Drunken Shakespeare Bar Nine; 7:30pm; free
The Night Shift, which describes itself as a “working class theater” group, hosts this inebriated reading of Shakespearean monologues. Want to see if you can recite Hamlet’s “To be, or not to be” after a few brews? Step up to the mike, or just sit back and soak in the iambs.
Taste of the Terminal Grand Central Terminal, Vanderbilt Hall; 11am and 4pm; free
Enjoy free tastings from select Grand Central shops and restaurants every Monday in April at Vanderbilt Hall. Participating eateries include Murray's Cheese, Li-Lac Chocolate and Juice Press, offering bites and swallows to commuters and curious passersby alike.
Smashing Pumpkins + Liz Phair Beacon Theatre; 8pm; $55–$85
Building off last year's In Plainsong tour, angsty '90s icon Billy Corgan is taking his latest Smashing Pumpkins ensemble out on the road. But don't expect the alt-rock nostalgia to be fuzz-driven—this time, the band is leaving the distortion pedals behind in favor of acoustic explorations of its catalogue. And look out in the upcoming year for a new album—the final LP in its Teargarden by Kaleidyscope cycle—inspired by the stripped-down live sounds.
Deep Space Cielo; 10pm; $20, with e-flyer free before 11pm or $12 after
Dance-music deity François K's weekly Deep Space soiree focuses on dub in all its glorious, echo-drenched forms but extends its reach to all types of underground dance music. The only dress code is "an open mind." If that's a stretch, the evening's futuristic vibes will set the tone.
Gotham Writers Workshop Open House; 7pm; free
If you feel your inner Joan Didion, Maureen Dowd or Roald Dahl is just waiting to make its mark on the world, try a free Gotham workshop. It offers dozens of sample one-hour classes, from memoir writing to screenwriting. Get a peek at what a class would be like while enjoying some free wine and bites. Registration is required online, but classes often accommodate walk-ins.
Pop-up Magazine BAM Howard Gilman Opera House; 7:30pm; $25–$70
The best elements of your favorite magazines come to life onstage, with a mix of music, photography, film and more. This year's one-night-only performers include writers Daniel Alarcón and Claire Hoffman, radio hosts Molly Webster and Alex Cohen, and many more.
Punderdome 3000 Littlefield; 8pm; $8, at the door $10
Jo Firestone and her Rodney Dangerfield impersonator father, Fred, host this beloved competition, in which the first 18 individuals or duos to sign up at the door attempt to pun-up each other's spontaneously produced word-play. Winners are determined by a "human clap-o-meter" and go home with a kitchen appliance.
Underground Pig Feast Saxon + Parole; 7pm; $75
Every month, this Noho hot spot cooks up a swine, taps open a big ol’ keg, cranks tunes and invites hungry and thirsty folks to its casual family-style feast—with all the booze and grub you can eat and drink! The dinner takes place in the restaurant's exclusive underground lair, where Chef Brad prepares seasonal fare such as spring vegetable crudité and black babaganoush, grilled asparagus, truffled mac n' cheese, S+P's corn bread and rhubarb-strawberry pie with housemade vanilla ice cream. Word to wise: Wear your stretchy pants.
Barkley L. Hendricks Jack Shainman Gallery; 10am; free
A mid-career artist working out of New London, Connecticut, Hendricks is as an African-American photographer and realist painter whose canvases feature bold colors and equally assertive black subjects who are often posed in a manner suggesting a rebuke to America’s ugly history of racism.
Bronx Trolly Night Bronx Museum of the Arts; 5:30pm; free
Hop aboard the Bronx trolley and head to one of the hottest cultural spots: the Bronx Museum of the Arts. A guide takes you on a museum tour, which includes CommuniTea Time with Michele Brody, an artist who encourages you to share tea and exchange stories that are transcribed onto a tea-filter quilt as part of her exhibition, “Reflections in Tea.”
Brooklyn Poetry Slam BRIC House; 7pm; free
Grab a black turtleneck and a cup of joe and start snapping your fingers for Brooklyn’s finest up-and-coming poets, hosted by writer Mahogany L. Browne. This special event, which is equally an intergenerational poetry slam and an open mic, features artists responding to city culture, national issues and the exhibitions on view at BRIC House, with music provided by DJ Jive Poetic.
Polari Presents: An Evening of Decadent Filth House of Yes; 8pm; Movie screening $7, before midnight $5, after midnight $10
Rejoice in shameless, tasteless rapture as the House of Yes becomes a one-night altar to the Pope of Trash, John Waters. Watch the seminal Divine classic Pink Flamingos at 8pm, then join a polyester bacchanal with gogo dancing, circus acts, dirty drag and the most obscene dancing this side of the Corny Collins show. Cha Cha heels encouraged.
Woman to Woman Comedy at Girls Gone Hilarious Gotham Comedy Club; 7pm; $20
A power pack of hilarious women—including Judy Gold, Claudia Cogen, Robin Cloud and Kate Clinton— takes over the Gotham stage, thanks to Lynx, the Women's network of Out Professionals. If there's one thing these four comedy veterans can agree on, it's their love of NYC, so prepare for a real and rowdy night at Gotham.
Women of Letters Joe’s Pub at the Public Theater; 7pm; $20
The Australian literary salon returns stateside, inviting notable women writers and performers to air their dirty laundry in the form of personal letters crafted just for the occasion.
YNY Silent Auction A+E Studios; 7pm; $40, VIP $250
Spruce up your art collection—and get a buzz while you're at it—for a good cause! Young New Yorkers Silent Art Auction, which honors Shepard Fairey and dozens of prolific international street artists, invites you to bid on more than 100 pieces of contemporary artwork by socially-conscious urban artists. All of the proceeds go directly toward Young New Yorkers—an arts-based program, which helps court-involved youngsters dismiss their criminal records. A ticket ($40) gets you complimentary beer from Sixpoint Brewery, vodka cocktails as well as hors d'oeuvres and cupcakes, while you mentally plot where to display your new painting or sculpture.
Havana Film Festival New York at various locations; 1:30pm, 5:30pm; $12
The annual festival dedicated to shorts and features from Latin America brings over forty exciting new films to NYC for its seventeenth showcase. Check out movies like the Benicio Del Toro-produced VIVA, about a drag makeup artist in Havana; or Zoom, a psychedelic drama about a comic book creator whose fantasies become far too real.
Q-Boro Literary Crawl at various locations; 6:30pm; $22
Some of the brightest stars in Queens' burgeoning literary scene will be reading and performing their work at bars, cafes and bookstores all over Long Island City. Head to this "choose your own adventure"-style crawl that lets you choose between dozens of events leading up to a boozy and brainy afterparty at the end of the night.
National Beer Day at Grand Central Terminal; 6pm; free
This one's for the beer lovers. Celebrate National Beer Day between your commute with special offers and discounts on suds offered inside Grand Central Terminal. The deals include 20 percent off all draughts at Beer Table to Go, a complimentary tasting of a variety of brews at Michael Jordan's The Steakhouse N.Y.C. as well as $3 ShackMesiter Ales at Shake Shack wit any purchase of a ShackBurger.
Paranormal Investigation Morris-Jumel Mansion; 7pm; $30, call to register
Ain't afraid of no ghost? Good, because you might see the spirit of the late Eliza Jumel during this spooktacular investigation of the Morris-Jumel Mansion in Roger Morris Park. During the tour, you'll learn the basics of ghost hunting while learning the history behind the landmark.
New York Antiquarian Book Fair Park Avenue Armory; 5pm; $25, run of show $40, students $10
If you've got a thing for musty old books, this is your fair, with literary works from approximately 200 vendors displayed inside one of NYC's grandest halls. Look out for tomes dating back to the 14th century, including illuminated books of hours and other hidden gems.