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Dael Orlandersmith Will Celebrate Her 60th Birthday With The Wild Project


Dael Orlandersmith celebrates her 60th birthday with a special benefit evening at the Wild Project. The event takes place on Saturday, November 23 at 7 pm at Wild Project (195 E. 3rd Street, between Avenues A & B). Tickets are $60 - $100 (including food and drink) and will benefit the Wild Project's mission and programming. Advance tickets can be purchased online at

As spaces for artists in the East Village and Lower East Side disappear, the mission of the Wild Project remains more vital than ever. Dael Orlandersmith says "The best birthday present imaginable is to support spaces for artists. We need art now more than ever. That the Wild Project continues to house and nurture multidiscipline artists - photography, music, dance, painting, all kinds of writing, plus there's a space for kids who are interested in the arts - is a tremendous undertaking. These spaces are now too few and far between."

"We are proud of the diversity of programming and artists and that we continue to be a space of inclusion in our community," says Wild Project artistic director Ana Mari de Quesada. "But it's not without its challenges, particularly financial. Small non-profits like ours - the ones that truly serve their economically and racially diverse communities - are in danger from soaring real estate prices and gentrification. The support of our board members like Dael Orlandersmith, Alan Cumming, and David Cale, as well as all the talented and unique artists that walk through our doors, is heartening and inspiring."

Proceeds benefit the Wild Project's mission to supporting the diverse independent theater, film, music, dance, visual arts and spoken-word artists of NYC. A space for artists in the East Village/LES to create, experiment, and call their home.

Hosted by NY nightlife legends Chi Chi Valenti and Paul Alexander and featuring DJs Mrs. Robinson, this birthday tribute features three hours of performances and readings by supporters of NYC's first eco-friendly theater, which has been the heart of the East Village performing arts scene since 2007.

Chi Chi Valenti has spent four decades shaping and chronicling New York City's nightclub demi-monde, from The Mudd Club through her own clubs Jackie 60 and MOTHER and beyond.

Paul Alexander is most notably known for the 1990's performance art-dance party Jackie 60 where he honed his vocal emcee and performance skills. Following many solo underground dance singles he gained international success with the dance-pop trio The Ones, known for their #1 Dance/#7 Pop hit Flawless.

DJs Mrs. Robinson are Amber Martin and Angela Di Carlo. Aside from being celebrated performing artists, singers, and comedians, these two have been spinning records all over the city at such venues as The Ace Hotel, Balthazar, Schillers, Club Cumming, as well as private parties and events for MAC Cosmetics, Hedwig & the Angry Inch on Broadway and the Tony Awards. They can currently be found alongside John Cameron Mitchell DJing the Mattachine Party monthly at Julius Bar.

Set 1 Performances By:

Elena Alexander is a poet and writer. In 2019, her work can be found in The Body in Language: An Anthology, and The Brooklyn Rail. She received Honorable Mention, The
O. Henry Awards Prize Stories, Best of 1997, and her poem, "How the Lurking" was made into a public poster.

Eszter Balint

John Carlin (actor, songwriter, activist) Recent work: Turn Me Loose (with Joe Morton - NYC, LA, DC); America Is Hard To See (NYC, Edinburgh Fringe); Oklahoma! (Bard Summerscape). A former RCA Recording artist, John is also a proud member of Reverend Billy & The Stop Shopping Choir, with whom he's traveled to Ferguson, MO., Standing Rock, ND., and toured with Neil Young and Pussy Riot!
Cynthia Carr is the author, most recently, of Fire in the Belly: The Life and Times of David Wojnarowicz. She was an arts writer for The Village Voice from 1984 until 2003.
Michael Laurence is the playwright/performer of Hamlet in Bed (Rattlestick and Edinburgh) and Krapp, 39 (Drama Desk nomination, NYC/London/Dublin). Broadway and Off-Bway credits include Talk Radio, Appropriate, Opus, The Few, and Dael Orlandersmith's Horsedreams. Recurring TV: Shades of Blue, Damages, Blacklist.

Heather Litteer is an actress playwright and poet. She is La MaMa resident actor, Member of Big Art Group and The Jackie Factory. Toured her one-woman show Lemonade from NYC to London and back. A Fox Fellow and Howl! Arts Fellowship recipient.

Romy Nordlinger's, Playwright/Actor, credits as writer/performer include "PLACES" solo play based on the life of Alla Nazimova @Kennedy Center, Dixon Place, 59E59 & "Lipshtick" @ Dixon Place. Recent TV includes FBI & Bull (CBS) and Law & Order (NBC).

Set 2 Performances By:
Drunell Gross
Bob Holman

Patricia Spears Jones is a poet and writer whose most recent collection A LUCENT FIRE: New and Selected Poems was a finalist for the Paterson Poetry Prize and she is the 2017 Jackson Poetry Prize winner and author of 9 other poetry publications and editor of two anthologies. Two musical theater works were commissioned and produced by Mabou Mines.

Honor Molloy, playwright and the author of the novel Smarty Girl - Dublin Savage. A former Radcliffe Institute Fellow, she is the recipient of three NYFA Fellowships.

Dael Orlandersmith Pulitzer Finalist for her play Yellowman and now currently doing her acclaimed play UNTIL THE FLOOD which premiered at Rattlestick in 2017 and has been done at Goodman /ACT Seattle/ Portland Centerstage and this past Summer at Galway Arts Festival, Edinburgh and at the Arcola Theatre in London. In 2020 it will be at the Kirk Douglas Theatre- part of Center Theatre Group - in LA, Arena Stage in DC, and Denver Arts Center.

Bina Sharif is an award-winning playwright/actor/director and a visual artist. She was nominated for the Joseph Jefferson award for best supporting actress at Goodman Theater in Chicago. She is the author of 33 produced plays in the USA and abroad.
Edwin Torres is the author of ten books of poetry, including Xoeteox: the infinite word object, "Ameriscopia," and editor of "The Body In Language: An Anthology" published by Counterpath Press. Edwin began his performing life in the East Village and is thrilled to walk these charged streets once again!

Set 3 Performances By:
David Cale and Matthew Dean Marsh's first collaboration We're Only Alive for A Short Amount of Time premiered on the main stage of The Goodman Theatre, Chicago and opened in NYC this past summer at The Public Theater. For We're Only Alive for A Short Amount of Time Cale and Marsh recently received the 2019 Joseph Jefferson Award for New Work - Musical.

Robbie McCauley

Joe McGintly

Rome Neal Is the Artistic Theatre Director of the Nuyorican Poets Café theatre program. Mr. Neal received an Obie Grant with Café founder Miguel Algarin for excellence in theatre. Mr. Neal also received two Audelcos for his acting: one for Lead Actor in Gabrielle N. Lane's "SIGNS," and one for Solo Performance in his critically acclaimed "MONK," by Laurence Holder. Neal also received the National Black Theatre Festival's coveted Lloyd Richards Director's Award.

Carl Handcock Rux

Felice Rosser and Nao Hakamada (Faith NYC) of the pioneering soul/reggae/rock group Faith NYC will play intimate acoustic versions of their songs.

Tammy Faye Starlite

Anna Steegmann

The Wild Project thanks their advisory board members David Cale, Alan Cumming and Dael Orlandersmith for their continued support of the Wild Project.

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