Thursday, May 20, 2010

Postmodern, perhaps.

After starting with such a bang, I expected my time in Vienna might relax a bit, but as it turns out, the last few days have been nearly as crazed as the first one.
On Monday, we met to discuss Lipsynch, and then I crashed hard for a few hours. I was just too tired and jet-lagged to do that much.
However, by evening, we were ready to go. David, Rachel and I went to a late dinner, staying at this little restaurant until almost midnight. I had something which in English were called “deep-fried vegetable balls,” so I’m sure I’d prefer to call them their german name, if I knew it.
We drank Ottakringer Radler which, as the name informs you, is pretty rad. It’s essentially half beer, half lemonade, so for wimps like myself who can’t stand the taste of beer, it’s kind of awesome. After a few of them, beer stops tasting so awful. ;)
Anyway, we went back to 1516 after that, even convincing dear David to join us, where we were greeted like regulars by Owen, our favourite bartender. Frank met us later, and we somehow, despite having said we were going to go home early, ended up getting to the pensione after 4 again, after yet again getting lost.
For the record, I have now actually figured out how to get home from 1516. It’s literally 1 block to the pensione, but damned if we could figure that out before. We kept walking in exactly the opposite direction of correct, which led to taking taxis home two nights in a row.
Tuesday, we had a slightly later meeting to discuss our plays, before Jill, Elinor and I decided to head out in search of some fun. We found fun, definitely. It may have included a Radler at the Australian pub around the corner, and then drinks at a little cafe nearby, broken up by some shopping, mostly of the window variety (though I did find a pretty grey wrap to wear with my dress for only 5€).
We all met back at the pensione to get ready, and after 8, we walked the couple blocks to the Albertina, a nearby museum, which just happens to have a lovely restaurant on top of it, managed by our dear friend Frank. He brought us champagne (that was actually really good, despite the fact that I’d never before met a wine or champagne that didn’t make me want to gag. You get what you pay for, apparently. Or what other people pay for, anyway), and found us a table for six, despite being pretty busy. Lucky us. The meal was fantastic (I had white asparagus risotto with grilled prawns), and we had amazing dessert samplers placed in front of us.
We headed out to 1516 again after that, though we didn’t stay out nearly so late, and we managed to walk home without help or pointing in the right direction or anything.

Wednesday, Rachel and myself headed out to the Albertina, having seen signs about an Andy Warhol exhibit. We began on the top floor with the modern art, and even saw a Magritte, which made me practically giddy. The next floor down was older, and a little too uniform for me. Dozens and dozens of excellent landscapes, but a little dull after a while. We discovered after much searching that the Warhol exhibit ended on the 16th. Damn. However, along the way, we had a great conversation about art and mental health and the line between genius and crazy. It was really interesting to be looking at a Magritte or a Miro or a Matisse and talking about how illness feeds art. Very fitting given my poetic pet project this last year.
Anyway, by this point, we were running late to meet Jill and Elinor at St. Stephen’s cathedral. Late enough that we missed them, but we did go through the cathedral tour and the catacombs, which were creepy as hell. At the pensione, I tried to write, but ended up napping for half an hour or so while we waited for David and Ian who were supposed to meet us for dinner. They were late, so we headed off without them to a Shisha bar around the corner that had great middle eastern food (and employs our dear new friend Salim, whose name I am probably misspelling). After some falafel and things, we met the group to head back to MQ for Do Animals Cry?
All I’m left with after that show is a number of jokes, like “Do Animals Cry when you make them watch this fucking play?” or “Do Animals like this show any better than the audience, half of whom left long before it was over?”
It was a postmodern, pretentious, avant-garde mess, and my notes I took during the play (to write a review from later) look approximately like this:
was that supposed to happen?
oh my god, do something
I have no idea what I’m supposed to get out of this
[note on approx. 45sec. long scene of interest]
man in front of me was snoring
[note on approx. 42sec. long scene of interest]
Christ figure – ding ding ding
people are indeed leaving [as in the audience leaving the theatre]
what’s so funny, dude? [referring to a guy who kept laughing hysterically]
mean-spirited social experiment where we all fail the test?
[reminder of particular scene with a guy running through a tunnel over and over and over] – somebody make it stop. This isn’t fair [as in, to the audience. I swear it was like 10 minutes of a guy running in circles]
[note on approx. 53sec. long scene of interest]
Like, STFU, seriously [aimed at the writer of the “play”]
I would have walked out early and felt totally justified b/c I think that’s what they want.
[reference to a scene where a girl sings a bit of “It’s the end of the world as we know it” at 1/4 speed, in a totally disaffected monotone] “it’s the end” – I fucking hope so.

Taken directly from my notes.
Just thinking about this wreck of performance art/masturbation makes me angry. My review will be fantastic, you just wait.
Anyway, we all headed to coffee to discuss how pissed we were, then Rachel, Kathy and I went to the Irish pub nearby, and talked. Kathy and I had a fantastic conversation about art and the avant-garde (that some people I know will already be familiar with ;) )
And now you’re caught up.
Tonight is the opera (La Traviata by Verdi, my first Italian opera, I’m so excited). Tomorrow maybe Schoenbrunn palace, gardens and the Vienna zoo. This city is beautiful and fantastic, and I would live here in a heartbeat, especially if I spoke German.
Back with more later, kids.
"We’re going out tonight, it’s starting/We’re more than ourselves, we are a party, party”
-“Terribly Stable” by Hey Ocean!

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