CHICAGO ( January 9, 2018 ) — The long running performance incubator Salonathon has announced that Monday, Feb. 12 will mark the final instance of its weekly appearance at Beauty Bar Chicago ( 1444 W. Chicago Ave ) in an epic 12-hour-long festival ( 12 p.m.-12 a.m. ) followed by the traditional dance party with resident DJs Danny LeRoy and All The Way Kay. See below for a full breakdown of schedule.
Salonathon is a home for underground, emerging and genre-defying art. Designed to be an engine for experimental work, an inclusive creative community, and a great party, Salonathon has manifested every Monday night at Beauty Bar since 2011, and it also takes place in the form of residencies, retreats, productions and parties. Since its inception, Salonathon has hosted thousands of performances and artists, and has nurtured the development of dozens of new projects and collaborations.
Founder & Artistic Director Jane Beachy posted this statement on the Salonathon Facebook page several weeks back:
"A few months ago, Salonathon held a strategic planning retreat. Besides going over the many, many logistics we needed to discuss, the core Salonathon team came together to remember who we are and why we do what we do; to check back in, truthfully and earnestly, about what we think we have to offer and how we can do that best. Among the core findings in our Strategic Planning Report: 'Salonathon accepts and revels in the fact that change is constant and ever-occurring.'
To run a weekly series is no small task. I say it not to toot Salonathon's horn, though when I think about what it has taken, toot I must. The time and energy and love and care and consideration and stress and uncertainty and hope that must fuel the engine of a perpetual machine are not minimal. When I think about what Salonathon has become over the past [6 years and 7 months], and where it started so long ago, I am amazed — amazed both at the sheer scope of what has transpired, and at how profoundly it has changed and affected what I think is possible in the world.
But Salonathon is not a machine, after all. It is not a structure built out of cogs and wheels. It consists of the hearts and heaves of humans, of movement and experimentation and love and belief. It has lived a long time in its current, weekly form — longer than we ever believed it would or could. It has meant more and held more than we ever dreamed possible.
The energy that has been so generously poured into our Monday nights over the years — by all of you who have attended, the thousands of you who have performed, and the dozens of you who have quite literally held it up is almost too staggering and too beautiful to behold. That love has made it healthy and strong and ready to move on. It is time for Salonathon to evolve and time for those of us who run it on top of full-time jobs to step back, regain perspective, and see what is next.
In the spirit of evolution, and with the deepest and most profound gratitude, Monday, February 12th, 2018 will mark the final weekly Salonathon at Beauty Bar. We have [a few more weeks] to pour ourselves into that space and then to leave it more glittering than ever before.
After February 12th, we plan to continue many of our other ventures — count on us for [Camp Salondawega] and for residencies and for other events and happenings… but we also want to regroup, listen, take stock, and be inspired. To be frank, we need to rest. We do so not in defeat but as before a big race… to shore up strength for what is next. For indeed, this type of art-making is not a sprint. It is a Salonathon."
Beginning Monday, July 18th, 2011, artists of all types began descending upon Beauty Bar every Monday for curated, thematic nights of ecstatic expression, performing dance, comedy, music, burlesque, projection art, puppetry, drag, poetry, and all manner of other acts too inherently original to describe. In addition to featuring approximately a dozen acts at each of its Monday installments, Salonathon has presented energy-packed events at and/or with the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago, University of Chicago ( both with the Chicago Performance Lab and Theater and Performance Studies ), Steppenwolf Theatre, the City of Chicago's Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events ( DCASE ), Alphawood Gallery, International Contemporary Ensemble ( ICE ), Metro Chicago, Empty Bottle, Thalia Hall, Punch House, Neo-Futurists, Rape Victims Advocates, Chicago House, Chicago Underground Film Festival, The Inconvenience, Logan Square Auditorium, Chicago Reader, Tall Ship Windy, Berlin Chicago, Printer's Ball, Columbia College Chicago, About Face Youth Theatre, and Camp Wandawega in Elkhorn, Wisconsin.
Jane Beachy conceived and founded Salonathon, with instrumental contributions from Kelly Kerwin during its first year, and has continued to curate and administer the overall series since 2011. The curatorial team has grown over the years, and now also includes Bindu Poroori ( since 2015 ), Joe Varisco ( since 2012 ) and Will Von Vogt ( since 2012 ). Salonathon Resident DJs are Danny LeRoy and DJ All The Way Kay ( emeritus resident DJs are Hijo Proodigo and Ariel Zetina ); Production Associate is Dee Nitz ( emeritus production work by Molly FitzMaurice and Maggie Vaughn ); Operations Manager is Corrie Besse. The documentation team over the years has been helmed by MB Stanton, Joe Varisco and Ishi Metkar. The Beauty Bar staff have been integral members of the Salonathon family as well, greeting regular guests by name and making newcomers feel happy and welcome.
Notable performers at Salonathon are too numerous to list, but early performers include rapper Big Dipper, queer "electro-fuck" collective BAATHHAUS, comedian Joel Kim Booster, live animation collective Manual Cinema, playwright Ike Holter, feminist dance collective The Fly Honeys, drag performer Shea Coulee, SNL cast member Alex Moffat, Brown Girls creators Fatimah Asghar and Samantha Bailey, musicians Sima Cunningham and Macie Stewart of Homme, and many, many more.
Link to Facebook Event: www.facebook.com/events/1863824833930137/ .
Link to Hi Res Photos: drive.google.com/open .
Link to Past Press:
Monday, February 12th: SALONATHON's FINAL MONDAY NIGHT AT BEAUTY BAR
@ Beauty Bar Chicago ( 1444 W. Chicago Ave )
FREE / 21+ ; Opening ceremony at 12pm
Salonathon started in the summer of 2011. Nearly seven years later, its iconic run at Beauty Bar on Monday nights is coming to a glorious close to make way for what is next. It's time to celebrate the past 340 weeks of emerging, underground and genre-defying art and community in true marathon style!
Join us between 12pm-12am to share in the festivities and enjoy a bounty of performances, with a 12pm opening ceremony, a performance workshop, a memory-sharing/forward-looking conversation with the curators, a dance party, and other special appearances and surprises. Bring your glorious mugs and strong looks - let's come together in these glittery halls one more time.
Schedule of Day
Opening Ceremony / Provocation
First-Timer/Last-Timer Salonathon Performers Workshop
Panel / Coffee Talk / Open Convo w/ Salonathon Team
Bindu Poroori Curates
Jane Beachy Curates
Joe Varisco Curates
Workshop Results + Performances by First-Timers & Last-Timers
Will Von Vogt Curates
Kelly Kerwin Curates
Food Truck / Dinner / Screenings
For more information on Salonathon, visit www.salonathon.org .
For information on other events, residencies and retreats, visit www.salonathon.org/beyond-beauty-bar/ .