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Get Out and Do This: Swing Dance, New Year's Eve Events and More

By Heidi Patalano | December 30, 2013 9:13am
 There's so much happening this week around town this holiday week. Miss out at your own peril.
Get Out and Do This: New Year's Eve and More
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Monday, Dec. 30
Get warmed up for your New Year’s fetes with the weekly swing night at Harlem’s historic Cotton Club, which was once host to jazz legends such as Ella Fitzgerald, Lena Horne and Duke Ellington. For a $25 cover, from 8 p.m. to after midnight, you can dance to the music of a live 13-piece jazz and swing band and enjoy dinner from an a la carte menu.

If Celtic dancing is more your style, try Theatre 80 in the East Village where a “seisun” (Irish Gaelic for a gathering of musicians to play Irish folk music) will include instruction on traditional Irish dance at 8 p.m. for a $10 fee. 

Tuesday, Dec. 31
If you’ve gotten to New Year’s Eve day and you haven’t made any plans, chances are either you’re overwhelmed by the possibilities or would prefer to spend it on the couch at home. For the former category, we offer a few from the staggering list of possibilities:

Jam band Phish will cap a four-day run at Madison Square Garden with a New Year’s Eve show. Tickets are $75 plus fees.

DUMBO’s Galapagos Art Space will throw a 1920s Paris-themed party. Expect to see aerial artists, burlesque and can-can dancers and many singers crooning 1920s-era tunes. Seated tickets are priced at $125 and up. Open bar runs until 1 a.m.

New Agers want to celebrate the New Year too. Out in East Williamsburg, yoga center Body Actualized will throw a party with grooves provided by DJ Deep Trouble. For $45, enjoy a three-course dinner with vegan options, provided by Intuitive Catering.

While revelers in Times Square sway to the tunes of Miley Cyrus, get your retro cool on at the Subway Soul Club’s special New Year’s Eve Northern Soul dance party at Coco 66 in Greenpoint. For $20 at the door, dance from 8 p.m. for 4 a.m. and enjoy a champagne toast at midnight.

Wednesday, Jan. 1
After all that partying, some introspection on 2014 may be in order. Starting from 2 p.m., The Poetry Project will hold its 40th annual New Year’s Day Poetry Marathon in the East Village. For a $20 entry fee, enjoy a barrage of talented writers who will read their works live, and enter a raffle for special goodies including tote bags designed by Parsons students. 

Thursday, Jan. 2
If one of the resolutions on your list this year is to get your business ideas off the ground, Brooklyn Public Library can help. At the Grand Army Plaza location, you can set up a one-on-one appointment with a SCORE counselor who can offer advice on how to start your business and write up a plan. Call 718-623-7000 and select option "3" to make an appointment.

Expect some excellent pop culture snark at the Creek and Cave in Long Island City tonight. Half of the ultra-popular pop culture podcast duo “The Read,” Kid Fury will be there along with Mike Cannon, Brandon Collins and Mike Brown to put on “Pop Americano” — an interactive show where comedians discuss the latest entertainment and political news.

The American Museum of Natural History will offer a special event at the Hayden Planetarium at 6:30 p.m. Presenter Ted Williams will illuminate the shifting position of the celestial north pole.

Friday, Jan 3
Guess who: A beloved actor known for both performing Farrelly Brothers slapstick and delivering Aaron Sorkin dialogue has — surprise — a singer-songwriting career on the side. It’s Jeff Daniels! He’ll perform his own songs, like “If William Shatner Can, I Can Too” and “You Can Drink An Ugly Girl Pretty” at supper club 54 Below in Midtown on Jan. 2, 3 and 4.

Saturday, Jan. 4
It’s around this time of year that many of us are reminded of the plot of the Nutcracker. Fitting, then, that Ellen Stewart Theatre in the East Village would now offer “The Shell-Shocked Nut – An Alternative Adaptation of The Nutcracker.” With 25 performers aged 4 through 19 and 25 professional dancers, the play shifts its focus to post-traumatic stress, making the two main characters into a war veteran and an elementary school student. 

Fans of composer Stephen Sondheim will be lining up for “Something Stephen Said” at Joe’s Pub in the East Village. The Public Theater’s new company Three Act Theatre will perform notable songs written by Sondheim, Stephen Schwartz and Stephen Flaherty.

Sunday, Jan. 5
Who would’ve thought that the 1995 romantic drama “The Bridges of Madison County” could make for a great Broadway musical? Tony Award-winners director Bartlett Sher and composer/lyricist Adam Guettel apparently, who along with stars Kelli O’Hara and Steven Pasquale will sit down to chat about the new production at the 92nd Street Y at 7:30 p.m.