Just Do Art, Week of Sept. 18, 2014
JUSTIN VIVIAN BOND’S “LOVE IS CRAZY” and “THE DRIFT”
From that gloriously damaged, ad-libbing, self-medicating songstress of Kiki and Herb fame to author of the remarkably randy memoir “TANGO: My Childhood, Backwards and in High Heels” to a nuanced cover artist (the “Silver Wells” CD) to the dead-on turn as the title character in Scott Wittman’s 2012 La MaMa production of “Jukebox Jackie: Snatches of Jackie Curtis,” Justin Vivian Bond is sexual, intellectual and artistic expression in perpetual motion. Intensely fluid in every sense of what that might mean to you, Mx Bond can — and should — be seen in Uptown and Downtown form.
Presented as part of the French Institute Alliance Française’s Crossing the Line Festival, “Love is Crazy” is an evening of “raucous and seductive songs and stories about love,” with selections from V’s debut CD, “Dendrophile,” as well as the aforementioned “Silver Wells.” Fingers crossed, and maybe you’ll hear the standout “Wells” track: “Something Cool.” Sung from the point of view of Blanche DuBois, it’s not the only Tennessee Williams connection to be found. At Joe’s Pub, “The Drift” finds Mx Bond immersed in spoken word and song inspired by the title character from Williams’ novella “The Roman Spring of Mrs. Stone.”
“Love is Crazy” is performed on Thurs., Sept. 25 at 7:30 p.m. at FIAF’s Florence Gould Hall (55 E. 59th St., btw. Park & Madison Aves.). Tickets ($30, $20 for FIAF members) can be purchased by visiting fiaf.org/ctl or calling 800-982-2787. For info on other Crossing the Line Festival events, visit fiaf.org. For more info on the artist, visit justinbond.com. “Justin Vivian Bond: The Drift” is performed on Sept. 18, 19, Oct. 2, 3 at 7 p.m. at Joe’s Pub (425 Lafayette St., btw. Astor Pl. & E. Fourth St.). For tickets ($25), call 212-539-8500 or visit joespub.publictheater.org.
METROPOLITAN PLAYHOUSE PRESENTS “ICEBOUND”
Tirelessly devoted to presenting works from America’s theatrical heritage — and especially adept at choosing ones that are both revelatory and relevant — the East Village’s Metropolitan Playhouse opens their 23rd season (devoted to “Progress”) with “Icebound.” Seen only once on the New York stage since its 1923 premiere, this revival of Owen Davis’ Pulitzer Prize-winner for Drama marks only the second effort from the author, since choosing to abandon a string of highly lucrative westerns, sex comedies and melodramas in favor of more serious fare. Set in rural Maine (where Davis was born), “Icebound” concerns the chilly reception given to a shrewish second cousin who becomes heir to the estate of a stern matriarch. Denied any inheritance, the bitter children are also frozen out by the newly powerful cousin — who hires their on-the-lam black sheep brother to help around the house. They clash as well, but also envision a better future. “But nature will out,” warns Playhouse artistic director Alex Roe, in “a play that asks whether our habits and fears will always defy our highest aspirations.”
Previews: Sept. 19, 21, 22, 25 at 7:30 p.m. & Sept. 21 at 3 p.m. Opens Sept. 26, closes Oct. 19, Thurs.–Sat. at 7:30 p.m. & Sun. at 3 p.m. (plus Oct. 8, 11, 15 & 18 at 3 p.m.). At Metropolitan Playhouse (220 E. Fourth St., btw. Aves. A & B). Preview admission: $15, $10 for those under 18. During the run, tickets are $25 ($20 for students & seniors; $10 for those under 18). Purchase by calling 800-838-3006 or at metropolitanplayhouse.org.tickets.
INSTALLATION: “EVERYTHING BY MY SIDE”
The color may be plain and pure, but what’s waiting inside is fraught with mixed signals about everything from loneliness to intimacy to what’s public and what’s private. Argentinian dramatist and visual artist Fernando Rubio makes his U.S. debut with “Everything by my side,” in which seven white beds will be spaced along the riverside skyline, occupied by seven women. One by one, they will beckon the installation’s sole audience member to join them, at which point they’ll hear a whispered childhood memory. Part of The French Institute Alliance Française’s Crossing the Line festival, this site-specific performance is co-presented by Hudson River Park and Performance Space 122 — which continues to present work throughout the five boroughs, during the ongoing massive overhaul of their East Village home (see ps122.org for more info).
In English and Spanish. Fri. – Sun., Sept. 26-28, 2-7 p.m. Performances take place at 15-minute intervals, for individual audience members. At Hudson River Park’s Pier 45 (cross at Christopher St.). Tickets ($5) can be purchased at ps122.org or by calling 212-352-3101. For info on other Crossing the Line Festival events, visit fiaf.org.
— BY SCOTT STIFFLER