Landscape, and Design at the University of Toronto.

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Broadway

Pride in Times Square 2023

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Presented by Playbill and Times Square Alliance, Pride in Times Square is a weekend of FREE LGBTQIA+ events, panels, concerts and surprises taking place on Friday June 24 and Saturday June 25, 2022, in Times Square. Event timing and performers will be announced at a later date and subject to change. The event takes place rain or shine!

Pride in Times Square is made possible thanks to our sponsors: ViiV, Audible, and Jeep.

Friday June 24, 2022 Mainstage Programming

12:00PM – PRIDE IN TIMES SQUARE KICK-OFF
Join Playbill, Times Square Alliance, and leaders from Broadway and LGBTQIA+ Organizations as they kick off Pride in Times Square!

1:00PM – THE NATIONAL GAY & LESBIAN CHAMBER OF COMMERCE – PRIDE CELEBRATION
Join The National Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce (NGLCC) as they celebrate Pride on the Times Square Mainstage! Special guests include Justin Nelson, NGLCC Co-Founder & President, representatives from GrubHub and more!

2:00PM – AUSTIN ARTISTS PROJECT – PRIDE CELEBRATION
Infused with beloved Broadway and pop classics, interwoven with personal stories from Grammy and Tony recognized performers who all identify as part of the LGBTQ+ community, Austin Artists Project takes to the Main Stage with a Pride-filled celebration! Performers Include Nicole Talbot, Jada Cato, Mela Sarajane Dailey, Rocky Lane and a special appearance by Sky & Kai.

4:00PM – ALI FORNEY CENTER – PRIDE CELEBRATION
Join Marti Gould Cummings and AFC’s President/Executive Director Alexander Roque, as they celebrate Pride and share in AFC mission is to protect LGBTQ+ youths from the harms of homelessness and empower them with the tools needed to live independently. For more information on AFC: aliforneycenter.org

5:00PM – BEAU in Concert
Celebrate Pride with the all-new musical Beau, a raw, energetic, and heartfelt musical that celebrates family, music, queerness and love. BEAU in Concert performers include Ben Rosenberry, Aisha Jackson and Saint Aubyn.

6:00PM – NEW YORK CITY GAY MEN’S CHORUS – PRIDE CELEBRATION
The New York City Gay Men’s Chorus is a world-class, world-renowned New York institution and a pioneering voice for the LGBTQ community. Comprised of more than 260 talented singers of various ages, backgrounds, and experiences, NYCGMC are fearless champions for love, equality, and acceptance. http://www.nycgmc.org/. Under the helm of Artistic Director Jared Brayton Bollenbacher, performers include David Warner, Edwin Yangga, Glenn Nobel, Helio Sepulveda Zornosa, Jon Shepherd, Nicolas Jourdan, Will Martorano, Brian Bice, Don King, Diante Aiken, Giamliero Bartoli, Jeffrey Meyer, Jordan Barbakoff, Jose Covarrubias, Patrick Leader, Alexander Scholar, Antonio Valverde, Brian Scott, Jim Vivyan, Jonah von der Embse, Ralph Passabte, Russell John’s, Stephen Brown, Adam Barrett, Ashton Giese, Bruce Ward, Charlie Rickle, Doug Rosensweig, Matthew Osborne, Robert Featherstone, Ty Nigel, Adam Walker, Arthur Broat, Mark Schall, Matthew Androsiglio, Steven Chaiken, Artemis Mendoza, David, Lorenzo Lopez, Lukas Weiss, Branden Holzer, Dario Bolfi, Frank Stabcati, Herb Rubenstein, Juan Colon, Nick Prior, Techs Robinson, Austin Amarillo, James Knobloch, Matt Koplik, Phil Bialer, Takefumi Semba and Trevor Chauvin, with Aaron Dai providing accompaniment.

7:00PM – GLAAD – PRIDE CELEBRATION
Join singer/songwriter Neil Davis Scibelli and GLAAD Representatives Sarah Kennedy and Jose Useche as they celebrate rewriting the script for LGBTQ acceptance! GLAAD is proud to tackle tough issues and shape the narrative and provoke dialogue that leads to cultural change. As they work to protect all that has been accomplished and create a world where everyone can live the life they love, hear more as they take the stage!

Friday June 24, 2022 Playbill Piano Bar Programming

12:30PM – JOEY CONTRERAS in Concert
Joey Contreras is a musical theatre pop songwriter, Fred Ebb Award finalist and a two-time Jonathan Larson Grant finalist. Celebrate Joey’s music with special guests: Brian Russell Carey, Deon’te Goodman, Amanda Lopez, Henry Platt, David Socolar, and Charlie Fusari!

1:30PM & 2:30PM – PLAYBILL PRIDE MIX Piano Sing-Along
Join pianist Brandon James Gwinn at the Sing for Hope piano for a pride-filled sing along of Broadway showtunes that celebrate all-things PRIDE!

4:30PM – AUSTIN ARTISTS PROJECT: SING OUT!
Infused with beloved Broadway and pop classics, interwoven with personal stories from Grammy and Tony recognized performers who all identify as part of the LGBTQ+ community, Austin Artists Project takes to the Piano Stage with even more Pride! Performers Include Nicole Talbot, Jada Cato, Mela Sarajane Dailey, Rocky Lane, special appearances by Sky & Kai, with Todd Olson on piano.

5:30PM – JJ MALEY in Concert
Join JJ Maley, a trans nonbinary Tony-Nominated producer, actor, writer, director, and consultant, and “Team Starkid’s” Esther Fallick as they take the stage telling stories and singing songs that celebrate Pride with Farrah Rothman on piano.

Saturday June 25, 2022 Mainstage Programming

10:00AM – HEAD OVER HEELS: Pride Sing-Along Concert
HEAD OVER HEELS is a bold musical comedy set to the music of the iconic 1980’s all-female rock band The Go-Go’s. A hilarious and exuberant celebration of love, join cast members from the all-new Gateway Performing Arts Center production of HEAD OVER HEELS in celebration! Performers include: Jennifer Byrne, Renee Marie Titus, Molly Rushing, Gina Ward, Josh Canfield, Turner Riley, Lincoln Belford, Shannon Conboy, Jesse Jones, Maya Kazzaz, Ashley Klinger, and Vincent Ortega with Andrew Haile Austin (MD/keys), Joe Loschiavo (guitar), Rich Adams (guitar), Ricky Enderle(bass) and Andrew Warren (drums).

11:00AM – A STRANGE LOOP: Pride Panel
Celebrate the 2022 Tony Award-winning Best Musical, A STRANGE LOOP on the Pride in Times Square Main Stage! Listen to Pulitzer/Tony Award-winner Michael R. Jackson and the cast share their experiences in this groundbreaking musical and their experiences as part of the LGBTQIA+ community. Bold and heartfelt in its truth-telling, A STRANGE LOOP is the big, Black, and queer-ass Great American Musical for all!

12:00PM – TABOO: Pride Sing-Along Concert
Taboo the Musical is a love story set against the artistic backdrop of the New Romantic period in 1980s England, interweaving autobiographical elements from the lives of Leigh Bowery, and Boy George. This concert will reunite original Broadway cast members Euan Morton (Boy George), Liz McCartney (Big Sue), Cary Shields (Marcus) and Sarah Uriarte Berry (Nicola), as well as members of the original Broadway ensemble, Lori Holmes Clark, Alex Quiroga, Denise Summerford and Greg Treco. Tony-nominated costume designer, Bobby Pearce, will coordinate the wardrobe including some original pieces from the show. The band includes Kevin Kuhn, Ray Marchica and Steve Millhouse and the concert is Directed & Conducted by original Music Supervisor and Arranger, John McDaniel.

1:00PM – FOWL PLAY in Concert
FOWL PLAY is a new musical comedy about two Broadway wannabes who are hired to write an apology musical for a homophobic fried chicken company. When the fast-talking CEO, Kimberly Chickadee (RuPaul’s Drag Race star Rosé), promises a major payout and an opportunity to build bridges with their scorned community, Archie and Xander bite off more than they can chew when they discover the top-secret ingredients of rainbow capitalism… and those juicy chicken sandwiches. Concert performers include Billy Recce, Yoni Weiss, JJ Niemann, Murphy Taylor Smith, Sarah Kleist, Lauren Robinson, Megan Griggs, Joseph Allen, Zach Bravo, Ashley LaLonde, Bryan Munar, Todd Buonopane, Jacob Simon, Noah Virgile, Chris Isolano, and Hannah Skokan with Jon Audric Nelson on keys, Joe Novello on drums and Jack Beal on bass.

2:00PM – THE PROM: Pride Sing-Along Concert
Join original cast members Caitlin Kinnunen, Gabi Campo and Isabella McCalla as they bring a sing along of THE PROM to the heart of Broadway: Times Square! Pianist Brandon James Gwinn and the cast members are set, ready: It’s Time to Dance!

3:30PM – HEDWIG AND THE ANGRY INCH: Pride Sing-Along Concert
HEDWIG AND THE ANGRY INCH is the landmark musical by John Cameron Mitchell and Stephen Trask that is “groundbreaking and undoubtedly ahead of its time” (Entertainment Weekly). This genre-bending, fourth-wall-smashing musical sensation, with a pulsing score and electrifying performances, tells the story of one of the most unique characters to ever hit the stage. Winner of four 2014 Tony Awards® including Best Musical Revival, HEDWIG AND THE ANGRY INCH comes to Times Square with Mason Alexander Park, Stephen Trask, Sean Liliquist, Justin Craig and Andres Valbuena ready to ROCK The Stage!

4:30PM – AUDIBLE PRIDE CELEBRATION
Presented by Audible, join stage and screen star Shakina Nayfack, her band and special guests as they celebrate Pride with selections from Shakina’s award-winning solo show MANIFEST PUSSY, and discussion of the groundbreaking CHONBURI INTERNATIONAL HOTEL & BUTTERFLY CLUB. Audible proudly continues the tradition of partnering with Pride and elevating voices that deserve to be heard. This celebration is sure to be remembered and celebrated!

6:00PM – THE BIG BROADWAY DISCO
Join Playbill as New York and Times Square celebrates Pride like never before. Times Square will “ignite the night” with THE BIG BROADWAY DISCO – a large-scale street party that invites revelers to dance through Times Square to classic and contemporary Broadway songs and performances – all with a disco flare! For more information, check out the Big Broadway Disco Homepage!

Saturday June 25, 2022 Playbill Piano Bar Programming

10:30AM & 11:30AM – PLAYBILL PRIDE MIX Piano Sing-Along
Join pianist Brandon James Gwinn at the Sing for Hope piano for a pride-filled sing along of Broadway showtunes that celebrate all-things PRIDE!

1:30PM – FUN HOME: Piano Sing-Along
Join pianist Drew Wutke at the Sing for Hope piano for a sing along of one of the most groundbreaking productions ever to hit Broadway: FUN HOME. Winner of five 2015 Tony Awards including Best Musical and based on Alison Bechdel’s best-selling graphic memoir, sing along to favorites including “Ring of Keys”, “Come To The Fun Home”, “Days and Days” and celebrate all-things FUN HOME!

2:30PM – LA CAGE AUX FOLLES: Piano Sing-Along
Join pianist Drew Wutke at the Sing for Hope for a LA CAGE AUX FOLLES Sing Along! Based on the French play of the same name, the musical by Harvey Fierstein and Jerry Herman tells of a flamboyant gay couple who must pretend to be straight for one night and the madness that ensues. With classic songs like “I Am What I Am”, “Song on the Sand”, and more, get swept away in this Tony-Award winning, pride-filled musical.

4:00PM – TRANS ENTERTAINMENT GUILD – Pride Cabaret Celebration
The Trans Entertainment Guild (TEG) is a recent addition to the arts advocacy community dedicated to improving the lives and working conditions of trans, gender expansive, and gender non-conforming professionals in entertainment. All are welcome to join as TEG celebrates Pride with an all-TGNC group performing selections from THE CIVILITY OF ALBERT CASHIER with book by GLAAD nominated writer Jay Paul Deratany, music by trans Americana artist Joe Stevens and Emmy-nominee Keaton Wooden (lyrics by Stevens, Wooden, and Deratany), WE ARE THE TIGERS by L.A. Stage Alliance Ovation winner and Jeff nominee Preston Max Allen, among other works by TGNC musical theatre writers. This event will engage and uplift our audience and together, we will celebrate trans lives and liberation for everyone. Performers include Achilles Mulkey (he/they), Áy Vi Luu (they/she), DeShawn Jenkins (they/them), Dexter Warren (he/they), Fin Gagnon (they/he), Imani Russell (they/them), Jace ‘n Ziev (they/ziv), Kristyn Michele(they/them), Lily Ali-Oshatz (any pronouns), Mark Mendez Muñoz (they/he), Nikomeh Anderson (they/he/Nik), Parker Wallis (they/she/fae), Salem Corwin (he/him), and Stevie Jae Davis (they/them). The concert is directed by Mika Kauffman (they/ze/he), music directed by Nicole D’Angelo(she/they), and additional accompaniment by guitarist and singer/songwriter Will Shishmanian.

5:00PM – GIRLFRIEND FROM HELL in Concert
GIRLFRIEND FROM HELL: THE MUSICAL is a hilarious homage to the “best/worst” 80’s movies, and a wild night that you won’t soon forget. After being pushed over the edge by the most popular kids at school, four-eyed wallflower, Maggie Miller, cries to the heavens for help. But it is Satan who hears her cry, and transforms her into a big-haired, high-heeled, foul mouthed, sex bomb rocker who’s hungry for revenge! These hilarious musical beams pride and positivity, with a touch of Satan’s sass! Participants include Tara Martinez and Giuliana DePietro, with book/music writer Sean Matthew Whiteford, and director Rachel Klein, as well as Lena Gabrielle on piano and Mark Garthwait on guitar.

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Entertainment

Jenga Tournament Brings Cash and Fun To NYC

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The National Blocking Association™ is holding New York City’s most epic Jenga® tournament on Saturday, June 17 at 1pm at the Sheraton New York Times Square. Teams will battle for a $10,000 top prize and major bragging rights. Who will level up? Who will block away a champion? Whose dreams will be toppled by a sneeze? You’ll have to wait and see!

Competitors ages 10 and up will wiggle, tap and precariously balance their way through a series of gravity-defying battles. The winning team will take home $10,000 while the runner up bags $2,500. The third-place team gets $1,000 and fourth place nabs $500. That’s a lot of blocks!

The entry fee is $65 per “team.” A team can be a solo player gunning to take the top prize all for themselves, or a group of two to four players total.

Get creative: Along with cash prizes and trophies for our champions, we will also award teams with the most creative/hilarious names, and best costumes, too!

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News

Say Good-Bye To Margaritaville Resort Times Square

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Margaritaville Resort Times Square is about to be forced on the auction block. The Alden Group provided a $57M loan two years ago to the 234-key hotel and now they want out. The hotel is located at 560 Seventh Ave., has given a notice of a foreclosure auction set for July 10.

Sharif El-Gamal’s Soho Properties defaulted on its payments for Margaritaville, which opened two summers ago with a concert by tJimmy Buffett, in March.

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