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W42ST Daily 7/31/2020

An alert appears in my Instagram messages. “You are badass and amazing,” my friend has written. “You are beautiful, strong, and incredible.” Well, that’s nice.

She asks me to post a black and white selfie, and pass the empowering message on to 50 other women. I pause, uncertain whether to accept the “challenge.” (Who wasn’t burned by #blackouttuesday?) But as my feed fills up with the faces of beautiful, smart, funny, vulnerable, joyful women – women including Ava DuVernay and Viola Davis – I’m filled with an overwhelming sense of sisterhood. No one knows why we’re doing this or where it started, but it gathers an astonishing momentum.

In just two weeks, more than six million women have posted a photograph on Instagram using the #challengeaccepted hashtag. It has been criticized for being tone deaf and pointless, which could be true (though some, like my friend Grace, used the opportunity to include a second black and white photograph of Breonna Taylor, whose murderers have still not been brought to justice).

And while there were suggestions that it had begun as a Turkish campaign to highlight violence against women, yesterday it turned out that it may have originated with a single post by a Brazilian journalist.

Whatever the source, this newsletter is dedicated to the women of Hell’s Kitchen – my beautiful friends, I see you. Let’s continue to lift each other up, to educate ourselves, and use our voices to make real, lasting change.


SPONSORED POST
HYHK is seeking an artist to create a large-scale mural on a bridge wall in Midtown as part of our neighborhood beautification initiatives. Though there is no required theme, we ask that the artwork capture the importance of community, shared spaces, diversity, and equality. Learn more here.


NEW YORK STORIES
When we think about all the things we’ve lost in the last four months – the things that make living in New York so magical – the experience of a live performance is perhaps one of the most meaningful and sorely missed. 

The debate over the what the future of theater looks like will continue for months to come, but it’s a pretty good bet that it might be something like this. Read the full story here.


NAILED IT
Ruya asked for your post COVID nail salon recommendations – and two came out on top for safety and service. “Stylish Ten nails for ever!” said Emily. Leanne voted for Nam’s: “I was there about 18 days ago and had a spa pedi with a gel mani,” she said. “They were all masked and had barriers up for safety.”


DO THESE THINGS

SEE SHAKESPEARE
The Public Theater’s 2019 Shakespeare in the Park production of Much Ado About Nothing is available to stream for free. Watch it here.

GO LIVE WITH THE ATLANTIC
The Atlantic Theater Company goes live this afternoon with Creators Cut: the Secret Life of Bees, featuring Susan Birkenhead, Sam Gold, Lynn Nottage, and Duncan Sheik. Register here.

HAVE HAPPY HOUR AT THE MET
String quartet Ethel and Friends performs from home tonight – it’s not quite the Met Museum’s Balcony Bar, but it’ll have to do. Tune in here.

HAVE COCKTAILS WITH A CURATOR
Tonight, join The Frick curator Xavier F Salomon as he discusses Veronese’s Choice between Virtue and Vice, accompanied by a Negroni Sbagliato. The details, including the cocktail recipe (plus an alternative mocktail for non-drinkers), are here. Cheers!

STREAM OPERA
The Metropolitan Opera presents Verdi’s Il Trovatore tonight, a 2011 performance starring Sondra Radvanovsky, Dolora Zajick, Marcelo Álvarez and Dmitri Hvorostovsky. Rent it for $4.99 here.

SEE HAMILTON (VIRTUALLY)
The original cast of Hamilton are taking part in a virtual fundraiser tonight and over the next two weeks, with proceeds going to organizations working to end systemic racism. The first one is tonight – find out more here.

CLEAN UP
Corey Johnson’s office and local block associations are organizing a district clean up tomorrow. Meet up locations include Hell’s Kitchen Park (10th Ave – 47th/48th St), the SE corner of 9th Ave – 45th St, the SW corner of W51st St – 9th Ave. Sign up here.

Then on Sunday, Catie Savage will be hosting a community clean-up. Meet at 11.30am at Jasper’s Taphouse, W51st St – 9th Ave. Gloves and bags will be provided. 

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