|Penny Arcade, a produce of the Warhol Factory, brings her show to San Francisco this week.
The Queen of the Underground will be bringing her internationally touring show to The City this week. Performance artist Penny Arcade says she explores all aspects of unity and tolerance in Bitch! Dyke! Faghag! Whore! She calls it â€śrock and roll theatreâ€ť and â€śa blend of erotic dancing and political humanism.â€ť
She includes eight erotic dancers, both male and female.
Penny, a long-time performer and graduate of Andy Warholâ€™s Factory in New York, told me that erotic dancing is the â€śmost powerful feminist art form.â€ť She insists that sensationalism and art can co-exist in the same show. The neo-burlesque performance will be about separation of church and state, a â€ścomedic cultural criticism,â€ť topical comedy developed from improvisation, comparable to the style of comedienne Elaine May. Penny rocks without a band. Even the audience gets a dance break to recorded music.
â€śIâ€™m a working-class intellectual,â€ť she claims, and says she can â€śtalk about prostitution from first-hand experience.â€ť â€śNot for pseudo-hip people,â€ť is the way she describes the show, â€śjust like theatre but not boring.â€ť She sounds smart, funny and original over the phone. While she did claim to have â€śinvented solo performance art,â€ť she says the show is â€śabout the audience. Itâ€™s about all of us.â€ť â€śIâ€™m into the general public,â€ť She said, â€śThe public is underrated.â€ť
Penny tells us that she â€śgrew up in the underground in New York.â€ť This wild demoness bad-girl bitch climbed out of her bedroom window at age 13 to join the disenfranchised world of queers, junkies, whores, stars, stalkers, and geniuses. Since then, as creator of the seminal sexual politics performance spectacular, she has fearlessly displayed her singular brand of feminist sexuality and personal conflict, and has garnered countless fans worldwide with an emotionally and intellectually charged performance style. Arcade became a teenage superstar for Warhol with a featured role in the Morrissey/Warhol film Women in Revolt. She is a member of Feminists for Free Expression.
â€śI really believe thereâ€™s just one hatred,â€ť she told me, regarding the content of the remarkably titled performance. After having toured it to twenty-two cities, from Australia to Austria, she thinks she could run two years in SF. Even though it has what she calls a â€śdangerous vibe,â€ť she thinks it offers â€śa lot of bang for the buck.â€ť
Bitch! Dyke! Faghag! Whore! opens Feb. 26 (through March 7) at Brava Theater Center, 2789 24th Street, San Francisco. Tickets ($20 to $50) are available by phone at (415) 647-2822 and online at www.brava.org.