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WEDNESDAY

JANUARY 7


Photo

‘SEVENTIES COLOR PHOTOGRAPHY’

This savvy show of work by Stephen Shore, William Eggleston, Joel Sternfeld, Mitch Epstein, Richard Misrach, and others should help focus the growing interest in a fertile but often overlooked period in photo history. The success of large-scale color photos by contemporary art stars like Gursky, Struth, and Ruff has prompted a look back at their influences—a group of pioneering color photographers whose work has never looked more definitively of the moment. Curator Marla Kennedy takes us back to the future. ALETTI

Through January 31, Kennedy Boesky Photographs, 535 West 22nd Street, 212.741.0963

Theater

JOHN KELLY & COMPANY

As part of the Joyce’s “Altogether Different” festival, dancer-warbler-conceiver John Kelly presents this mini-retrospective of his unclassifiable performance pieces, including the Obie-winning Love of a Poet and Find My Way Home. Incarnating characters as variegated as Egon Schiele, Joni Mitchell, and Cesare, Dr. Caligari’s pet somnambulist, Kelly’s an enchantingly unclassifiable phenomenon himself. FEINGOLD

Also Thursday, Saturday, and Sunday, Joyce Theater, 175 Eighth Avenue, 212.242.0800

 


THURSDAY

JANUARY 8


Art

‘PEOPLE OF THE (COMIC) BOOK: SUPERHEROES AND JEWISH CULTURE’

Is Superman Jewish? His creators were. This celebration of artists and writers who breathed life into many icons of American pop culture features an exhibition of vintage comics and original art. Leavened throughout are rare Max Fleischer cartoons, live musical animations of Rube Goldberg’s absurdly complicated machines, appearances by legendary artists like Joe Kubert, Create-a-Comic workshops for kids, and lectures on superheroes from Jewish tradition, such as the Polish rabbi who leapt oceans in a single bound. BAKER

Through March 11, Laurie Tisch Sussman Gallery, JCC, 334 Amsterdam Avenue, 212.505.5708, jccmanhattan.org

Dance

DAVID GORDON

At Lincoln Center they’ve fused the two parts of Shakespeare’s Henry IV; in the East Village we have Dancing Henry Five, subtitled “A Pre-emptive (Postmodern) Strike and Spin,” a collaboration between the Bard and Gordon, a much decorated veteran of the experimental-dance wars. With his Pick Up Performance Company, utilizing music by William Walton and the recorded voices of Laurence Olivier, Christopher Plummer, and others, he choreographs (and directs, and designs) the characters of the French and English courts, and a sea voyage, and the battle of Agincourt. If any dancemaker can pull this off, Gordon can. ZIMMER

At 8:30, and Friday through Sunday, and January 15 through 18, Danspace Project at St. Mark’s Church, 131 East 10th Street, 212.674.8194

 

Photo

NICHOLAS NIXON

Although Nixon’s elevated views of downtown Boston are marvels of meticulously rendered detail, they’re upstaged here by 10 small studies of figures both clothed and nude. Typically, Nixon’s subjects are faceless and radically cropped, and the camera hovers so close you can almost feel their body heat. This intimacy is especially startling when the bodies in question are old, and the texture of mottled, wrinkled skin suggests a landscape more evocative than any urban grid. ALETTI

Through January 17, Zabriskie Gallery, 41 East 57th Street, 212.752.1223

Theater

‘KING COWBOY RUFUS RULES THE UNIVERSE’

We know that the universe is often on master theatrician Richard Foreman’s metaphysical mind, but ruled by cowboys? Well, almost any set of images can wander into Foreman’s fecund imagination; its preoccupations here seem to have something to do with George Bush. The cast this time includes such Off-Off notables as Juliana Francis and T. Ryder Smith. FEINGOLD

Previews begin today, opens January 15, Ontological at St. Mark’s Church, 131 East 10th Street, 212.533.4650


FRIDAY

JANUARY 9


Dance

‘DANCE ON CAMERA FESTIVAL 2004’

This venerable fest mixes old and new, kicking off with a tribute to the late Anne Belle, whose films about Balanchine’s world help preserve his legacy. Friday at 1 see a rare 1973 doc, A Dancer’s Life, by William Richert, paired with a British short called Line Dance. At 4, there’s Belle’s Reflections of a Dancer (a portrait of Alexandra Danilova), and an excerpt from Belle’s final work on the late SAB ballet master Stanley Williams. At 8:30, see Suzanne Farrell: Elusive Muse. On Saturday at 3:30, a new doc by Andy Abrahams Wilson captures many facets of experimental choreographer Anna Halprin, and a German doc follows dancers over 65 rehearsing a work by Pina Bausch. And more. ZIMMER

At 1:30, 4, 6, and 8:30, and Saturday at 1, 3:30, 6, and 8:30, and January 16, 17, 23, and 24, Walter Reade Theater, 165 West 65th Street, 212.875.5600, filmlinc.com

Film

‘THE BATTLE OF ALGIERS’

With a recent Pentagon screening and Zbigniew Brzezinski’s intense recommendation at a D.C. conference of politicos, Gillo Pontecorvo’s fierce piece of 1965 agitprop is suddenly hot hot hot. No movie so effectively squeezes you into the shoes of grassroots combatants fighting colonialist power for the right to their own neighborhoods. Shot where it happened, employing the full battery of faux-doc visual textures, and cuing martialized action to machine-shop electronica, Pontecorvo’s rebel yowl is astonishingly timely, and an election-year must-see. ATKINSON

Through January 29, Film Forum, 209 West Houston Street, 212.727.8110

‘LA TÊTE CONTRE LES MURS’ A/K/A ‘THE KEEPERS’

In 1959, the year before he directed his surreal horror classic Eyes Without a Face, Georges Franju made his move from documentary to feature production with this devastating noir about a young dropout whose bourgeois father plunks him into an insane asylum. The great chanteur Charles Aznavour makes his screen debut as a friendly epileptic. Godard called it”an insane film about insanity, a film of an insane beauty.” The movie is being shown as the second program of the Alliance Française Cine-Club’s excellent month-long “Filmmakers of Our Times” series, with each film accompanied by a doc about its director. The feature will be followed by an hour-long interview with Franju, made in 1997. STEIN

At 12:30, 4, and 7:30, Alliance Française, Florence Gould Hall, 55 East 59th Street, 212.355.6160

Music

THE BAD PLUS+GUTBUCKET

The Bad boys court controversy because they mess with the jazz norm—not just in choice of pop repertoire, which reaches from “Heart of Glass” to “Heart of Gold,” but in their ramrodding of rock rhythms into a piano trio improv process that swings even when it doesn’t. What’s wrong with a bit of theater on the bandstand? Gutbucket give skronk a good name by spotlighting the heart that beats in the center of math jazz. MACNIE

At 9, Joe’s Pub, 425 Lafayette Street, 212.539.8770

REX HOBART+THE NAYSAYER

Modern twang variations suitable for downtown consumption. Hobart and his Misery Boys were math-rock refugees playing around with hard country’s steady beat and sense—and fell in love with it. They’ve evolved into a more traditional but edgy outfit at home with the full range of grown-up honky-tonk. The Naysayer’s Anna Padgett and Cynthia Nelson are urban, witty—and have moved toward straight-ahead country too. MAZOR

At 9, Knitting Factory, 74 Leonard Street, 212.219.3006

HOLLERTRONIX+DJ AYRES

Taking the 2 Many DJs concept and swapping out the global cosmopolitan for the Southern crunk thug, Hollertronix have perked up nightlife first in their native Philly and now here with lengthy DJ sets that forgo shame in favor of genuinely unstoppable musical assaults—tear-the-club-up anthems, dancehall shot-licking, blissful ’80s pop, and whatever else might inspire a milk shake or three. And we’ll always remember DJ Ayres fondly from the Indie 5000 days, when hip-hop parties could just be, without having to be something more too. CARAMANICA

At 9, Southpaw, 125 Fifth Avenue, Brooklyn, 718.230.0236

YEAH YEAHS YEAHS

The little band that hollered keeps getting bigger—maybe it’s their pseudonymous pseudo-country gigs, but they’re growing subtler and trickier even as they crank up the volume. If Karen O’s radiant rasp in that video for “Maps” hasn’t squeezed a sniffle out of you yet, either your heart’s made of cardboard or your Net connection isn’t fast enough. With Black Dice, the Liars, and Devendra Banhart. WOLK

At 7:30, Hammerstein Ballroom, 311 West 34th Street, 212.485.1534

 


SATURDAY

JANUARY 10


 

Music

‘ANDY BISKIN’S GOLDBERG VARIATIONS’

Humor has marked the jazz clarinetist’s work for the last few years, and this hat tip to Rube Goldberg italicizes Biskin’s appreciation of wit. Reeds, brass, and rhythm provide a soundtrack for animated RG pieces such as “Self Operating Napkin” and “Automatic Sheet Music Turner.” Fun, fun, fun. MACNIE

At 8, Jewish Community Center in Manhattan, 334 Amsterdam Avenue, 646.505.4379

‘GLOBALFEST’

Probably the biggest world-music event of the year in terms of number of artists in one place, this round-robin event features 16 acts from five continents doing overlapping sets on the three stages at the Public. While many of the acts could sell out the night on their own, some unknowns are making their American debut, which only sweetens the pot. Featuring Susheela Raman, Savina Yannatou, Vusi Mahlasela, Angelique Kidjo, Emeline Michel, and GlobeSonic. HENDRICKSON

At 8, Joe’s Pub, 425 Lafayette Street, 212.539.8770

 


SUNDAY

JANUARY 11


Music

KIMYA DAWSON

There’s no one like her and never has been: childishness felt and earned, wordplay inebriated without chemical stimulation, wisdom worthy of antifolk’s unofficial den mother. Her stagecraft consists of a total refusal to pretend she’s better than you, which strikes some as irresponsible. So just concentrate on the songs. With Jim Flynn. CHRISTGAU

At 8:30, Knitting Factory, 74 Leonard Street, 212.219.3006

STEW

Welcome to the kingdom of Stew, a psychedelic cabaret star for whom irony is but one tool in an oversized kit that ranges from the Afro-baroque concerns of, say, OutKast to the melodic and lyrical depth of, say, Sondheim. His recent Something Deeper Than These Changes may be his most “personal” album, but his best songs are still inspired by magic substances that, like the singer himself, can change the way you think. GEHR

At 9:30, Joe’s Pub, 425 Lafayette Street, 212.539.8770


MONDAY

JANUARY 12


Books

DOUGLAS A. MARTIN+EVE KOSOFSKY SEDGWICK

Poet and novelist Martin is the literary equivalent of Morrissey—only he’s not afraid to tell you what he wants. His 2002 novel, Outline of My Lover, begins like a redacted Portrait of the Artist, filtered through the confusion of emerging sexual identity and a prettily gray demeanor: “I am a morbid child and wish [my house] were a mausoleum.” Fittingly, he teamed up with musicians Michael Stipe and Grant Lee Phillips, among others, for The Haiku Year, a collection of daily musings between the authors, which will be reissued by Soft Skull Press in March. Titles include “Boy With a Hickey,” “Everything’s Golden,” and “Giving Up on You Finally Coming.” We’re hoping poet Eve Kosofsky Sedgwick (Fat Art, Thin Art) reads her Seussian “Pandas in Trees.” REIDY

At 8, St. Mark’s Church in-the-Bowery, 131 East 10th Street, 212.674.0910


TUESDAY

JANUARY 13


Theater

‘WOMEN ON FIRE’

Obie and multiple Tony Award winner Judith Ivey was lauded for her performance when this solo show, written by Irene O’Garden, opened in the middle of last fall’s blizzard of theater events. For those who weren’t keeping up, Ivey’s giving us another five weeks to marvel at her versatility as she embodies a parade of American women from all walks of life. FEINGOLD

Through February 8, Cherry Lane Theatre, 38 Commerce Street, 212.239.6200