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Performance Picks: Comedy, New Theater, and Reverend Billy on Sunday


(image via NYTW / Facebook)

Slave Play
Now through December 30 at New York Theater Workshop, 7 pm (some shows at 8 pm or 2 pm): $29

In a recent interview with Out magazine, playwright Jeremy O. Harris says he explains Slave Play, his new play at New York Theater Workshop, to prospective audiences as such: “It’s a slave play; there’s a history of them; go see mine.” If that sounds vague, it’s meant to be; he notes that audiences will experience the play best when they go in knowing as little as possible. What you can know is that Harris has been gaining traction and acclaim over the past few years for his work, which presents a refreshingly and unapologetically queer, black addition to the theatrical canon, which has a long history of being (and remaining) quite the opposite of that.  Keep Reading »

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Yoga-Boxing Entrepreneur Olivia Young Brings Out Her Yin-Yang With an Expanded Studio

Olivia Young (Photo courtesy of Box + Flow)

It’s November 1, the two-year anniversary of box + flow, and 32-year old founder Olivia Young is feeling reflective. “I woke up from a nightmare this morning,” she says. “I was crying right before you got here.”

Young is unapologetically herself, and is arrestingly honest. She’s the kind of person you trust immediately. She hands me a beer from the mini-fridge beside her desk, and we cheers to the second anniversary of box + flow and to my own personal growth, in a disclosure I will share with her but not with the internet. Keep Reading »

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Art This Week: A Stonewall Veteran, Violent Clothing, and More

Thomas Lanigan Schmidt. Lollipop Knick Knack (Let’s Talk About You), c. 1968-69. Foil, printed material, linoleum, glitter, staples, Magic marker, found objects and other media

Tenemental (With Sighs Too Deep For Words)
Opening Friday, November 16 at HOWL! Happening, 6 pm to 9 pm. On view through December 19.

The year 2019 (which isn’t too far away) will mark the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall riots, a pivotal and much-debated moment in LGBTQ history. While 50 years is a fairly long time ago, some people who were present on that fateful day are still alive and kicking today, including the artist Thomas Lanigan-Schmidt, who will be exhibiting a collection of art and ephemera at HOWL! Happening right before Stonewall’s 50th. Lanigan-Schmidt’s work is kitschy and eye-catching, using common-yet-ostentatious materials like foil, glitter, and colorful plastic wrap. Broken down into individual parts, his materials may appear to some as trash, but assembled into these creations they take on a new, queer life full of promise. Keep Reading »

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Weekend Art Openings: African Masks, Tiny Sculptures, and The Apocalypse

(image courtesy of Salon 94 Bowery)

Flash of the Spirit
Opening Friday, November 9 at Salon Bowery 94, 6 pm to 8 pm. On view through December 21.

Lyle Ashton Harris’s photos, on view at Salon 94 Bowery starting this Friday, contain much colorful, vivid imagery, but few human faces. Instead, the faces in the bodies he captures are covered by elaborate, striking masks sourced from a variety of places, including several African masks from his uncle’s collection. These images are actually self-portraits, but you might not know it. And that’s kind of the point: throughout history, people putting on masks has been equated with them transforming into someone (or something) else, whether that be an improved version of oneself or a way to avoid accountability. Harris has been making work dealing with queerness, Blackness, and the self in the context of diaspora for decades, and this is a chance to see what he’s up to now. Keep Reading »

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‘Democracy Dies in Dampness’: Massive Lines, Broken Scanners, Epic Waits to Vote in Soggy NYC

(Photo via @dagesjuvelierkeates on Instagram)

If you thought the line for a last-minute Halloween costume was as bad as it got, you may have learned otherwise when you headed to the polls this morning. As if the soggy weather wasn’t bad enough, New Yorkers reported downed scanners and waits of up to four hours. (Gonna need those free drinks!) Even Mayor de Blasio had to wait in line; he emerged from his Brooklyn polling location calling for voting reform and saying “NYC deserves so much better.” The state Attorney General’s office announced that as of 3:30pm, it had received roughly 100 complaints about New York City poll sites with broken scanners. Here’s a look at this morning’s carnage in the B+B area.

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Run-D.M.C. Mural Goes Up in the East Village, 16 Years After Jam Master Jay’s Death

Photo via monkeysees_bk on Instagram

You may not get a chance to see Josh Cheuse’s classic shots of Run-D.M.C., currently on display in a Greenwich Village shoe shop, but it’d be hard to miss this. The Queens hip-hop legends are the subject of a massive new mural by Eduardo Kobra, the Brazilian artist who gifted the East Village an epic portrait of Michael Jackson back in July. This one has been going up at the corner of 12th and A, exactly 16 years after Jam Master Jay was gunned down in a recording studio in Jamaica, Queens.

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Don’t Waffle, Go Eat Some Insects For Free On the Streets of NYC

(Photos: Daniel Maurer)

Insects, here! Get your fresh roasted insects, here!

No, it’s not a Beetlejuice-themed Halloween stunt, it’s a marketing campaign for The Economist. The magazine, which has given out free coffee and vegan burgers in the past, has teamed up with Belgian waffle wizards Wafels & Dinges to launch a food truck offering free mini liege waffles topped with roasted crickets and mealworms.

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Neighborhood Longtimers Anella and Nai Reopen in Greenpoint and EV

(Photo courtesy of Nai)

Two neighborhood standbys have reopened their doors–one in Brooklyn, the other in Manhattan. Nai, the Galician tapas bar that closed in July after eight years in the East Village, has reopened an avenue over. And Anella, the Greenpoint longtimer that closed that same month due to a fire, will reopen tonight in a rebuilt space.

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Sidewalk Bookseller Jen Fisher Knows All Your Secrets

Introducing Book Hawks, in which we meet the sidewalk booksellers who brave the elements to bring you good reads.

Jen Fisher. (Photo: Naryan Sawyers)

Jen Fisher sells books, which she unpacks from the trunk of her car each day, on the corner of Avenue A and St. Marks Place. Our conversation was punctuated by her exchanges with friends and neighbors as they passed.

How’d you start selling books?

I started selling books five years ago, because I really love people and books and I want to share it with people. Books are very complicated, and they bring a lot of complication and beauty out of people.

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Trash Can PSA Tells Trumpers Where They Can Go

(Photo: Daniel Maurer)

Talk about trashing your opponent.

Someone plastered this fake sanitation department PSA on a garbage bin at East 9th Street and Avenue A. (DSNY has confirmed their logo was used without permission.) Where there’d otherwise be a “LET’S MAKE NYC CLEAN AND RAT FREE” poster, there’s now this image of a Trump supporter who clearly doesn’t mind Chick-fil-A’s “creepy infiltration of New York City.” We reached out to Hanksy, of “Dump Trump” fame, but he said this one wasn’t his. If anyone knows who’s responsible, get in touch.

Update, 5:30pm: Looks like this is the work of Winston Tseng, the graphic designer and art director who previously gained attention with his Trump alphabet cards as well as fake ads for Hannity and a Yeezy x MAGA 2020 collab. Earlier this year he received a cease and desist after putting up a “Your Train Is Delayed” poster in the Bleecker Street subway station. Around the time this post was published, he Instagrammed three photos of “Keep NYC Trash Free” posters at other locations.