November 25th, 2008

La Weekend

The Amanda Palmer show on Saturday was wonderful. It was a packed house at the TLA in Philadelphia and the first time I'd seen her solo show, so there was much expectation. Her album was awarded a spot in the "100 best" on amazon is climbing into the top 10 on NPR's "best albums of 2008" and we've been listening to it a lot. Before she went on stage, we ran out into the alley behind the TLA for a 120 second photo shoot (it's getting to be something of a habit). There was one off-camera flash on a voice-activated stand and just all the wonderful goodness of the Danger Ensemble.

Amanda played by herself with just a piano, sometimes accompanied by a violin. I got lengthy shout-outs during the show -- which was wonderful. When you're a performer you do your thing, people come to see you, and when you're done they applaud and you know you've done a good thing. When you're a photographer or a writer you do your thing and -- for the most part, there's a hushed silence and maybe your significant other takes you out for dinner. So, it was very gratifying to hear a veritable scream of cheers and applause when Amanda said "Does anybody know who Kyle Cassidy is?"

Looking at her up there I had the sudden realization that Amanda's all grown up now. No longer the white-faced cherub in the black dress with the stripy stockings -- this journey has taken us all far along. It was a bit sad when she did Coin Operated Boy and Girl Anachronism and Brian wasn't there doing his wonderful Brian thing -- but Brian's off having his own adventure right now (photos of that all in good time) and I can't imagine not seeing them together again at some point.

After the show The Vermillion lies came back to Casa Del Milla with shadowcaptain and Nathan and Beth and Claire and some other people and I. I didn't get to bed until 3:30 in the morning.

These are the Vermillion Lies. They're a quirky punk cabaret sister act who opened for Amanda.

No cats were eaten during the taking of this photo.

The next morning I got up stupifyingly early and trillian_stars and I took the train north to a photo shoot that I'd been planning for a while. It went wonderfully but I realized it would work a lot better if I did it again at night, so I'm going to reshoot it in two weeks and it'll look EVEN BETTER so you can see it then.

After that we raced home and got prepared for the poster-photo for Trillian's Angels in America play. That turned out so well I can't possibly post it today and make it compete with Amanda and the Danger Ensemble.

After that, trillian_stars went off to rehearsal and I went to Michael "5 Freaking Hugo Awards" Swanwick's party with Jared Axelrod and J.R. Blackwell. The place was stuffed to the freaking rafters with science fiction luminaries. Tom Purdom was there, and Gardner "15 Freaking Hugo Awards" Dozois and Greg Frost, author of the Shadowbridge books.

Because I'd been reading Visible Man which I think is terrific, it was wonderful to be able to talk to Gardner about the stories in it. I snapped a photo of him with my cell phone:

He's doing a short story collection right now that Neil Gaiman's got a story in.

If you mentioned the name of ANY science fiction author, someone at the party would launch into a personal anecdote ... going on vacation with Fred Saberhagen, Isaac Asimov fixing someone's blender, phone calls from "Bill" Gibson. It was charged.

I asked Michael if I could see his Hugo awards and he took us up to his office where they sat on piles of books looking ... wonderful. I espied a proof of leemoyer's cover for The Best of Michael Swanwick now out in hardback. We talked about how cool Lee Moyer is, and I snapped this photo (again with the cell phone).

We also got to see "The Decomposition of Oscar Wilde" which I'd heard a lot about -- it was a beautiful antique photo album (the kind with the paper corners around the photos) and Michael had put a copy of "The Picture of Dorian Grey" in his back yard and photographed it over a period of FOUR YEARS while it turned from a book into a grey, crusted mass, every time from the exact same vantage point. He'd made it into a single, unique piece of art. If you want to see the Decomposition of Oscar Wilde, you have to go to Michael's house and see it there. It's not for sale, it's not on the web. It's unique. Like so many people there.

I came home late that night and crashed, exhausted. trillian_stars was home soon after. It was a swell weekend.

In any event, I have a show on Friday, don't forget.
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