Showing posts with label Entertainment. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Entertainment. Show all posts

12/9/14

Real Broadway Magic

I saw a magical show the other night. No, literally there was magic in it. Lots and lots of mind-defying magic! The Illusionists: Witness the Impossible opened it's six-week engagement at the Marriott Marquis Theatre (1535 Broadway) last week as part of a 30-city U.S. tour.


Photo courtesy of The Illusionists
This show is way more than simple pick-a-card-any-card tricks (though you will be shocked at just what these illusionists can do with a simple--or not so simple--deck of cards). The show’s seven stars, each a master in their own field, are Yu Ho-Jin (The Manipulator), Dan Sperry (The Anti-Conjuror), Jeff Hobson (The Trickster), Andrew Basso (The Escapologist), Kevin James (The Inventor), Aaron Crow (The Warrior), and Adam Trent (The Futurist).

Each has his own unique personality, whether flamboyant and sparkly, creepy and "alternative," mad scientist, or boy-next-door, but all are unequivocally skilled. There was tons of audience participation, so if going on stage is something that scares you, I wouldn't advocate sitting on the aisles. When the woman behind us got picked for a particularly freaky trick, I couldn't help but laugh along with her friends and feel like I knew her. She was a really good sport.

My favorite was probably Basso who recreated Houdini's water-torture chamber trick, making my heart pound incredibly hard as he was lowered into a locked vault filled with water with his hands in cuffs. Talk about something that your mother wouldn't want you doing!

Tickets start at $67 for performances through January 4 and are available here. Although some pyrotechnics are used, this show would be great for older kids!

4/30/14

It All Went On Like You Like It

Last week we wrote about a special, star-studded, one-night-only concert event of Like You Like It at 54 Below. The evening was the epitome of a perfect night out in New York. There was great food (try the risotto!), wine, and lively entertainment by some of Broadway's top talent.


Here are some photos from the event:

Rebecca Faulkenberry sings "Be a Little Wild"
Sam Underwood and Jenna Leigh Green sing "Easy Way Out"
Dana Steingold and A.J. Shively sing "Creating a Monster"
Lyricist Sammy Buck talks about the show
Real life husband and wife duo Laura Osnes and Nathan Johnson sing "All of the Above"
Laura Osnes and Nathan Johnson
We weren't kidding about the chocolate dessert! Try the Dark Chocolate Tart!

54 Below on Urbanspoon

6/13/13

Savor That Craft Beer

I don't know if the concept of 'craft beer' is really all that new or if it just seems to be getting a lot more press in recent years, but either way, we think it's awesome. With all of the craft beer festivals popping up all over the place, these unique libations have many pedestals to stand on. The latest event to hit the Big Apple, presented by the Brewers Association, is Savor: An American Craft Beer & Food Experience taking place this weekend June 14-15 at the Altman Building and Metropolitan Pavillion.


The event comes to NYC after five consecutive years in the nation’s capital. Attendees will enjoy beers from 76 small and independent U.S. breweries, hailing from 31 different states and representing all regions of the country. Along with tasting some of the finest craft beers, attendees will enjoy a diverse array of food pairings designed by Chef Adam Dulye, co-owner/chef of San Francisco’s The Monk’s Kettle and James Beard Award-semifinalist Abbot’s Cellar, in collaboration with a panel of chefs and Cicerones. Sonnier & Castle will serve as the event caterer.

Savor will also feature salons each of the nights focusing on specific beer concepts such as:

  • Cajun and Creole Artisanal Foods and Bieres in Quadraphonic Sensaround
  • West Coast Beer, East Coast Food
  • Blending Barrel Aged Sour Beers
  • Several Shades of Lager: An Exploration and Explanation of Lager Beers

For tickets, click here. See you there this weekend. I hope you're ready to get your drink on!

4/29/13

Don't Hyde From Broadway's Latest Thriller

Broadway's Spring 2013 season is chock full of surprises, but nothing I've seen has been as thrilling as the revival of Jekyll & Hyde. Starring Constantine Maroulis of American Idol fame and the powerful R&B artist Deborah Cox, the show transcends typical theater boundaries while telling the story of a scientist struggling with the duality of life's good and evil aspects. Maroulis plays a suitable Dr. Jekyll but is transformative as Hyde and almost seems to present himself as two different people. Meanwhile, when Cox sings just about anything, you feel yourself unable to even thing about anything else, her voice is just that good.


I had the pleasure of being invited to see the show a few weeks ago with a reception at The Paramount Hotel beforehand. While I wouldn't recommend this show to everyone (ie: children and people looking for a traditional la-dee-da musical), I was definitely entertained and left with much to talk and think about once the curtain fell.

Jekyll & Hyde is only on Broadway as a limited engagement so get your tickets now! Use the discount code HYDE to save up to 30% on tickets through May 26. For Monday - Thursday shows, orchestra/front mezz tickets will be $89 (reg. $125) and for Friday - Sunday shows they will be $99 (reg. $135 - $142). Use this discount by visiting Ticketmaster.com, calling (877) 250-2929 or mention this offer to the Marquis Theatre Box Office (46th St between Broadway and 8th Ave).

2/14/13

AWESOME ALERT: The Iconic NYC Jazz Club You Knew Existed But Have Never Been To

Jazz clubs. They are about as New York as it comes (well, if you don't count New Orleans). But have you every actually step foot in one? If you have, give yourself a pat on the back. If not, you owe it to yourself to tap your toes and sip a glass of wine at one of the city's musical gems.


My friend invited me along to the speakeasy-like Smalls Jazz Club, tucked into a basement space on West 10th Street, for their free Tuesday night show. I honestly went in with no expectations. I'm not ashamed to admit that I never liked (or thought I liked) jazz because I associated it with old people. I don't exactly know where that came from, and yes, older people do seemingly like jazz, but I digress.


When we walked in, a trio comprised of the piano, guitar and bass were playing upbeat tunes and taking turns showing off crazy skill with their solos. I know practically nothing about music theory or "why" music is "good," but it sure as heck sounded amazing. We grabbed seats a few rows from the front and had fun watching the cat (I'm told her name is Mina) sleep on the piano with intermittent breaks for cleaning herself.

Mina (Photo Courtesy Rachel Reed)

The music was so good that we decided to stay for the paid show at 9:30. Good thing we did too! For only $20, we got an intimate concert with the Scott Hamilton quartet, a pretty big deal in the jazz world (or so the Internet tells me).

Scott Hamilton Quartet

You can find the Smalls Jazz Club schedule here. Most shows are either indicated as "no cover" (aka FREE!) or cost $10 or $20. Looking for last minute Valentine plans tonight? The club is featuring 2 quartets and a quintet playing late into the night and I'm sure your date will be pleasantly surprised.