PCV director: The future of theater is on your smartphone

A woman rides the N train, along one of three routes where the site-specific plays are meant to be listened to on a smartphone. (Photo courtesy of Erin Mee)

By Sabina Mollot

A Peter Cooper Village resident who once directed a play designed to be downloaded as an app and listened to on the Staten Island ferry has recently released a series of plays that, like “Ferry Play,” is meant to be experienced on one’s smartphone.

The new production, “Subway Plays,” is a trilogy of plays that are intended to be listened to on the L, N and 7 trains. Though they can be played anytime, the audio performance should be accompanied by a specific route: either Manhattan to Brooklyn and Queens for act one, or Brooklyn or Queens while headed to Manhattan. The site-specific plays, which are told in English, also include other languages such Arabic, Hindi, Mandarin, Russian and Colombian Spanish that would typically be heard along the route.

The plays come in the form of an app, which costs $2.99 and can be downloaded on an iPhone or Android.

Erin Mee said she first got the idea to do a downloadable play from a Canadian theater company that specialized in what was referred to as “pod plays.” She ultimately decided to refer to her own project as a “smartphone play,” since iPods have mostly gone out of use and she didn’t want people to get confused. Additionally, she stressed that this type of play is different from an old-time radio play or an audio tour one might hear in a museum. This is because it’s site-specific with the sights, sounds and smells of the environment factoring into the story and overall experience.

Continue reading

Advertisements

Rivera focused on mom-and-pops and affordable housing at tech hub

Council Member Carlina Rivera outside her district office in the East Village (Photo by Maria Rocha-Buschel)

By Maria Rocha-Buschel

Newly-elected City Council Member Carlina Rivera spoke with members of the community media in a round-table discussion this week, covering affordable housing, the plight of small businesses and the transit woes affecting District 2.

Rivera, who took over the seat from Rosie Mendez, who was term-limited after 12 years in office, previously worked with Mendez as her legislative director and is a long-time community activist working in the East Village and the Lower East Side.

One of the subjects she brought up was the new “tech hub” the city is planning on East 14th Street, and Rivera said she wants to make sure affordable housing is factored into the plan.

“In terms of the zoning, it’s going to be important to look at how we can incentivize affordable housing,” she said. “People are worried that this tech hub is going to be a purely commercial development and one of the most important things we need is affordable housing.”

Continue reading

Police Watch: Man arrested for firing gun, Broomstick assault at W. 28th

SUSPECT ARRESTED FOR FIRING GUN IN FRONT OF STRAUS HOUSES
Police arrested 38-year-old Jamah Joseph for assault, weapons possession and reckless endangerment last Monday at 10 p.m. inside the 13th precinct. Police said that Joseph fired multiple shots at a group of people who were standing in front of 224 East 28th Street on January 18 at 10:25 p.m. with intent to cause serious injuries.

MAN CHARGED WITH ASSAULT WITH BROOMSTICK AT W. 28TH ST. STATION
Police arrested 22-year-old Adan Alverez for assault in front of 145 West 28th Street last Saturday at 7:18 a.m. Alverez and the victim got into an argument, during which Alverez allegedly pulled out a knife in a menacing way. The victim told police that he then chased Alverez to West 28th Street between Sixth and Seventh Avenues when Alverez allegedly picked up a broomstick and hit the victim on the left side of his head, causing bruising.
The victim was taken to Bellevue Hospital and told police that Alverez threw the knife, which he described as a silver blade approximately three inches in length with a white handle, into the tracks of the 28th Street station. Police searched the area but the knife was not recovered. Alverez was also charged with weapons possession, menacing and possession of marijuana. Police said that the two men did not know each other and did not have further information about what started the argument.

Continue reading

Hoylman to push for lower MTA fares and congestion pricing

State Senator Brad Hoylman (pictured at right) spoke about the need for transit improvements at a recent meeting of the Stuyvesant Town-Peter Cooper Village Tenants Association. (Photos by Sabina Mollot)

By Sabina Mollot

State Senator Brad Hoylman, who’s been an outspoken critic of the bus used by many of his constituents, the M23 a.k.a. the turtle, is now setting his sights on the MTA as a whole, saying he’s sick of seeing funds intended for mass transit get steered elsewhere.

Hoylman brought up the subject on Sunday, November 19 at a public meeting held by the Stuyvesant Town-Peter Cooper Village Tenants Association during a Q&A period.

The topic was first brought up by a woman who, during a Q&A period, said she didn’t like that a fleet of 200 diesel buses have been announced as a solution to the looming L-Pocalypse in 2019, rather than hybrid buses.

At this, Hoylman said he agreed and wanted to help “wean Albany off of Diesel,” despite the pollution-spewing option being cheaper.

Continue reading