This week in New York William Hurt converses at 92Y, Steve Beck performs the Goldberg Variations, Janeane Garofalo and Todd Barry in Comedy Below Canal, Christmas Eve klezmer party, Charlie Chaplin films are screened at the Walter Reade, Roger Ballen and Mike Kelley exhibit at the Gagosian Gallery, and a Mel Brooks double feature is shown with all-you-can-eat Chinese food.
MONDAY 12/21: The Modernist Book Group discusses Samuel Beckett’s Murphy, a man whose sole desire is to desire nothing. Community Book Store. 143 Seventh Ave., Brooklyn.
Guggenheim Holiday Concert: George Steel conducts the Vox Vocal Ensemble and the Graham Ashton Brass ensemble in this holiday tradition in the Frank Lloyd Wright rotunda. Guggenheim Museum. 1071 Fifth Ave. (89th St.). Free. 6:00pm.
Amateur Ping-Pong Competition. The Bell House hosts a ping-pong tournament and ask only that you not be “some crazy pro or way too serious about it.” First place gets cash prize. 149 7th St. $5. 7:00pm.
Charlie for the Holidays: Beginning Monday, for three days the Film Society of Lincoln Center will present two Charlie Chaplin classics–City Lights and Modern Times–alternately throughout the day. $11 for single tickets, $15 for Double Feature Pass. Walter Reade Theater. 165 W. 65th St. Upper Level (bet. Broadway and Amsterdam).
Some impressive exhibits at the Gagosian Gallery are closing this week, 12/23, so catch them while you can. On the upper east side, Cy Twombly’s sculpture’s and Roger Ballen’s photographs. Ballen’s “Boarding House” collects black and white images of a three-story warehouse hidden among the gold mines of Johannesburg and inhabited by disenfranchised, impoverished families, fugitives and witch doctors. Gagsosian Gallery. 980 Madison Ave.
TUESDAY 12/22: Reel Pieces with Actor William Hurt. William Hurt will be in conversation after a screening of The Yellow Handkerchief (Director Udayan Prasad, 2009). 92Y. Lexington Ave. @ 92nd St. $40.00. 7:15pm.
Joao Erbetta. This Brazilian guitar player and composer mixes Twang with Frevo, Country with Latin and Jazz with Ciranda”Tico-tico no Fuba”, a classic Brazilian tune immortalized by Hollywood’s Carmen Miranda in the 40’s. Barbès. 376 9th Street. $10. 7:00pm.
WEDNESDAY 12/23: A Town Called Panic. In this Belgian film (the only stop-motion animated feature to have been shown in the official selection of the Cannes Film Festival) Horse, Cowboy and Indian have a strange and wonderful ménage à trois. Animating generic plastic toys, these Belgian directors fashion an absurdist world that has plenty of room for friendship and love, birthday presents, online shopping, music lessons, and home improvements. Film Forum. 209 W. Houston. 6,8, and 10pm.
The Goldberg Variations. Maybe you’ve just read The Loser. Maybe you’re a Bach fan, or a Glenn Gould fan. Or maybe you’re a fan of pianist Steve Beck, graduate of the Juilliard School who has performed at Alice Tully Hall, Merkin Hall and Miller Theater. Steve Beck will perform Bach’s Goldberg Variations in the floating chamber-music series, with complementary glass of eggnog and cookies. Bargemusic. Fulton Ferry Landing, Brooklyn.
A Purely Coincidental night of Klezmer, Part II. This Christmas Eve Barbès hosts the second annual Klezmer party showcasing local groups such as Karen Waltuch (viola), Reuben Radding (bass), Ben Holmes (trumpet), and Uri Sharlin (accordion). Barbès. 376 9th Street. $10. 8:00pm and 10:00pm.
FRIDAY 12/25: Chinese and a Movie: A Mel Brooks Double Feature. Enjoy an all-you-can-eat buffet of Chinese food and two Mel Brooks favorites, Blazing Saddles and Spaceballs. Doors at 2:00pm. Blazing Saddles (2:30pm) and Spaceballs (4:00pm). Food until it’s gone. $25 in advance. $30 at the door. 92Y Tribeca.
SATURDAY 12/26: Satyajit Ray’s classic film Pather Panjali screens at the “Back by Popular Demand” week at the Film Society of Lincoln Center. With their father, a Brahmin priest, often traveling and mother occupied by an elderly relative, Durga and Apu share a series of engaging adventures in a remote Bengali village. Yet, even in this idyllic world, tragedy threatens. The brilliant soundtrack is by Ravi Shankar. Walter Reade Theater. 5:40pm.
SUNDAY 12/27: The Hurt Locker, winner of the New York Critics Circle Best Picture 2009, screens at the “Back by Popular Demand” week at the Film Society of Lincoln Center. Walter Reade Theater. 7:45 pm.
Original Notable New York Illustration © André da Loba
Other images in order of appearance: photograph from Roger Ballen’s show “Boarding House”; film still from A Town Called Panic; untitled painting by Mike Kelley.
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