Gotham Gazette

The Place for New York Policy and politics

arts and culture

arts and culture

  • stand up ny

    Stand Up NY


    Laughter brings people joy, something that we’ve been missing for so long in New York thanks to the shutdowns by Governor Andrew Cuomo. We need New York to heal. That’s why I convinced my friend Dani Zoldan, the owner of Stand Up NY, to sue the governor. 

    Prior to this lawsuit, Dani was putting on shows in parks and subway cars. He was working around the mandates imposed on small businesses by the governor and other elected representatives. Dani skirted the law and put on

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  • proclamation cast award

    A darkened theatre (photo: Benjamin Kanter/Mayoral Photo Office)


    The COVID-19 pandemic has been detrimental to New York’s economy, with people losing jobs, businesses shuttering, and our city government accumulating astronomical deficits.

    While city and state governments continue to roll out recovery plans, industries that keep getting overlooked, like the arts and dining, have been the backbone of neighborhoods on the West Side of Manhattan.

    Since the start of the pandemic, more than 1,000 New York City restaurants have been

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  • ma office state

    Empty theatres abound (photo: Edwin J. Torres/Mayoral Photo Office)


    Theaters shuttered—some will never return. Countless entertainment professionals in perpetual unemployment—fortunate if they still qualify for unemployment benefits or union-backed healthcare. An entire season of “A Christmas Carol” and “The Nutcracker” productions moved online. 

    The stage was set for Governor Cuomo’s announcement this week to revitalize New York’s critical arts industry—an economic engine, essential creative torrent, and source of joy, community, and soulful

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  • gov cuomo delivers

    Gov. Cuomo during his second 2021 SOTS speech (photo: governor's office)


    In his second of four planned State of the State speeches this week, Governor Andrew Cuomo on Tuesday outlined a plan to revive New York’s struggling economy, get New Yorkers back to work, and to prepare them for jobs that adapt to a post-covid future.

    In his first speech on Monday, Cuomo presented a broad

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  • entarroo

     A Walk Through Slavery at The Billie Holiday Theatre


    Many New Yorkers were stunned when the news hit in 2019 that Weeksville Heritage Center, the preservation site of one of America's first free black communities during the 19th century, would need to close its doors within months without an immediate influx of cash. Given the current funding realities in institutions serving communities of color, those of us leading African, Latinx, Asian, Arab, and Native American-focused (ALAANA) arts and cultural institutions were markedly less surprised.

    A 2017 Helicon

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  • 38979306211 a9f640b2a4 z

    (photo: Benjamin Kanter/Mayoral Photo Office)


    Seeing an Off-Broadway play may have saved my life. Joseph Papp gave me my first acting job in 1985, in Shakespeare in the Park, and offered the cast free tickets to Larry Kramer’s “The Normal Heart” running at The Public, which showed the devastation AIDS wrought on a community forsaken by governments and the press, and its fight to save itself. Seeing the play as a 22-year-old gay man, it scared me into celibacy for a few years, until safer sex guidelines were ingrained in our

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  • 30141612516 60f3a1a680 z

    Mayor de Blasio and the Statue of Liberty (photo: Ed Reed/Mayor's Office)


    New York City is arguably the nation's most historically significant and diverse city. People across the nation look to New York for leadership, enlightenment, and inspiration, particularly in difficult times. Americans these days seem to be experiencing a sense of drift, puzzlement, uncertainty, divisiveness, and apprehension, in part due to the political situation in Washington, D.C.

    There may be several ways New York programs and institutions can help.

    A

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