Sometimes you can judge a book by its cover. The Bantam Book Trade Paperback, "Rants, Raves And Monologues From Today's Top Performance Artists" is exactly that: 30 pieces from top solo artists on the Off and Off-Off-Broadway scene. Included in the volume, edited by Mark Russell (no, not the piano-playing satirist, the P.S. 122 artistic director and satirist), are monologues by Laurie Anderson, Eric Bogosian, Spalding Gray, Holly Hughes, Denis Leary, John Leguizamo, Deb Margolin, the late Ethyl Eichelberger and others. Although the book was published Dec. 15, 1996, Russell, who's headed P.S. 122 since 1983, will be at Barnes & Noble on Astor Place tonight, April 24. From 7:30-8:30 PM he'll sign copies of "Rants, Raves And Monologues" and also read some passages from the work. Also reading or appearing will be contributors Penny Arcade, David Cale (recently on Broadway in Present Laughter), Richard Elovich, James Godwin, Danny Hoch (The Flatted Fifth), Ishmael Houston-Jones, Deb Margolin, Dael Orlandersmith and Nicky Paraiso.
Those who can't get down to Astor Place for the event can order the book through the Barnes & Noble there -- (212) 420-1322 -- or order directly from Bantam at (800) 223-5780.
--By David Lefkowitz