Get cozy Sunday, Dec 8th 1-7pm for the Greenpointers Annual Holiday Market located at 67 West Street! This year’s Nutcracker-inspired holiday market is transforming the rustic Greenpoint Loft into a magical winter wonderland filled with local artisans, tasty treats and TONS of free interactive activities. With so much good cheer under one roof, make it official and RSVP! Come early and stay all day.
The experimental theater group Title:Point has been bopping around Brooklyn (and beyond) for well over a decade, and Ryan William Downeyhas, in many ways, been at the center of its zany, beating heart. As co-Artistc Director of the company, Ryan is a consummate multi-hyphenate theater artist: an actor, playwright, and all-around theatermaker. Now, he prepares for the world premiere of his new play, Sleeping Car Porters, a “pitch black comedy that explores western masculine myth through a phantasmagoria of power, violence, and mystery.” The play comes to The Brick December 5–14, a venue helmed by Theresa Buchheister, a former Thursday Spotlight artist and an actor in the play. (She portrays Billy the Kid, which should be worth the price of admission alone.)
Here, we catch up with Ryan the week of the performances to learn about Title:Point, his playwriting path, and more.
Greenpointers: For those unfamiliar with Title:Point, could you describe that theater company a little? And how did you come to be involved?
Ryan William Downey: Title:Point is the type of theater company that frightens you into laughter. A Title:Point play should be equal parts slapstick comedy, abject horror, and pure existential dread.
I’ve been involved with Title:Point for about a decade, but its history precedes me. It was started by Theresa Buchheister and Samara Naeymi a few years before that. Theresa and I met while working at The Strand bookstore. She invited me to join her writer’s group and from there I joined Title:Point as an actor/writer. Over the years we earned each other’s trust where now we run the company together and have expanded to many other creative endeavors (Exponential Festival, ?!: New Works, Vital Joint, and beginning in January 2020, The Brick).
What was the genesis of Sleeping Car Porters?
I began writing Sleeping Car Porters in 2015, though it took a long time for the ideas to crystallize into something resembling where the play is now. I originally conceived it to be an intimate two-person show that would be easy for us to tour and present in any space. Which is hilarious given where we have ended up. Our production at The Brick has as big a creative team and as ambitious a technical design as any show Title:Point has ever produced.
This piece plays on American myths and Western masculinity, incorporating Billy the Kid. Why use that figure, and is the other main role, Zodiac, an original character?
Billy the Kid and Zodiac are both based, rather loosely, on their historical counterpoints. In this case, Zodiac is some version of the Zodiac Killer who terrorized Northern California in the 60s and 70s. History is a tricky thing with both of them. Folks can’t seem to settle on where Billy the Kid was born or buried, for instance (he has two graves!), and the Zodiac remains un-apprehended or definitively identified so he has become a kind of black hole in the damaged American psyche for the last 50 years. They both provided a jumping off point to delve into the themes I was interested in exploring with this script, how killers become folk heroes or confounding mysteries, how they change in our collective memory over time. Sometimes the more you read on the subject the further you get away from the truth of the thing. Our take on both characters is prismatic and kaleidoscopic in nature. They are at times unrecognizable.
Talk a little about your work and trajectory: we get a lot of creatives in our Thursday Spotlight series, but it’s rare we get to speak with a playwright!
I’ve been writing drama in one form or another since I was a teenager but most of the work we have produced in the last decade has been collaboratively written. A typical Title:Point show may have two to ten writers on it, depending on the development process. I wanted to write Sleeping Car Porters all by my lonesome to get back in the practice of climbing the mountain and telling the story. I am working on a play that operates like a slasher film and have several screenplays in development, mostly working in the horror genre for the foreseeable future.
What has your partnership been like with Theresa?
Theresa drags me into every bad idea she’s ever had and I just keep hopping in the hand basket headed straight to hell. We can out-argue any creative team in the American theater. Don’t believe a single word Theresa says about me.
Anything else you’d like to add?
I’d like to say that the creative team behind this production have been invaluable to its coming into existence. In most cases the parts were written with the actors in mind and the technical team has exceeded all of my expectations profoundly. I am so proud of the strange thing we have built together. If it’s a failure it’s my fault because they have given the production everything it needs to be successful. I love them all to death.
☺Hey! It’s a Comedy Show @ Silver Light Tavern (689 Lorimer St), 730pm, $5, a stand-up comedy show bringing you some of New York’s best comedians, More Info ♫♦ Set Me Free – The Musical @ Muriel Schulman Theater (106 Calyer St), 8pm, $40, a story of finding a way to accept your past while planning for the future. Love heals all wounds, Buy Tix * 94 Precinct Community Council Meeting @ St. John’s Lutheran Church (155 Milton St) 7pm, FREE, More Info ♫ Dervisi @ TROOST (1011 Manhattan Ave), 8pm, FREE, More Info
THURSDAY 12/5 –
^ East/West Noodleways @ Archestratus Books & Foods (160 Huron St), 630pm, $20, an arancine happy hour, panel discussion, Q + A, and book signing, Buy Tix ♫♦ Dobbin St 3rd Anniversary Party @ Dobbin St (64 Dobbin St), 730pm, FREE, speciality cocktails, bites by vendor friends, and a special choreography compilation, RSVP ♦ Opening Party @ Miriam Gallery (319 Bedford Ave) 6pm, FREE, welcome Miriam to the neighborhood along with a site-specific sound and movement performance and a risograph printing station, More Info ♫ Puce Mary, JFK, Wetware, 51717, Hive Mind @ Saint Vitus Bar (1120 Manhattan Ave), 8pm, $15, Buy Tix
Dance with the sugar plum fairies inside our dreamy Nutcracker-themed Holiday Market on Sunday, Dec 8th, 1-7 pm. Located inside the gorgeous Greenpoint Loft (67 West St, 5th Flr.), our highly-curated selection of indie makers will be selling irresistible handcrafted gifts and tasty treats. Warm your cockles with FREE fun activities including Acupuncture Treatments, Tarot Readings, Face Painting, Nail Art, Holiday Ornament Making and more!
A ragtag crew of formertheatermajors will convene and carol around the neighborhood on Friday, December 20. Soprano Sharon Gladstone has dubbed the crew the “Evergreenpoint Carolers,” and their evolving songbook features a smattering of yuletide tunes from timeless classics (“Silent Night”) to secular goodies (“Deck the Halls”).
Singing in SATB choir arrangement, the a capella ensemble will don scarves and shake sleigh bells starting at 7 PM. The troupe of self-described “vocally trained, but formally lax” singers will perform in three locations over the course of the evening: first at the Greenpoint Avenue subway station (off of India Street — don’t accidentally go to Greenpoint Ave’s entrance and miss the magic), followed by outside WORD bookstore (126 Franklin Street), and ending at The Springs (224 Franklin Street) at about 8:30 PM. The carolers say they may go door to door if they’re feeling frisky.
Community-oriented and organized by Greenpointers Art Editor Billy McEntee, the carolers hope to spread holiday cheer in one of Brooklyn’s most spirited and decorated neighborhoods. To donate or learn more, please email Billy at [email protected].
For over a decade, Hosh has been pioneering low-cost and accessible yoga and well-being programming for Brooklyn. Our vision has been as modest as our roots as a volunteer organization circa April 2009: well-being is a right of life rather than a luxury. More calm people discover the benefits and science of flow and inner peace in their lives and in communion with friends and family. And Hosh, is a champion of mental health prevention programs for the aging and the youth. We scaled our work to over 20,000 students in Brooklyn very cost-effectively. 10 years as a non-profit social enterprise means we have provided this community with a durable social value. And thank you for trusting and supporting us. We are a market-based non-profit social enterprise of, for, and by the people of Brooklyn. While business has continued to commercialize yoga, HOSH will continue to offer universal access to yoga as it is our mission to do so regardless of skill or income.
On January 1st 2020, drop-in classes will be $13.
On January 1st 2020, all monthly sustaining memberships will be $55.
On January 31, 2020 we will discontinue our partnership with ClassPass.
We live in a country where healthcare inadequately promotes health preventive programs such as yoga, plant medicines, eastern medicine, tai chi, and meditation. And America is having a discussion today about healthcare for all. Yoga is an ancestral life ethic from eastern philosophy and religion. And it is still, a cutting-edge approach indigeous to India. To our students we say to you: thank for your community presence, practice, loyalty, and blessings. We feel seen and honored by you. Hosh is a yoga and well-being solution that continues to be here because you keep coming. Keep coming and tell more people than ever.
Now is the time to put Hosh on a forward path to become a 20 year Brooklyn well-being institution. We will be 20 years old in 2029 by being massively transformative with our purpose and existence as a community organization. Our bold mission solidity and our bold mission renaissance for 2029 is a studio that is truly diverse, inclusive, and equitable. You can’t stop the queering and fluttering of all of us as wellness tinkerers. Just in the past months, two yoga studios in this neighborhood have closed. HOSH is a mission business, this bold step is a mission decision not a business one. Hosh is still here for everyone in Brooklyn and beyond. And we believe we can be radical social advocates of well-being together into our next decade. Lets spread well-being the Brooklyn way another ten years! We are diverse in our leadership and board. And we love Hosh and this Brooklyn community. We believe yoga is a healthcare alternative and supplement for the uninsured, for low-income neighborhoods, and for all people in all places. Yoga is a tremendum preventive health intervention with known life-changing health incomes. Healing is when we can bear witness our own suffering without pain. Yoga helps us address and reduce anxiety, stress, depression, and trauma. Yoga heals and Hosh helps us eliminate institutional and market barriers to well-being by indigenizing healthcare for all. The past ten years for Hosh were about community resilience. The next ten years at Hosh is about community radiance. Let’s be a beacon of what a thriving yoga community is about in Brooklyn. We will continue to promote well-being for all people in all places because we can be healthy and happy trillionaires of good deeds.
Hosh Yoga (657 Meeker Ave) is a nonprofit organization that began to provide open level yoga classes in McCarren Park to the public. Hosh was able to open their own studio in July 2010. In September 2017, after a rent hike and a month’s notice to move, Host relocated to 657 Meeker Ave and continues to serve the community.
A global art foundation and gallery that will offer free programming is scheduled to open on Sunday, Dec. 15, displaying works by many notable artists including Ai Weiwei, Louise Bourgeois, and Yoko Ono.
The Faurschou Foundation (148 Green St.) was started in 2011 by Jens Faurschou, “a Danish collector, art advisor, and philanthropist,” according to the gallery’s website. Fuarschou also has spaces in other global cities including Copenhagen, Beijing, and Venice. Continue reading →
Get ready Greenpoint! This Sunday, December 8th from 1-7p.m. Greenpointers is transforming the 5th floor of 67 West Street into a glittering Nutcracker suite for our annual Holiday Market! Featuring the best in handcrafted goods, shopping local has never felt so good.
We’ve gathered up 60+ AMAZING vendors under one roof to help you get your holiday shopping done early this year. On hand will be a ton of FREE activities like acupuncture treatments, ornament making, 3D imaging, nail art and face painting to keep you going all day long. Refreshments include warmed mulled wine, Williamsburg’s Kombrewcha, and locally brewed beer by Greenpoint Beer & Ale.
Support small businesses this holiday season. Here’s a sneak peek at some the featured vendors we think you’ll go gaga over this Sunday.
A clothing brand inspired by nature. Venezuelan-born, Laili Lau’s unique worldview has created a collection of soft yet durable, eco-friendly garments. Free from constraints, Lau’s modern aesthetic celebrates the female form by playing with volume, texture, and color. Follow Laili Lau on Instagram @bylaililau.
Feel confident in Citta Yoga NYC’s latest line of yoga attire. From leggings to sports bras, women of all sizes and shapes will love the 4 way-stretch fabric that makes getting into poses a breeze. Catch more of Citta Yoga’s playful designs @citta_yoga_nyc.
Greenpoint-based Sharon Goldberg brings us her tiny terrarium jewelry handcrafted from living plants. With Roots terrarium jewelry encapsulates reindeer moss into delectable necklaces, rings, bracelets and more. Follow them @withroots.
Float Dreamery borrows from ice cream classics and twists them into a 100% plant-based vegan ice cream that is so lip-smacking good, we swear you won’t even miss the dairy. Fun flavors like matcha green tea and Blueberry cereal have us jonezing for a guilt-free scoop. Find out more @floatdreamery.
Buy a pair of custom designed shoes and help bring communities out of poverty. Adelante Shoe Co. employs highly-skilled artisans in Guatemala to create a pair of bespoke footwear that arrives on your doorstep in 10 days. Find out more about their mission @adelanteshoeco.
Reduce, reuse, lend and mend. Alleyoop NYC wants to create a more sustainable way to clothe the little folks we love through their thoughtfully curated collections of unique vintage and preloved pieces for babies and toddlers. Follow them on Instagram @alleyoopnyc.
Elevate your mojo with Positive Times minimal jewelry pieces. Handcrafted in Brooklyn, each piece is designed to help you tune-in and manifest more positivity into your life. A portion of all proceeds goes to charities which support women’s rights, wellness and empowerment. Follow them @positivetimes.
Take a step back in time with one of Photo Gallery NYC’s vintage camera negatives. Thanks to local resident Ray Simone, film negatives destined to the dustbin are given a new life. These snapshots from NYC’s bygone era are available in large format and poster size. See more @nyc.classicshots.
Say adios to winter blues with 204 HausCrafters colorful coaster sets and trays. Hand-painted by renowned Greenpoint-based artist Teo Gonzalez and best-selling author, Kim Masson, 204 HausCrafter’s limited-edition coaster sets and trays are perfect for spicing up your home decor. Follow them @204hauscrafters.