• December 18, 2014
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Arts Listing

HOLIDAY EVENTSAnnual holiday fesitval, Variety Boys and Girls Club of Queens, 21-12 30 Road, Long Island City, Fri., Dec. 19, 5 p.m. Children will perform holiday songs and dances, games, pictures with Santa & Mrs. Claus and more. Open to the public. Info: (718) 728-0946, vbgcg.org.

The Postal Service’s LIC facility
Posted: December 18, 2014

It is now well known history that Long Island City has lost a lot of its old manufacturing industries. Another big labor-intensive jobs facility that was lost was the Postal Concentration Center on Northern Boulevard and 43rd Street. It was also called the Long Island Terminal by the Post Office.

Before the days of FedEx, the Postal Service was choked every Christmas season with parcels. They would reach to the ceiling on the platform at the PCC. They were collected by trucks and taken to ships or the airport for final dispatch. It says on the back of this photo that the workers handled 100,000 parcels a day. All the work was done by hand. Today, foreign packages no longer travel by ship or surface transport and must go by air to arrive on time.

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Let’s do Christmas at the Armstrong’s this year
Posted: December 18, 2014

The lifestyles of the rich and famous can often feel entirely unrelatable to the average working person. The glamour and grandness of multi-million dollar mansions, private drivers and huge walk-in closets are out of reach for most people, and yet tucked in a row of middle-class Corona homes on 107th Street sits the haven of one of the most famous jazz musicians of all time.

Louis Armstrong’s house is almost impossible to pick out if you’ve never seen it before. Aside from the weathered plaque and visitor’s welcome center — constructed within the musician’s old garage — the house looks like any other on the block during this time of year: A wreath with a red bow hangs on the wooden front door, a Christmas tree glows gently from the living room window and outside, an evergreen is wrapped in twinkling clear lights.

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A Christmas classic brought to the stage
Posted: December 18, 2014

“No man is a failure if he has friends,” is one of the more poignant lines from Frank Capra’s Christmas classic “It’s a Wonderful Life,” and no play is a failure when it perfectly captures the essence of the original with a twist that even fans who watch the movie annually on Christmas Eve can enjoy.

Directed by Greg Cicchino, the managing director of the Variations Theatre Group, the play is set at WVTG Playhouse, a fictitious 1940s radio studio broadcasting the play.

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A polished party serves race on a platter of fun
Posted: December 18, 2014

On the second Tuesday of every month, The Creek and The Cave hosts Justin Peele’s “Party & Bull***t,” a free stand-up show featuring live music, stellar DJs and an after-party. It feels like a hangout, if you hang with polished, professional comedians while munching and sipping with friends and neighbors.

“Everybody’s a comedy fan, everyone likes to laugh at a person saying something cool and funny. And everybody likes music … there’s always a melding of comedy, music and art,” Peele said.

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Thursday 12/11/2014
Arts Listings
Posted: December 11, 2014

THEATER

Comedy Night at Central Queens YM & YWHA, lineup includes Jared Logan, Dennis Rooney, Eric Haft and KC Arora, 67-09 108 St., Forest Hills, Sat., Dec. 13, 8 p.m. $15 CGY members, $20 nonmembers. Complimentary babysitting available. Info/tickets: (718) 268-5011, ext. 151, cgy.org/tickets.

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The man behind the Kodak Christmas tree
Posted: December 11, 2014

On Dec. 21, 1962, Kodak Pavilion field engineer George Kojac scaled the company’s new structure, under construction for the 1964 World’s Fair at Flushing Meadows, to plant a Christmas tree atop it.

Physical feats were nothing new to him.

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Amid Noguchi stones, a bamboo sphere has a pulse
Updated: December 18, 2014 - 12:13 pm

A plump woven bamboo sphere, evoking a bird’s nest or dumpling, sits amid the Noguchi Museum’s collection of stone giants. Upon closer look, there’s a subtle surprise: It moves.

Swelling like an undulating jellyfish or a slowly inhaling lung, “Breathing Sphere” is a creation of Dutch artist and designer Maria Blaisse , presented to Noguchi by the design researchers at slowLab in Amsterdam.

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Ja Rule, Fat Joe to perform in Queens Saturday
Posted: December 11, 2014

Queens native and hip-hop icon Ja Rule doesn’t get too many opportunities to say “Holla Holla” to the borough he grew up in.

“There’s not too many spots in Queens to perform at,” he said.

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Is a chair still a chair without Luther there?
Posted: December 11, 2014

Luther Vandross’ smooth voice is one of the most recognizable in R&B in the world. Starting off as a background vocalist for such superstars as Chaka Khan, Bette Midler, Diana Ross and David Bowie, Vandross went on to become a solo artist who has sold more than 25 million records worldwide and won eight Grammys.

While the singer died tragically in 2005 from a heart attack, singles including “Here and Now,” “A House is Not a Home” and “Never Too Much” allow for Vandross’ legacy to continue.

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Thursday 12/04/2014
Take a walk on the Sunnyside
Posted: December 04, 2014

A vision of Christmas past — looking much like one of Christmas present — is seen in this photograph of the shopping district on Greenpoint Avenue at the corner of 47th Street. Greepoint Avenue starts at Queens Boulevard and extends into Brooklyn over Newtown Creek, continuing all the way down to the East River.

In Queens, much of it runs through Sunnyside, so named to honor Richard Bragaw (1748-1818), whose farm was called Sunnyside Hill. Bragaw was a true American patriot who took up arms during the Revolutionary War while some loyalists, called Tories, fled to Canada.

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Arts Listings
Posted: December 04, 2014

EXHIBITS

The Daghlian Collection of Chinese Art, highlights of the collection of over 1,600 objects spanning 5,000 years, Queens College, Klapper Hall, 65-30 Kissena Blvd., Flushing, thru Jan. 10. Info: daghlian.qc.cuny.edu.

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Stand up and use art to change the world
Updated: December 11, 2014 - 12:21 pm

Across the country this month, there have been numerous protests and demonstrations on a variety of topics.

Whether it’s a group of concerned citizens holdings signs that condemn President Obama’s recent immigration announcement or a group of young activists holding their hands up and blocking the entrance to the Queens Midtown Tunnel, thousands of Americans are exercising their rights.

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Look out Queens, here comes Santa Claus!
Posted: December 04, 2014

Now that millions of Americans have finally come out of their turkey comas, the holiday season has officially started.

While Queens residents decorate their homes with lights and holly, the big man himself will be making appearances all over the borough to listen to the wishes and dreams of children in every neighborhood.

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The ‘Unwavering Truth’ of neurofibromatosis
Updated: December 05, 2014 - 9:45 am

The vast, echoing halls of the Queens Museum currently harbor a small, intimate exhibition that takes visitors through invisible journeys of life with neurofibromatosis type 2.

NF 2 is a genetic disorder in which tumors generate and perpetuate across the surface of skin, the nerves, brain and spinal cord.

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’Top Five’ is a top film of 2014
Updated: December 05, 2014 - 5:23 pm

While it might be an overstatement to call “Top Five” a hip-hop homage to Woody Allen’s well-received comedic films of the 1970s, there is little doubt about his influence in Chris Rock’s new film. Allen is known for starring in, writing and directing his movies, and that is what Rock is doing in this, his most personal film to date.

Like most of Woody’s films, this one is shot entirely in New York City (Rock even visits Brooklyn and Queens, the latter being something Woody would never do!) There is a lot of Woodyesque observational humor (however a lot of it is sexual in nature and far more risque than Allen ever delved into). Finally, Rock’s character is a comic named Andre Allen and I have to assume that the choice of that surname is not a coincidence.

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Wednesday 11/26/2014
Fords beat Buicks in Flushing
Posted: November 26, 2014

In 1928 Erik S. Dahlgard arrived here from Copenhagen, Denmark. A tough man in a new world, he made a good living as the manager of a credit and collection agency during the Depression. In 1953 he opened up the Dahlgard Buick Automobile dealership at 141-50 Northern Blvd. and a used car lot at 150-01 Northern, complete with a service department on Prince Street.

In 1955, as president of the Flushing Lions Club, Dahlgard was an outspoken opponent of the proposed Clearview Expressway. He argued that World War II vets whose homes were slated for destruction to make way for it would not be approved for new loans, as the GI Bill had expired.

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Arts Listings
Posted: November 26, 2014

EXHIBITS

The Daghlian Collection of Chinese Art, highlights of the collection of over 1,600 objects spanning 5,000 years, Queens College, Klapper Hall, 65-30 Kissena Blvd., Flushing, thru Jan. 10. Info: daghlian.qc.cuny.edu.

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Brace yourself: Wintercon is coming to Queens
Updated: December 04, 2014 - 12:06 pm

Frank Patz loves attending comic and science fiction conventions, but has always had to travel outside of Queens to attend them.

“I’ve always wanted to do something like this in Queens,” the Jackson Heights resident said. “Queens has always needed its own comic-con.”

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An unrecognized film genius honored in Astoria
Posted: November 26, 2014

When considering French cinema, almost guaranteed is discussion of French New Wave, but the presence of Jean-Luc Godard, his gun and his girl is so large that a shadow is cast over prior filmmakers and films.

Lost in this fold is Jean GrÈmillon and his collection of subtle-yet-enthralling tales that rock back and forth in a cinematic current film historians dub “poetic realism.”

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Colombian culture done right at Thalia Theatre
Posted: November 26, 2014

Colombian culture is hard to pin down. With each region — Andes, plains, Pacific or Atlantic coast — comes a different flavor.

“Colombia Musical Review” attempts to take the audience on a dance tour of each region and, in turn, the culture it brings to the table.

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Thursday 11/20/2014
In Forest Hills, a lot of Chevys
Posted: November 20, 2014

The 1955 Chevrolet was one of the most successful cars in history. General Motors produced over 1,776,000 of them. The car had a snappy small block V-8 engine and a host of power and luxury options. Chevrolet was no longer thought of as an old man’s car and was raised to a new level by young buyers.

Luby Chevrolet, located at 105-02 Queens Blvd. in Forest Hills, was one of the largest Chevy dealerships in Queens. However, they ended up with hundreds of unsold ’55 models that September, just a few days before the ’56 cars were to be introduced. They were parked on a huge parcel of land that for many years was owned by Cord Meyer and then by The Luby Realty Co. and the Judley Garage Co.

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Arts Listings
Posted: November 20, 2014

EXHIBITS

The Daghlian Collection of Chinese Art, highlights of the collection of over 1,600 objects spanning 5,000 years, Queens College, Klapper Hall, 65-30 Kissena Blvd., Flushing, thru Jan. 10. Info: daghlian.qc.cuny.edu.

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Martha Redbone’s musical aura is complex and diverse
Updated: November 26, 2014 - 11:16 am

The meeting of cultures can result in a beautiful collaboration or a messy hodgepodge of noise. But for Martha Redbone, the mix of cultures that influence her music is an entire entity unto itself.

Her sound is not composed of pieces pasted together as an experiment, instead is like a metamorphic rock that has been compressed and formed into an unique object.

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