The beauty of being an artist is that when life hands you lemons, you get to make a piece about it. The HOT! Festival brings one such industrious type to the New Museum tonight: Joseph Keckler. In Featured Creatures, the monologist/singer collaborates with violinist Dan Bartfield to integrate the strings with his texts, heightening stories to an operatic level. The "creatures" they create—"short-form pieces with musical explosions," as Keckler describes—take droll looks back on Keckler's days getting through adolescence, facing the daily grind as a vengeful receptionist, and discovering his sexuality at a relative's funeral—difficulties about which he has thankfully lived to tell. With special guest Max Steele.
Thu., July 30, 7 p.m., 2009

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