The Nuyorican Poets Cafe
Living at the East Village’s Greatest Building means tapping into a rich vein of New York history. From a small Dutch neighborhood centered around Stuyvesant Street to a home for waves of immigrants to the countercultural epicenter of mid-20th-century Manhattan, the area east of the Bowery has gone through many phases, and many pieces of its past are still vibrant locales to this day.
One of the richest pieces of the East Village’s cultural heritage is just a short walk south of EVGB. The Nuyorican Poets Cafe has been the proving ground for multiple generations of Latinx and black poets, singers, and writers, as well as serving as an entertainment destination and cultural landmark in the middle of Alphabet City. Founded in 1973 by Nuyorican poet Miguel Algarín and his cohort of fellow Nuyorican writers, the Nuyorican Poets Cafe began as a rented Irish pub before expanding into its own storefront. The group that gathered there to workshop and perform rejected the mainstream academic and literary poetry for an active vision that connected their work with the real-life struggles of themselves and their community, producing dynamic, multidisciplinary work that resonated through time and space.
The Nuyorican Poets Cafe is famous for its open-mic nights, which are still held each Monday and Thursday evening, where many famous writers first found their voice. Many works that debuted at the Poets Cafe have turned into successful and important shows, including Sarah Jones’s Tony Award-winning 2005 show Bridge and Tunnel, while successful writers like the Dominican American poet Elizabeth Acevedo have made their stage debut at the Cafe’s open-mic night.
Beyond cultivating an art space that encouraged expression and experimentation, the Nuyorican Poets Cafe has served as a central space for Puerto Rican culture in New York City. The Cafe’s walls are adorned with paintings depicting traditional Puerto Rican costumes and ceremonies, while Latin Jazz nights celebrate the blending of musical styles from the island nation and beyond. Any night of the week, an EVGB resident who drops by is just as likely to hear free verse in Spanish as they are a soulful rendition of a pop song or a performance of a new one-woman show.
The Nuyorican Poets Cafe is just one of the many gems that make the East Village a shining outpost of culture and art amid Manhattan’s many diverse neighborhoods. So, reach out to the sales team and check out these East Village luxury apartments for rent to start your new life today!