This Week in New Haven (February 12 - 18)

This Week in New Haven (February 12 - 18)

This Valentine’s week, love languages include local history, colorful beads, interactive art and, most of all, jazz.

Monday, February 12
In the next virtual Mondays at Beinecke talk at 4 p.m., Hope McGrath, lead researcher for the Yale and Slavery Research Project, explores “The Many Stories of Yale’s Black Sweeps”—custodians—between 1865 and 1900. In a time of widespread discrimination, “Yale custodians were often prominent members of New Haven’s Black community, active in church and civic affairs in the 19th century, and their labor was essential to the university. This talk focuses on their stories, reconstructed through photographs, newspapers, Yale publications, oral histories, and more, and discusses open questions and ongoing research.”

Tuesday, February 13
At 7 p.m., Elm City Social hosts an intimate “Love on the Rocks” pre-Valentine’s Day cocktail class covering a few classics: the espresso martini, the old-fashioned and the daiquiri.

At 8, Cafe Nine hosts That 1 Guy, a.k.a. Mike Silverman. Using “The Magic Pipe,” a “monstrosity of metal, strings, and electronics” he invented, Silverman “facilitates the dynamic live creation of music and magic.” Opening the show is another one-man operation: Connecticut’s own The Forest Room.

Wednesday, February 14 – Valentine’s Day
At 6 p.m., Dangle’s hosts “a night of love and laughter” powered by four standup comics: Shaquana Cochran, Ben Kirsch, emcee Manny Sierra and headliner Davey Lozano.

Jazz comes two ways tonight. The first, starting at 7 at Best Video in Hamden, features saxophonist Allen Lowe and a “coterie of musical guests” he calls The All-Stars. The second, starting at 9 in The Owl Shop’s long smoke-filled room, features resident “saloon-singer” act The Saint James Band, who “work… spontaneous experimentation into their respectful reinterpretations of familiar popular standards” by the likes of Cole Porter, Fats Waller and George Gershwin.

Thursday, February 15
Today, tomorrow and Saturday from 3 to 8 p.m., artist Ein Kim’s interactive art installation YOU SEE WHAT YOU SEE “invite you to create your own waves of light and sound” on “a fantastical journey into the world of watery reflections” at 217 Park Street. “Admission is free to the public, but we strongly recommend registration to ensure availability.”

Honoring the Dixwell neighborhood’s considerable jazz heritage, NXTHVN hosts an “intimate, intergenerational” 6 p.m. performance curated by New Haven drummer Ryan Sands and featuring “Eneji Alungbe (bass), Jesse Hameen II (drums), Jeff Fuller (bass), Haneef N. Nelson (trumpet), and Andrew Wilcox (piano). Join us for great tunes and complimentary wine. Bring your loved ones to be serenaded by these soul-feeding musicians as we linger in the loving energy of Valentine’s Day.”

Also at 6, a CRY/RAGE FEST at Firehouse 12 offers the chance to “let it out,” with “it” being “the blues” in the wake of V-Day. For the “cry” portion of the evening, DJ Hugh Betta will offer a “gloriously heart-wrenching” R&B set. For the “rage,” he’ll cue up “bangers from Paramore, Evanescence, Fiona, No Doubt, The Cranberries, and more.”

Also at 6, and also aiming to help guests let it out, is a Sexy Sober Open Mic Night at Strange Ways. “Bring your thoughts about love, heartbreak, and everything in-between. Enjoy some good vibes and light refreshments in a safe and welcoming environment, and feel free to express yourself without fear of judgement.”

Friday, February 16
Rising bass (as in the electronic music genre) artist Jaenga headlines a 7:30 p.m. bill at The Beeracks in East Haven, and he’s joined by some of his “friends”: Dink the Poof, Stubbs, Simple Noises and Dreamulator.

Saturday, February 17
At 4 p.m. in Yale’s Battell Chapel, New Haven Chorale presents “Voices of Prayer and Power,” a family-friendly concert featuring “an inspiring program in honor of Black History Month” led by “singing sensation Jeremiah Paul and friends.” The show is set to include “a cappella spirituals, rousing and moving gospel selections, and music by contemporary African American composers such as Moses Hogan, Undine Smith Moore, and Rosephanye Powell.”

At Westville’s Third Space, local pop/funk act Love n’ Co leads a “Lovefest” with Lars and Their Lilac Ukulele and O.K. Company. “Come join us to celebrate the release of our latest single, ‘Chocolate,’” the headliners say, also promising “vendors serving a variety of goods and services from food to tattoos.”

Gryphon’s Pub, Yale’s grad student bar and social hall, opens its usually private doors to the public for a Swing Fling dance organized by the Yale Swing, Blues & Fusion club. Powered by a live jazz band, the night opens with a beginner’s lesson at 7:30, then shifts to a social dance at 8:30. (For beginners who really want to prepare, there’s a three-hour boot camp starting at 1:30 p.m. in the same space.)

At 7:30 tonight and 2 p.m. Sunday, Yale Opera and Yale Philharmonia perform Igor Stravinsky’s The Rake’s Progress at the Shubert. “Featur a clever neoclassical score and juicy roles for Yale Opera’s phenomenal young cast,” this “classic Faustian tale… warns us to be careful what we wish for” via “the misadventures of Tom Rakewell, who, lured with a promised inheritance into unknowingly making a deal with the devil, leaves his fiancée, Anne Trulove, in the country in search of the excitement of London. Tom’s mysterious new servant, Nick Shadow, is only too happy to oblige Tom on a path of debauchery.”

At Space Ballroom in Hamden, comedic pop/rock headliner Wolves of Glendale aims to be both “musically satisfying and genuinely funny” during an 8 p.m. bill. Opener Telula, meanwhile, is wholly serious about their “soulful and dynamic” but also cool and calm blend of funk, jazz and pop.

Sunday, February 18
Love is still in the air thanks to a wedding and event expo featuring 40 vendors (and counting) from noon to 3 at Hamden’s Counter Weight Brewing.

And it remains there for a “Calling In Love Ceremonial Concert” starting at 7 at West Rock Wellness, which promises “an evening filled with heart-opening cacao, magical sound healing, and live music.”

Written by Dan Mims. Image, featuring Yale Swing, Blues & Fusion dancers in 2019, photographed by Kathy Leonard Czepiel. Readers are encouraged to verify times, locations, prices and other details before attending events.

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