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New Art Performance Revisits the Height of the AIDS Crisis

New Art Performance Revisits AIDS Crisis

A new theatrical solo performance from John Kelly brings audiences into the 1980s New York art world. 

Performance and visual artist John Kelly defies classification. The self-described "aesthetic octopus" has 40 years of work spanning theater, music, singing, dance, trapeze, painting, and memorable Joni Mitchell drag. In the 1970s he saw gay theater collective the Cockettes and was inspired to start a performance career of his own. Through the 1980s he created rebellious work that offered a defiant light in New York's downtown arts community during the height of the AIDS crisis. He reflects on his personal experiences and decades of creativity in the new solo performance work, Time No Line.


The show can be thought of as a "live memoir" boldly based on his 42 years of journal writing. Combining historic texts with movement, video, music, song, and live drawing, he theatrically renders the 1980s East Village performance art scene as he revisits his experiences of the AIDS epidemic, gender performance, and our shared cultural history.

Kelly's expansive works have collected two Bessie Awards, two Obie Awards, and two NEA American Masterpiece Awards, to name a few from an illustrious, illuminating career.

Watch a preview of the show below.

Time No Line is showing at REDCAT in Los Angeles Thursday through Saturday.

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