It's In Queens (April 18 through April 24)
Opportunities for self-improvement are all over the borough these days with lectures on the Underground Railroad, the Civil War, the Holocaust, the meaning of life, Fort Totten and historical paintings. But there are also opportunities to enjoy jazz, four-part harmonies and Flamenco or a good movie or musical. Here’s the rundown.
- April 18, America, America, 2 pm. As part of a 10-week series on the immigrant experience in the U.S., the Queens Museum of Art presents America, America, an Elia Kazan movie telling the story of a young man who is based on Kazan’s uncle. QMA, Flushing Meadows-Corona Park, www.queensmuseum.org, (718) 592-9700.
- April 18, Audition Notice and Open Cast Call for Les Miserables, 7 pm. Try out for the world’s most beloved musical, Les Miserables, which will play in Douglaston in August. All ages. American Martyrs Sullivan Hall, Bell Boulevard and Union Turnpike, Hollis Hills, AKPHANTOM@aol.com.
- April 19, Cultural Crossroads: Korea Meets Greece, 8 pm. Two cultures, one stage and an open dance floor. The Vong Pak’s Korean Drum and Dance Troupe perform Korean music and dance dressed in traditional regalia followed by Yianni Papastefanou and his ensemble in an evening of traditional music and dance from the Greek Isles. $15. Flushing Town Hall, 137-35 Northern Blvd., Flushing, www.flushingtownhall.org, (718) 463-7700.
- April 19, How About You?, 7:30 pm. New York Irish Center presents a 2007 comedy drama from a story by Maeve Binchy and starring Vanessa Redgrave, Brenda Fricker, Joss Ackland, Hayley Atwell and Imelda Staunton. Plus two shorts: Oxygen by Peter Sheridan (2004); and Give Up Yer Aul Sins by Brown Bag Films (Oscar nominated). NYIC, 10-40 Jackson Ave., LIC, www.newyorkirishcenter.org.
- April 19, Bye Bye Birdie, 7:30 pm (April 20 & 21, 2:30 pm). Come rock and roll with the crowd in this captivating musical. Suggested donation $12. St. Luke’s Church, 85 Greenway South, Forest Hills, email@example.com, (718) 268-7772.
- April 20, Children’s Carnival, 11 am – 6 pm (April 21, 11 am – 6 pm). The only working historical farm in NYC hosts a carnival in the apple orchard. Carnival rides, midway games, prizes, hayrides and children’s entertainment. $11. Queens County Farm Museum, 73-50 Little Neck Pkwy., Glen Oaks, www.queensfarm.org, (718) 347-3276.
- April 20, The Struggles of African-Americans in Queens (1790-1870), 1 pm. The Greater Astoria Historical Society hosts a history roundtable on the Underground Railroad in Queens and Long Island. The event is dedicated to the memory of Harriet Tubman, who died 100 years ago. $5. GAHS, 35-20 Bway. Astoria/LIC, www.astorialic.org, (718) 278-0700.
- April 20, Gazing Through Time: Portraits at King Manor, 3 pm. Tour the 200-year collection of portraits at King Manor. Artist Hannah Barrett will introduce the characters portrayed in several paintings, along with their histories and mysteries. Suggested donation $5. King Manor, Rufus King Park, 153rd Street at Jamaica Avenue, Jamaica, www.kingmanor.org, (718) 206-0545.
- April 20, Cositas: Little Things, 1 pm. In celebration of Earth Day, artist Monica Rodriguez offers Recycled into Art, a family-friendly workshop. Participants can bring dry-cleaning wire hangers that no longer have a usable cardboard tube and learn how to fashion them into display stands. $4/free children. Voelker Orth Museum, 149-19 38th Ave., Flushing, www.vomuseum.org, (718) 359-6227.
- April 21, Roots of Flamenco: Gypsy Soul, 4 pm. Music and dance from Spain, India, Persia and the Middle East. $35. Thalia Spanish Theatre, 41-17 Greenpoint Ave., Sunnyside, www.thaliatheatre.org, (718) 729-3880.
- April 21, Rich Little: A Collection of Voices with The Four Freshman, 3 pm. Infamous for skewing political figures, Rich Little has charmed, amused, annoyed, and lampooned politicians from here to his native Canada. The Four Freshman formed one of the top vocal groups of the 1950s. They continue to bring their unique brand of harmony to audiences worldwide. $45. Queensborough Performing Arts Center, 222-05 56th Ave., Bayside, (718) 631-6311, www.visitqpac.org.
- April 21, Angels of Mercy Lecture, 2:30 pm. Professor William Seraile discusses his book Angels of Mercy: White Women and the History of New York’s Colored Asylum. Seraile explores the history of the Colored Orphan Asylum, founded in New York City in 1836 as the nation’s first orphanage for African-American children and the Quaker women that ran the facility. The agency weathered three wars, two major financial panics, a devastating fire during the 1863 Draft Riots, several epidemics, waves of racial prejudice and severe financial difficulties to care for orphaned, neglected and delinquent children. $8. Historic Kingsland Homestead, 143-35 37th Ave., Flushing, www.queenshistoricalsociety.org, (718) 939-0647.
- April 21, Stephen Maitland-Lewis Reads from Award-Winning Holocaust Story, 4 pm. Stephen Maitland-Lewis will read from his book Emeralds Never Fade, a story of the Holocaust. The novel ties together music and the world of finance with the Holocaust and Israel in an effort to define what it means to be Jewish in the modern world. The award-winning author will also discuss his friendship with jazz legend Louis Armstrong and how it affected his own life and career and the impact of the jazz greats legacy on the world. Queens College Lefrak Concert Hall, 65-30 Kissena Blvd., Flushing, www.qc.cuny.edu, (718) 997-5597.
- April 21, Historic New York: Fort Totten Tunnel Tour, 1 pm. Urban Park rangers will teach about the Ice Age glaciers, Native Americans, Dutch traders, British Redcoats and the Underground Railroad. Their stories can be found in the names of local streets, architecture and parks. Free. Fort Totten Park, Cross Island Parkway Service Road, Bayside, (718) 352-1769.
- April 21, Haiti Cultural Exchange Presents: Kaleb, 2:30 pm. Haitian-American director Kervan Barthelemy screens and discusses his first full-length feature film, Kaleb, about a young man accused of rape and the frictions in his strict Haitian family. Free. Queens Central Library, 89-11 Merrick Blvd., Jamaica, www.queenslibrary.org.
- April 21, Growing and Aging: Talk and Tea Reading, 1 pm. A reading-and-discussion series in partnership with the New York Council for the Humanities. The Voelker Orth Museum provides the tea, the setting, reading materials and an engaging facilitator. Participants contribute to the discussion. The texts include poetry, essays and a novel that explore middle age, growing older, caring for aged loved ones, and finding satisfaction in later stages of life. $5 suggested donation. Participants are encouraged to register in advance as seating is limited. VOM, 149-19 38th Ave., Flushing, www.vomuseum.org, (718) 359-6227.
- April 22, The Meaning of Life, 1:30 pm. Professor Raymond Belliotti will speak about the meaning of life. Belliotti has published books and articles on ethics, sexual morality, politics, feminism, sports and Marxism. Suggested donation $6. Central Queens Y, 67-09 108th St., Forest Hills, www.cqy.org, (718) 268-5011.
- April 23, Here’s to the Ladies Who Bling and Swing, 8 pm. Recording artist Antoinette Montague and her Quintet honor great women of jazz such as Etta Jones, Ella Fitzgerald, Nina Simone and Judy Garland. $15. Flushing Town Hall, 137-35 Northern Blvd., Flushing, www.flushingtownhall.org, (718) 463-7700.
- April 24, Civil War: 1863 The Tide Turns, 1 pm. A lecture/discussion on how the North was able to reverse the tide and start defeating the Confederacy. Free. Greater Astoria Historical Society, 35-20 Bway., Astoria/LIC, www.astorialic.org, (718) 278-0700.
- April 24, Jamaica Bay Community History Night, 4 pm. Share your stories about life in and around Jamaica Bay at this special event organized by the Queens Memory Project and Jamaica Bay Lives. Bring old family photographs and home movies and tell stories on camera to help preserve the community’s history. Broad Channel Library, 16-26 Crossbay Blvd., Broad Channel, firstname.lastname@example.org, (917) 207-8715.
- April 24, LIC Empty Bowls, 5 pm. End hunger one bowl at a time. Bring family and friends to share a simple meal (donated by Manducatis Rustica) and take home a beautiful handmade bowl created by local artists from BrickHouse Ceramic Art Center in exchange for a $25 donation to Here’s Life Inner City. Manducatis, 46-33 Vernon Blvd., LIC, email@example.com, (718) 784-4907.
The “It’s In Queens” column is produced by the Queens Tourism Council with the hope that readers will enjoy the borough’s wonderful att