National Sawdust

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Sasha Velour on 4/20, The Postmen Move to Bushwick, and More Performance Picks

THURSDAY

(image via Sasha Velour / Facebook)

Sasha Velour’s Nightgowns
Thursday, April 20 at National Sawdust, 8:30 pm doors, 10 pm show: $18 advance, $22 doors

If you live in Brooklyn and are watching this season of RuPaul’s Drag Race, there’s probably a pretty good chance you’re only a degree or two of separation from some of the queens competing. One of these hometown heroes is Sasha Velour, who has continued to host the unique drag variety show Nightgowns on a regular basis. The show is typically at Bizarre Bushwick, but is making the move to dear old Williamsburg and its funky, classy music hall National Sawdust.

Given that they’re moving to a bigger, swankier space, the lineup is pretty big too. You can see shows after fabulous show from Francesca, Hystée Lauder, Kandy Muse, Olive d’Nightlife, Pearl Harbor, Severely Mame, Scarlet Envy, Untitled Queen, and Vigor Mortis. And hey, it’s 4/20, so there’ll probably be some sort of relevant performance themes going on. Keep Reading »

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You Look Like You Need This: Free Drinks, PR, and More ‘in the Wake of This Horrible Election’

National Sawdust (photo: Nicole Disser)

Last night I was at Gowanus venue Littlefield for Election Night Live, a performance event put on by political musical comedy group Political Subversities. The packed house was high-energy and receptive as they watched sharply-crafted musical numbers and sketches about voting, Michelle Obama, phone banking, lesbian feminists, and loving Hillary Clinton “more than I love my labia.” Interspersed throughout were stand-up sets by folks like Reductress associate editor Nicole Silverberg and comedian Aparna Nancherla, mind-reading magic by Vinny DePonto, and others. Pantsuits and political attire were plentiful, and spirits seemed high, if not a bit frantic and anxious.

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South By South Death is the Music-Festival Slasher Musical You Didn’t Know You Needed

(image via National Sawdust)

(image via National Sawdust)

America is replete with music festivals (especially this summer, New York). There are so many it could make your head spin, causing you to momentarily lose sanity and fall into a killing spree.

That’s not exactly what happens in Jared Saltiel and Toby Singer‘s new musical South By South Death, but it’s close—the show is about a group of friends who head south to attend the infamous “Didgeridoo Music Festival,” conveniently set on a remote island. At the festival, pop star “Ciley Myrus” is headlining, but there’s something darker afoot. Someone in a Myrus mask begins killing everyone and documenting the carnage. Through selfies, of course. As more and more people die, there’s another disaster looming, this one of the natural variety: Hurricane Beyoncé.

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Catch France’s Crème de la Crème (For Free!) at the France Rocks Summerfest

Israeli-French singer/songwriter Yael Naim. (Photo courtesy FranceRocks)

Israeli-French singer/songwriter Yael Naim. (Photo courtesy France Rocks)

Voilà! The inaugural France Rocks Summerfest or should we say, France Des Roches Fest D’été (no, no we shouldn’t) kicked off Memorial Monday with a performance by “guitar orchestra” composer Rhys Chatham, and continues on June 3 with a performance at Le Poisson Rouge by French pianist and composer Maxence Cyrin (known for his solo piano covers; check out his 2009 cover of “Where Is My Mind” by The Pixies). The seven-week showcase of French music will include more than 30 musical acts performing a range of indie rock, pop, electronica, jazz and world rhythms at more than 25 venues across Manhattan, Brooklyn and the Bronx.

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Music: New Venue National Sawdust’s First Show, Tanya Tagaq

animism

Are you familiar with Inuit throat singing? Well, I mean have you really heard it? Like most people living this far south of permafrost, I’ve only heard my friends drunkenly imitate Inuit throat singing as a way of satirizing cultural appropriation and haven’t actually, really experienced the real-real deal IRL. Well, here’s my (and your) chance to hear this powerful, guttural form of music as performed by Tanya Tagaq (who you might have first been introduced to via her New Yorker cartoon likeness). Also, this is the first regular show happening at Williamsburg’s brand new venue, National Sawdust, so best a time as any to check it out.

Read more about National Stardust here.

 

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Inside Williamsburg’s Ambitious New-Music Venue, National Sawdust

(Photo: Nicole Disser)

(Photo: Nicole Disser)

In many ways, Williamsburg’s newest venue couldn’t be more different from the (mostly) defunct DIY show spaces (bar/art-galleries and dingy old warehouses) that once lined the waterfront area. (Cameo, at least, is still here — for another month and a half, anyway). That’s because National Sawdust is a refined concert hall, a serious non-profit institution with powerful and moneyed supporters plus a leadership of established talent tapped directly from the music and art worlds.

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