Arts Watch: Nuyorican Poets Cafe Benefit This Thursday

The Nuyorican Poets Cafe will hold a benefit to raise money to replace its heating system, which was destroyed during Hurricane Sandy, on Thursday, Dec. 20th at Joe’s Pub.

What began as a living room Salon dedicated to bringing new work into the public eye forty years ago in the East Village apartment of writer and poet Miguel Algarin, is now one of the country’s most highly respected arts organizations.  The Nuyorican Poets Cafe (236 E. 3rd St.) is an acclaimed forum for innovative poetry, live music, hip hop, video, visual arts, comedy and theatre.

Over the years, the Nuyorican has presented groundbreaking works by a diverse community of artists from countless backgrounds and locations. Best known for originating and hosting the first ever New York City Poetry Slam in 1989the cafe helped to establish a new generation of spoken word artists who have become a mainstay in today’s pop-culture landscape. Its many publications, such as ALOUD: Voices from the Nuyorican Poets Café, have added to its universal recognition.

Sarah Jones Brings Workshop Performances to Nuyorican

Run, don’t walk – to the Nuyorican Poets Cafe and catch the uber-talented Sarah Jones in “New Year, Nuyorican.” Beginning on Jan. 17th, she’ll present fourteen workshop performances at the intimate space where she got her start. Her one-woman show, Bridge & Tunnel was a smash hit that went all the way to Broadway and garnered her a special TONY award.

Ntozake Shange at the Nuyorican

There’s a special event at the Nuyorican Poet’s Cafe tonight: an appearance by the groundbreaking playwright and poet Ntozake Shange.  Earlier this fall, she released a new novel, Some Sing, Some Cry,” a 600 page family saga written with her sister, Ifa Bayeza.  Also, the film adaptation of Shange’s signature work, “For Colored Girls,” is now out in theaters.  Tonight’s reading is part of the Nuyorican’s Poetic Heritage Festival.  She will be featured on Wednesday, Nov. 10th, as well.  More details, including ticket info,  available on their web site.

The Moth StorySLAM at Nuyorican Tonight

Infamous story-telling “hub,” The Moth, is back at the Nuyorican Poets Cafe this evening with their monthly StorySLAM.  This month’s rather broad theme is “Science.” Story-tellers are selected out of a hat (go early to put your name in) and each gets five minutes to wow the judges (and audience) with their own story – no readings or cheat sheets allowed.

$8 // 7pm // 236 East 3rd Street Between Ave B & C.

Weekend Guide

What’s on our calendar for the weekend?  Well, we have our (previously noted) Weekend Music Picks, shows from Joey Arias and Kate Clinton, a festival of Art in Odd Places and — a few other items of note:

  • This week’s Midnight Movie at the Sunshine is Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas, Terry Gilliam’s fantasmagoric odyssey based on Hunter S. Thompson‘s book of the same name.  The film is an underrated tribute to the late “gonzo” journalist and features two thrilling and quite brilliant performances from Johnny Depp and Benicio Del Toro. $9.99 // Fri. and Sat. at midnight // 143 E. Houston.
  • The Nuyorican Poets Cafe‘s Poetic Heritage Festival continues with SLAM REVIVAL on Friday Oct. 1st at 7pm,  starring past & present Nuyorican Slam Team members  Jared Singer, Caroline Rothestein, Ken Arkind, & Carlos Andres Gomez.  This Saturday through Monday, the cafe will present a staged reading of SHANGO DE IMA by Pepe Carril and adapted by Susan Sherman.  The readings will be directed by award-winning director Rome Neal with the Orisha music performed by Grammy-nominated Wilson “Chembo” Corniel. Also starring Audelco Award-winning actor Lloyd Goodman.  $10 // 7pm // 236 East 3rd Street.
  • The New Amsterdam Market is back down at South Street & Peck Slip on Sunday from 11a – 4p with a slew of local vendors and purveyors offering L.E.S.  favorites like Saxelby Cheesmongers to Rick’s Picks to Luke’s Lobster.

The Moth’s StorySLAM is Back at the Nuyorican

The Moth‘s storySLAM series is back at Nuyorican Poets Cafe tonight. This month’s theme – “Narrow Escapes.” They limit stories to five minutes, and ten stories are heard. The stories are scored by three teams of audience-member judges, and a winner is announced at every SLAM. $7 tickets at the door // 7:00 Doors, 7:30 Stories Begin // 236 E. 3rd St. (Avenues B and C)

The Nuyorican Heads Uptown to SummerStage

SummerStage is celebrating it’s 25th anniversary and City Parks Foundation is dedicating the season to “several artistic movements that were developed in New York City neighborhoods and to key artists who created – or were inspired by – those artistic developments.” SO, the Nuyorican Poets Cafe will head uptown tomorrow night for what looks to be a fabulous show in Central Park. 

Elaine Del Valle Continues Hot Streak at Nuyorican

Elaine Del Valle

Actress Elaine Del Valle is performing her award winning one-woman show, Brownsville Bred: Growing up Elaine, tonight at the Nuyorican Poets Cafe at 7:30 pm. The show, “an autobiographical account of a Latina’s coming of age in 1980’s Brownsville Brooklyn, NY projects,” has won all kinds of festivals and is keeping her on the run with performances on both coasts. Brownsville Bred is running the second Wednesday of every month at the Nuyorican (236 East 3rd Street, Between Aves. B & C) $15.