Brooklyn Heights Blog » Arts and Entertainment Dispatches from America's first suburb Sun, 17 Jun 2018 02:05:05 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Bargemusic This Weekend Thu, 14 Jun 2018 01:58:02 +0000

Pianist Jerome Lowenthal (photo) begins Bargemusic’s weekend at 8:00 Friday evening, June 15 with “Four Faces of ‘F'” (not to worry; that’s the musical key) featuring works by Mozart, Schubert, Chopin, Brahms, Liszt, Bartok, Sinding, and Debussy. On Saturday evening, June 16 at 8:00, and again on Sunday afternoon, June 17 at 4:00, the Semplice Players, joined by violinist Mark Peskanov and Alexander Fiterstein on clarinet, perform works by Haydn and Mozart. There are details for each concert and you may buy tickets here.

On Saturday afternoon at 4:00 there will be a free, family oriented “Music in Motion” concert, co-sponsored by the Brooklyn Bridge Park Conservancy. Doors open at 3:45; first come, first seated.

Photo: Bach Cantatas Website.

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Free Outdoor Performances of Theater 2020’s As U Like It in Cadman Plaza Park This Weekend Mon, 11 Jun 2018 12:38:27 +0000

This coming Saturday and Sunday evenings, June 16 and 17, starting at 6:00 PM, Theater 2020, Brooklyn Heights’ own professional stage company, will present As U Like It, a modern adaptation of Shakespeare’s classic comedy, with original music by Jason Wynn, at Cadman Plaza Park. Your correspondent saw the show on Saturday, and can attest that it is indeed a “rollicking” performance.

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Metropolitan Opera Recital at Brooklyn Bridge Park Wednesday Evening Sun, 10 Jun 2018 04:09:19 +0000

The Metropolitan Opera’s Summer Recital Series returns to Brooklyn Bridge Park, Harbor View Lawn, Pier 1 this Wednesday evening, June 13, from 7:00 to 9:00. This year’s recitals feature soprano Latonia Moore, tenor Mario Chang, and baritone Joshua Hopkins (photo, by Simon Pauly). It’s free. There’s more information here.

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Bargemusic This Weekend Thu, 07 Jun 2018 03:02:44 +0000

This Friday evening, June 8 at 8:00 Bargemusic’s weekend begins with a performance of works by Schumann and Beethoven by pianist Martin Helmchen. On Saturday evening, June 9 at 8:00 there will be a tribute to the composer Charles Wuorinen (photo, with his cat Lepton, by Nina Roberts) on the occasion of his eightieth birthday, with a performance by soprano Mary Mackenzie and pianist Steven Beck of Wuorinen’s works, along with those of Schoenberg, and Liszt. On Sunday afternoon, June 10 at 4:00, the Apollo Trio will perform works by Mozart and Korngold. There are details for each concert and you may buy tickets here.

On Saturday afternoon at 4:00 there will be a free, family oriented “Music in Motion” concert, co-sponsored by the Brooklyn Bridge Park Conservancy. Doors open at 3:45; first come, first seated.

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“Sing for Hope” Pianos Return Wed, 06 Jun 2018 02:53:01 +0000

The much loved “Sing for Hope” pianos are back. They are at many locations throughout Brooklyn and the City, including two in Brooklyn Bridge Park: one on the esplanade of Pier One in front of the Granite Prospect, and one on Pier Six. They will be here through Sunday, June 24. Go tickle those ivories!

I had hoped to get a photo of the piano on Pier One early this evening, perhaps with someone playing it, but found it draped in plastic against the forecast of rain. I’ve used a photo I took of the piano that was there in 2013.

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Bargemusic This Weekend Thu, 31 May 2018 02:15:13 +0000

Bargemusic’s weekend begins on Friday evening, June 1 at 8:00 when violinist Gregor Huebner, pianist Klaus Mueller, bassist Veit Huebner, and percussionist Jerome Goldschmidt present “El Violin Latino”.

On Saturday evening, June 2, Michael Lewin will present two concerts of “Piano Music of the Americas”. The first, beginning at 6:00, will feature works by Menotti, Griffes, Gottschalk, Gershwin, Wild, and Golijov. The second, beginning at 8:00, will include works by Gottschalk, Nazareth, Pinto, Villa-Lobos, Lecouna, Gershwin, Ginastera, Wild, and Golijov.

Sunday afternoon, June 3 at 2:00 (note the earlier than usual start) the Spektral Quartet (photo), named “Chicagoans of the Year” by the Chicago Tribune, will perform works by Brahms and Schoenberg. There are details for each concert and you may buy tickets here.

On Saturday afternoon at 4:00 there will be a free, family oriented “Music in Motion” concert, co-sponsored by the Brooklyn Bridge Park Conservancy. Doors open at 3:45; first come, first seated.

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Bargemusic This Weekend Thu, 24 May 2018 03:06:10 +0000

Pianist Donald Berman (photo) will lead off Bargemusic’s Memorial Day weekend concert series on Friday evening, May 25 at 8:00, playing works by J.S. Bach, John Aylward, Elena Ruehr, Eric Moe, and Charles Ives. On Saturday evening, May 26 at 8:00, violinist and Bargemusic Artistic Director Mark Peskanov, cellist Julian Schwarz, and pianist Misha Dichter will perform works by Gerard Schwarz and Franz Schubert. On Sunday afternoon, May 27 at 4:00 pianist Marika Bournaki, who denies being a rock star, will perform the first in a series of concerts at Bargemusic in which she will play all 32 of Beethoven’s piano sonatas. There are details for each concert and you may buy tickets here.

On Saturday afternoon at 4:00 there will be a free, family oriented “Music in Motion” concert, co-sponsored by the Brooklyn Bridge Park Conservancy. Doors open at 3:45; first come, first seated.

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“Window Concert” Tomorrow Sat, 19 May 2018 19:36:59 +0000

Tomorrow (Sunday, May 20th) beginning at 4:00 PM, if you go to the corner of State and Henry streets, you may enjoy the ninth annual “4th Window Concert.” This year’s concert features a copious selection of music, including pieces by the Beatles, Led Zeppelin, Boston, Guns & Roses, Kansas (I know you’re all eager, as I am, to hear “Dust in the Wind” once again), Nirvana, Black Keys, the Red Hot Chili Peppers, Billy Joel (who channeled the Heights’ own Harry Chapin for his first hit, “Piano Man”), and others. It sounds like great fun. If the weather cooperates, I’ll be there.

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“Glassbarge” and Schooner Lois McClure at Pier 5, Brooklyn Bridge Park Sat, 19 May 2018 16:22:20 +0000

The “Glassbarge” and the canal schooner Lois McClure (photo) are docked at Pier 5, Brooklyn Bridge Park through Memorial Day, May 28. They will be open for tours every day from 9:00 AM to 6:00 PM. Tours of the Glassbarge, which is owned by the Corning Museum of Glass, and that include lectures and glassblowing demonstrations, are free, but require reservations, which you may make here. Tours of the Lois McClure are self guided, and require no reservations.

Brooklyn is the vessels’ first stop on a summer long tour celebrating the 200th anniversary of the opening of the Erie Canal. From here they will sail up the Hudson to Albany, then across the Erie Canal to Buffalo, stopping at towns along the way. Returning from Buffalo, they will take a side trip southward through Seneca Lake, one of the Finger Lakes, to Watkins Glen. From there, a ceremonial land journey will end with the tour’s conclusion in Corning.

Lois McClure is a replica of a schooner built in Burlington, Vermont in 1862 for the trade between there and other ports along Lake Champlain as well as southward through the canal connecting to the Hudson and westward on the New York State canal system. It’s possible the original McClure visited Brooklyn, perhaps carrying grain taken on in Buffalo for transshipment to oceangoing vessels at the Erie Basin. She was able to navigate the canals, with their low bridges, because her masts and spars could be folded down. This meant she needed an external source of power. On this trip, that will be supplied by the South Street Seaport Museum’s historic tug W.O. Decker. South Street is a co-sponsor of the tour, along with the Corning Museum of Glass and the Lake Champlain Maritime Museum in Vergennes, Vermont, which owns the Lois McClure.

A theme of the Lois McClure’s participation is the effect of the construction of the canals, and the commerce they fostered, on the forests of New York State and New England. The schooner will be carrying a cargo of white oak and white pine seedlings to be planted in locations along the tour’s route.

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Bargemusic This Weekend Thu, 17 May 2018 02:55:01 +0000

There are only two concerts at Bargemusic this weekend. On Friday evening, May 18 at 8:00, violist Marcus Thompson (photo) and pianist Doris Stevenson will perform works by Schubert and Brahms. There are details for the concert and you may buy tickets here.

On Saturday afternoon at 4:00 there will be a free, family oriented “Music in Motion” concert, co-sponsored by the Brooklyn Bridge Park Conservancy. Doors open at 3:45; first come, first seated.

Regular programming, with Saturday evening and Sunday afternoon concerts as well as Friday evening and Music in Motion, will resume the following weekend.

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Theater 2020 Presents As U Like It Tue, 15 May 2018 02:57:38 +0000

Theater 2020, Brooklyn Heights’ own professional stage company, presents As U Like It, a contemporary adaptation of Shakespeare’s romantic comedy — the Bard’s script is here, but there is original music by Jason Wynn (no, not that Jason Wynn) — and a setting in contemporary Brooklyn.

Shakespeare tackles gender fluidity with comic gusto and director adaptor David Fuller embraces that in this romantic romp set in modern times. Meet some of the Bard’s most famous characters and speeches, including the guitar strumming melancholy Jaques (“All the world’s a stage”), the rapping jester Touchstone (who is joined by the puppet Audrey) and the most bountiful lead he ever wrote for a female, the cross dressing Rosalind.

Performances will be at The Great Room, ART NYC, at 138 South Oxford Street in Fort Greene, all starting at 8:00 PM on the following dates: Friday, May 25 through Monday, May 28; Friday, June 1 through Sunday, June 3; and Fiday, June 8 through Sunday, June 10. Tickets are $25 ($20 for seniors over 64 or students with ID); you may purchase them here. You may also reserve by emailing or calling 718-624-3614 and paying cash at the door.

There will also be two free outdoor performances, no reservations required, on the War Memorial Lawn (north end; enter from Middagh Street) at Cadman Plaza Park, starting at 6:00 PM on Saturday, June 16 and Sunday, June 17.

For both indoor and outdoor performances, the play runs for 90 minutes without intermission.

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Willowtown Fair This Saturday, May 19 Mon, 14 May 2018 03:08:01 +0000

The annual Willowtown Fair will take place on Saturday, May 19 on Willow Place (between Joralemon and State streets) from noon to 5:00 p.m. This year’s fair will include: food from Iris Cafe; live music by the Willowtown Bluegrass Band; face painters; a plant sale; a baked goods table; games (including a three legged race — see photo above from the 2014 fair, by C. Scales for BHB — and a tug-of-war); boutique tables; a raffle; a bounce castle; and antique house histories. Plenty of fun for adults and kids. Admission to the fair is free.

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Fireworks on Saturday Night Fri, 11 May 2018 17:53:44 +0000

In case you hear something that goes boom in the night , Lady Liberty will be lit up late tomorrow night:

“There will be a fireworks display near the Statue of Liberty tomorrow, 5/12, at approximately 11:45 PM. In the event of inclement weather, the fireworks display will take place on 5/13.”

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All That Shooting? It’s Not Your Imagination Thu, 10 May 2018 22:32:27 +0000

Over the last few weeks, those little multi-colored notices on trees and street signs have flourished almost as efflorescently as the white blossoms that are harbingers of spring in our neighborhood. Locals, though, don’t welcome the signs with quite as much enthusiasm as they do the blossoms.

The Brooklyn Eagle reports what we always know to be true: that film crews are taking over the streets, and merchants are none too happy about it.

“First of all, they bring their own foods. The guys working here, they’re not eating on Montague Street, that’s number one,” said George Chamoun, owner of Monty Q’s pizza at 158 Montague St. “Plus, the customers pull up, there’s no place to park.”

Chamoun added that deliveries take far longer because his drivers “have to park down by Smith Street.”

The Eagle’s Mary Frost reports that so far this year 157 daily shooting permits have been issued for our zip code–more than were issued when their ubiquity caused a moratorium a couple of years ago.

Add the increase in foot and vehicle traffic resulting from exploding development in the area, and you’ve got a recipe for short tempers, frustration, and a lot time circling the block looking for parking…not to mention a financial hit for local businesses.

Janet Allon, the spokeswoman for the city’s media office, noted that a tiny percentage of complaints to 311 involve film shoots, which she attributes to her office’s responsiveness to communities’ wanting a break from filming.

Your humble correspondent proffers an alternative view: that we’ve stopped making those calls to the city’s permit office and 311 precisely because so little is ever done and few calls are returned.

The glimmer of hope here is the implication that if we do start making the calls, perhaps those shoots will be diverted to other neighborhoods, spreading the misery more equally in the borough.

Read the Eagle for the full story



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PS8 Student Art Premiers at Guggenheim Museum Thu, 10 May 2018 20:58:34 +0000

From the “It’s never too late to report good news” files…

On the evening of April 26th the Guggenheim held an opening reception for A Year of Children 2018, an annual exhibition featuring student work from the museum’s teaching artist’s residency program, Learning Through Art.  Per the Guggenheim website, “the program sends experienced teaching artists into New York City public schools, where they collaborate with classroom teachers to develop and facilitate art projects integrated into the school curriculum.” Brooklyn Heights’ own, P.S. 8 has enriched their third and fourth grade art curriculum with this 20-week program for many years. And, as previously reported by Bklyner, two blossoming artists from the school are featured in the show, 4th Grader, Zoe and 3rd grader, Fionn.


Third grade students worked along the theme of “Finding Their Way” and fabricated soft sculptures of their “wayfinders” or landmarks that represented things they either saw, heard, felt or smelled on their travels back and forth to school.  Text accompanying the work explained the Fourth graders “learned about the concept of avatars as a representation of an alter ego or character and created their own based on aspects of their identity but with added imaginative or exaggerated elements.” Students then created relief self portraits using monoprints, stamps, foam etching prints and other methods.

IMG_5563The museum also invites at least one student per grade to act as docents. Those chosen attended training sessions, wrote a speech, practiced delivery, and spoke at the adults only opening about their work and their experience with the residency.  Fourth grader, Zoe shared, “It made me feel excited about continuing to make art, knowing that I’ve had the privilege of being a student docent at the Guggenheim.”

Congratulations to Zoe and Fionn! The exhibition is on view through June 13th.


Guggenheim Photo Credit: Creative Commons/Jean-Christophe BENOIST
Gallery Photo Credit: Caren Gandelman


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Bargemusic This Weekend Wed, 09 May 2018 23:58:03 +0000

It’s an all piano weekend at Bargemusic. The keyboard fest begins Friday evening, May 11, at 8:00 with Olga Vinokur (photo) playing works by Fanny Mendelssohn, Chopin, and Schumann. On Saturday, May 12 at 8:00 Gerald Robbins will play works by Schubert and Brahms. On Sunday afternoon, May 13 at 4:00, Misha and Cipa Dichter will play works by Schubert. There are details for each concert and you may buy tickets here.

On Saturday afternoon at 4:00 there will be a free, family oriented “Music in Motion” concert, co-sponsored by the Brooklyn Bridge Park Conservancy. Doors open at 3:45; first come, first seated.

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Some Last Minute Weekend Suggestions Fri, 04 May 2018 17:38:11 +0000

Tomorrow (Saturday, May 5) Brooklyn Bridge Park will be host to a kite festival, to be held on Pier 1’s Harbor View Lawn from noon until 2:30 PM. Admission is free. BYOK, or buy or make one there. There’s more information here. (Photo by C. Scales from 2013 festival.)

Alert reader Andrew Porter has compiled a list of Sacred Sites open house events in the neighborhood this weekend and posted it in a comment on OTW. I’m re-posting it here:

Religious Society of Friends (Quakers), 110 Schermerhorn Street, Saturday 11am-2pm & Sunday 10am-1pm

Plymouth Church, 75 Hicks Street, Saturday & Sunday 12:30pm-2:30pm

Grace Church, 254 Hicks Street, Sunday 12:30pm-4pm

Our Lady of Lebanon Catholic Maronite Cathedral, 113 Remsen Street, Saturday 10am-5pm & Sunday noon-5pm

St. Ann & the Holy Trinity, 157 Montague Street, Saturday 12pm-4pm and Sunday 12pm-3pm

First Unitarian Congregational, 119 Pierrepont Street, Saturday 10am-3pm & Sunday 1pm-3pm

There’s more information here about the Sacred Sites events (link provided by Mr. Porter).

Don’t forget the Repast Baroque Ensemble concert tonight (Friday, May 4) at 8:00 at the First Unitarian Church, and the Grace Chorale of Brooklyn concerts at Plymouth Church Saturday at 7:00 PM and Sunday at 3:00 PM.

If anyone knows of an event or events that should have been included, please tell us in a comment.

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Bargemusic This Weekend Thu, 03 May 2018 02:03:12 +0000

This Friday evening, May 4 at 8:00 and Saturday evening, May 5 at 6:00, cellist Nicholas Tzavaras (photo) and pianist Doris Stevenson will present Parts 1 and 2, respectively, of Beethoven’s complete works for cello and piano. On Sunday afternoon, May 6 at 4:00 violinist Daniel Phillips, violist Roger Tapping, cellist Natasha Brofsky, and pianist Marija Stroke will play works by Mozart and Faure. There are details for each concert and you may buy tickets here.

On Saturday afternoon at 4:00 there will be a free, family oriented “Music in Motion” concert, co-sponsored by the Brooklyn Bridge Park Conservancy. Doors open at 3:45; first come, first seated.

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“Crime” Spree Hits The Heights Tue, 01 May 2018 00:58:30 +0000

Brace yourselves, neighbors: for the next week, nowhere will be safe. The intruders will be everywhere, from Montague to Cranberry, Cadman Plaza to Hicks Street.

Some of us (this writer included) view the encroachment of TV crews as nothing short of an invading army. Others may welcome the opportunity to catch a glimpse of Mariska Hargitay as she strolls along Clark Street.

Regardless of your point of view, whether you walk or drive, it’s going to be a nightmare.







Be careful out there.

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Repast Baroque Ensemble Returns With “Bohemian Fantasy” Friday Mon, 30 Apr 2018 01:07:22 +0000

The Repast Baroque Ensemble will return to the McKinney Chapel of the First Unitarian Church, 116 Pierrepont Street (between Monroe Place and Clinton Street) on Friday evening, May 4 at 8:00, to present “Bohemian Fantasy”. The program is “[i]nspired by the improvisatory, imaginative, contemplative, and funny works by the Baroque era’s great Bohemian virtuosi”, and “explores the music of Biber and his contemporaries”. It will also include “a written-out improvised fantasy” by the members of Repast. There’s more information and buy tickets here.

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Nxivm Sex Cult Housed Secret “Pod” in Brooklyn Heights Fri, 27 Apr 2018 19:40:29 +0000

File this story under “you can’t make this stuff up!” With the arrest and arraignment of “Smallville” actress, Allison Mack on sex trafficking and other related charges, The Brooklyn Daily Eagle reports an offshoot of the pyramid scheme”self-help” group and purported cult Nxivm (pronounced NEKS-ee-əm) took up residence at “111 Hicks St., a Brooklyn Heights tower, where up to a dozen [sex] slaves allegedly stayed for various rituals over the past year, according to Frank Parlato, a former publicist for Nxivm who has turned whistleblower.”

Among the women allegedly housed in Brooklyn Heights are daughter of Dynasty actress Catherine Oxenberg, India. Artvoice blog reports Canadian “Battlestar Galactica” actress Nicki Clyne recently married Mack in order to remain in the United States and hold sway over the Brooklyn “slaves.” Mack leveraged her celebrity status to recruit victims at events held at a private residence in Williamsburg. The reported “rituals” are likely to have subjected the victims to the group’s known tactics of blackmailing with “collateral” of incriminating photos, videos or other damaging information, the branding of their bodies, starvation diets, forced labor all leading up to sexual encounters with leader Keith Raniere.

Spurred by Frank Parlato’s accounts, many news outlets have published in-depth exposes on the group’s exploits including  The New York Times,20/20, Rolling Stone and Vanity Fair. Founded in Albany, NY by Keith Raniere and associate Nancy Salzman in 1998, the group touts itself as a “multi-level marketing organization” offering “Executive Success Programs” as a series of seminars. Attendees were required to address Raniere and Salzman as “Vanguard” and “Prefect” respectively. The group has boasted billionaire Richard Branson, Dynasty actress Lynda Evans, daughter of former Mexican President Vincente Fox, Ana Cristina Fox and BET Co-Founder Sheila Johnson as patrons.

Seagram’s heiresses Sara and Clare Bronfman, are also among the group’s most entrenched devotees. Raniere was arrested in Mexico last month and Parlato reports Clare Bronfman, “a true fanatic,” has moved to South Brooklyn to be near her svengali, fund and run the organization while he is held in federal lock up in Marine Park. If convicted both Raniere and Mack face mandatory 15 years to life.

And it just gets weirder and weirder. Unsurprisingly, a television show is already in the works.

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Bargemusic this Weekend Thu, 26 Apr 2018 02:33:33 +0000

Bargemusic’s weekend begins Friday evening, April 27 at 8:00 when Australian born, New York resident pianist Lisa Moore, described in the New Yorker as “New York’s queen of avant garde piano,” (photo by Yumiko Izo) plays the complete piano works of Leoš Janaček. On Saturday evening, April 28 at 8:00 pianist Francine Kay will play works by Schumann, Chopin, Josef Suk, and Debussy. On Sunday afternoon, April 29 at 4:00 the Dorian Wind Quartet will perform works by Bach, Carter, and Childs. There are details for each concert and you may buy tickets here.

On Saturday afternoon at 4:00 there will be a free, family oriented “Music in Motion” concert, co-sponsored by the Brooklyn Bridge Park Conservancy. Doors open at 3:45; first come, first seated.

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Brooklyn Folk Festival Delights Sun, 22 Apr 2018 03:05:33 +0000

The tenth annual Brooklyn Folk Festival happened April 6th through 8th at St. Ann & the Holy Trinity Church. As it always has been, it was presented by the Jalopy Theatre and School of Music in Red Hook, now a not-for-profit institution.

The opening act on Friday evening was Little Nora Brown (photo). She’s twelve years old, and began her banjo training at six, taking instruction from the late Shlomo Pestcoe. She played a rousing set, later joined on fiddle by Stephanie Coleman. Nora demonstrated great skill with her instrument, and received a tumultuous audience response.

IMG_9773Grammy nominated Innov Gnawa are exponents of gnawa, or Moroccan trance music. This musical tradition has roots in Morocco similar to those of blues and jazz in the U.S., as it was brought there mostly by slaves from sub-Saharan Africa. At right in the photo above is Maalem Hassan Ben Jaafer, the bandleader, who plays a three-string sintir bass lute. The lyrics are chanted, call-and-response style, between Ben Jaafer and the chorus, whose members also shake hand-held instruments.

IMG_9770The Boxcutter Collective presented a puppet show featuring Judy (at right in photo above), a “tough as nails New York City grandma” who has a perils-of-Pauline sort of day, beseiged by various patriarchal figures and even attacked by birds and flowers, until she discovers and is taken into a witches’ coven that cooks up a potion to thwart Google’s attempt to take over the world.

IMG_9782This year the Festival featured a return performance — he was here in 2016 — by Claudio Montouri, the “Birdman of Rome.” He’s a popular street performer in the Eternal City. After performing some squeeze-box magic (photo above), he sat on the stage and invited children, of whom there were many at the Festival, to gather around while he played some electronic music and amused the kids with many toys arrayed around him.

IMG_9788Jerron Paxton has been a regular performer at the Festival for some time, and never fails to impress. This year did a mixture of blues, folk, and ragtime numbers, accompanying himself on guitar and banjo, and playing harmonica (photo above).

IMG_9795I couldn’t resist an entry on the Festival’s schedule for a movie, Gold, that I’d never heard of, described as follows: “Filmed in 1968 in the remote foothills of the Sierra Mountains, this wacky piece of celluloid captures the essence of the sixties with a reasonably coherent story.” The “essence of the sixties” turns out to be the ancient struggle between the followers of Hermes, the trickster god, and Apollo, the guardian of Order, as described in the context of 1946 by former Heights resident W.H. Auden in his poem “Under Which Lyre”. Seen from today’s perspective, is anything new under the sun? Your correspondent was delighted to find his late Lion’s Head drinking companion Garry Goodrow playing a prominent role. Besides, how could I hate a movie with a soundtrack that includes both the MC5 and Ramblin’ Jack Elliott? Gold’s co-director and auteur-on-the-fly (now that’s Hermetic) Bob Levis was on hand (photo above) for a lively post-viewing discussion.

IMG_9798The Down Hill Strugglers were joined by John Cohen (second from left in the photo), formerly of the New Lost City Ramblers and the Putnam String County Band, for a very lively set, highlighted, for this train buff, by a stirring version of “Casey Jones.” On guitar, at left in the photo, is Eli Smith, who also served as emcee for the Festival.

IMG_9814The Festival closed with a set by Julia Patinella, accompanied on guitar by Andreas Arnold. She did songs from the Spanish Flamenco and Latin American traditions in a voice of remarkable range and expressiveness. It was a fitting adios.

There were many other musicians and groups, as well as non-musical events and workshops, not all of which your correspondent could cover. One of these groups included cartoonist R. Crumb on mandolin. Over its ten year history, the Festival has grown in breadth and quality. We look forward to its next incarnation.

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Fireworks Tomorrow Night, Sunday, April 22 Sat, 21 Apr 2018 21:13:16 +0000

Notify NYC advises us that there will be fireworks near Ellis Island — thus easily visible from the Promenade — tomorrow evening (Sunday, April 22) starting at about 8:15 PM.

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Bargemusic This Weekend Thu, 19 Apr 2018 03:39:47 +0000

On Friday evening, April 20 at 8:00, Bargemusic will present works by Bach, Beethoven, Paganini and Sarasate, performed by Mark Peskanov on violin and Nina Kogan (photo) on piano. On Saturday evening, April 21 at 6:00, and again on Sunday afternoon, April 22 at 4:00, the Semplice Players will play works by Beethoven, Dohnanyi, and Mozart. There are details for each concert and you may buy tickets here.

On Saturday afternoon at 4:00 there will be a free, family oriented “Music in Motion” concert, co-sponsored by the Brooklyn Bridge Park Conservancy. Doors open at 3:45; first come, first seated.

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Grace Chorale Presents “Messiahs False and True” at Plymouth Church May 5 and 6 Mon, 16 Apr 2018 00:28:59 +0000

On Saturday, May 5 at 7:00 PM and Sunday, May 6 at 3:00 PM, at Plymouth Church, Orange Street between Hicks and Henry, Grace Chorale of Brooklyn will present “Messiahs False and True,” a concert featuring “[t]hree works exploring the allure of charismatic leaders in times of crisis.” The three works are: “Cry Out and Shout,” bu Knut Nystedt; “Messiahs False and True,” by Rex Isenberg; and “Rejoice in the Lamb,” by Benjamin Britten. Britten was one of the residents of February House, on Middagh Street, in the late 1940s.

There’s more information here. You may buy tickets for the Saturday concert here and for the Sunday concert here.

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Poplar Street Community Garden Workday Saturday Thu, 12 Apr 2018 11:03:23 +0000

Our friends at Poplar Street Community Garden have sent us this message:

We will indeed have another workday in the Poplar St. Community Garden this coming Saturday 4-14 (noon to 3pm). With the compost now turned and going onto plots and other growing areas, we’ll next give the roses their spring pruning, check the fruiting shrubs and trees, spread wood chips on some paths, and more – all while enjoying the Garden’s new life and each other!

Join us! Stroll the Garden, delight in the emerging greenery and colorful blooms, talk gardening talk with us, lend a hand if you wish!

Would you like to become a member? We welcome people who like to garden! Member-gardeners work together to care for the whole of the Garden, from the trees on down to the soil life, each engaging with whatever features are of personal interest. Previous gardening experience and skills are not required, tho’ certainly most appreciated. We learn from each other and from the Garden itself.

A personal plot, if available, is one of the benefits of membership, and two are available at this moment, first come first serve. Members without plots are accommodated in other ways, such as in our communal plots, tho’ some are content just to care for other aspects of the Garden.

In the Garden, we grow native plants and traditional garden favorites, fruiting trees and shrubs, cooking and medicinal herbs, and perennial as well as annual vegetables – all in the good company of many kinds of pollinating insects and birds. The Garden has a beehive, nice benches, stepping stone and earthen paths, charm, beauty, magic, joy!

During the growing season, we welcome visitors on Saturdays and Sundays from noon to 3pm, Tuesday and Thursday evening from 6pm to 8pm, and any other time one of us is there to open the gate. We hold dedicated workdays, trainings, and a gardening party too.

See our Facebook page – but better yet, come to the Garden – this Saturday!

The Poplar St. Community Garden lives at the northwest corner of Hicks and Poplar Streets, at the north end of Brooklyn Heights where Hicks Street bumps into the BQE off-ramp. Enter on Poplar Street.

See you in the Garden!

The weather people say Saturday will be a gorgeous day. What better than to visit a garden and, if you wish, help the gardeners?

Photo: Karl Junkersfeld

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Bargemusic this Weekend Thu, 12 Apr 2018 03:48:58 +0000

Bargemusic begins the weekend Friday evening, April 13 at 8:00 with a concert that melds baroque music with jazz instruments — something I’ve long thought appropriate — as Daniel Schnyder on saxophone, David Taylor on bass trombone, and Mark Peskanov on violin, perform works by Mr. Schnyder and by G.F. Handel (image; by Balthasar Denner (1685–1749)).

Works for dual or four-handed piano by Mozart, Corigliano, Hindemith, and Bizet are the focus of the concert on Saturday evening, April 14 at 6:00, featuring pianists Steven Beck and Yalin Chi.

On Sunday afternoon, April 15 at 4:00, we transition into the truly modern with works by Gerald Finzi, Copland, Rozsa, and Weber, performed by Alexander Fiterstein on clarinet and Lior Willinger on piano. There are details for each concert and you may buy tickets here.

On Saturday afternoon at 4:00 there will be a free, family oriented “Music in Motion” concert, co-sponsored by the Brooklyn Bridge Park Conservancy. Doors open at 3:45; first come, first seated.

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Mr. Video III’s Raf Perez in the Sunday Times Mon, 09 Apr 2018 01:09:20 +0000

The legacy of Raf Perez and Mr. Video III lives on. Raf was profiled here at BHB in 2016. In this Sunday’s New York Times, Fabrice Robinet, a Mr. Video III customer who spent “many an hour” there, writes about the phasing out of DVD’s and the loss of bonus features and director’s commentaries that come with them. Of course, Robinet interviewed Raf for the piece. Read Raf’s comments and see fun photos of his collection of more than 1,000 DVD’s here.

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Bargemusic this Weekend Thu, 05 Apr 2018 02:22:44 +0000

This weekend Bargemusic marks the 100th anniversary of the death of the French composer Claude Debussy (image) with two concerts. The first, on Friday evening, April 6 at 8:00, features pianists Steven Beck and Yalin Chi performing works by Rameau, Debussy, Chopin, and Dukas. For the second, on Saturday evening, April 7 at 6:00, Mr. Beck returns, solo, to play works by Schumann, Debussy, and Franck.

On Sunday afternoon, April 8, soprano Jane Leibel, accompanied by violinist Mark Peskanov and pianist Maureen Volk, will perform works by Mozart, Schubert, and Mendelssohn. There are details for each concert and you may buy tickets here.

On Saturday afternoon at 4:00 there will be a free, family oriented “Music in Motion” concert, co-sponsored by the Brooklyn Bridge Park Conservancy. Doors open at 3:45; first come, first seated.

Debussy image by by Donald Sheridan, via Wikimedia Commons.

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