Notes From a Hangover, Thank You P-Club ‘09

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

By the time you read this, I hopefully won’t still be suffering from the after-effects of P.S. 122’s holiday bash. Maybe I’ll even have regained my hearing.

The good folks at P.S. (in particular the divine Carleigh Welsh) kindly allowed the P. Club to crash their notorious annual party for our December event. It was wonderful to see so many of you there; those of you who didn’t make it perhaps won’t be surprised to hear that we didn’t spend much time on in-depth discussions.

Some of us were reminiscing over the year last night: our impromptu Michael Jackson dance party at the NuMu the day he died, our underground adventure in the Atlantic Avenue tunnel, debating the great dance critic Edwin Denby on the Highline... the list goes on. I was blown away by our first-ever private event at the Baryshnikov Arts Center, where we packed a studio for an OtherShore showing of a new Annie-B Parson work, and had the best post-performance discussion (real ideas!) I’ve ever attended. It gets better: our online debates over the contemporary performance world’s economic woes even helped to spark a think tank.

I’m grateful to you all for making the Performance Club such a vibrant, challenging affair. Criticism can be a lonely endeavor, or at least an isolating one. I had hoped, in starting this club last December, to create a democratic space where people with no background in art, or lots of background, or anything in between could come together and feast on ideas, offer different perspectives and argue over what they saw and how it made them feel without there being any right or wrong answers.

Live art can’t be tucked away in museum storage units. It exists in a much messier, more exciting realm –our minds. Here’s to 2010!


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Comments [4]

Siobhan Burke

Ditto to Evan and David. I've had a great time p-clubbing this year. A few personal highlights: watching the Cyclones game in a brewing storm and taking shelter from the rain with a crowd of minor league baseball fans; Othershore's interpretation of Heidi and hearing from Annie-B and the dancers after the show; that crazy poetry from the crazy "Romanians" of Inverse Theater, lines of which still pop into my head every so often... The list goes on! I'm really so happy that this group exists, as a place to keep seeing and debating performance in all its forms.

About Staten Island, the place is pretty much a mystery to me. But one idea that came to mind -- there used to be an Irish dance competition/festival (feis) there every summer, hosted by Niall O'Leary. Having been to *many* feises growing up, I assure you -- they are pretty unusual spectacles. Could be an interesting P-club outing, if it's going on next summer...

Dec. 19 2009 10:42 AM

aww, thanks guys. i hope you'll let me know about any suggestions you have for the year. stuff we shouldn't miss, stuff we most definitely *should* miss, etc. i'm still trying to figure out our first staten island outing, so we can claim to have hit every borough ...

Dec. 17 2009 10:52 PM
Evan Namerow

What an amazing year for P. Club. I'll never forget the NuMu dance party on the day that MJ died, or the late night debate over Jack Ferver's work, or climbing down a manhole for the Atlantic Avenue tunnel adventure. Thank you, Claudia, for leading this incredible initiative. I can't wait to see how P. Club grows and challenges its members in 2010!

Dec. 17 2009 11:02 AM
David Savage from NYC

Thanks for an incredible year! Looking forward to 2010 with PC. You're the best!!


Dec. 17 2009 10:47 AM

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About Performance Club

Open to everyone, the Performance Club is a freewheeling conversation about New York performance of all kinds, from experimental theater to gallery installations to contemporary dance. We go, we talk (online and at bars and cafes, with artists and amongst ourselves), we disagree and, sometimes, we change each other’s minds.


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