Anonymous asked: Glad to see the gunk mystery nearing conclusion. Now, what about the fart aroma?

Honestly? It’s probably farts.

Or, like…concentrated farts. By which I mean sewer gasses backing up somewhere. so, the farts of a million million butts.


From The Desk Of

Mystery gunk

For those of you who visited - or worked in - the McKittrick Hotel from open to say, about a year ago, you’re probably very familiar with the mysterious black gunk. It would collect under your fingernails, but worse it would be in your nose for at least a day after. Super, super gross.

Recently I’ve had a few chances to dig around in a very old warehouse that hasn’t been used much since the mid-1950s. The building was built in the early 1900s and was at least two kinds of factories over the years. The upper floor was closed off around in the late 1950s and has sat, relatively untouched. It’s packed full of interesting things, but this is about the dust.

The first time I went there I did it without a mask. I blew black soot out of my head for two days. I can only imagine what went into my lungs. The next time I went, which was yesterday, I brought a mask, and I still had some of that old familiar mystery gunk. I think I now know why the McKittrick had it, and why it’s mostly gone now.

The upper floors of the buildings housing the McKittrick weren’t used much before Punchdrunk transformed them. A long time ago it was a place where they made things. Decades of dirt and grime and dust accumulated, and quite a lot of it was ground into the floors. Then came the nightclubs, and the dirt and dust they created floated upward and settled.

They we came along, stomping around on floorboards that hadn’t seen much use in a very long time. I don’t think it’s all graveyard dirt and artificial fog. We shook loose the accumulated grime of decades, old wood, spores, human skin cells, billions of dust mite carcasses, who knows what else. We beat those floors with our feet. We breathed in the decay. We took pieces of history, however small, home with us when we checked out.

We filtered the building.

About a year or so ago I noticed a marked improvement in air quality. Some of that was done by the people running the space, but I think a lot of it was the sheer number of human filtration systems that wandered through the space breathing in dust and breating out filtered air. If you go now, you still get grimy and there is fake dust to be found, and the graveyard will make your shoes grey, and you really don’t want to breathe the fog too often, but the true mystery gunk just doesn’t happen any more.

Anyway, I doubt anyone but me finds this interesting. Just thought I’d share.


bennicroft asked: I just attended my second SNM performance on Saturday the 9th at 7pm, I had my first 1:1 I can't figure out who the actor was or his role. It was toward the end of the show, he had a white (doctors coat?) on, and pulled me into a small bedroom that normally isn't open. Won't give all deets - but it ended with me laying in bed and there was writing on the wall... Something about Duncan... Please help if you can, I'm on vacation in Ny and am so obsessed I booked another showing on Friday!!

I answered this via email but I suppose it couldn’t hurt to do it publicly as well in case others run across this situation…

You met Nurse Christian Shaw, mostly played by women but in this case it sounds like you saw Austin Goodwin, so you saw one of the most talented dancers and performers that building has ever seen.

The words are from lines spoken by lady Macbeth in ‘Macbeth,’ which you should read like, immediately. Before your next trip to the hotel. You’ll be astounded at how much of the play is everywhere you look/smell/hear/touch/taste.


Anonymous asked: Very important breaking news: as of last week the caramels are back in Paisley Sweets

It’s days like this that make me believe in a higher power.

If we could get those ginger candies back too, I’d seriously consider pledging money to a cult of your choosing.


Anonymous asked: Have you experienced any Heath one on ones?

Glamis here, and I’ve had one Heath 1:1 and Cawdor has had two. They were all rather mind-blowing and wonderful, definitely worth the wait to get them.

Anonymous asked: Hi! I was just wondering if you knew of what scenes the actors will give you alcohol during? Last time I was there I was chosen for the speakeasy drinking game with the bartender and it was so cool and I was just wondering if there were more opportunities like this that you know of in the hotel. Thanks!

Glamis here, and the only place you will get served any kind of alcohol inside the show is in the Speakeasy. Hope this helps!

Anonymous asked: On my next visit, I thought I might try to follow Macduff for a cycle and then Malcolm. If I were to begin in the ballroom, is there an easy way to identify which is which? Since there are different actors going in and out, I sometimes get confused as to who's who at first glance.


Malcolm will be the one who, for the last part of the party dance, dances with the Boy Witch. If you were standing on the center of the star (don’t though, this is just to orient you!), looking at the dais with the table, they would be to your left.

Macduff is the one who enters with his pregnant wife, and then halfway through Sexy Witch steals him away.

Both are excellent but exhausting follows! Get ready to run. ;)


Anonymous asked: Hi. My friend and I plan on going for the first time in September. We are both 18. So adults but not of legal drinking age. Would this be a problem at the door? And are there nonalcoholic drinks available at the bar? Im sorry if you have already answered this. I can't seem to find a definitive answer online anywhere.

No problems at the door at all. You will be asked for ID then marked with a hand sign that indicates you are under age for booze. And there’s non-alcoholic stuff at the bar. Plus, all the bar staff can probably make you a non-alcoholic cocktail if you ask. No sure what, but they have a full bar. It’s definitely going to be fine!

Stupid 21 year old drinking age. You can vote and die in a war in the USA, but you can’t have a beer.


Anonymous asked: Sorry if you've already answered this question (you probably have)... What's your favourite 1:1? (sans spoilers :P)


It depends—-  It’s hard to separate the scripted 1-1 from the experience of it with different performers.  If I am going strictly by script and not by the experience, I would probably say The Porter.  The Porter’s 1-1, done well, is probably my all time favorite.

But a long list of different performers in various 1-1’s have all had striking impact on me.  Here are just a few that come to mind:

  • Isadora’s Lady Macduff the night I went around the anniversary of my Mom’s death.  Serious mommy issues that night.

  • The first time I had the Taxidermist 1-1 was clearly the most terrifying moment I have ever experienced in the hotel (thank you, Jeff Lyon), followed in close second by Stephanie Eaton’s Nurse Shaw 1-1.  (The taxi 1-1 is the one where only the very first time you experience it can it have the true impact, and Jeff pulled it off perfectly.)
  • The Hecate 1-1 after I found the ring was also pretty awesome, if only because it was the culmination of a long journey that involved months of fun cat-and-mouse with both Elizabeth and Careena as Hecate, and Careena as Matron.

  • Cat deAngelis’ Danvers/Campbell was brilliant.  Her eyes are so expressive.

  • Tori Sparks’ Agnes.

  • The time Conor picked me for the Boy Witch 1-1 and we both got the giggles because I was in full-on Fat lady drag at Carnival des Corbeaux.

  • William Popp’s Malcolm, coining the expression “getting Popped” because it is such a perfect description of that experience, on so many levels.

  • David Botana’s Fulton, David Botana’s Boy Witch, David Botana’s Taxidermist.

  • Tony’s Speakeasy

  • Will “Jesus-Christ-Will-Seefried” Seefried’s Porter

Glamis here, and I have to concur about the Taxidermist 1:1. The only real freak-out moment I have ever had at the McKittrick was during my first experience with that 1:1 with Joe Poulson’s Bargarran. When he brought out the goods I became genuinely afraid and, as it continued, I actually contemplated running from the room at one point. I was honestly scared half to death. Looking back, of course, I was being ridiculous, but it seemed pretty frightening at the time. ;)

Anonymous asked: Like many of us, I know most of the music that's heard in the show, but have never been able to place one piece. I don't know exactly how to describe it, but I think you'll know what I'm talking about ... it's a repetitive "tinkling" piece of music that is heard in the Macduffs' apartment when nobody's around. Does anyone know the piece I'm talking about?

I do know the piece you mean. It sounds like it’s being played on an old record player. I don’t know if anyone has ever been able to identify it. It might even be original, or possibly a heavily modified version of something.

But it does sound familiar. I always feel like I’m on the cusp of identifying it but I never can.

Anyone else have any thoughts?


The rue flowered just in time to be part of some Friday the 13th full moon magic. #witchesinthegarden #comeseeme

Getting ready for a full moon on a Friday the 13th in a garden. Probably in the rain.


New painting - “His Senseless Trial of Strength” - 11 x 14, watercolor on Gessobord

The title comes from a line in Ted Hughes’ “The Contender”

“There was this man and he was the strongest
Of the strong.
He gritted his teeth like a cliff.
Though his body was sweeling away like a torrent on a cliff
Smoking towards dark gorges
There he nailed himself with nails of nothing

All the women of the world could not move him
They came and their mouths deformed the stone
They came and their tears salted his nail-holes
Only adding to their embitterment
To his effort
He abandoned his grin to them his grimace
In his face-upwards body he lay face downwards
As a dead man adamant

His sandals could not move him they burst their thongs
And rotted from his fixture
All the men in the world could not move him
They wore at him with their shadows and little sounds
Their arguments were a relief
Like heather flowers
His belt could not endure the siege—it burst
And lay broken
He grinned
Little children came in chorus to move him
But he glanced at them out of his eye-corners
Over the edge of his grin
And they lost their courage for life

Oak forests came and went with the hawk’s wing
Mountains rose and fell
He lay crucified with all his strength
On the earth
Grinning towards the sun
Through the tiny holes of his eyes
And towards the moon
And towards the whole paraphernalia of the heavens
Through the seams of his face
With the strings of his lips
Grinning through his atoms and decay
Grinning into the black
Into the ringing nothing
Through the bones of his teeth

Sometimes with eyes closed

In his senseless trial of strength”

The original is not available as it is already in its new home, but you can buy prints here.

NYCC 2013-36NYCC 2013-37NYCC 2013-38NYCC 2013-39

Photos by LJinto

Zach McNally as a Splicer from NYCC 2013. Costume by Alexandra and Juli Abene.

But seriously, how frigging badass is this? Those girls are brilliant.


The McKittrick Hotel is looking for a few good men?

The McKittrick Hotel is looking for a few good men?


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