[nueBOX] Creates Platform for Phoenix-Area Performance Artists

Courtesy of [nueBOX]
[nueBOX] provides burgeoning performance and installation artists with studio space and exhibition opportunities.

How do performance and installation artists make the transition from the structure of school to the chaos and uncertainty of the real world? [nueBox], a nonprofit arts organization, has some ideas. Their year-long residency programs provide creatives with studio space (through a partnership with Phoenix Center for the Arts) as well as performance opportunities and a platform for critical analysis of their working pieces.

[nueBOX] will hold its launch party (aptly dubbed "[nueLAUNCH]") on February 5 at First Draft Book Bar. We chatted with co-director Matthew Mosher about the event and the state of Phoenix's performance art scene.

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Cherrie Moraga's The Hungry Woman Comes to ASU: Tragedy That Hits Close to Home

Tim Trumble, courtesy of ASU Herberger Institute for Design and Arts
The Hungry Woman weaves together Greek and Aztec mythology, along with a little Mexican folklore.

ASU's fall theatre lineup will feature The Hungry Woman by Cherrie Moraga, which promises to be a new -- and local -- take on an old classic.

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Phoenix to Host Individual World Poetry Slam October 8-11

Red Greg
Phoenix is about to get a whole lot Slam-mier.

Seventy-two competitive slam poets walk into a coffee shop in Phoenix. This is not a joke. There will be no punchline.

The Arizona Humanities Council will play host to the 2014 Individual World Poetry Slam, a four-day event that pits "presentative poets" against one another. The competition itself exists as a series of timed bouts, each judged by five randomly selected audience members. The top 12 competitors will move on to the final round on Saturday, October 11, hosted at Marquee Theatre.

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Mystic Circus Arrives in Phoenix to Train the Youth, Shock the Adults

Categories: Performance Art

Image courtesy of Alwun House
Mystic Circus shows and eventual classes offer sideshow, traditional circus, and a plethora of other acts

Over his career, self-proclaimed "natural-born freak" Rush Hicks has performed or trained with the Coney Island Sideshow and Squidling Brother Circus, placing him among the elite of the world's circus and sideshow performers. In the past year alone, Hicks has logged almost 15,000 miles of travel all over the world with the aforementioned troupes, and on his own.

So what brings him to Phoenix?

Founded in Brooklyn, Hicks has brought the Mystic Circus to downtown Phoenix's Alwun House, where it performs every second Saturday following a successful trial show in May. But even that pales to the project currently occupying most of his time: founding the Mystic Circus school.

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Paul Elliott Captures Phoenix's Drag Scene with "This D**k Walks Into a Bar" at Eye Lounge

Categories: Performance Art

Melissa Fossum
Paul Elliott's portraits of Coco St. James at Eye Lounge

Anyone who has watched RuPaul's Drag Race for at least 10 minutes can vouch for the magic of drag. Seeing a burly man (eyebrows optional) transform into a gorgeous woman is more entertaining than you might think. The process isn't easy, thanks to tucking and creating the illusion of a feminine silhouette, but the end result can lip-synch like nobody's business.

Local photographer Paul Elliott captures that magic in his exhibition "This D**k Walks Into a Bar," which is open to the public at Eye Lounge from 6 to 10 p.m. Friday, January 3. We recently caught up with him to discuss the Valley's drag scene.

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Good 'N Plenty: Announcing SMoCA's Artist Grant Winners of 2013

Photo by Amy Gochoel

Good 'N Plenty artist grants were awarded to Stefanie Francis and Ryan Avery over the weekend at Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art's semi-annual event. The grant was created last year to support "the projects of innovative art makers, wise-crackers and trailblazers based in Arizona."

Grant funding comes from ticket sales and a program at SMoCA's sister organization Scottsdale Public Art that matches those funds for the second-place winner. Because last Friday's event at SMoCA Lounge was sold out, each winner will receive approximately $1,200.

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Tania Katan to Host "The Most Of" Lit Lounge with a Must-See Lineup

Categories: Performance Art

Tania Katan
When Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art announced it was bringing performer, author, and kickass entertainer Tania Katan on board to mix things up a year ago, we knew we were in for something good.

Almost a year later, we've sat in a sold-out SMoCA Lounge a number of times to experience a number of Katan's programs, including Lit Lounge. The event, billed by Katan as "a little rock'n'roll, a little This American Life," is a monthly opportunity to listen to selected authors and performers from Arizona and across the country. These lineups have shared their stories, paired with live music, to a live audience in the SmoCA Lounge.

And this month, Katan's taking Lit Lounge to a whole new level.

See also:
- Letterpress Type Caster Sky Shipley Talks Tradition and the Importance of Preserving the Art Form in this Week's New Times
- She's Back! Allie Brosh's Webcomic Hyperbole and a Half Returns After a Long Hiatus

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Our 10 Favorite Moments from RuPaul's Drag Race: Season 5

Season five of RuPaul's Drag Race is one of the most dramatic seasons to date. Unlike previous seasons, there was no clear winner from the get-go. We had a feeling Sharon Needles and Raja were going to win, and we're still disappointed that Tyra Sanchez beat out Raven and Jujubee in season two.

Jinkx Monsoon seems like a good bet since she excels at comedy and acting challenges. Alaska is another entertaining and funny queen, and Roxxxy Andrews serves up thick and juicy glamour and lots of attitude. We can't wait to see America's Next Drag Superstar get crowned Monday night on Logo. Until then, here's a look at season five's top 10 greatest moments.

See also:

- Five Fierce Films to See Before RuPaul's Drag Race Returns

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We're Doomed: "Tanning Mom" Patricia Krentcil Goes Topless and Untanned (NSFW)

Categories: Performance Art

In this week's reminder of the world's inevitable and fiery end, 45-year-old, shake-and-bake Patricia Krentcil of New Jersey decided it was a good idea to do a topless photo shoot on an unnamed beach.

Fair warning: What you're about to see is a less toasty version of Krentcil, who was under fire (and not just from the sun's surface) for allegedly taking her daughter to a local tanning salon and put her in one of the booths.

"It's like taking your daughter to go food shopping," Krentcil said in 2012. "There's tons of moms that bring their children in."

See also:
- Thanks to New Jersey's Patricia Krentcil: Five Reasons You (and Your 5-Year-Old) Should Stay out of the Tanning Bed

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"Fela!" Performer and Musical Director Aaron Johnson on Afrobeat and the Life of Fela Kuti

Categories: Performance Art

Michelle Williams and Adesola Osakalumi Photo by Carol Rosegg
Fela Kuti was a man of many hats: Afrobeat pioneer, revolutionary, and outspoken crusader for political justice. Music was his weapon, a driving, pulsating, often hypnotic sound mixing jazz, soul, funk, blues and rock with Nigeria's indigenous rhythms, which moved people spiritually and to action as much as it moved them on the dance floor.

With lyrics pointing out corruption, government mismanagement, and an abusive military, Kuti was frequently subjected to beatings and lengthy prison sentences. The Tony Award-winning musical Fela! begins in Lagos in 1978 at a time when Kuti is contemplating leaving his homeland following another oppressive crackdown against him and his followers. Though a series of flashbacks and "flashes to another realm," Kuti's life dramatically unfolds against a colorful club-like backdrop set to near-constant live music.

See also:
- "Sign Painters" is a Visual Portrait of an American Tradition
-John Barrowman (a.k.a. Captain Jack Harkness from Doctor Who and Torchwood) Is Coming to Phoenix Comicon

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