Tuesday, December 27, 2011

DEC 2011/JAN 2012: Alethea Black & David Gates; Groucho Marx Radio; By the Hand of Horace; R.I.P. RAC Bash; R.I.P. RAC Bash #2; American Teacher

8 PM, Thurs. Dec 29

ALETHEA BLACK was born in Boston and graduated from Harvard College in 1991. Her father was a mathematician, and for a long time she believed her name, the Greek word for truth, was his way of tipping his cap to the idea of absolutes. Then one day her mother overheard her and said, “No, we got your name from a TV show.”Black's debut collection of short stories, I Knew You'd Be Lovely , was chosen as a Barnes & Noble Discover Great New Writers pick and was an Oprah.com Book of the Week. Brimming with humor, irony, and insights about the unpredictable nature of life, the unbearable beauty of fate, and the power that one moment, or one decision, can have to transform us, I Knew You'd Be Lovely delivers that rare thing—stories with both an edge and a heart.

is the author of two novels, Jernigan, a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize, and Preston Falls, a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award, and a collection of stories, The Wonders of the Invisible World, also a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award. A staff writer for Newsweek, his stories have appeared in Esquire, GQ, Grand Street, Ploughshares, TriQuarterly, The Best American Short Stories, The O. Henry Prize Stories anthology, and elsewhere. His reviews have frequently appeared on the front page of the New York Times Book Review.FREE! Comp wine. Books on sale at event.

Raconteur Radio Presents
8:00 PM, Fri. Jan 6; 7:30 & 9:00 PM, Sat. Jan 7
Featuring acclaimed Groucho impersonator Ron MacCloskey (in full costume & makeup) and Welcome Back Kotter's Bobby Hegyes (Epstein) as Chico Marx!

Flywheel, Shyster, and Flywheel was the Marx Brothers radio debut. It first aired in 1932 and was written by the same writers who wrote some of their funniest film bits. Our production features short comedic skits broken up by several period songs sung live, including the notorious Groucho hit, "Lydia, the Tattooed Lady." Also with Michael Jarmus and Francesca Tedeschi. $10 (payable at the door). Theatrical lighting! Costumes! Sound effects! Raconteur Radio productions are staged performances of famous radio plays for live audiences. To find out how you can book Raconteur Radio at your library, school, or cultural venue, click HERE.

8 PM, Fri. Jan 13
Reading/Live Music/Mixed Media

A lonely ten year old boy confronts a violent grandfather as the extravagant hand shadows he casts onto the bare, blonde planks of his bedroom wall come to grotesque and explosive life. W/a live soundtrack by folk guitarist Bruce Donnola and a slide show of haunting b/w woodcut illustrations by artist Janice Fried.

8 PM, Sat. Jan 14
Featuring The Roadside Graves, Francesca Tedeschi, and Lev Grossman
Join us in remembering, celebrating, and memorializing our almost bygone bookstore as Raconteur house band The Roadside Graves sings alt country folk songs from their Hinton inspired new album (think The Outsiders by way of the Bad Seeds); international fashion model Francesca Tedeschi strums and hums gorgeous originals (think Carla Bruni) and sings heart wrenching covers of Leonard Cohen; and Time Magazine senior writer, Lev Grossman, author of the New York Time bestseller The Magicians (think Harry Potter for adults), reads from its acclaimed sequel, The Magician King (recently featured on The Simpsons).

8 PM, Sat. Jan 21
Shayfer James, Honor Amongst Thieves, FenFell, and Laurence Mintz
Join us again in remembering, celebrating, and memorializing our almost bygone bookstore as Shay Jay tickles his tusks while logging saws sing; the H.A.T. sideshow eats fire, swallows swords, and escapes from a glass box filled with water; FenFell conducts its junkyard orchestra, and my man Mintz exhibits fifteen factory scapes, a dozen rail yards, and ten nekkid ladies, all done in the deep shadowy shades of Mr. Eddie Hopper.


The Raconteur, The Forum Theatre, and The Metuchen Arts Council Presents
8 PM, January 28

$15; The Forum Theatre, 314 Main Street, Metuchen, NJ
Oscar winning filmmaker Vanessa Roth screens and discusses her powerful new documentary, American Teacher, a heartbreaking study of what it's like to teach in America today. Co-produced by Dave Eggers and Nínive Calegari and narrated by Matt Damon, American Teacher is, according to the Washington Post, "a film about education that gets it exactly right," raising what Secretary of Education Arne Duncan calls, "important questions about American teachers," and sparking "a much needed conversation."

"Every policymaker should be required to see the new film American Teacher. Powerful, compelling!" Washington Post; "As we watch the individuals in American Teacher struggle with the burdens the system places on them, it's hard not to feel like crying, both for them specifically and for our national culture." Los Angeles Times; "This heartbreaking and essential look into the lives of those who put so much into educating other people's children ought to be seen by anyone concerned about the fate of the public school system, and the nation as a whole." New York Daily News; "Terrific, uplifting and heartbreaking study of what it’s like to teach in America today should inspire intense admiration and even more intense anger over what is revealed." Film Journal; "Sobering, Powerful!" The Village Voice. Click HERE for trailer.