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Performance Picks: A Capella Horror, Comedians Dancing, and More

THURSDAY

(image via PrismHouse Theater Company / Facebook)

Ablaze: an A Capella Musical Thriller
August 22-24 at New Ohio Theater, 7:30 pm (Sunday shows at 2 pm and 8 pm): $20

Traditionally, the only music associated with the horror or thriller genres (well, aside from the actual song Thriller) is ominous background noise, or instrumental tracks featuring a lot of minor keys, creepy strings, and other such sounds. A cappella singing usually isn’t involved, or even considered. However, in Ablaze, a new musical thriller from Prism House Theater Company, it stands proudly front and center. Yes, this is an a cappella thriller musical, and it’s about a group of teens who survive a fire only to find themselves stuck in a secluded basement with a mysterious presence. What else to do but sing about it? 

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Art This Week: Morph Suits and Sex Workers

(image via @the.olympia.project / Instagram)

Orchid.Summer
Opening Wednesday, August 21 at The Olympia Project, 6 pm. On view through September 12.

When you think of art having to do with particular colors and seasons, you might think of formal pieces of fine art depicting sunsets and foliage and other such subjects. Matthew Morrocco’s work, on view at The Olympia Project in Williamsburg, does in fact dabble in such imagery, but that’s not all. The star, appearing in front (and sometimes lurking in the background) of sun-dappled beaches and parks, is a person wearing a bright yellow morph suit (remember those?). Faceless and monochrome but more fun than creepy-looking, this figure injects a certain surreality to otherwise fairly standard photographic scenes. It makes one wonder how classic still lives and landscapes might look with this mustard-tinged individual added to the mix. More →

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East Village Queer Film Festival Packs House, Pulls Heartstrings

Opening-night host Cecilia Gentili. (Photos: Mycah Hazel)

The East Village Queer Film Festival brought rebellious sons and snappy elders to the big screen for a packed opening on Monday night. Hosted by mixed-arts space the Wild Project, the weeklong festival features an array of short and full-length films, webisodes and music videos all focused on LGBTQ+ experiences.   More →

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Eileen Myles Made a Road-Trip Film Driven By Poetry, Politics, and Puppetry.

Eileen Myles in The Trip.

When I first read Eileen Myles’s 1994 classic Chelsea Girls, I was certain it was nonfiction. I think I may have told an inquiring stranger on the subway that it was a book of essays, which it isn’t (sorry, now-misinformed New Yorker). It’s fiction, a series of short coming-of-age stories about a queer poet named Eileen Myles, who is like the collection’s author in many ways but not in all. I was so certain it was memoir because the book feels so lived-in—it brings you to tactile places, conjures the mud underfoot at Woodstock and those recognizable, “gorgeous grey feeling(s)” of adolescent romance. But Myles has long called Chelsea Girls an “autobiographical novel,” a hybrid of sorts. It merges the unreal, the dreamed-up, with the hyper-real.   More →

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LES Health Clinic Displaced By Essex Crossing Demands First Aid

Food stands aren’t the only things being bulldozed for Essex Crossing, the ever-growing Lower East Side development of housing, vendors and aerial vegetables. Community Healthcare Network, a medical mainstay since 1971, will be demolished in 2021 to make way for Site 10 of Essex Crossing. Now, the nonprofit health-care provider is calling for the city to provide financial support for their expensive move.  More →

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‘Guilty Pleasures’ and a Light-Up Dance Floor: Welcome To JJ’s Hideaway

(photo: Alex Staniloff)

Nowadays, many may have written off Williamsburg as a place that has fallen prey to the likes of big banks, pricey hotels, and chains. However, restaurateur Daniel Cipriani, of Bushwick’s Sea Wolf and the newly-opened Gemelli and The Ledge, still has faith in the neighborhood. That’s why his newest venture, the “post-punk dystopia”-themed bar JJ’s Hideaway, will be located in the midst of it all, on bustling Wythe Avenue.

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There’s a Great Doc About ’80s Post-Punk Shows in the Desert, and Their Organizer Is Ready to Rock Again

Savage Republic at Mojave Exodus near Lucerne Valley, CA 1983 (Photo: Scot Allen)

The email from Rooftop Films came hours before last night’s screening of Desolation Center at Green-Wood Cemetery in Sunset Park: “No standing, sitting, or leaning on any gravestone (no matter how sturdy it looks).” Apparently Lee Ranaldo didn’t get the memo, because during a post-screening performance involving an electric guitar suspended from a crane, the Sonic Youth member hopped onto the edge of an obelisk and ran his instrument across the stone to produce a howl that sounded all the more unholy under the full moon. More →

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A Glimpse into Orthodox Crown Heights, Courtesy of a Hipster-Hasid Uniter

On a recent summer morning, Rabbi Yoni Katz stood a few steps away from the Kingston train station, in the heart of Crown Heights, as he has been doing every day for the past two years. He was waiting for his guests to show up so he could usher them into a local library and begin his $69-per-head tour of the Hasidic community. As I exited the station and made my way down Kingston Street, I recognized his red beard and laid-back posture from an online profile and cheerfully walked up to him. More →

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Performance Picks: Weird Sex History, the Actual Macaulay Culkin, and More

THURSDAY

(image via The Nobodies / Facebook)

The Mx. Nobody Pageant Week 2
Thursday, August 15 at Brooklyn Bazaar, 7 pm: FREE

Drag Race isn’t on right now, but if you’re still itching for a competition involving lip-syncing and creative outfits, look no further than the Mx. Nobody Pageant, which will give you all that, but with less commercialism and restrictive notions of what a drag performer looks like. Anyone can compete in this pageant, and new performers are particularly welcomed. So, head on over to Brooklyn Bazaar to get a peek at what the future of drag might look like, and how diverse such an art form can truly be.

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