Entertainment

To me, the mark of a good musical is one that transports its audience to the time and place of the characters. I have seen a few musicals that have accomplished this task, with The Lion Kingtopping the list. I first saw this long-running show as a traveling production in Cleveland and a few years later on the Great White Way.

Ever wanted to try your hand at indoor bocce ball, sing karaoke on stage or see semi-famous musicians and comedians in a tiny, little basement venue under a bar? Head to Union Hall where you can do all three, maybe even on the same night.

The 20th Original GLBT Expo heads to NYC’s Jacob K. Javits Convention Center this weekend (Sat., March 9th & Sun., March 10th). The two-day event will be chock-full of activities, including an appearance by entertainer Amanda Lepore, Q&A with Project Runway Season 4 contestant and activist Jack Mackenroth, performance by singer Jade Starling and much more.

Last night, I saw the hilarious new musical Hands on a Hardbody, which follows 10 contestants competing to keep their hands on a truck from their local Nissan dealership. Set in Texas, the truck takes center stage literally, but also in each of the characters’ minds as the American Dream.

A few weeks ago, a friend was in town visiting from California and wanted a nice, casual place to have a few drinks with friends. She opted for VU Rooftop Bar in Manhattan’s Koreatown—or K-Town, as locals know it. This intimate space—with no dress code or cover charge—is perched on the 14th floor of LaQuinta Manhattan Hotel and offers great views of the nearby Empire State Building.

The other night, I saw Broadway’s new comedy ANN, the story of former Texas governor Ann Richards. Starring veteran actor of stage and screen Holland Taylor, who also wrote the play, the one-woman show was set up as if Richards were delivering a speech at a college commencement ceremony.

Considering the large space requirements needed for a bowling alley, it’s surprising how many there are in New York. Midtown has a handful, Chelsea Piers has an alley in its spacious sports complex and even Greenpoint, Brooklyn has two bowling facilities, including my favorite: The Gutter.

The best word to describe Brooklyn Heights, the quiet little neighborhood on the east side of the Brooklyn Bridge, would be quaint. It’s the polar opposite of Lower Manhattan’s Financial District across the East River, with tree-lined blocks of brownstones, plenty of parks and the Brooklyn Heights Cinema.

Last night, I had the opportunity to see Rodgers + Hammerstein's CINDERELLA, a new Broadway musical, which is currently in previews at the Broadway Theatre and will officially open on March 3rd. This is the first time this classic story has had a home on the Great White Way—the new version, with a few modern twists for good measure—is based on a 1957 TV movie starring Julie Andrews in the title role.

New York City is a land full of cultural opportunities. Every day, both visitors and locals can witness some of the city’s most talented professional thespians, musicians and dancers take to the stage at an almost never-ending list of world-renowned venues—from Lincoln Center and Carnegie Hall to The Metropolitan Opera House and the Imperial Theatre. This metropolis is also home to a number of up-and-coming, dedicated students—on the cusp of their illustrious careers.

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