Penny Arcade: Longing Lasts Longer
Although it is her past associations with Andy Warhol –as acolyte and ‘Superstar’- friend of Quentin Crisp and her rise from the fringes of New York’s avant-garde to its hierarchy that have established Penny Arcade’s name, it is her name alone which stands in this show and it is her voice that must be heard.
Her ruminations on our society and the deterioration of culture within it are genuinely spot on and beyond observational; she really feels the decline and desensitization of our senses, probably because she was from the generation which first understood theirs and encouraged others to do the same.
The universal gentrification which has turned the world and its varying cultures into some sort of global shopping mall receive a fair bit of her ire but it doesn’t stop there and her diatribe although heavy and thought-provoking is always delivered in a manner that is humorous, non-didactic and hopeful that those listening will realise there is more beyond the media saturation we are all subsumed by on a daily basis.
Humorous insights into why so many of us charge into each other on the streets as opposed to New Yorkers, who seem to slalom along their pavements gliding away from collision elegantly, is because they have guns apparently so any confrontation is best avoided as it could lead to fatality. And she raises a fair and very valid point about the apparent number of murders in Midsomer.
Quirky but insightful, Arcade rampages her way through her show soundtracked by her long-time musical accompanist on the decks such landmark songs as the Velvet Underground’s ‘Heroin’ Prince’s ‘Purple Rain’ as well as potent and poignant choices by The Staple Singers, Nirvana and The Doors all of which deliver a dialogue of their own. Make no mistake however as this is very much Arcade’s show.
Only on for a limited run this year so it is best to get there over the next week if you don’t want to miss what is definitely a Fringe highlight with better and louder fireworks than those showing at the castle on a nightly basis!
Penny Arcade: Longing Lasts Longer is at Assembly Roxy at 18.55 until August 14th

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