The Faghag and Her Friends in the City of Love
Various (Video Cast), November 2018
By Penny Arcade
The Faghag and Her Friends in The Summer fo Love, aka Old Queen, was developed improvisationally in front of live audiences at Dixon Place, Joe's Pub at The Public Theatre, Pangea Restuarant in New York, the Afterflow Festival in Provincetown and as part of a ten day residency at The Orchard Project in Saratoga Springs, New York.
The Faghag & Her Friends in The Summer of Love is the latest offering from veteran playwright/performer Penny Arcade, at the peak of her powers. It features Arcade's spot-on impersonations and intoxicating improvisational style, “stiletto wit…blistering” – The New York Times.
With longtime collaborator Steve Zehentner, they move into new territory, embedding Penny’s take-no-prisoners narrative into a filmic landscape that traverses 1967 Provincetown to Andy Warhol’s Factory and the cafes and nightclubs of New York City’s celebrated demimonde, where tragedy and transformation walked hand in hand and created a breeding ground for revolutionary thinking and artistic innovation. It's an intoxicating combination you won't want to miss!
The Faghag and Her Friends…, blends personal memoir and oral histories from the elders of the queer underground into an evocative aural & cinematic experience that evokes the magic and memory of the gay men who raised her and took young Penny from performing on the mean streets of 1960’s New York City to the stages of The Playhouse of the Ridiculous and the Warhol Factory.
"When I was 14, 15, 16... my goal every night was to sit at the table with the old queens. A difficult invitation to get for a teenage girl when the word faghag was only a pejorative, only a put down. But the old queens recognized my curiosity, my wit, my acceptance of their superiority to me. The old queens knew everything I wanted to know and for them conversation was more than an art, it was the existential nectar that gave form to the power of the word. The old queens knew everything about history, about precedence, about the human condition. They did not tolerate banality nor mediocrity and theirs was a fierce and unapologetic intelligence and wit. Just sitting at a table of old queens in a dark bar or fluorescent coffee shop, lifted your IQ twenty points!” – Penny Arcade