Callaloo, A Mystical Jazz Folklore


(image via Callaloo’s official website)

The lights are dim. The stage is sparsely set. At center, there is cauldron adorned by skulls and bottles of mysterious liquids. IATI Theater’s intimate theater space has been transformed by Claudia McCoy (stage manager) to host “Callaloo,” a mystical jazz folklore.

A shamanic figure (portrayed by Vanessa Evans) enters the stage. Draped in robes and dangling necklaces, she wields a walking stick and paces about, muttering to herself.  “Memories are fragments of past realities,” she utters and blows a puff of magic dust into the audience. Her curious introduction foreshadows a play made of fragmented experiences and dream encounters.

Using her mystical powers, this woman transports Winston, her grandson (portrayed by Marjuan Canady), from the heart of New York City to the Caribbean. This distant place is different from Winston’s home. Here there are powers bigger than him. Now, he is in the supernatural’s domain.

Winston’s grandmother feeds him Callaloo, a potion that induces a series of encounters with various Caribbean folkloric beings. Are these dreams? Are they reality? In a whirlwind created by voiceovers and projections, Winston meets Soucouyant, Dwen, La Diablesse, Papa Bois, Lagahoo and Mama D’lo, each of whom have vital learning experiences in store for him.

This confusing turmoil engulfs Winston and the viewers alike. Before we have a moment to fully realize what’s happening, we’re thrown from one overwhelming encounter to the next. Etienne Charles’ jazz score for the play tugs on our heartstrings as Winston dances his way through each mystical blunder (choreographed by Maresa D’Amore Morrison).

Every creature that Winston meets in his unusual journey teaches him a new moral lesson. La Diablesse, for example, teaches him to not talk to strangers. Papa Bois teaches him to protect the earth. These folkloric beings represent pillars of morality and take root in Caribbean oral culture.

Marjuan Canady wrote and produced “Callaloo” in 2012 as a way to promote the oral culture and folklore of Trinidad and Tobago. In a simpler time, morals and wisdom were shared in communities through storytelling. Now, such messages can be spread through art. “Callaloo” preserves an essential Caribbean tradition for future generations.

“Callaloo” is part of Iati Theater’s annual Performing Arts Marathon (PAM) which features cutting-edge musical acts, theater pieces and dance performances.

For more information about Iati Theater visit www.iatitheater.org.
To learn more about “Callaloo”, visit http://www.callalootheplay.com.

Written by Marketing Intern, Yuliya Skurska.

EVDP FALL REGISTRATION IS NOW OPEN!

EVDP @ FAB! Festival

We at FABnyc are always talking about how the East Village & Lower East Side continues to be a steadfast home for artists and arts groups. As a mecca of experimental, cutting edge arts performance, our neighborhood continues to play an integral role in fostering young artists through groups like Downtown Art, programs like La MaMa Kids, and our very own August Member of the Month, East Village Dance Project (EVDP) – which is currently gearing up for an amazing Fall season of classes!

All ages (2 to 19) are invited to register for Fall 2013 classes in creative technique, ballet, pointe, modern and repertory. Classes run 9/9-12/21 @ Avenue C Studio, 55 Avenue C, and all are suitable for boys & girls. Students will be placed in a level appropriate class.  Pointe classes are by teacher invitation only, and additional adult classes also available. REGISTER HERE.

EVDP based in New York City, was founded in 1997 as a dance development program for youth age 4-18, under the artistic direction of Martha Tornay. EVDP performs annually in New York and has been at La MaMa Moves! for three seasons. EVDP Students have also performed at NYU Skirball Center, Abrons Arts Center, Vanaver Caravan Dance Festival, with Keigwin + Company, and at Lincoln Center Out-of-Doors.

Where did all those red flags come from?

The Kraine

If you hadn’t noticed, East 4th Street between 2nd and Bowery is covered in flags – markers of venues for the annual FringeNYC Festival! If you haven’t had a chance to catch a show on our block at The Kraine Theater, Teatro Circulo, La MaMa’s Ellen Stewart Theater.

This Wednesday is the last day of FringeNYC at La MaMa, so grab your tickets fast if you want to see a show in the Ellen Stewart Theater! Search shows HERE.

 

FAB Field Trip to Far Rockaways

Last Friday, the FAB staff took a field trip to the Far Rockaways to enjoy sand, surf, and Creative Time’s Artist Sandcastle Competition. Despite ominous weather predictions, the competition went off without a hitch. See below for some snapshots from the day!

Creative Castles Panda

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Creative Castles Raft

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Creative Castles Tower

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Creative Castles White Castle

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Creative Castles Oops

Creative Castles Catapult

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Creative Castles Whale

Creative Castles Tropy

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Join us for 12×12 at First Park!

Exhibition | Artist Residency
August 6 – September 1 @ 33 E. 1st Street
Open daily, Tuesday – Sunday from 12-7PM

Exhibition Launch:
August 10, 2013, from 5-7PM

FABnyc, in partnership with World Policy Institute, NYC Parks, and First Street Green, presents WPI’s installation of The 12×12 Project at First Park in Manhattan’s East Village.
Join us for an opening event to kick off the installation on August 10 from 5-7PM.

Originated from the book Twelve by Twelve: A One Room Cabin, Off the Grid & Beyond the American Dream, this exhibition is designed to engage the public in dialogue about how smarter consumption might change their lives-and the planet.

The installation will be open to the public Tuesdays through Sundays from 12:00pm to 7:00pm August 6 through September 1, and will feature artists in residence over the course of four weeks, selected by FABnyc and WPI:

August 6 -11, 2013: Presented by WPI, NYC-based artist Ivy Haldeman will use the 12 x 12 as a space to reflect on the aesthetics of darkness as an indirect means of living sustainably. In opposition to a mentality of 24/7 activity, Ivy will make the 12 x 12 into a place for napping and rest.

August 13 – 18, 2013: Presented by FABnyc, Mario Chamorro, Catalina Parra, and Pablo Gnecco of The Happiness Lab will create social experiments through art within the 12×12 space in order to explore and visualize how people use their own happiness to develop sustainable communities.

August 20 – 25, 2013: Presented by WPI, musician Jonathan Koh will compose music in the 12×12 space, using a combination of classical techniques and synthesizers. His work will contemplate how music can help the listener engage with space and reflect on smart consumption in a small space.

August 27 – September 1, 2013: Presented by FABnyc, NYC-based performance artist Shawn Shafner invites visitors to create their own square patch of latch hook rug, 12 rows across and 12 columns up and down. The last day of the project, the squares will be sewn together, creating a vibrant patchwork and an expression of community collaboration.

Visit http://the12x12project.tumblr.com/ to learn more!

FABnyc is partnering on this 12×12 exhibition as part of our SUSTAIN project, with generous support from the Rockefeller Foundation Cultural Innovation Fund: www.fabnyc.org/sustainability.php

Community update from Cooper Square Committee

NYCHA Rally 3 - July 24 2013

Cooper Square Committee members and staff joined hundreds of tenants who turned out for a rally and public hearing held by the NYC Housing Authority (NYCHA) on July 24th to protest NYCHA plans to lease 18 parcels of land at eight Manhattan

housing projects for luxury housing.

READ MORE about how this affects housing in the LES.

Housing equity is vital to keeping OUR community safe in the LES. 

For ways to get involved, email csc@coopersquare.org or call 212-228-8210.

CONGRATS NUYO!

Nuyo

FABnyc is taking a moment to give a HUGE congratulations to Nuyorican Poets Cafe for securing major funding for upgrades. Daniel Gallant, Executive Director of Nuyo, wrote us:

“Thanks to our elected officials, Nuyo can increase its capacity to serve NYC’s artists, audiences, and students – particularly those from disadvantaged communities – and continue to serve a growing number of constituents for decades to come.”

Read more on CBS!

What’s Going On With Gmail?!? (A special note from FAB)

GMAIL?

If you don’t use Gmail, you can go ahead and skip this message.

But if you do, or your friends do – this info may be illuminating about new Gmail features that may have you feeling a bit confused. Big thanks to University Settlement for sending this along and letting us pass on the message!  Read HERE:
 
A little context…  
Gmail recently launched a new “tabbed inbox” system. It is being rolled out in phases, so you may already know what we’re talking about. If not, you’ll see it appear soon. They have (or will) split your inbox into 5 separate inboxes all tabbed across the top with the labels “Primary, Social, Promotions, Updates, and Forums.”
 
So what does this mean for you and your favorite arts and cultural organizations?
A lot of emails will end up in a tab marked “Promotions” or “Updates” – even if they are things you’re really interested in. With so much clutter, it will be easy to miss important content from your favorite arts and community groups – and no one wants that to happen!

Good news is – we have your solution to tabbed inboxes!
If you use Gmail, look at your account to confirm that the new tabbed inboxes have been turned on (you’ll see new labels across the top of your emails). If so, here’s how to ensure you’re seeing exactly what you’ve asked to see:
1.    Click on the Promotions or Updates inbox tabs.
2.    Drag any emails from people or organizations that you want to hear from and drop them onto   the tab that says Primary. Then, when it asks if you want future emails to go into your Primary inbox, just click yes!

For the next few weeks, as Gmail continues to implement these new tabbed inboxes, be sure to check your additional inboxes to ensure that nothing else you really want ends up there.

Note: Some people might want to totally turn off their tabbed inboxes. To do that, just click on the Settings “gear” image in the upper right corner of your inbox and select “Settings.” Click the “Inbox” tab and uncheck all categories except “Primary” and save your changes.

 

Bright Highs, Cool Lows – Sarah King at IATI’s PAM Festival

“Smile even though your heart is aching. Smile, even though it’s breaking,” Americana singer Sarah King sweetly croons, opening her set in IATI Theater’s intimate and newly finished concert hall. Performing a capella, King performs a jazz standard without aural distractions, soothing all with a voice so richly complex. Seamlessly, King transitions between bright highs and cool lows, a range that is at once broad, warm and smooth.

sarahk

Evoking an Ella-esque charm, King pulls out a ukulele to accompany herself, confessing that the transition from cumbersome guitar to tiny ukulele still throws off her balance. Nevertheless, she maintains her stead, and continues to command the stage with the silliness of a kindergartener and the poise of an experienced performer.

Mid-way through a song, King realizes she has neglected to plug in her uke. The whole room chuckles, but quickly quiets as a fuller sound transforms the space, so much so that King must remove her shoes. There is a felt bond between audience and performer–we no longer sit in a dimly lit room and passively enjoy King’s song, but experience her performance alongside her. Finding content in her selection of solo works, she ushers an 8 piece band to the stage. Then things got literally wild.

Plunging into a jazz-funk fusion, the band’s presence brought out a side of King only hinted at in her solo performance. Carefree child turned sultry jazz vixen, commanding a wall of sound–a show that began in near stillness is now an ecstatic burst of energy.

The band (drums, bass, hand percussion, trumpet, trombone, bass sax, regular sax, guitar and Miss King’s voice and ukulele) is professional, well-rehearsed, and has a tight horn section. The band began as a collaboration between King and multi-instrumentalist Jose Conde. This performance was the band’s debut.

Sarah King’s concert at IATI Theater marks the second night of the venue’s annual Performing Arts Marathon (PAM). This year’s PAM lineup features an eclectic grouping of talented and innovative performers, including Cloud of Fools Theater Company (Europa) , Marjuan Canady (Callaloo: A Jazz Folktale). The program ranges from dance to theater to interdisciplinary arts. For a full schedule listing and ticketing, visit the PAM website. To follow Sarah King’s performance schedule and stream selections from her upcoming demo EP, visit her website.

 

1st Annual MoRUS Film Fest

The Museum of Reclaimed Urban Space (MoRUS) is a preservation center for the East Village’s rich history of grassroots movements. The museum provides tours of abandoned buildings and vacant lots in the area that have been transformed into vibrant living spaces and thriving community gardens by dedicated locals. MoRUS allows New Yorkers and tourists alike to glimpse into a world only known by savvy residents of East Village.

On August 3rd, MoRUS opens its week-long 1st Annual MoRUS Film Fest. In light of this year’s theme, “reclaimed space,” film screenings will be held in various “reclaimed” community gardens of the Lower East Side.

Films include:

Your House is Mine
Squat or Rot
Tompkins Square Park: Operation Class War on the Lower East Side
Heart of Loisaida, directed by Marci Reaven and Beni Matias (details)
Viva Loisaida, directed by Marlis Momber
L.E.S., directed by Coleen Fitzgibbon (trailer)
B/Side, directed by Abigail Child (details)
Not For Sale, directed by Yael Bitton (details)
More Than Flowers, directed by Laura Beer (details)
Loisaida, Avenue C, directed by Maeva Aubert (details)
7th Street (trailer)
Landlord Blues, directed by Jacob Burckhardt (details)
No Picnic, directed by Phil Hartman (details)

1st Annual MoRUS Film Fest
August 3 – August 10, 2013
Held at various “reclaimed” LES sites
All access pass only $20

For a full schedule, ticket info and more click here.