It’s almost the weekend, and whether you’re in still-snowy New York or surprisingly rainy Los Angeles, the weather is no excuse to miss out on great cultural events — unless you’re binge-watching past seasons of HBO’s “Girls” in advance of the premiere of its final season, in which case, more power to you. That premiere is Sunday evening; if you don’t feel like revisiting the whole series, read Gabe Friedman’s ode to the show in The Schmooze. The Grammy Awards are also Sunday, and Forward favorite Drake is nominated for Album of the Year for “Views.” Tune in to see whether he comes out on top.
If you’re looking to escape, find yourself a copy of Neil Gaiman’s newly released “Norse Mythology,” in which the accomplished fantasy author gives new life to beloved characters like Thor and Loki. For a compelling nonfiction read, look to Daphne Merkin’s “This Close to Happy,” also released this past week; in the book, the former New Yorker staff writer explores her own history with depression. In Longform, read Taffy Brodesser-Akner’s profile of a surprisingly sensitive Tom Hiddleston for GQ.
In New York City, don’t miss comedian Gad Elmaleh at Carnegie Hall on Saturday. (While you wait for the show, revisit Ross Ufberg’s 2016 profile of Elmaleh for the Forward.) On Sunday, get the grandmotherly love advice you didn’t know you were missing at the American Jewish Historical Society, and learn about the music popular with Jewish occupants of New York’s turn-of-the-century tenements at the Museum at Eldridge Street.
It’s a great weekend for classical music in Washington, D.C., where violinist Joshua Bell and pianist Igor Levit will both play on Saturday. (Bell is performing with the National Symphony Orchestra at the Kennedy Center, Levit at the UDC Theater of the Arts.) In Chicago, attend a screening of “Morgenthau,” Max Lewkowicz’s documentary on the legal legacy of the Morgenthau family, at the Spertus Institute. Comedian Scott Rogowsky is still performing at The Virgil in Los Angeles; if you didn’t catch him there last weekend, be sure to do so this one.