The Wacky and Wonderful Dina Martina Gives Her Five Reasons To Love New York

I'm a little bit crazy-in-love with Miss Dina Martina, the Seattle-based cabaret performer known for her cuckoo-crazily off-beat singing, dancing and storytelling. Dina, often costumed in a many-sizes-too-small sequined ensemble and in need of some manscaping, loves to stop the show to shower members of the audience with gifts like Cheetos-flavored lip balm and books like Daddy Is in Prison. Dina is coming back to the Naked City this month to spread some holiday cheer with her new show Dina Martina: An Early Hoarfrost at the Laurie Beecham Theater where she'll no doubt sing her old chestnuts like Tracy Chapman's "Fast Sleigh" and Rick Springfield's "Jesus' Girl."

We took the opportunity to ask Dina to tell us her five favorite things about New York City:

1. DIVERSITY! On any given night, my audience might be comprised of industry suits, network brass, gay newlyweds, straight-curious divorcees, giggling Japanese prostitutes, gang members coasting on their street cred, elderly peeps on work release and jaundiced preemies. What a salad!
2. CULTURE! As everyone knows, art is just so neat -- except for some of it -- and there are more art galleries in New York than you can shake a thing at. I want to get one of those prints with the couple dancing on the beach while the butler and maid hold umbrellas over them. Who doesn't want a life like that?
3. CUISINE! From halibut cheeks to chicken tartare, New York has just what you're hankering to fill your cranny. When dining on the town, I usually start out with heavy fare like lamb & hollandaise or meatloaf & butter and then, to make room for dessert, I put on bigger clothes.
4. NATURAL BEAUTY! Active or sedentary, if you love communing with flora and fauna as I do, then Manhattan's ample decolletage of natural beauty will keep you busy 24/7/365. There's adventure around every corner, whether you're hiking to the summit of Murray Hill, water-skiing on the Hudson or spelunking in the manholes of Chelsea. 
5. ALL-AROUND CONVENIENCE! New York has anything you could want within arm's reach. The other day I was in a bind and really needed some scaffolding...well, much to my delight, I discovered that New York has TONS of scaffolding that no one's using! I also love that every neighborhood's got that whole "world-class banana stand/poop smell/inexpensive umbrella" thing going on.
Dina Martina: An Early Hoarfrost, Nov. 27, 28 & 29 at the Laurie Beecham Theater, 407 W. 42nd St. Buy tickets here. Photograph by David Belisle.

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