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To Do: January 10–January 24, 2018

Twenty-five things to see, hear, watch, and read.

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Pop
1. See Cracker & Camper Van Beethoven
Double dose. 
Texan singer-songwriter David Lowery is one of rock’s most underrated jugglers: His ’80s band Camper Van Beethoven recorded scrappy, wry gems like “The Day That Lassie Went to the Moon” and “Take the Skinheads Bowling,” and his ’90s flagship Cracker served considerably beefier fare, like the grunge-era standard “Low.” Dig the versatility as Lowery brings both acts out for the same Highline Ballroom night. —Craig Jenkins
Highline Ballroom, January 14.

Art
2. See Genesis P-Orridge: Tree of Life
Vision of a post-Fluxus world.
By some measures, the artist Genesis P-Orridge is a living legend, branded in 1976 by a member of the British Parliament as a “wrecker of civilization.” Here we see works newly come to light from he/r early days: snippets, collages, original mail art done on envelopes and posted, musical allusions, and more. Until a major museum undertakes a survey of this pivotal figure, make it your business to imbibe this artist. —Jerry Saltz
Invisible-Exports, 89 Eldridge Street, through February 4.

Classical
3. Hear Roomful of Teeth
Very vocal. 
When Caroline Shaw’s Partita for 8 Voices won the Pulitzer Prize in 2013, the piece also drew attention to the orchestralike a cappella ensemble she sings in and wrote it for. Now that group, Roomful of Teeth, performs that work and also joins up with jazz pianist and composer Tigran Hamasyan for the local premiere of his Ser Aravote and of Ambrose Akinmusire’s A Promise in the Stillness. —Justin Davidson
Zankel Hall, January 11.

TV
4. Watch Modern Family’s 200th Episode
A major milestone. 
This series has won so many Emmys that at a certain point it became a pro-wrestling-level bad guy in the awards world, but the continuing adventures of the Pritchett-Dunphy-Tucker clan have proved a remarkably consistent source of entertainment over the years. Phil (Ty Burrell) suffers stomach pains and gets rushed to the hospital by Gloria (Sofía Vergara) in this one, but as always, it’s the shtick and the feels that really matter.   —Matt Zoller Seitz
ABC, January 10.

Theater
5. See Ballyturk
New work from a creepy, Beckettian bard.   
The Irish playwright Enda Walsh is becoming something of a writer-in-residence at St. Ann’s Warehouse, where his plays The Walworth Farce, The New Electric Ballroom, Penelope, Misterman, and Arlington have found their American home over the past ten years. His latest offering finds two men trapped in a strange room with their lives unraveling. Walsh specializes in dramatizing the agony of waiting, of derelict spaces where nothing is happening … yet. —Sara Holdren
St. Ann’s Warehouse, through January 28.

Movies
6. Go to ’60s Verité
For the times they are a-changin’. 
This 64-film series showcases the on-the-fly documentary style that flowered at roughly the same time as flower power while showing seminal bits of life a half-century ago. Along with musical numbers (Monterey Pop, Gimme Shelter), you should check out the electric Jane Fonda portrait Jane and a James Baldwin double bill, Take This Hammer and (in conversation with Dick Gregory) Baldwin’s N*****. —David Edelstein
Film Forum, January 19 to February 6.

Jazz
7. Hear Benny Goodman: King of Swing
That Carnegie Hall night, 80 years on. 
This concert pays tribute to a landmark in jazz history: Benny Goodman’s 1938 Carnegie Hall concert, arguably the night jazz made its debut in the serious-music mainstream. Clarinetist Victor Goines will step into Goodman’s role for the night to lead tunes from the original show by the likes of Gershwin, Fats Waller, and Louis Prima. 
Jazz at Lincoln Center, January 11 to 13.

Books
8. Read Modern Loss
Taking on the ultimate taboo. 
Gabrielle Birkner and Rebecca Soffer both lost parents as young adults, and the pair co-founded the website Modern Loss to create a dialogue around grief and resilience. Now they’re releasing this book of essays collecting insights on topics like social media, triggers, and sex, with contributions from CNN’s Brian Stelter and singer Amanda Palmer. 
Harper Wave, January 23.

Theater
9. See He Brought Her Heart Back in a Box
The grande dame returns.
The great Adrienne Kennedy, playwright of the groundbreaking Funnyhouse of a Negro, is premiering her first new play in a decade at 86 years old — and the moment couldn’t be riper. Directed by Evan Yionoulis, this heart-wrenching memory play is set in both Georgia and New York in 1941, and it’s a story of segregation, desire, and doomed love that touches on everything from the horrors of Jim Crow to the poetry of Christopher Marlowe.     —S.H.
Theatre for a New Audience, January 18 to February 11.

Art
10. See Gordon Matta-Clark: Anarchitect
Breakdown to breakthrough. 
The late downtown hero Gordon Matta-Clark, known for carving up Paris buildings, shines forth in this show documenting his many projects in the then–world capital of 1970s Western decay: the Bronx. Working directly with communities, Matta-Clark brought great art to the people via sculpture, film, drawings, prints, etc. —J.S.
Bronx Museum, through April 8.

Classical Music
11. Hear Susanna Mälkki With the Philharmonic
What might have been. 
Susanna Mälkki’s 2015 debut with the New York Philharmonic left some audience members wishing the orchestra could immediately appoint her music director, especially since the Los Angeles Philharmonic soon named her principal guest conductor. The consolation prize is a sole engagement this season, leading a program of Debussy and Tchaikovsky, sandwiching “Helix” by her fellow Finn Esa-Pekka Salonen. —J.D.
Geffen Hall, January 11 to 13.

Pop
12. Listen to Mania
Pushing boundaries. 
The pop-punk vets in Fall Out Boy continue their slow push into straight-up pop and electronic music with this January’s release. Electro-rock flights are aided this time around by co-writes from chart-topper Sia and co-production from scribes like the sometime Weeknd collaborator Illangelo. —C.J.
Island Records/DCD2, January 19.

Talks
13. Go to 50 Years After MLK: A Dream Deferred
Taking stock. 
Brian Lehrer and Jami Floyd from WNYC will moderate this panel discussion on what has and hasn’t changed since Martin Luther King’s death half a century ago. Guests will include Women’s March co-founder Linda Sarsour and Black Lives Matter co-founder Patrisse Cullors.
Apollo Theater, January 14.

Books
14. Read Everything Here Is Beautiful
Deploying empathy.
Like Adam Haslett’s Imagine Me Gone, Mira T. Lee’s debut looks at a mental-illness sufferer — in this case, New York City journalist Lucia, diagnosed with “schizoaffective disorder” — through her own eyes as well as those of narrators closest to her, including older sister Miranda and Ecuador-born partner Manuel. —Boris Kachka
Pamela Dorman Books/Viking, January 16.

TV
15. Watch This Time Next Year
Resolution road.
Based on the same-titled U.K. series and perfectly timed to the start of a New Year, this Lifetime series follows individuals as they embark on sustained campaigns to change some aspect of themselves, whether through weight loss, reconstructive surgery, infertility treatment, or reuniting with an estranged loved one. —M.Z.S.
Lifetime, January 16.

Movies
16. See The Oscar Contenders (Ladies Taking Names Edition)
Women on the verge.
Ahead of the Oscar blitz, check out the year’s buzziest leading-actress performances, among them: Saoirse Ronan as a prickly-dreamy teen in Lady Bird; Frances McDormand and Diane Kruger as grief-stricken mothers in, respectively, Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri and In the Fade; Margot Robbie as a militantly trashy Tonya Harding in I, Tonya; and Annette Bening as the dying Gloria Grahame in Film Stars Don’t Die in Liverpool. —D.E.
In theaters now.

Opera
17. See Fellow Travelers
Of this moment. 
Gregory Spears and Greg Pierce’s urgent opera about the danger of being a gay government employee in the McCarthy era opened in Cincinnati in 2016 days after the attack on a gay nightclub in Orlando and makes its New York debut at a time when the topics of sexual politics and the purging of federal agencies have shape-shifted into a new kind of timeliness. —J.D.
Gerald W. Lynch Theater, January 12 through 14.

Art
18. See Gordon Parks: I Am You, Part 1
New views from a late visionary.
The first installment of two, this show devoted to the great photographer of the civil-rights movement focuses on lesser-known work from the ’50s and ’60s, like portraits of artists including Calder and Giacometti and vérité fashion photography that paved the way for today’s street-style portraiture.
Jack Shainman Gallery, 524 West 24th Street. Opens January 11.

Pop Music
19. Listen to Camila
Breaking out.
Cuban-American singer Camila Cabello, Fifth Harmony’s one that got away, steps into a promising solo career with her self-titled debut, which soars to winsome heights on the yearning “Never Be the Same” and “Real Friends” and zipped up pop charts worldwide with the salsa-infused “Havana.” —C.J.
Epic Records/Syco Entertainment, January 12.

Theater
20. See Cute Activist
Satire in the Nutmeg State.
The young theater company New Saloon garnered great praise for Minor Character, an exploded/imploded riff on Chekhov’s Uncle Vanya. Now it’s back with a new play by Milo Cramer set in a mythical Connecticut town where a hip young army of “part-time activists” wages war with an evil landlord in a wry fable about the place of activism in our anxious contemporary lives. —S.H.
The Bushwick Starr, January 10 through 27.

Books
21. Read Red Clocks
Close to home.
In Leni Zumas’s mysterious new novel, five women in small-town Oregon push the boundaries in a world where abortion is illegal, IVF is outlawed, and incredible rights are granted to embryos. Sound familiar?              
Little, Brown and Company, January 16.

Classical
22. Hear the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra
Abundance of riches.
Wagnerians have a heady few months coming up: Next month, the Met stages Parsifal; in mid-February, the New York Philharmonic performs Act I of Die Walküre in concert; and in April, the Boston Symphony Orchestra performs Act II of Tristan und Isolde. This undeclared festival gets going with a Parsifal preview: two excerpts conducted by Daniele Gatti as an intro to Bruckner’s Symphony No. 9. —J.D.
Carnegie Hall, January 17.

Movies
23. See The Way I See It: Directors’ Cuts
Original vision.
This series celebrates the revenge of the auteur on studio executives and other non-auteurs. The usual suspects like Blade Runner, Brazil, and Once Upon a Time in America are here, but the goodie is Kenneth Lonergan’s three-plus-hour cut of Margaret (starring Anna Paquin as a high-strung teenager), which turns a messy failure into a messy masterpiece. (Lonergan will confirm as much in a Q&A.) —D.E.
Quad Cinema, through January 18.

Theater
24. Go to the Under the Radar Festival
Binge-watch them all. 
The Public’s annual festival of innovative, off-the-beaten-track theater is back and, as always, is worth multiple visits to Astor Place during January. From a Hamlet-themed extravaganza by the drag performer and “lip-sync maestro” Dickie Beau to an exploration of the Wild West by the Obie Award–winning Nature Theater of Oklahoma to reworkings of classics like Antigone and the Chinese dramatic masterpiece Thunderstorm, the eclectic, exciting offerings of Under the Radar should be on yours. —S.H.
The Public Theater, through January 15.

Movies
25. Watch The Truman Show
Never felt fresher.
Peter Weir’s 1998 satire about an average guy (Jim Carrey, at his best) who’s the unknowing star of a reality show anticipated the way our media-rich environments and ubiquitous cameras would turn us all into walking, talking Trumans.
Netflix. 


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