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The Exponential Underground Theatre Festival

(Flyer via The Exponential Festival)

(Flyer via The Exponential Festival)

January is theatre-fest time: there’s the always exciting COIL fest, Under the Radar at the Public Theater, and the opera-centric summit Prototype. But Theresa Buchheister– a founding member of Title:Point, the DIY production company that runs Vital Joint at the Silent Barn– thought it was the perfect opportunity to introduce her own operation into the mix, The Exponential Festival, as a counterpoint to the usual.

Read more here.


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Theater: The Great Christmas Mindfuck

A bevy of Brooklyn’s wildest comedians and wackiest performers come together for this six hour long (yes, you read that right) marathon of holiday madness. One of the brains behind this ambitious endeavor is, unsurprisingly, Jo Firestone, creator of Punderdome 3000, director of B+B favorite Body, and too many other creative and just plain bizarre shows to mention here. The lineup is rightfully jam-packed, and we trust that it will be full to the brim with surprises, shocks, and sillies.

Read more here.

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Ubu Rex Immersive Theatre

via Sam Gibbs

via Sam Gibbs

Tis the season for Macbeth, y’all. Get your Macbeth hair of the dog and head to a psycho-sexual parody of the play (because everyone knows the best cure for a hangover is…) perhaps even more transgressive than that $100 plus tourist trap. This weekend, Stairwell Theater is staging Ubu Rex, an immersive evening of debauchery and cabaret based on the 19th-century play Ubu Roi, at Aviv, and you’re invited to partake in the revelry and grime at a “post-apocalyptic dinner party.”

Get discounted tickets when you buy in advance.

Read more here.

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Single, Broke and Pregnant: One Artist’s Quest For Motherhood

Staceyann Chin on the set of Motherstruck! Photo: Timmy Blupe

Staceyann Chin on the set of Motherstruck! (Photo: Timmy Blupe)

Growing up in Kingston, Jamaica, the poet Staceyann Chin spent her teenage years terrified of getting pregnant. “Every Bible lesson, biology lesson, and casual reference to the future was marked with the warning: if you get pregnant, your life is over,” she wrote later.

When Chin began dating women, she was relieved, thinking that this panic would no longer be a part of her life. But at 35, after yet another debilitating breakup, Chin woke up from her solitary life in a one-bedroom apartment in Brooklyn, haunted by a wholly different inconvenient truth: despite the fact that she had no partner, no stable income and no medical benefits, she wanted to have a baby.

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Performance Picks: Tarot Card Donner Party, New Play Readings, and More

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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.

WEDNESDAY

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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Tonight: Get Doused at this Whiskey-Filled Macbeth Inside a Distillery

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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.”

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Performance Picks: Parental Comedy, Suburban Theater, Radical Vaudeville

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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.

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Gaby Hoffmann, Jennifer Tilly And More Perform 100 Monologues To Benefit PS122

(photo: Maria Baranova)

Eric Bogosian (photo: Maria Baranova)

Not all fancy benefit performances open with a casually-dressed Eric Bogosian nursing a Brooklyn Lager and proclaiming in a deep drawl to the cocktail-clutching audience, “I’ve got a long, thick, well-shaped prick,” but Performance Space 122 isn’t your typical theater.

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Performance Picks: Tween Twins, Social Media Scripting, And A Helping Of Violence

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As it turns out, most of this week’s performances to catch are in Williamsburg. Maybe there’s hope for culture there after all… Aside from The Bedford Stop, of course.
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Tonight: A DIY Riff On Shakespeare That’s Been ‘Grappling With Issues of Blackface’

(photo: Mark Gowers)

(photo: Mark Gowers)

It’s raining when I head to Greenpoint to meet writer Sean Edward Lewis and actress Claire Campbell, theater artists making experimental work under the name Lilac Co. They’re a unique pair, reminiscent of the muse and the artist: Campbell, fresh-faced and young, is from Brighton, England (“Lots of hippie mums by the sea”), fresh out of drama school overseas. Lewis, older and gruffer, grew up north of Los Angeles in Ventura County, attended CalArts for graduate school, and has been in New York writing and showing his own experimental work as an auteur of sorts for ten years now.

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Performance Picks: Queer Comedy, Cryptic Spooks, A Live Movie Musical

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.

WEDNESDAY

esoterica

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.

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