What's On in New York

Headed to New York anytime soon? We've rounded up what's hot in the Big Apple.

Christmas is coming early for theater fans in New York this year: Just after the presidential election, the Roundabout Theatre Company will reunite the cast of its 2004 production of Stephen Sondheim and John Weidman's Assassins for a one-night only benefit concert on December 3.  Joe Mantello will direct the staged reading with performances by Marc Kudisch, Neil Patrick Harris, Mario Cantone, Michael Cerveris (who earned a Tony for his portrayal of John Wilkes Booth), Denis O’Hare, and more. (Frequent Sondheim musical director Paul Gemignani will conduct, and his son Alex will appear onstage as John Hinkley.) The show, which won the Tony Award for Best Musical Revival in 2004, studies the uniquely American combination of politics and personal happiness, and the persistent belief that "everybody's got the right to be happy." Tickets can be purchased at Roundabout.com.

Sure, everybody knows about the Cannes and Sundance  and Venice Film Festivals, but true cineastes know that New York State has plenty of film events right here in town…and we won't even count the ones held in New York City.

Here are five worth checking out:

The Woodstock Film Festival was recently praised by actor Ethan Hawke as “among the finest of a dying breed: a festival that isn’t trying to sell you anything, but simply and beautifully celebrating the art & craft of filmmaking.” In addition to movies, Woodstock presents A-list concerts, panels and parties, and creates stimulating and innovative programming year-round. The Woodstock Film Festival will celebrate its 13th Annual Festival October 10‑14, with an extraordinary line-up of "fiercely independent" films, panels, concerts and special events in Woodstock and the neighboring towns of Rhinebeck, Saugerties, Boiceville, Kingston and Rosendale.

Now in its 20th year, ImageOut: The Rochester Lesbian & Gay Film & Video Festival’s 10-day festival features more than 40 programs and 90 films from around the world. ImageOut is Upstate New York’s longest running lesbian and gay film and video festival and will run this year from October 5-14 in Rochester, Finger Lakes. The festival encourages lesbian and gay filmmakers, who, as a group, are rarely seen in mainstream media.

Hosted by The Chatham Film Club and Crandell Theatre, FilmColumbia in Chatham, Hudson Valley offers film buffs an exciting long weekend of film screenings and “meet the filmmaker” events. In their twelve year history, they have screened many films that have gone on to garner industry and critic awards and nominations. From October 17-21, this year’s selections will introduce audiences to a group of new films before they are released to the general public.

From September 14-16, the first-ever Big Eddy Film Festival will premiere in Narrowsburg. Produced by Delaware Valley Arts Alliance, the arts council for Sullivan County, in collaboration with the newly formed Catskill Film Commission, The Big Eddy Film Festival will present feature films, documentaries, and shorts. Themes and subjects of interest are unrestricted, and may include the relationships between humans and their natural environment, the role of the arts in daily life, New York State stories, and unique challenges of contemporary life.

And then there's the Oscar-qualifying Hamptons International Film Festival, which was founded to celebrate Independent film – long, short, fiction and documentary – and to introduce a unique and varied spectrum of international films and filmmakers to their audiences. The festival is committed to exhibiting films that express fresh voices and differing global perspectives. The 20th Annual Hamptons International Film Festival will take place October 4-8.

For more information and a complete list of the state’s film festivals, visit www.iloveny.com.

Heads up, fashionistas! New York's annual Fashion Week is approaching, and everyone—from fans to designers and photographers—is practicing their "fabulous"-es and "fierce"-es in anticipation. The week will kick off with the fourth annual Fashion's Night Out, a Vogue-sponsored event that city website Gothamist notes was born to restore consumer confidence in the retail fashion industry during the worst of the recession. The night will feature extended store hours, celebrity appearances, and musical performances at various retail locations across the city. Narrow your search on the website by neighborhood, category (men's, women's, beauty, etc.), and specialty (celebrities, designer appearances, food) to find the perfect destination. Proceeds from items purchased from the FNO collection will go to the New York City AIDS Fund in the NY Community Trust. In New York, Fashion's Night Out will begin on Thursday, September 6 at 6 p.m. Other events will be held in other cities.

Good news for foodies (and oenophiles!) in New York: Todd English’s Ça Va Brasserie has partnered with some premier wineries for special events at the InterContinental New York Times Square. Launching next month, the restaurant’s new comprehensive wine program will include presentations from vineyards like Flanagan, Antinori, Quintessa, and Flowers. Guests of each event can enjoy the wineries’ top selections alongside menus from Chef de Cuisine Matt Corbett.
 
The series begins with a seated four-course wine dinner hosted by California winery, Flanagan Wines, which are paired with Corbett’s early autumn offerings. Throughout the evening guests will experience hints of orange and chamomile in the 2010 Sonoma Valley Chardonnay, ambrosial flavors of the vineyard’s 2006 Cabernet Sauvignon and the elusive 2009 Flanagan Estate Syrah that has been fermented in the vineyard’s caves for over 20 months.
 
Further into fall, Italian wines by Antinori will be showcased with a reception-style wine tasting. Throughout the evening guests will travel from station to station sampling varietals from the Tuscan vineyards alongside Corbett's seasonal dishes.
 
In November, Ça Va will host a one-of-a-kind wine dinner with two of California’s elite wineries: Flowers Winery and Quintessa Wines. The evening begins with a reception of canapés and sparkling wines before continuing to a multi-course wine dinner with seasonal dishes and selections from the vineyards’ best reserves.
 
For more information and to inquire about ticket availability, contact Faith Johnson at [email protected] or 212-803-4565.
 

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