When visiting New York a common feeling tourists have is to be missing out on what’s REALLY going on in the city’s nightlife, besides the events and venues advertised on TimeOut and magazines or sites of the sorts.
Where do Newyorkers go on weekend nights? Here’s one of Brooklynites’ underground favorite spots.
One thing that will always characterize New York is the presence of many incredible spaces. Spaces to live, work, play, create and, often, all these things at once.
On Friday I went to a rather mysterious red building located in the Bushwick neighborhood of Brooklyn that looked pretty abandoned. On the 3rd floor there was an amazing loft split (or not that much so) between lodging and performance art space, featuring super high ceilings, a balcony running throughout the whole space, a stage and, I guess, much more I didn’t have the chance to see. The reason I went there was to see a show whose title intrigued me immediately: Narcissa Starving by New York-based aerial company Mad Sharpe Production.
I’ve been following the work of the show’s artistic director and producer (and aerialist and visual artist etc.) Seanna Sharpe for quite a while, so I was pretty sure I wouldn’t have been disappointed. Actually, I was delighted!
Narcissa Starving combines Ovid’s myth of Narcissus and modern psychology’s definition of narcissism: the young beautiful man who falls in love with the image of himself and the idea of transferring this selfish love to others, projecting on the other the image of our ideal love. In both cases it is image versus reality, abstraction versus acceptance and consciousness of the self. “Narcissa” is all of it female version.
The show was divided in several acts that expressed different aspects and stages of the ambiguous and contradictory nature of narcissism. Two ballerinas played the fight with the mirror: the struggle with what we see, what we’d like to be and, ultimately, the strive to break free from the image we created of ourselves.
Then a nocturnal Narcissa brought some flying magic on the rope, followed by a bright ensemble of white fairies flying on aerial silks, dancing and twirling in the air, mirroring one another, representing the pleasure and damnation of narcissism.
Solos and group performances alternated one another in a growing motion of aerial constructions until the last act, performed by Seanna Sharpe – the mastermind behind the show – who presented a masterpiece of cloud swing art, which definitely raised the adrenaline in the house. Amazing live music accompanied performances: violin, piano and percussions.
Why is Narcissa starving? As a “narcissa” myself, I believe she’s starving because she doesn’t find the food she’d like to feed herself with. Meaning, she doesn’t find herself beyond representations and she doesn’t find true love and the courage to love herself for what she is.
The show was a total, beautiful immersive experience of the inner world of Narcissus, a world that, at different levels, we all belong to.