“Every lyric I’ve written has been written on these streets” | Manhattan Times

The Manhattan Times spoke to Lin-Manuel Miranda and Luis Miranda, who serves as NoMAA Chairman of the Board of Directors, about the Uptown Arts Stroll, filming In the Heights uptown, and how the SATs and Usnavi intersect for the composer.

Interview conducted by Led Black, The Uptown Collective.

The Stroll this year will coincide with the filming of In the Heights uptown. What does that feel like?

Lin: I can just say that it’s an honor. I can’t believe that we are going to be filming In the Heights next week. To be honored here at Art Stroll hopefully for all of the energy we are going to bring to Washington Heights. We all posted over the weekend that we are looking for extras from Washington Heights to be in the movie. To be able to represent the neighbor with people from within in the neighborhood is such a dream come true for me.

Luis: In 2006, the Art Stroll was 6 years old. In the Heights was at the Richard Rodgers Theatre and we asked permission from the producers to give the Uptown Art Stroll guides for two weeks to the people waiting to go in to the theater. Because it was a way of letting them know that there was a real neighborhood that is called Washington Heights.

Lin, there are going to be a lot of Usnavis uptown. Any advice?

Lin: There are two really exciting takes coming up. There is Anthony Ramos who played my son Phillip in Hamilton and who is now playing Usnavi in the movie and then there is the student in George Washington High School. That is really exciting for me because that’s the hometown school and where I took my SATs. I’m really excited to see that production and see what those young students have been practicing.

What do you think has changed the most uptown since you wrote the musical?

Lin: I think everything that was written inside that musical is more relevant now then it’s ever been before. The issue of gentrification, of immigration, of what do we carry on as our legacy when our parents moved here from somewhere else. I think all those issues are issues that this neighborhood can relate to. And I think those issues have grown more prevalent. I remember the reviews of the musical would say “Well, are these issues very pressing?” You can’t look at a newspaper without seeing immigration and gentrification at the forefront. In a lot of ways I think the times have caught up to the show. I just think it’s more relevant now than it was in 2008.

Read more: “Every lyric I’ve written has been written on these streets” | Manhattan Times

Related: About Last Night…

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About Last Night…

2019 Uptown Arts Stroll Opening Reception

2019 Uptown Arts Stroll Opening Reception. Photo: Cristóbal Vivar

 

We did it again Uptown. The 2019 Uptown Arts Stroll opening reception was a rousing success. The event not only honored such Uptown stalwarts as Mino Lora, Dance Theatre of Harlem, Hike The Heights and Obrien Luna, but Uptown super-hero, Lin-Manuel Miranda, made a special appearance as promised. The energy in the opulent United Palace last night was something special; community, joy and Uptown Love in abundance. The homie Kelvin Grullon did a bang up job of hosting the festivities. Much praises also go out to Jazz Power Initiative for putting on a stellar show. Shout out to Hennessy for providing the sublime libations, one of which was called In The Heights.

With that said, the 2019 Uptown Arts Stroll has now begun, hit up www.artstroll.com to make sure you don’t miss any of the art awesomeness taking place throughout Uptown. Remember folks, use the hashtag #UptownArtStroll on all of your 2019 stroll pics and videos for your chance to win a free night’s stay at the Edge Hotel. By the way, the closing reception is on Thursday, June 27 at the Harlem School of the Arts with performances by DJ LiKWUiD, HSA students and 2019 Honoree Obrien Luna. Between the OPENING and CLOSING receptions you will find about 300 EVENTS, EXHIBITIONS and OPEN STUDIOS at www.artstroll.com.

Check out more pics here.

Twitter: @NoMAAarts

IG: @nomaanyc

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Site: www.artstroll.com

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Open For Business: Zona De Cuba

BY Led Black (@Led_Black)

Restaurateur extraordinaire Fernando Mateo has done it again.

Just in time for Memorial Day Weekend, Zona De Cuba (558 Grand Concourse) is now open for business and it is a game changer. This is your new go to spot, trust us on this one folks. The Bronx will never be the same again.

Located on the rooftop of the former Bronx General Post Office building, Zona De Cuba is quite simply magnificent. From the moment you exit the elevator, you know that this place is something special. It is elegant, expansive and downright swank. Imagine La Marina but on a rooftop.

The outstanding Cuban fare is elevated but still retains its authenticity. The décor is lush and sophisticated. The nods to Latinidad are understated but powerful. In short, this is the best spot in the greater Uptown area and it just opened up. Check it out ASAP and tell them the Uptown Collective sent you.

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Harlem EatUp! 5 In Pictures

Photography by @eyeshootnyc | IG

Harlem Eat 5

As usual, Harlem EatUp!, did not disappoint. The stellar Harlem food and culture extravaganza manages to somehow get bigger and better every year. Folks came from all over the city to partake in the gastronomical magic. Harlem icon Dapper Dan made an appearance and was instantly mobbed by his adoring supporters. All in all, Harlem EatUp! was lit and if you missed it, you missed a lot. Make sure you don’t let that happen next year.

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Uptown Art: Women’s Lives At Stake

The always-astute Michelle Alexander penned a must-read Op-Ed in the NY Times where she admits to being raped as a college student. The searing piece is in response to the right’s latest maneuvers to control women’s bodies. If Trump and his minions have their way, Roe Vs. Wade will be overturned. Please click here to read the piece. The art seen above is by brilliant local artist Andrea Arroyo and perfectly and simply elucidates what is at stake.

Check out: www.andreaarroyo.com

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05/28/19: Uptown Literary Happy Hour @ Word Up Books

Come out to Word Up Books on Tuesday, May 28 from 6 to 9 to kick off this year’s Book Expo with an Uptown Literary Happy Hour, with five amazing authors presenting their new works: Speaking of Summer by Kalisha Buckhanon, The Water Dancer by Ta-Nehisi Coates, Ordinary Girls: A Memoir by Jaquira Díaz, The Ungrateful Refugee: What Immigrants Never Tell You by Dina Nayeri and Heed the Hollow: Poems by Malcolm Tariq. Open to all!

For more info: www.wordupbooks.wordpress.com

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Open Casting Call: In The Heights Film

Grant Wilfley Casting is holding an open call for the feature film IN THE HEIGHTS. Seeking people to play Latino neighbors of Washington Heights. Open call will be held: Saturday, June 1 from 11a-3p at 269 Wadsworth Avenue (at 187th Street / across the street from St Elizabeth Church). Be prepared to have a digital photo taken. Filming June-September in NYC. SAG-AFTRA are welcome to attend, but this is a NonUnion open call. If you cannot attend the open call, see instruction below on how to submit.

Grant Wilfley Casting is seeking people to portray the following in the musical feature film IN THE HEIGHTS.
– Latino Washington Heights neighbors
– Latinos in bathing suits at the pool (please note if you can swim or are comfortable standing in 4ft deep water)
– Latino club goers dancing salsa (ages 20s-30s; no professional experience necessary, this is background work)
– Latino and African American basketball players (ages 20s-30s)
– Latino and African American soccer players (ages 20s-30s)
Filming begins in June in NYC. Email your name, union status (SAG-AFTRA or NonUnion), phone number, and current/recent photos to theheights@gwcnyc.com. If under 18, please note your age.

For more info: www.gwcnyc.com/

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New complex rises in West Harlem | Manhattan Times

By Gregg McQueen

From bread rising to ground breaking.

Another building will ascend into the West Harlem skyscape.

The Taystee Building will feature 350,000-square-feet of space for organizations devoted to the life sciences, technology, nonprofits and the arts.

Developed by Janus Property Company, the 11-story building is being constructed on the long-abandoned site of the former Taystee bread bakery, which closed over 30 years ago.

It is part of the “Manhattanville Factory District” that Janus is creating from West 125th Street to West 128th Street, a multi-building effort that is completely transforming the neighborhood’s landscape.

The property was sold to Janus by the New York City Economic Development Corporation (NYCEDC) after a citywide competition. Janus spent about $350 million to demolish the dilapidated former factory, and Empire State Development has offered up to $10 million in performance-based grants.

Although construction began last July and several stories of the building’s frame are already visible rising about West 126th Street, the developers hosted a celebratory “ground-breaking” ceremony on May 9 that drew city and state officials.

Read more: New complex rises in West Harlem | Manhattan Times

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Spread Love It’s The Uptown Way

BY Led Black (@Led_Black)

I took this picture at exactly 8:56 pm this past Saturday on the little stretch of Cabrini Blvd that runs between 190th Street and Fort Tryon Park while I was walking the pooch. I hesitated posting it because as a rule I do not like to highlight negativity of any kind and this was definitely hateful and bigoted. But to be honest, I really wasn’t sure what the enigmatic and odious image meant but if the Trump name is on it you know it can’t be good. Anyway, I decided against posting it and promptly forgot about it.

2 days later, I was pleasantly surprised to find that someone had taken the time to put a big, beautiful heart over the detestable chicken scratch. (SWIPE LEFT) In the end, at least here in Uptown Manhattan, love does trump hate.

Spread Love It’s The Uptown Way For Real.

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