News & Politics

In Square Circle


A recent New York Times article proclaimed that performance art is “back,” when it really just seems more institutionalized. The once vivid scene has been moribund for years. Still, performance is a form where nothing is ironclad unless it’s a costume.

One of last year’s most anticipated spectacles was definitely uninstitutionalized, that evening of pugilism called Box Opera. David Leslie, the artist formerly known as the Impact Addict, defeated writer Jonathan Ames in several hard-fought rounds at Angel Oresanz. “Everybody’s trying to fight me now,” reports Leslie, who has scheduled four and possibly six new bouts beginning October 14 at 8 (353 Broadway, 479-7344). One thing that makes this “performance,” not “sport,” is Leslie’s hope to lose—but not right away. Presumably new Box Operas will happen every subsequent Saturday till he’s no longer standing. In this autumn of bloody noses, each fight night will also feature two or three sparring matches open to “any performance art all-star with a fantasy of getting their own robe,” as Leslie puts it. The 353 Broadway venue, an empty fabric store, is already up and puffing, a rehearsal hall/training camp for two-fisted artists determined to live out their prizefight dreams.

The rest of the new season looks less . . . taxing.


September 13

Barrio, 99 Stanton Street, 533-9212

For a fall preview even cooler than this one, check out the playful, shameless, over-the-top Lucy Show. The Factress (Sexton of Dancenoise fame), with sidekick and gadfly Nurse Vendetta “Asparagus” K. Starr (Iverson), will interrogate artists who have performances upcoming at various Downtown-ish venues.


September 14

Parsons Center for New Design, 55 West 13th Street, 9th floor, 766-2627,

Franklin Furnace begins a new season of Internet performances with ID Runners: Re-Flesh the Body. Ludin, of Fakeshop, will develop the Web site with 3-D modeling, live-motion capture video, and, no doubt, all manner of streaming whatchamajiggers. Watch at Parsons or just log on.


September 14-16

The Kitchen Center, 512 West 19th Street, 255-5793

One of Europe’s long-established performance companies presents “a scientific study of absurdity” in a rare New York appearance.


September 14-October 14

WOW Café Theater, 59 East 4th Street, 631-1068

The theatrical “home for wayward girls” celebrates its 20th with a full month of plays, cabaret, and drag kings. (Call for schedule.)


October 4-28

HERE, 145 Sixth Avenue, 647-0202

The premiere of Highway to Tomorrow fuses found-object puppets, midcentury Afropop, and Euripedes’s The Bacchae.


October 5-7

The Kitchen Center, 512 West 19th Street, 255-5793

Probably best known for her work at the Clit Club and with Ron Athey’s troupe, Tolentino explores the bottom of the human psyche in The Bottom Project.


October 6-7, 13-14

P.S. 122, 150 First Avenue, 477-5288

Finley reprises Shut Up and Love Me, a show about sexual power—flaunting it, abusing it, mocking it.


October 10-12, 14, 20-21, 27-28

Dixon Place, 309 East 26th Street, 532-1546

Bullock’s new one-man show features “party devil and political activist Princess Sahara” trying to find the daughter she gave up at birth.


October 19-22, 25-29

P.S. 122, 150 First Avenue, 477-5288

Inspired by her Rome Prize residency, this one-woman Costume Institute will premiere Roamin’ Holiday—A View From a Broad. Expect startling new puns, pneumatics, outfits, and outrages.


November 2-4, 9-11

The Kitchen Center, 512 West 19th Street, 255-5793

Their new piece explores the effects of poison on both the social and individual body.


November 30-December 10

P.S. 122, 150 First Avenue, 477-5288

Shannon moves so beautifully with his crutches he simply seems to have four legs. Two new works run concurrently: a full-length dance, Old Rain; and Regarding the Fall, a performance/video exploration of the public’s reaction to disabled kinetics.

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