A Proposition by Young Jean Lee: A Collaboration with the Audience
November 12 – 13 2010
For “Propositions” – the New Museum’s monthly forum for public research that explores ideas in development – Young Jean Lee brought the audience into her creative process as she explored the issues and themes in her then work in progress, UNTITLED FEMINIST MULTIMEDIA TECHNOLOGY SHOW (UFMTS). She described the inception and progress of UFMTS and guided a collaborative conversation, engaging the audience in the same style of brainstorming and discussion she used with the actors of Young Jean Lee’s Theater Company. The performance artist Justin Bond joined Lee on November 13 for a conversation about Lee’s work-in-progress. Young Jean Lee’s Residency was also part of the New Museum’s RE:NEW RE:PLAY Performance Residency Series.
In UFMTS, Young Jean Lee uses her hilariously disorienting approach to attack the subject of gender politics and sexism. The show follows the adventures of a butch farm girl who gets transported to a magical fairyland and encounters fairy princesses and singing mermaids who overturn everything she knows about masculinity and femininity. The show’s assault of text, video, sound, music, and dance will seduce with subversive images of women, intensifying and proliferating a sense of female beauty and power that goes beyond the limited options we’ve all been trained to desire.
Young Jean Lee has been called “a rising star” by the New York Times and “one of the best experimental playwrights in America” by Time Out New York. She has written and directed seven plays in New York and toured with her work to over twenty cities around the world. She is currently under commission from Plan B/Paramount Pictures, Lincoln Center Theater, Playwrights Horizons, and the Oregon Shakespeare Festival. Her plays have been published in Three Plays by Young Jean Lee (Samuel French), Songs of the Dragons Flying to Heaven and Other Plays (TCG), and THE SHIPMENT/LEAR (TCG). She is the artistic director of Young Jean Lee’s Theater Company and is a recipient of an OBIE Award and an Academy Award from the American Academy of Arts and Letters.
Recently described as “A bar of gold in the new depression” by Hilton Als in the New Yorker, singer, songwriter and Tony-nominated performance artist Justin Bond is an Obie, Bessie and Ethyl Eichelberger Award winner and was named one of the top 40 favorite New Yorkers by Time Out New York and was listed by Time Out London as one of England’s 50 Funniest People. His debut EP Pink Slip was released in July 2009. In 2008 he won rave reviews for his GLAAD nominated show Lustre which premiered at PS122 in the East Village and then went on to tour the UK with stops in Manchester, England as part of the It’s Queer Up North Arts Festival and in a critically acclaimed run at London’s Soho Theatre. Also in 2008 Justin appeared at The Southbank Center in London in the title role of Sinderella an original musical written by Martyn Jacques of The Tiger Lillies. In 2007 he premiered Justin Bond is Close To You, a reinterpretation of the classic Carpenter’s album Close To You performed in its entirety in Central Park and subsequently presented by The Sydney Opera House in Australia. In 2005 his show Glamour Damage had its world premiere at London’s Soho Theatre and was hailed by the Evening Standard as “A glittering walk on the wild side.” He regularly Emcees the performance series Weimar New York which has played in such varied locations as the SFMOMA, The Speigeltent, and Joe’s Pub at the Public Theater in New York. As a featured vocalist on the London Readers Wifes’ single Nostalgia, he had a top 20 hit on the UK alternative chart. Bond also toured internationally with avant-garde noise/cabaret band Pantychrist. A Cable Car award winning journalist, Bond was also nominated for a Bay Area Critics Circle Award for his solo work Dixie McCall’s Patterns for Living. As one-half of the performance duo Kiki and Herb, Justin has toured the world headlining at Carnegie Hall, The Sydney Opera House, London’s Queen Elizabeth Hall and starred in successful runs On Broadway (The Helen Hayes Theatre) and Off- (The Cherry Lane Theatre). Film credits include a starring role in John Cameron Mitchell’s feature Shortbus, Charles Hermann-Wurmfeld’s Fancy’s Persuasion as well as Imaginary Heroes and Jon Moritsugu’s Mod Fuck Explosion. Most recently, Bond wrote, directed, and starred in Re:Galli Blonde (A Sissy Fix) at The Kitchen. Justin credits his career as a queer performer to Kate Bornstein who cast him as Herculine Barbin in her ground-breaking play Hidden: A Gender in 1991.