Monday, March 18, 2013

Limited Tickets Available to Tonight's "Broadway Backwards"




(302 WEST 45

An extremely limited number of $20 rush tickets to this year's star-studded BROADWAY BACKWARDS will be released for sale at 6:30 PM Monday, March 18, 2013. The rush tickets will be sold in the lobby of the Palace Theater (1564 Broadway). They will not be available at the box office. Tickets will be sold on a first-come, first-served basis, cash only and are limited to two tickets per person. The show begins at 8 PM.

BROADWAY BACKWARDS is a one-night-only performance produced by Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS and benefiting BC/EFA and The Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual & Transgender Community Center of New York. Now in its eighth year, BROADWAY BACKWARDS is an annual celebration where gays and lesbians see their stories onstage, told through the great songs of musical theatre, sung by their favorite Broadway performers.

This year's star-studded line-up has been honored with five individual Tony Awards, 34 Tony nominations, seven Emmy Awards, 25 Emmy nominations and one Academy Award.

This year's performers include Ward Billeisen (Encores! It's A Bird...It's A Plane...It's Superman), Stephanie J. Block (The Mystery of Edwin Drood), John Bolton (A Christmas Story, The Musical), Jake Boyd (Rock of Ages), Mo Brady (The Addams Family), Daniel Breaker (Passing Strange), Jim Brochu (Zero Hour), Ashley Brown (Mary Poppins), Tituss Burgess (The Little Mermaid), Len Cariou (Sweeney Todd and TV's "Blue Bloods"), Robert Creighton (The Mystery of Edwin Drood), Victor Garber (Damn Yankees, Argo), Malcolm Gets (Amour), Anita Gillette (Chapter Two, TV's “30 Rock”), Judy Kaye (Nice Work If You Can Get It), Jose Llana (The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee), Kyle Dean Massey (Wicked), Jan Maxwell (Follies), Brian Stokes Mitchell, Stacey Oristano (TV's "Bunheads," “Friday Night Lights”), Estelle Parsons (Nice Work If You Can Get It), Eve Plumb, Doris Roberts, Tony Sheldon (Priscilla Queen of the Desert), Howie Michael Smith (Avenue Q), Anthony Warlow (Annie), Josh Young (Jesus Christ Superstar), Karen Ziemba (Curtains), comedian/writer Bruce Vilanch, former Paul Taylor Dance Company principal dancers Patrick Corbin and David Grenke, and teen poet sensation Noah St. John.

Advance tickets are sold out. A limited number of regularly priced orchestra, mezzanine and balcony tickets may be available the door.

BROADWAY BACKWARDS creator Robert Bartley will again direct and choreograph with music supervision by Mary-Mitchell Campbell and music direction by Tim Rosser. The creative team includes co-choreographer Amy Jones, additional music directors Laura Berquist, Mat Eisenstein, Brad Haak and James Sampliner, lighting designer Paul Miller, costume designer Ryan Moller and sound designer Lucas Indelicato.

The presenting sponsor of BROADWAY BACKWARDS is Lifetime Networks with generous support from The New York Times and United Airlines.

Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS is one of the nation’s leading industry-based, nonprofit AIDS fundraising and grant-making organizations. By drawing upon the talents, resources and generosity of the American theatre community, since 1988 BC/EFA has raised more than $225 million for essential services for people with AIDS and other critical illnesses across the United States.

Broadway Cares awards annual grants to more than 450 AIDS and family service organizations nationwide and is the major supporter of the social service programs at The Actors Fund, including the HIV/AIDS Initiative, the Phyllis Newman Women’s Health Initiative and the Al Hirschfeld Free Health Clinic.

For more information, please visit Broadway Cares online at, like us on Facebook at, follow us on Twitter at, watch us on YouTube at and pin us on Pinterest at

Established in 1983, the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual & Transgender Community Center is at the heart of the LGBT community in New York City, providing quality health and wellness programs in a welcoming space that fosters connections and celebrates our cultural contributions. We strive to serve the LGBT community with a full-service, multi-faceted approach to programming, from hosting arts and entertainment events, advocacy groups and family gatherings to offering youth, recovery and overall wellness programs. Each year, the Center welcomes more than 300,000 visits to our building in the West Village neighborhood of Manhattan from people who engage in our life-changing and life-saving activities. We are proud to be your community Center. To learn more about our work, please visit

Saturday, March 9, 2013

Album Release Party - What Time Is It, Mr. Fox?

What Time Is It, Mr. Fox? will perform at Dixon Place for a CD release musical circus will include boylseque, animation, trapeze, and videos all illustrating the lyrics and meanings behind the songs, with lead singer, 3rian King’s gender-defying voice scaling the walls between Antony Hegarty and Aretha Franklin.  What Time Is It, Mr. Fox? delivers the gospel on subjects from love and identity to sex and murder. Guest highlights include, boylesque from  Matt Knife and friends from Homo Erectus, aerial by Eileen Little (Fight or Flight), and "The Ladies' Tree" a new animated film by Award-winning filmmaker, Ruth Lingford, for the band's song about Joan of Arc.  The new CD “Little Bit Of Blue” co-produced with Tony Goddess (Papas Fritas) showcases the breadth of this ten-piece ensemble, which blends soul, R&B, and cabaret with baroque and medieval flair.  

What Time Is it, Mr. Fox? originally formed in 2005 as a trio with 3rian King on voice, guitar and piano; Nathan Cohen on violin and trumpet, and Mike Leggio (Walter Sickert & The Army Of Broken Toys) on upright bass.  The band quickly became a staple in Boston’s cabaret and burlesque scene, adding drummer Nate Greenslit (HUMANWINE), organist Lori Perkins (Seks Bomba), and five female back-up singers affectionately known as The Furies.  In 2008, New Orleans soul legend, Irma Thomas, covered their song “Cold Rain” on her Grammy-nominated CD, “Simply Grand,” with the track earning high praise from Rolling Stone, USA Today, and The Village Voice. Mr. Fox’s own version of “Cold Rain” is featured on the new album.  The act consistently sells out venues like Club Passim and Oberon in Cambridge MA and The Duplex in NYC, earning the Critic’s Pick in Time Out NYC.  Adam Feldman of Time Out NYC advises, “Catch him as his star rises,” while the Boston Herald declares that the “Time has come for Mr. Fox.”

What Time Is It, Mr. Fox? began recording the new album back 2011, starting with more than 25 songs.  In a concerted effort to retain the vitality of their concert performances, many of the instruments were recorded together live.  
A string section, children’s choir, accordionist, and singing saw player add the cinematic sense of drama and lushness to the album.

The title track “Little Bit Of Blue” opens with an a cappella version of the 18th century French nursery song “Au clair de la lune” sung by a children’s chorus, laying the unexpected foundation for a soul/R&B anthem in the tradition of “Stand By Me.”  Lead singer and songwriter, 3rian King explains this unlikely pairing was a natural process,

“’Au clair de la lune’ was the song used in the very first recording of the human voice.  The lyrics refer to Pierrot, the traditional sad clown.  He tries to win the hand of Columbine by offering her moonlight in his hand, but she rejects him for being a dreamer.  Something about that image struck me as being about genuine emotion and connection, so one day I quite spontaneously began singing these new words over the French melody in a soul blues style.  The resulting song is really about remembering that feeling vulnerable can be a good thing; it opens you up.”

The first single off the album is “Humpty Dumpty Girl” which is currently receiving radio play on Boston radio.  This track tells the tale of a woman who is losing her identity, constantly breaking into pieces that are reassembled into something unrecognizable.  It’s a commentary on celebrity, since the character in the song struggles to meet the expectations and desires of a scrutinizing public. 

The third track, “The Ladies’ Tree” sounds like a war song from the woods of medieval France, which is fitting since the lyrics are sung from the viewpoint of Joan of Arc awaiting execution.  According to historical records, the heroine was repeatedly questioned about a famous tree in her village which young girls used to dance around.  The song contrasts this innocent image with the hypocrisy and corruption surrounding her trial. The song has been turned into a short animated film by Ruth Lingford, professor of animation at Harvard University.

The complete track listing:
1.    Little Bit Of Blue
2.    Humpty Dumpty Girl
(single available at
3.    The Ladies’ Tree
4.    Deep Waters
5.    December
6.    Helium
7.    You Must Be Wrong For Me
8.    My Valhalla
9.    Paper Airplanes
10. Little Dead Rotting Wood
11. Peppermill
12. Cold Rain
13. Wrong Boy


3rian King – voice, piano, guitar
Nathan Cohen – violin, trumpet
Mike Leggio – upright bass
Nate Greenslit – drums
Lori Perkins – Hammond organ, piano

The Furies – background vocals
  Aura Valdes
  Elizabeth Bean
  Norah Solorzano
  Ruth Lingford
  Shana Cahill

WHEN: March 9, 2013 10pm
WHO: What Time Is It, Mr. Fox? With special guest, Chelsea Berry
WHERE: Dixon Place, 161 Chrystie St. NYC.
COST: All ages $12 for members, $10 students/seniors $15 at door.  

CD RELEASE: On March 19th, 2013 the album will be available for download on iTunes and and CD available for purchase at band concerts and on

For more information about What Time Is It, Mr. Fox?

Friday, March 1, 2013

Meet Boylesque Impresario Matt Knife of Homo Erectus

Over the past several months, I've been attending the wildly fun, and occasionally raunchy, Homo Erectus, a monthly boylesque show at the famous Stonewall Inn. Featuring a mostly, but not exclusively, male group of new and established burlesque performers, musicians, comedians and magicians, the eclectic event is one of my new favorites.

Photo by Kaz Senju
I spoke with Homo Erectus creator Matt Knife about his burlesque career and the genesis of Homo Erectus.

How did you first get involved in burlesque?

I started fan dancing after seeing "Memoirs of a Geisha." After that I got invited to do dances with Brian King's "What Time is it Mr. Fox?" show at the Duplex. A year after that I took Go-Go Harder's Boylesque 101 class and started going to shows. I was hooked to the people, performance and the glamour.

What was your first performance like?

It was my Boylesque 101 showcase. Harder was so supportive and the audience was all of our friends, so it was safe and comfortable. Honestly, it was one of the most thrilling, scary and liberating moments of my life. Matt Knife was born!

Has your family ever seen you perform, and if so, what was their reaction?

My family is very supportive of my creativity. They are creative people themselves. What they care for most is my happiness, burlesque makes me happy so they are happy for me. My mother is a very private person, so this is the opposite of anything she would ever want to do. Being gay herself she is thrilled the show is at Stonewall. and is looking forward to seeing what we come up with.

What has been your best burlesque experience so far?

The thing that I love about burlesque is the community is supportive and friendly, so most experiences are fun. I did love performing for Stephin Merritt during Homo Erectus's "Busby Berkeley Dreams". It felt great to be so inspired but someone else's art, and then show them what I am able to do with it. It was a dream show come to life.

If you could work with any burlesque artist, who would you choose?

I am luck since I have gotten to work with many excellent performers already. It is my goal to have as many boylesque performers as I can cycle through Homo Erectus. I also have a fantasy that RuPaul will have some boylesquers on the show to help with a challenge and contribute to the fun. Burlesque is part of drag.

Do you have a signature style to your performances or a particular move?

Not particularly. I try to keep my acts diverse and different from each other. The common themes are darkness, sex, humor and nudity. I do have a goal of creating a fan dance using every kind of fan you can. 

What would you say to someone who is on the fence about seeing a burlesque show?

To just come anyway. The only way you will know if you would like it or not is to come. Even if you never see another one, you can at least say you tried. I can promise people will see more talent than they would see on a reality TV show.

What would you say to someone who is contemplating trying burlesque themselves?

To give it a try. Talk to performers, see shows and take classes. Burlesque is excellent drama therapy. It makes you look at yourself differently, challenges your insecurities and rewards you consistently. Again, you will never know if you don't try.

Tell me a little about Homo Erectus.

Photo by Dick Mitchell
Homo Erectus started shortly after my Boylesque 101 showcase. My classmates and I were addicted to performing and wanted to continue. There was no monthly boylesque show, and I have two degrees in theater production. So I had the means to fill that void. I wanted to create a safe place for a performer to express themselves and for an audience to enjoy themselves. Homo Erectus is here to challenge the gay community to rethink it's labeling system and embrace those of us that do not fit into boxes. New York gays are pressured to be a certain "type" with little compromise extended if you are not the ideal. There are plenty of places to see perfect bodies in the city. At Homo Erectus we want to empower people who feel ugly, unwanted and left out to. Show that we are here to entertain them and there are others like them. What better place to take a stand than Stonewall?

What are the themes of some of the upcoming shows?

Well, we are planning an '80s Night, A Happy Birthday Homo Erectus Show featuring duets, Steampunk, Showgirls Parody, Halloween, Geeks and a Canadian Invasion. Many, many more!

Lightning Round

Boxers or briefs? Jock straps.

Glitter or sequins? Both are needed in my life, but to quote World Famous BOB "Glitter is the poor girls diamonds".

Oscars or Tonys? Oscars, but award shows are so silly these days.

Rock or country? Rock!

Brooklyn or Queens? Both are awesome! But I live in Brooklyn.

Thanks for joining me, Matt.  I can't wait to see this month's show, Homo Erectus: The Rites of Spring which will be held at the Stonewall Inn (53 Christopher Street) on Thursday, March 14th.  Tickets are $10, plus a two drink minimum.  Get there early because the show always draws a big crowd.

Matt Knife was born when Savlador Dali kissed Andy Warhol in Studio 54. That union created the pop surrealist Matt Knife. He is often found in Dark Haunted Theaters where another time meets the present. Sassy, classy and always dapper. Matt is also a professional costume designer, painter, make-up artist and the Producer of Homo Erectus, NYC's only monthly Boylesque show.