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Virtual Performance Picks: New Music and Create-Your-Own Cult


Max Vernon (image courtesy of Everyman Agency)

New Songs Now In Your Living Room
Thursday, May 7 at Rattlestick on YouTube, 8 pm: FREE

These days, everything happens in your living room. Or your kitchen, or your bedroom, or maybe your balcony, if you’re lucky enough to have something like that. On Thursdays, you can welcome the dulcet tones of new music to your living room, thanks to Rattlestick’s new virtual series. They’re spotlighting local songwriters and theater composers, who will be performing new material and discussing their artistic processes, so you can see the sausage and how it’s made. Yes, that’s an unsettling metaphor, but so be it. This week, composers Max Vernon and Rona Siddiqui get their turn in the virtual spotlight. 

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Welcome to the Age of the Online Street Fair

With warm weather rescuing the city from the claws of winter, you might be tempted to stroll through a weekend street market. But this year, due to the coronavirus pandemic, the Hester Street Fair won’t be filling Seward Park with food vendors, jewelers, artisans, designers, and indie entrepreneurs as usual. Instead, the beloved weekend fair is going virtual, and pitching its tents on the internet. More →

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Restaurants Have Pivoted to Feeding the Frontlines: Is It Delivering?

Harlem Hospital workers get a delivery from Eat Gai Zen. (Photos courtesy of Feed Your Hospital)

When New York’s restaurants were forced to close their dining rooms on March 16, many decided to keep their lights on by switching to a charity model. Over the last six weeks, dozens of restaurants have launched fundraising campaigns with the mission of feeding frontline workers while keeping their employees on payroll. The headlines are heartwarming, but how are these endeavors actually working out? More →

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Improvised Tarot, A Theatrical Saga on Zoom, and More Virtual Performance Picks


The cast of the 2013 production of Regular Singing, written and directed by Richard Nelson, the final play of The Apple Family Plays at The Public Theater. Photo credit: Joan Marcus.

What Do We Need To Talk About?
Wednesday, April 29 at The Public Theater on YouTube, 7:30 pm: FREE

We’re used to movies having sequels for years on end, but when it comes to live performance, this practice is much rarer. It’s far from nonexistent, though—just ask Richard Nelson. The playwright’s epic Apple Family saga (formally known as the Rhinebeck Panorama) has stretched for a literal decade, and has always been performed at The Public Theater. Obviously things are different now, but the story continues nonetheless. Nelson wrote this latest play very recently while quarantined in Rhinebeck, and of course, it takes place over Zoom instead of over the dinner table. And if you’re new to this tale, Nelson’s previous Rhinebeck plays are available to stream for free, so you can get all caught up.

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In NYC, Lining Up For an Antibody Test Is the New Waiting For a Table

A CityMD waiting room on April 28.
(Credit: Rusty Zimmerman)

Shortly after noon yesterday, Rusty Zimmerman, a 40-year-old artist living in Crown Heights, went to a CityMD on Fulton Street in Bedford-Stuyvesant. After he arrived, fellow patients started spilling into the waiting room and social distancing became less and less possible, he said. A CityMD staff member told him that the care center was short-handed. He waited for almost two hours before receiving a blood draw. More →

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Caught Between Two Homelands During the Coronavirus Lockdown

(Photo: Tianpei Xiao)

When New York had its first confirmed coronavirus case on March 1, I sensed a hint of unease among my Chinese friends. When universities moved classes online one after another, discussions of flying back to China started appearing in WeChat groups. I was quickly added to two group chats where people from both China and the US shared daily flight information. On a family video chat, I mentioned it to my mom. By that time, she had stayed home in Jinan, my home city in eastern China, for over two months. More →