New York City Favorite: Rose's Turn

Filed in Gather Entertainment News Channel by on December 28, 2006 0 Comments

Rose’s Turn is my favorite of several good piano bars in New York City’s West Village.  For those not in the know, a brief overview of just what a piano bar is, before I tell you why Rose’s Turn is special.

A piano bar is a social venue for singing.  That said, it is not karaoke.  For one thing, the music is live (piano, bet you figured that part out, huh?).  And for another, there’s not convenient monitor to help you with the words.  You must know the words to the song if you get up to sing (more on this later).  Interspersed with audience members getting up to sing (and this is not, let me remind you, an open mic night for your original songs), group sing-a-longs are constant, as are regular performances from the staff who, at Rose’s Turn, all have stellar voices and fabulous performance styles.

Rose’s Turn is such a treat as a piano bar for three reasons: the fantastic staff, the fantastic patrons and the range of music.  Whereas other piano bars my specialize in just one style (i.e., Marie’s Crisis, located just next door which only does show tunes), the folks at Rose’s Turn know and love a wide range of stuff – from the expected show tunes to 80s music to pop to classic country.  Only here can you hear Crazy, All that Jazz, Hotel California and Tainted Love – all sung astoundingly well — within a 30 minute period. 

My favorite performers and bartenders (they are one and the same) at Rose’s Turn are Michael Dionne (who is sweet, funny, flirty and sings this hilarious song called “Rich Famous and Powerful” that utterly rocks my sad little struggling actor world), Kimlee  Hicks who has the attitude every New York bar needs and a heartbreakingly expressive voice (you must see her wing Millwork from the musical Working) and Rainie Cole who will provide you the best Patsy Cline you’ve ever heard.

Now, before you visit Rose’s Turn, a few words on piano bar and rose’s Turn etiquette.  First, Rose’s Turn is in the West Village, a very gay neighborhood.  If you’re not okay with the gay, please stay home; you won’t have a good time and neither will we.  Second, when people are singing solos be polite and listen.  If you must engage in a conversation, do it quietly so as not to disturb other patrons.  If you get up to sing, know the lyrics and be sober enough to remember them.  Rose’s Turn is a kind audience for anyone who makes an effort, but rather intolerant of those who don’t.  Finally, please please please be nice to the staff, and tip them well – they deserve it and it’s the bulk of their income from this work. 

Rose’s Turn is located at 55 Grove Street and can be reached via telephone at 212-366-5438 and on the web at http://www.rosesturn.com.  They are open seven days a week form 4pm to 4am, and also have an upstairs performance space in addition to the downstairs piano bar.  While there is no cover for the piano bar, there is a drink minimum on some nights.

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