Monday, March 09, 2009

Radiohole Wins the Spalding Gray Award

Courtesy of publicist Alyssa Hart:

Performance Space 122 announces
as recipient of the
Third Spalding Gray Award

Performance Space 122 announced that Radiohole is the recipient of the third Spalding Gray Award. The award is a special commission created in Spalding Gray’s honor by Performance Space 122, together with Kathleen Russo, UCLA Live, and The Walker Arts Center. The recipient of this year’s award receives a full production in the 2009-10 seasons at P.S. 122 and The Walker Art Center in Minneapolis, as well as a stipend for its creation. The Warhol Museum in Pittsburgh was also announced as a partner in the award.

The announcement was celebrated at a performance the National Theater of the United States of America’s (NTUSA) Chautauqua! featuring Vallejo Gantner (P.S. 122’s Artistic Director) as the show’s “guest lecturer”. Radiohole, Kathleen Russo, widow of Spalding Gray, and their son Theo Gray, joined in the festivities and were also part of the show. The National Theater of the United States of America was the second recipient in 2007 and Chautauqua! was developed through the award. Chautauqua! continues at P.S. 122 through March 15.

According to Mr. Gantner, Radiohole were the perfect match for this year’s SGA “Because Radiohole embody a kind of constant kinetic chaos – dragging from source materials as varied as fried chicken, Greek and Norse myth, the music of Finding Nemo, and now Douglas Sirk and John Milton. In making their work and creating their space in Williamsburg they defined the genre on their terms, as they saw it or at least as they wished it to be sawn. [sic]”

By most accounts Radiohole was founded in 1998 not far from the International Bar on 2nd Avenue by Erin Douglass, Eric Dyer, Maggie Hoffman and Scott Halverson Gillette. They were then and are now splintered, intoxicated, out of their minds and in love. They have since produced nine original shows and toured in the U.S. and Europe. Their most recent production ANGER/NATION was seen at the Kitchen in September 2008. They premiered FLUKE at P.S 122 in the Spring of 2006. In 2000, Radiohole got together with the Collapsable Giraffe (sic) to found The Collapsable Hole, a former auto body shop (and before that, German restaurant) in Williamsburg, Brooklyn that they and the Collapsable Giraffe converted to make their shared artistic home. Radiohole has supported the work of many of downtown & Brooklyn’s leading theatrical innovators through its Associated Holes program offering free or low cost rehearsal, development and performance space at the Collapsable Hole. Examples of such Associated Holes are NTUSA, Banana Bag & Bodice, Immediate Medium, ERS and Young Jean Lee's Theater Company to name a few.

In reaction to the upcoming production that will be developed Radiohole says, “Relative to previous attempts at explosion, this attempt will have a greater degree of heat. The little hairs on our hands may get singed off. It is our sincere hope, however, that given sufficient heat, we may be able to forge together the holes of many separate holes breeding sources into one great hole, erupting into a great ball of flame and emitting a full spectrum of noise; we will then dub this a Performance.”

They continue by saying, “As far as winning something called the Spalding Gray Award, it's wonderful (it's wonderful to win, especially when you are a loser baby) but I think it would be strange to win an award by that name and not be just a little freaked out... but we'll try to do with it what we always try to do, which is make something utterly confusing, bizarre, true, beautiful and a little bit wet. When you are given something called the Spalding Gray Award, I think you have to do that.”

The Andy Warhol Museum is pleased and honored to join Performance Space 122 and The Walker Arts Center as a partner of the Spalding Gray Award consortium. Since launching the Museum’s performance series, Off the Wall, with P.S.122 almost nine years ago, The Warhol has been committed to supporting innovative, multi-disciplinary performance, and this dynamic partnership is a perfect next step in the evolution of the series and supporting the creation and touring of new work.

The Spalding Gray Award supports gifted writer/performers who fully realize both aspects of Spalding’s legacy, who are fearless innovators of theatrical form, who reach into daily experience and create resonant, transcendent work that makes us all bigger, wider, wiser and, somehow, more than we were when we entered the theater. The Award Committee is Vallejo Gantner (P.S. 122), Philip Bither (Walker Arts Center), Ben Harrison (The Warhol), and Kathleen Russo.

Gray long considered P.S. 122 a creative home-base, and it is still home to his signature desk. Gray developed and created Morning, Noon and Night, Gray on Gray and Interviewing the Audience at P.S. 122, where he was working on Life Interrupted at the time of his death.

The two previous recipients include Heather Woodbury (2006), and National Theater of the United States of America (NTUSA) in 2007.

Performance Space 122 is New York's ultimate destination for cutting-edge theatre, dance, music, live art and cross-media. Founded in 1979, Performance Space 122 is dedicated to supporting and presenting artists whose work challenges the traditional boundaries of dance, theatre, music, and performance. Committed to exploring innovative form as well as material, P.S. 122 is steadfast in its search for pioneering artists from a diversity of cultures and points of view.

The Walker Art Center (Minneapolis, Minnesota) is an internationally recognized contemporary art organization focused on the visual, performing and media arts of our time. The Walker's Performing Arts Program regularly commissions and presents a wide range of new performance work (as well as dance and new music) and presented the work of Spalding Gray through much of his career.

The Andy Warhol Museum (Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania) is more than a museum; The Warhol is a vital forum in which diverse audiences of artists, scholars and the general public are galvanized through creative interaction with the art and life of Andy Warhol, The Andy Warhol Museum is ever-changing and constantly re-defining itself in relation to contemporary life, using its unique collections and dynamic, interactive programming as tools.

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