Jon Stewart, Jesus Christ Superstar, Orchid Walls: NYC Weekend

"Gertrude Stein" by Pablo Picasso. A new show at the Metropolitan Museum of Art assembles 200 works to show the Steins' influence on art. Source: Metropolitan Museum of Art via Bloomberg

It’s the show people love to hate: the Whitney Museum has gathered 51 artists for its 76th Biennial. Some are just ghastly, but that’s expected of course. (See our review by Lance Esplund).

Others entertain. Look for the bright cartoonish paintings of Nicole Eisenman, Sam Lewitt’s spinning spheres and Werner Herzog’s installation “Hearsay of the Soul.”

The second floor is devoted to film and video, while the fourth floor has been transformed into a performance space for dance, theater and experimental music.

Sarah Michelson and Michael Clark are in residence at various times.

At Danny Meyer’s Untitled restaurant downstairs, have a Bloody Mary and a pimento cheeseburger on pumpernickel.

“Whitney Biennial 2012” runs through May 27 at 945 Madison Ave. Information: +1-212-570-3600;

Saturday Matinee

“Jesus Christ Superstar” dramatizes the arrival in Jerusalem, the dark night of the soul, the betrayal and crucifixion -- all in a rock opera.

Written 40 years ago by Andrew Lloyd Webber, with lyrics by Tim Rice, the revival was directed by Des McAnuff (“Jersey Boys”) for the Stratford Shakespeare Festival, where it was a great hit.

In previews at the Neil Simon Theatre, 250 W. 52nd St. for a March 22 opening. Information: +1-757-8646;

Saturday Mass

For a spiritual experience of a different sort, head to the Church of Saint Mary the Virgin, affectionately known as Smoky Mary, to hear Bach’s “Mass in B Minor” sung by the Dessoff Choirs.

Conducted by Christopher Shepard, the group is accompanied by period instrument specialists the Arcadia Players. Soloists include Susan Consoli and Matthew Anderson.

It’s part of the group’s “Refracted Bach” series.

At 145 W. 46th St. Information: +1-212-831-8224;

Saturday Evening

The Vienna Philharmonic is in town with Lorin Maazel at the helm.

Tonight hear the women-phobic band play some Mozart and Wagner, while Sunday brings music by Richard Strauss, and will also fulfill your lust for waltzes.

At Carnegie Hall, 57th Street and 7th Avenue. Information: +1-212-247-7800;

Two-step the night away with Grammy nominee Pat Green. He plays a show with three other country bands: Eli Young, Randy Rogers, and Josh Abbott.

As a salute to Texas Independence Day you’ll get a free drink for wearing a Lone Star State college logo.

At Terminal 5, 610 W. 56th St., from 7 p.m. Information: +1-212-582-6600;


Get seduced by some spectacular blooms at this year’s Orchid Show at the New York Botanical Garden.

Growing all over the world, orchids are an adaptable plant producing a dazzling array of flowers.

French botanist Patrick Blanc created the green wall, a sustainable wire, felt, water and plant structure. The orchids are displayed in his vertical gardens.

Take home an exotic bloom -- experts will be on hand between 1:30-4:30 p.m. to help you choose the right plant.

At 2900 Southern Boulevard, Bronx. Information: +1-718-817-8700;

Sunday Afternoon

You’ve seen Picasso’s famous portrait of Gertrude Stein at the Metropolitan Museum of Art -- bequeathed by Stein, it was the first Picasso in the museum’s collection.

During the early 1900s, she and her brothers were important patrons and collectors in Paris, buying up work by the Spanish artist as well as Matisse, Cezanne, Degas, Gauguin, Manet and others.

For “The Steins Collect,” the Met has put together 200 works to show the evolution of their taste and their impact on modern art.

Runs through June 3 at 1000 Fifth Ave. Information: +1-212-535-7710;

Sunday Evening

For the first time Amnesty International’s Secret Policeman’s Ball comes to Radio City Music Hall.

Headliners so far include Jon Stewart, Stephen Colbert, Coldplay and Russell Brand, and many more will likely make an appearance.

Since its 1976 launch in London, the Ball has been raising money for Amnesty International, which is celebrating its 50th anniversary as the guardian angel of human rights.

At 1260 Avenue of the Americas. Information: +1-212-465-6225;

(Zinta Lundborg is an editor for Muse, the arts and leisure section of Bloomberg News. The opinions expressed are her own.)

Before it's here, it's on the Bloomberg Terminal. LEARN MORE