Tuesday, December 14, 2010

When You Wish Upon A Star


Contributed by Guest Blogger of the Week, Greg Walloch.

Bells are ringing in the heads of most New Yorkers this time of year as they shake off their holiday cocktail party hangovers to brave the rush manic shoppers and bitter chill that cuts through the wintery city air. Come inside, warm up and spend some time with some of the brightest stars of New York independent theater as we ask them: What is your holiday wish this season?

Justin Bond: (singer-songwriter and performance artist)
Photo by Lance Horne

What is your holiday wish this season?
My holiday wish this season, aside from my show, Christmas Spells at the Abrons Arts Center, December 9-18 being sold out, because this tranny needs some coins; aside from a sold out Christmas show and money, my fondest wish, the thing I want the most, is about a week surrounded by nature and sunshine with my beloved and a couple of good books. Selfish, I know, BUT if I could trade all of the above for lasting peace in the Middle-East, I would do it. But, in order to do my part and to signal my sincerity, I have placed a moratorium on building developments on the West Banks of Manhattan. Happy Holidays to All.   XOX Justin Vivian Bond

Justin Bond: Christmas Spells, December 9-18, 8 pm at Abrons Art Center. www.JustinBond.com

Michael Arthur: (Balthrop, Alabama’s town-drawer Toxey Goodwater and the official Archival Artist for Joe’s Pub at the Public Theater)
Photo by Bernie DeChant

What is your holiday wish this season?
I wish more folks would blow up their TV and try to find Jesus on their own. It's sort of a Spanish Pipe-dream (and John Prine's idea).

Michael Arthur and the rest of Balthrop, Alabama will be performing Chritmas in Balthrop, Alabama at the David Rubenstein Atrium at Lincoln Center on December 16 and Joe's Pub on December 17. www.MichaeldArthur.com and www.BalthropAlabama.com


Taylor Mac
(playwright, actor, singer-songwriter, and director)

Photo by Drew Geraci

What is your holiday wish this season?
...more verbs and less nouns.

Taylor Mac will be performing in The Walk Across America For Mother Earth in the Under The Radar Festival at La Mama Etc. January 15th - 30th. www.TaylorMac.net

Tanya O'Debora
(actress, writer, and comedian)
Photo by by Molly Peck

What is your holiday wish this season?
It's the same as every year.  I wish for my art to pay me a living wage.  But I would not turn down a tiny pet giraffe that loves hugs.
Tanya O’Debora performs in Beaches 2 Every second Thursday of the month at Under St Marks Theater. Next Show: 1/13 www.beaches2.com

Sxip Shirey
(circus performer and composer)

What is your holiday wish this season?
I want the love of my life to say she'll marry me. I am going to London to win her hand. It's all very old school romance. I expect there to be some sort of man to man battle on a draw bridge or high castle wall. Then we will all sit down for ale and meat pies.

Sxip Shirey will perform in Sxip's Hour of Charm at the Atrium at Lincoln Center on Jan 6th with storyteller Greg Walloch, singer Dayna Kurtz, butoh-contortionist Johnathan Nosan, choreographed fight troup Samuri Sword Soul, and clowns Butt Kapinski Private EYE and Snaps! www.SxipShirey.com

Bridget Everett (singer and performer)
Photo by Allison Michael Orenstein

What is your holiday wish this season?
Growing up, we spent every x-mas around the piano singing and laughing and drinking. Since I can't get home this year, I want to make as much music with my friends as possible. Right down to last call at sing sing karaoke Christmas night.  
Bridget Everett performs in Our Hit Parade starring Bridget Everett, Kenny Mellman and Neal Medlyn at Joe’s Pub on Jan 26. www.ourhitparade.blogspot.com


Chris Wells (writer and performer)

What is your holiday wish this season?
I wish New York was closer to LA.

I wish people would stop fucking up their faces with plastic surgery, although then I probably wouldn't spend so much time on awfulplasticsurgery.com

I wish I lived somewhere with sunlight pouring in the windows and a garden right outside ... giverny, perhaps?

It's so dull, but I wish I had more money. but I know that I am far better off than most of the rest of the world. so maybe I wish I felt richer.

I wish I could take a year off and travel the world. I wish my dog would live forever. I wish I could eat whatever I wanted and not gain weight. Sometimes I wish I still had a big, thick full head of hair.

And I wish we'd leave this combative/aggressive/mean-spirited time in human history and enter a period of tolerance and goodwill and music and sparkles and love and beauty and fellowship and equality and enlightenment and spiritual evolution.

In the meantime, I can't wait to see the holiday windows at Bergdorf's.

Chris Wells hosts the next gathering of the Obie award winning Secret City (the theme will be darkness) at Dixon Place on December 19th. www.thesecretcity.org

Travis Chamberlain (director and curator)

Photo by Galya Kovalyova

What is your holiday wish this season?
My holiday theater wish is that everyone who reads this will see at least one new Tennessee Williams production in 2011.  Williams, if he were still alive, would be turning 100 next year, and he deserves to be celebrated! There are so many exciting productions of his work happening in the next year, many of texts that are still relatively unknown. I don't care if you go see the blockbuster production of Sweet Bird of Youth with Kidman and Franco on Broadway, or The Wooster Group's radical deconstruction of Vieux Carre at the Baryshnikov Art Center, or Moises Kaufman's stage adaptation of One Arm with Labyrinth Theater Company, or, if I may be so bold, my own site-specific production of the erotic thriller Green Eyes at the Hudson Hotel this January. Just go, revel in the melodrama, the sensuality, the satire...the hot, sweaty, surreal Southern gothic-ness of it all! And remember the man as the revolutionary, boundary-pushing queer artist that he was and continues to be.

Travis Chamberlain’s production of Tennessee Williams' Green Eyes, starring Erin Markey and Adam Couperthwaite, will run as site-specific event in a suite at the Hudson Hotel from January 5th to 23rd. Chamberlain is simultaneously producing a series of public programs entitled The Kindness of Strangeness at the Museum of Art and Design, recognizing and reclaiming Williams as a pivotal member of the queer avant garde.

You can find out more about Green Eyes and purchase tickets here: http://www.theatermania.com/new-york/shows/tennessee-williams-green-eyes_176005/
For information about The Kindness of Strangeness programs at MAD (100% free to the public), please visit: http://www.madmuseum.org

Lady Rizo, aka Amelia Zirin-Brown (comedienne and chanteuse)

Photo by Kevin Kauer
What is your holiday wish this season?
I wish to have more moments when I can sit back in a room full of friends, artists, family-- those that inspire me and make me laugh that special way where my head flies back and you can see my molars.  I will turn off my blackberry.  I will sit with a cup of nog in front of a fireplace and soak it in.  Oh, and we will sing together, perhaps carols because this half-jewish blonde loves Christmas carols in 4 part harmony.

Lady Rizo performs at Joe's Pub on December 17, and at Le Poisson Rouge on January 19th. www.LadyRizoAndTheAssettes.com

Desiree Burch (writer and performer)

Photo by Edmond Song

What is your holiday wish this season?
I wish for space.  Somehow.  Magically.  Gut the dead stuff, NYC.  We all need a little more space, a little more air, a little more light for all the good stuff to breathe and get really good.  Whoever took all the space away, stop being so sad and greedy in the corner.  We are going to need some of that back.

I wish for more of us to spread our art and discovery into other spaces--so we don't feel the need to defend our crummy NYC art capital of the world title, which limits all of us anyway.

I wish for greatness to take a break from being humble and hard-working.  It's time to play the brass and collect our coins. 

I wish for more celebration for its own sake.

I wish everyone would just move to the center of the car for a change.  Yes, I know you want to be close to the door for the next stop.  We all want to be close to the door for the next stop.  Just for once, think, "I'm going to help someone else have a good day rather than the same shitty one over and over." 

I wish people would stop putting ALL their pictures on Facebook.  Just the good stuff, please.

I wish for more energy to see shows when I am not doing shows. 

I wish for Mr. Big (mysterious magical entity or band) to show up at my door with the contract and the sweepstakes-sized check already. 

I wish for less drunken wishing and kvetching. 

I wish for all of us to receive something this season that we truly feel is a gift. 

PS: I wish we were all getting laid more.  seriously.  it would help.  so much.

Desiree Burch, New York Neo-Futurist performs in Too Much Light Makes the Baby Go Blind --THE BEST OF 2010! at The Kraine Theater on December 17th & 18th. www.DesireeBurch.com


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