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Provincetown Magazine’s Outer Cape Holiday Season Preview

October 26, 2011 6:58 pm0 comments

altJust when you thought it was safe to take a breath and enjoy the peace and serenity that descends onto the Cape after the summer tourists go home, the holiday season thrusts itself upon us. But there will be plenty of time to relax and reflect come January, so you might want to take advantage of some of the arts and entertainment happenings that will take us through the end of the year. We’ve put together some highlights you’ll want to mark on your calendars.
Over at the Provincetown Theater, November is Fall Playwrights’ Festival month. The annual event highlights original plays by local playwrights over two weekends, November 5 – 6 and 11-13. It’s a great chance to attend a reading or two and be among the first to have input on a playwright’s new work.
The Pilgrim Monument and Provincetown Museum also has a lot to offer in November. The Annual Lighting of the Pilgrim Monument happens on Wednesday, November 23, 5 – 7 p.m., and you won’t want to miss this holiday tradition. But also, earlier in the month, on November 11, they will host the Provincetown Pilgrim Party: Special Postal Cancellation for the 390th Anniversary of the Pilgrim’s First Thanksgiving at 1p.m.
At Art House, things have quieted down considerably after a very full summer of performances. This November, Steven Brinberg returns with his hit show Simply Barbra, Thanksgiving Weekend (November 25 – 26), for those of us who were just too busy working to get to see this incredible Barbra Streisand tribute.
The Crown and Anchor plays host to the annual Provincetown Business Guild fundraiser, Casino Night on November 25 and Club Purgatory hosts this year’s Men’s Weekend, a continuation of the former Single Men’s and Meet Your Man weekends, renamed to reflect a new openness to men regardless of their “relationship status.” The weekend takes place November 11 – 13 and features casual events, including a brunch at Bayside Betsy’s, parties at Purgatory, as well as a sing-along with Billy Hough at the Porchside Bar.

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Little Town of Terror: Provincetown in Horror Movies

6:54 pm0 comments

altAs the nights grow longer and Halloween approaches, there is perhaps no better way to get in the mood than to light the candle in the jack o’lantern, invite some friends over, and watch a scary movie.  If it’s something wicked with a local tie that you are looking for then you’re in luck, as Provincetown has featured prominently in several classic horror films. While a horror movie has yet to be filmed or set in Provincetown, these frightening films will add chills and thrills with a little local color to any fright night

The Flesh Eaters

This low-budget 1964 film directed by Jack Curtis is often considered one of the first gore movies ever made. A wealthy, washed up, alcoholic actress named Laura Winters (Rita Morely) has a last chance at reviving her ailing career by taking a summer theater gig in Provincetown. Her perky and dutiful assistant Jan Letterman (Barbara Wilkins) tries to get a very inebriated Ms. Winters to P’town pronto by hiring gruff pilot Grant Murdoch (Byron Sanders) to fly his seaplane from the Hudson River in New York City to Provincetown. The only problem is there is a severe tropical storm that forces them to make an emergency landing near a small, uncharted island (you’ll have to suspend your disbelief that in the 1960’s there could be an unknown island between New York and Cape Cod). The trouble really begins when Professor Peter Bartell (Martin Kosleck), an escaped Nazi, appears. He’s been experimenting with a microbe that devours human flesh. Just how ravenous these tiny creatures are is apparent when they eat a hole through a hippie named Omar (Ray Tudor) whose raft washes him and his bongo drums onto the island. While the movie provides more laughs than screams, horror movie historians note its creativity and artistry considering the small budget, and credit it with influencing the genre, as certain scenes seem strikingly like snippets of future films like Jaws, Silence of the Lambs, and Aliens. But perhaps the most memorable moment of the film comes shortly after the plane splashes down and the doomed castaways come ashore. The drunken actress hiccups and looks around at the deserted island and exclaims, “This isn’t Provincetown!”

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The ‘Black Flash’…The Legend Lives On

6:45 pm0 comments

altIt started with the children. Coming home in tears and shaking, the children of Provincetown told of a monster that frightened them on the way home from school. Something big. Something that growled.  Something all in black. Something that appeared from nowhere and then took off in a flash.  Their parents smiled, gave them hugs and maybe a cookie to calm them down.  But it did little to appease the children’s fears of this ghoulish phantom they knew was lurking somewhere in Provincetown. No matter how hard they insisted that what they saw was not a figment of their imagination, the adults would not believe them. That is until Maria Costa was walking home by herself one night.  Then, some of the townspeople began to believe that maybe the devil had come to Provincetown.
By October in 1939 the summer crowds were long gone. The tourist season ended sharply on Labor Day in those days. By mid-October the town was pretty much only the 4,500 year-rounders and a few stragglers who had not yet returned home after a summer of painting or partying, or both. That’s why no one was around one October night as Miss Costa walked by Town Hall and from out of the bushes an inhumanly tall figure dressed all in black jumped out in front of her. He had glowing blues eyes, big silver ears, and the ability to jump like a gazelle. Costa ran into a coffee shop screaming and several men inside ran down Commercial Street looking for the apparition, but found nothing. The police apparently chuckled after taking a statement from the visibly shaken Costa.  But over the next week, several more residents reported being scared to death when this tall, beastly banshee appeared out of nowhere right in front of them as they walked through town. Some called it the Provincetown Phantom, others the Devil of the Dunes. But the name that stuck was the Black Flash, both because of his long, hooded black cape and his super human ability to run away before anyone could get a good look at the fiend.

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Special Delivery: Poppy Champlin Comes Home to the Post Office Cabaret

October 4, 2011 5:00 am0 comments

altPoppy Champlin has a new attitude, a new address, and a new girlfriend. Things are coming up roses for Poppy.
After 15 years in Los Angeles, Champlin made the move back to her home state of Rhode Island and is finding her niche in the ever competitive field of stand-up comedy.  Ever since leaving LaLa Land she’s been touring the country both with her solo stand up show as well as her Queer Queens of Qomedy, an all-lesbian comedy revue. And this Women’s Week, Champlin is making a homecoming when she plays the Post Office Cabaret, the venue that gave her the break she needed to start her career ten years ago.
“The Post Office was the beginning for me,” says Champlin.  “I am so glad they are having me back. I’m very indebted to them. I can’t say thank you to the Post Office enough.”

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Good Golly Miss Molly!

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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Team Provincetown, Team P’Town

September 29, 2011 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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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
Godiva
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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