So our dear girlfriend Renée Cox is performing at BAM this Thursday night as part of The Brooklyn Bred series of the Next Wave Festival. You might know her mainly as a photographer/provocateur, but give the girl a chance. She’s sharing the stage with the headlining performance artist Clifford Owens — who is sure to shock, as well as Amanda Alfieri, Shaun Leonardo and Martha Wilson. Owens’ performances usually involve audience interaction with his physical body in some fashion creating spontaneity and chance to drive the performance. After much deliberation, and as a counterpoint to Owens’ piece, Cox is showing an 8 minute film called “The Goddess.” Over the phone she elaborated, “I’m doing a meditation, let the rhythm be your guide.” As for the title she added, “The Goddess who does not require validation from anyone is the most feared force on the planet.” OK now I’m scared too, but more power to you if you can distill that into an 8 minute movie. The evening promises to be an enthralling night of performance based art, so sit back, inhale, then exhale and let the rhythm take you with it.
The exhibition is now on view at the Bureau of General Services — Queer Division
Justin Vivian Bond (pictured) is like the patron saint of GAYLETTER. I can’t tell you the number of times we’ve featured events featuring V. If it was anyone else you might be forgiven for thinking our coverage was overkill, but with Justin — no one can get enough. Which is why we are so excited to help celebrate Justin on Wednesday, October 22 at the Cock. It’s technically a fundraiser for NYPAC, a non-profit organization that supports performance art.
The location for the benefit is especially fitting for Mx Bond, “who performed at The Cock’s original 12th Street location every Saturday, and was the first performer to christen its current — and soon to be former — incarnation. This benefit will be an opportunity to celebrate both Mx Bond and the history of the East Village and Lower East Side, which have been so actively intertwined.”
There’s going to be performances by Joseph Keckler, Erin Markey, Casey Legler, DJ Lina and Juliana Huxtable. It’s also highly likely that Justin will perform at some stage during the night (we can’t promise that, but it’s highly likely). Grab your tickets now.
Benefit Gala $150, After Party $50, Gala 7:00PM & 10PM, Wednesday, October 22, The Cock, 29 2ND AVE, NY. Buy your tickets here!
Where the hell did September go? We mentioned the Queer New Your International Festival last week but we have to mention it again because this is the last day of the festival and you must see these two performances. At 8:00PM there’s the U.S. premiere of a piece by Croatian artist Bruno Isaković’s Denuded for two dancers. This solo performance “is basing its movement quality on the relationship between breath and physical tension and ways in which it permeates the body in each moment…It sets these two organic body functions within the performing moment and uses gradation of their interdependence to radicalize, confront, and re-neutralize them.” That kind of description makes me go “uh-huh” and some of you might go “WTF,” but we promise you’ll like it. At 9:00PM there’s the U.S. premiere of Dancing Girl by artist Sujata Goel. Goel presents a fictional version of herself — “a mythical doll-like figure that reveals herself and continually morphs — from broken doll to beautiful doll to dancing doll to a lonely doll — finally disappearing completely and returning to a dormant invisible state. Dancing Girl depicts a performer who seeks to step outside of her body and confront the image of herself.” Again deep, but trust, well worth seeing.
OK, I saw this show Mighty Real: A Sylvester Musical last Thursday and I still have the title track spinning in my head. For those of you that don’t know, Sylvester was a drag icon from the disco days who sadly passed away from AIDS. Ms. Thing was fearless, ruling the club scene with hit after hit, getting her start on the stage with The Cockettes in San Francisco performing as Miss Ruby Blue. The musical immediately piqued my interest when I read that the original Broadway Dreamgirl Sheryl Lee Ralph was one of the co-producers. It’s non-stop music at a fever pitch for ninety minutes with no intermission, loosely telling the story of Sylvester’s life. The show stars Anthony Wayne as Sylvester and Anastacia McCleskey and Jacqueline B. Arnold as none other than the Weather Girls whose rendition of “It’s Raining Men” was everything! So take out that old sparkly top, do a light beat and head out to Mighty Real for a fierce ride on the soul train.
This must-see performance is happening on the opening night of the Queer New York International Arts Festival which returns to Abrons Art Center for the third year. The goal of the festival has been to bring diverse and provocative queer performances from around the world and to broaden “the traditional concept of “queer” (in) art, challenging perceptions about what queer is — and can be.” Each year we try to see as many performances as we can because there’s a lot of good stuff. I met with the curator last week and he told me that this performance is extra special. The two part performance, Confusions, is brought to us by a “highly innovative” Croatian theater director, Branko Brezovec and is going to be the first time that it’s been performed in the States. “Confusions was conceived as a radical theatre experiment...The novel follows the vicissitudes of young military school student Törless, whose confused moral complicity with his classmates, via brutality such as torture and rape, reveal the dark side of homoerotic relationships.” Sounds heavy right? Well I am not going to add anything else because you should go and experience it for yourself. Go and see this and many others from this amazing festival — you’ll be tweeting us “Thank You” soon.
There are not a lot of Warhol superstars left alive, Edie, Viva, Candy Darling, Taylor Mead and Jackie Curtis just to name a few have all perished BUT thankfully there is one star still shining and her name is Holly Woodlawn. As part of the unique series Genderfluid, Ms. Woodlawn will be interviewed by none other than Michael Musto tonight, September 13 at 8:00PM at the Nagelberg Theatre at the Baruch Performing Arts Center.
Director Paul Morrisey from the Warhol filmmaking entourage will introduce Holly who will also be sharing rare clips from her own collection of film, stage and tv appearances as well as perform a few songs live. I hear she’s also singing the classic “Walk On The Wild Side” that Lou Reed wrote about Holly!
I looked up Genderfluid out of curiosity and found this fitting explanation “a gender identity best described as a dynamic mix of boy and girl.” A definition that suits Ms. Woodlawn who is truly a living legend and a superb closing to Genderfluid, the weeklong festival of performance, film and art that ends tonight. Grab a ticket and take a ride to the wild side.
$25, $50 VIP includes preferred seating and backstage photo op, 8:00PM, Nagelberg Theatre at Baruch Performing Arts Center, 55 Lexington Ave. (enter on 25th St.) NY, NY.
Richard Kennedy brought this event to 54 Below a few months ago, but this time around he’s way more excited because the event is happening at Joe’s Pub — this venue carries lots of history of experimental downtown performance. “It’s such an important cultural space for all of us, so we really couldn’t be more excited. It’s going to be so very COOL!” Richard team up with Mark Dommu and Paul Leopold (aka Boywolf) from The Culture Whore to make this event happen. Paul and Mark are performing in or involved in events almost every week, so they seem like the right match. They have put together a great line up of performers and experimental queer nightlife personalities that includes Psychoegyptian, Babi Audi, Donna Vivino, John Arthur Greene, Macy Rodman and Chris Tyler. Plus, Richard, Paul and Mark will be performing together, awwwww! cute. These homos are interested in bringing together “the two extremes, Broadway and underground performance.” Mark adds, “we were such little theater faggots in high school who have grown up to be the ultimate queerdo party boy artsluts.” Looks like their dreams will continue to come true this Saturday night!
Blood Orange dresses like a supporting character in a mid 90’s Robin Williams film (sorry for the topical and sad reference). That isn’t a read, it’s just a fact. He loves a pair of faded 90’s moms jeans and a leather cap. He could have been the 4th dad in Full House. I just mention it, because it’s something I’ve always noticed. He brings me back to my childhood, which both comforts and confuses me. His music on the other hand ALWAYS excites me. Let’s be real, Solange’s last album was all Blood Orange. I know she tried to come for him on Twitter acting like she made that album all on her own, but please girl, we know what’s up. Dev is a brilliant producer and wonderful musician. This Saturday he’s playing at the Summer Stage in Central Park. If you’ve never seen a show there, you absolutely must go — it’s so pretty and peaceful. It’s like a mini Bonnaroo or Coachella — there’s so much nature and good vibes. Joining him on stage are guests Moses Sumney and Sean Nicholas Savage. Best of all it’s FREEEEE!!!
Summer 2014 feels like the right time to try new things, at least that’s what we have been doing this Summer at GAYLETTER HQ. We got an email from Mr. Murray Hill and it seems that he’s approaching the season with a similar attitude: “Hope summer is kicking! If you’re in town this weekend on Friday night, I’m back uptown for another show. It’s a one man show - like a Vegas lounge act — with my band. This is one of the first shows done without acts or ‘hosting’ so it’s a super exciting challenge.” Usually what keeps Murray going when he’s on stage is the company of some voluptuous ladies — Murray loves being around big boobs... He might have at least one pair, his show is accompanied by the The Rimshots. They consist of “4-time ASCAP Award-winning bandleader Jesse Elder (piano), Matt Parker (tenor sax), Kenbal Zwerin (bass) and Arthur Vint (drums and rimshot specialist).” We’re told to expect lots of camp, “contemporary humor,” tales from his earlier career and "his trademark blend of hammy Borscht Belt humor, irreverent monologues, joint-popping slapstick, so-bad-it’s-gotta-be-good crooning, and freewheeling ad-libbing.” It’s Summer, it’s showbiz!