A project that is ‘part art, part healing’ looking for young adult participants

Posted on 18 November 2014 by Mike Lyons


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A free storytelling project aimed at youth ages 18-21 is looking for participants interested in sharing their stories while learning skills in live performance, mixed media performance and improvisation.

Project organizers want to reach out to the LGBT community and young adults dealing with poverty, addiction and special needs.

“The general idea is to create a nurturing environment where all participants feel included and safe, as well as given the skills to share about the meaningful experiences in their lives,” according to a flyer for the project.

Project Arts will run the project, which begins on Jan. 7 at The Rotunda and runs every Wednesday evening from 5-8 p.m. for seven weeks, culminating in a live performance.

More information is available at the Project Arts website here. There will be 15 spots available and the deadline to apply is Dec. 15. Decisions will be made by Dec. 20.

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The Matter of Frank Schaefer, the story of defrocked minister, opens this week at Curio

Posted on 11 November 2014 by Mike Lyons

Frank Schaefer

Curio Theatre Company opens its 10th season this week with the world premiere of a performance that is, as they say, ripped straight from the headlines.

The Matter of Frank Schaefer tells the true story of the Methodist minister from Lebanon, Penna. who is defrocked for officiating his son’s gay wedding, refrocked on appeal and is currently threatened with another defrocking.

“What grabbed us right away with the story of Frank Schaefer is that it felt like a civil rights movement was starting right in front of us,” said Curio’s artistic director Paul Kuhn. “When we started this project gay marriage had not been legalized in Pennsylvania and Frank Schaefer had not yet been defrocked.”  Continue Reading

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Open bar, buffet, fortune tellers: Help support Curio Theatre at ‘The Carnival Macabre’

Posted on 16 October 2014 by Mike Lyons

4027323West Philly’s own professional theatre company, Curio Theatre, is throwing a party this Saturday to celebrate its 10th anniversary and raise money to help keep this important community resource going strong.

This year’s benefit, titled “The Carnival Macabre,” kicks off at 7 p.m. at the St. Francis DeSales Ballroom (917 S. 47th St.) and will include games of chance, fortune tellers, silent and live auctions and dancing. The Gold Standard Café will provide a buffet and there will be an open beer and wine bar along with a signature cocktail. Second Vision will supply the music.

Tickets are $50 and are available online here.

Speaking of Curio, the company recently announced the debut performance of the 2014-15 season: The Matter of Frank Schaefer, which will open Nov. 18 at 8 p.m. The performance takes on the story of the Methodist minister from Lebanon, Penna. who was defrocked after officiating at his son’s gay wedding.

“What grabbed us right away with the story of Frank Schaefer is that it felt like a civil rights movement was starting right in front of us,” said Curio Artistic Director Paul Kuhn.

That’s just a taste. We’ll have more information on The Matter of Frank Schaefer before the premiere. In the meantime, please do what you can to help support the amazing work at Curio.

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Halloween-themed events kick off this Tuesday at The Woodlands

Posted on 14 October 2014 by

FunnyBonesThis month, we’ll be publishing information about Halloween-themed events happening in the area. Here’s a roundup for the upcoming events at The Woodlands Cemetery and Mansion (40th and Woodland). Many of them are for the whole family. Please note that the first two events, dedicated to works of Edgar Allan Poe, will take place today (Tuesday, Oct 14).

Tuesday, Oct 14

Edgar Allan Poe: Funny Bones (kids are welcome)

4:30-6:30 p.m.

The Woodlands is a perfect setting for something mysterious and macabre, like a performance based on Edgar Allan Poe’s works. Literary historian and playwright Rob Velella, who specializes in 19th century American literature, will demonstrate some of Poe’s most loved stories. This event is especially great for kids. For more info and to buy tickets ($15 adults, $10 kids), click here.

Edgar Allan Poe: Master of the Macabre

7:30-9:30 p.m.

Velella, will continue his demonstration of some of Poe’s works, in this after-dark performance. After his performance, Velella will take you on a nighttime cemetery walk to visit Poe’s contemporary, Timothy Shay Arthur, at his eternal resting spot. This event is more suitable for adults and children ages 10+. For more info and tickets ($20), click hereContinue Reading

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Fringe Festival kicks off Friday; West Philly events guide (updated)

Posted on 03 September 2014 by


BalletX. (Photo via

Each year, the Fringe Festival brings socially-set performances and presentations by innovative artists to various city’s neighborhoods and venues. This year, the festival, presented by Fringe Arts, will take place Sept. 5 – 22 and will feature music, dance, theater, spoken word and circus performances, and visual art installations (some of them free).

Check out below the guide of the Fringe Festival events in West Philadelphia. West Philly venues for the festival include The Rotunda, The Porch at 30th Street Station, University of Pennsylvania, St. Francis de Sales Parish and more. You can also pick up the print version of the guide at the Green Line Cafe at 45th and Locust.

By the way, West Philly based circus-theater company Tangle Movement Arts will present their newest full-length show, Loop, at the festival. Loop premieres on Thursday, Sept 18 at 8 p.m., Friday, Sept 19 at 8 p.m., and Saturday, Sept 20 at 3 and 8 p.m. at Philadelphia Soundstage (1600 N. 5th St.). Tickets ($15-20) are now available via www.tangle-arts.comContinue Reading

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5 reasons you should go see Henry IV in Clark Park

Posted on 31 July 2014 by Mike Lyons

This year’s edition of Shakespeare in Clark Park debuted last night with a staging of Henry IV. Whether you are a Shakespeare or theater fan or not, here are five reasons you should get yourself down to the bowl (the remaining shows are on Thursday through Sunday, July 31-Aug 3, at 7 p.m.) :


5. Refreshments alfresco

Shakespeare in Clark Park always offers a good excuse to pack a picnic basket and a blanket or just grab an ice cream from the truck and chill to the sounds of Old English Early Modern English echoing through the bowl.



4. Music

In addition to the terrific acting, this one features some pretty sweet period choir-type tunes and instrumentation.



3. Terrific acting

These folks put on quite a show. For Free! (Although a donation at the end is much appreciated).

acting 1


2. Community

This may be the number one neighbor-watching event of the year. All kinds of folks dig Shakespeare in Clark Park.



1. The epic battle scene.

We doubted that the battle scene, which features about 100 people from 36 neighborhoods around the city and dramatically gets underway about an hour in, could live up to the hype. It does – and then some. Smoke, swords, screaming, battering rams, barricades … seriously, you have to see this.


Photos by West Philly Local.


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