Volume 78 - Number 36 / February 4 - 10 2009
West and East Village, Chelsea, Soho, Noho, Little Italy, Chinatown and Lower East Side, Since 1933

The A-List

Compiled by Sarah Norris

Book Talk

Photo by Marion Ettinger
S.J. Rozan, award-winning mystery writer.

Chinatown Noir
Local authors S.J. Rozan, of the Lydia Chin mysteries, and Henry Chang, who wrote the “Chinatown Beat” trilogy, will read from their work and discuss how Chinatown informs their novels. Richard Price described Chang’s fiction as “classic noir, filled with longing, violence, and that uniquely urban melancholy, but it also brings something new to the table, a loving specificity of a people and place, the multicultures of New York’s Chinatown, that has rarely if ever been encountered in fiction before.” Tues., Feb. 10 at 6:30 p.m. Free. The Tenement Museum Shop. 108 Orchard St. (btwn Delancey & Broome). 212-982-8420; rsvp to events@tenement.org.


Alessandra Belloni promotes the traditions of Southern Italian folk culture.

Daughters of Cybele
Singer and dancer Alessandra Belloni has curated a small group of women who use voice, percussion and ritual dance to honor the healing power of female energy in “Daughters of Cybele.” The evening will feature sacred rhythms, chants and dances in honor of the Black Madonna and Earth. In the tradition of Roman priestesses who played the tambourine in worship of Dionysus, god of ecstasy and wine, and the Earth goddess Cybele, these women drummers and dancers celebrate life and peace. Fri., Feb. 13 at 7 p.m. $24. Open Center. 83 Spring St. (btwn Crosby & Broadway). 212-219-2527, opencenter.org.


Jessica Delfino reads up on fungi.

The Jessica Delfino Dirty Folk Rock Show
In this monthly children’s show for adults, Jessica Delfino mixes local celebrity guests, crafts, magical silliness, songs, videos and jokes. For this new episode, “It’s Important to be Beautiful,” she imagines Mr. Rogers as a ukelele-playing woman, and examines beauty standards through puppetry, dance explosions, comedy, crafts and cleavage. Delfino sings, dances and offers up energetic, albeit squirm-inducing, comedy, and will be joined by guest performers Carla Rhodes, Rosie Rebel, Victor Varnado, Diane O’Debra and others. Thurs., Feb. 12 at 10 p.m. Ages 21+. Slipper Room. 167 Orchard St. (at Stanton). 212-253-7246, slipperroom.com.


Photo by Davida Nemeroff

Owen Pallett of Final Fantasy

Final Fantasy and Matt Smith
Final Fantasy (singer/composer Owen Pallett) is known for his experimental-pop solo violin concerts, which are so process-based they allow the audience to witness the construction of his songs in real time. He plays the violin into a sampler that loops back previously played parts as he plays new music simultaneously. For this half-rehearsed and half-improvised performance, Final Fantasy presents a dynamic set of live violin and electronics with musician Matt Smith. Fri., Feb. 6 at 8 p.m. & 10 p.m. Sat., Feb. 7 at 8 p.m. $10. The Kitchen. 512 W. 19th St. 212-255-5793, thekitchen.org.


American composer Marc Blitzstein wrote the steeltown musical in the 1930s.

Marc Blitzstein’s 1937 musical “The Cradle Will Rock” is a Brechtian allegory of corruption and corporate greed.   Set in “Steeltown, USA,” it follows the efforts of Larry Foreman to unionize and otherwise combat wicked businessman Mr. Mister. Blitzstein portrays a whole panoply of societal figures: Mr. Mister’s vicious, outwardly genteel philanthropic wife and spoiled children, sell-out artists, poor shopkeepers, immigrant families, a faithless priest and an endearing prostitute named Moll. One of the most storied cultural events of the New Deal period, the original production was part of the Federal Theatre Project and was directed by Orson Welles. Sun., Feb. 8 at 3 p.m. $15. St. Mark’s Church. 131 E. 10th St. (at 2nd Ave.) 212-477-1594, downtownmusicproductions.org.

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