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65 Things to Do in New York City During Spring 2014

See Merrill Garbus perform as tUnE-yArDs on May 7 at Rough Trade.EXPAND
See Merrill Garbus perform as tUnE-yArDs on May 7 at Rough Trade.
Holly Andres

DANCE
Paul Taylor Dance Company
Through March 30
The last master of American modern dance, now in his ninth decade, Taylor celebrates his brilliant troupe’s 60th anniversary with two new pieces and 19 repertory masterworks. Fusing contemporary wildness and sturdy traditional technique, they’ll take your breath away. David H. Koch Theater, 20 Lincoln Center Plaza, davidhkochtheater.com --Elizabeth Zimmer

BOOKS
Congo: The Epic History of a People
by David Van Reybrouck
March 25
The one thing everyone seems to know about the Congo is that it’s a gigantic war-torn mess. But Belgian renaissance man Van Reybrouck — an archeologist, reporter, playwright, and poet — has set out to catalogue in epic fashion the forces that created it. The resulting 656-page tome displays the narrative aplomb that arises from Van Reybrouck’s background as an artist as well as his post-colonial consciousness: “I decided it would only be worth doing if I were able to include as many Congolese voices as possible,” he writes. But how to create such a history in a land with an oral tradition and a life expectancy of 45? Ecco, 656 pp., $29.99. --James Hannaham

THEATER
Red Velvet
Performances begin March 25
This is not a play about a cupcake, but don’t let that disappoint you. A great success in its London premiere, Lolita Chakrabarti’s biographical drama concerns Ira Aldridge, a celebrated African-American actor of the 19th century and the first black actor to play Othello. Adrian Lester, Chakrabarti’s husband and a clever, kinetic, immensely appealing performer, again plays Aldridge in this production from Tricycle artistic director Indhu Rubasingham. Will audiences love it wisely and too well? St. Ann’s Warehouse, 29 Jay Street, Brooklyn, stannswarehouse.org. --Alexis Soloski

ART
“When the Stars Begin to Fall: Imagination and the American South”
March 27–June 29
An extensive selection of outsider art (loosely defined) from the past 50 years looks at black life in America, with particular attention to the South. Pieces made by the self-taught, such as Joe Minter’s marvelous junkyard sculpture, mix with boundary-crossing work from insiders, including Kevin Beasley’s installation of sounds recorded at his Virginia family home and Kara Walker’s silhouetted puppets depicting slave-trade cruelty. The Studio Museum in Harlem, 144 West 125th Street, studiomuseum.org. --Robert Shuster

THEATER
The Heir Apparent
Performances begin March 28
Where there’s a will, there’s a French farce just waiting to be updated by David Ives. Ives, who treated Classic Stage audiences to School for Lies, an adaptation of Molière’s The Misanthrope, returns to the theater with this version of a lesser-known Jean-François Regnard play. Directed by John Rando, it concerns an ambitious young man promised a tidy inheritance from his uncle. Trouble is, that uncle insists on staying alive. Classic Stage Company, 136 East 13th Street, classicstage.org. --Soloski

MUSIC
Kronos Quartet 40th Anniversary Celebration
March 28
The string quartet that busted open the idea of what a string quartet could be celebrates its 40th year with this Carnegie Hall date. The rundown of composers they’ll play — Laurie Anderson, Philip Glass, Bryce Dessner, for starters — highlights just how Kronos has helped shaped the contemporary repertoire. Minimalist OG Terry Riley has prepared a new piece for the group to premiere, too. Carnegie Hall, 881 Seventh Avenue, carnegiehall.org. --Seth Colter Walls

ART
Tortured Dust
March 28
Throughout his career in the avant-garde, Stan Brakhage transformed footage he shot at home into unsettling cinematic poetry. His celebrated 1959 short, Window Water Baby Moving, portrays the birth of his first child with jittery editing and graphic close-ups. The shadowy Wedlock House: An Intercourse (1959), ostensibly about sex, looks like a horror-flick preview. His most involved effort was the rarely screened Tortured Dust (1984), a s ilent, 90-minute sequence of memory-like fragments that record the filmmaker’s family in their rustic cabin. The length is indulgent, but Brakhage considered the deeply personal work his magnum opus.
Anthology Film Archives, 32 Second Avenue, anthologyfilmarchives.org. --Shuster

FILM
The Raid 2
March 28
In a genre that hadn’t evolved much in years, Gareth Evans’s ferocious Indonesian martial-arts ballet The Raid: Redemption redefined the action movie much as The Matrix once did for science fiction. With the bar set incredibly high, rookie cop Rama (the wholly impressive Iko Uwais) returns to kick it even higher in this bloodier, brawnier crime saga, which expands everything: the set pieces, choreography, production values, even the plot. CG effects be damned; it’s amazing no stuntmen were killed in the making. Sony Pictures Classics, in limited release, sonyclassics.com. --Aaron Hillis

FILM
Finding Vivian Maier
March 28
She was born in NYC in 1926, spent her childhood in France, and later led a quiet life as a Chicago nanny before dying a recluse in 2009. Vivian Maier was also one of the great street photographers of the 20th century, which nobody knew until more than 100,000 of her negatives were unearthed at an auction. Co-directed by lucky finder John Maloof, this incredible and haunting investigation into Maier’s life, posthumous fame, obsession, and mental illness is at its best when her images bloom for the big screen. Sundance Selects, in limited release, ifcfilms.com. --Aaron Hillis

FILM
“Tout Truffaut”
Mach 28–April 17
That poignant freeze-frame on Jean-Pierre Léaud closing The 400 Blows. Jeanne Moreau mischievously cheating in a footrace against Jules and Jim. The sly merging of comedy, tragedy, and noir that is Shoot the Piano Player. Though critic-turned-auteur François Truffaut’s body of work was cut short by his death at 52, the many miracles in the French New Wave co-founder’s inventive body of work live on in Film Forum’s comprehensive 27-film series. Film Forum, 209 West Houston Street, filmforum.org. --Hillis

 

THEATER
Your Mother’s Copy of the Kama Sutra
Performances begin March 28
Having relationship trouble? You could see a couples counselor. Or you could purchase some marital aids at a West Village boutique. Or you could just break up. But the couple at the center of Kirk Lynn’s play has a more original idea: They decide to re-create their sexual history with each other. Lynn — a canny, stylish writer who often works with the Austin troupe Rude Mechs — brings this erotic comedy to Playwrights Horizons, under Anne Kauffman’s direction. Playwrights Horizons, 416 West 42nd Street, playwrightshorizons.org. --Soloski

BOOKS
Mr. Loverman
by Bernardine Evaristo
April 1
Antiguan immigrant Barrington Jedediah Walker lives in London, but he also lives a lie. Though he’s 74 years old and married, he has for many years been carrying on a very clandestine love affair with his best friend, Morris. All this time, what has he told his wife, who thinks he’s a womanizer? “Dear, I ain’t never slept with another woman.” As his marriage self-destructs, Barrington sees an opportunity to be with the man he loves, but after such protracted misery in this comic, touching book, happiness seems distant and frightening. Akashic Books, 300 pp., $20.96. --Hannaham

BOOKS
A Few Seconds of Radiant Filmstrip: A Memoir of Seventh Grade
by Kevin Brockmeier
April 1
Award-winning fabulist Brockmeier turns his pen (well, laptop, probably) toward one of the weirdest, most mystifying, emotional subjects in the world: seventh grade. The tightly focused memoir resonates oddly with the tales of apocalypse, surreal landscapes, and eerie purgatories he has imagined in previous novels and stories. Instead of making the strange familiar, this one does the reverse, not least because it’s a memoir written in the third person: “He has a fantasy dating back to preschool that all the mirrors in his house are secretly windows, magic spyglasses for the girls in his class.” Pantheon, 208 pp., $24. --Hannaham

THEATER
The Velocity of Autumn
Performances begin April 1
The leafy streets of Park Slope are unlikely to suffer much in the way of bomb threats, particularly as the de Blasio family has now decamped for Gracie Mansion. But in Eric Coble’s play, a spirited widow threatens to blow up her brownstone and perhaps much of the block rather than leave it. (And they say it’s a seller’s market.) In this Broadway two-hander, Estelle Parsons stars as the retiree with a penchant for Molotov cocktails and Stephen Spinella as the son who must convince her to go more quietly. Booth Theatre, 225 West 45th Street, velocityofautumnbroadway.com. --Alexis Soloski

FILM
The Unknown Known
April 4
To many Voice readers, the name Donald Rumsfeld inspires clenched fists and grumbled expletives, but the two-time U.S. Secretary of Defense (under Ford and Bush II) is as undeniably fascinating as he is divisive, manipulative, and possibly sociopathic. In this unsettling thematic sequel to his Oscar-winning doc The Fog of War, director Errol Morris turns his “Interrotron” camera on the grinning, sharp-tongued Rummy, grilling him on his Zelig–like political career, notorious memo writing, and public contradictions. RADiUS-TWC, in limited release, radiustwc.com. --Hillis

FILM
Nymphomaniac: Volume II
April 4
Unlike Kill Bill, that other bifurcated four-hour saga of female empowerment costarring Uma Thurman, Danish provocateur Lars von Trier’s smutty, nutty, and fearless tragicomedy can be seen in its entirety just two weeks after Volume I dropped. Unashamed sex addict Charlotte Gainsbourg recalls to aging bachelor Stellan Skarsgård her decades of erotic milestones since childhood, seen in explicit flashback episodes that run the gamut from insightful profundity to puckish absurdity. Did your jaw drop, or is that your O-face? Magnolia Pictures, in limited release, magpictures.com. --Hillis

 

ART
Roberta Allen: “Works from the 1970s”
April 4–May 10
Art from the 1970s heyday of Conceptualism can look a bit dated now, the intellectual conceits having gone flat. But Allen’s spare work still retains its wit and whimsy. In one group of photographs, the artist gestures at floating clusters of lines labeled “pointless arrows” — a feminist presence enduring or shifting the conventional (male) wisdom. Her chart-like drawings, too, wryly scoff at logic while a series of canvas boxes, each poked full of holes, suggests escape from bland confinement. Minus Space, 111 Front Street, Brooklyn, minusspace.com. --Shuster

MUSIC
Perfect Pussy
April 5
By mixing her blood into a limited-run vinyl edition of Perfect Pussy’s new album, lead singer Meredith Graves continued a stunt-packaging tradition that runs back to Big Black’s Lungs EP (the first copies of which came decorated with actual razor blades and bloody bandages). Thankfully, the band connects with more than just edgy record-release theatrics: Their small catalog already shows off an ability to join hooks and scuzz in classically underground fashion. Add blunt lyrics more interesting than most of those by their punk contemporaries, and you’ve got something more than mere revivalism: art that actually refreshes the genre. Mercury Lounge, 217 East Houston Street, mercuryloungenyc.com. --Walls

EVENTS
Brooklyn Flea
April 5–6
Once the weather warms, the Brooklyn Flea escapes its winter quarters and returns to the plazas of Williamsburg, Fort Greene, Brooklyn Bridge Park, and now Park Slope, too. Some locales combine handmade goods and vintage finds with local delicacies. Others concentrate on the delectable food alone. Until then, you can huddle indoors at the Flea’s winter location at 80 North 5th Street in Williamsburg or check out the nearby Brooklyn Night Bazaar in Greenpoint. Open every Friday and Saturday night, it boasts not only crafts and eats, but also live bands, ping pong, and black-lit mini golf. Brooklyn Flea, various locations, brooklynflea.com; Brooklyn Night Bazaar, 165 Banker Street, Brooklyn, bkbazaar.com. --Soloski

BOOKS
Acts of God
by Ellen Gilchrist
April 8
Some Southern writers have nastier wit than Gilchrist, or a keener sense of American politics; say, Flannery O’Connor or John Kennedy Toole. But how many such formidable Dixie types still walk among us, gathering accolades? Jesmyn Ward, maybe? In a pinch, I’ll take Gilchrist’s downhome women, set adrift (sometimes literally) in the aftermath of various natural disasters, brought to life by the author’s light touch, tough mind, and buoyant spirit, without washing up too near to religious platitudes. Call her the Anne Richards of literary fiction. Algonquin Books, 256 pp., $23.95. --Hannaham

BOOKS
Can’t and Won’t: Stories
by Lydia Davis
April 8
The fact that Davis won the 2013 Man Booker International seems to expose once and for all the decidedly English flair of her oeuvre, despite her Yankee roots. There’s a quasi-autistic, trainspotty quality in the terse precision of her language, her pithy wit, and her laser focus on such mundane subjects as semantics, dogs, neighbors bearing peach tarts, Flaubert (whose work she has translated), and cows. Her work is brief and super dry, her prose crystalline, and her obsessions wax bourgeois. Jolly good. Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 304 pp., $26. --Hannaham

BOOKS
Men Explain Things to Me
by Rebecca Solnit
April 8
“The battle with Men Who Explain Things has trampled down many women,” wrote venerable nonfiction scribe Solnit in her 2012 essay that elucidated the male behavior pattern dubbed “mansplaining.” In the mordantly funny book-length version of that essay, Solnit makes a case for the way in which some men’s insistence on the credibility of their own voices over those of women — even experts like herself — represents the milder end of a pattern of silencing women that devolves into rape and murder. Haymarket Books, 100 pp., $11.95. --Hannaham

DANCE
Stephen Petronio Company
April 8–13
Bold, bald, and heavily tattooed, Nutley native Petronio celebrates his contemporary troupe’s 30th year, and his appointment as the Joyce’s first artist-in-residence, with the new Locomotor, with a score by hip-hop artist Clams Casino. Melissa Toogood, late of Merce Cunningham’s ensemble, guests with his fine dancers. Petronio also performs a new solo, Stripped, set to a Philip Glass piano étude, and reprises part of his 2000 hit Strange Attractors to music by Michael Nyman. Joyce Theater, 175 Eighth Avenue, joyce.org. --Elizabeth Zimmer

 

THEATER
The Great Immensity
Performances begin April 8
Climate skeptics insist the earth’s temperature hasn’t really risen in the past 100 years. Can a Public Lab show change their mind? This new piece by documentary drama troupe The Civilians explores our vexed relationship with the environment, as a young woman searches for a missing colleague amid rising sea levels and threatened extinctions. Steven Cosson writes and directs the thriller-like drama, while Michael Friedman’s songs should warm hearts, if not globes. The Public Theater, 425 Lafayette Street, publictheater.org. --Soloski

THEATER
City of Conversation
Performances begin April 10
Congress may deadlock, lobbyists fret, justices snipe, and presidents grumble, but no matter how impolitic Washington politics becomes, the tony dinner party continues on. Lincoln Center presents Anthony Giardina’s new partisan play, directed by Doug Hughes, which concerns a glittering capitol hostess. The play follows Hester Ferris from Carter to Obama (with some Bushes and Clintons in between), exploring political triumphs, private challenges, and sticky seating arrangements. Mitzi E. Newhouse Theater, 50 Lincoln Center Plaza, lct.org. --Soloski

MUSIC
Anthony Braxton Festival
April 10–12, 17–19
The revolutionary improviser, composer, and teacher turns 69 this year, and celebrates with this wild two-week festival. On the first two nights, the “Tri-Centric Orchestra” performs vintage chamber-symphony pieces by the maestro. Braxton the saxophonist jumps onstage during the first Saturday. (In a nod to his pedagogical legacy, the opening acts are Braxton mentees James Fei, Nate Wooley, and Fay Victor.) The second week brings performances of Braxton’s new opera, Trillium J: The Non-Unconfessionables. His drama-rituals are as unique as his approach to jazz: You can hear post-Stockhausen atonality, textures from American drone and early minimalism, and then the libretto’s shards of science fiction, monologues on class and race, plus the odd bit of slapstick humor. Forty-five years after For Alto, Braxton still knows how to shock. Roulette, 509 Atlantic Avenue, Brooklyn, roulette.org. --Walls

FILM
Under the Skin
April 11
Following Sexy Beast and Birth, British filmmaker Jonathan Glazer’s third feature is a mind-melting masterpiece, a tense and otherworldly social-realist mystery about the alien qualities of humanity and the existential angst of being “the other.” Sent to this planet (the highways of Scotland, mostly) to lure lonely men to their doom, Scarlett Johansson’s raven-haired femme fatale is sensual and frightening as she experiences pleasures and pains of a flesh that’s not even her own. A24, in limited release, a24films.com. --Hillis

FILM
King of Escape
April 11–17
Hot off the celebrated release of his minimalist homoerotic thriller Stranger by the Lake, undervalued French auteur Alain Guiraudie’s rambunctiously funny, lovably perverse 2009 road movie gets an overdue theatrical run. After being saved from bullies, a rural teen (The Secret of the Grain’s Hafsia Herzi) falls in love with her protector — a hefty, fortysomething gay tractor salesman (Ludovic Berthillot) — and convinces him to run away with her, as her father and local police follow in kooky pursuit. Anthology Film Archives, 32 Second Avenue, anthologyfilmarchives.org. --Hillis

FILM
The Art of the Real
April 11–26
Previously a monthly event, the inaugural yearly edition of the Film Society’s boundary-pushing series investigates the expansive, beautiful possibilities of nonfiction cinema. Opening with La última película — an unclassifiable, feverish reimagining of Dennis Hopper’s The Last Movie, set during the cusp of the Mayan apocalypse — and Romanian auteur Corneliu Porumboiu’s entertaining political/familial essay The Second Game, this showcase could use a tagline: “These ain’t your daddy’s talking-head interviews.” The Film Society of Lincoln Center, West 65th Street and Broadway, filmlinc.com. --Hillis

THEATER
The Cripple of Inishmaan
Performances begin April 12
The poor, lame lad at the center of Martin McDonagh’s drama likely looks familiar. Stare beyond the painful limp and bare haircut and you’ll see erstwhile boy wizard Daniel Radcliffe. Back on Broadway after stints in Equus and How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying, Radcliffe plays the lead in McDonagh’s dark comedy about love, death, disease, and Hollywood stardom. Happily, the role does not require the erotic caressing of horses or the dancing of jigs. Cort Theatre, 138 West 48th Street, crippleofinishmaan.com. --Soloski

THEATER
Annapurna
Performances begin April 13
Annapurna is the Hindu goddess of food and cooking. Should we expect an unusually robust concession stand at this New Group show? Sharr White’s play, which opens on a scene of frying sausages, concerns a long-absent wife and the dying “cowboy poet” husband she comes to visit. But here’s the twist: In Bart DeLorenzo’s production, the estranged Emma and Ulysses are played by happily married TV stars Megan Mullally and Nick Offerman. Acorn Theater, 410 West 42nd Street, thenewgroup.org. --Soloski

 

EVENTS
Easter Parade
April 20
What would Jesus wear? A fedora? A bowler? A boater? For decades, New Yorkers have celebrated the resurrection, the life, and the oversized rabbits with outsized hats at the Easter Parade. A milliner’s dream since the mid-19th century, the parade provides an opportunity to don your top toppers and most fascinating fascinators as you promenade through midtown. Afterward, you can take your bonnet to one of the city’s 30 Easter egg hunts in all five boroughs and Roosevelt Island, too. 49th Street near St. Patrick's Cathedral. --Soloski

MUSIC
The Bad Plus
April 22–27
A couple dozen orchestras around the world can turn in good performances of Stravinsky’s Rite of Spring. But how many jazz trios can play the piece in full? Probably just this one, as their new transcription of the masterwork, just out on Sony, demonstrates. The Bad Plus also have a ton of great original music in their book, not to mention their solid cover versions of tunes by Nirvana and Pink Floyd. They’ve been acclaimed for their punk-ish attack, and pianist Ethan Iverson can talk eloquently about an “avant-garde populism.” Another way of putting: This group is a kick no matter what kind of music they’re playing. Jazz Standard, 116 East 27th Street, jazzstandard.net. --Walls

THEATER
The Few
Performances begin April 23
Though print media continues its precipitous decline, plays about it thrive. While Broadway’s Lucky Guy and the National Theatre of Scotland’s Enquirer focused on big papers and big names, Samuel D. Hunter’s new drama centers on a giveaway rag in a small Idaho town. Davis McCallum directs a script about the founder who abandoned it, the editor (and ex-girlfriend) who keeps it afloat, and the cub reporter who wants to return it to its former negligible glory. Rattlestick Playwrights Theater, 224 Waverly Place, rattlestick.org. --Soloski

DANCE
Ballet Preljocaj
April 23–27
Snow White, the Grimms’ classic tale of a wicked queen’s jealousy of her stepdaughter, got a makeover in 2008 from French-Albanian choreographer Angelin Preljocaj, who turned it into a two-hour S&M ballet, with music by Gustav Mahler and the new-music group 79D and revealing costumes by Jean Paul Gaultier. Definitely not for kids, it’s been called “part Pieter Brueghel, part Henri Rousseau, and part Quentin Tarantino.” Its seven dwarfs might fly. David H. Koch Theater, 20 Lincoln Center Plaza, davidhkochtheater.com. --Zimmer

DANCE
Dance Theatre of Harlem
April 23–27
A new ballet by DTH alums Thaddeus Davis and Tanya Wideman Davis traces the Great Migration of African-Americans from the South to the industrial cities of the North a century ago; music is by Jamie Keesecker and dramaturgy by Thomas deFrantz. Also entering the repertory is Ulysses Dove’s 1993 Dancing on the Front Porch of Heaven. A pas de deux from Raymonda pays tribute to the late Frederic Franklin. And more, across two programs. Frederick P. Rose Hall, Jazz at Lincoln Center, 60th Street and Broadway; jalc.org. --Zimmer

DANCE
LAVA
April 23–May 4
This 13-year-old troupe of eight feminist acrobats, directed by Sarah East Johnson, interweaves scientific principles with a push to rediscover neglected ancestors. A diverse cast, pushing boundaries of gender conformity, presents Tracks, an evening-length dance that traverses a landscape of swinging ropes and suspended fishnet, improvising amid sound samples from a range of cultures mixed in performance by DJ Tikka Masala. Nancy Brooks Brody and Johnson contribute video; the cast developed its text out of the first-person narratives of pioneer women. Dixon Place, 161a Chrystie Street, dixonplace.org. --Zimmer

THEATER
An Octoroon
Performances begin April 23
The last time Branden Jacobs-Jenkins attempted an adaptation of Dion Boucicault’s celebrated, troublesome melodrama, creative differences thwarted the premiere. With luck, Jacobs-Jenkins will find a more congenial collaborator in Soho Rep artistic director Sarah Benson. Together, they take on his timely, angry response to this script, a success and a scandal in 1860s America and abroad. (Boucicault wrote a sad ending for New York audiences, a happier one for Londoners.) Set on a plantation, it concerns murder, romance, and sanguinary taint. Soho Rep, 46 Walker Street, sohorep.org. --Soloski

MUSIC
EMA
April 25
Erika M. Anderson (who goes by her initials for her stage name) notched a critical success in 2011 with Past Life Martyred Saints, an album that offered hazy, intimate confession, even at its peaks of intensity. The first track distributed from her new album, “Satellite,” has a bit more public-facing fight in it, and not just during its white-noise prelude. You’ll have a couple of weeks after the record release date to memorize the new tunes, then see how they translate to a live setting. Mercury Lounge, 217 East Houston Street, mercuryloungenyc.com. --Walls

 

MUSIC
Bernie Worrell, Bill Laswell, Grand Mixer DXT, Dr. Israel
April 26
Who knows what this will sound like? Bassist Laswell, one of the all-star collaborators in all of New York history, once put out a recording with his metal group, Praxis, that featured first-gen turntablist DXT and Funkadelic keyboardist Worrell on a couple of tracks. Is it too much to hope that, without any guitarist dominating the lineup, this set will develop into an abstract canvas for Grand Mixer’s scratches and Worrell’s organ trills? Pretty please? The Stone, 16 Avenue C, thestonenyc.com. --Walls

EVENTS
Sakura Matsuri
April 26–27
Cherry blossoms represent the beauty and evanescence of life. They also represent a chance to watch men swing samurai swords at each other and beat giant taiko drums. And did we mention the plethora of bento boxes? This annual festival celebrates Brooklyn Botanic Garden’s myriad cherry varietals, which transform the esplanade’s trees into fluffy pink and white clouds. Festivities include music, dance, arts and crafts, and an epic cosplay fashion show. The Brooklyn Parasol Society and Friends of Bonsai also feature. Brooklyn Botanic Garden, 150 Eastern Parkway, Brooklyn, bbg.org. --Soloski

ART
“River Fugues: Moving the Water(s)”
April 26–May 31
An immersive installation from Margaret Cogswell surveys the connections between industry and water, a subject the artist has been exploring for a decade. Video projected through multi-lens devices (modeled after surveyors’ telescopes) creates a fragmentary documentary that compares the history and politics of Wyoming rivers with those of the Catskills’ Ashokan Reservoir (a supplier for this city’s taps). Separately, Cogswell’s more personal impressions of the areas appear in exquisite watercolors of semi-abstraction. CUE Art Foundation, 137 West 25th Street, cueartfoundation.org. --Shuster

ART
“Andy Warhol’s 13 Most Wanted Men and the 1964 World’s Fair”
April 27–September 7
Warhol’s single piece of public art, a mural commissioned for the 1964 World’s Fair, lasted only a few days before its removal by fair officials, who weren’t pleased to find mugshots reproduced from the NYPD’s list of most wanted men. The controversial moment, brief as it was, serves as a launching point for an exhibit that examines how the era’s conservative culture reacted to Warhol’s provocations, such as the paintings of those same mugshots and the screen-test film they inspired, 13 Most Beautiful Boys (all on display here). Queens Museum, Flushing Meadows Corona Park, Queens, queensmuseum.org. --Shuster

EVENTS
Queens Taste
April 29
What does Queens taste like? Single family homes, airports, tennis, baseball stadiums? Well, as the most diverse area in the world, it is home to a vast range of cuisine, which you can sample at the Queens Taste event at the Sheraton Hotel in Flushing. A $100 ticket buys tastes from more than 50 food purveyors serving tacos, truffles, tandoori, ceviche, burgers, momo dumplings, and more. Wine, too, though none of it quite so local. Sheraton LaGuardia East Hotel, 135-20 39th Avenue, Queens, itsinqueens.com/queenstaste. --Soloski

FILM
Ellen Burstyn
April 30–May 6
The 81-year-old Oscar-, Emmy-, and Tony-winning actress is still classing up the big screen with elegance and nuance, reason enough for BAM’s loving tribute to her six-decade-plus career. Burstyn participates in a Q&A after Martin Scorsese’s Alice Doesn’t Live Here Anymore (which earned her that gold baldie), but don’t miss her in Alain Resnais’s Providence, Jules Dassin’s A Dream of Passion, and Daniel Petrie’s Resurrection, plus rewatchable favorites like The Exorcist and Requiem for a Dream. Brooklyn Academy of Music, 30 Lafayette Avenue, Brooklyn, bam.org. --Hillis

DANCE
DANSE: A French-American Festival of Performance and Ideas
May 1–18
Fourteen city presenters collaborate with the French Embassy on an in-depth exploration of France-based dance artists, in Manhattan, Brooklyn, and Queens theaters ranging from tiny (the Club at La MaMa, the Chocolate Factory Theater) to huge (the BAM opera house), as well as city streets and art galleries, with as many as seven events daily, some free. Offerings include 16 world premieres, talks on issues central to contemporary dance, two useful new books, and several emerging artists making their New York debuts. Various venues, frenchculture.org/DANSE. --Zimmer

MUSIC
Annie Gosfield
May 2
The Downtown composer/keyboardist is the focus of a week of programming at The Stone in late April and early May. But if you have to pick just one date, go for this one: The first half will feature Gosfield’s trio with guitarist Roger Kleier and drummer Ches Smith (a reliably potent group), while the latter draws in other musicians to play Gosfield’s brilliant piano-plus-sampler fantasia “Lightning Slingers and Dead Ringers,” as well as a new work for contrabass and electronics. The Stone, 16 Avenue C, thestonenyc.com. --Walls

 

FILM
Kenji Mizoguchi
May 2–June 8
Admired by Godard, Kurosawa, and Orson Welles, the late Japanese auteur (d. 1956) is honored with the most complete North American retrospective of his mise-en-scène mastery since the mid-’90s. Over 30 films are confirmed, mostly 35mm and 16mm prints, including 22 imported rarities such as Taira Clan Saga and Princess Yang Kwei-Fei (Mizoguchi’s only two films shot in color). Film historian extraordinaire David Bordwell also gives a special lecture on opening weekend, so get thee to Queens. Museum of the Moving Image, 36-01 35th Avenue, Queens, movingimage.us. --Hillis

ART
“The Dream of the Brothel-Museum”
May 2–June 8
In 1976, Kim Jones started appearing on the streets of Los Angeles as Mudman, a startling figure caked in mud who wore a stocking mask and carried on his back a spiky structure assembled from sticks. The performances were, in part, acts of catharsis for Jones, who had lived through 13 months as a Marine in the Vietnam War. In his drawings of the same period (the focus of this show), similarly strange characters — satyrs, harlequins, monsters, hoodlums — populate densely crosshatched montages of nightmarish disorder. Pierogi, 177 North 9th Street, Brooklyn, pierogi2000.com. --Shuster

EVENTS
The Great Saunter
May 3
New Yorkers are obsessed with speed. How quickly can you get crosstown by cab? How fast can your Chinese food arrive? How can you beat the line at the Metrocard machine? But the Great Saunter encourages a more lackadaisical pace. This annual stroll ambles around Manhattan’s 32 miles of coastline at the leisurely pace of three miles per hour. If you require a more adrenaline-heavy trot, you can head 55 miles upstate for the Zombie Run on May 10, a three-mile sprint during which you flee from flesh-eating monsters (i.e., joggers wearing a lot of smeared eyeliner and fake blood). Circle Line Terminal, West 42nd Street and Twelfth Avenue, shorewalkers.org; thezombierun.com. --Soloski

EVENTS
TD Five Boro Bike Tour
May 4
Bike lanes were one of the more contentious aspects of Mayor Bloomberg’s tenure. But you won’t have to rely on them during the TD bike tour, which offers the chance to bike through all five boroughs (yes, even Staten island), free of traffic. The 40-mile route begins in Lower Manhattan and runs up into Harlem and the Bronx, then along the BQE before crossing the vertiginous Verrazano-Narrows Bridge. After a finish-line celebration, return via the Staten Island Ferry, as riding through New York Harbor is discouraged. bikenewyork.org. --Soloski

MUSIC
Wye Oak
May 7
I guess we can blame indie-rock culture for the fact that this Baltimore-based duo doesn’t have a significantly bigger following. They made soft-to-loud-and-back dynamic leaps sound like a brand new idea on their last couple of seething, tuneful albums for Merge. (Really, 2011’s Civilian should have been the breakout.) In any event, they’re trying something new now: less guitar, more synth action. No matter what instrumentation they use, they’re worth investigating. Webster Hall, 125 East 11th Street, websterhall.com. --Walls

MUSIC
tUnE-yArDs
May 7
Merrill Garbus may never impress rock gurus who sneer at any mix of pop form with other compositional practices. But that’s okay. The singer-instrumentalist’s tUnE-yArDs project offers more ecstatic rhythm and hook work than many other bands give up in a full set. (The extended-technique reach of Garbus’s own voice is just the topping.) Advance clips of the new record, titled Nikki Nack, suggest that the catalog’s only going to get better. And if you’re fiending for more of her unique aesthetic before the May street date, check out Garbus’s pieces “Quizassa” and “Ansa ya” for the Pulitzer- and Grammy-winning vocal octet Roomful of Teeth. Rough Trade, 64 North 9th Street, Brooklyn, roughtradenyc.com. --Walls

DANCE
Lyon Opera Ballet
May 7–9
One of Europe’s most cosmopolitan, wide-ranging troupes, directed by Yorgos Loukos, presents the U.S. premiere of Christian Rizzo’s 2004 ni fleurs, ni ford-mustang, a moody, mysterious conceptual dance rooted in fashion and the visual arts, with music by Gerome Nox. (See more of Rizzo’s work May 2 and 3 at Florence Gould Hall, fiaf.org.) BAM Howard Gilman Opera House, 30 Lafayette Avenue, Brooklyn, BAM.org. --Zimmer

ART
Ragnar Kjartansson: “Me, My Mother, My Father, and I”
May 7–June 29
Ragnar Kjartansson’s latest work of straight-faced clowning circles around some family lore: Did his parents, both actors, conceive the artist during a sex scene they made for a low-budget 1977 Icelandic film? That scene (housewife and plumber writhing on the kitchen floor) loops without sound while, like a half-crocked fan club, 10 guitarists strum a dirge of a tune and chant the couple’s grade-B dialogue, including the line, “Take me here by the dishwasher.” It’s completely absurd, and that’s exactly the point. New Museum, 235 Bowery, newmuseum.org. --Shuster

 

DANCE
Lenora Lee Dance
May 8–9
The EscapeandRescued Memories: New York Stories use dance, music, film, and martial arts to illuminate the lives of early 20th-century Chinese women trafficked into the U.S. and pressed into indentured servitude in New York and California. Members of Kei Lun Martial Arts and Enshin Karate, South San Francisco Dojo, join Lee’s contemporary troupe. Asia Society, 725 Park Avenue, asiasociety.org/new-york/events. --Zimmer

EVENTS
Manhattan Cocktail Classic
May 9–13
New York boasts nearly 3,000 bars, to say nothing of the 16,000 full-service restaurants that serve booze. Shouldn’t that mean we have mixology pretty well covered? Apparently not. In early May, the fifth annual Manhattan Cocktail Classic descends upon our sheltered isle, promising five days of “parties, pairings, dinners, dances, workshops, lectures, tiki-tours, bar crawls,” and a two-day industry conference. Past fetes have yielded such tipples as the Kaaterskill Brose, Hudson Rickhouse Rickey, and Aloha from Brooklyn. Ready your liver! Various locations, manhattancocktailclassic.com. --Soloski

ART
Lygia Clark: “The Abandonment of Art, 1948–1988”
May 10–August 24
An all-encompassing Clark retrospective follows the Brazilian artist’s developing interest in altering our traditional relationships to art. In keeping with her ideas of participation, you’re encouraged to go beyond just viewing: You can manipulate copies of her hinged sculptures (Bichos), cut a Mobius strip to reenact her performance of Caminhando, crawl through a tunnel of tactile sensations (The House Is a Body, re-created), and try out replicas of her “relational objects,” interactive items she intended for use in psychotherapy. Museum of Modern Art, 11 West 53rd Street, moma.org. --Shuster

DANCE
American Ballet Theater
May 12–July 5
The spring season opens with Don Quixote, but things heat up on May 20 with a program of short classics by Balanchine and Massine. Then, in order, a week each of La Bayadère, Coppélia, Manon, Frederick Ashton’s Cinderella, Giselle, Swan Lake, and a program of dances derived from Shakespeare plays. Exquisite dancing, but way too many imperiled women. Metropolitan Opera House, Lincoln Center, abt.org. --Zimmer

BOOKS
The Secret World of Oil
by Ken Silverstein
May 13
A match made in hell, it seems: gargantuan corporate oil companies trading petroleum with shady developing nations. It’s been going on for decades, and the consequences for the environment and for world politics may prove devastating, suggests Silverstein, a Harvard fellow and former Harper’s editor. This fascinating inside story profiles some of the smoothies, crackpots, and hucksters who broker those deals, like the one that left 400 tons of toxic waste in the Ivory Coast. As one oil exec tells Silverstein, “You have to deal with governments and ministers, and you have to service those people. . . . You can call it corruption, but it’s part of the system.” Verso, 240 pp., $25.95. --Hannaham

DANCE
Pierre Rigal
May 13–18
A former hurdler and videographer with degrees in math and economics, Rigal transitioned into dance when he was 23 and started choreographing a dozen years ago. The U.S. premiere of his 2011 musical spectacle Micro infuses the poetry of theater dance with the energy of a “pre-post-rock” concert, as the dancers engage physically with the musicians in Rigal’s Moon Pallas band. Joyce Theater, 175 Eighth Avenue, Joyce.org. --Zimmer

DANCE
Liz Santoro
May 14–17
Santoro’s last outing, Watch It, landed a 2013 Bessie Award for Outstanding Production; ahead is Relative Collider, a quartet that “works on the physics of attention, the collision of watching.” Santoro began as a ballet dancer and then studied neuroscience at Harvard; how she wound up in what passes for the avant-garde is a mystery, but we’re grateful. Chocolate Factory Theater, 5-49 49th Avenue, Long Island City, chocolatefactorytheater.org. --Zimmer

EVENTS
FCA Manhattan Cup
May 16
Would you dare dine on any fish snagged off the coast of Manhattan? You won’t have to worry during this catch-and-release tournament, sponsored by the Fisherman’s Conservation Association and held just off Pier 59. In categories such as fly, artificial, and bait, anglers belly up to the Hudson and try to hook the largest striped bass and bluefish — some of the catches are worryingly impressive. (What have those fish been eating?) The competition benefits various children’s charities and efforts toward improving beach access. Chelsea Brewing Company, Pier 59, manhattancup.com. --Soloski

 

EVENTS
The Kings County Fair
May 15–26
Various ordinances prohibit the raising of livestock in the five boroughs, so you shouldn’t come to the Kings County Fair hoping to gape at prize pigs and fluffy rabbits. But this funfair does boast the world’s largest traveling midway, featuring more than 100 rides. Cotton candy and funnel cakes, too. If you’d prefer something a bit more 4H-ish, head over to the Queens County Farm Museum, where on May 4 you can enjoy sheep shearing, spinning demonstrations, and compost lectures, plus food trucks, hayrides, and a variety of creatures to feed and cuddle. Floyd Bennett Field, 50 Aviation Road, Brooklyn, thekingscountyfair.com; Queens County Farm Museum, 73-50 Little Neck Parkway, Queens, queensfarm.org. --Soloski

THEATER
The Killer
Performances begin May 17
Michael Shannon has played his share of murderers — Iceman, General Zod. But in Michael Feingold’s new translation of Eugene Ionesco’s absurdist drama, he’ll play an everyman trying to find and capture a mysterious assassin, even as his new love may fall prey to the killer’s intentions. Darko Tresjnak directs the existential detective drama for Theatre for a New Audience. Polonsky Shakespeare Center, 262 Ashland Place, Brooklyn, tfana.org. --Soloski

Award-winning fabulist Kevin Brockmeier's A Few Seconds of Radiant Filmstrip: A Memoir of Seventh Grade hits bookstores April 1.

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