ArtsEmerson, Boston's Emerson College program established to present theater works, independent and repertory films, music and workshops, continues The Next Thing (TNT) Festival, a 10-day mash up of all of these cultural activities, in the month of February.
This season Arts Emerson film programming centers around enhancing community arts and culture events and expanding the dialogue around what's on stage. On Saturday, February 9, for example, TNT festival brings the 2002 film "Far From Heaven" to the public. Directed by Todd Hayes, it explores the life of a 1950's housewife in abnormal circumstances. Also on Saturday, in "Swimming to Cambodia" directed by Jonathan Demme, actor Spalding Gray recounts his experience as an extra on the Sam Waterston film "The Killing Fields" filmed on location.
On February 24 "Spring Training" brings the acclaimed international musical/spoken word ensemble in ArtsEmerson to present a staged presentation of a work in progress.
Music is part of the ArtsEmerson February lineup, as Walter Sickert, winner of the Boston Phoenix Reader's Poll Best Artist 2011 and 2012 and founder/impresario of the SteamCRUNK band Walter Sikert & the Army of Broken Toys, will preview their new album The Soft Time Traveler. The Debate Society, a Brooklyn based company that creates new plays, brings "Blood Play" to the stage.
Daniel Fish, a New York artist working in theater, opera and film, will present "A (radicallly condensed and expanded) Supposedly Fun Thing 'll Never Do Again," based on three works by the late brilliant young Boston born writer David Foster Wallace.
Solo performer Mike Daisey brings "American Utopias" to the ArtsEmerson stage on February 15 and 16. The controversial monologist pursues the story of Disney World to Burning Man to Zuccotti Park where the Occupy movement was born. His unscripted monologues weave together autobioraphy and gonzo journalism, and his "The Agony and the Ecstasy of Steve Jobs" was critically acclaimed.
"Vision Disturbance" by Christina Masciotti, on February 20, 22 and 23, is directed by Richard Maxwell in his first project by a contemporary playwright other than himself, and is done by the New York City Players, a theater company founded to create original work about people, relationships and feelings. They have received four Obie Awards, a Guggenheim Fellowship and Foundation for Contemporary Arts Award.
ArtsEmerson was established by Emerson College, which is surrounded by Boston's Theater district, to make use of the restored Paramount Mainstage, the Jackie Liebergott Black Box Theatre and the historic Cutler Majestic Theatre in the heart of the Theatre District of Boston restored by Emerson in 2003.