Some of the best cultural happenings this month.


Checkout 19
Written by Claire-Louise Bennett

Writers will never not be fascinated by the process of writing, but where does that fascination start? Claire-Louise Bennett's latest novel traces how the everyday figures in the life of one English schoolgirl become fodder for imaginative tales while reveling in the power of imagination itself. The complex story of how she comes to lose (and then find herself) in books is heightened by the hardships of adolescence she faces when not buried between the pages.


On Sugarland
Written by Aleshea Harris; Directed by Whitney White

Even though covid truncated its preview period, that hasn't dampened the buzz surrounding Obie Award-winning playwright Aleshea Harris' newest work. Produced by the New York Theatre Workshop, it centers on the life of Sadie, a young girl trying to learn the truth about her mother by calling upon her matriarchal ancestors on historic grounds now covered by a cul-de-sac. Fourteen performers bring the story of communal healing to life with the help of choreographer Raja Feather Kelly.


Directed by Justin Kurzel

Though it may not be as well known in the Northern Hemisphere, 1996's Port Arthur massacre in Tasmania where 35 people were murdered and 23 others were wounded was a major event in Australia's history and an inflection point for its gun laws. Nitram, directed by Justin Kurzel and an official selection of the Cannes Film Festival, depicts (and attempts to understand) the series of events that led up to the national tragedy. It says everything about the quality of the film that even though its ending is entirely expected, it keeps audiences on an anxiety-ridden knife's edge and leaves them with what The Hollywood Reporter stated was, "an aftershock that's hard to shake."


By Telly Justice and Camille Lindsley

In a city like New York, it's easy enough to think that no stone has been unturned in the effort to create new fine dining spaces. What else is there to do, really? Quite a bit, it turns out. Though New York may be full of lush eateries, they almost exclusively run on the sort of old-school, red-faced, macho philosophy that's been around for generations. Started by partners Telly Justice and Camille Lindsley, HAGS is an explicitly queer-friendly space that has the gastronomic chops sans the unnecessary bravado. With the duo having worked in some of the US's best restaurants (Contra, Wildair, Aldo Sohm Bar), the food and drink menu is sure to impress.

By Robert Bredvad


Dawn to Dusk
Goldfinch Gallery

A new solo exhibition by artist Azadeh Gholizadeh, Dawn to Dusk, features works that traverse the connection between landscape and memory. "I have been exploring scale, perspective, depth, and viewpoint in this body of work — terms that I constantly use in art, architecture, and in my daily life when thinking about how my perspective changes when shifting between Farsi and English," Gholizadeh said. The tapestries and sculptural installations featured also question perspective and speak to hand-weaving techniques as a means of passing down culture along with personal and emotional meaning.