Dear BSR Subscriber,
Welcome to the latest exclusive monthly tips for our subscribers!
It's time for our monthly BSR in the Wild update! The first Friday of every month we bring you our hottest tips on what's on our radar, through three sections: Find Us!, Neil's Nod of the Month, and Recommended Reading.
Find Us! is exclusive subscriber tips on which events and exhibitions our staff is heading to in the coming month. There's a lot happening, this month as always, and we love to provide these tips.
Neil's Nod of the Month is a look forward to the upcoming BSR story or review I'm most excited to read.
Finally, Recommended Reading is a quick, subscribers-only tip to contextualize the work we have coming up, placing upcoming articles in dialogue with past stories, because our arts and culture scene is an ongoing citywide conversation that you're a part of, too.
If you're enjoying this series, let us know! And don't forget, as a reader you can support our writers in multiple ways. Be sure to become a Local Media Champion. Send an article to a friend. Check out our latest Stories on Instagram. Are you caught up on our podcast? Feel free to email me with your own February picks!
Read on for February's inside scoops.
BSR executive director
The days are feeling longer a bit, and our calendars are filling up nicely. We've started 2024 with some very fine options on the scene. More is coming, for sure. As usual, you'll see some familiar names alongside new ones. We cover a wide range of experiences in our region. Read on, and be sure to tell us what you're seeing this month.
The Low Pass Ambient Open Mic
WHEN: Saturday, February 3, 2024, 6pm-9pm
WHERE: 1824 E. Passyunk Ave., Philadelphia
This event series has been popping up around South Philly. Synthesized music performed live feels unusual to me, and maybe it shouldn't! I enjoy listening to ambient music of many sorts and have been curious what an open mic sounds like with such performers.
Interact Theatre Company’s Step Mom, Step Mom, Step Mom
WHEN: February 4, 2024 (runs through February 18)
WHERE: The Drake, 1512 Spruce St., Philadelphia
WHY: World-premiere theater is always exciting. This show about a progressive interracial couple unexpectedly challenged by racial politics in their sex life seems provocative and timely. Especially as someone who’s in an interracial relationship myself, I’m interested to see what questions or discussions the show will raise. Look out for a review by BSR critic C.M. Crockford.
Philadelphia Theatre Company's Cost of Living
WHEN: February 7 (runs through February 18)
WHERE: The Suzanne Roberts Theatre, 480 S. Broad St., Philadelphia
WHY: After a world premiere, I’m going to take in a play that’s fresh from Broadway and a 2018 Pulitzer Prize winner. The show “traces two relationships: one between a wealthy graduate student living with cerebral palsy and his female caregiver, the other between a woman recovering from a terrible accident being tended to by her ex-husband.” Especially as someone living with disability, I’m fascinated by narratives about disability and social and economic burdens, so I’m looking forward to reviewing this one.
Valentine’s Dyke Dance
WHEN: Friday, February 9, 2024 7pm-10pm
WHERE: Summit Church Hall, 6757 Greene St., Philadelphia
Learn more below in our interview with Local Media Champion and organizer of the Dyke Dance, Linda Slodki.
FIND ALAINA & KYLE & MORE
WHEN: February 15, 2024
WHERE: TBA location in-person
WHY: If you've ever wanted to sit down with Alaina & Kyle and chat, here's your next chance! Friends of BSR and Local Media Champions will get the details in their inboxes by February 12. Become a Friend of BSR for $5 a month and you'll enjoy other benefits, both virtual and in-person, throughout 2024.
My Favorite Breakup’s Third Anniversary Party
WHEN: February 15, 2024, 7pm-9pm
WHERE: The Pen & Pencil Club, 1522 Latimer St., Philadelphia
WHY: Philly journalist Julie Zeglen started My Favorite Breakup, a micro-memoir newsletter, three years ago: each weekly issue is a brief 100 words about a breakup from anonymized writers. I'll be reading a few of my own entries at this party, alongside others who will reveal themselves.
With each month’s In the Wild, we tell you where our team is heading. This February, we have a special update from another important person in our community: Linda Slodki, who’s one of our inaugural Local Media Champions. She’s an organizer of the Valentine’s Dyke Dance, coming up on Friday, February 9 at 7pm at Mt. Airy’s Summit Church Hall. The event sounds fun, so we asked her to share more. Now you’ll be in the know, too.
What was the inspiration for the Dyke Dance, and who is organizing it?
The Philly Dyke/LGBTQ+ community of Mt. Airy continues to inspire and connect us intergenerationally. This is our launch of a series of LGBTQ+ dances in our own backyard: easy to get to, easy to park. Our committee of intersectional queers ranges in age from 32 to 78. We are artists and activists from the nonprofit world: Melissa Hamilton, Rabbi Lonnie Kleinman, Arleen Olshan, Sarabella Rocha, and Linda Slodki.
We believe in queer positivity—no room for racism, sexism, ageism, ableism, homophobia, or transphobia. Whatever the beat, we are about having a good time and looking out for each other.
Who is the Dyke Dance for?
The event is for the diverse and intergenerational Philly dyke community to come together on Valentine's weekend to share love and to keep us connected for growth and support.
This is a dyke+ space, meaning all who identify as dykes (18 years and up), are welcome. If you identify as a dyke, then you're a dyke, and you’re welcome to attend regardless of gender expression or identity, sex assigned at birth, sexual orientation, race, age, political affiliation, religious identity, ability, class, or immigration status. Dyke diversity is endless and welcome here.
We celebrate dykes in all their manifestations and also welcome folks who align themselves with dykes and are supportive and invested in our liberation.
What will happen at the event?
We’ll heat up the dance floor with DJ Sandy Stabler. Everyone can snack or catch a breath in the Gingko Lounge, surrounded by plants and art. There’ll be luscious treats and coffee from Night Kitchen, High Point, Malelani, and other local sponsors. More entertainment? You bet! Drag King Dr. Rasta Boi Punani and Drag Queen Rosey Hart will add to the heat! We’re topping it off with a raffle of gift cards, swag, and a signed copy of Pink Flamingos by John Waters.
Masks are optional, but highly encouraged, and will be provided at the event. Covid safety is community care!
Who is benefitting from the ticket sales?
After expenses, proceeds will benefit GALAEI, a Queer and Trans, Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (QTBIPOC) radical social justice organization.
Tickets are available on a sliding scale ($10-25). Advance purchase is recommended, but they’ll also be available at the door.
What are you most looking forward to about the event?
Seeing people’s spirits shine, celebrating together, and, pure and simple, sharing joy.
Get your tickets here!
Neil's nod of the month:
Kiran Pandey will review an upcoming production of R. Eric Thomas's play Mrs. Harrison. Montgomery Theater in Souderton has a run much of the month. I greatly enjoyed this play in 2018 when I saw it and think of it often. It touches on topics relevant to my life such as college reunions, shared stories, and automated bathroom devices. I eagerly anticipate Kiran's writeup!
Spreading the anguish
Representations of mental illness abound in media. But many fall flat. As our collective dialogue progresses, I sometimes look back at conversations from the past few years and consider what's changing behind closed doors and in public spaces. Alaina Johns wrote a year ago about a play at Philadelphia Theatre Company that presented concerning narratives about access to health care. What responsibility do creators and producers have to their audiences? What responsibility do creators and producers have to those who may not be in the audience but have their lived experiences represented, fictionalized or not? Alaina Johns is heading to a PTC show next week that also has disability themes, so look for a review that ties in with these themes soon.
Now that you've found us, fund us!
Stay in touch,
Neil & Alaina & Kyle
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