Expert Picks

What Should We Do This September?

WSWD’s experts share what they’re up to this month.

All summer you’ve trusted our experts with finding the best NYC has to offer—from chic rooftops pools and trendy restaurants to outdoor concerts and family-friendly warm-weather activities. If you thought they outdid themselves this time around, wait until you see what’s in store for you this fall.

Grab a pen—you’ve got a calendar to fill with a new season of theater, pop-up dining, art, and you-had-to-be-there experiences. Resident foodie Jess Bender plans on showing off her culinary skills while dressed to the nines; Meera Dugal already has her ticket to see a jazz legend live in concert; and John Seroff is about to experience the electric musical festival everyone’s been talking about. We know you want to join them (you’d be crazy not to!).

John Seroff, WSWD music expert

Writing about music for outlets including The Village Voice and Brooklyn Vegan is an impressive experience on its own…but this music expert (he attends around 200 live shows per year) has represented legendary artists of every genre, from the late Chuck Berry to Yo-Yo Ma.

Electric Zoo, September 1–3
The title tells you everything you need to know. Set out on Randall’s Island, this three-day extravaganza of pop EDM starts at midday and lasts until the wee hours. For those unfamiliar with the level of popularity these acts have, may I direct you to headliner DJ Snake, whose 2015 track “Lean On” has more than one billion (yes, with a “b”) streams on Spotify and two billion plays on YouTube. Other multimillion-stream acts Galantis, Above & Beyond, Zedd, Deadmaus, and Armin Van Buuren are among the 100-plus scheduled DJs on five different stages. It may not be Woodstock, but it’ll do for this generation.

Jess Bender, WSWD food expert

With stints writing and editing at Seamless and Zagat under her belt, this up-and-coming food writer spends her days and nights exploring NYC’s underground and off-the-beaten-path dining destinations.

The Hort + Seamus Mullen: Real Food Heals Book Signing and Rooftop Reception, September 18
Book release parties don’t usually come with a bird’s-eye view of the East River from a rooftop garden and an exclusive sustainable tasting with one of the city’s hottest chefs, and yet… Courtesy of Vice Media’s hypermillennial Munchies and the Horticultural Society of New York, join chef Seamus Mullen (of El Colmado and Tertulia fame) as he celebrates his latest cookbook, Real Food Heals, which details how he adopted a healthier lifestyle after being diagnosed with an incurable autoimmune disease.

David Cote, WSWD theater expert

One of the most seasoned voices in the NYC theater scene, this member of the New York Drama Critics Circle has previously appeared in the pages of The New York TimesThe Village Voice, and Time Out New York.

Stairway to Stardom, September 12–23
People who watched public-access TV in the 1980s might recognize the title. It was a variety show in which dancers, singers, and actors strutted their stuff. Let’s just say it was The Gong Show without the gong. This showbiz homage was written, choreographed, and directed by Amanda Szeglowski and celebrates the questionable achievements of untalented but driven amateurs. Expect fierce dance moves and deadpan delivery of text, all lampooning the notion of “making it.” 

The Suitcase Under the Bed, through September 30
The Mint Theater Company bravely puts on plays that are old and long-forgotten—or completely unknown to the majority of local audiences. And for that we should applaud; I’ve had many a revelatory visit to the Mint. Its latest offering is a collection of four short works by Irish playwright Teresa Deevy: “One wedding, three marriage proposals, and two breakups—all in one remarkable evening.” Where else can you get three world premieres and one U.S. premiere performed by seven limber actors playing 22 characters?

Molly Surno, WSWD art expert

The Brooklyn-based installation artist has performed at a number of NYC’s most prestigious venues, including MoMA PS1, Pioneer Works, and BAM.

IdeasCity, September 16
A platform of New Museum, IdeasCity is an annual takeover that explores the future of urban living. The free event will take place at Sara D. Roosevelt Park on the Bowery and is open to the public. The list of activities include talks, demos, workshops, and featured speakers.

Lauren Lipton, WSWD health and wellness expert

Lipton is a well-rounded, New York–based journalist whose work has previously appeared in Allure, The New York Times, and The Wall Street Journal. Her latest book, Yoga Bodies: Real People, Real Stories and the Power of Transformation, was published in March.

Yoga, Art, Music & Magic With 10,000 Buddhas & DJ Drez, September 17
Street artist Amanda Giacomini has made it her mission to paint 10,000 images of Buddha around the world. She’s based in California with her husband, DJ Drez, whose Eastern-flavored music is a favorite of many a yoga class. The pair will be on hand to talk about Giacomini’s art at a rare New York appearance.

Meera Dugal, WSWD music expert

As programming manager of the David Rubenstein Atrium at Lincoln Center, this arts enthusiast has her ears tuned to the eclectic sounds of the city.

Pharaoh Sanders, September 26–30
This legendary saxophone player hails from the bands of John Coltrane and is considered a pioneer of the free jazz movement. Having just played Celebrate Brooklyn! a few weeks ago, Sanders is still reinventing his sound at the ripe age of 76. Not sure how many more times we’ll get to experience him live, so don’t miss this run at Birdland—one of NYC’s oldest jazz clubs.