New York

I have found my new favourite hotel for future New York visits. Unlike my regular brief visits to New York as a theatre, food and wine writer (NY Spring 2014), this New York visit had a special purpose. My grand-daughter is part of a youth choir which has the exciting opportunity to perform in a program at Carnegie Hall and I decided to join my family in Manhattan for a full week of exploring New York from the perspective of family tourism.

What better way is there for a newbie ballroom dance addict to spend the Labor Day Weekend than dancing the nights away in the largest ballroom afloat with Dancers at Sea? As the smiling faces in the picture taken on the Black and White Formal night photograph attest to, there were many great minds that thought alike on this question.

New York is one of my favorite cities – it has a unique buzz, an electric feel, that is unlike anywhere else I have visited. Each time I visit New York I feel like a humming bird, hovering just above the surface of culture and cuisine, dipping down for a taste, but never able to perch long enough to experience more than that brief and tantalizing taste.

New York, NY.  To round off this week I couldn't find anything of interest through TKTS so I got tickets to two musicals and also visited the Vollard Exhibition at the Met. Since I have to figure out how to fit far too many new books into my over expanded suitcase before tomorrow morning, a quick impression follows  -  no pun intended - really.

New York, NY: It seems that in New York, as in Vancouver, standing ovations have become so common place that they have lost their significance. I have frequently observed, in perplexed amusement, audience members leaping to their feet after quite unexceptional shows.

New York, NY: So back I went this evening to the 13th Street Repertory Theatre for the performance of these four pieces. The Municipal Abattoir  and  The Palooka preceded a brief intermission and These are the Stairs You Gotta Watch and Mr. Paradise  concluded the evening. Blues guitarist,  Casey Spindler, provided the continuity that linked these four disparate pieces.

New York, NY: I always find the audience demographics an interesting pointer to the nature of a play. A few weeks ago I was at the opening night of "Take Me Out" at the Waterfront Theatre in Vancouver. The male to female ratio was probably around 8 to 1, certainly not the usual preponderance of women and older couples. This afternoon in the 88 seat black box Lion Theatre, one of six theatres in an interesting complex on 42nd Street, men outnumbered women in the audience at about the same rate.

New York, NY:   Ah, New York city. In Elizabeth Barrett Browning's words  "How I do love thee, let me count the ways."   It's not just the never ending sense of life and energy that pulsates in the air night and day; nor the plethora of restaurants  around every corner, nor the  fact that there are so many theatrical events on right now that I can't even sample more than a tiny fraction. It is  just the most exciting city in the world and every time I come here I wish I could stay here for longer than a week or two.  Anyway this time I thought I might combine my theatre impressions with  restaurant reviews when appropriate. Sort of like dinner  and a show.