Make America Gay Again
Wednesday, January 18 at Ars Nova, 8 pm: $15
By now, the phrase Make America Great Again pretty much seems like old hat. Which is also a pun I didn’t mean to make, but there it is. Tonight, performance artist Chris Tyler hopes to put his own ribald spin on MAGA with this spangled variety show, claiming while that America has never been particularly great or even particularly good, it has indeed been “more than a little bit gay.” Republicans are welcome to this affair, though it’s unclear what their fate shall be when they arrive. The lineup includes “drag queens, poets, and punk musicians” such as performance artist Emily Oliveira, drag queen Kelsey, local rockers Gandor Chorale, Pussy Grabs Back: The Band, writer Jess Goldschmidt, and more. Advance tickets are sold out, but a waitlist begins at the theater at 7:30.
What A Joke Festival
January 19-21 at various locations and times: $15-40
Speaking of old hat, this nationwide comedy festival has its own red baseball cap, only it’s a lot less optimistic than what old Donald’s spouting. Yes, you can get your very own red cap sporting the phrase “WHAT A JOKE” so you can air your feelings about the state of the world without having to open your mouth. If headwear isn’t your thing, consider the comedy fest itself: the NYC chapter will be doing 3 shows in 3 days at The Stand, The Annoyance, and Rough Trade. The cheapest show ($15) is already sold out, but the other two are ripe for the buyin’. Each show features a slew of some of the city’s most delightful funny folk (such as Janeane Garofalo, Nikki Glaser, Dave Hill, and more), and not only that, but money made from the festival will go to the ACLU. If all you can do at this point is laugh, you might as well laugh for a good cause.
Thursday, January 19 at various locations, 5:30 pm: FREE
This isn’t a performance per se, but an organized gathering of theaters and theater artists nationwide on January 19 at 5:30 pm. People will gather outside their theater of choice, whether they are directly involved with it or not, as a symbol of community and solidarity and to act as a “light for the dark times ahead.” It may seem fruitless to merely be gathering at this point in time, but sometimes all you can do is stand with each other as a reminder that despite who’s in charge, there are plenty of people around you willing to welcome you and fight for you. Participants nearby include The Public Theater, BAM, Fourth Arts Block, Abrons Arts Center, and The Bushwick Starr.
Queer Abstract: What Gets You Free
Friday, January 20 at Starr Bar, 9 pm: FREE
On the dreaded day that the “Elect” in “President-Elect” becomes no longer, recover from your time spent either staring at or avoiding a bunch of old white people who don’t know what they’re doing by attending this late-night performance event featuring queer, trans, and POC performers. AKA: hopefully our future. A new monthly series at Mayday Space’s Starr Bar curated and hosted by Shannon Matesky, Queer Abstract showcases performers of all sorts, followed by a dance party after the show. This month includes comedian Joel Kim Booster (Conan), dancer Nicole Shante, poet Jayson P Smith, musician Jeannine Kayembe, and many more.