Tag Archives: Variations Theatre Group

LIC performance space presents Unchained Theatre Festival for third year

| rmackay@queensny.org

Photo courtesy of Variations Theatre Group

The Chain Theatre was established in 2012 with the mission to create a supportive community where artists could hone their craft, present new works and revive classics from the American tradition. Since then, the 75-seat venue has helped develop up-and-coming pieces such as “Dragula” and “Einstein,” while also hosting such time-honored masterpieces as “Talk Radio” and “One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest.”

On June 12, the Long Island City performance space will kick off the Unchained Theatre Festival, which will run until June 28. This third annual extravaganza will present 15 pieces — eight shorts and seven full-length plays — chosen through a blind selection process. Each will run three times in different blocks.

One play, Patrick Cann’s “Alice!,” is a modern day imagining of “Alice in Wonderland” with puppets, dancing and references to Shakespeare and Nietzsche.

¡Oso Fabuloso & The Bear Backs!,” a campy musical by J. Julian Christopher, tells the story of a gay, singing bear who goes on tour to forget about a painful breakup.

The Door to Home” by Eugene Grygo, whose comedy about therapy sessions wowed last year’s festival, is a family drama about an aging mother’s strained relationship with her 30-year-old son.

The audiences and a few judges will vote on the best play, best director, best leading actor and audience favorite. The winning work will be performed once more during the finale on June 28.


First annual Chain NYC Film Festival coming to Long Island City

| aaltamirano@queenscourier.com

Photo courtesy of Chain NYC Film Festival/ The Chain Theatre

Over 70 films from filmmakers near and far will be hitting the big screen in Long Island City.

The Chain Theatre in LIC will be hosting the first annual Chain NYC Film Festival from Tuesday, August 6 through Sunday, August 18.

The 76 films being screened range from short documentaries to feature length narratives from European, Australian, Indian and even New York filmmakers from all the five boroughs.

“I wanted to provide an intimate experience where filmmakers could come and meet their audience,” said Kirk Gostkowski, festival director who organized the event along with Christina Elise Perry, festival producer. “There are a lot of stories that take you places I haven’t even seen before.”

Some films feature Academy Award winning actor Jeremy Irons, Academy Award nominees Cathy Moriarty and Sally Kirkland, and Tony nomiariations Theatre Group, opened up in January and is housed inside a two-story, 4,000-square-foot fnated actor Will Chase.

The Chain Theatre, owned by Vacility that features a flexible black box space allowing seating configuration to change for every show.

Variations Theatre Group utilizes and allows other theatre production companies to use the theatre’s equipped performances spaces, gallery space, rehearsal rooms and reading areas to put on theatrical performances.

Yet, Gostkowshi hopes the film festival will attract new visitors that will want to come back to the theatre after their first experience at the festival.

“This is all a gateway for people to see the work we produce. People feel more comfortable going to the movies than seeing a play,” said Gostkowski. “It’s giving us an opportunity to reach out to an audience we don’t normally serve. It’s really exciting. It’s a similar but new experience.”

On Saturday, August 17 the festival will host a “Best of Fest” day and on Sunday August, 18 awards will be given out to numerous films in different categories. One of the awards includes a New York

Filmmaker award which will be given to filmmakers from one of the five boroughs.

For more information on film festival schedule and the different films, visit www.chainfilmfestival.com. The Chain Theatre is located at 21-28 45th Road in Long Island City and only a few steps away from the Court Square subway station.



Queens’ Morning Roundup

| ctumola@queenscourier.com


Thursday: Overcast. High of 43. Winds from the WNW at 10 to 15 mph. Chance of rain 20%. Thursday Night: Overcast with a chance of snow and a chance of rain. Low of 27 with a windchill as low as 19. Winds from the NNW at 5 to 15 mph. Chance of snow 30%.

EVENT OF THE DAY: After the Fall

Veteran production company Variations Theatre Group has found a new home at the former US Chain Factory site in Long Island City, which once housed a photo development facility and a plant for industrial syringes. Variations launches with After the Fall, one of Arthur Miller’s most autobiographical works, intimately exploring his failed marriage to Marilyn Monroe and her subsequent suicide. January 17 to February 2, 7 p.m. Click here for more info or to submit an event of your own

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