Five years ago LaMama theater presented this wonderful ‘Coffeehouse Chronicles’ examining the contemporary puppet theater from the 1970s to 2015.I thought it would bring some joy to those that missed this wonderful event and others to repost in these difficult times.
The Talking Band has been making innovative and influential theater works in New York for 40 years. Collectively, the founders have earned 11 OBIE awards and numerous other honors. The company has performed at nearly all of New York’s celebrated downtown venues, including LaMama, PS 122, Theater for the New City, Dance Theater Workshop, The Ohio Theater, The Flea Theater, and HERE Arts Center. Nearly 50 of its original productions include The Golden Toad, Marcellus Shale, The Walk Across America for Mother Earth, Bitterroot, Radnevsky’s Real Magic, Painted Snake in a Painted Chair, Black Milk Quartet and The Three Lives of Lucie Cabrol.
The Coffeehouse Chronicles #132 hosted founder Paul Zimet and other founding members for this special survey of their work which included slides, videos and panel discussion. Since the afternoon covered 40 years of work I captured some photographs and a few videos to represent the span of work that The Talking Band created.
(Left to Right) Burke Brown, Christianna Nelson, Jenny Rogers, Clove Galilee and moderator Jessica Brater.
(Left to Right) Lee Breuer, David Neumann, Clove Galilee, Karen Kandel, Maude Mitchell and Sharon Ann Fogerty.
Coffeehouse Chronicles Personel:
Series Director: Michael Gamily
Educational Outreach: Arthur Adair
Sound Design: Tim Schellenbaum
Sound Technician: Hao Bai
Videography: Culture Hub
Social Media Editor & Photographer: Ryan Leach
Coffeehouse Chronicles #128 began with Dario D’Ambrosi performing an excerpt from his show “Tutti non ci sono”. at LaMama etc.
The event was a review of his work and the company he created TEATRO PATOLOGICO.
There was also a demonstration of ‘warm up’ and ‘acting method’ performed by members of the TeatroPatologico.
Dario D’Ambrosi has been part of the LaMama theatre community for 35 years.
Celebrating the work of Yoshiko Chuma & The School of Hard Knocks
Moderator for the evening was Gayle Tufts.
A ‘free’, interactive, educational series exploring the history and development of Off-Off Broadway from its inception within the Village ‘coffeehouse theatres’ of the 1960’s through today. Part artist portrait, part history lesson, part community forum.
Here are a few photographs from the evening’s event.
Brian Moran (one of the original members of School of Hard Knocks)performs a dance improv.
Moderator Gayle Tufts and Yoshiko do a little duo together.
Yoshiko Chuma slyly approaches the microphone.
Panel #1 – Left to Right: Yoshiko Chuma, Gayle Tufts, Deborah Jowitt, Brian Moran, Lori E. Seid.
Deborah Jowitt talks about her experiences watching Yoshiko Chuma over the years.
Brian Moran talks about his time performing with Yoshiko Chuma and The School of Hard Knocks.
Yoshiko talks about her work with the company in the early days of it’s formation.
Lori E. Seid talks about her time working with the company as lighting designer and stage manager.
Ursula Eagly talks about her time with Yoshiko using a powerpoint presentation.
Ursula’s powerpoint was very informative as what countries Yoshiko had worked in and the people she worked with.
Gayle Tufts talks with photographer/painter Bob Flynt about his photographs of Yoshiko and the company.
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PANEL #2 – Allyson Green, Elise Bernhardt and Gabriel Berry.
Allyson Green talks about Yoshiko’s work and it’s impact on her.
Elise Bernhardt talks about her inspiration from Yoshiko’s work.
Gabriel Berry discusses her work making costumes for Yoshiko and the company.
Yoshiko Chuma and Robert Black perform a duo with his bass.
Robert Black behind Yoshiko in their duo.
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PANEL #3 – Jodi Melnick, Ursula Eagly and Mizuo Peck. (no photos)
Gayle Tufts talks to the audience about her work performing in Germany/Austria.
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During the evening their were photographs of Yoshiko Chuma’s early performance days by Dona Ann McAdams, a scene from a film by Jacob Burckhardt (It Don’t Pay to be an Honest Citizen)1984
During the panel discussion Deborah Jowitt reads excerpts from her reviews and experiences watching Yoshiko Chuma & The School of Hard Knocks. Brian Moran talks about his early days working with Yoshiko Chuma &The School of Hard Knocks.
Recollections and remembrances of working with Yoshiko Chuma & The School of Hard Knocks by Lori E. Seid. Introduced by Gayle Tufts. Part of the LaMama Etc series.
An example of the dance work done by Yoshiko Chuma & School of Hard Knocks is demonstrated by dancer Megumi Eda in a short solo piece.
During the evening Yoshiko Chuma and Robert Black engaged in an improv with nothing but his bass and bow and Yoshiko's dancing. Nicky Paraiso sings and Dane Terry and Nicky do a piano relay.
One of the talents Gayle Tufts has is singing. Here she sings a song she wrote. Accompanied by Nicky Paraiso on the piano and Robert Black on Bass.
Part of the Coffehouse Chronicles #125.
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Coffeehouse Chronicles #124 was presented on March 14th, 2015. A ‘free’, interactive, educational series exploring the history and development of Off-Off Broadway from its inception within the Village ‘coffeehouse theatres’ of the 1960’s through today. Part artist portrait, part history lesson, part community forum.
The curator Michael Gamily opened the evening with comments followed by an interview with Ping Chong by Victoria Abrash.
Moderator Victoria Abrash interviews theater artist Ping Chong.
During the interview slides surveying Ping Chong’s work were projected. Ping discusses his early days.
Alvin Eng (far right) talks about his first encounter with the work of Ping Chong. Talvin Wilks seated to his left.
Alvin Eng talks about growing up in the Queens, NY ‘Chinatown’.
Talvin Wilks talks about collaborating with Ping Chong.
Moriamo Akibu talks to the audience about what it is like to work on ‘Collidescope’ project.
The evening also presented video excerpts from “Truth & Beauty” (by Ping Chong, Michael Rohd, Jeff Rose. Virginia Tech, 1999) & “Collidescope: Adventures of Pre and Post Racial America” (by Ping Chong & Talvin Wilks, University of Maryland, 2014)
(Left to right) Victoria Abrash, Ping Chong, Alvin Eng, Talvin Wilks, Moriamo Akibu, Michal Gamily and Arthur Adair.