I had a great time at Wigstock. I performed in an amazing number, it was a beautiful day, I had lots of friends around me. But, I must say that as I milled about the backstage at Wigstock and looked out into the audience, I felt that there was a certain vitality missing. Not having been at a Wigstock before, I can't really know that anything was missing, but I could feel a gap where a power and strength and purpose once existed. NONETHELESS, I thought it was a great day and even more great that the event actually happened. If it is a revitalization and a resurgence that we are looking for, we won't find it or be able to create it if there is no medium for it. First we bring back Wigstock, then we collect and feature the new and existing Wiggies who have the voices of change we need. And, although I found myself thinking, "this is another example of how the East Village is not what it used to be," I must remind myself that progress often backtracks for years before it can go farther than it has gone before.
I do believe there is something to be done here, and I think HOWL was momentous in marking that. I don't believe that Howl was a museum tour through a relic of the East Village. I believe it was a forum for the new to meet the old-- and not in a boring, meeting-style discussion. It was a forum that happened in action, on the stage, on the screen, in the streets. I attended the final event of HOWL last night. It was a film screening that brought together veteran and amateur filmmakers, and asked that they describe what the East Village means to them in a 5 minute, digital video piece. The pieces ranged from documentary to fiction created by such filmmakers as Bill Morrisson, Alex Meilier, Roland Legiardi-Laura, Nick Zedd, Richard Sandler, Ilya Chaiken, Steve Buscemi, and others. Watching these contemporary images of what is still being felt in the Village made me realize that vitality still exists under these streets, but we are needing ways to tap it into our daily lives, into a community. Steve Buscemi's piece, "Luna Macaroona" about The Alien Comic and the Full Moon crew, was not a sad remembrance of what was; it was inspiration for what could be. Nick Zedd's episode of his "Electra Elf and Fluffer" series had Electra Elf bringing to life all of the little, multi-colored haired, toy trolls to run out all of the zombie-cloned tourists!! Ryan Kelly and I were just talking about how we are starting to see more and more living art on the streets: crazy art-o-mobiles being driven around town; loony, lady Midwestern transplants walking down the streets lifting her skirt and showing off her cooch to all the zombie tourists.
OK, maybe I'm just excited because I've never before performed in front of so many people as I did at Wigstock... WHAT A FUCKING RUSH!!!...,
OR, maybe I'm just naive...
...but I swear something is happening. Fluffernutter, I'll meet you on the street.
(and, thank you Sweetie for that experience. It was truly amazing!)