Danny Hoch and Joanne Akalaitis are among the names scheduled for March and April shows at Off-Off-Broadway's Performance Space 122.
Also on tap for P.S. 122 are new works by Bette Bourne/Bloolips (beginning May 1) and several dance-theatre works by former members of the Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Dance Company. Perhaps the most unusual piece will be Claude Wampler's Blanket, the surface of her, which opens tonight, April 3, and runs to April 6. In Blanket, the actress invites eight visual artists to tell her what to do for 10 minutes each. "She offers her body as the medium, that is, a 3-D breathing thing ready and willing to carry out any task given to her... She becomes a real time `exquisite corpse'". (The definition given for that phrase is of a folding a piece of paper several times and asking different persons to draw on each fold without looking at the others' work. The paper is then unfolded, revealing the individual sections in a larger context.
Taking her up on the creative offer are installation artists Sylvie Fleury and Julia Sher, photographers Richard Kern and Romaine Slocombe, techno composer Aphex Twin, director Richard Foreman (Pearls For Pigs), conceptual fashion artists Viktor & Rolf, and sculptor/videographer Paul McCarthy.
Hoch, author/performer of the Off-Broadway hit, Some People, is trying out his latest March 31 and April 7, 14, 21. The work is titled A Progress In Work: Evolution Of A Homeboy / Locked Down. Hoch's description of the show: "Ya see, I ain't ya average twenty-somethin grunge type of slacker. I'm not your herb flavor-of-the-month, I ain't no cracker. An actor? Come on now, you know you wanna ask me...I'll use my skin privileges to flag you down a taxi..."
April 17-20, director Joanne Akalaitis will develop a new piece, Tijean Blues: A Work In Progress, based on the life and writings of Jack Kerouac. Akalaitis hopes to capture "the energy of American cities and relentless travel, jazz, drugs and spirituality." Akalaitis, for a season the artistic director of Off-Broadway's Public Theatre, there directed Woyzeck and `Tis Pity She's A Whore. She is currently working with composer Geri Allen on a piece about Louis Armstrong and Lil Hardin. Five actors will appear in this musically-structured piece, intended as a collage of events ranging from Kerouac's childhood to his intense adult neuroses. In this non-linear piece, all the performers take turns playing Kerouac. Tijean Blues is the second Off-Off-Broadway show this season based on the life and works of Jack Kerouac; the musical Kerouac was recently extended to an open run at Theatre East.
P.S. 122, on First Ave and 9th St., will also continue its "Spaghetti Dinner" series, featuring music, satire and fresh cooked pasta.
For more information on P.S. 122 events, call (212) 477-5288.
--By David Lefkowitz