improvisation

5th Annual “Never Before Never Again” Improvisation Festival at Triskelion Arts

Guest curated by Rachel Mckinstry & Friends, Never Before Never Again is a series of performances and events dedicated to improvisation at Triskelion Arts (106 Calyer Street). The goal? Bring together improvisation-based performance artists, cross-pollinate communities, and highlight the varied possibilities and styles of improvisation.
This festival presents artists who chase the surprises and invitations that come along with improvising for an audience and who approach performance as an experiment rather than a pre-determined idea. This is an opportunity for viewer and performer to raise questions, eliminate the tight grip of expectation, and replace it with freedom, risk, and communication. This year’s festival will feature multiple weeks of performances including works by The Lovelies, Site Project, Hannah Wendel & Artists, Sarah Chien, Nicole Wolcott & Guests, and azumi O E + Sean Ali + Carlo Costa.
Never Before Never Again will also offer a variety of free workshops hosted by our festival artists. The workshops are designed to expand our investigation and understanding of improvisational forms. Workshops are open to all movers, shakers, and magic makers. All workshops will take place in Triskelion Arts’ Muriel Schulman Theater.
For a full lineup, see below, and for tickets — $18 in advance and $22 at the door — visit here.
Festival Schedule
PERFORMANCE: Thurs, January 17 at 8pm: Luther Bangert / Patrick Ferreri / indecisiveProductions / Singer Joy / Nicole Wolcott & Guests / Sarah Chien
PERFORMANCE: Fri, January 18 at 8pm: Nicole Wolcott & Guests / Sarah Chien
OPEN SESSION: Sat, January 19 at 6pm: Headlining Festival Artists & Friends along with Jason Mears (saxophone), Matteo Liberatore (guitars), and Andy Dickerson (lighting) come together to create an improvised piece. It’s an open session, an experiment; a laboratory; an invitation for viewer and performer.
PERFORMANCE: Sat, January 19 at 8pm: Nicole Wolcott & Guests / Sarah Chien
WORKSHOP: Sun, January 20 | 12-2pm  FREE! — BE MOVED TO EMBODY DEMOCRACY hosted by The Lovelies
PERFORMANCE: Thurs, January 24 at 8pm: G^2 / BREAKTIME / Laurel Synder / The Lovelies / Site Project
PERFORMANCE: Fri, January 25 at 8pm: The Lovelies / Site Project
PERFORMANCE: Sat, January 26 at 8pm: The Lovelies / Site Project
WORKSHOP: Sun, January 27 | 2-4pm  FREE! – Who is this body? hosted by Laurel Snyder
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A Night of Experimental Jazz & Lydia Lunch at the Park Church Co-Op

Lydia Lunch performs, speaking about misogyny and today’s pessimistic world. Photo: Angelica Hill

Last Thursday, artist Martynka Wawrzyniak hosted “A Night of Experimental Jazz & Lydia Lunch” at the Park Church Co-Op (129 Russell Street) to support her McGolrick Park community art installation, Ziemia.  Ziemia, when finished, will consist of a large ceramic orb made from soil from across the globe and placed in a carefully cultivated meadow in McGolrick Park, adjacent to Russell Street between Nassau Ave and Driggs Ave.

The Park Church Co-Op was dimly lit, the stage awash with red and blue light. Meditative electronic new-age music played as the image of Jesus on the crucifix centered on the back wall looked over the scene. It may not seem like the most likely venue for a night of experimental jazz, but Pastor Amy Kienzle remarked that this event was part of the church’s larger event series that supports community art. And with Wawrzyniak being such an enthusiastic member of the church she felt it was important to support. She added that the church “believes in art and it being spiritually beneficial.” Continue reading

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Sweet Megg & The Wayfarers Bring Hot Jazz to Greenpoint Every Other Friday

Sweet Megg & the Wayfarers performing at The Standard Hotel.
Sweet Megg & the Wayfarers performing at The Standard Hotel.

With her hair pulled back, dressed in a spaghetti-strap deep plunge little black dress, a double strand of pearls, and a shimmering vintage ring-to-wrist bracelet, Sweet Megg looks like she is visiting us from the Prohibition era that shapes her music. Her voice envelops the room and invokes that same decadent, idealistic atmosphere as she and her Wayfarers perform (Up) a Lazy River to a buzzing audience at the Top of the Standard on a Saturday night.

Last week, Sweet Megg & the Wayfarers added a fifth residency to their calendar by performing their hot jazz, blues, and swing at Le Fanfare in Greenpoint, where they will play every first and third Friday of each month from 8:30-10:30pm. Every Thursday, they will host a weekly jam session at Amancay’s Diner in Bushwick. Their first record, Please Tell Me Everyone’s in Love, was released last summer.

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