Obie-winning performance artist and Downtown darling John Kelly's show Shiny Hot Nights: More Songs of Joni Mitchell, has extended at Fez, the night spot located in the bowels of the Village's Time Cafe. The show will now play through Jan. 12.
The evening is a follow-up to Kelly's 1997 effort, Paved Paradise: The Songs of Joni Mitchell. In both, he impersonates and sings the songs of Mitchell, the ethereal blonde pop artist behind such songs as "Woodstock," "Big Yellow Taxi," "Help Me," "Free Man in Paris" and "For the Roses" (from whence comes the title of the current evening).
Mitchell is only one of the many eccentric artists Kelly has embodied over the years. Others includes Dagmar Onassis, artist Egon Schiele and transvestite trapeze artist Barbette. As usual in his performance pieces—which he typically writes and creates—Kelly goes beyond impersonation and attains a sort of empathetic spiritual connection with the figures—all of whom he seems to identify with and adore. His work, which has been seen at BAM, Lincoln Center, The Kitchen and Carnegie Hall, has won him two Obies.
To conventional Broadway audiences, Kelly is best known the Irish tenor who is an honored guest at the holiday soiree in James Joyce's The Dead. (Kelly is possesses of a fine, if fragile, countertenor voice, which he often uses to striking effect in his shows.)
John Kelly, an autobiography published by 2wice Foundation and distributed by Aperture Books, was recently release in bookstores nationwide. All tickets are $20. Shiny Hot Nights: More Songs of Joni Mitchell runs Saturdays through Jan. 12 and Sundays Nov. 18 - Dec. 9 with an additional performance Dec. 3. Fez is located at 380 Lafayette Street (at Great Jones). For information and reservations call (212) 533-2680.
—By Robert Simonson