Our NYC events in January calendar is the perfect tonic for a holiday hangover. Start the year off right by checking out the best events at popular New York attractions, including the best NYC concerts in January and new theater performances. From taking a chilly dip in the ocean at the Polar Bear Club New Year’s Day Swim in Coney Island to celebrating Martin Luther King Day, or freeing your legs from the tyranny of trousers at Improv Everywhere's No Pants Subway Ride, there are so many wonderful things to do in the winter here.
RECOMMENDED: Full NYC events calendar for 2017
Featured events in January 2017
There is plenty to do in NYC on New Year’s Day, so shake off your hangover and get ready to start off 2017 with a bang. Strip down to your skivvies and take part in the annual New Year’s Day Swim at Coney Island, indulge in verse and good food at the annual New Year’s Day Marathon Benefit Reading and more.
Lost in New York? Every Christmas, thousands of New Yorkers (and tourists) find their way to the bright and brilliant nexus of town, the Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree. Whether you’re stopping by the tree for ice-skating, the Radio City Christmas Spectacular you’re certain to feel the magic when you witness the wonder of the Norway Spruce illuminated in over 50,000 LED lights.
The Public presents edgy new works in a top-notch festival curated by Mark Russell. Among the American offerings are new pieces by 600 Highwaymen, Waterwell, Nikki Appino and Saori Tsukada, the Bengsons, Keith A. Wallace and Deborah Stein, Manual Cinema and Marga Gomez. Offerings at partner venues include work by multiple international artists: Belarus Free Theatre, Tania El Khoury, Eko Nugroho and Wayang Bocor and Philippe Quesne, as well as German troupe Rimini Protokoll’s Top Secret International (State 1), staged in the Egyptian Wing of the Brooklyn Museum.
Each January, Winter Jazzfest hosts a stellar lineup over five nights. Its signature two-night Greenwich Village marathon brings vets and up-and-comers, hordes of music fans and a palpable air of excitement to an array of cozy downtown venues. The shows aren’t individually ticketed, so a wristband grants you access to any of each night’s shows—as long as a given club doesn’t hit capacity, that is.
In January 2002, Improv Everywhere’s Charlie Todd produced the first-ever No Pants Subway Ride and posted the event on YouTube, where the short clip quickly gained popularity. Now it has turned into one of the group's most anticipated events, as thousands of New Yorkers continue the funny tradition on subway cars all across Gotham. Donning winter clothes, minus their pants, the straphangers share the same goal: to confuse bystanders.
We don’t know about you, but our inner child could always use a snow day, and that’s where Central Park Winter Jam comes in. We’ve eagerly marked our calendars for the annual sports event located at one of the best NYC parks—Central Park. The NYC Parks and Recreation event includes ice-skating, sledding, snowboarding, grub and more, so get ready to join New Yorkers of all ages for one of the best things to do in winter.
Free NYC events in January 2017
Jesse Eigner returns with the seventeenth edition of her sweet free night of comedy, inviting Wendy Steiner, Crystian F Ramirez, Caitlin Peluffo, Petey Rancel, Alex Carabaño, Hannah Boone and Luke Mones to the stage. Stick around for free ice cream treats at the end of the show.
Theater review by Raven Snook Move over, Wonder Woman: There’s a new shero in town. In Alexandre Dumas’s 1844 French novel The Three Musketeers, the aspiring swashbuckler D’Artagnan insists he’s “not a boy.” That’s literally the case in Classical Theatre of Harlem’s spirited staging, which casts the winning Miriam Hyman in the role—and boy, is she worth idolizing. She easily keeps up with the sword-fighting trio of the title, both in battle and in the bedroom, as they seduce ladies and fight against the tyranny of Cardinal Richelieu (Michael Early) and his evil agents Rochefort (a menacing R.J. Foster) and Milady de Winter (Piera Van de Weil, pretty and deadly). And in her acting, Hyman bests everyone else onstage; she alone proves able to navigate the production’s tonal inconsistency.Although this free, alfresco, family-friendly show has many strong elements—Rachel Dozier-Ezell’s sumptuous 17th-century costumes, Emmanuel Brown’s lively fight sequences, an adventuresome cast—its attempt to fuse comedy with action-adventure doesn’t always fly. Catherine Bush’s streamlined script is sober and straightforward, but director Jenny Bennett has thrown in anachronistic jokes and gags, some of which work better than others. (Audiences were delighted at the Musketeers’ dabbing.) Sluggish pacing also prevents the production from being a total victory. Still, it’s a worthy effort with many exhilarating moments, especially when Hyman is onstage. You’ll be all for this one. Richard Rodger
Everything you need to know about visiting Smorgasburg (90 Kent Ave; East Dr at Lincoln Rd). At this massive grub hub, there’s only one rule: Come hungry. The Brooklyn Flea spin-off draws more than 20,000 to 30,000 visitors per week, with a slew of 75 to 100 incredible food vendors doling out everything from Dutch waffles to pasta doughnuts. Where is it?Depends on when you go. For the summer 2017 season, the fest is in Williamsburg’s East River State Park (90 Kent Ave) on Saturdays and Prospect Park’s Breeze Hill (East Dr at Lincoln Rd) on Sundays. Additionally, starting mid-July 2017, Manhattanites won’t have to cross the river to taste the treats. A Smorgasburg Soho is coming to 76 Varick St, and will be open seven days a week, with a half-dozen vendors on the weekdays, swelling to as many as twenty on the weekends. When can I go?Smorgasburg is open year-round. The summer months might be the most popular, running from April through October at 11am to 6pm on Saturdays and Sundays, but in the winter months (November to March), the market joins forces with Brooklyn Flea and moves indoors. This past winter, the indoor Smorg was located at Skylight One Hanson (1 Hanson Place) on weekends from 10am to 6pm. Is there anywhere to sit?There are some picnic tables set up by the Smorgasburg team, but don’t plan on snatching one unless you have patience of steel. The organizers encourage you to bring picnic blankets with which to sit on the lawns of East River State Park or Prospect Pa
Once again, the city becomes a movable ode to Bird for a weekend in August. While this fest may be named for the legendary Charlie Parker, SummerStage’s jazz program isn’t stuck in the past. This year, the 25th anniversary, features boundary-pushing talent, presented over four days, including tap dance virtuoso and choreographer Jason Samuels Smith, saxophonist Joshua Redman's quartet and clarinet player Anat Cohen.
If you’re getting baked on the beach, time your sunbathing to coincide with Carter Van Pelt’s monthly skankathon, which welcomes local selectors and legends. Stake out a spot on the sand and you’ll still be able to hear the ska, rocksteady, dub, lovers rock and early dancehall emanating from the booming speaker stack.
Travel to beautiful Hong Kong without ever leaving the city thanks to this annual event at Flushing Meadows–Corona Park, now in it’s 26th year. Around 180 teams gather at the lake to race on long boats while paddling to the beat of their boat’s drummer at this culture fest inspired by Chinese tradition. On land, you can join in on the fun with music and dance performances, martial arts demonstrations and food-court vendors selling Asian cuisine like steamed dumplings, pork-belly buns and frozen delights such as Sno Biz shaved ice.
Music events in January 2017
Fifity songs written on 50 instruments celebrating 50 years of life—what more would you expect from the guy whose musical project centers on taking mundane concepts to the extreme? In what feels like the spiritual successor to the monumental 69 Love Songs, Stephin Merritt's upcoming 50 Song Memoir is another vast conceptual collection of charming yet cuttingly sardonic diddies, which the singer-songwriter will play in its entirety over the course of these two nights.
Justin Vernon's ascendancy—from recording the debut Bon Iver album alone in a Wisconsin cabin to meeting up with Kanye West in Hawaii to collaborate on My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy—might just be the quintessential indie-rock success story. His new album 22, A Million caught us all unawares, though, with its bizarre witchhouse-esque song titles and unexpected left-turns from folk-pop uplift into stuttering experimental electronics. Songs like "10 d E A T h b R e a s T" see the ex-folkster driving for full-throttle sonic maximalism while retaining his unmistakeable ear for intimate, heartfelt lyricism—or in other words, Yeezus seems to have left quite a mark on Vernon, and we are oh so thankful.
Brothers Max and Andrew Savage, along with their bandmates, are doing the once-a-generation job of stripping rock & roll back to something tight, primal and brilliant. Tonight the prolific, fruitfully quirky local indie-rock faves play a special year-end multimedia event with X_____X (Craig Bell of Rocket From The Tombs), and Flasher. Also on the menu is a sound installation by Eaters, a gallery of Andrew Savage‘s artwork, films by Joey Pizza Slice, a Dull Toolsrecord shop and other TBA pop-ups.
Endlessly inventive MC Young Thug is nothing short of high-powered. The Atlanta native exploded in 2014 with the potent, unhinged “Danny Glover” and the sticky, triumphant “Lifestyle” that made more seasoned rappers look old-fashioned. Never one to pronounce a syllable the same way twince, listening to Thugger is like watching someone invent a new language in real time. His newest release, JEFFREY, demonstrates both his endless talent for conjuring earwormy hooks as well as a piercing eye for transgressive fashion. Recent XXL Freshman pick 21 Savage opens.
Hyped young MC Miller's artistry progressed leaps and bounds in the period between his critically-maligned debut and much-improved sophomore effort. The upward mobility seems to have resulted in some lofty artistic ambitions with this year's utterly surprising concept album, The Divine Feminine, a record which forgoes his original subject matters of Nikes, senior skip days and pizza to explicate the nuances of intimacy, distance and the "divine feminine energy of the planet." Okay.
Connoisseurs of primo psychedelic fuzz rawk, everything from Hendrix's Band of Gypsys to contemporary heavyweights such as Clutch, will find sweet release in the molten jams of Earthless. Here the San Diego trio sets out to solidify their reputation for delivering adrenaline-inducing sets that will leave you reverberating all the way home.
Boston indie label Run For Cover Records is taking over Webster Hall for its inaugural festival, and they're bringing some of their favorite bands with them. The line-up includes British rockers Basement, dream pop group Turnover and lo-fi band Elvis Depressedly.
The artist formerly known as Mos Def—and before that, Dante Terrell Smith—Bey visits the Apollo for a show that's billed as one of his last US performances. The rapper has been out of the spotlight in recent years, living in South Africa and making news after attempting to leave the country with a world passport. On the music front, he announced forthcoming releases with collaborators including Ferrari Sheppard and Mannie Fresh. While this gig was set to celebrate one of his previous albums, Bey has since stated he'll be debuting new music here.
Kurt Vile is a tuneful Philadelphia psych-pop artist whose work tilts at times toward the disconcertingly raw. Expect tunes from b’lieve i'm goin down, the excellent follow-up to his much-hyped 2013 release Wakin on a Pretty Daze. Filling out the bill is Brooklyn mainstays Woods: Their latest, City Sun Eater in the River of Light, incorporates Ethiopian jazz and jammy reggae grooves into the band's fuzz-fried sound.
Looking for more things to do?
Concord Hill offers an approachable and seasonal menu with specials that change daily. We have a rotating wine list that is focused on biodynamic and natural wines, a beer list that focuses on local craft beers and we serve creative soju based cocktails. Join us for $1 Oysters and happy hour daily from 4-6!!