Arts + Culture

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Pride Guide: Open Bars, Rooftop Pool Parties, and a Madonnathon

Chalkboard outside Exit 9

Chalkboard outside Exit 9

The East Village and the Lower East Side, both rich in LGBTQ and drag history, are essential neighborhoods to party in this Gay Pride weekend (and oh, what a week it’s been), and Williamsburg has recovered enough from Brooklyn’s own celebration earlier this month to be ready for round two. Read on for our lineup of Pride picks, including a Madonna dance party, a camp-themed rave, and not one but two rooftop pool parties at the Thompson LES Hotel.
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New Gallery in Flower Shop Basement, Black Label Biker's First Solo Show

Liz Taylor: Virginia Woolf by Wayne Hollowell

Liz Taylor: Virginia Woolf by Wayne Hollowell

Tomorrow night at 365 Grand Street, a new gallery will bloom in the basement of Essex Flowers — one that harks back to the Lower East Side’s “scrappier days,” according to Gallerist. The kickoff, at 5 p.m., features the work of nine local artists in their early 30s who will curate subsequent shows at the space (which has a very minimalist website).

For more of this week’s openings and closings, see the B + B art calendar, or have a look at the highlights below.
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Staying at Miller’s Place in the Tropic of Condominiums

Introducing The 40-Year-Old Hipster. He’s returned to his stomping grounds of Williamsburg after several years away.

(Illustration: James Powers)

(Illustration: James Powers)

We’re subletting Henry Miller’s childhood crib in the burg, the wife and me. While I’ve read too much Miller (if you know his work, you’ll understand what that means) there’s something anti-Miller about this. For the record, we didn’t seek it out, it just happened to be the most economical.
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Don’t Even Think About Asking These Improv Legends to Do ‘Real Housewives’

(Photo: Facebook, Baby Wants Candy)

As mentioned in this week’s comedy roundup, the 15th annual Del Close Marathon kicks off this Friday, with 56 straight hours of improvised comedy taking place across 7 stages throughout the city, including East Village’s own UCB East theater and Theater 80 on St. Marks Place.

There’s reason to range beyond the Bedford + Bowery borders, as well: Baby Wants Candy — the long-running, Chicago-based improvised musical — is one of the most beloved institutions within the improv world and a Marathon fixture, having played over 1,700 shows worldwide.
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Bicycle Film Festival Returns to LES This Week, But May Be Brooklyn Bound

At last year's street party. (Photo: Stephen Robinson)

At last year’s street party. (Photo: Stephen Robinson)

The Bicycle Film Festival kicks off tonight with a party at Le Baron in Chinatown and continues through the weekend with dozens of screenings at Anthology Film Archives, an after-party at Lit, and, of course, the annual street party.

Despite speculation that the 13-year-old festival might move to Brooklyn, organizer Brendt Barbur decided to keep it local — for now, anyway. “This is where we were born,” he said of the East Village and Lower East Side.
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Comedy This Week: Amy Poehler Totally Wants to Tickle Your Funny Bone

Amy Poehler, Matt Walsh and Matt Besser at the Del Close Marathon (Photo: Francine Daveta)

Amy Poehler, Matt Walsh and Matt Besser at the Del Close Marathon (Photo: Francine Daveta)

This weekend marks the arrival of the 15th annual Del Close Marathon, the multi-day improv extravaganza hosted annually by the Upright Citizens Brigade Theatre, with over 420 shows on 7 stages. Expect to see UCB mainstays like Amy Poehler, Nick Kroll, Veep’s Matt Walsh, The Office’s Ellie Kemper and Zach Woods, plus a whole lot of other SNL alums, Apatow-types and familiar faces. While the main theater in Chelsea always has epic lines, there’s still plenty of fun to be had over at UCB East or on some of the smaller stages.

If you don’t feel like springing for a $30 weekend pass, tickets for some of the bigger name shows can be bought individually from the UCB website. Or, for something completely different, check out our roundup of this week’s best laugh-ins, stand-ups and make-em-ups.
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So Deck! Forget Vinyl, This Label Is Still Releasing Cassettes

Ryan Martin’s two-years-in-the-making collaboration with Italian noise composer Maurizio Bianchi, “As Strong As Death Is,” isn’t available on Spotify, or Bandcamp, or even CD. It was released today as a double cassette (yes, cassette) on his tape-centric label, Robert & Leopold.
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Is This Lena Dunham Send-Up Enough to Cure You of ‘Girls’ Withdrawl?

Did you miss “Too Many Lenas,” the loving spoof of Lena Dunham and her characters that we told you about last week? Well, then you missed two Lenas playing Chubby Bunny, a monologue rife with breakfast-themed double entendres, a human-sized cake, topless doubles ping-pong, masturbation to a Woody Allen film, and zingers like “Does curly hair make me ethnic?” But don’t worry: Bedford + Bowery has secured this clip of Sam Corbin as Self-Depicted Lena. Just a little something to tide you over until the real Lena returns to HBO.

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Learn How to Make Moonshine and Build a Treehouse at Adult Sleep-Away Camp

The first Offsite. (Photo: R.E. Jose)

The first Offsite. (Photo: R.E. Jose)

If you’ve ever found yourself at Wreck Room, feeling like it’d be nice to be surrounded by the same crowd but in considerably less stale air, then pack your bags for Offsite, a “major multi-disciplinary weekend of creative workshops and activities” — or: an adult sleep-away camp.
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Reel Psyched: Feminism, Punk Rock, Bloodshed and Free Pizza

Here’s what we’re really excited to see this week in local theaters (or, for that matter, at local bars and rooftops).

Sarah Jacobson was an independent filmmaker who believed wholeheartedly in feminism and punk rock, and fully embraced a DIY method of filmmaking. Before cancer cut her life short at age 32, she made some of the most influential underground films of the ’90s, including “I Was a Teenage Serial Killer,” “Road Movie (Or What I Learned In a Buick Station Wagon),” and a feature film, “Mary Jane’s Not a Virgin Anymore.”
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Watch This Lady Arm Wrestler Destroy Her Opponent AND a Very Large Onion

Pain (Sasha Von Oldershausen)

Pain (Sasha Von Oldershausen)

Ref and ringmaster (Sasha Von Oldershausen)

Ref and ringmaster (Sasha Von Oldershausen)

Referee (Sasha Von Oldershausen)

Referee (Sasha Von Oldershausen)

Team Sleaze (Sasha Von Oldershausen)

Team Sleaze (Sasha Von Oldershausen)

Round 2 (Sasha Von Oldershausen)

Round 2 (Sasha Von Oldershausen)

Sleaze vs. Killa Bee (Sasha Von Oldershausen)

Sleaze vs. Killa Bee (Sasha Von Oldershausen)

Taking bribes (Sasha Von Oldershausen)

Taking bribes (Sasha Von Oldershausen)

Killa Bee, victorious (Sasha Von Oldershausen)

Killa Bee, victorious (Sasha Von Oldershausen)

Recording (Sasha Von Oldershausen)

Recording (Sasha Von Oldershausen)

The raffle (Sasha Von Oldershausen)

The raffle (Sasha Von Oldershausen)

Mom Tattoo (Sasha Von Oldershausen)

Mom Tattoo (Sasha Von Oldershausen)

Vending machine (Sasha Von Oldershausen)

Vending machine (Sasha Von Oldershausen)

They’re a band of gender-bending, “gun”-toting, bona fide badasses. The women of 5 Boro Ladies Arm Wrestling gathered Saturday at 3rd Ward for their fifth brawl since the all-female group emerged in 2011.
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At Northside Festival, Wondering ‘What’s Next’ For Brooklyn

A golden light on Solange and her fans (Photos: Joshua Kristal)

A golden light on Solange and her fans (Photos: Joshua Kristal)

EDIT_NorthEndFestival_BLOG_020

EDIT_NorthEndFestival_BLOG_020

Nice skirt! (Photo: Joshua Kristal)

Dancing to Petit Noir, opener for Solange.

Dancing to Petit Noir, opener for Solange.

Fashion students Franki Phil-Ebosie and Jackie Martell at King & Grovel.

Fashion students Franki Phil-Ebosie and Jackie Martell at King & Grovel.

Besties taking selfies.

Besties taking selfies.

At the Solange concert at McCarren.

At the Solange concert at McCarren.

The crowd at South African band Petit Noir.

The crowd at South African band Petit Noir.

The Solange rooftop pre-party had Williamsburg fronting as Miami.

The Solange rooftop pre-party had Williamsburg fronting as Miami.

The Maker Twins used wheels to create electronic dub music.

The Maker Twins used wheels to create electronic dub music.

A Red Bull team confers among mountains of electronic detritus.

A Red Bull team confers among mountains of electronic detritus.

The Red Bull team from Detroit used hose spun on drills to create music.

The Red Bull team from Detroit used hose spun on drills to create music.

The Maker Twins installation was popular with the kids.

The Maker Twins installation was popular with the kids.

The Teenagers, one of the 300 bands to play at Northside.

The Teenagers, one of the 300 bands to play at Northside.

Last week, after Petit Noir’s performance during the Northside Festival, Scott Stedman was lounging poolside at Williamsburg’s King & Grove hotel. Tanned, oiled legs circled the deck. Waiters brought menus to the white-cloth umbrella tables.

“In many ways, the essential player for our entire festival is the geography and psycho-geography of Williamsburg and Greenpoint,” he said.

By psycho-geography, he meant that Williamsburg is no longer just a place — it’s a brand. And it’s safe to say Stedman’s Northside Media Group — which owns L Magazine and Brooklyn Magazine, and produces the Northside Festival — has had a lot to do with that. “The entire goal of our company is to define and showcase Brooklyn as a national adjective for ‘what’s next’ through media and large scale events like the Northside Festival,” he said.
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