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Foote Directs the Knockout Drops' Escape from Bellevue, Dec. 2-Jan. 14

Escape From Bellevue and Other Stories, directed by Horton Foote Jr. and produced by Knockout Drops and Victoria DeRose, will make its off-Broadway debut with a special engagement at New York City's Paradise Factory Theater (64 East 4th Street). The show will run from December 2nd, 2005 through January 14th, 2006.

"Written and performed by Christopher John Campion, the talented and dynamic frontman for seminal downtown rock band Knockout Drops, Escape From Bellevue and Other Stories moves fluidly from scripted monologues of Campion's twisted, autobiographical tales to full-blown band performances of the songs inspired by these real-life escapades. Alternately raucous and reflective, irreverently funny and unflinchingly honest, this music-driven multimedia show also interweaves special segue visual content conceived by Campion, including video vignettes directed by videographer/photographer Chris Cassidy, and surrealist animated sequences by artist Alex Gardega. The result is a unique 90-minute rock-n-roll odyssey that promises to give music fans and concertgoers, comedy lovers and avant-garde theater audiences alike a brand new live entertainment experience," according to production notes.

"Since 1963, no patient has successfully escaped from behind the electronic doors at Manhattan's famously foreboding Bellevue Hospital. That is, none until Chris Campion earned that dubious distinction. Between 1998 and 2000, Campion landed there on three separate ignominious occasions—or, two-and-a-half times, if you factor in his hilariously brazen escape, a feat that makes him 'The Steve McQueen of rock-n-roll,' he muses. At the center of this chronicle is Campion's spiraling, indulgent rock-n-roll lifestyle, which takes him to some bizarre places over the years--most notably, Bellevue, where he brings the audience inside for a bird's-eye view of the cuckoo's nest and its inhabitants, and where his cunning subsequent getaway is a key part of the saga."

Coinciding with the stage production, Knockout Drops are simultaneously releasing an 11-song record of the same name in the first week of December. Produced by the band's guitarist, Tom Licameli, at his Kaleidoscope Soundworks studio, it features the entire soundtrack from the stage production, plus a few additional tracks.

Knockout Drops frequently perform and sell out shows at many of the City's most notable venues, including Irving Plaza, Bowery Ballroom, Knitting Factory, Mercury Lounge, and more. In the past year, the band has expanded its concert circuit, performing three tours in Europe, where the Drops have been building a fan base touring behind the critically acclaimed 2003 release of "Killed By the Lights" (Circus Clone Records), which was chosen as one of the Top 10 Albums of the Year by Newsday. Escape From Bellevue and Other Stories is the band's second full-length album in two years. Knockout Drops features Christopher John Campion (lead vocals), Tom Licameli (guitar/vocals), Phil Mastrangelo (bass/vocals), and Vinny Cimino (drums).

For more information about the stage production and the band, visit www.knockoutdrops.com . Click on the link on the website's homepage to view a lively nine-minute electronic press preview, including show highlights, partial monologues, music excerpts, and multimedia vignettes—as well as interviews with Campion and director Horton Foote Jr. A member of the theatrical family that also includes his playwright father and his actress sister Hallie, Foote was seen off-Broadway in Laura Dennis and on film in Infinity, The Water Engine, Blood Red and others.

For tickets and performance schedules, call SmartTix (212-868-4444) or log on to www.smarttix.com.
All tickets are $20 (general admission). Performances are scheduled every Friday and Saturday evening, from December 2 - January 14, except December 24. The total running time is 90 minutes without intermission; showtime is 9:00 pm.

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