This year's installment of The Animation Show (reviewed here), opening July 4 at the Landmark Midtown Art Cinema, features a charming little cartoon called "Western Spaghetti," the latest cartoon confection from the animator PES (Adam Pesapane). "Western Spaghetti" is another of the animator's stop-motion, doodle-like shorts that involves candy or other foodstuffs substituting for familiar objects: in the 11-second "The Fireplace," PES renders a Yule log in candy corn and pretzels. A previous Animation Show featured "Game Over," PES' tribute to old-school arcade video games, with familiar sound effects:
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PES's fun food-related shorts are completely work safe and kid-friendly which is more than you can say for his hilarious "Roof Sex," which features furniture instead of food, as well as a killer punchline.
1) Fiona Zedde (pictured) reads Hungry For It at Charis Books & More.
2) Los Angeles duo No Age performs at Eyedrum Art & Music Gallery.
3) Hector Manuel Sagunto continues at Art Space International.
4) The Five Spot hosts the 4th of U-Lie concert, featuring NY Oil, Ishues, Stacy Epps and more.
5) APEX Museum screens its July Movies with a Mission, The Lion Mountains: A Journey Through Sierra Leone History.
(Photo by Monica Holder)
Actor's Express production of Hedwig and the Angry Inch in this weeks issue, and while I believe theres room for improvement, it remains an impressive production. And as I stated in my review, one of the reasons why watching Hedwig is such a compelling experience is because John Cameron Mitchells collaboration with Stephen Trask is the most authentic stage rendering of rock music youll ever witness. (And before we continue, I dont count Tommy in this mix; the Whos rock opera started out as an album.)
There are a lot of reasons for this, some of which speak to how audiences both gay and straight related to both traditional musical theater and rock n roll. The best thing about Hedwig and the Angry Inch is how it can unite all theater-going (and some non-theater-going) audiences.
In the world according to Jay Louis, there's no such thing as too many douchebags. No, not the countless politicos that Jon Stewart likes to skewer on "The Daily Show," but the tatted-up, hair-spiked, shiny-foreheaded, six-pack-packed, hand-symbol-thrusting, shades-sporting, wife-beater-wearing, tongue-thrusting, hand-gesturing and pec-bearing American men who somehow wind up with really attractive women in living color.
Hot Chicks with Douchebags, in which he and alert readers hip the rest of us "normal" folk to the cheesily over-packaged American men hanging out with women who would seem way out of their league. As popular as the site is, the next logical step would seem to be a book, Hot Chicks with Douchebags (Simon Spotlight Entertainment), which fell into our reluctant hands this week and will hit bookstores July 8. The book's thesis seems simple enough:
In this book, we will identify every type of bag within the douche spectrum, from the youthful stage-1 Fratbags to the polluted, noxious stage-4 DJ Club Douche. We will tap directly into the core of not only how douchebaggery manifests, but also how it corrupts the hottie within its wily, greased-up charms. These unnatural cohabitations must be exposed to the disinfecting light of detailed scrutiny if we have any hope of societal redress.
If you haven't seen this already, I predict you're going to see this everywhere. It's a music video for the song "Toe Jam" by The BPA, a pseudonym for Fat Boy Slim, featuring vocals from David Byrne and Dizzee Rascal. If the treadmill choreography of OK Go's "Here It Goes Again" could turn that clip into a viral sensation, "Toe Jam's" use of strategically placed censor bars over unclad bodies check out the "Pong" game should break records. It's sort of like Busby Berkeley meets Boogie Nights. Not technically work safe or is it? Catchy beat and fun vocals (and a surprising f-bomb) from Byrne, too:
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A higher-res version is here.
Al Stilo, director of sales & marketing for Lawrencevilleâs Aurora Theatre (and a reliably entertaining actor in his own right) sent me an e-mail about Auroraâs season finale, Michael Frayn's Noises Off, which the theater has extended through June 1. Al acknowledged that I tend to favor edgy theatrical fare, but said:
"Edginess is relative however, and I hope that I can tempt you to attend Noises Off by letting you know you will be attending the first production in Aurora Theatre history to feature the f-word. Doesnât that seem worth the drive?"
Aurora is billing Noises Off as âthe greatest farce ever written,â and while thatâs a bold statement that encompasses centuries of theater history, I have trouble thinking of a farce thatâs better constructed or more ingenious. Famed critic Frank Rich called and said that it "is, was, and probably always will be the funniest play written in my lifetime." Auroraâs cast includes Megan Hayes (pictured), Robert Egizio and Jeff McKerley, and the combination certainly sounds worth the drive.
Although Frayn is probably best known for Noises Off, two of my favorite Frayn works are a little more scholarly. His cerebral historical drama Copenhagen dramatizes a 1941 meeting with Danish physicist Niels Bohr and his German protege, Werner Heisenberg, and concerns Nazis, atom-smashing and the morality of science in war-time. One of my favorite recent novels is Headlong, Fraynâs hilarious account of a blocked writer who grows obsessed with the possibility that his neighbor unwittingly owns an undiscovered Brueghel painting worth a fortune. Itâs the kind of thoughtful and funny book I feel confident recommending to practically anyone.
(Photo courtesy of Aurora Theatre)
It's obviously the best way to get readers attention, and this time we here at PopSmart would like to walk the walk, so to speak, and offer free sex â or, more accurately, the new cartoon anthology Sex and Sensibility: Ten Women Examine the Lunacy of Modern Love â¦ in 200 Cartoons (Twelve) (released April 2). Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org, and I'll be happy to provide free copies of the coffee-table book to the first 10 who contact me.
The collection, edited by frequent New Yorker contributing cartoonist Liza Donnelly, is a far-ranging offering of female artists' takes on women and sex in the New Millennium. Often insightful, usually funny and sometimes downright strange, Sex and Sensibility proves that when it comes to sex, the fairer sex gets the last laugh more often than we think. It's a breezy slice of feminist empowerment.
The phenomenon of female cartoonists is a relatively new one, Donnelly writes in her introduction: "While women can â and have for generations â painted and sculpted in the privacy of their studios, women cartoonists have had a tough road. The cartoonist has to be aware of what others find funny, and work with that while staying true to the cartoonist's voice. And, to be published, the cartoonist has to be aware of the editor's sense of humor. Historically, magazine editors have been men, who upheld tradition in most cases."
Do people remember the instant classic clip that Sarah Silverman debuted on the talk show of her boyfriend, Jimmy Kimmel? Well, apparently on a special post-Oscars broadcast last night, Kimmel responded in kind, and it's very, very funny as well:
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So in this war of viral videos, who's the winner? (Spoilers follow)
This clip has been rocketing around the Internets so fast that by the time you see this, you've probably already seen it. It's probably going to be 2008's equivalent to the viral video clip "D--- in a Box" from "Saturday Night Live," so who am I to impede its life in the ether? It's almost certainly Not Safe for Work.
Incidentally, in case you don't know these people, Sarah Silverman is a spectacularly raunchy comedian (see her concert film Jesus Is Magic) and the longtime girlfriend of late, late night talk-show host Jimmy Kimmel, who recently celebrated his fifth anniversary on the air.
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(Photo by Jim Stawniak)
Atlanta-based actor/writer/performance artist Scott Turner Schofield brings his new one-man show, Becoming a Man in 127 Easy Steps, to Little Five Points' 7 Stages from Jan. 31-Feb. 3. It's entirely possible that the title is both playful and literal, since Schofield, formerly Kt Kilborn, is a woman-to-man transgender artist and his energetic, accessible work explores his personal transition. Reportedly he lowers himself from the ceiling to begin a show that he calls, "a roller coaster ride through your heart, your soul, and your genitals!"
I wrote the Creative Loafing cover story "I Changed My Sex. Now What?" on Schofield in 2006, and found him to be not only extremely likable, but a candid, illuminating guide through transgender issues, which can have mazelike complexities. Following his previous one-man shows Underground TRANSit and Debutante Balls, Becoming a Man in 127 Easy Steps promises to be another funny, revealing portrayal of one of Atlanta's most interesting personalities. The performance also comes in advance of Schofield's new book, Two Truths and a Lie, due to be published this winter.
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