the 20 people who make D
Gaithersburg native Brynn Tucker, 27, didn't take a formal dance class until her freshman year of college, but she's always been inclined to express herself through motion. In 2009 she joined Synetic Theater, the movement based theater company founded by husband and wife team Paata and Irina Tsikurishvili, and has since appeared as Guinevere in the troupe's 2010 production of King Arthur and as Queen Anne in this year's production of The Three Musketeers. She debuted her first solo show, A Guide to Dancing Naked, at this summer's Capital Fringe Festival. The lively physical piece, which encourages audiences to shake it in their birthday suits, won the festival's Audience Award for Best Dance Physical Theatre performance. Caroline Jones
People are very limited in their movement, like people hardly ever put their arms over their heads, and my show focuses on breaking free of that but creating your own space for it. It can be in your living room, your closet, your kitchen, whatever you want. because I know a lot of people do CrossFit, yoga, and all that stuff but I challenge people to dance naked because it's really simple: All you need is a mirror, some music, and your naked self. Taking the time to do that by yourself is really important, especially getting naked. When you strip yourself of all of that, you're pretty much your raw self, and I don't think people get a lot of opportunities to do that. It's about getting people grounded and checking in with themselves at the end of the day. transplants, New York state native Alex Bearman, 33, fell in with the intramural sports crowd when he moved to the District in 2003. He teamed up with soccer nonprofit District Sports a year later, and by 2009, Bearman took over as director. Since then, the organization, which returns part of its membership dues to the community, has grown from about 80 to 250 teams, encompassing 3,500 participants and 13,000 registrations per year. Bearman still plays for his own team, the Badass Panthers. Alexis Hauk
I look around and I think the league is more diverse than it's ever been. I see the same guys who are playing pickup at Tubman on weeknights also playing in District Sports games. So I think we've made it accessible to them. But frankly, I don't know if we've done enough. There's been some talk about trying to maybe just rent the space for them so we'll start our rental time at 6:30 even though we're not starting the league game until 7:30, to allow for an hour just for open play for community members, so we can protect that, because it's important. Unfortunately, for better or worse, the gates to the field are locked. I think there's a number of issues at play there.
I was a page in the Senate in high school for Sen. Ted Kennedy. And that's when I really started putting it together: There's something messed Cheap Jerseys up about the fact that we all pay taxes and we don't have representation.
After 212 years of it not happening, I wouldn't put any money on it happening in a [specific] year. I think it can happen in the next 10 years. I really do. But it's only going to happen if more of us get involved. If every single District citizen gets involved and does a little part. The fact that 55 Senate offices say that we were the first person they've heard from in the District about statehood, it's ridiculous. If we don't take ownership of it as a city and a people, it's not going to happen.
I think that it's challenging to try to introduce new things into a system where people are used to the old way of doing things. You've got campaign operatives who've been doing politics in the city for decades, who are used to certain systems; you've got advocates who have been looking at campaign finance reports for years who have an opinion about what needs to change; and then you've got elected officials who have opinions as well. So I think trying to arrive at a balanced approach to improve the system was a challenge.
I was disappointed because that was never a part of our deliberations. I think people approached this task in earnest. We were working over the summer, during recess. We were meeting regularly. We were reading through the materials. We were interviewing witnesses. We really took this task seriously and we put in a lot of effort, and I don't think anybody who was associated with that committee had any ulterior motive except for to look into the allegations and to see if it warranted additional sanctions. rappers angling to follow you know who to national stardom. In conversation he speaks sparingly and carefully, but with the same seriousness and intensity of his breakout mixtapes, Law, Fxck Rap, and Law 2. His ability to make both traumatized, emotional street salvos and aggressive, head busting bangers places him in a lineage of streets oriented regional rap legends stretching from Houston's Scarface to Baton Rouge's Lil Boosie. With his next mixtape, El Jefe, due out in 2014, however, Glizzy may be poised for something bigger than hometown hero status.
I think that there's an extraordinary wealth of culture here. There's a real population of readers and people interested in ideas. is that it's not what you first think of about the city the arts and literature and yet you've got this community of very curious, very interested, engaged [readers]. I think that has something to do with it not being the dominant assumed culture of the place.
Wow. I think that there are a number of examples and that was what the District of Literature program was, in part, about. literature, and it's not just federal, it's not just novels about what goes on inside the federal government or the CIA. There are terrific works about our neighborhoods and the fabric of this city. Probably, the book that, to me, is just an extraordinary look at the city is Lost in the City by Edward P. Jones. It's an exceptional book in its own right and it's so particular to place. Without in some broad, conceptual way talking about the city, it talks about the history of the city.
We focused on listening to what the community needs and wants and then trying to deliver on that. King [Ave. Adams. But the whole time looking for and seeking out a restaurant operator that was willing to go in there and have a sit down, wait staff and bar restaurant. And finally Uniontown was able to come about. That was completely in response to what we heard in community meetings. The Hive, the Anacostia Playhouse all of those are coming out of community input, rather than me as a developer coming in.
Yeah, but we did land use meetings in McLean also, and in McLean or Shaw or Lamond Riggs or Anacostia, it's all the same at the end of the day. People live there. You don't. People want to be respected, they want to know that their opinions have been heard. You can't always do everything that people want you to do, but it is not my neighborhood. It's their neighborhood. And I hope that people appreciate that there's a sincere effort to make a better neighborhood and not just a profit. But we do still have to make a profit I've gotta pay the bills. area may have more than 70 theater companies, but they often leave little space for artists searching for new ways of creating work. Efforts like the Capital Fringe Festival, local playwright initiatives, and companies creating "devised" theater have helped disrupt the old methods of making theater, at least for disruptive types. What makes 32 year old dramaturg and "creative trainer" Hannah Hessel Ratner's Project Gym different is its focus not just on the development of theater but also the development of theater artists. During its sessions on Sundays and Tuesdays, it's a place for creating and refining plays, sure, but it's also a place where artists can figure out what a play, or acting, or theater, means to them. Oh, and sometimes there are puppets. Jonathan L. Fischer
The idea took shape when I was in graduate school studying dramaturgy and looking at new play development specifically, and thinking that the new play development system was only churning out more of the same kind of work and wasn't doing anything to move the field forward or to look at other kinds of performative art that were happening. I was at Columbia University, and the visual art program was doing a tremendous amount of performance based work at the time. theater, we're constantly going from show to show to show, and there's no real time to grow as an artist beyond the specific show you are working on. So the idea was, "How can we create new work that's not already built into the model that we have. How can we collaborate more? How can we generate new ideas?"
People bring in work at various stages, so there are the very, very beginnings of ideas and sometimes those develop into things and keep growing and keep growing, and sometimes they don't. I think either way is fine, because both are opportunities for artists to explore and failure, or deciding something isn't right for the moment, is certainly a part of that cheap prom dresses exploration. I have seen things get worked on that have then continued to be worked on in other places. And I think one of the things artists have found really exciting about Project Gym is the opportunity to connect with artists they didn't already know.
Puppet day was this past Sunday. The first half hour of the session is really just a warmup. Part of that is purely physical stretches, moving, walk in a circle, walk faster, all sorts of silly get the body moving things. Sometimes we'll play a game. We created an excellent version of duck duck goose where instead of using duck duck goose, you can use any animalThen, one artist leads a workshop, and that can be on anything they have that they can share and teach with the groupAnd then in the second half of the session, one artist leads what I call "project time." For some artists it's "I'm bringing in a script, and I want to look at a specific scene," or "I want to do an improv of something I'm thinking about and I want to generate new ideas through improv."
For this past week it was Matthew Pauli, who is an amazing clown and actor and puppeteer. And he basically brought in his whole bag of puppets. He's interested in using puppetry for a clown piece he's using for next year's [Maryland] Renaissance Festival. So he's like, "I just want to see people play with the puppets I already have just so I can learn new things about them." It was a fairly loose session where everyone grabbed a puppet. We have our sessions at the Round House Education Center, which has a great studio room with a mirrored wall, which is fantastic for puppetry. He and I are following up to talk about what he learned and what are the next steps, and if there is something he wants to focus on. We were talking about how at his next one we'll learn how to make puppets. So that was Sunday. Pretty great. Working at Middendorf Gallery, he promoted the best photographers in town before launching his own gallery in 1993. Some things have changed at Hemphill Fine Arts, which turns 20 this year. Hemphill moved the space from Georgetown to 14th Street NW in December 2004, a harbinger of such rapid change that other, newer galleries along the corridor have already been hyper gentrified out. Hemphill isn't going anywhere and neither are his artists. (In 20 years running Hemphill, only three artists have left his stable.) Hemphill says that he's weathered good times and bad by building relationships that last, and by adapting his practice to fit them. Kriston Capps
The late '80s, early '90s, was a severe economic downturn. I rode around my bike for a year. I had about a year where there was no job out there for me. I interviewed at Christie's for a position in the photo department there. The pay was so bad I wasn't even interested in the job. I interviewed for a couple curatorial jobs, but I didn't quite carry myself the way curators carry themselves. My metabolism wasn't right for that environment. I had no money. I thought, what've I got to lose? I got letters of recommendation and went to the landlord for the space we had in Georgetown. At the time I signed that lease the total of the lease for the five year period was $400,000 or $500,000 I had $500 in the bank. They were so desperate for someone they didn't look carefully at me, and my letters for recommendation were so nice, from major collectors and board members. The great thing about starting a gallery when the art market is at the bottom is that you always feel like you are winning.
In the fall of the stock market and the credit markets in 2008, I knew how bad it was going to be. I didn't know how long it was going to take. I built these relationships with certain law firms back when I was with Middendorf, and that expanded as the boom in law firms increased. We had three or four of the largest law firms in town, and most of those law firms were national or international firms. They all all they all disappeared starting the summer before. In 2007, we had a canary in the coal mine. We came back here [to the gallery] after certain meetings where they said, "We're not going to buy art anymore," and there were different ways they said it, but basically, that was the message. We came back here and said, "Shit."
People think galleries open up, and a lot of younger galleries do this right off, because someone says, "I know what's great art, and I'm going show these 10 artists and they're the greatest artists and you should buy them." It's a condescending attitude. Having come from an art background, it's very easy to slip into that, thinking it's your aesthetic that people should enjoy. I never really thought that I had a superior vision. I thought I had a superior way with art. I didn't necessarily have to show one kind of art or another, which actually meant that I could put together a gallery where, hopefully, no one of the artists are competing with each other except for real estate. I want that wall/no I want that wall, no I paint the best paintings of squares/no I paint the best cheap evening dresses online paintings of squares. Sometimes a collector will say to me, "What do you have in your house?" That's none of your fucking business. You should be strong enough to buy the thing that you relate to.
By looking back at me every five seconds, for one. Or speeding up or crossing the street. I got very frustrated at the fact that it really wasn't anything that I did or I could do. So I ended up doing this [piece]. It was just an empty room with a bunch of different silhouettes of myself outlined in different colors. And there was a color changing light that I installed in the space as well. The hook was that the poses of my silhouette ranged across a spectrum from aggressive [to] a defeated, hands down, shoulders slumped kind of pose. It was an NFL Jerseys Wholesale unspoken thing that the only crime reported on the crime alerts was black and Hispanic men. And nobody was questioning how maybe that could create an environment of subtle aggression towards [black and Hispanic] tudents. So I was telling this nonlinear story about the mental state of somebody who has to deal with this. That style of storytelling is something that I have employed throughout my work.
My first official performance was at the University of Maryland. The event was called "The Way We End It." So it was Kunj [Patel], Wilmer [Wilson IV], and myself, and we just did a daylong performance exhibition. [I had a bike, and] I replaced the back wheel with the fan, and the fan was attached to the monster, so it would inflate and lunge towards me I basically brought it to life by biking. At that time, the two major parallel stories both symbolic and literal were the Deepwater Horizon oil spill that had happened where it's petroleum products being a source of both prosperity and death, and it's created by humans but got way bigger than any one human can deal with. I was really into Golems at the time, and their symbolic reference and [this] idea of creating something bigger than yourself. So that piece ended up being about the machinations that are set in motion by humans but spin out of their own control and that is what the petroleum situation has been.
Catch even a short set from local stand up comic Jenn Tisdale, and you'll leave knowing a whole lot about Jenn Tisdale. The 33 year old Fort Totten resident derives a hefty portion of her material from her own life she's got caustic jokes about not knowing her dad, moving back in with her mom, happy stuff like that. But Tisdale's biggest reveal yet wasn't a bit in her stand up act. It was the dirty movie she made with boyish porn prince James Deen. She says she did it for the story and she'll never, ever do porn again. For Tisdale, it's back to the open mics. Ally Schweitzer
I'm surprised. I wasn't a big fan of making them all one color; I thought there were a lot of other things we needed to do. But the mayor wanted it, and you know, that carries a lot of weight with me. But when I started to see it, I began to realize that they gave a whole different impression to the vehicle than all this ragtag different colors, signs, and everything else that kind of really didn't catch the eye. People didn't feel particularly excited about them. The things I've heard from people now say, "Oh boy, I like taking these, they really look like taxi cabs."
The closest we came was I was approached once by an individual who will be unnamed that I knew and knew me and knew well, interested in towing that our hack inspectors when they impound, they have to send for towing. He wanted to know what it would take to get his towing company included in our list. And I said, "It's very simple, all you have to do is file an application, show that you have the necessary business licenses, paid all the necessary taxes, have a facility, have drivers, have vehicles that are safe, and we put you on the list and you're called on a rotational basis. There's no contracts or anything." Well, they weren't interested in that.
I was recruited by the city administrator, who strongly recommended me to the mayor. After discussions with the mayor, I agreed to do this challenge. I would say from a personal standpoint, that was in June of 2011, and I had lost my wife in April, after a short marriage of 55 and a half years. I was sort of feeling pretty sorry for myself, with a lot of time. Even though I was doing consulting work and I was working for [construction firm] McKissack McKissack on school modernization. Nevertheless, it wasn't really demanding on me to the point where I was putting my problems behind me. So I saw this as something that would really preocccupy me. And if I knew then what I knew now, I probably wouldn't have taken it.