You are currently browsing the monthly archive for June 2012.
It is proverbial to say the city is naked and filled with eight million stories. The Bad and the Better, playing at The Peter Jay Sharp Theater on 42nd street, is detective noir set in contemporary New York City that tries in scope and imagination to reach that magic number. Twenty-six (count ‘em) actors from the downtown theater troupe The Amoralists tell a story of corrupt cops, corrupt politicians, corrupt revolutionary anarchists, and more than one moll with a heart of gold, making you feel as though eight million isn’t actually all that many storylines.
2012 is half over, and so far it looks like the apocalypse has been averted. In typical human fashion we have invited our destruction to sit with us at the table; and just at the last minute, just when it looked like destruction was going to have us for dinner, we trixy rabbits slip out of its noose and high tail it to the mountains, forests, and deserted places to do what bunnies and humans do — repopulate the earth.
Michael Bradford’s play Olives and Blood is a memorial, a testament to the aftereffect of Spanish poet Federico Garcia Lorca who was allegedly assassinated near his childhood home in Granada by fascist militiamen in 1936. It is a hymn to the power of dramatic poetry to endure and overcome the prosaic power of angry men and sclerotic social conventions. Garcia Lorca’s favorite word for that power is duende: that which “gives you chills, makes you smile or cry as a bodily reaction to an artistic performance that is particularly expressive.” In Olives and Blood Garcia Lorca himself is closer to the original meaning of duende — a goblin, elf, or imp. He is a spirit, a ghost of the creative energy that operates through perfect metaphor, shaping formless experience into memory and then art.
Contributed by Robin Elisabeth Kilmer
Modern renditions of Romeo and Juliet aren’t rare, but remakes set in a taxi garage are. Such a setting puts Empirical Rogue Theatre Company’s rendition in the same borough as the West Side Story and Bhaz Llurmann’s movie version of the Bard’s most popular play. There are glaring differences, however, that place it in a neighborhood of its own.
Cultural Capitol welcomes our guest columnist Keith Meatto! Check out is other work at Frontier Psychiatrist.
Beethoven and Quasimodo team up to write a musical interpretation of a cryptic stage direction in Anton Chekhov’s play The Cherry Orchard, but both men are deaf and near death, Beethoven is senile, and the project ends in failure. Such is the setup of The Hunchback Variations, based on Mickle Maher’s play with music by Mark Messing, a “chamber opera” that had a successful run in Chicago and opened June 1 at 59E59 Theaters in New York.
“I hope I die before I get old.” – Roger Daltrey
Slim and Cavale are holed up in an apartment in the East Village. If you want to find them, ask the lobster boy standing on the corner of 1st Ave and 2nd street. He’ll give you a fortune cookie with directions to their lair.
The folks at One Old Crow Productions have transformed a studio apartment into a studio theater for their production of Sam Sheppard and Patti Smith’s 1971 one act Cowboy Mouth. Stepping through the door is very nearly like stepping through a forty-year time warp into the gritty, mythical, heroin soaked New York of punk rock lore. Alas, the Mars Bar may be no more, but the smell of the Ramones lingers in the peeling paint above Lucky Cheng’s.