The Tom Murrin Full Moon Performance Festival Is Coming

From APRIL 17 – APRIL 27, 2014 LaMama will present THE TOM MURRIN FULL MOON PERFORMANCE FESTIVAL, Curated and organized by: Murrin’s friends and associates Scott Adkins, Laurie Berg, Erin Courtney, John Gernand, Sarah Maxfield, Lucy Sexton, and Murrin’s wife, Patricia Sullivan and featuring performances and appearances by Jonathan AmesKate BensonSteve Buscemi, Erin Courtney, Diana Y. Greiner and Heidi Dorow, Karen Finley, Annie Iobst, Mike Iveson, David Levine, Lumberob, Salley May, Jennifer Miller, Brooke O’Harra and Sharon Hayes, Nicky Paraiso, Peculiar Works, Radiohole, Gary Ray, Saint Fortune, Chris Tanner, and others.

If you didn’t have the great good fortune to know and work with Tom Murrin, it is hard to convey what an extraordinary person he was. Tom was possibly the single greatest embodiment of radical generosity you can imagine. He veritably radiated openness, positivity and laughter. In his life and in his art – which were virtually inseparable – Tom embraced the character of the trickster and the wise fool, he surfed reality and invited the cosmic perspective into every moment of his existence. When Tom was around you could hear God laughing with us, not at us, and it felt good. He found transcendence in trash, he was bawdy and beatific all at once. And even as NYC becomes irrevocably changed, the greatest tribute we can offer to our memories of Tom – and the greatest gift we can give our fellow artists – is to honor his spirit and try and keep it alive in each one of us as we move through the world.

For ten days The Tribe of Tom will celebrate his life and memory by summoning his energy back into this world. Join the tribe, gather your brothers and sisters, and howl ecstatically as we offer ourselves up to the Goddess of the Full Moon.

From the press release:

The centerpiece of the festival will be productions and readings of Murrin’s provocative, political, and surreal comic plays. La MaMa will present two full productions of Murrin’s most engaging plays in the First Floor Theatre as well as a series of readings from his trove of shorter works in The Club. The Festival will include an intimate afternoon with theCoffeehouse Chronicles discussing Murrin’s work and its place in New York avant-garde theater history, and will also feature an exhibition at La MaMa Galleria highlighting the full range of Murrin’s work—his hand-painted masks, collages, and paintings. A Full Moon Show and screenings of his street performance videos will round out this extravaganza offering audiences a look at his unique brand of performance art, work so committed and imaginative that it bordered on shamanistic possession. The festival will include a series of street performances and will culminate in a parade inviting newcomers to participate in Murrin’s legacy—a love letter to the New York City streets and to his everlasting muse, Luna Macaroona.

Tom Murrin (1939–2012) was best known as a pioneering performance artist of the East Village scene, turning trash into treasure in his uniquely entertaining shows. But he began as one of the first generation of La MaMa playwrights and continued to write and present plays throughout his life. His influence on generations of artists spanning theater, performance art, and dance was profound and continues today.

FULL PRODUCTIONS

Cock-Strong

Saint Fortune

April 1719 (Thursday and Friday at 7:30pm, Saturday at 2pm and 7:30pm)

La MaMa First Floor Theatre

Tickets: $20 

Buy tickets here

Experience the death of heteronormativity at the hands (and mouths) of Saint Fortune. Recommended for all fans of risqué song, topsy-turvy dance, wildly oscillating character-choices and, of course, sex. Because that’s what it’s really all about, isn’t it? The New York theater collective revives Murrin’s provocative musical Cock-Strong, featuring brand new arrangements of all of Murrin’s immortal tunes including “Old One-Eye,” “One for One (Isn’t that Peculiar?),” and “Get It Up.” Described as “vulgar… and irresistibly stirring” (The Village Voice) when it premiered at La MaMa in 1969, the play is structured as a series of tableaux and 15 songs, with all new music written and arranged by Saint Fortune, and featuring Murrin’s classic lyrics. Performed by a cast of ten actors and musicians. Bring the whole family!

Myth or Meth (or Maybe Moscow?)

Radiohole

April 2427 (Thursday to Saturday at 7:30pm, Sunday at 2:30pm and 5pm)

La MaMa First Floor Theatre

Tickets: $20

Buy tickets here

The performance group Radiohole, one of New York’s most uncompromising experimental ensembles, presents Myth orMeth (or Maybe Moscow?). In a shack somewhere on the steppe of Missouri three sisters drink Coke®, eat hamburgers, fend off the local romantic axe-wielding WWI vet, and carry on the family business selling sweet jam. But the hamburgers aren’t great and they long to return to their childhood home Moscow. Or Port-au-Prince. Or whatever. When their Pa unexpectedly returns from Juárez by way of Sebastopol, hungry and spouting neoliberal ideology, the shit really hits the fan. Myth or Meth (or Maybe Moscow?) features Radiohole’s first-ever all-male (more or less) cast with Radiohole founders Eric Dyer and Scott Halvorsen Gillette along with Jim Findlay, Ilan Bachrach, Jon Okabayashi, Ryan Holsopple, and special guests TBA.

FULL MOON SHOW

AUNTS

Thursday, April 17 at 10pm

The Club at La MaMa

Tickets: $15

Buy tickets here

In this homage to the moon goddess Luna Macaroona on the occasion of the April Full Pink Moon, AUNTS presents a stellar lineup of performances and a touch of mayhem. BYO-lunar receptor. Featuring appearances by Lumberob, Brooke O’Harra and Sharon Hayes, Diana Y. Greiner and Heidi Dorow, Stan Baker “The Human Television”, Salley May, Antonio Ramos and the Gang Bangers, Matt Romein, Chris TylerKaty Pyle, The Impact Addict, and video tributes by Love Everyone Movement and Becca Blackwell. 

READINGS

Tickets: $15 | The Club at La MaMa

Dicks on Parade

Directed by Lucy Sexton

With Jonathan Ames, Steve Buscemi, Jennifer Miller, Nicky Paraiso, and Chris Tanner

April 1819 (Friday and Saturday at 10pm)


Buy tickets here

Readings of stories from Murrin’s 2010 work The Talking Show, the Magical Ridiculous Journey of Alien Comic.

Hung and Butt-Crack Bingo 

Erin Courtney and David Levine (David Soul)

Sunday, April 20 at 5:30pm

Buy tickets here

Erin Courtney directs a reading of Murrin’s one-act play Hung which was his first play produced at La MaMa in 1967. A very hung-over man, Jack, and his girlfriend, Jill, wage an epic battle of linguistic gymnastics, all to the neighbor’s rock-and-roll soundtrack. David Levine sings.

Deviants Arise

Mike Iveson

Wednesday, April 23 at 10pm

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A reading of Murrin’s 2002 play in which he deals with the excesses of the George W. Bush era by focusing on behind-the-scenes tensions at a televised “perv-tacular, or perv-stravaganza, or perv-ocalypse.” The reading will include some of the performers from the original production as well as some new music made specifically for this revival.

Sport-Fuckers

Gary Ray

Thursday, April 24 at 10pm

Buy tickets here

Sport-Fuckers looks at the world of suburban swingers and the issues that arise during an intense sex party. First produced in 1999 at Theatre for the New City, Gary Ray is bringing it back as a staged reading with a hilarious cast of actors and special surprise guests that will make you laugh to tears.

Whores and more

Kate Benson, Karen Finley, Annie Lobst, and Lucy Sexton

April 2526 (Friday and Saturday at 10pm)

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Readings of Murrin’s short and hilarious plays Whores on the Range and Hide the Baloney. Directed by Lucy Sexton.

Son of Cock-Strong

Peculiar Works

Saturday, April 26 at 5pm

Buy tickets here

Ralph Lewis leads Peculiar Works troupers on a wild ride to the top in Son of Cock-Strong. This non-sequel sequel (originally directed by La MaMa bad boy John Vaccaro) follows Arthur Cock-Strong Jr.’s rise to power in a ridiculous musical with new compositions by Spencer Katzman.

Art Shows, Workshops & Panel

Coffeehouse Chronicles #119: Tom Murrin

Curated by Michael Gamily 

Saturday, April 19 at 4pm / The Club at La MaMa / Free

A panel discussion on Murrin’s work and its place in New York avant-garde theater.Moderated by Sarah Maxfield. Panelists include Jo Andres, John GernandLaurie Olinder,Patricia Sullivan, and John Vaccaro. Featuring short performances by Julie Atlas MuzSaint Fortune, and Ruby Lynn Reyner.

Magical Ridiculous Legacy: The Tom Murrin Art Show
Curated by Carlo McCormick
Opening reception Wednesday, April 23rd, 6pm–9pm, with sound by Vintage DJ
Exhibit open for view during gallery hours April 23–27 (Wednesday to Sunday) from 1pm to 7:30pm
La MaMa La Galleria / Free

Magical Ridiculous Legacy of Alien Comic is an assembly of objects, costumes and ephemera from the Tom Murrin archive. This collection is largely focused on the Los Angeles-born Murrin’s longterm tenure in the New York performance art scene that had its heyday in the 1980s. Murrin’s frequent Full Moon Shows, dedicated to his muse Luna Macaroona the Moon Goddess, are in evidence, as well as ephemera from his around-the-world tour in the 1970s. A collage of Alien Comic video clips compiled by filmmaker Larry Fessenden will play during the exhibition.

Children’s Mask-Making Workshop with Iris Rose
Saturday, April 26, 2pm4pm / La MaMa La Galleria / Free
Registration required at tommurrinfullmoonfest@gmail.com

 Children, ages 6 to 12, and their caregivers will each make their own unique mask based on one of Alien Comic/Tom Murrin’s two most popular mask-making techniques. Iris Rose, a friend of Murrin’s and a performer in her own right, will lead the workshop. Materials will be provided. Permanent, quick-drying paint will be used. Children should wear old clothes. Imagination required and, as Murrin would say, “Don’t be afraid to look like a goon!”

Monsters and Robots
Mark Stilwell and Yoko Stilwell
Sunday, April 27 at 6:30pm / La MaMa Entrance (outside) / Free

A live installation and epic street battle featuring Robo Ramen and Ikura Gorerus—costumes inspired by Japanese animation, giant monster movies, and Japanese food. These magical creatures (robot and monster costume bodies and Japanese food-inspired heads) are a collaboration between Mark Stilwell and Yoko Stilwell and are created from cardboard, recycled materials, and components appropriated from previous costumes and installations.

Parade―La MaMa to Dixon Place

Sunday, April 27, following Monsters and Robots

The festival culminates with a parade that will include spontaneous outdoor performances enroute from La MaMa to Dixon Place, where the second annual Tom Murrin Performance Award (aka “The Tommy”) will be presented.

The Tommy is an annual award granted to a New York City-based early career artist who embodies Murrin’s generous artistic spirit and gift for unearthing big, meaningful ideas by creating resourceful, exuberant, mysterious, luminous theatrical performance. The award is intended to provide a transformative career opportunity to its recipient, who will receive a Dixon Place residency, a three-night run in the theater, and an honorarium. Artists are selected by a panel of distinguished producers, artistic directors, and artists.

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