What exactly is an expedition, who goes on them, and why? That’s what curators Shona Kitchen, Aly Ogasian, and Jennifer Dalton Vincent set out to explore in Setting Out, their exhibition of expeditions (say that five times fast) large and small, real and imagined.
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An Audience With Molly Pope At Joe’s Pub, 425 Lafayette St., East Village; 9:30pm (also at 7pm on 1/27). Tickets are $20 and can be purchased here.
“Neo-retro” cabaret artist Molly Pope has performed many times all over the city and garnered much praise along the way, but this time she’s doing a little something more: recording her first album. Of course, that’s also happening in front of a live audience, led by a six-piece band. And don’t worry, there will be a sing-along, and audience members who partake will in fact be credited as back-up artists on the album. It’s your chance to be a star!
If you’ve ever even considered seeing a comedy show at venues like Muchmore’s, Over the Eight, or the Annoyance, chances are you’ve seen Mary Houlihan up to something there. I met Mary while we were both performing at a variety show in Bushwick. Since then, we haven’t been much more than Facebook acquaintances, but I started seeing her name practically everywhere as a part of all sorts of silly and fun-sounding shows. Even her Facebook presence reflects a lighthearted and delightfully cartoonish proclivity. When I heard that she was doing her own one-woman show, Live ’N’ Good, for a second time, I knew I wanted to see what was going on in that head of hers. So, we met up for pizza in Williamsburg and got to chattin’.
Though it’s easy to get distressed about how white and male-dominated the artistic landscape still is today (because it really, truly is), it’s important to acknowledge and seek out the exciting and prevalent work being made by artists of color in spaces that are perhaps not as commercial as, say, network television. Some of it has been in comedy: recently, we’ve written about black comedian and activist Elsa Waithe and an all-Muslim comedy showcase.
Ever find yourself wondering about Satan, or listening to music that mothers would pale to hear? Banish those devilish desires of yours with a trip to everyone’s favorite Bushwick-based occult bookstore and event space, Catland, to take in the Satanic Panic Propaganda Video Show, a compilation of short videos showcasing the moral panic of the ’80s and ’90s centering around the potentially violent dangers of Satanic rituals and cults.
While you still have a staggering amount of Manhattan performance festival shows going on this week, don’t be afraid to take a break from sifting through show schedules in order to check out some of these other options.
This week and next: more performance festivals than you ever knew could happen at the same time. And plenty more to choose from.
FESTIVALSPS122’s COIL Festival
Through Jan. 17, various times and various venues. Full programming, schedule, and tickets here. They may not have moved into their renovated East Village space yet, but that’s not stopping Performance Space 122 from presenting their contribution to APAP, the COIL Festival. Exploring the theme of transformation, they’ve hunkered down in venues all over, including La MaMa and Paradise Factory in the East Village and New Ohio Theater in the West Village. Offerings include Annie Dorsen’s live musical piece utilizing algorithms to slowly transform The Beatles’s Yesterday into Tomorrow (from the musical Annie) and Frank Boyd and the TEAM’s one-man live jazz radio show.
If you’ve decided that Stairwell Theater’s scatological Ubu Rex seems a little too extreme for you, there’s no shortage of oddball performance events around every corner this week. But sorry to all you straight-laced folk out there, none of them are particularly traditional.
Would you rather spend a short evening watching stuff in a bar or dedicate your whole day to the wildest and most visceral of performance art? This week, you can do both.
Where The Wild Things Are 8
At Bizarre Bushwick, 12 Jefferson Street, Bushwick. 9pm; $7-20 suggested donation. More info here.
Party moguls Brooklyn Wildlife present the eighth edition of their evening variety show at Bizarre Bar, home to all shapes and sizes of variety show. At any given moment, you can catch “aggro” raps by Stonehenge Parnhashnakovsky, beats by Star Falcon and Rob Interface, performance art poetry by Terminal Intrusion (Nyssa Frank, owner of The Living Gallery), burlesque, and more. The event asks attendees to wear a costume from a childhood story, a mascot outfit, or just to come half naked. So, suit up. Or down.
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This Friday, among the plethora of white-gallery shows opening in Lower Manhattan, an old metal shop originally meant for rolling noodles will creak to life on Ludlow Street once more. Only this time, instead of noodles, there will be painstakingly crafted patterns, lines, vectors, and collages.
Yes, this odd little space will be the location for Obsessive Tendencies, a exhibition of new graphic design work by multidisciplinary designers Claudine Eriksson, Andrea Johansson, and Darcy Moore. The opening reception will also act as a launch event for the trio’s new collective, 3xStudio. It will be hosted by Solie, singer and curator of Den Entertainment, who is also assisting the collective in producing the show. True to the “3” in the collective’s name, they will be showing three works each.
Tonight, a unique production of Shakespeare’s Macbeth opens in Williamsburg. Where’s the theater, you ask? Nowhere to be found, actually: This production will be taking place inside of a distillery. The three-year-old New York Distilling Company will act as the stage for this re-imagined play, which features an original live musical score and physically-charged action that happens all around the audience. Of course, an open bar of custom Macbeth-themed cocktails will be served at the adjoining bar, The Shanty— reportedly home to one of the city’s “booziest cocktails.”
It’s December. Instead of thinking about how time is quickly passing you by, take a pause from reality and step into one of the many intriguing performances available this week. Some of them are even free.