Chelsea certainly puts the art in the heart of New York. The neighborhood is home to dozens of galleries with the best free art in NYC on view—from Gagosian to David Zwirner galleries—and the newly minted Whitney Museum of American Art, one of the best museums in the city. Once you've had your fill, head to the High Line to lounge on tree-lined paths with views of the river, then head to one of the best Chelsea restaurants or bars, like Del Posto and the NoMad. The sky's the limit in this neighborhood!
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To untimely rip and paraphrase a line from Macbeth: Our eyes are made the fools of the other senses, or else worth all the rest. A multitude of searing sights crowd the spectator's gaze at the bedazzling and uncanny theater installation Sleep No More. Your sense of space and depth---already compromised by the half mask that audience members must don---is further blurred as you wend through more than 90 discrete spaces, ranging from a cloistral chapel to a vast ballroom floor. Directors Felix Barrett and Maxine Doyle, of the U.K. troupe Punchdrunk, have orchestrated a true astonishment, turning six warehouse floors and approximately 100,000 square feet into a purgatorial maze that blends images from the Scottish play with ones derived from Hitchcock movies—all liberally doused in a distinctly Stanley Kubrick eau de dislocated menace. An experiential, Choose Your Own Adventure project such as this depends on the pluck and instincts of the spectator. You can follow the mute dancers from one floor to the next, or wander aimlessly through empty spaces. I chose the latter, discovering a room lined with empty hospital beds; a leafless wood in which a nurse inside a thatched cottage nervously checks her pocket watch; an office full of apothecary vials and powders; and the ballroom, forested with pine trees screwed to rolling platforms (that would be Birnam Wood). A Shakespearean can walk about checking off visual allusions to the classic tragedy; the less lettered can just revel inRead more
Three demons of innovation collaborate for the first time: choreographer-dancer Nichole Canuso, director Lars Jan and theater artist Geoff Sobelle (whose The Object Lesson was a marvel at BAM in 2014). Their piece takes a postmodern look at connection and isolation in the digital age.Read more
Inspired by a rectangular form of 18th-century dance, conceiver-curator Lar Lubovitch invites four choreographers—Pam Tanowitz, RoseAnne Spradlin, Tere O’Connor and Loni Landon—to create modern variations on the form, presented in rep over two weeks. A specially constructed stage at the Joyce allows the works to be viewed from all four sides.Read more
In addition to her skills as a chameleonic singer and actor, Amber Martin is a consummate host who has spent years at the hub of the downtown alt-performance world. Every Monday at Sid Gold’s, Chelsea’s swank retro piano bar, she invites a different pal to perform an hour-long set of music and/or stories. The chummy party vibe continues afterward, when audiences are encouraged to stick around to mingle or even sing a song or two themselves. Alt-cabaret superstar Molly Pope takes the mike on May 23.Read more
Hosts Dara Katz and Betsy Kenney have recruited some of the city's most medicore dance crews to face off for eternal glory (and retribution for being picked on at middle school dances). Big name guest judges preside over the cabbage patches and stanky legs. Beware of sprains.Read more