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Comedy Dance Darinka Exhibit Film Music Performing Arts Photography Vaudevisuals Interview

Vaudevisuals Interview with Gary Ray – “Darinka”

Darinka Membership Card

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Alien Comic and DanceNoise at Darinka Flyer from 1985.

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Darinka interior archive shot.

‘They Might Be Giants’ performing at Darinka.

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The archives from Darinka were donated to The Fales Library & Special Collections at NYU. Here is a Biographical/Historical note from the archives.

Darinka: A Performance Studio was opened on April 21, 1984, by Gary Ray Bugarcic (aka Gary Ray). The club served as a venue for artists of all disciplines, including performance, theatre, music, dance, film, video, fine art, and poetry and prose. In keeping with the Eastern European roots of the East Village/Lower East Side, the club was named after Gary’s mother, who was Croatian-born. Darinka is a derivative of the Slavic word dar, meaning “gift.”

The club was located at 118 East First Street, two doors down from Avenue A, and had a speakeasy type entrance under the residential stoop of the building. Up to the late 1970s, the space was used as a local Italian Social Club until a fire destroyed it. During the renovation of the space, all the old charred beams were laid in the backyard to provide an urban rustic wood patio enjoyed by patrons during the hot summer months. The interior of the club had a small proscenium stage that was described by many as looking like a live television. A variety of local painters such as James Romberger and Mark Kostabi showed their work on the walls of the club until the permanent murals and stencils were painted. Regular performers included They Might Be Giants (considered the house band), performance artist Steve Buscemi (still a fireman when he started performing), Karen Finley, Jack Smith, Charles Long, William Pope L., Kembra Pfahler, Nick Zedd, Anna Deavere Smith, and John S. Hall. In addition, there were many writers who read during the Sunday prose and poetry nights, including Darius James, Patrick McGrath, Hal Sirowitz, Lynne Tillman, Mark Dery, Nina Zivancevic, Peter Cherches, Bob Holman, Ira Cohen and Taylor Meade.

On June 29, 1985, the NYPD raided the club during a mushroom party and performance by artists David West and Andy Somma. Gary Ray and the bartender, Robin Clements, were arrested for operating an unlicensed bottle club. Several months later Darinka reopened as a private club with Randy Lee Hartwig and John Gernand as managers. As a private club, each new member would fill out a membership application card upon entrance. The application cards were kept in a file near the door in case of a police inquiry. Membership cards were also distributed.

Darinka was the first home of “The Church of the Little Green Man.” The church was founded by conceptual artist Mike Osterhout and had its first service in December of 1986. Darinka closed in May of 1987.

Articles mentioning Darinka have appeared in The Village Voice,  New York magazine,  Performance,  East Village Eye,  Toronto Globe and Mail,  The New York Times, and  The Drama Review (Spring 1985). The club is also acknowledged in the documentary  Gigantic: A Tale Of Two Johns.

Gary Ray Bugarcic, a graduate of The American Academy of Dramatic Arts, has worked as an actor and stage director in almost every downtown New York theatrical venue. As a musician, he played in several bands, including State of Desire and The Academy, which performed regularly at CBGB and Danceteria before opening Darinka. After closing the club he toured with Karen Finley in her play  The Theory of Total Blame and worked with The Ridge Theatre Company as well as with Kestutis Nakas and in Jeff Weiss’s “Hot Keys.” He has also appeared in such indie films as Todd Haynes’  Poison and  Desperately Seeking Susan.  New Blood magazine published his poetry in the 1980s and his “3-D Lenticular Photographs of the Eighties” have been shown in several New York City galleries, including the Participant Gallery.

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Here is a calendar list that Gary provided me to give an idea of the lineup that appeared every week at Darinka in 1985.

1/4, Ted Sputnik & his Orchestra plus the music of Kid Ego (Gary Quasar), plus performance with Mike Smith.

 1/5,  Show of Force, films and performance w/ Richard Kern and Brian Moran.

 1/6,  Short stories & Poetry w/ M.Kasper, Kennon Raines, Sadik Sedan (Sedik Grice), Bruce Benderson and Lisa Blauchild.

 1/11, performance w/ Leonard Grendel in “Do You Want to Fight $11,750,000 ?” plus music w/ Tom Cora.

1/12,  Accordion Summit # 2 presented by Zeena Parkins w/ the B’Z’s Squeezes and Billy Swindler and the Happy New Yorkers. Also Guy Klusevek performed.

 1/13,  Poetry w/ Robert Kendall and friends.

 1/18, They Might Be Giants, plus the music of Bond Bergland.

 1/19,  Films by Mark Kehoe including; “Revenge of the Amazons,” “Metal Madam,” and “The Naked Hiptress.” Plus performance w/ Michael Smith and the music of Burnt Orange.

1/20,  Poetry w/ Amy Shaipiro & friends with Sharon Gannon, David Life, Sue Ann Harkey, Judy Berger, Eric Eddy, and Stephen Paul Miller.

 1/25, Performance w/ Cindy Frawely’s  “War Dreams,” plus video & performance w/ Steve Thurston and James Minnis.

 1/26,  Directart Productions Ltd. Present A Cavalcade of films. “Three Step” & “Minute of Mystery,” animation by Joey Ahlbum and “Bass Line” & “Devil Movie’ by Barry Masterson, “Dapple-Grey’ & Dirt Road” by Leslie Pascel-Laufer, “Soul City” by M.Henry Jones, “Bloody Stump” by Michael Wolfe & Sidney Gilbert. “A Portrait of the Man’ by Fabio Roberti & Directart Films. Plus 2 films about the local band The Jickets; “Good Lovin’ Guitar Man” and “Heterosexual Love” by Directart Films.

 

1/27,  Celebrate Sir Thomas Wyatt’s Birthday “ The Disciplines of Distress” a play by Greg Masters & Jeff Wright w/ Elinor Nauen, Doris Kornish, Francesca Shrady, Blair Breard, Jeff Wright  and Greg Masters. Plus readings by Carla Liss, Don Yorty, Mayer, Hamilton and Mastersschiff.

 2/3,  The Tweed Theatre presents: Tzara’s “The Gas Heart.” Directed by Kevin Malony. Plus Club 86’ed w/ Mike Golden, Bob Riedel, Meegan McCombs, Rusty Hoover, Janet Cannon, Phil Herter and Mike Schwartz.

 2/8,  music and dance w/ Gregg Bendian, Ned Rothenberg, Sally Silvers and Pooh Kaye.

 2/9,  “A Hollow Venus (the Diary of a GoGo Dancer),” performance w/ Heather Woodbury.

 2/10,  Hard Boiled Night of Readings curated by Peter Cherches w/ Bill Dupp, Jim Strahs, Lee Eiferman and Sue Weinstein.

 2/15,  Nancy Cassaro’s “Be My Valantine” w/Otis Jah Baker, DeWitt Mebane, Jennie Moreau, Mark Nassar, Hal Simons and Moira Wilson.

 2/16,  Barbara Lehmann’s “Physical Education” performance concerning her medical history.

 2/16,  Music – Hugo Largo- w/ Mimi Goese.

 2/23-24, They Might Be Giants plus performance with Watchface.

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Thanks to Gary Ray for this interview!

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Categories
Dixon Place Music Performing Arts Photography

The Tom Murrin Performance Award @ Dixon Place – April 25th, 2013 – Award Winners “ANIMALS”

A great night for all those that attended.

The Tommy Award has been established to honor Tom Murrin’s life & work by offering a transformative career opportunity to an outstanding artist or company.

Uncle Jimmy's Dirty Basement supplied the rockin music for the evening.Uncle Jimmy’s Dirty Basement supplied the rockin music for the evening.

Performanz artist Pat Oleszko host the toast to Tom Murrin

Performanz artist Pat Oleszko host the toast to Tom Murrin.

Dixon Place founder and Artistic director opens the night with a nice talk about Tom.

Dixon Place founder and Artistic director Ellie Covan opens the night with a nice talk about Tom.

Mat Fraser and Julie Atlas Muz add spice to the evening's festivities.

Mat Fraser and Julie Atlas Muz add spice to the evening’s festivities.

Patricia Sullivan talks about her first meeting Tom.

Patricia Sullivan talks about her first meeting Tom.

Tommy Award Winning group ANIMALS video is projected.

Tommy Award Winning group ANIMALS video is projected.

The audience at the event was there when I took this picture.

Ellie Covan introduced me and I got up and took this photograph of the audience.

Pat Oleszko talks about the award she designed for the event.

Pat Oleszko talks about the award she designed for the event.

Jo Andres and Steve Buscemi present the award to ANIMALS.

Jo Andres and Steve Buscemi present the award to ANIMALS.

ANIMALS performance group.

ANIMALS performance group. (l. to r. Michael De Angelis, Nikki Calonge, and Mike Mikos)

Elated ANIMALS group.

Elated about this TOMMY award the ANIMALS group express it.

Uncle Jimmy's Dirty Basement

Uncle Jimmy’s Dirty Basement finishes the night off.

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Video interview with ANIMALS on Vaudevisuals here.

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Panelist for the 1st Annual Tommy Award:

Noel Allain (Bushwick Starr)

Arthur Aviles (Bronx Academy of Arts and Dance)

Michael Cross Burke (Trinity/LaMama)

Ellie Covan (Dixon Place)

Katy Einerson (Dixon Place)

James Godwin (Performance Artist)

Jeffrey Jones (Little Theatre)

Salley May (Performance Artist

Nicky Paraiso (La Mama)

Samara Naeymi (Incubator Arts Project)

Brian Rodgers (The Chocolate Factory)

Lucy Sexton (Performer, Producer, Director)

Patricia Sullivan (Photographer & Tom’s wife)

Marya Warshaw (Brooklyn Arts Exchange)

Martha Wilson (Franklin Furnace)

Categories
Abrons Art Center Avant_Garde_Arama Film Performing Arts

PS122 – “Avant-Garde-Arama” @ Abrons Arts Center – DAY 2 – Sat. April 13, 2013

Saturday night was the second of a two night celebration of performance artist Tom Murrin (aka Alien Comic) presented at the gorgeous Abrons Arts Center in the Lower East Side.

The lineup for Sat night’s show was as follows:

Lucy Sexton and Mike Iverson (Co-hosts)

Jason SchulerThe Operating Theater Company

Unitard – Mike Albo, Nora Burns and David IIku

 Chris Tanner

Jeremy X Halpern

Andrew Schneider (YOUARENOTHERE)

Jo Andres (Video featuring Steve Buscemi)

Tigger

Laurie Berg

 Mimi Goese

[title of show] includes Susan Blackwell, Hunter Bell, Jeff Bowen, Heidi Blickenstaff, Larry Pressgrove, Michael Berresse

Here are some images from Saturday evening’s show.

The Mob Dance @ Avant Garde Arama

The Avant Garde Arama ‘dancers’ perform the Tom Mob dance.

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Celebrating the Full Moon of Tom Murrin with one of his routines performed on Sat. night.

CoHosts Mike Iverson and Lucy Sexton

CoHosts Mike Iverson and Lucy Sexton

Chris Tanner performing at Avant Garde Arama

Chris Tanner performing a monolog followed by a song.

Unitard Comedy group performing at Avant Garde Arama

Unitard Comedy group performing at Avant Garde Arama

Steve Buscemi featured in Jo Andres film.

Steve Buscemi featured in Jo Andres film “When the Curtain Comes Down” based on a song by Diana Krall.

Laurie Berg dances up a storm.

Laurie Berg dances up a sultry storm.

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[title of show] /Now. Here. This. – Original Cast members.

Andrew Schneider performing at Avant Garde Arama

Andrew Schneider performing with interactive electronics.

Cohost Lucy Sexton

Cohost Lucy Sexton introducing the next act.

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Production/Stage manager Lori E. Seid shows PS122 Director Vallejo Gartner that his time is up to finish his beer.

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Dixon Place founder and Director Ellie Covan explains the new ‘TOMMY” awards to the audience.

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R. Sikoryak reads from Moby Dick for this ’40secondstreet’ piece. One one leg!

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Alice Krugler performs a ’40secondstreet’ segment.

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Salley May talks about the ’40secondstreet’ segment to the audience.

Gary Ray performs in '40secondstreet' segment to get something 'off his chest' as he explained to me later!

Gary Ray  performs in ’40secondstreet’ segment to get something ‘off his chest’ as he explained to me later!

Helen dances up a storm for the audience.

A regular at the ‘Avant-Garde-Arama’ for many years, Helen dances up a storm for the audience. (she is 90 yrs old)

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The audience went wild when Helen was dancing on stage.

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Mimi Goese performs a beautiful song and performance piece to music by Kevin Macleod and How How.

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Nurse Baby Aspargus towering of the body of Lucy Sexton. (Cohosts of the show)

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The Operating Theater Company (with Jason Schuler) performed a hysterical ‘hippie cast’ play.

Tigger performs a wild routine.

James (Tigger) Ferguson performed a wild and crazy ‘boylesque’ piece with smashing apples together that covered the front row audience members.

Categories
Dance LaMaMa etc Magic Performing Arts Photography Variety Arts

Celebrating the Life of Tom Murrin @ La Mama Ellen Stewart Theater – Sunday June 3rd 2012

Patricia Sullivan welcomes you to an afternoon of words, images and performances honoring the beloved

TOM MURRIN (1939 – 2012)

Performance Artist, Playwright, Writer, Friend.

(Highlights from this wonderful event generously hosted by La Mama’s Ellen Stewart Theater.)

Pat Olezko‘s Inflatables greeted you at the entrance to La Mama for the Tom Murrin Celebration.

Tom Murrin’s desk was on display in the entrance.

Luna Macaroona Blessing by Annabel Sexton-Daltry and Salley and Louise May.

Agosta Machado with the Luna Macaroona Blessing.

Patricia Sullivan reads some very personal funny things about her husband.

Lucy Sexton was an amazing MC for this event. Wig and mask in hand.

Mimi Goese and Dick Connette perform ‘Fixing a Hole’ by the Beatles.

Jo Andres and Steve Buscemi share some hilarious stories about Tom.

Nicky Paraiso sings and gets the audience to participate in a ‘sing-a-long’.

Cary Curran dances a beautiful piece that Tom would have loved.

Mark Mitton levitates a table with the help of Tom’s sister.

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A tax deductible donation can me made in support of Tom’s Archives.

Make checks payable to “Artspire, A Program of NYFA”

In the memo line indicate “The Legend of Alien Comic”.

Mail to: Artspire, A Program of NYFA, Fiscal Sponsorship Program

20 Jay Street, 7th FLoor, Brooklyn NY 11201

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Other speakers of the evening included:

Jane Friedman

John Vaccaro

Ellie Covan

Message from Mark Russell

Carlo McCormack

Message from Alex Souldancer

Alien Comic Video edited by Larry Fessenden

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Thanks to Lori E. Seid and Bill Schaffner for making the great evening’s TECHNICAL brilliance.