Getting off the 1 train at South Ferry station was nostalgic – feels like I haven’t been by Battery Park since an eventful Gareth Emery concert back in August of 2012. But I was back last night because I was invited to The Civilians Annual Spring Benefit, held at Battery Gardens Restaurant. Based at the tip of the park, the restaurant has a panoramic view of the New York Bay, where the Staten Island ferry regularly floated by and the Statue of Liberty was beautifully lit in the distance.
Green up-lighting surrounded the lighthouse designed event space, and all of the guests were settling into their seats for the show by the time I arrived. In the center of the space was a long table for the silent auction which had items ranging from coffee sets to museum tours, to a private reading by award-winning actress Kathleen Chalfant to tickets to the live American Idol show in LA.
The Civilians is an interesting theater company – their scripts are crafted by taking language from interviews they conduct. One particularly funny performance was in honor of Jeanhee Kim, the Founding Board President. There was an upbeat cabaret styled delivery that was both witty and engaging – and it was even more amusing because the content had come straight from Jeanhee, who’s pretty funny, mixed with artistic license given in the delivery.
Michael Friedman accompanied on piano and shared some pieces from “Pretty Filthy” – t’was very different, very graphic, and very funny. “A team of Civilians’ artists conducted interviews with performers, directors, agents, producers, and more in Las Vegas and the San Fernando Valley in Los Angeles… these interviews featur[e] several adult entertainment stars discussing the do’s, don’ts, and won’ts of shaping a career, how they got into the business, and more.” Some jokes went completely over my head… but I’m okay with that.
Complementary drinks were served all night, and I of course enjoyed the dessert bar =] - I had been craving chocolate covered strawberries recently! It was clear to me that this is a tight theater family, and I was happy to attend.
Looking forward to tonight’s Tech Meetup at Refinery29 – till then!
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