1. the announcement
Fourth Surreal Cabaret at the Seligmann Center
The fourth Surreal Cabaret, featuring performance art, multi-media, and other avant-garde techniques will be presented at 7:30 on Friday, June 13 in the Kurt Seligmann Studio, 23 White Oak Drive, Sugar Loaf. The event is free and open to the public.
The program will open as usual with a benediction from the Surrealist chaplain, the Lama Swine Toil. Music will be provided by the New Jersey experimental ensemble ArtCrime. Acts include a rap by Anne Hanson, the Council of (Poetic) Experimentation doing “Genet Discordia,” William Seaton’s “Party,” and Susanna Rich singing two songs from her one-woman musical Shakespeare’s *itches: the Musical.
The Cabarets provide a rare opportunity for Hudson Valley residents to see exciting new work by area artists using cutting edge practices. “We pay tribute to Surrealist Kurt Seligmann in a way I suspect he would have approved – by showcasing new vision.” says producer William Seaton.
As in the past artist David Horton has created a poster for the Cabaret.
2. the program
Lama Swine Toil "Benediction"
The Surrealist chaplain will seek to save the lost and to convince the saved to lose themselves.
CO(P)E "Genet Discordia/Bird of Paradise"
Featuring Steve Roe’s voice, Dan Andreana’s video, Al Margolis, Kevin Geraghty, and Detta Andreana on sound. The Council of (Poetic) Experimentation is an art collective dedicated to the performance and publication of experimental works. Their most recent publication is War Stories.
Anne Hanson "The Panther and the Butterfly"
A poem transformed into a rap, sort of falling between the two. Anne Hanson is known to Hudson Valley audiences as a poet and storyteller.
William Seaton "Party"
Unspoken conversations, the subterranean levels of a social gathering, find utterance. Actors are Ingrid King, Jim Kenny, & Patricia Seaton. William Seaton is the producer of the Surreal Cabarets. He maintains a blog at williamseaton.blogspot.com.
Susanna Rich "Nicole's Song"
This song from the one-woman show Shakespeare’s *itches marks the twentieth anniversary of Nicole Brown Simpson's death.
Also from Shakespeare’s *itches, Kate the Shrew as a contemporary bartender. For more information on Susanna Rich’s performances, books, and other activities see susannarich.com or wildnightsproductions.com.
John Korchok, Steve Orbach, and Bob Siebert perform as ArtCrime, New Jersey’s outstanding experimental ensemble. With backgrounds in jazz, rock, and experimental music, the instrumentalists of ArtCrime create entirely new, often improvisatory music. See http://www.art-crime.net/.
3. the poster by David Horton
4. the words of the Lama Swine Toil
The Parable of the not-OK Corral
He walked the dusty, sun-baked streets of a town
on the far frontier of metaphysics.
His faithful Indian companion whispered sutras in his ear.
The townspeople hustled off to shelter behind the nearest received ideas.
The tumbleweeds blew, and the buzzards cried out wise suggestions ,
but he never heard and just stared straight ahead.
At the street’s opposite end, walking slowly toward him, was his enemy,
his brother, his mirror-image.
(And the town’s pretty schoolmarm walked an identical street
at that very moment, facing a Doppelgänger of her own,
her foot like his poised seeking the next step,
and neither could help it at all.)
The sweat dripped down his cheek.
The Avidya Boys, he knew, were crouching in doorways,
leaning from second-story windows,
and the gang from the Hungry Ghost Ranch,
covered him from every angle.
The clock ticked on toward the highest of high noons
when time, that old codger, will expire, as did Gabby Hayes in 1969.
Suddenly he heard from behind the voice of the kosmos, deep and unmistakable,
“Drop your ego on the ground right there, I’ve got you covered. “
And he knew the jig was finally up.
To be performed by four actors, dispersed throughout the room. The lights should be out as the monologues are unspoken. Art the Cabaret performance, the audience was told they might close their eyes.
1st speaker: How can it be that everyone is talking to someone with the sole exception of me. I can hardly continue staring at the book titles much longer. Oh, how to assume an insouciant air as I sit outside the gate, listening to the self-satisfied buzz of all the drones? I sit discomfited on rocks, so harsh a seat alone, a tragic pariah, unrecognized, unappreciated, like the finest of apples, too high on the tree, pecked by mindless birds, exposed to wind and rain and merciless fate. The fallen apple is more fortunate, its crisis past, the quick hurtle to meet earth over.
2nd speaker: All is well just now. I think. My dyspepsia has subsided, my portfolio has gained twenty percent this year and yet I haven’t gained more than ten percent in weight. Last time I saw my doctor he said he saw no problems, but that was two weeks ago and I failed to point out that weird blemish in my armpit which online research has indicated could be the sign of any number of serious conditions. Then, too, even darker possibilities may lurk in the bushes, ready to leap like a fierce and mocking panther. My balance sheet will be powerless then. My successful lawsuit will mean nothing. I can only imagine the leap of the predator who is surely there,, the sudden sharp full-body alarm. I can only imagine it again and again until the thought is worse than the reality.
3rd speaker: Oh, god, I haven’t the slightest idea what she has been saying for the past five minutes. It looks like I’m cued to respond. I have perhaps two seconds to devise the best strategy. I am on the edge of a high cliff and I see the rocks below. Vertigo seizes me. Oh, that I might buzz like a fly to the further reaches of the room. Lord, lord, what does that look mean? I am pinned in an album, classified and dessicated, without recourse, but perhaps that is only right. This day, another damp and ruined space of time, to be discarded like a used tissue, capable of inspiring only disgust.
4th speaker: light in room’s corner, groan of outside autos, tremor in the skull, graceful neck flesh incline curve of thigh shaking of a comely arm eruption of energies heading toward a brick wall hurtling on to whammo collision dizzy soft knee whew take a long breath wine rises to brain already fogged by error confusion and willful refusal to see to feel to ----? Buzz of anger yesterday at the bus stop what was the look about? Tomorrow the dentist.
1st speaker: Indeed, I am out of my element. When I lived in California, ah, all was palmy. I flourished in the sun, but here its heat is rude and pushy. These people all think just alike. They grow here rooted to the soil like barnacles to their rock. When will someone ask the question that will free my soul and let it rise and flourish and sing? I am the genie, locked still inside the lamp, pinched by unfair circumstance, awaiting the magic word. I hear the confident rumble of everyone else’s words knowing that my own alone would be garbled and meaningless as though run backwards. My silence is finally my preference.
2nd speaker: O might one feel secure in a grand and hilltop mansion? Or would I then attract lightning, jealousy, angry mobs perhaps? My position is a lofty one, but I gained it through deceit, I maintain it by impersonating a success. The strain is mounting. How can I continue the fraud another day? Another hour? Many eyes see through me, they slyly predict my downfall, indeed perhaps they can cause it. I’m propped up only by my reluctance to let the jackals lick my bones. Yet they advance steadily with sharp intentions in their eyes. I shall take refuge in the toilet. Perhaps it’s time to exit before my stride will be even less graceful than now.
3rd speaker: If only time could pause a moment I might regain my composure, but the ground slips from beneath my feet ever so slightly. I need only a chance to catch up, to rest a moment, to seize time and hold it by the throat and shake it until it gives me what I must have. I could then be master, I could flourish, yet here I am, condemned to run two seconds behind, always regarding my movie with a detached and critical eye and always writing later a most brilliant review which will never see the light of day.
4th speaker: Twinge of envy I am a barely balanced funambulist with no rest on the high tension line buzzing with power, the birds on either side skip and dance, the sun blazes with certainty and power, the other people are far away, all security systems on high alert these past few years, avoid feedback, prick of lust, flash of pale skin, twitter of neural dendrites leap every synapse whee whee mememememememe eeeee