NY Clown Theater Festival Opening Night 2011

by: Stanley Allan Sherman
© copyright September 15, 2011

Opening night of the NY Clown Theater Festival hosted by The Leroy Sisters.  It is always wonderful to see The Leroy Sisters dancing, gymnastic, high kicking, stunning dresses/costumes with all of the amazing, “how did they do that” quick changes, that makes the audience go aaa… and ooo…, doing their costume changes in stunning time as they brilliantly introduced the acts and kept the show rolling along.  Not doing too much and not doing to little.   The theatrical substance of their performing is always there. Missed the opening by 15 minutes so I cannot comment on that.

These are promos for the full shows through out the NY Clown Theater Festival and here is the run down.

TiVo la Resistance!  Seems only interesting; then in grew with surprising twists.  Playing on old standard expectations, with twisting comedy.  Well worth checking out, it seems like positive different clowning.

Odessey Schodyssey created and performed by Hew Parham uses a lot of indication mime; a style of mime which many performers seem to use.  It is not clean and clear but one gets the meaning and we are able to follow the story.  This is just 10 or 15 minutes – it will good to see how his show is fully flushed out.

Mark Gindick Wing-Man, it is very much about Marks dancing, character and playing with recorded music.  Mark has a good fan base and I am interested to see how he and his show has grown and changed.  You will be able to catch his on Sept. 24 @ 8 PM and Sept 25 @ 5 PM.

Jeff & Buttons:  If you really like stupid, silly, low level humor, this is your show.  These two push the envelope of how stupid can we make this show.  Yes they are talented and it takes real talent and guts or I just don’t give a &^!% to get as low as these two get.  Sept 24 @ 10 PM, Sept 25 @ 7 PM.

Joel Jeske in I Have Never Done this Before; created and performed by Joel Jeske.  I have seen Joel perform a lot over the years, always funny, always within other things and almost always with his extremely talented performer and now famous blogger ex-wife, Juliet Jeske.  One of the powerful elements of a clown is their venerability and sensitivity.  I have never seen Joel this venerable or sensitive.  Joel started out hitting his clown venerability square on with just a few words.   After opening remarks, paraphrasing, “I am a recently divorce man.  I am a recently discovered I was gay man.”  Playing with the audience a little asking, “How many people here are divorced?” Some people held up their hands.  “How many people are gay?”  Some held up their hands.  “How many are clowns?”  No one held up their hands.  Joel’s comment about this was funny with right on timing.  Loved that he actually played music and sang.  It is such a pleasure not to hear and see a performer that is using someone else’s recorded music as a crutch.   Joel’s 10 to 15 minutes was fresh, alive like I have never seen Joel before.  No more do I see Joel using his great and vast array of very funny clown technique and tricks to fill an evening, but something new and different.  He has really fractured his safety net and now as we like to say in the Commedia dell’Arte, jumping into the void.  This show is performing Sept 22 @ 8 PM and Sept 23 @ 8 PM.  One way to tell if an experienced performer is going all the way is how sweaty they are, Joel was drenched. Get tickets in advance, this should sell out!

Channel One, created and performed by Emily James & Ishah Janssen-faith.  They had a video clip that was interesting.  Based on last year and the fact they have been performing their show together for year it will be great to see these two and how they have grown.  Performing Sept 22 @ 10 PM and Sept 23 @ 10 PM.

Flocked, created by Audrey Cabtree and Gabriela Munoz, directed by Hilary Chaplain, costumes by Valentina Munoz with Adriana Sarada.
It is wonderful to see so many clowns pushing their envelopes of performance and creativity.  Here are two more and this if the fist piece that I know of that Hilary Chaplain has directed.  The 10 to 15 minutes looks like it is a good whole piece of clown-theater created by Audrey and Gabriela.  Both attract and holds everyone’s attention, filling every moment.  One is absorbed watching both of the clowns interplay and reactions to each out.  The costumes are unique and original with both clowns using all the elements of these unique clowns.   The only really bad thing about this show are the dates it will be running as I am forced to miss these show which ran Sept 15, 16, 17 @ 8 PM and Sunday at 7 PM.

In the future where possible it would be good to see shows running throughout the festival rather than all bunched up.  This would give unknown shows a better shot at building an audience and attracting producers that are around NYC through word of mouth.

All shows are at The Brick Theater
575 Metropolitan Avenue
Brooklyn NY 11211
Phone: 718-907-6189 


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