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.
This week, you can eat turkey and see shows. I guess you could do that any week, but it’ll feel more significant now.
This week, you can traipse over to Williamsburg and become part of a theatrical diamond heist, hole up with some strangers (and their holes) in a live version of a sexy UCB podcast, observe a lecture on hallucinations… The possibilities are endless.
This week, whether you want to be entrenched in the Halloween spirit or just want to watch some good old fashioned people telling jokes, you can slide on over to one of these shows to get your fill.
Esoterica Teaser Performance
At Visana NYC, 321 1st Avenue, East Village. 11:30 doors, midnight performance; free. More info here.
There isn’t much info available on this late-night performance preview at a speakeasy—it appears to be purposefully cryptic—but Esoterica’s website indicates it’s a richly-visual performance experience based to some degree on Dante’s Divine Comedy, where heaven and hell intermingle. “A portal to The Inferno will be opened,” the Facebook event declares. Well, you’ll just have to see for yourself.
Several free festivals and absurd doses of comedy await you this week. Read on to get the scoop.
The Terrible Them
at The Experiment Comedy Gallery, 20 Broadway, Williamsburg. 8pm. More info here.
The Experiment Comedy Gallery, a newly opened waterfront space for offbeat comedy, brings this one-night-only play (previously seen at The Creek and The Cave in 2014) by Gonzalo Cordova and Nick Naney, inspired by the dramatic sci-fi horror of filmmaker John Carpenter. Created and performed by comedians but billed as theater in a satisfying collision of artistic disciplines, The Terrible Them tells the tale of a disgraced journalist who gets the chance to revitalize his career in the midst of an alien invasion. Featuring a large cast of funny folk, visual effects and an “original synth soundtrack” by Steven DeSiena.
Get off at the Bedford L. Walk ten or so minutes into Greenpoint. Pass the house with the eerily-lit windows, but don’t forget it. You’ll be getting to know it quite well later. Turn the corner and enter the old church. This is where your journey begins.
A little past 8pm, the band atop the Wild Project’s bare stage begins to play an opening jaunt by Zoe Sarnak, part of a genre-bending new generation of musical theater writers, and Shakina Nayfack steps onstage to sing about her Brand New Pussy. “She’s made for lovin’ and breakin’ hearts,” Shakina proclaims fiercely.
This week, catch some clowning, site-specific apartment theater, and more vaudeville than you probably knew existed.
The Folk Circus Presents: A Valley Son
at Bizarre Bushwick, 12 Jefferson Street, Bushwick. 9pm; $7-20 suggested donation. More info here.
Concept album plus circus freaks equals a devilishly good way to spend a Thursday night. The Folk Circus takes an album by a local band and puts their unique twist on it at aptly-named haven for offbeat performance and parties, Bizarre Bushwick. This time they’re taking on music by chill NY-based rockers A Valley Son. Expect aerial routines, fire-breathers, burlesque, clown, dance, music, and anything unexpected.
Whether you’re craving a futuristic folk-rock-et-cetera musical, some cartoonish comedy, or an entire three-day performance festival, there is something here for you.
October 7-9 at the Martin E. Segal Center, The CUNY Graduate Center, Murray Hill. Various times; all events free. Full schedule here.
Downtown-style performance art saunters uptown a bit for the 12th annual Prelude Festival. Spanning three days, Prelude celebrates exciting and zany performance and multidisciplinary artists who are making work today. Come get immersed in the world of the theatrical with installations, panel discussions, and performances from notable artists like high-belting queerdo Erin Markey, site-specific pioneers En Garde Arts, and Obie-winning experimental playwright Mac Wellman. Attendees will be transported via party buses to the closing party Friday night at PioneerWorks in Red Hook. Best of all, it’s free.
Prelude 2015 is curated by Antje Oegel and Tom Sellar.