Out of Character: Rants, Raves, and Monologues from Today's Top Performance Artists

Out of Character: Rants, Raves, and Monologues from Today's Top Performance Artists

by Mark Russell
     
 
The first-ever anthology of selections from the work of more than 30 of today's most influential and accomplished live performance artists, edited by the artistic director of P.S. 122, the alternative theater at which many of the artists launched their careers. Talents include Eric Bogosian, Spalding Gray, Denis Leary, John Leguizamo, Laurie Anderson, and many more.

Overview

The first-ever anthology of selections from the work of more than 30 of today's most influential and accomplished live performance artists, edited by the artistic director of P.S. 122, the alternative theater at which many of the artists launched their careers. Talents include Eric Bogosian, Spalding Gray, Denis Leary, John Leguizamo, Laurie Anderson, and many more.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Miller, the artistic director at Performance Space 122 in New York, has seen plenty of "performance artists," and here he collects the work of 32 solo performers who draw on theater, dance and stand-up comedy to push the boundaries of storytelling. While many well-known practitioners of this amorphous genre are included, such as Eric Bogosian, Holly Hughes, John Leguizamo, Spalding Gray and Reno-others, like Karen Finley and Ann Magnuson, are absent. Miller acknowledges that since the essence of these artists' work is live performance, this book-script excerpts plus introductory notes for each performer-can't fully capture the subject. Some of the material here still shines: Lisa Kron's hilarious narration of humiliation; Tim Miller's poignant evocation of the death of a lover from AIDS; Danny Hoch's take on a white boy channeling hip-hop rhythms. Then again, some work comes off as self-indulgent or obscure, and some of the most boundary-pushing performers, like transsexual Kate Bornstein, or Ron Athey, the tattooed, HIV-positive performance artist who sometimes bleeds during his show, probably need to be seen, not read. Some contributors offer useful reflections on the creative process; David Cale compares his work to songwriting; Gray calls his work "oral composition." Unfortunately, editor Miller chooses not to explore trends and themes here and the reader must wade through a certain amount of dross to glean insights. Photos. (Jan.)

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780553374858
Publisher:
Bantam Books
Publication date:
12/01/1996
Pages:
288
Product dimensions:
5.99(w) x 9.01(h) x 0.91(d)

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