The October Calendar: Events for Each Day This Month

By Troy Segal

Complement your calendar with this cornucopia of offerings — a guide to the top talks, tastings, tours, and screenings in New York City this October.


Hepburn with Cary Grant in The Philadelphia Story.

October 1. Follow the ups and downs of actress Katharine Hepburn’s career, which spanned decades, though not without difficulty. 92nd Street Y.

October 2. Pull up a figurative chair and learn about American furniture in the early decades of the 1800s, from an antiques dealer who specializes in the period. Bartow-Pell Mansion Museum.

October 3. It takes two to tango — and you both can learn how in this master class sponsored by the Joyce Theater.

October 4. Tour the memorabilia-filled spaces of the townhouse Franklin Roosevelt occupied with Eleanor, their five children, and his mother, lovingly restored by current owner Hunter College.

October 5. Discover “Who Was Mark Twain?” at this dramatic lecture, punctuated by re-enacted scenes from Huckleberry Finn. Aesthetic Realism Foundation.

October 6. Ponder what current styles say about masculine identity as a fashion authority (Barneys creative consultant Simon Doonan) and a philosopher (Dion Mattison) discuss and deconstruct the art of menswear. Pratt Institute.


October 7. Wax nostalgic as Marlo Thomas, aka That Girl, chats with Gloria Steinem about the impact the 1966-71 series—for all its light-heartedness—had on the feminist movement. Museum of the Moving Image.


October 8. Celebrate the new book Heroes of the Comics, in which Drew Friedman unveils his full-page color portraits of the pioneering comic book creators, such as Superman creators Siegel & Shuster (above). Society of Illustrators.

October 9. Open your ears as Dr. Henry Louis Gates and African writer/filmmaker Manthia Diawara discuss the music of Mali. Metropolitan Museum of Art.

October 10. Drink in the dramatic madrigals of Monteverdi, preceded by a pre-concert talk. Morgan Library & Museum.


Manabu Ikeda, (b. 1973), Foretoken (detail), 2008. © Manabu Ikeda, courtesy Mizuma Art Gallery

October 11. Unearth the new visions of contemporary Japanese artists at this panel discussion among curators and the artists featured in the exhibit Garden of Unearthly Delights. Japan Society.

October 12. Watch the wooden structure of a duplicate of the historic Gwoździec Synagogue come together (on film) and hear how the participants did it. YIVO Institute for Jewish Research.

October 13. Gain access to some secret recipes from Death & Co., a cozy speakeasy renowned for its modern twist on classic cocktails. 92nd Street Y­.


October 14. Strap on your helmet and go into a virtual orbit of Mother Earth, with astronaut Chris Hadfield (author of You Are Here: Around the World in 92 Minutes) at the helm. American Museum of Natural History.


L.A. Dance Project. Photo: Laurent Philippe

October 15. Get into position to hear Benjamin Millepied (aka Mr. Natalie Portman) as he talks with dance critic Deborah Jowitt about the troupe he’s just founded, the L.A. Dance Project. Brooklyn Academy of Music (BAM).

October 16. Compare the elegant styles of two early-19th century cabinetmakers, Honoré Lannuier and Duncan Phyfe, who competed to put New York furniture-making on the map, at this lecture by a Metropolitan Museum of Art curator. Bartow-Pell Mansion Museum.

October 17. Attend a new musical about the building of the Brooklyn Bridge, based on the Hart Crane poem The Bridge, at this workshop performance. Brooklyn Historical Society.

October 18. Allow your taste buds to water as Israeli-born and –bred super-chef Yotam Ottolenghi, whose empire of London delis offers the best takeaway in town (as the Brits say), talks about his new cookbook. The TimesCenter.

October 19.Get a sneak peak of new works by choreographer Brian Brooks, former Creative Resident of the Joyce Theater. Guggenheim Museum.

October 20. Run rings around Saturn, then follow the journey of the spacecraft Cassini and its probe, which spent 10 years examining that far-off planet. American Museum of Natural History.

October 21. Join Abraham Lincoln in getting inspiration from the words and deeds of our nation’s Founding Fathers, as detailed in this era-spanning lecture. New-York Historical Society.


Angels in America. Photo: Jan Versweyveld

October 22. Gain insight into a theatrical epic, as Tony Kushner — whose Angels in America trilogy is being performed this season — appears to chat with director Ivo van Hove and NPR reporter Neda Ulaby. Brooklyn Academy of Music (BAM).

October 23. Learn about the links between clothing and choreography at a symposium on the intersection of dance and fashion. Museum at the Fashion Institute of Technology.

October 24. Find out about a hero’s fall from grace — specifically, that of the young, dashing Marquis de Lafayette — at this lecture. 92nd Street Y.

October 25. Examine the evolution of morality in human beings — the subject of a conversation among religious, psychological and medical experts, part of Lincoln Center’s White Light Festival. Walter Reade Theater.


October 26. Meet the ancestors of the Game of Thrones gang, as author George R.R. Martin appears to discuss the publication of a new prehistory. 92nd Street Y.

October 27. Hear this true-life fairy tale of a humble farm boy who emigrated from Norway to the U.S., made a fortune in the gold rush, and ended up founding the University of California at Berkeley. Scandinavia House: The Nordic Center in America.

October 28. Make a study of feudal fighting fashions in this gallery tour of the arms and armor of the Crusades. Morgan Library & Museum.

October 29. Thrill to the story of the Hungarian Gold Train, which carried valuables confiscated from Hungarian Jews during World War II, as author Ayelet Waldman reads from her novel based on the stranger-than-truth events. The Jewish Museum.

October 30. Ponder how art and scholarship shape our understanding of the past, often in contradictory ways, at this panel discussion between artists and historians.. YIVO Institute for Jewish Research.


October 31. Don a costume — this year’s theme is garden of earthly delights — and join the Village Halloween Parade along Sixth Avenue.