Tis’ the season….North Pole Express Launch, New York City’s Only Christmas Lights Bus Experience
TopView, New York’s innovative experience provider, is pleased to announce its well-loved Christmas Lights NYC bus tour. The North Pole Express is the easiest, safest, and funniest way for locals and tourists to see New York City’s famous Christmas lights. This magical trip has now evolved and includes new storytelling, seasonal lighting, and gifting surprises.
The North Pole Express is a magical must-see experience. This Christmas bus adventure starts with warm hot chocolate and delicious cookies while passengers listen to elves tell a captivating Christmas story. The bus tour then takes a journey through New York City for kids of all ages to see over ten dazzling holiday lights displays from the Saks Fifth Avenue Holiday Light Show and Rockefeller Christmas Tree and Radio City Music Hall to the Cartier Holiday Lights and Bryant Park Winter Village.
On the tour passengers will have the opportunity to sing Christmas carols, spend quality time with Santa, write their Christmas list and receive a sleigh bell as a gift from him while they tell him their seasonal wishes. Children are encouraged to wear their pajamas and coats and will receive a warm Christmas hat and winter blanket to keep cozy on the open-top Upper Deck. Onboard kids will also meet the Express conductor and one of Santa’s elves who bring a fun narration and festive merriment to the journey.
The North Pole Express will board and depart this year at the centrally based New York Public Library on 476 Fifth Avenue (42nd St between 5th and 6th ave) near Grand Central and Bryant Park. The ideal location for anyone coming into the city and wanting to include the festively decorated Stephen A. Schwarzman Public Library building, The Rockefeller Ice Rink, and the Winter Village at Bryant Park.
The North Pole Express comes in two package options: a Standard or Enhanced experience. The Standard is a 45-minute trip, 4-mile route, the Express is approx. 1 hour and 15 minutes. The North Pole Express runs from November 12, 2022, to January 01, 2023. To stay on top of scheduled times visit the TopView North Pole Express website or download the TopView App where a QR code and journey information enables boarding via an e-pass so no print-outs are needed.
Other Christmas activities TopView is hosting this holiday season are it’s well-loved Event Cruises NYC Christmas brunch cruise as well as its Kids Christmas Cruise. These elevated New York holiday cruises offer stunning views and curated experiences. Fun seekers will be able to treat themselves and their friends and families to a delicious three-course festive brunch, sip on a mimosa or champagne while sailing by the most iconic NYC spots such as the Statue of Liberty and Brooklyn Bridge. Live music and holiday tunes will be played by a DJ on board to make the occasion festive. All Event Cruise NYC guests are encouraged to come onboard festively dressed up for the occasion.
For young kids, there is a Kids Christmas Santa Fun Cruise. This year’s December activity involves time with Santa, face painting, Christmas activities, festive music, and games. The package includes Christmas-theme crafts where kids can decorate their own gingerbread house while enjoying sweet treats such as chocolate chip cookies, brownies, and cupcakes with hot chocolate. Other creative additions are joining Santa’s elves for Christmas carol singing and live storytelling. Parents get a complimentary glass of sparkling wine along with cocktails available for purchase on board. Kids will enjoy all these elements while taking in New York’s beautiful skyline during the 1 hour and 30-minute journey.
For late-night experience seekers, TopView’s Parties Cruise is launching its first ‘#SantaSlay’ party. This late-night Winter Wonderland skyline cruise includes a range of creative Christmas cocktails which speak to the holiday season as well as fun holiday party features. The kissing corner complete with a Mistletoe Insta Wall, snowfall elements, and dazzling dancing Santas is all available for anyone who wants to ring in the holiday season in a memorable way with friends.
Last but not least, Topview’s Bike Rental Central Park is offering a limited edition range of bike tours on Christmas-themed bikes on December 16, 17, and 18 which are lit up with Christmas lights and holiday decor. A Christmas elf tour guide will be available at 4 and 6 pm to take bikers on guided dusk tours which involve the best decorated holiday apartments and restaurants near Central Park. Dress up warm and enjoy seeing the city lights by bike and learn more about Uptown Christmas highlights while singing Christmas carols along the way.
Natasha Bedingfield Thrills at Frederick Anderson’s Nebula Fashion Show
We love the nightlife!
The thrill of old-school New York City energy came out swinging in a glorious way last week during Frederick Anderson’s 2024 Resort collection presentation.
On May 24, pop sensation Natasha Bedingfield opened up the beautiful runway at the fantastic hotspot Nebula in Midtown Manhattan. Wearing a bold crochet dress by the designer, the music matched her luxurious look and set the tone for an electric night.
The 33-look collection was seen by a chic and notable group of uptown clients and downtown personalities including Mayor Eric Adams, Nebula owner Richie Romero, Nicole Miller, Peter Som, Young Paris, Consuelo Vanderbilt Costin and Janna Bullock amongst well-heeled crowd.
Photos by David Warren
Dance In Times Square Today
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.
Midnight Moment: The Doors: Lizard Kings
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.
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.
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
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.
Out of Town
A Dancing Dolly
Hello, Dolly! is a 1964 musical with lyrics and music by Jerry Herman and a book by Michael Stewart, based on Thornton Wilder’s 1938 farce The Merchant of Yonkers, which Wilder revised and retitled The Matchmaker in 1955. The musical follows the story of Dolly Gallagher Levi, a strong-willed matchmaker, as she travels to Yonkers, New York, to find a match for the miserly “well-known unmarried half-a-millionaire” Horace Vandergelder. The show, directed and choreographed by Gower Champion and produced by David Merrick, moved to Broadway in 1964, winning 10 Tony Awards, including Best Musical. These awards set a record which the play held for 37 years. The show album Hello, Dolly! An Original Cast Recording was inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame in 2002. There is no denying that Jerry Herman never wrote a bad song and that you will go home singing at least one if not several of these wonderfully tuneful songs.
In this neck of the woods, Stephen Casey is well-known for his high- stepping choreography and in the Act II production of Hello, Dolly!, he does not disappoint. Everyone in this show dances. The dance numbers are many and lengthy. And The Waiters Gallop number at the Harmonia Gardens Restaurant is especially applause worthy. The pared down chorus is just as proficient at singing as they are at dancing. And the small stage at Act II is ingeniously used to give an appearance of a much bigger space. Jenny Eisehower is a very lively and likeable Dolly Levi, in contrast to Scott Langdon’s delightfully cantankerous Mr. Vandergelder. Ms. Eisenhower’s statuesque height plays well off the shorter Mr. Langdon.We know she is a woman who is always in control. Elyse Langley displays a mature soprano rendering of “Ribbons Down my Back” as Irene Malloy. Lee Slobotkin is quite endearing as Barnaby Tucker and Jeremy Konopka is a young Tommy Tune with his longer than you can believe it legs.
The costumes by Millie Hiibel were bright and playful and worked in tandem with the simple set design by Dirk Durossette. The score is fully orchestrated though, unfortunately it’s in the “can” which for me takes away from the excitement you get from a live musical.
Unfortunately, I did not enjoy the show as much as I would have had the minor characters not been instructed or simply encouraged to mug to the audience. Every time this happened it brought me right out of the show. In 1812’s producton of The Play That Goes Wrong many of the actors were mugging their pants off and playing it over the top — but they were forgiven because they were supposed to be a terrible community theatre company.
And yet, if you like Jerry Herman and a lot of dancing you will enjoy this show and understand why it’s been revived so many times.
Tickets are available online at act2.org, by calling the Act II Box Office at 215-654-0200, or in-person at the Box Office at 56 E. Butler Ave., Ambler, PA. The Box Office is open Mon-Sat, 2 p.m. – 6 p.m. Student tickets are $15 and group discounts are available.
Hello, Dolly! Directed and Choreographed by Stephen Casey. Running now through June 18, 2023 at Act II Playhouse 56 E. Butler Ave., Ambler, PA 19002
League of Professional Theatre Women’s 10th Annual Women Stage The World March
The League of Professional Theatre Women (LPTW) will hold its 10th Annual “Women Stage the World March” — a Suffragette-inspired project to educate the public about the role of women in the theatre industry — on Saturday, June 17. The march will begin at noon, at Shubert Alley and weave through Times Square and the Broadway Theatre District, wrapping up at about 2 p.m.
“The event is FREE and LPTW invites all theatre women and allies to join us as we increase awareness, lift our voices, and advocate for more opportunities for women in theatre,” said Ludovica Villar-Hauser, Co-President of LPTW.
“The Women Stage the World March is designed to educate the public about the role women play in creating theatre and the barriers they face as men continue to outnumber women by 4 to 1 in key roles such as playwright, director and designers. Women buy 67% of the tickets and represent 65% of the audience, yet 80% of the storytelling on stage is shaped by men’s voices,” said Katrin Hilbe, Co-President of LPTW.
Handouts during the March will prompt ticket-buyers to ask three questions as they make buying decisions: (1) Who wrote, directed and designed this play? (2) What is this theatre’s track record in giving opportunities to women? (3) How can you spread the word and promote women’s voices?
“All participants are encouraged to dress as their favorite historical theatre woman, or dress all in white. March participants will gather at Shubert Alley starting at 11:30 AM, in preparation for the start of the march at noon. Women Stage the World sashes and signs will be provided, as supplies last,” noted Penelope Deen, LPTW member and organizer of the event. Those interested in participating in the event please R.S.V.P. at: https://www.theatrewomen.org/women-stage-the-world or contact Penelope Deen at: Womenstagetheworld@Theatrewomen.org
LPTW Co-President Ludovica Villar-Hauser added: “The League of Professional Theatre Women stands alongside the Writers Guild of America (WGA) as they demand fair wages and take action to ensure more protections for artists. We encourage LPTW members to find a time to join the WGA on the picket lines this month as the strike continues. Women writers are the future of the film and television industry, just as they lead the way in theatre. LPTW supports the women on the frontlines of this movement as they call for long overdue change. We are stronger together.”
For the past 10 years LPTW members, affiliated union members, theatre artists and their allies have hit the streets in a March reminiscent of the Suffragette parades of the early 20th Century, with some marchers dressed in traditional suffrage garb and colors. Like the Suffragettes before them, participants in the Women Stage the World March empower women and men to become aware, take action and influence others.
The League of Professional Theatre Women (LPTW) is a membership organization championing women in theatre and advocating for increased equity and access for all theatre women. Our programs and initiatives create community, cultivate leadership, and increase opportunities and recognition for women working in theatre. The organization provides support, networking and collaboration mechanisms for members, and offers professional development and educational opportunities for all theatre women and the general public. LPTW celebrates the historic contributions and contemporary achievements of women in theatre, both nationally and around the globe, and advocates for parity in employment, compensation and recognition for women theatre practitioners through industry-wide initiatives and public policy proposals. LPTW is celebrating its 40th Anniversary in 2023.
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