Joey Arias & Kristian Hoffman to Bring LIGHTNING STRIKES to Feinstein's at the Nikko, 10/24
Following a successful engagement at Joe's Pub in New York City, Joey Arias and Kristian Hoffman bring their acclaimed show Lightning Strikes to Feinstein's at the Nikko for one performance only - Thursday, October 24 at 8 p.m. Located within Hotel Nikko (222 Mason Street, San Francisco), Feinstein's at the Nikko presents a wide range of entertainers from stage and screen all within an intimate 140-seat cabaret setting. There is a $20 food and beverage minimum per person inside the showroom which guests can use towards cocktails as well as a variety of small plates crafted exclusively for Feinstein's at the Nikko by Executive Chef Philippe Striffeler, through Restaurant Anzu. Cheese and dessert platters will also be available in the showroom. Tickets for Joey Arias and Kristian Hoffman range in price from $25-$35 and are available now by calling 866.663.1063 or visiting www.ticketweb.com.
Borrowed from the title of a Klaus Nomi song, Lightning Strikes marks the first collaboration between New York icon Arias and acclaimed singer/songwriter Hoffman - two veterans of the fertile East Village Art Scene of the 1980's and close friends and collaborators of the late German counter-tenor. In addition to a Nomi song or two, Lightning Strikesfeatures a mix 70's rock anthems, popular standards, original material and Arias' signature 'channeling' of Billie Holiday. Lightning Strikes debuted in Los Angeles earlier this year and toured to Portland, Salt Lake City, Seattle and New York. A European tour is being planned for early 2014 in conjunction with what would have been Nomi's 70th birthday.
A fixture of New York City's vibrant downtown performance scene for 30-plus years, Joey Arias is a bona fide NYC icon. Most recently, Joey headlined Central Park SummerStage and playEd Royal Albert Hall in London as part of the Antony-curated Meltdown Festival. He also stars in "Z Chromosome," a short film directed by Manfred (Thierry) Mugler which opened the 18th Annual Chéries-Chéris Festival this past October in Paris.
Arias lived and worked with legendary musician Klaus Nomi until Nomi's death in 1983. However, he long ago stepped out of Nomi's shadow to gain fame in his own right as a performance artist, cabaret singer and drag artist. From outrageous performances at seminal New York nightclubs Jackie 60 and Squeezebox to the now-legendary nights at Bar d'O where he held court with Raven-O and Sherry Vine, Arias has distinguished himself with scandalous wit, sleek style and an extraordinary voice... evocative of Billie Holiday yet uniquely his own. "Strange Fruit," Arias' tribute to Lady Day ran for a year at the Astor Place Theater in New York and received a glowing notice from John Lahr in the New Yorker.
Arias originated the role of the Mistress of Seduction in Cirque du Soleil's Las Vegas spectacular Zumanity, for which he co-wrote two songs. After six years in that role, Arias returned to New York with a splash as the star of Arias with a Twist, a show he co-created with master puppeteer Basil Twist. The show was a critical and commercial hit (Ben Brantley memorably began his New York Times review of the show, "Eat your heart out, Madonna!") and extended repeatedly for a total of eight months at HERE Arts Center. Arias with a Twist has been subsequently presented in Los Angeles, Washington DC and Paris and returned to New York for another critically acclaimed, encore 8-week run at Abrons Arts Center in Fall 2011. The "Arias with a Twist" docu-fantasy premiered at the Berlin Film Festival and had its US premiere at the 2011 TriBeca Film Festival. Arias last performed in San Francisco at the Castro Theatre with his Valentine's Day concert extravaganza, Love Swings.
In 2010 Arias returned to New York City with his first full-length concerts in over a decade. Joey Arias in Concert - featuring new jazz luminary Ben Allison and a band comprised of some of NYC's best musicians - played to sold-out houses for two weeks at Abrons Arts Center. A scaled down version of the show opened the Spiegeltent at Bard SummerScape in 2011. Arias has performed worldwide at venues including Carnegie Hall, The Freedom Theatre in London and on a transatlantic world tour into the cabaret clubs of Paris, Tokyo, Moscow, Germany, Finland, Estonia, Canada and England. Film credits include: "Mondo New York," "Big Top Pee Wee," "Elvira, Mistress of the Dark," "Wigstock - The Movie," "Flawless" and "To Wong Foo, Thanks for Everything! Julie Newmar." Television credits include the infamous "Saturday Night Live" episode with David Bowie and Klaus Nomi, Ann Magnuson's "Vandemonium" (Cinemax), "Elvira's MTV Halloween Special," HBOs "Dragtime," HBO's "Real Sex" and "Gayer than Gay" on VH1, along with numerous appearances on a wide variety of talk shows and programs. Arias' discography includes: "Arias on Holiday," "Strange Fruit," "Jazzo Lozo," "God Shave the Queen" and live recordings of "StarLust in Berlin," "Arias with a Twist" and "Bar D'o in New York."
Kristian Hoffman is a singer, songwriter, producer and in-demand musical collaborator. He formed his first band, Mumps, with high school friend Lance Loud shortly after they had both made dramatic appearances in what is now known as "the first reality T.V. series: PBS' award winning "An American Family". Flourishing for about five years in the New York club scene in the late '70s, Mumps drew musical comparisons to The Move, The Kinks, and Sparks, and stylistic comparisons to the New York Dolls. Lance was the flamboyant singer, Kristian the songwriter and keyboard player.
While still performing as Mumps, Lance and Kristian subsequently appeared in a show called "New Wave Vaudeville," produced by Ann Magnuson, who became a life-long collaborator of Hoffman's. (He produced, arranged, and played multiple instruments on Magnuson's "Pretty Songs and Ugly Stories.") At New Wave Vaudeville Hoffman met Klaus Nomi, the eccentric legendary German counter-tenor mutant glam virtuoso visionary. Kristian approached Klaus Nomi about forming a band, and his ensuing collaborations with Klaus included writing several songs for him, including "Total Eclipse," which was featured in the rock and roll movie "Urgh! A Music War." Hoffman also collaborated with "No Wave" artists including Lydia Lunch and James Chance.
Hoffman has recorded and released four albums of his own including the critically acclaimed 2010 release "FOP" and the 2002 release "&," a collection of duets with artists including Russell Mael of Sparks, Rufus Wainwright, Maria McKee, El Vez, Paul Reubens (aka Pee Wee Herman), Anna Waronker, Lydia Lunch, Stew ("Passing Strange"), and MagnusoN. Hoffman served Music Director for Rufus Wainwright's first touring band, and he frequently tours with El Vez.
All seating at Feinstein's at the Nikko is cabaret style and available on a first-come, first-served basis within the section purchased. Guests who purchase the prix-fixe dinner at Restaurant Anzu will receive a complimentary section upgrade (subject to availability) and get to choose their exact seat locations within the upgraded section.
Guests of Feinstein's at the Nikko can enjoy a variety of food and beverage options before performances. Kanpai Lounge, located in Hotel Nikko's lobby, offers light cuisine, a full bar and specialty cocktails. Restaurant Anzu, Hotel Nikko's intimate restaurant located on the second floor, serves sustainable California cuisine enhanced with Asian flavors. Restaurant Anzu will also offer Feinstein's at the Nikko guests a special three-course prix-fixe dinner ($45 per person) prior to all performances. Reservations can be made by calling (415) 394-1100.