On the first Tuesday of each month The News, presented by SOMArts Cultural Center, features new, queer work by Bay Area artists. The News is a monthly cabaret evening that spotlights 10-minute or less performance pieces, experiments, and works in progress by pre-selected solo artists, groups, or troupes.
“Expect toilets, tigers, tapestries, sonic subversion and post-modern dance curiosities from hella queer hot artists straight out of Oakland,” said November’s guest curator and host, seeley quest.
The evening will include new work by Caleb Feigin (The Lady Run Over By History), Frida Ibarra, Xandra Ibarra (La Chica Boom), NCN, Jai Arun Ravine and Lyric Seal.
The nature of The News is to give artists access to critical space for risk-taking in performance. In addition to artists selected by a guest curator, a “wild card” performer or two appears in each line-up at The News. “Wild cards” are artists who may not have been selected by the guest curators, but join in the evening to share new work. Artists interested in performing as a “wild card” at The News can find more information here.
Caleb Feigin (The Lady Run Over By History) is a performance artist and community organizer from a small island off the east coast of Canada. Their art practice is about queer world-making, the transformative possibilities of collective trauma and the power of ritual and stories. Feigin’s work is frequently autobiographical and tries to directly confront and implicate the audience. When Caleb isn’t making art, she is doing community organizing to abolish prisons, end police brutality, and grow more gardens instead of more capitalism.
Frida Ibarra is a multimedia musician and multi-instrumentalist who brings queer and trans visibility to spaces she explores and creates. In her short time in San Francisco, she has written music for films which have been screened at the Frameline Film Fest, and has recently begun to perform with the OutLook Theater Project as a core ensemble member. Prior to relocating to the Bay Area, Ibarra has performed with many musical groups based in San Diego and has played in support of festival headliners such as The Killers, and Phoenix. After completing her undergraduate studies in Cultural Anthropology at San Diego State University with an unofficial emphasis in Ethnomusicology, Ibarra continues to explore the intersection of gender expression and musical performance, and how transgender musicians use music to express their identities in the greater Bay Area community. Her music can be described as anything from synth pop or shoegaze to electronic or post-laptop DIY. Frida is also a proud youth educator serving youth in grades K-8.
Xandra Ibarra is an Oakland based performance and video artist from the El Paso/Juarez border who performs and works under the alias of La Chica Boom. La Chica Boom is a performance art project that uses hyper-raciality/sexuality/gender as an experience-based mode of inquiry into relationship with coloniality, compulsory whiteness and Mexicanidad. She uses video, objects, photography and sex acts to evoke comedy and melancholic racial and sexual expectation. Her aim is to amplify gendered and racialized iconography and make such problematic constructions via spectacle more transparent to the spectator— what she calls “spictacles”— spectacles of degeneracy and power that are both against and engaged in the colonial gaze.
NCN is the stage name of a believer in collective liberation, hater of capitalism, and conductor of storytelling experiments for children and adults. Tigerlad, the baby donkey, and all NCN’s other characters (NCN personifies everything he sees) inhabit worlds where Newtonian physics and cause and effect logic have been replaced by desire, emotion, and SM fantasy.
seeley quest has curated Oakland artists for The News in November 2014. Sie co-organized the monthly Cabaret What!? for a year at the Oakland 40th St. Warehouse, organized and featured in the Love Your Neighbor Cabaret series around the East Bay almost quarterly from 2007–2012, and also organized and often MC’d the performers’ stage at the annual San Francisco Anarchist Cafe for several years. Sie has featured around the Bay Area since ’01, and on tour to many U.S. and Canadian cities and colleges. Often hoping to raise support for various causes, helping to facilitate opportunities for artists and audiences to connect is one of hir favorite things.
Jai Arun Ravine is a writer, dancer, video artist, and graphic designer based in Oakland, CA. They are the author of “แล้ว AND THEN ENTWINE: LESSON PLANS, POEMS, KNOTS,” and the director of the short film “TOM/TRANS/THAI.” Ravine is performing the solo “––a bit a tackle” choreographed by Qilo Matzen, a Bay Area dancer and improviser who has performed throughout North America and Europe. Creeks, bathrooms and black box theatres set the stage for Matzen’s immersive and somatically informed performances. jaiarunravine.com
Lyric Seal, whose piece involves a sound collaboration with Bed Death, is a black, mixed race, gender-weird femme with a heart of hardworking fiery creatures that crave water and attention. They have been dancing on NYC stages since age 8, choreographing since attending Hampshire College, and moved to the Bay full time in 2013 after becoming a San Francisco porn performer and interning with Sins Invalid. Lyric recently wrote a Bike Smut film, directed and co-edited by Nikki Silver, and co-starred in “Going Here” for queerporntv with Jiz Lee, to international acclaim. They have been published on modelviewculture.com, performed with Nomy Lamm and ET Russian, and toured with Mangos with Chili. You can find Lyric Seal and other bodies/words on crashpadseries.com, queerporntv.com, sapfromtheseal.tumblr.com, and on Twitter: @FancyLyric. To book for sound-making or move-making, email email@example.com. For love advice email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Pictured: Xandra Ibarra (La Chica Boom), photo by Jamie Thrower