The life of a writer is a miserable, solitary one. Or something. Actually, I tend to find life to be exciting and interpersonal interaction filled, which is perhaps why I’m not quite the writer I sometimes wish I was. But trust me–I’ll take friendship and human interaction over suicidal loneliness and depression any day. That said, there are some things I’m writing about, or have recently written about, or that you should know about, and this is a blog post that just slaps it all down. Welcome to the confusion of my mind.
- What does the 1955 New American Machinist Handbook have to do with Susan Sontag, James Agee, and the ever-present tension in socially or politically engaged art between call-to-action and aesthetic seduction? I have no idea, personally, but these seem to be the questions Sibyl Kempson is grappling with in Let Us Now Praise Susan Sontag, which opens this coming week at Abrons Arts Center, and constitutes the debut of her new theater company.
- David Herskovits of Target Margin Theater is one of those people whose positivity and relentless optimism always blow me away. Not many directors think like him anymore: His TMT Lab series, an ongoing laboratory and incubator for exploring dramaturgical strategies for grappling with concepts, aesthetics, and ideas, has provoked me many times in the past, particularly with his last round dealing with the legacy of LES Yiddish theater from the early 2oth century. The next round is still in progress, tackling the work of Gertrude Stein. Whose work I’ve only seen staged once, by Heiner Goebbels. Who liked the bizarre interview I wrote up enough to have it republished in program notes for the show around Europe.
- Jim Neu’s The Floatones. Which will be staged this May, by Catherine Galasso, at La Mama (where it premiered in 1995), with Jess Barbagallo, Greg Zuccolo, Joshua William Gelb, and Larissa Velez-Jackson. Someone pitched it to me as a series of “performance crushes,” which made me jealous because my performance crushes!
- Raja Feather Kelly. Tonight and tomorrow are your last chances to catch Andy Warhol’s 15 (Color Me, Warhol) at Dixon Place. This is what I thought. Other people thought different things. Decide for yourself. And be impressed.
- Catch at the Invisible Dog. If I haven’t seen you for a while, say hi at the Invisible Dog tomorrow where I will be a Catch. Which I haven’t been to for a while. NYC is playing host to Philly artists for iteration no. 67, so let’s give them a friendly Brooklyn welcome. I love Philly.