New York solo performance art legend Taylor Mac sings about love, mermaids, subway safety, and revolution in The Be(A)st of Taylor Mac, a wild—and wildly funny—gender-bending fusion of cabaret, politics, and stark raving fabulousness.
Hailed as “the most distinctive and brilliant performer in ages” (The Scotsman), Taylor Mac is a theatre artist who blends performance art, playwriting, acting, musical composition, and direction to create solo and ensemble pastiches. He has performed at more than a hundred venues around the world, from Stockholm’s Sodre Teatern to New York’s Public Theater. His works include Red Tide Blooming, Peace, The Young Ladies Of, and The Lily’s Revenge. The recipient of the Edinburgh Festival’s Herald Angel Award, P.S. 122’s first ever Ethyl Eichelberger Award for artistic excellence, an Edward Albee Foundation Residency, a Peter S. Reed Grant, and The Ensemble Studio Theatre’s New Voices Fellowship in Playwriting, Taylor Mac was named one of 10 New York Playwrights to Watch in 2005, one of nytheatre.com’s People of the Year in 2006, and one of Out magazine’s Top 100 in 2008.
The Be(A)st of Taylor Mac has a running time of approximately 90 minutes, and each performance is followed by a talk back with the artist.
Funded in part by the Root Boy Slim Fund and the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.
Free and open to the public
Lecture by Tavia Nyong’o, Associate Professor,
Tisch School of the Arts
Response by Joanne Meyerowitz, Professor in American Studies, Yale University
Monday, January 25, 5:30-7PM Whitney Humanities Center, 53 Wall Street, Room 208
At a moment when the project of civil equality appears politically primary, what are we to make of those differences to which queer acts, lives and cultures are inextricably attached? Is the goal of social acceptance, as critics like Samuel Delany have argued, interdependent with a broader and more worrisome process of gentrification? Or can the freaky—as a non-identitarian category of sex, creativity, and collectivity—resist being forcibly 'disappeared'? Taking a cue from the performances of Taylor Mac in Red Tide Blooming, The Lily's Revenge, and elsewhere, this talk explores the cultural history of "the freak" in popular amusement, in cultural lore regarding the sexually or genitally different, and in contemporary tactics that reclaim the epithet for artistic and political purposes.
Tavia Nyong'o is Associate Professor of Performance Studies at New York University, where he teaches courses in African American Studies, Gay and Lesbian Studies, and Cultural History. His book, The Amalgamation Waltz, was published by the University of Minnesota Press in 2009. He has also published essays in Radical History Review, Yale Journal of Criticism, and Social Text, where he is currently web editor.
Co-sponsored by Yale Theater Studies Program and the Whitney Humanities Center
Wednesday, January 27, 6-8pm
Theater Studies Ballroom, 220 York Street, Room 101
Audiences are invited to engage in an interactive studio session with featured artist Taylor Mac. Please bring a mop/broom handle (top part not needed) or a tall wooden dowel if you plan to participate.
Co-sponsored by Yale Theater Studies Program
Q&A sessions with the artists will be held immediately following all performances.
Thursday, January 28th - GPSCY celebrates the Be(A)st
Join us after the show at the GPSCY. Show your ticket for drink specials and no cover!
Friday, January 29th - LGBTQ Night Out at 168 York
Bring your ticket stub for a complimentary drink and some appetizers following the performance.