Tuesday, February 3

Two days after the Super bowl (i.e., doing our laundry to a wistful mix of Cat Power to drown out the sound of the Super Bowl), those who care about athletics are still inserting themselves into everything: A bevy of professional athletes congregates at the Grand Hyatt for the 29th Annual Thurman Munson Awards Dinner, which benefits children and adults with developmental disabilities. Expected are Carlos Beltran, who apparently plays for the Mets; Johnny Damon of the Yankees (hey, we have heard of that guy!); and ripped, 40-something Olympic Swimmer and noted MILF Dara Torres. And in news of the counterculture, experimental dance pioneer Karole Armitage celebrates her 30th anniversary in New York City with a show at Capitale, honoring her pal, the porno artist Jeff Koons. “Karole was the first to—and I’m not a dance critic—to take the classical ballet vocabulary and bring it into postmodern aesthetics,” said artist David Salle, who will attend with a crew of ’80s cohorts including musician Laurie Anderson and artist Ross Bleckner. “One of Karole’s original starting points of her innovation was to choreograph to punk music,” continued Mr. Salle. “Punk rhymes with the cultural moment we’re in now. Punk in the ’70s was really borne out of the recession in the late ’70s.” (Does this mean dog collars are about to make a comeback?) Later, who wants some peace of mind? (Make ours a double, please!) Tibet House stages its Benefit Concert at Carnegie Hall, featuring Patti Smith and her daughter Jesse Smith; brooding Midwesterners the National; and young indie whippersnappers Vampire Weekend. Composer Philip Glass, the longtime organizer of this shindig, explained that he first heard of the Tibetans when “I was traveling in India in 1966, ’67, and I happened to be in northern India, and I arrived in the Himalayas … I saw all these refugee camps and I had no idea who they were, what they were doing there, there were about 250,000 Tibetans … and I asked and I found out.” One thing led to another, and eventually “Richard Gere told us that we were invited by the Dalai Lama to start a Tibetan House in New York.” Love when that happens!  Allen Ginsberg joined us, Patti Smith joined. … Allen was with us every year he was alive after that, Patti almost every year. We’ve had David Bowie play with us twice, Paul Simon twice, Laurie Anderson and Lou Reed several times, Trey Anastasio.” Mr. Glass offered his view of the Chinese occupation of Tibet thusly: “The history of the world is a history of little countries being gobbled up by big countries. But eventually they throw them up again. These types of things turn out to be indigestible.”

 

[29th Annual Thurman Munson Awards Dinner, Grand Hyatt, 109 East 42nd Street, 6 p.m., 212-249-6188; Think Punk! Gala, Capitale, 130 Bowery, 7 p.m., 212-243-7300; Tibet House Benefit Concert, Carnegie Hall, 57th Street and Seventh Avenue, 7:30 p.m., 212-807-0563]

mbryan@observer.com Tuesday, February 3