Good Golly Miss Molly!

October 4, 2011 5:00 am0 comments

altMolly Dykeman has the mind of a child genius, the mouth of a moron, and a haircut that looks like Chewbacca got a perm.  And she just may be the smartest person in the room.
Dykeman is a poet and an unlicensed security guard at P.S. 339 in Brooklyn. In between snacking on chicken fingers, avoiding work, and chasing the ladies, Dykeman hops on the subway from her Bay Ridge home to downtown Manhattan to perform her unique form of burlesque poetry for adoring fans blinded by both her sublime use of words and her fluorescent orange safety vest.
While the spirit of Molly is based in people we probably all know, she is a character created by actress and comedian Andrea Alton, who will bring Ms. Dykeman to Provincetown as part of the Bulldyke Chronicles, an evening of edgy and hip lesbian burlesque and comedy at the Art House hosted by downtown New York legend Shelly Mars.  This one-night-only show features characters and acts from Mars, as well as surprise guests, and a special featured spotlight for Molly Dykeman. An evening with Molly is a hilariously compelling night of poetry and performance from a woman with sharp insights dulled by Percocet, cheap beer, and a lazy eye.
Alton enjoyed a sold-out run of her show The F*cking World According to Molly at the New York International Fringe Festival in August, garnering rave reviews.  While Alton has performed in Provincetown before, this marks the debut for Molly.

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REVIEW: Body Awareness

September 29, 2011 3:16 pm0 comments

Anyone who was around in the early 1990s will remember the spread of militant political correctness across college campuses. Antioch College famously codified “sexually correct” rules for its student daters around that time (“May I please touch your breast now?”) and the alarmist rantings of Andrea Dworkin and Catherine MacKinnon plagued the minds of young women, making it a wonder that any healthy heterosexual relationships blossomed during that time at all.
    Though set in the present day, Annie Baker’s play Body Awareness explores the complexities of body politics, feminism, and gender relations that are still contentious issues, particularly in academic circles. Set in the fictional town of Shirley, Vermont, the play works with these issues through a nontraditional family consisting of psychology professor Phyllis (D’Arcy Dersham), her live-in partner Joyce (McNeely Myers), who is a high-school cultural studies teacher, and Joyce’s son, Jared (Alex Pollock). The play begins with Phyllis announcing the start of Body Awareness Week – a week long event she has created ostensibly to help students (female students, it is implied) become more comfortable in their own skin. But when one of the invited guests for the event turns out to be a white male photographer specializing in images of naked women, Phyllis is mortified.

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Team Provincetown, Team P’Town

3:08 pm0 comments

Identity in Provincetown has become such a monumental force that it is worthy of an anthropological study of tribalism. Or it would be a great subject for ridicule. It all depends on what team you’re on. Artist Brian Einersen’s new book P-town Humor features cartoon drawings with a sly sense of humor about some of the more absurd aspects of life in Provincetown, particularly the strong opinions that can plant people firmly in opposing camps.
With a deep interest in pop culture, Einersen tapped into a faux rivalry created by the media as inspiration for the book, which features t-shirts declaring dueling devotions to Provincetown institutions, characters, and locales.
“Back when Brad Pitt left Jennifer Aniston for Angelina Jolie someone created t-shirts saying ‘Team Aniston’ and ‘Team Jolie’,” says Einersen. “The media pits those two against each other. In town there are not so much rivalries, but so many categories, like Team Sunburn and Team Sun Tan. There always seems to be two of everything in Provincetown.”

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The Ballad of Larry Beau

September 28, 2011 2:58 pm0 comments

There is a certain magnetism to Provincetown that deeply pulls at those looking for a new life, to create without restraint, or to simply rest at the end of the road after a long and hard journey. It’s that energy that has drawn thousands of artists and writers to town, and perhaps it is that same force that blew the Pilgrims off course from their intended destination near the mouth of the Hudson River, bringing the Mayflower to what is now Provincetown Harbor.
It was aboard the Mayflower in Provincetown Harbor on November 20, 1620, that Susanna White gave birth to a baby boy, the first child born to the Pilgrims in the “New World.” She named him Peregrine, a name that means “one who journeys to foreign lands” or “wanderer.” It is then indeed appropriate that it’s here in Provincetown that Declan Burke was introduced to Peregrine White, at least the memory of him some 400 years later. Both wanderers, both destined to become part of the mythologically tinged fabric of Provincetown.

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Around the World in Seven Days

2:45 pm0 comments

 Swedish filmmaker Ingmar Bergman once said, “ No art passes our conscience in the way film does, and goes directly to our feelings, deep down into the dark rooms of our souls.” The power of the cinema is not restricted to the feature-length films that dominate movie theater screens across the country. The often-neglected cousin of the feature film is the short, but this week, Outer Cape audiences have the opportunity to celebrate short form films of nearly every genre at a satellite screening of the New York-based Manhattan Short Film Festival.
“It’s everyone’s party around the world,” according to Festival director Nicholas Mason. Indeed, not only are the ten films to be shown representative of numerous countries (Canada, U.S., Scotland, Hungary, Egypt, Switzerland, Peru, Sweden, and Australia), but one of these films will be named the winner of the Manhattan Short Film Festival competition, based on the votes of audiences in over 200 cities spanning six continents, within the space of this week only.
Mason says it is particularly valuable to have “regular” people vote for the winning film because when filmmakers and others involved in the film world judge film festivals, “they tend to like the films they were involved with.”

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And the Winner is….

September 21, 2011 6:55 pm0 comments

It’s awards season in Provincetown! At the end of the summer two cultural institutions in Provincetown, Showgirls and Fag Bash, crown a queen that best represents the ideals of the two most popular events in town. So while Miss Angola won the Miss Universe Pageant this week, here are Provincetown’s latest title holders!

The 7,567th Annual Showgirls Awards
Monday, September 12  – The Crown and Anchor

The Showgirls 2011 season closed with the annual awards, Penny Champayne’s candlelight rendition of Stevie Nicks’ “Landslide,” a beautiful original song by twin brother and sister Grace and John Carney, and an encore performance by Ryan Landry of his parody of “Total Eclipse of the Heart” as “I Totally Sh*t When I Fart.” In all it was a banner evening!

Showgirl of the Year 2011
Liza Lott

Grace and the Carnivores
Mona Mour
Della Catessen
(Winners are in bold)

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The Claws Are Out!

6:49 pm0 comments

Now in its sixth year, the Provincetown Tennessee Williams Festival continues to surprise, delight, and at times shock audiences with presentations of the master American playwright’s work, both the celebrated and the obscure.  Continuing the tradition of exploring all the corners of Williams’ work, this year’s festival presents Now the Cat with Jewelled Claws.
Written in 1969, Williams’ biographer described the play as “gruesome…a tale of madness, depravity, and death.”  The New York Times called the play, “ a loopy and rather vicious send up of New York society, written in a gleefully absurdist mode….”  In that case, the two stars of this production, Mink Stole and Everett Quinton, are both superbly cast. Both come from rich backgrounds of groundbreaking underground work, in film and theater respectively, with a deep commitment to the absurd, countercultural, and impish behavior befitting a jester with something important to say. 
In the play, two wealthy women, Madge and Bea, are having lunch, served by a flamboyantly gay waiter, when two leathermen walk into the restaurant followed by a violent accident and a song and dance routine.  In this celebration of Williams’ experimental work, the casting of Stole and Quinton, two actors who were part of creative movements that shook the artistic world into a new direction, brings a vibrant energy to an almost forgotten work. After its Provincetown run, the production moves to La MaMa in New York from October 27 to November 13.

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Hooray for Hairy Hollywood! On the set of Bear City 2

6:47 pm0 comments

On a sparklingly perfect late summer day, as schooners race on the horizon and swimmers cross Provincetown Harbor in the Swim for Life, several big, burly, and hairy men take to the breakwater surrounded by cameras, a boom, and at least a dozen crew members in constant motion. The calendar might say that it’s September, but the script says it’s July – more specifically, Bear Week.
For more than two weeks ending on September 23, a full production team has been filming Bear City 2 the sequel to 2010’s Bear City, a hirsute hit film that took Sex and the City into a bear’s den! The romantic comedy about a group of bears in New York City follows the ups and downs of finding true love, self-acceptance, and community in a gay subculture that continually redefines concepts of beauty, self-esteem, and personal expression. The first Bear City distinguished itself as one of the first feature films about the bear community to be not just a hit with bears, but to attract mainstream attention with high praise from critics (“Warm, funny, thoughtful… a triumph in the audience-appeal category.” -The New York Times), collecting awards at the Oslo International Film Festival (Norway), the Andalucía Film Festival (Spain), as well as at Outfest in Los Angeles, the Long Island Gay and Lesbian Film Festival, and the St. Louis LGBTQ Film Festival.

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Unraveling the Myth of Small Town America in The Common Swallow

6:35 pm0 comments

altKaren, a New York City woman, returns to her midwestern hometown to find that she isn’t the only one who has changed. As the fabric of her family begins to unravel and the idyllic idea of the American Heartland is exposed as fiction, the characters in the new play The Common Swallow find that there are more questions than answers as the American identity fades away from optimism to befuddlement. This dramatic comedy by celebrated emerging playwright David Caudle is making its world premiere at Town Hall this week, starring Sean Maddox, Angela C. Howell, Ethan Paulini, Sunie Pope, Justin Campbell, and Broadway and film actress Annie Golden.

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In September, the Light Changes. Afterglow: The 1st Provincetown Live Performance Arts Festival

September 14, 2011 7:43 pm0 comments

Ever since Charles Hawthorne founded the Cape Cod School of Art in 1899, giving birth to the Provincetown art colony, there has been a robust exchange between the far tips of Cape Cod and Manhattan. A steady stream of visual artists who came for the famous “light,” complemented by droves of writers, actors, and musicians, created a scene in Provincetown that gave birth to some of the most influential artistic, literary, and theatrical movements in America. The town is both a crucible and an incubator of creative thought reliant on the infusion of new ideas blended with the traditions of free expression and experimentation. 
Basking in the famous light is the new Afterglow Festival, a creation of John Cameron Mitchell, of Hedwig and the Angry Inch fame, and Quinn Cox, half of the famed astrological duo Starsky and Cox.  Over five days in mid September, the festival presents 12 of the edgiest performers from New York’s downtown performance scene (as well as Los Angeles and Providence) to Provincetown, while also introducing the art colony to these acts, inviting them to form a creative and personal relationship with the town.

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