It was a special event for New Year’s Eve 2013 at Sleep No More. A (big!) party with the theme of a royal hunt. Hell of a lot of fun.
This has to be some sort of sign. After I posted this morning, I had to take my mother-in-law to pick up her car from the shop. She got it and we parted ways. Whereupon I got on the highway - still half in a daze from the whole 3 hours of sleep I got - and started driving to New York City, the opposite direction from where I live.
I got about 28 miles down the road when I realized what I was doing. I’m tired as hell, hung over, foggy, it was raining, and all I thought was “gotta get home, gotta get home, gotta get home.” At which point my brain put me on autopilot to the McKittrick Hotel.
I feel like Roy Neary. “This means something.” ;)
James Graber’s Cunning Man last night. CREEP-TASTIC. Julia Campanelli’s Hecate was, from top to bottom, the most heartbreaking and tragic portrayal of that woman in red.
Many other fun and beautiful things happened, like DrunkLily and Ryan “Fuck it I’m’a wash my whole hair in this bucket“‘s BaldBlonde. And interrogation again, with Jonothan and Patrick. Whoever devised that piece should die proud and happy. It’s perfect.
Spent a crap-ton of time watching light & dark, like it was a living character.
The tiny moment that stands out to me, that sort of made the night: Jeff’s souse-y Speakeasy comes into the taxidermy shop and tosses the bird at Joe’s Bargarran from across the room. It lands with a thud on the counter. Joe is startled and looks up with anger to see who disturbed his furious polising of a very important bone. Speakeasy just stood there like “And? What?” Whereupon Bargarran violently vaults the counter in one hop and starts chasing him out into the hall. He stopped at the door, stalked back to the counter and tried to regain his sense of composure, but he was just pissed. And that anger carried over into a little gumdrop session.
I missed Serious Business Joe Bargarran. I didn’t know how much until last night. That was really great.
Amazing conversations post-show. Love you people. Lulu & Esmerelda, thanks for getting me liquored up. :)
See you all soon. Ne’er shall we bade farewell.
Will’s Porter destroyed me last Sunday night. The two huge handfuls of Boy Witch ass he grabbed almost made me crack up in the middle of the duet. WHY DOES HE SMELL SO GOOD? Why? That was so, so intense. I’m not sure anyone has ever been that intense in that room with me before. And why does he smell so good?
Chelsea’s BlondeBald blew my mind…again. Isadora’s Lady Mack was off the charts, as was Joe’s Macbeth. Emily’s Danvers was, as per usual, *the* standard for Danverses. Zach Goddamned McNally was on fire. Zhauna was killing it in the Rep Bar. Austin was his usual ridiculously good self. Miguel was absolutely amazing. I didn’t make it to five with Nurses or Matrons, but I hear there was some fantastic stuff happening up there. James-James was great in the elevator and in the Taxidermy shop. Like, creepy, aggro-weird in such a good way. Botana was playing with everyone in the Speakeasy and actually got legit laughs. :)
Shots, milagros, rings, a face full of lipstick, a ride in a rickety old chair (Hey Orderly, why you smell so good too? Damn fellas, help a brotha out and tell me what that scent is!), Evelyn flirting with me all night, drinks, Esmeralda & Sergei taking care of me in the bar (by which I mean inebriating me!)…
Wait, why am I trying to pitch this to anyone?
Yeah. You know what? You’re all right after all. The show sucks now. You shouldn’t come. Nope. Nothing to see here, people. You shouldn’t even bother. I’ll just go for you. Cool? Cool.
Awww, Ching-I Chang’s last night tonight.
She was my absolute favorite dancer in that show….
So glad I got to spend so much time watching her last night. I tried to stay out of the way of a few people I saw who were truly dedicated to staying with her. What I did was figure out ways to be around for all the big key Sexy moments over three loops. So beautiful. Thank you for the kiss, Ching-I!
How about we have badges made:
”I Saw the Far Superior Boston Production.”
“I Saw the Far Superior 2011 Original NY Cast and YOU DIDN’T!”
“This is such hipster bullshit.”
“Commercial = Irrelevant”
Everyone who wants to make sure that we all know that THEY were there for the beginning or how passé it is can wear one. Then they won’t need to proclaim it so loudly online any more.
I’m sad for the people who don’t enjoy it any more. But, wouldjacommon?!
I was gonna do this whole response to this morning’s Anon, but you know what? This post is better than any answer I could craft. Sorry Anon. I decided not to take the bait. Here’s your sign.
Cawdor here. This was sent with the request that the submitter not be named. It’s so perfectly worded and so right that I’m more than happy to post it.
I’d like to weigh in on this ‘SNM end date’ ‘was the original cast better’ question, to say this: Do you remember the magic you felt when you saw Sleep No More for the first time? How it took you in, how it affected you? Do you remember the first performer who looked you in the eye or pulled you into a locked room and got inside your mind without even trying? Every night, there are new people having that first experience. There are new people who walk out with stars in their eyes, with no idea what happened to them, and an irresistible desire to go again. And again. And again.
This show is not just meant to serve the loyal fans who have been with it from the beginning. It is also meant for those people still being pulled into it’s magic, and for the record? Most first timers who walk out of there DO think the end date is firm. They see ‘September 7th’ and they think, ‘Oh god, I must tell everyone I know RIGHT NOW’, and so it sells out every night. If Sleep No More can keep running and can keep giving people that magical first experience, let it. It’s inspiring and valuable, and it’s value doesn’t lessen at all by sticking around. If anything, I think it’s extraordinary that it’s gotten to reach as many people as it has -
…and wanting it to end sooner just so you can have the thrill of a last show and feel like you are part of something rare (which you are anyway - this won’t last forever) - is selfish. You’d be robbing other people of their experience.
Sleep No More has also turned into something much bigger than itself. The McKittrick staffs huge amounts of people, pulls in a ton of talent, and a ton of enthusiastic fans. It’s become a self-sustaining creative community, and one that I wouldn’t trade for the world.
In regards to the cast, it’s natural to be biased to the first people you saw. But that doesn’t lessen the value of the current company. They are dedicated, they are talented, they are learning and growing, their experience changes every night just like yours does.
Just because this has run for as long as it has doesn’t mean it will run forever. It won’t. Regardless of how long it continues, you are still a part of something unique. Don’t wish it away sooner than it has to go, because you won’t be able to get it back. Don’t take it for granted.
Because man, person asking this question - I wish you’d had my night at Green Man/Sleep No More last Friday. If you’d seen the show I saw, had the night I had, and wandered the city til the sun rose hand in hand with beautiful friends appreciating the fleeting magic of what you all get to be a part of - you wouldn’t be asking these questions.
Perfect. This has the added feature of making me HIGHLY regret skipping Green Man even more, which I already did after hearing about, and reading and talking to everyone who went.
The idea that Punchdrunk likes really ephemeral things is valid, of course. And SNM is uncharted territory. But in a few years, it will be gone. Forever. The space will be reconfigured or possibly leased by someone else altogether, and SNM will likely never, ever exist again. And we will still know we were a tiny part of something unique, something beautiful, something that can, has and continues to touch the very soul of some who pass through those bloodied halls.
I will never regret my time there, and I will think on it as ephemeral when it it over, whenever that may come. That building, those people…they have, and continue to inspire me on a regular basis.
I’m not done with the hotel, and the hotel isn’t done with me. And we both know it.
1. No, and to elaborate, I think if you believe that, you simply aren’t paying attention. You’re answering out of emotional attachment to the cast you fell in love with, not because you’re observing the work being done today. Or you’re just that kind of asshole who feels the need to shit on good things in order to make yourself feel better.
2. There’s more layers to this onion than any of us have discussed, even after all this time picking the show apart. Again, that feels like a criticism born out of a need to tear others down. Tall poppy syndrome and all that. It also seems to be born out of a misunderstanding of what the fan community has collectively been doing since it sprang up on the tumblrs. None of this has been anything other than piecing together the various stories and sources, and understanding the moments of connection that are made. I fail to see how that is worthy of mockery or disdain.
3. Sleep No More already has an end date. It’s every day. You can choose to stop going any time you wish. No one forces you to buy tickets. To go, especially regularly, and then complain that it still exists? That’s so many levels of idiotic. If it’s terrible now and no one is any good and the show is just a big money grab, just stop buying tickets, and the show is done for you. You can make that choice each and every day.
It’s fine if you believe it should end. That’s a very valid position to hold. Every time you walk through those doors, though, your argument carries less and less weight as truth, and more and more weight as simply shitting on a thing that other people like.
My $0.02. YMMV.
YES! And all the faces she makes as soon as she downs those shots, then starts debating the drugged milk, then her little giggles while fingertrumpeting…it’s all so perfect.
That sounds awesome. I might try that very soon. -C