Not Her Again! AT 2018 FRINGE

September 14th 10 pm Writers & Books

Rochester, NY – Not Her Again! will perform at the 2018 KeyBank Rochester Fringe Festival (Wednesday, Sept. 12 – Saturday, Sept. 22) on September 14th at Writers & Books (740 University Ave, Rochester, NY 14607). Tickets are $20 at rochesterfringe.com, where more information is also available. Remaining tickets will be available at the door starting one hour before curtain.

For one night only the Fabulous Miranda Marie “Poison Waters” Sugarbaker returns for her drag and comedy extravaganza with some of her favorite comedians, Kevin Markman and Dan Maslyn. They will give you the gift or laughter with music and raw comedy on the first weekend of Fringe. Miranda Marie Sugarbaker is traveling back from her home down South for a One Night Only Show. She is a Brit that found her home in the Roc and is now a Southern Belle with a Northern attitude. She is a legend in the Upstate New York drag scene. Those who know her it is your chance to re-experience the sass and class. Those who have not come become a part of the unique experience for a night to remember.

More about Fringe: Since its debut in 2012, the KeyBank Rochester Fringe Festival has become one of the most successful fringe festivals in the U.S., attracting more than 78,000 attendees in 2017. Now an 11-day event, this multi-arts festival boasts over 500 performances and events – more than a quarter of which are free – in 25+ venues in downtown Rochester, NY. Celebrating and inspiring creativity, the Fringe – which is partially curated by the non-profit festival and partially by festival venues – includes everything from theatre, music, comedy and dance, to children’s entertainment, spoken word, visual arts, film, and much more. Please visit rochesterfringe.com for a complete schedule, tickets, and more information.

Jesus Was No Sissy at 2018 FRINGE: Performed by everyone’s favorite ex-nun genderqueer stand up comic

 

Rochester, New York –  Kelli Dunham’s JESUS WAS NO SISSY (or was He…) will have its world premier at the 2018 KeyBank Rochester Fringe Festival on Saturday September 15th  at 10 pm and Sunday September 16th at 3 pm at Writers & Books 740 University Avenue, Rochester, NY 14607.  Tickets are $10 at rochesterfringe.com, where more information is also available. Remaining tickets will be available at the door starting one hour before curtain.

 

JESUS WAS NO SISSY is a comic tale of what happens when a good Christian girl who might actually be a boy inside learns everything about masculinity and femininity through the wonders of The Lord’s Boot Camp (motto: Get Dirty for God, Go Lay a Brick), Christian finishing school (“From Grubby to Grace” for girls and “God’s Gentlemen” for boys) and a subscription to the Sugar Creek Gang series of Christian fiction.

 

JESUS WAS NO SISSY is written and performed by Kelli Dunham,  a Wisconsin-raised and Brooklyn-based genderqueer stand up comic, storyteller and author of seven books of humorous nonfiction.. Kelli has a long history of trying to get closer to God– as a teen missionary, a Bible College student and even a Roman Catholic nun with Mother Teresa’s order –most often with disastrous and hilarious results.

 

Dunham has been featured in the New York Times, Ms Magazine, Showtime, the Discovery Channel and nationwide at colleges, fundraisers and LGBT pride events. Kelli’s four comedy CDs including “I am NOT a 12 Year Old Boy” and “Why Is the Fat One Always Angry” are in regular rotation on the Sirius Satellite Radio’s Rawdog Station.

 

More about Fringe: Since its debut in 2012, the KeyBank Rochester Fringe Festival has become one of the most successful fringe festivals in the U.S., attracting more than 68,000 attendees in 2016. This 10-day, multi-arts festival now boasts over 500 performances and events – more than a quarter of which are free – in 25+ venues in downtown Rochester, NY. Celebrating and inspiring creativity, the Fringe – which is partially curated by the non-profit festival and partially by festival venues – includes everything from theatre, music, comedy and dance, to children’s entertainment, spoken word, visual arts, film and much more. Please visit rochesterfringe.com for a complete schedule, tickets and more information.

 

Media please note: High interest, high resolution photos available. Kelli is available for interviews and barn raisings.

 

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AUDIENCE AND PERFORMERS UNITE FOR ART LOBOTOMY AT 2018 FRINGE

Pittsburgh Femme Hosts Peer Behind The Curtain Of the Artistic Mind

Songwriter Liss Victory and comedian Liz Tripoli combine talents to invite audiences behind the curtain, through the fourth wall, and onto the stage with Art Lobotomy as part of the Keybank Rochester Fringe Festival. They welcome all people of all backgrounds to join the show at Writer’s & Books on Sept. 12 at 9 p.m., Sept. 13 at 9 p.m., and Sept. 15 at 8 p.m.

Every show is different. Each Art Lobotomy interactive performer showcase will feature three acts: Liss Victory, Liz Tripoli, and a selected Fringe performer guest. Each presents a piece of their art – a song, a joke, a dance, etc. After each performance, the audience becomes a part of the show by asking questions, proposing critiques, and offering their perspectives.

“We started an open mic in our living room,” says Victory, currently a Pittsburgh resident. “I’m a boisterous host, so I kept finding myself asking questions or playing the tambourine while folks were still in the stage area. Other attendees started doing the same. Then, we decided to start a whole event dedicated to workshop time with the audience.”

Tripoli, also from Pittsburgh, adds, “While it seems like a crazy idea to have random people tear apart your art, it’s been a completely positive experience. I’ve actually received some of my best notes by listening to how the audience perceives the work.”

After the living room went so well, Victory and Tripoli knew they needed to get their show on the road, on the big stage, and beyond their city’s limits. Art Lobotomy will be their very first Fringe Festival, as well as the opportunity to bring this adventure to a whole, new city and group of people. Performers and commenters alike leave the experience with new perspectives and ideas, feeling more enriched and fully entertained.

Please visit rochesterfringe.com for a complete schedule and more information. Any remaining tickets will be available at the door starting one hour before curtain.

DEAF COMEDIAN TO STAGE FIRST SOLO SHOW DURING KEYBANK ROCHESTER FRINGE FESTIVAL

ROCHESTER, NY — Have you ever heard of Tom Willard?  The Rochester-based standup comedian plans to put on his first one-man show during the upcoming KeyBank Rochester Fringe Festival.

“TOM WILLARD:  A Comedian You’ve Never Heard Of” will take place 7 pm Wednesday, Sept. 12, 2018 at Writers & Books, 740 University Ave. in Rochester’s Neighborhood of the Arts.  Tickets are $10 and available through the Fringe website (rochesterfringe.com).

Willard started doing standup comedy in July 2016 at the age of 58.  Having gone deaf slowly while growing up, he talks in his act but also uses sign language.

“I do that for three reasons,” he explained.  “To make my act accessible to deaf people, to give hearing people a chance to see sign language up close, and so I can understand what I say.”

He talks about deaf-related issues such as hearing aids and lipreading (“I don’t even know if you’re talking to me or chewing gum”) but also shares his thoughts on pot policy, Jehovah’s Witnesses and the cat who pees on his things (“It’s not a medical issue, he’s just an asshole”).

Willard grew up in Westfield, N.J. and began to lose his hearing at age 8.  He moved to Rochester in 1980 to attend Rochester Institute of Technology, home of the National Technical Institute for the Deaf.  With support from NTID’s interpreters and notetakers, Willard earned an RIT photo degree in 1985.

Upon graduation, he founded Deaf Artists of America, a nonprofit that he ran for 10 years.  Since then, he has worked as a journalist in the deaf community for more than 25 years.  He decided to transition into standup comedy two years ago, he said, because “Frankly, I’m burned out.”

He’s seen some early success, beating 15 other comedians in Photo City’s “Who’s Got Next?” contest in Feb. 2017, performing at Toronto’s Yuk Yuk’s Comedy Club and New York City’s Dangerfield’s and Broadway Comedy Club, and making it to the quarterfinals of this year’s Toronto Comedy Brawl.

This fall, he will try out for next season’s “America’s Got Talent.”  He is represented by the same Los Angeles casting producer who represented last year’s winner — Darci Lynne, the teenage ventriloquist who will bring her show to Rochester’s Auditorium Theatre in December.

Willard is also a longtime advocate who is encouraging the comedy world to become more inclusive of people with hearing loss.  In early August, he was successful in obtaining real-time captioning for comedy shows at the Lucille Ball Comedy Festival in Jamestown, N.Y.

He acknowledges that he faces long odds in his goal of becoming a successful touring standup comedian, but he is steadfastly optimistic.

“Plenty of comedians you’ve never heard of make a good living from comedy,” he said, “and so that’s my goal, to become one of those comedians you’ve never heard of.”

Writers & Books Celebrates Record-breaking Community Reads Program

For Immediate Release

Media Contact: Chris Fanning

Director of Communications

585-473-2590 ext 104

chrisf@wab.org

Rochester NY: Last Friday, March 30, Writers & Books wrapped up the eighteenth year of their annual community reading program, Rochester Reads. This year the organization hosted author Reyna Grande (author of the award-winning memoir The Distance Between Us) to Rochester for a three-day residency. Grande held readings of new work and led topical discussions at various libraries (Central, Penfield, Palmyra, Wood, Greece), college campuses (MCC, FLCC, RIT), high schools (SOTA), and a senior living center (Valley Manor). This year more than 1400 people attended these readings, a significant increase of almost 500 people over last year.

 

In her memoir, Reyna Grande shares the complex experiences of her life, from her childhood in Mexico, through her illegal immigration to the US in pursuit of a better life, to her success as a student and author. This inspirational coming-of-age story follows Reyna and her family as they cross the border and navigate the complexities of living as undocumented immigrants – with Reyna ultimately being the first in her family to earn a college degree.

 

Karen vanMeenan, coordinator of community reading programs at Writers & Books, spoke about the impact of picking Grande’s book:

“When I first read The Distance Between Us I, of course, recognized its value as a moving coming-of-age story and a beautifully crafted narrative. As I thought more about the recent conversations and the reignited controversies dividing people across our country, I knew this book was important—that if we selected it for Rochester Reads, it could spark crucial dialogue and bring people together. I knew it was the right book at the right time. And the response was indeed extraordinary. We had record crowds at every venue with audiences interested in the author’s experience, her family story, and the implications of continuing policies and rhetoric regarding undocumented people in this country. Reyna Grande captivated our audiences with her engaging presentations and presence, openly sharing her story and inspiring others to do so.”

 

Writers & Books is Rochester’s nationally renowned non-profit literary center located at 740 University Avenue, in the heart of Rochester’s Neighborhood of the Arts. In 2001, Writers & Books initiated the Rochester Reads program. The program seeks to encourage people to connect to others in our community through reading and discussion, and through the shared experience of literature. Each year Writers & Books selects one book for our community to explore together, leading to a residency by the author.

 

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