Pink House Press

As I mentioned a while ago, I performed in a short film a few months ago entitled The Pink House.  This project was generated and produced by my friends at Naked Angels, and largely cast with the regular actors at our Tuesdays at Nine reading series; through a series of events that requires a much higher word count to explain properly (hence the upcoming link), we wound up having access to a West Village rowhouse which we were able to turn into a film set for a month.  The film is now in post-production, as the footage is being edited, scoring and other necessary accoutrements being finalized, and all the boring paperwork squared away.  It’s a boring time in the life of any film project; the (not actually) glamourous work of shooting is finished, the material is essentially all set, but it will be a long time before any sort of screening or premiere, or any other reason for anybody not directly involved with the film to care about what’s happening with it.

Which did not stop New York magazine from running an entire feature about us.

Yes, last week’s issue of New York has an entire article about the shooting of The Pink House, the history of Naked Angels, the life story of our producer Mark O’Brien, and just about anything else you might care to know about our project.  You can read it here if you like (see, I told you there’d be a link!). Apparently, we’re famous.

And, predictably, I have Some Feelings about that.

For one thing, of course, I’m a performing artist and I have my vanity.  As the saying goes, it doesn’t matter what you say about me as long as you spell my name right.  And at no point in this article is my name mentioned – even though the entire opening to the article is a detailed description of a shot in which I’m featured.  There’s whole rhapsodic sections of prose detailing the man in the stovepipe hat, who speaks not a word as the camera passes by him as Mark’s character repels down the building.  (Seriously, that’s the first thing we shot.  It’s a nice arresting opening – which is, y’know, why the article opens with it too.) Well, the man in the stovepipe hat is speaking!  Right now!  It’s me!  I am the man in the stovepipe hat!  There’s even a picture with me in the background, right there in the article, featuring me and that stovepipe hat!  I have a name, gosh darn it!

In all seriousness, as happy as I am that both the film project and the theatre company got such in-depth coverage, in such a precarious time for the arts, I can’t help but be curious about the timing?  Why us?  And more importantly, why now?  I mean, I don’t know if you’ve been keeping up with current events but dear holy god there is a lot of crazy stuff happening right now!  It may have a frivolous tone a lot of the time, but New York is still a weekly newsmagazine centered in a city where a lot of news happens, and there’s a lot of investigative work they could be doing right about now!  Even in terms of arts coverage, there are plenty of playwrights and filmmakers urgently trying to tackle the issues of the day, and they could definitely use the column space.

Of course, so can we.  And we are absolutely trying to tackle the issues of the day.  That’s the whole point of our cold reading series – so writers can react to what’s going on around them, and have immediate feedback from the actors and the audience.

And yet – that’s not reflected in this particular article.  Not that it has to be, but this article places a huge amount of emphasis on Naked Angels’ hard partying past in the 80s and 90s – which you’ll note was several decades before The Pink House was shot.  It’s very much a nostalgia piece for that era of New York, and views our movie through that lens.  And yes, that’s absolutely true – as I blogged about myself, the film came about through a whole bunch of parties at the titular pink house in the Village.  It’s very much a retro thing, sort of a Sixties’ Happening.  The nostalgia makes perfect sense in our ever more grim world.  And it’s absolutely a part of what we were doing.

But it’s not the only part.  And I really want to believe we’re more than that.  Especially in a world where partying and entertainment can so easily cross the line to becoming bread and circuses.

But I am more than happy to take up the column space.

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