Friday, December 05, 2008

Brooklyn at Eye Level: go see it

The story of Atlantic Yards is, as Bertha Lewis of ACORN (right; portrayed by Melanie Nicholls-King) says, "a great Brooklyn epic," and this weekend's performances of The Civilians' Brooklyn at Eye Level certainly convey that sense.

(Photos by Adrian Kinloch)

The show, put together at a whirlwind pace over the past five weeks, is hardly finished; rather, the performance at the Brooklyn Lyceum mixes monologues (from interviews), dance, and song, part of "a great big massive sprawling project with all sorts of moving pieces, and selections from each,” according to Civilians founder Steve Cosson. It's in the "investigation phase," and more polished work will be produced down the line.

For now, you can meet characters like Lewis, Daniel Goldstein (Develop Don't Destroy Brooklyn), Patti Hagan (Prospect Heights Action Coalition), James Caldwell (Brooklyn United for Innovative Local Development), Marty Markowitz (Brooklyn Borough President), and Letitia James (City Council Member), plus a whole bunch more unheralded folk who have things to say about a changing Brooklyn (if not exactly AY).

I'll wait until tomorrow to post more thoughtful reflections, but I'll remind readers that there are tickets (reservations; pay-what-you-can) for some of the shows this weekend, and it's well worth seeing, especially the closing number (right) when the power of the theater hits home.

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