Sunday, August 16, 2009

Hearts of Marketing

Considering the state in which we pulled into the city, yesterday was a pretty full, successful day. After running to the space and back Harris, Max and I walked - on Park Avenue - almost the entire way back up the avenue, more leisurely this time, with a stroller. Just another couple out for a walk with their three year-old. We met Liz for lunch and I headed out for FringeTEASERS.

Josh & Kelly phoned to say they, and the event's MC, were having great difficulty finding the space, it was tucked into a playground/b-ball court betwixt 6th Ave and Greenwich. By the time I got there I got to meet said MC Eva Dean and helped her and her assistant schlep a great, big fiberglass ball up the street.

The event itself was great fun, we got to see short pieces from a number of shows I would like to create the opportunity to see. However, it did seem as though we were only performing for each other, Fringe performers only.

Some acts did their piece and headed out, we chose to stay and see all the performances - which led Eva to ask me to fill in for someone who had not arrived. I had the distinct feeling the assembled were thinking, "oh no not him again" but then again, they were all seated in the sun under 80 degree heat. I kept using a microphone that didn't actually work. I felt kind of wonky and unsure. No surprise there.

Leah caught up with us and the four of us had Chinese before heading to the CSV Cultural and Educational Center to see EGG FARM. A two-man, evil clown show (complete with bowlers) EF is about some post-apocalyptic time when humanity's only hope is gene-splicing themselves to the last-living chicken. Very Fringy! Lots of songs and great movement pieces. And I know evil clown shows.

Josh hung around to watch THE DOCTOR AND THE DEVILS while Leah showed me around the Bowery until it was time for the VARIETY POWER HOUR. It was a little weird at first, the guy at the door (I think he worked for Tanqueray, not for the Fringe, I can't be sure) was confused when we and some drag queens arrived at 10.30. The show didn't start until eleven. But we'd been asked to arrive early. And the MC couldn't be found. Eventually he let us in anyway, and Leah and I tried to discuss how I was going to possibly be funny in an interview session, if the need arose.

Unfortunately, we both got bogged down in a deep, introspective treatise about my show and what it means. Interesting. Meaningful. Not funny.

When the doors opened - still no MC, apparently - we were told we could move to the lunge one flight down, which is where the free gin was, and sandwiches. Folks started arriving, networking, passing out postcards, having a good time. I still didn't understand where the act was going to be - or how they were going to record it for a podcast.

Then they announced the show was about the begin - downstairs. Another downstairs! A sub-basement! Cool!

The show was great fun. I am, I hate to admit this, not much of a late-night person anymore. And I had gotten scant rest the night before, and run six miles, and blah blah blah, I hoped I would hold out. I was delighted to find it was a real high-intensity and hilarious evening.

The regular MC, Charlie, was held up on a train for an hour. His surrogates made an excellent substitute while he was away ... the show was not just a selection of five minute performances, but brief interviews promoting the shows, and some energetic, semi-improvised party games for which, as they say, you had to be there. (Seen at right: Bollywood Dance Number.)

I went last, which was nerve-rattling as I was under the impression that of all the pieces mine was the lowest-keyest and least outrageous ... well, except for the urination and implied bestiality. I am interested to hear how the podcast turns out, I felt like every interview question they asked I said "I dunno," first, and then they restated the question so I had the chance to think of something clever.

Which was very nice, when you think about it.

Spring St. Station, 6 Train, in bed by 2.30 am. I (Heart) NY.

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