The East Village Community Unwellness Center
From April 22 to May 7, Qubit will transform a former Santander Bank branch at 172 East 4th Street into The East Village Community Unwellness Center. The Unwellness Center will examine the interstices of the supposedly restorative qualities of contemporary health and wellness trends with the destructive forces of corporate capitalism, digital dystopia, body-image paranoia and ecological decay. The Unwellness Center will provide guests with bespoke supplements for purchase, health examinations, fitness and meditation classes and a nap room, in addition to a series of performances.
Please join us for the opening reception on April 22 at 7pm, with a premiere performance of “Consent,” with Vanessa Place and Shevaun Wright. Summary: Two lawyers negotiate the terms of a standard sexual consent contract, bargaining hard to “get to the yes.” The cast includes a stenographer in a red dress.
As part of The Unwellness Center, Qubit is also proud to present two remarkable evenings of new and rarely heard work by some of America’s best-known conceptualists. With two shows, on April 26 and 27, this is truly an event not to be missed.
Set in a former Santander Bank Branch in Alphabet City, Varispeed will perform their arrangement of Robert Ashley’s “The Bank” from his masterpiece Perfect Lives. Varispeed’s site-specific rendition of Perfect Lives found its way onto both Time Out New York’s and the LA Times’s Best of 2011 lists back when they first performed it in Brooklyn and Manhattan. Since then, it has traveled to Jersey City, the Catskills, Pittsburgh, and Middletown, CT. The members of Varispeed—Gelsey Bell, Brian McCorkle, Paul Pinto, Dave Ruder, and Aliza Simons—have been celebrated for their interpretations of Ashley’s work and recently appeared in the production of Robert Ashley’s Improvement at the Kitchen.
Vanessa Place and Alec Hall present their latest collaborative work, entitled “When Freud and Lacan say the unconscious knows only one sex, they mean that in the unconscious, the phallus does not have a corresponding female signifier, and due to this basic dissymmetry, both male and female assume their sexual positioning by way of one signifier, the symbolic phallus, so that for the unconscious there is no representation of the female sex, rendering the unconscious monosexual or homosexual (same sexual), leaving only one signifier for both sexes, i.e., the phallus, and, thus, as Lacan (1998) notes in Encore (Sem XX), as far as love is concerned, gender seems irrelevant (“Quand on aime il ne s’agit pas de sexe” [“When one loves, it has nothing to do with gender”] (p. 25)), suggesting that even as we seek love we are chained to a signifier that corresponds, finally, only to itself, for we are both its substance and its shadow, our liaisons revolving around the precise point of this continuous impossibility and the temporary coincidence of its assertion, fated to repeat, as love does not resolve the bind, but act as a binding solution, intimating the possibility of a new signifier, one that makes of love that steady surprise of affect and effect, i.e., sound always comes first.”
In the spirit of unwellness, composer-performer Gelsey Bell will perform a solo from her current piece-in-development “Within,” which explores themes of embodiment, pain, disease, and uteri.
Qubit is a contemporary music and performance art initiative founded in 2010 by Alec Hall and Bryan Jacobs. Its principal mission is to foster the development of emergent voices by working with young composers whose work has yet to reach wide audiences, and to explore and develop new and experimental technologies as they relate to performance practice, sonic aesthetics, and public engagement.Qubit plays a unique role in New York City’s artistic geography. With an emphasis on the creative use of technology, Qubit harnesses divergent forms of experimentation in music, sound, and visual aesthetics that speak to our contemporary condition. The mobile, non-static nature of the organization enables us to challenge traditional curatorial practices of time-based works, and to engage audiences with works and experiences that begin to express the creative possibilities of the 21st century.
For more information about Qubit, visit them online at https://qubitmusic.com/