My family lives in New York City and I always look forward to going to see them…and the city. I just returned from a week there. The main reason I flew there was to celebrate my grandson’s high school graduation, which was wonderful, but I also managed to do some very NYC things.
Graduation was on Tuesday evening, so I went to TKTS in Time Square on Wednesday to buy discounted matinee tickets to a play. Scored a great seat to CLYBOURNE PARK at the Walter Kerr Theatre. The first act takes place in 1959 and act two takes place in 2009. The superb actors were Crystal A. Dickenson, Brendan Griffin, Damon Gupton, Christina Kirk, Annie Parisse, Jeremy Shamos, and Frank Wood. They all play dual roles. Clybourne Park (2010) is a play by Bruce Norris written in response to Lorraine Hansberry‘s play A Raisin in the Sun (1959); it portrays fictional events set before and after the Hansberry play and is loosely based on historical events. It premiered in February 2010 at Playwrights Horizons in New York. As described by the Washington Post, the play “applies a modern twist to the issues of race and housing and aspirations for a better life.” The play was awarded the 2011 Pulitzer Prize for Drama and the 2012 Tony Award for Best Play. Highly recommended!
Before the play I ate lunch at LILLIES on 49th St. This is an Irish-Victorian Bar and Restaurant honoring the life of Lillie Langtry (1853-1929). Filled with ornate wooden carvings and antiquities from an estate in Northern Ireland, the establishment combines an authentic ostentatious decor with a down to-earth ambiance that represents one of the last great Victorian “gin palaces”. They serve good food and drink all day and into the evening. Great place to go before or after the theatre.
Have you ever been to BIRDLAND, named the JAZZ corner of the world by Charlie Parker? It’s on West 44th St. Take in the Birdland Big Band on Fridays at 5 pm. $20 cover charge and one drink minimum. They also serve food. If you love jazz put this on your must do list. The band is conducted by drummer Rob Middleton, and consists of fabulous Broadway musicians that play at BIRDLAND before going back to Broadway to play in the orchestra for any one of the wonderful musicals playing there. This is top of the line jazz!
New York has museums, museums, museums! MOMA (The Museum of Modern Art) is one of my favorites. I ate lunch in the 5th floor cafe and then took in painting and sculpture from the 1880s-1980s on the 4th and 5th floor and ended with a walk through the newly refurbished outdoor sculpture garden. Entrance is $18 for seniors.